A strong U.S. telecommunications research capability is also important for several indirect reasons related to defense and homeland security: Skill base of engineering talent: education and training. To solve the specialized communications issues in C4I requires that the United States have the best telecommunications engineers in the world, which in turn requires that a vibrant commercial industry be maintained. Otherwise, the best engineers will migrate to countries that have protected or low-cost businesses, and ultimately U.S. security will be put at risk.

Delivery capability of government suppliers. Because meeting military requirements depends on fundamental understanding of very-high-speed optical networks, satellite communications, and support of mobility in the battlefield, it is not sufficient to have a cadre of educated and trained individuals. Corporate environments must also be available in which such individuals are trained to work together in teams on system-level designs, and to take an interdisciplinary approach.

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