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meet their special requirements, but little attention was given as to how the system of one agency could function in concert with the system of another agency.
This situation was recognized and some corrective steps taken, particularly within the Department of Defense; however, the Cuban crisis in 1962 pointed out that serious deficiencies in our overall national telecommunications capability still existed and emphasized the immediate need for positive corrective action. Consequently, in his memorandum to the heads of all executive departments and agencies, dated August 21, 1963, President Kennedy directed the establishment of a system to be known as the National Communication System, to strengthen the telecommunications support to all major functions of government.
The concept envisaged in the President's memorandum, and which is being adhered to at present, is not that of a separate telecommunication system, owning and operating its own facilities, but rather that of a managerial organization. This organization will develop such technical standards and procedures, and do other things as are necessary to insure, first, that agencies do not establish their own unique systems when their needs can be satisfied adequately by existing means, and second, to insure that the separately funded and managed telecommunications facilities, are so designed and operated that they can interface and work together as a coherent entity. At present, there are included in the NCS specified long haul telecommunication capabilities of the Department of Defense, Department of State, the Federal Aviation Agency, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, and the General Services Administration. In addition, certain assets of the Department of the Interior, Department of Commerce, Atomic Energy Commission, Federal Communications Commission and the U.S. Information Agency are also included.
The principal objective of the NCS, as stated in the Presidential memorandum, is to provide necessary communications for the Federal Government under all conditions ranging from a normal situation to national emergencies and international crises, including nuclear attack.
The same Presidential memorandum delineated the respective responsibilities of the Executive Office of the President, and the Executive Agent, in relation to the NCS. I will summarize these, starting with the Executive Office of the President.
The Director of Telecommunications Management, Office of Emergency Planning, advises with respect to policy direction of the development and operation of the National Communications System. In this capacity he also serves as a Special Assistant to the President for Telecommunications. He advises regarding communication requirements to be supplied through the NCS; actions by the agencies in implementing and utilizing the NCS; guidance to be given with respect to the design and operation of the NCS; and use of the system developed, to provide, on a priority basis and under varying conditions of emergency, communications to the users of the NCS.
He advises as to requirements unique to the needs of the Presidency, and issues guidance as to the relative priorities of requirements. In addition, he advises the President with respect to his functions under the Communications Satellite Act of 1962.
In order to insure that unified operations and technical planning would result in a highly effective and responsive system to meet the coordinated needs of the Federal Government, it was deemed appropriate to establish an Executive Agent for the National Communications System. The Secretary of Defense was designated by the President to serve in this capacity. In this role he is charged with the design, the overall concept and the configuration of the National Communications System, taking into consideration the communication needs and resources of all Federal agencies.
Additionally, the Executive Agent develops plans and programs for fulfilling approved agency requirements, makes priority determinations, and recommends assignments of operational responsibilities to serve user agencies. He assists agencies, and the Administrator of General Services with respect to the Federal Telecommunications System, to accomplish their respective undertakings in the development and operation of their communications systems.
The Executive Agent allocates, reallocates, and arranges for restoration of communications facilities to authorized users, under emergency or other conditions, based on approved requirements and priorities.
He monitors, directs and coordinates research and development activities in support of the NCS to insure that the total system reflects significant advancements in the dynamic art of telecommunications.
Thus, in view of the far-ranging responsibilities I have just enumerated briefly, it can be seen that the Executive Agent, especially in the important and critical area of national security, must carry on comprehensive and effective managerial functions, including longrange planning, to insure that the NCS meets future total Government needs.
The Secretary of Defense was authorized to delegate these functions within the Department of Defense, at all times subject to his direction, authority, and control. Consequently he delegates to me the functions of overall coordination of NCS matters, the review of progress within the NCS, the receipt and processing of requirements, and of recommending tasks to be performed within the NCS. The Executive Agent also designated the Director of the Defense Communications Agency, General Starbird, to serve additionally as the Manager, NCS. Under my staff supervision, it is his function, as the title implies, to actually manage the NCS in the sense of having detailed technical and operational plans and procedures developed and put into force; of providing technical assistance to the participating agencies; of allocating and reallocating facilities; arranging for restoration of services; of recommending changes to the composition of the NCS; and testing and reporting on the effectiveness of NCS service.
Thus, in broad terms, it may be said that the NCS is a system which is the result of tying together the telecommunication assets of various Federal agencies so that they may function as a coherent whole in supporting all major functions of Government. The Special Assistant to the President for Telecommunications is responsible for advising as to policy guidance on the overall design and operation of the NCS. The Executive Agent, NCS, is totally responsible for the broad techni
cal planning and other detailed actions necessary in order that the NCS will function along the guidelines set down.
I would like to say that in all of the activities carried out by the Executive Agent and the Manager, NCS, there is close cooperation between our offices and the office of the special assistant. The complementary nature of our responsibilities requires very close collaboration between our respective organizations. Questions touching on major NCS policy are discussed before being formalized by either organization.
In the area of satellite communications, the special role of the NCS is that designated by a White House memorandum in which the President designated the Secretary of Defense, as Executive Agent for the NCS, to arrange when necessary with the Communications Satellite Corp. for the procurement of satellite communication services for the National Communications System and to take appropriate steps to assure that the services provided are satisfactory to meet the needs of the National Communications System.
The Executive Agent has functioned pursuant to this memorandum in connection with arrangements made with Comsat Corp. for the special satellite communications support required by NASA for its Apollo program. He directed that studies be made of all reasonable alternative means of fulfilling the NASA communication requirements. These studies confirmed that the Comsat Corp. could best provide the required services. He monitored closely the negoti. ations with the Comsat Corp. leading to the procurement of such services. Similarly, he is now closely monitoring the proposed leasing by the Department of Defense of some 30 common carrier communication satellite voice channels in the Pacific area.
