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Recent ILW Publications
National Commission on the Future of the Army: A Potential Blueprint for the Total Army
(Defense Report 16-2, February 2016)
This Defense Report explains that the NCFA was established by Congress to address two major concerns: first, how best to organize and employ the Army despite a decline in resources; and second, whether the Army should consolidate all AH-64 Apache helicopters into the Regular Army. The commission released its report on 28 January 2016, providing 63 recommendations for the President, Congress, the Department of Defense and the Army to consider. Historically, declining resources following the end of a major conflict have invoked reticent response to overcoming challenges. The NCFA report is the beginning, not the end, of the process to determine how the Army will adjust in the next five to ten years. The majority of the recommendations require the Total Army to conduct detailed analysis to implement the suggested changes. The force structure changes are based on the current threat environment, which is constantly changing within the globalized world. Recommendations to better integrate Regular Army, Army National Guard and Army Reserve forces are critical to sustaining and maintaining the all-volunteer force.
Until They All Come Home: The Defense Prisoner of War/Missing in Action Accounting Agency
(Defense Report 16-1, February 2016)
This Defense Report explains that three separate organizations—the Defense Prisoner of War Missing Personnel Office, the Joint Prisoner of War/Missing in Action Accounting Command and the Air Force Life Sciences Equipment Laboratory—were merged over the last year to form a single organization, the Defense Prisoner of War/Missing Action Accounting Agency (DPAA). In laying out the particulars of some of what the DPAA has accomplished, this paper demonstrates how the merger has allowed for better oversight of case research, recovery operations and family communications. Americans owe a great deal to the servicemembers who gave the ultimate sacrifice to protect their freedom; DPAA is dedicated to ensuring that they are not forgotten.
African Horizons: The United States Army Working Toward a Secure and Stable Africa
by Douglas W. Merritt (National Security Watch, 1 February 2016)
In this National Security Watch, Merritt notes that while much-deserved attention is given to uncertain situations in the Middle East, the Asia–Pacific and Europe, volatile conditions in Africa are not given the real attention that they require. The size and diversity of the African continent results in a complex environment that requires not only a whole-of-government approach but a synchronized one. With embassies in more than 45 countries on the continent, the Department of State leads the U.S. effort in developing partners in Africa. Although the military solution in Africa is a joint one, the U.S. Army is the primary service building partner capabilities. The Army is partnering with more than 18 countries and is present in every region of Africa conducting engagements in support of U.S. interests. As the cornerstone of the joint force, requiring the capability and capacity to accomplish its mission and facilitate expansion from the other elements of national power, the U.S. Army in Africa must be sufficiently resourced to continue making and improving strategic impacts.
★ ★ ★ 2015 ★ ★ ★
These Are the Drones You Are Looking For: Manned–Unmanned Teaming and the U.S. Army
by Richard Lim (National Security Watch 15-4, 21 December 2015)
This National Security Watch examines the Army’s efforts to develop enduring technological superiority through Manned–Unmanned Teaming (MUM-T). The Department of Defense (DoD) has initiated a third offset strategy to ensure that the U.S. military remains the most technologically advanced fighting force in the world. However, the faster pace of the diffusion of technology, fueled in part by cyber intrusion, could reduce the duration of America’s resulting technical ascendancy. In response, DoD is identifying leap-ahead technologies that not only restore but also prolong the duration of the U.S. military’s preeminence. MUM-T will help create an enduring technological advantage by combining the revolutionary potential of unmanned systems with the indispensable human dimension of warfare.
Are U.S. Army Capabilities for Countering Weapons of Mass Destruction at Risk?
by Thomas C. Westen (Land Warfare Paper 108, September 2015)
In this Land Warfare Paper, Westen notes the increasing chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear (CBRN) capabilities of U.S. adversaries. To focus the development of efforts in response to this growing problem—a problem compounded by current fiscal constraints—the Department of Defense (DoD) recently created a new strategy for Countering Weapons of Mass Destruction (CWMD). This monograph provides a background for viewing the new DoD CWND strategy, describes the risks the Army faces in current and future CBRN threats, identifies how the institutional Army is meeting the DoD CWMD strategy and makes recommendations for the Army and DoD to lower risks.
