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Recent ILW Publications
Cyberspace Operations in Support of Counterinsurgency Operations
by David W. Pendall, Ronald Wilkes and Timothy J. Robinson (Land Warfare Paper 95, April 2013)
This Land Warfare Paper discusses the nature of cyberspace operations in general, the need for enhanced cyberspace operations and expresses a viable way ahead for future cyberspace operations in Afghanistan. The authors posit that additional research and coordination should be conducted to better define and develop requirements for cyberspace capabilities, command and control of cyberspace operations and integration of activities in a manner that supports the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) commander, the operations of regional commanders and related strategic shaping and global counter terrorism (CT) pursuit operations. This paper was designed to provoke additional thought about cyberspace operational relevance, suggest necessary change and enable future success in Afghanistan and future conflicts.
The Hard Truth about "Easy Fighting" Theories: The Army is Needed Most When Specific Outcomes Matter
by Huba Wass de Czege (Landpower Essay 13-2, April 2013)
This Landpower Essay states that defining “easy fighting” theories as conceptions that promise low-risk and high-gain solutions to complex world problems, criticizes the apparently unwise and unrealistic current trend of the military to shape the majority of its engagements as AirSea Battles. Since the First Gulf War, the belief has grown that the power to change intolerable situations on the ground can be achieved without hard and bloody fighting by Soldiers and Marines. However, the author posits that the inconvenient truth is that easy fighting theories cannot be relied upon to deliver high-stakes results.
Military Ethic and the Judge Advocate General's Corps: Legal Guardians of the Profession of Arms
by Mari K. Eder (Landpower Essay 13-1, April 2013)
This Landpower Essay cites numerous specific examples of officers who have been relieved of their duties because of improper or inappropriate behavior. This failure of our leaders to live within the strictures of honorable ethical habits causes problems down the chain of command; subordinates will not be inclined to follow the leadership of an officer who has proved himself to be morally derelict. The JAG Corps, in maintaining the functioning and fair military system in which such cases are handled, serves to support and sustain the Profession of Arms and the model of a Professional Soldier.
Misinterpretation and Confusion: What is Mission Command and Can the U.S. Army Make it Work?
by Donald E. Vandergriff (Land Warfare Paper 94, February 2013)
In this Land Warfare Paper, Donald Vandergriff elucidates that when Mission Command functions ideally, once subordinates understand the intentions of their commanders they are responsible for using their creativity and initiative to adapt to changing circumstances and accomplish their missions within the guidelines of those initial intentions. He questions the degree to which modern technology allows for too much oversight in mission execution and argues that unless the Army seriously examines its personnel system and the current force structure and implements necessary improvements, the vital principal of Mission Command will continue to be lost. With this necessity in mind, Vandergriff suggests the widespread use of Outcomes-Based Training and Education, as it provides a solution for how best to teach Mission Command in our 21st century world.
Strategy and Policy: Civilian and Military Leadership in the 21st Century
by Nicholas R. Krueger (National Security Watch 13-1, 18 January 2013)
This National Security Watch remarks on the technological advances both in communication and arms that have occurred in recent years. As this enables a growing number of potential adversaries to be more effective in their endeavors against the United States, there is an immediate and continued requirement for capable leadership and visionary strategy to combat hostile advances. Thus, it is necessary to review how the United States creates its security strategy and executes its security policy. Citing historical examples from the 20th century, the author examines past relationships between civil and military authorities, advocating that, based on past experiences, future relationships between these two authorities ought to be open and candid to ensure the enactment of effective policies.
Strategists Break All the Rules
by Adelaido Godinez (Land Warfare Paper 93, January 2013)
In this Land Warfare Paper, Adelaido Godinez argues that Upton’s proposed strict dichotomy is problematic, for while it is true that the Army should not be governed by political agendas, it must be aware of the relevant and vitally important policies of our nation. In addition to this first criticism, the author takes issue with Upton’s position that the problems encountered at a tactical and operational level are similar enough to be useful in solving problems at a strategic level.
