NAVAL WAR COLLEGE
CDR, United States Navy
A paper submitted to the Faculty of the Naval War College in satisfaction of the requirements for the Theater Security Decision Making Course Final Exam.
The contents of this paper reflect my own personal views and are not necessarily endorsed by the Naval War College of the Department of Navy.
6 January, 2013
Situation: In the scenario for this exam, General Jacoby has ordered the development of a strategy for accomplishing USNORTHCOM’s increased responsibilities in the Arctic region. He placed Major General Howard N. Thompson, USNORTHCOM Chief of Staff, in charge of a “tiger team” consisting of members from each of the command’s staff sections and key interagency partners. The team’s primary task is developing NORTHCOM’s Arctic strategy, including a plan for implementation and assurance. You have been selected to serve as a member of this team. MG Thompson is aware of your Naval War College experience and has asked you to develop his preliminary “road ahead” for NORTHCOM in the Arctic.
Task: Drawing on all the tools, concepts, and techniques we have examined in the TSDM course, respond to MG Thompson with an essay that does not exceed eight double-spaced pages.
Environmental conditions in the Artic are more hostile to the development of “The Road Ahead” than the other operating areas such as CENTCOM’s flat dry deserts of the Mideast, PACCOM’s vast ocean expanses of the Pacific. The lowest world temperature in inhabited areas was recorded in the Arctic. The thermometers plunged to -90.4°F / -68°C in Oymyakon, Siberia (Feb. 6, 1933). In winter, cold seeps into vehicle engines causing them to seize up unless they are left running constantly; storms can shut down entire areas and ice up everything on shore and in shore for weeks on end; shift workers and