Innovation and Invention: Equipping the Army for Current and Future Conflicts
by Richard Lim (National Security Watch 15-3, 16 September 2015)
This National Security Watch notes that while history provides numerous examples of human persistence and ingenuity prevailing over a technologically superior enemy, technology remains a critical enabler that allows the U.S. Army to maintain overmatch against its opponents. It faces the challenge of how best—in a fiscally constrained environment—to enhance the capabilities of the current force while sustaining those capabilities for the future force. The multiphase strategy to meet and overcome the challenge includes three elements. First, the Army is pursuing an innovation strategy to enable its units to maintain technical overmatch for the near term. Second, the Army is pursuing product improvement programs to maintain technical overmatch in the mid-term. Finally, to counter future threats before they materialize, thereby ensuring overmatch for the far term, the Army is pursuing an invention strategy to leverage emerging, leap-ahead technologies.
Integrating Landpower in the Indo–Asia–Pacific Through 2020: Analysis of a Theater Army Campaign Design
by Benjamin A. Bennett (Land Warfare Paper 107, May 2015)
In this Land Warfare Paper, the author examines and analyzes this rebalance in four areas of campaign design: land domain, campaign framework, structural reorganization and an overview of the Campaign Assessment Process. With its elevation to a four-star headquarters, U. S. Army Pacific is supporting this new theater army campaign design and in doing so is driving Army activity in the region in accordance with national security objectives and the Army Chief of Staff’s vision for the force.
Malaysia, Singapore and the United States: Harmony or Hegemony?
by Richard Lim (National Security Watch 15-2, 13 May 2015)
In this National Secuirty Watch, the author outlines three factors of the Malaysia–Singapore relationship that comprise the crux of the United States’ interests in the region: the shipping lanes in the waterways that surround the countries; the significant Muslim populations of both countries and the moderate version of Islam promoted by Malaysia; and the key role that Singapore plays in balancing the interests between the United States and China. The partnership of these two countries is a testimony to the triumph of pragmatism and cooperation in spite of ethnic divisions, long-running resentments and the presence of religious extremism and is a model for productive collaboration between countries around the world. To leverage strong trade relationships, collaborate with Muslim communities, combat Islamic extremism and forge a more productive relationship with China, it is critical that the United States maintain separate, bilateral and tailored relationships with Malaysia and Singapore.
American Landpower and the Two-war Construct
by Richard D. Hooker, Jr. (Land Warfare Paper 106, May 2015)
In this Land Warfare Paper, the author allows that many people view this two-war construct as outdated and hawkish. However, he argues that with the international global system functioning as it does now, with so many major states dependent on and allied to one another, the United States must be prepared to enter multiple conflicts simultaneously should allies require it. Without the ability to do so, American credibility and reliability will inevitably be called into question, ties with allies will be weakened or dissolved entirely and American security as a whole will be endangered. The reduction of the defense budget in recent years has led to a military that, through no fault of its own, could not now adeptly and successfully engage in simultaneous wars. The relatively small budget adjustments that are required to allow the Army to recover from this marginalization are an easy price to pay for a military to be capable of reassuring allies and deterring potential adversaries
Building Readiness to Sustain Global Responsiveness and Regional Engagement
(Defense Report 15-2, April 2015)
This Defense Report delineates the requirement for an Army methodology that can more efficiently and responsively project unit readiness based on leading indicators. As the velocity of instability accelerates worldwide and global demands for the Army are increasing, associated reductions in fiscal resources place a premium on creating unit readiness more efficiently. However, the inability to apply leading indicators contributes to the inefficient application of resources, reducing the Army’s ability to respond with ready units. This paper argues for the application of Demand-Fulfillment methodology based on leading indicators for manning, equipping, training, services and infrastructure and funding.
