New ILW publications focus on expeditionary force, innovation

New ILW publications focus on expeditionary force, innovation

Thursday, October 1, 2015

The Association of the United States Army’s Institute of Land Warfare has released two new publications."The U.S. Army’s Expeditionary Mission Command Capability: Winning in a Complex World" (Torchbearer Issue Paper, Sept. 2015) states the imperative that the Army maintain strategic and operational flexibility to deter and operate in multiple regions simultaneously.Demand for Army capabilities and presence continues to increase across combatant commands in response to emerging contingencies.Expeditionary maneuver becomes the norm as most of the Army is based in the United States (e.g., there are only two brigade combat teams forward stationed).Strategic responsiveness – units ready to deploy, transition to operations rapidly, function over wide areas, import a smaller logistics footprint – is an imperative.Whether the primary mission is combat, humanitarian assistance, counterinsurgency or other, soldiers and leaders need a robust and varied set of capabilities, especially mission command.The core medium of expeditionary mission command is the network. The Army’s current plan will create a robust, versatile network through redesign and modernization efforts.Stretching from Army installations, to training facilities around the world, to the operational theater and the soldier on point, the envisioned network supplies the infrastructure, systems, applications and tools necessary for all Army activities (training, missions and daily business).Putting the best expeditionary mission command capabilities in the hands of soldiers and partners requires timely and predictable investment: significant funding for basic science and technology; more advanced research and development; acquisitions; and sustainment.*************"Innovation and Invention: Equipping the Army for Current and Future Conflicts" (National Security Watch 15-3, Sept. 16, 2015) examines the Army’s multiphase strategy to concurrently pursue innovation, product improvement and invention to ensure that it remains the world’s most advanced ground force today and in the future.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, the Army is pursuing an invention strategy to leverage emerging, leap-ahead technologies to counter future threats before they materialize, thereby ensuring overmatch for the far term.These and other AUSA Institute of Land Warfare publications are available online at http://www.ausa.org/ilw and can also be obtained by calling (800) 336-4570, Ext. 4630, or by e-mailing a request to [email protected]