When Americans think about military power, they often associate our wars with iconic commanders like Grant, Eisenhower, Nimitz, and Doolittle. They may also think about the famous weapons that helped win them: the P-51 Mustang fighter, the Essex-class aircraft carriers of World War II, and, more recently, the Abrams tank, F-117 stealth fighter, and GPS-guided smart bombs.
Success against a technologically-advanced enemy in the future will require us to think much differently — about both the tools we use in war and, more importantly, how they work together. In fact, the most important element of future combat will not necessarily be warships, combat vehicles, aircraft, or satellites. It will be a battle network that connects them to work in unprecedented harmony.