The Army Operating Concept 2020–2040: Winning in a Complex World
(Defense Report 15-1, April 2015)
This Defense Report outlines the challenging future operating environment that the Army faces. This environment is unknown, unknowable and constantly changing. To meet these challenges, the Army has created the new AOC to address prompt conduct of joint operations to prevent conflict, shape security environments and win wars. The AOC describes how the future Army forces will operate to accomplish campaign objectives and protect U.S. national interests by winning at the tactical, the operational and—most important— the strategic level of war.
Strategic Landpower in the 21st Century: A Conceptual Framework
by Brian M. Michelson (Landpower Essay 15-1, March 2015)
This Landpower Essay articulates, from a national perspective, why Strategic Land Power is important, defines it in a broad strategic context, offers a way to gauge its relative strength and provides a brief discussion regarding what constitutes adequate SLP for a nation. According to the author, defining SLP itself is fairly straightforward; defining adequate SLP for any nation is not. The United States and many other nations are in the process of making difficult decisions regarding expenditures. They will determine by analysis or by indifference what they require in terms of SLP, how this capability will be applied and to what extent it will be resourced.
U.S. Army Regionally Aligned Forces: An Effective Way to Compensate for a Strategy/Resources Mismatch
by Thomas C. Westen (National Security Watch 15-1, 27 February 2015)
This National Security Watch describes the Army’s central role in national defense. Despite large reductions in manpower, it is still the provider of the preponderance of forces deployed in support of the National Defense Strategy, addressing enduring joint force requirements, new security risks and theater security cooperation demands, while simultaneously maintaining the ability to mitigate future unknown risks. The Army has purposely developed the regionally aligned forces (RAF) policy as the most efficient and effective way to meet command requirements. However, even with the RAF policy, the growing strategy/resources mismatch is on track to create an unacceptable level of risk. Reduction of Total Army endstrength must be analyzed again, as current plans are calling for a reduction so drastic that the Army will not be able to perform essential duties without unnecessary risks to its Soldiers and to the nation.
Operations Research and the United States Army: A 75th Anniversary Perspective
by Greg H. Parlier (Land Warfare Paper 105, January 2015)
In this Land Warfare Paper, author Greg H. Parlier describes how the British pioneered what they called Operational Research (OR) during World War II by combining civilian scientific talent with operational staffs, thereby synthesizing the art of warfare with the application of the scientific method. The U.S. Army is currently experiencing a postwar drawdown at the conclusion of more than a decade of conflict. OR is at a crossroads and its current trajectory must be properly aligned with what really needs to be done. The author derives enduring principles and applies them to recent combat experience, describes opportunities for applying strategic analytics to contemporary challenges, addresses organization and professional development and offers several recommendations to resurrect, restore, renew and transform OR for the Army.
★ ★ ★ 2014 ★ ★ ★
Terrorists, Insurgents and the Lessons of History
by Richard Lim (National Security Watch 14-2, 22 December 2014)
This National Security Watch calls on the nation’s military leaders to examine the lessons readily available in military history to handle contemporary difficulties effectively. In 2002, the United States declared that its primary national security objective was to disrupt and destroy the global reach of terrorist organizations. Now, more than ten years later, and after an estimated $1 trillion in wartime spending, terrorist groups are as active and deadly as ever; the violent rise of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) is forcing leaders to reassess their strategies. A thorough examination of past efforts undertaken against terrorist organizations, while it cannot necessarily provide clear-cut answers for today’s problems, can outline basic tenants that must be heeded should the United States wish to defeat ISIS and similar organizations.