The U.S. Army Capstone Concept: Defining the Army of 2020
(Defense Report 13-1, January 2013)
This Defense Report discusses the revised “The U.S. Army Capstone Concept” (U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command Pamphlet 525-3-0), released in December 2012, which presents the Army’s initiative to transition into a continental United States (CONUS)-based expedition ready force. The Army Capstone Concept serves as a guide to how the Army will employ its resources to confront an uncertain future and offers an outline for comprehensive investment in Army force structure, modernization and readiness in accordance with national strategy guidance.
★ ★ ★ 2012 ★ ★ ★
Army Total Force Policy: Fully Integrating the Operational Reserve
(Defense Report 12-1, December 2012)
This Defense Report discusses the role and implementation of the Army Total Force Policy. Signed by Secretary of the Army John McHugh in September 2012, the document lends official and institutional permanence to the practice of AC and RC Soldiers fighting as one operational force—a practice already employed by Soldiers and commanders on the ground.
Leader Development, Learning Agility and the Army Profession
by Brian J. Reed (Land Warfare Paper 92, October 2012)
This Land Warfare Paper discusses the case being made by the current Army Profession campaign for a reevaluation and assessment of the Army as a profession and the attributes of the Army Professional. The author outlines a model for leader development anchored in learning agility and the notion that learning agile leaders apply previous learning and embrace opportunities for further learning in new, novel or ill-defined environments.
Just Don't Take Away My Smartphone
by Jeremy Rasmussen (Landpower Essay 12-1, October 2012)
This Landpower Essay presents the current dilemma that the military is facing in wanting to ensure efficient exchange of information using the advanced technology available, but at the same time needing to maintain information security.
Irregular Warfare: Counterterrorism Forces in Support of Counterinsurgency Operations
by William B. Ostlund (Land Warfare Paper 91, October 2012)
This Land Warfare Paper discusses the changes in the counterterrorism (CT) force profile and method of operating over the past ten years. As open coordination between battlespace owners and the CT force became necessary for the CT force's freedom of action, in January 2009 the CT force aggressively revamped its method of operating in Afghanistan. With this study, winner of the 2012 AUSA/Army Capabilities Integration Center writing contest, the author seeks to ensure that lessons learned regarding CT force transparency will be practiced and internalized.
Earned Deferred Compensation: Proposed Military Earnings Reforms Do More Harm Than Good
by Nicholas R. Krueger (National Security Watch 12-4, 15 August 2012)
This National Security Watch examines the potential changes to deferred compensation earned by U.S. Soldiers. The author describes the effects these changes could have on Soldier and unit readiness and posits that fee increases and military earnings reforms will have detrimental effects on Soldiers and their families. Moreover, the author writes that the revenue and savings resulting from these proposed changes will have only a very small impact on relieving the nation's budget crisis.
Profile of the U.S. Army—A Reference Handbook (2012 Edition)
(Special Report, June 2012)
A user-friendly reference book for people familiar with the Army and an easy-to-read introduction for family members, civilian employees, contractors and future Soldiers—takes a top-down approach, first describing the Army’s role as a key element in the national security structure and then flowing into the “why” and “how” of the Army’s organization. It also contains information and helpful graphics on the Soldier, the uniform, the Army’s command structure, Army families, installations and the Army’s current operations. For readers seeking more details, each chapter includes a list of relevant websites. Finally, Profile contains a glossary of acronyms and maps illustrating locations of current Army combat corps and divisions, Army National Guard divisions and brigade combat teams, and Army Reserve direct reporting commands.
General Matthew B. Ridgway: A Commander's Maturation of Operational Art
by Joseph R. Kurz (Land Warfare Paper 90W, September 2012)
This Land Warfare Paper is based on an examination of available primary sources—field orders, after-action reports and personal accounts—reinforced with secondary source analysis. It demonstrates that Ridgway achieved tactical success in World War II in Operations Husky, Neptune and Market but did not adequately apply operational art until Operation Varsity and the Battle of the Bulge. Although he completed all the military education available in his era, it was only after the intense crucible of three combat operations that he was able to apply operational art successfully.
Linking Latin America and the Pacific: A Strategy for the Long Term
by Douglas J. Schaffer (National Security Watch 12-3, 12 July 2012)
This National Security Watch examines DoD’s January 2012 strategic guidance, “Sustaining U.S. Global Leadership: Priorities for 21st Century Defense,” which “rebalances” the United States’ priorities toward Asia, particularly China. In this paper, the author posits that the United States could be better served by expanding its scope and considering the Pacific as defined by the ocean rather than just Asia. By connecting Western Hemisphere nations, especially in Latin America, with the Asia–Pacific region, the United States can form a broader, globally relevant, long-term strategic plan that better addresses the diverse security picture vis-à-vis the United States, China and the world.
