Nimble Titan 18
(Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL

BRUSSELS, Belgium - Senior leaders from 23 nations and three international organizations gathered at the NATO headquarters in Brussels, Belgium, Sept. 12-13 to collaborate on the Nimble Titan 18 integrated air and missile defense campaign of experimentation.

The event, jointly hosted by U.S. Strategic Command's Joint Functional Component Command for Integrated Missile Defense and NATO, provides a forum for allied and partner nations to explore policy imperatives and operational strategies for comprehensive collective missile defense.

As missile threats continue to proliferate in both quantity and technical sophistication, JFCC IMD focuses on integrating and synchronizing global missile defense planning and advocating for future capabilities to pace the evolving threat. JFCC IMD Commander Lt. Gen. James H. Dickinson emphasized the benefits of international partnerships and the alliances when planning integrated air and missile defense.

"Cooperation and collective defense with allies and partners helps mitigate the increasing global threat of ballistic and cruise missiles as well as emerging hybrid threats," said Dickinson. "It is clear, no one nation can defend against all adversary missile forces. Enabling a more robust burden sharing through increased interoperability is not only more efficient, it is a military necessity."

Nimble Titan allows partners and allies to learn from each other, enhancing multi-domain military planning and exploring the associated policy framework. As more nations field air and missile defense systems, the potential for complementary support is enhanced; yet challenges also increase. Issues of threat perception, regional and transregional command and control, and cyber vulnerabilities all present hurdles to overcome. The Nimble Titan campaign provides a globally integrated scenario set against a notional 10-year future epoch allowing members to experiment in an unclassified and non-attributional environment.

Highlighting the benefits of the campaign, Col. Tom Hancock, the Nimble Titan campaign director, stated, "Experiencing these threat scenarios together has enabled our work with each other to develop solutions to these complex challenges. Being able to bring together top policy officials and military leadership for this senior leader event to discuss the outcomes of the campaign was a great opportunity. Ultimately this shared understanding and ability to give guidance for the next Nimble Titan 20 campaign ensures we remain focused on the issues important to our collective leadership."

Throughout the two-year campaign, nations focused exploring on a comprehensive approach to integrated air and missile defense against both regional and global threats. This included the full range of diplomatic, informational, military and economic actions from pre-crisis to conflict. While there are national differences across the span of these actions and operations, what is critical is the understanding created that fosters an environment for unified action.

The Nimble Titan 20 campaign begins in just a few months with the Campaign Design Conference where member countries and organizations will collectively develop the objectives for the next two-year campaign.