Afghanistan and Korea: Lessons from History
by Douglas Cho, PhD (Landpower Essay 14-3, November 2014)
In this Landpower Essay, author Douglas Cho, Ph.D., draws on his experiences growing up in South Korea and serving in the South Korean navy. He notes that South Korea in the mid-20th century was economically impoverished and politically and militarily unstable, just as Afghanistan currently is. Now, decades later, because of the insightful groundwork and long-term successful strategies and policies implemented by the U.S. military, South Korea is economically flourishing and has secured internal peace and security. Today, as the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) are preparing to pull out of Afghanistan, there is no sense of security and peace to justify any kind of realistic optimism regarding Afghanistan’s near future. The key failing, the author argues, is that where South Korean indigenous forces were empowered to take competent control of the running of their country, Afghans have been given no such adequate empowerment. This means that the time, efforts and enormous fiscal commitments spent in that country have been little more than considerably ill-advised investments. If the United States and ISAF wish to succeed in stabilizing Afghanistan and allowing her people to competently govern their own country, they must look to the lessons learned in the establishment of South Korea.
Professional Soldier Athlete: The Cornerstone of Strategic Landpower's Human Dimension
by Deydre S. Teyhen (Land Warfare Paper 104, October 2014)
This Land Warfare Paper states that the cornerstone of landpower’s historical and future success hinges on the human dimension, particularly physical and mental resilience. The military has struggled with negative impacts of poor sleep, activity and nutrition throughout history. The current costs to readiness, recruitment, retention and health require a comprehensive strategy to ensure that the military is able to meet the future security needs of our nation. The author outlines the importance of health for both the military and the nation’s youth and provides recommendations to enhance readiness and resilience for the future military force.
Conventional Forces and Special Operations Forces: Interoperability and Interdependence
by William B. Ostlund (Landpower Essay 14-2, October 2014)
This Landpower Essay posits that interoperability and shared training venues set the conditions for seamless interoperability and interdependence in a complex, ever-changing and politically charged operating environment while preparing for decisive elections and drawing down forces. Ostlund's background enables him to understand, appreciate and seek a synergy where disparate contributors (individuals and units) complement one another in achieving unity of effort and decisive outcomes rather than competing with one another to get credit for real or perceived effects achieved.
Creating a Total Army Cyber Force: How to Integrate the Reserve Component into the Cyber Fight
by Christopher R. Quick (Land Warfare Paper 103W, September 2014)
This web-exclusive Land Warfare Paper advocates training servicemembers in the RC to respond to cyber threats and to assist in building cyber defenses for the Army. Because these servicemembers are already in place and would not require mobilization and because many of them bring cyber capabilities from their civilian jobs, giving them an education in cyber warfare would be an economical investment that would bolster the Army’s capability. Building an “operational cyberspace reserve” would provide agile and adaptive leaders and would integrate experienced network operators who use innovation and initiative to support Army and U.S. Cyber Command requirements.
Profile of the U.S. Army—A Reference Handbook (2014/2015 Edition)
(ILW Special Report, July 2014)
This ILW Special Report is a user-friendly reference book for people familiar with the Army and an easy-to-read introduction for family members, civilian employees, industry partners 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.
Unified and Joint Land Operations: Doctrine for Landpower
by John A. Bonin (Land Warfare Paper 102, August 2014)
This Land Warfare Paper looks at U.S. military undertakings in various locations during and since World War II—such as Normandy, Korea, Vietnam, the Persian Gulf, Kosovo and current operations in the Middle East. Using these examples as a backdrop, the author discusses the positive and negative methods of unified and joint operation doctrine implementation seen in recent history. The subsequent development of the theories of joint doctrine is a result of lessons learned in setbacks and in achievements. Looking to the future, the U.S. Army has reevaluated its doctrine for the employment of landpower; that reevaluation is comprehensively set out in a newly completed series of 15 Army Doctrinal Publications, which together provide the requisite guidance needed for successful land control operations.
