Call Me Joe

US Joint Forces Command has issued a report that forecasts potential threats and opportunities facing the US military Joint Force over the next 25 years—calling it Joint Operating Environment 2008 or JOE 2008, for short. In his cover letter, JFCOM boss Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis, writes: “Predictions about the future are always risky. … Regardless, if we do not try to forecast the future, there is no doubt that we will be caught off guard.” He adds, “We are sufficiently confident of this study’s rigor that it can guide future concept development.” An accompanying release notes that the document should “spark discussions with the widest set of national security and multinational partners.” It covers trends ranging from demographics, energy, and food to climate and cyber. It goes into potential threats rising from China, Russia, and regions from the Pacific to South America. It talks about weak states and unconventional power. And it offers implications for the Joint Force from preparing for war to professional military education.