AUSA's Institute of Land Warfare Publishes Two Papers

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

The Association of the U.S. Army published two new reports discussing the importance of force readiness and Army methodologies. Released through AUSA’s Institute of Land Warfare, the publications aim to increase understanding of a particular defense or national security issue.

The first paper, entitled “American Landpower and the Two-War Construct,” by Col. Richard D. Hooker Jr., U.S. Army retired, discusses how force size impacts national security, strategy and readiness.

Hooker argues the need for the U.S. to be ready to enter two conflicts simultaneously, despite calls for drawdown due to budget restraints. Without such preparation, he warns, the possibility of losing credibility and reliability will increase, while ties with allies and American security will be called into question and weakened.

“This strategic balance is all-important. Without it, deterrence falters, options are diminished and global reach is limited,” he said. While many may view the “two-war” construct as outdated, Hooker said experiences in Iraq and Afghanistan and looming dangers currently facing the international community illustrate the need for a two-war construct.

“Critics may deride such thinking as ‘Cold War,’ but history teaches a different lesson,” Hooker said. “We sometimes hear that the days of state-on-state conflict are over. Nothing could be further from the truth, as we see in Ukraine.”

Meanwhile, Army leadership is taking strides in creating methodologies to adapt to increasing demands on the Army and a shrinking force, according to the second ILW publication. Entitled “Building Readiness to Sustain Global Responsiveness and Regional Engagement,” the defense report discusses the need for more efficient and responsive project unit readiness based on leading indicators, including manning, equipping, training, services and infrastructure, and funding.

“A proven private-sector technique to achieve extraordinary process efficiencies and substantial production cost avoidance is a leading-indicator production methodology known as ‘Demand-Fulfillment,’” the report said. According to this methodology, the product is a mission-ready unit and the production manager is the senior commander in concert with the unit commander.

The benefits of this methodology include providing unit commanders and suppliers with increased decision space in which to resolve issues with fulfillment signals, and improved efficiencies which results in significant cost avoidance.

“Given the postwar uncertain fiscal and geostrategic security environment, the Army requires a transformational methodology to efficiently and responsively project Total Force Unit readiness,” the report said. “The Demand-Fulfillment methodology enables the Army to efficiently build unit readiness ‘at best value’ while sustaining effective units for global responsiveness and regional engagement.”

Read the newest ILW publications.