Special Operations Forces in Unlit Spaces: Understanding the World's Dark Spots in the Context of SOF Operational Planning
by Joseph A. Royo (Land Warfare Paper 101, June 2014)
This Land Warfare Paper begins by examining how certain characteristics of unlit spaces impact SOF operational planning. These five characteristics—pertaining to aspects such as the stability of a nation’s governing body, internal infrastructure and overall development—occurring in varying degrees and combinations, are described in detail in the Framework for Unlit Spaces. Depending on the nature of any given unlit space, SOF operational planning and engagements will be affected in different ways and will have to be conducted with malleable methods. Finally, the author looks at two case examples—Afghanistan and Somalia—to demonstrate how the political environments in conjunction with the physical environments during two different time periods present altogether different planning considerations. Because of the potentially wide variance of circumstances within unlit spaces, SOF planners must fully understand the physical and cultural nuances of their operational environments if they wish to conduct successful operations.
The Resilient Defense
by Raymond A. Millen (Land Warfare Paper 100, May 2014)
This Land Warfare Paper begins with a discussion of the three pillars of the German Elastic Defense—dispersal and depth, establishment of the vacant battlefield and tactical agility—and the details of the practical application of this tactical military philosophy. Having laid a thorough foundation with his explanation, he shows how this German defense method can be suitably and beneficially adapted to meet the needs of both the Army and the Marines in the reorientation of operations that comes hand in hand with the drawdown in the Middle East. This study will be of particular interest to strategic landpower advocates.
The Army in Cyberspace
by Frank L. Turner II (National Security Watch 14-1, 5 May 2014)
This National Security Watch discusses the new challenges that the Army faces as the cyber domain grows in size and significance. The evolving and expansive nature of the cyber domain has created a complicated virtual environment that exists on a grand scale with complex interdependencies in the land, air, sea and space domains. The Army has made substantial progress developing cyber capabilities, but there is still work to be done to accomplish building the world’s most capable cyber force.
The Emergence of Feral and Criminal Cities: U.S. Military Implications in a Time of Austerity
by Robert J. Bunker (Land Warfare Paper 99W, April 2014)
This Land Warfare Paper considers the nature of the emerging global security environment. With the spread of economic liberalism that gained foothold after the conclusion of the Cold War, one might think that the 21st century is the perfect time for the modern democratic state to be a ubiquitous institution. However, between power vacuums developing in formerly autocratic states and economic troubles becoming more prevalent, the atmosphere of the world is increasingly toxic to the values upheld in Western democracy. With that being the case, nation building, and even city building, is presently beyond the scope of the diminishing resources and capabilities of the American military. Given the restrictions that the Army is facing in coming years, the author suggests limited policy objectives and operations and calls for further discussion of the implications that the changes in global politics demand of American foreign policy.
Cyberspace as a Weapon System
by Christopher R. Quick (Landpower Essay 14-1, March 2014)
This Landpower Essay explains how the environment of cyberspace has become weaponized—numerous actors seeking to gain advantage over the United States through its asymmetric exposure to the cyber domain are already maneuvering and employing the Internet as a weapons platform to achieve their own ends. In light of the pervasive nature of cyberspace and the numerous attacks and exploitations on all types of networks and services with exposure to the Internet, the Army must change the way it views the network from a set of provided services to a weapon system and warfighting platform capable of delivering operational effects across the full spectrum of combat operations. The Army must prepare its Soldiers with the commensurate training and education to operate, defend and maneuver in this environment of continual technological innovation.
★ ★ ★ 2013 ★ ★ ★
Remembering a Sine Wave: A History of Feast and Famine for the U.S. Army
by Frederick J. Kroesen (Special Report, October 2013)
This Special Report conducts a historical survey, beginning with George Washington’s Continental Army and progressing gradually into a discussion of concerns that the Army is currently facing in the 21st century. After every significant military engagement, funding and resources for sustainment of a ready and reliable force have been severely restricted. This has caused a centuries-old pattern of a hollow force and a lack of ability on the Army’s part to meet new challenges swiftly, adequately and economically—both in terms of financial concerns and in Soldiers’ lives. The best course of action, Kroesen argues, would be to learn from past mistakes and to move forward with a renewed and firmly established commitment to ensure the sustained capability of the Army in all future encounters.