Distilling the Demographic Dividend: Retaining U.S. Army Officer Talent for the 40-year Career?
by Kevin D. Stringer (Land Warfare Paper 89, June 2012)
This Land Warfare Paper posits that the Army would be better served if it transitioned to a system focused on keeping and developing selected senior field-grade officers for a 40-year career horizon. The paper explores the time, experience and energy required to develop the knowledge and expertise of officers to perform effectively in complex operations. In the author’s view, the Army should be stanching the tide of retirements of senior officers, who depart just when they offer the most value to the organization.
The Spider Webs and the Lion: How Energy and Environmental Issues Entangle China
by Mark Lee (Land Warfare Paper 88W, May 2012)
This Land Warfare Paper discusses seven distinct yet interrelated energy and environmental challenges currently facing China. The author discusses each of these challenges—energy demand, the water crisis, cumulative pollution effects, rapid urbanization, a must-grow-to-survive economy, the limitations of the central government and the long-standing attitude that humans can completely control nature—and their effects on China’s economic growth and stability. These issues already create unhealthy living situations and unsustainable energy sources and will soon test the legitimacy of China’s central government.
Historical Lessons Applied to the Current Technical Revolution in Military Affairs
by Benjamin Huebschman (Land Warfare Paper 87, March 2012)
This Land Warfare Paper discusses the development of future weapon systems, including those used by the dismounted Soldier, and proposes that future defense technology would benefit from a historical review of the evolution of weapons. The author presents the key stages in the development of weapon systems as case studies, examining each stage with sufficient detail and in its historical context. Each case study provides lessons that can then be applied to modern weapon development. The author’s analysis of these case studies leads him to propose an instantiation of a modern system with regard to Battlefield Operating Systems.
The Rationale for a Robust U.S. Army Presence in the Pacific Basin
by Nicholas R. Krueger (National Security Watch No. 12-2, 8 March 2012)
This National Security Watch examines four major components that, when taken together, build a strong strategic rationale for robust U.S. landpower in the Asia–Pacific region. The paper expands on each of the following observations: achieving the United States’ global strategic goals requires military coordination with Asian partners; the U.S. Army is an ideal security asset for pursuing mutual interests and developing a strategic hedge against future uncertainty; global trends toward increased uncertainty and complexity yield a wide range of foreseeable but undefined challenges in Asia; the U.S. Army stands ready to conduct full-spectrum operations; the United States is in a state of strategic military competition with regional powers. The U.S. Army can help the United States realize advantages in these contests; and the United States must be ready to fight and win in Korea—tonight if necessary.
Applying Natural System Metaphors to the Force Modernization Process
by K. Todd Chamberlain (Land Warfare Paper 86, February 2012)
This Land Warfare Paper relies upon recent research and findings in the fields of species evolution, ecosystem transitions and ecosystem management to provide recommended actions for the Army to take within each phase of its force modernization process: 1) operational environment and concept development; 2) capabilities integration and development; and 3) force development. By applying metaphors from genetic variability, natural selection, evolutionary strategies and natural system management activities, the Army could develop operationally adaptable forces that can survive and rapidly evolve to operate successfully in the current environment as well as in any potential future world that emerges.
Thinking About the 21st Century Security Environment: The Need for a Whole-of-Government Approach
by General Gordon R. Sullivan, USA Ret. (National Security Watch 12-1W, January 2012)
This National Security Watch examines how more interagency involvement in fighting the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan might have led to an earlier conclusion and with a more satisfactory outcome for all participants. Perhaps the United States would not have been so slow to learn and adapt, as has been the case in both wars. More interagency involvement might also have encouraged a civil–military discourse at the strategic level that would have produced more reasonable U.S. strategic objectives, thus avoiding the second- and third-order difficulties in execution and in communication to the American people that we have witnessed. The paper also discusses how, operationally, the inadequate interagency effort made the stability, support and counterinsurgency operations much less effective than they could have been.
2011 ILW Publications
2010 ILW Publications