Now to return for a moment to the accomplishments of the NCS:
The presidential memorandum establishing the NCS assigned 10 tasks which were basic steps in getting the NCS organized and functioning. These have been completed. One of the most significant actions was the development of uniform procedures and priorities standards to insure that communications traffic is treated strictly on its own merit regardless of whose system it may be traversing at any given moment. We also have established a National Communications System emergency action group to best utilize the telecommunication assets of the NCS agencies as required to meet the needs of the emer-) gency at hand. Another task required the annual preparation of
a 5-year longrange plan for the NCS for the approval of the President. The plan recommends objectives, modifications, and improvement of the NCS. The first long-range plan was submitted in the fall of_1964. Following submittal of this plan, the Special Assistant to the President for Telecommunications recommended guidelines to the Executive Agent which have been incorporated into the second long-range plan. This latter document has been submitted recently and is murrently being reviewed prior to our receiving presidential approval. Thank you. Mr. HOLIFIELD. Thank you, Mr. Horwitz.
General Starbird, will you give your presentation now, and we will question tomorrow on both of you. .
STATEMENT OF LT. GEN. ALFRED D. STARBIRD, U.S. ARMY,
DIRECTOR, DEFENSE COMMUNICATIONS AGENCY General STARBIRD. Mr. Chairman and members of the committee, it is a privilege to appear before you today and to discuss certain items concerning the Defense Department's activity in the satellite communications field. I shall not elaborate upon the matters covered by the testimony of Secretary Horwitz, who dealt with the background and operation of the NCS. Nor shall I cover the status of our current R. & D. efforts in the satellite communications area which have been outlined by Mr. Rogers. Rather, I shall pick up from where they stopped and cover the remaining questions of your August 5 letter to Secretary McNamara, and certain elaborating questions given to me by Counsel Roback. Specifically, I shall
(a) Our operational plans for use of the initial defense communications satellite project (IDCSP).
(6) Where we now stand on an advanced defense communications satellite project (ADCSP).
(c) The Government's procurement of service for NASA's Apollo program.
(d) Our recent award of a contract to the Communications Satellite Corp. for Pacific circuitry.
You will remember that the IDCSP was to be primarily a research and development effort to examine and test a satellite communications system. As such it was to be a limited capacity, low-cost system. It was to place in orbit approximately 15 uncontrolled, nearsynchronous satellites. Ground stations being procured would be such that each satellite with two ground stations could handle about two voice-equivalent circuits. The system though designed primarily for R. & D. would give us a limited operational capacity, particularly for deployment to emergency locations where sufficient reliable communications did not otherwise exist.
We have operational at the present time six ground terminals that can work with the seven satellites already in orbit. Additional ground and ship terminals are coming available at a rate of 1 to 2 a month—so we expect to have about 20 terminals by April 1967. A further launch of eight satellites is planned for this month. As an example, as to how we would use the system operationally, this fall we are deploying terminals to southeast Asia to give us a capability of handling minimum essential traffic if all other communications means fail.
Now, with regard to the ADCSP or the advanced defense communication satellite project, meanwhile, even as we initiate installation and test of the limited capacity IDCSP, we have studied the necessity for a later system with a large enough capacity to accommodate a large number of individual small capacity trunks, in accordance with the policy of the United States as reiterated by the
President on March 3, 1966, in his annual report to the Congress on he activities and accomplishments under the Communications Satelite Act of 1962, as follows:
The United States government may establish and maintain separate satellite communications facilities including surface terminals to meet its unique and rital national security needs which cannot be met by commercial facilities. Che capacity of these separate facilities shall at all times be limited to that *ssential to meet such unique needs.
We interpret a requirement as being unique and vital if it must be fulfilled under all conditions, even nuclear attack, and if no other means satisfactory to the purpose would be readily available to fulill adequately the need. Much of our command and control circuitry is therefore "unique and vital” within the meaning of the President's statement. On the opposite end of the scale, few, if any, of our logistics and administrative circuits would qualify. By July 1965, the Secretary of Defense had approved a list of representative unique and vital requirements to guide us in the definition of an operational military communications satellite system for the 1970 time frame.
With the list of requirements in hand, and I should state that the requirements are several times higher than those served by the IDCSP, we sought the advice of industry on various schemes for fulfillment by contracting with six independent contractors for studies. Then between November 1965 and June 1966, we, in the Defense Communications Agency, evaluated these industrial studies and studies made by the military services. We derived from these and from our own analyses, a proposed system definition of the advanced defense communications satellite program. Recently, I submitted recommendations through the Joint Chiefs of Staff to the Secretary of Defense that we proceed with the contract definition phase for an ADCSP, the capacity of which would be available beginning in 1970. The recommendations are now being reviewed by the Joint Chiefs of Staff and have not yet reached the Secretary of Defense.
THE NASA REQUIREMENT
Next, as to the question of the fulfillment of the NASA requirements:
(a) Meanwhile, certain special operational requirements have arisen which could only be satisfactorily met by communications satellite circuitry. The first of these was one for NASA for the transmission of the voice/data and teletype information concerning Apollo flights from six remote tracking stations to and from Houston. Specifically, the requirement was for six voice/data and two teletype circuits from Carnarvon, Australia, from Grand Canary Island, from Ascension Island, and from three ships to be located in the mid-Atlantic, mid-Pacific, and mid-Indian Oceans.
(6) On June 16, 1965, NASA wrote me as Manager, NCS, requesting that I initiate discussions with the Communications Satellite Corporation to determine their capability and cost of meeting NASA's requirements for the three Apollo insertion/injection ships and the tracking stations I have just mentioned. After a number of discussions with NASA and Comsat Corp. I recommended to Assistant Secretary Horwitz on July 26, 1965, that he formally obtain from