Strategizing Forward in the Western Pacific and Elsewhere
by Huba Wass de Czege (Landpower Essay 13-4, October 2013)
This Landpower Essay argues that while there are some correct aspects of the AirSea Battle document, full adoption of its principles could lead to a brittle peace that would have the potential to easily tip into a long and expensive global warfare without winners—and the most undesirable version of a future China. Advocating a movement beyond outdated concepts—concepts that may have been functional and appropriate during the Cold War but are no longer—the author calls for a clearer understanding of warfare in the modern era and a capability of performing realistically and decisively when war does become the last resort in a desperate situation.
Army Adaptation from 1898 to the Present: How Army Leaders Balanced Strategic and Institutional Imperatives
to Best Serve the Nation
by Robert H. Simpson and Mark C. Smith (Land Warfare Paper 98, September 2013)
This Land Warfare Paper looks at the patterns of rising and falling support the Army has received, patterns which have accompanied every war that the United States has seen since the Spanish–American War. While it is natural that with the conclusion of each war support for the military should decrease, it is nonetheless vital that both civilian and military leaders provide for the uninterrupted sustainment of resources that will, at a minimum, allow for the optimal organization, training and equipping of Soldiers. When leaders invest excessive time and effort in changing external strategic policies, internal growth and structure will necessarily suffer. This will leave the Army ill-prepared to face inevitable military challenges, resulting in botched maneuvers that are costly not only in equipment but also in Soldiers’ lives. The authors posit that the strategic and institutional lessons learned from every major encounter that the United States has faced in the past 115 years all demonstrate a need for increased focus on internal Army improvement.
Design, Mission Command and the Network: Enabling Organizational Adaptation
by Todd A. Schmidt (Land Warfare Paper 97, August 2013)
This Land Warfare Paper addresses the unknown nature of the challenges that the Army will face in the coming years. As a result of significant and continual developments in technology, the ability to predict and plan for specific conflicts and encounters is increasingly marginalized. Technology can be used against American forces as well as utilized by them. Thus, the author advocates a cooperative functioning in movement forward among Army Design Methodology, Mission Command and the increasingly large breadth of capabilities provided to the Army in the developing network of the cyberspace world.
Institutionalizing Stability Operations: A Policy Analysis
by Michael Kelly McCoy (Land Warfare Paper 96, June 2013)
This Land Warfare Paper provides a policy analysis on how the U.S. Army can best institutionalize a stability operations capability. Drawing evaluation criteria from Army Doctrine Publication 3-0, Unified Land Operations, three possible policy options are reviewed with a specific focus on the effect of timeliness in the transition between combat and stability operations. The paper concludes with recommendations for future courses of action that should be undertaken in order to insure a proper transition.
Cavalry in the Movement and Maneuver Warfighting Function
by Frederic J. Brown (Landpower Essay 13-3, May 2013)
This Landpower Essay discusses the increasingly varied landscape that our Army faces as methods of modern warfare constantly evolve. The U.S. Army, unique as the nation’s landpower capability, is made up of a racially and religiously diverse population of Soldiers. Within the wider vision of improving training and leadership capabilities within Army culture, this diversity should be leveraged to improve national security in current and future conflicts. In addition to the requirements of organization and equipment that each mission requires, the human element of choosing the best individuals for each mission—with careful consideration of language capabilities, cultural understanding and ethnic origins of each Servicemember—should be a primary focus. As the Army works to face new challenges, two important variations, Special Forces and cavalry, have already evolved to address the expanding uncertainties of an increasingly disparate and turbulent world order.
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