Institute of Land Warfare
The Institute of Land Warfare (ILW) extends the influence of AUSA by informing and educating its members; local, regional and national leaders; and the American public on the critical nature of land forces and the importance of the United States Army. ILW carries out a broad program of activities including the publication of professional research papers, newsletters, background briefs, essays and special reports.
To order ILW publications free of charge, send an e-mail to [email protected] or call 800-336-4570, ext. 4630. Please provide your name, address, daytime number, the title and alphanumeric identifier of the publication you wish to receive and, if you are a member of AUSA, your member number. Please note that the alphanumeric identifiers on some ILW products end with “W”; this means those publications are available only online. For more information, call 800-336-4570, ext. 2627.
Recent ILW & Torchbearer Publications
Is India’s Military Modernization Evidence of an Aggressive National Security Policy?
(Land Warfare Paper 110, October 2016)
In this Land Warfare Paper, Budihas looks back to six years ago when a group of defense policy analysts studied and wrote about India’s status and projected growth. Collectively, these authors claimed that India was increasing its military capacity commensurate with its rising economic power, and they suggested that the United States could influence India to use its modernizing military to support U.S. goals vis-à-vis China. Current evidence, however, in contrast with the events forecasted by these writers, reveals that India has shown neither the political fortitude nor the military capability to prosecute aggressive security strategies. In point of fact, India gives its domestic economy priority over military spending. Ultimately, then, it would be a miscalculation for the United States to rely on India to counterbalance China in the Asia–Pacific.
Profile of the United States Army takes a top-down approach, first describing the Army’s role as a key element in the national security structure and then laying out 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 current operations. Finally, Profile contains a glossary of acronyms and also a series of maps that illustrate locations of current Army combat corps and divisions, Army National Guard divisions and brigade combat teams and Army Reserve direct reporting commands.
The State of the Cavalry: An Analysis of the U.S. Army’s Reconnaissance and Security Capability
(Landpower Essay 16-1, June 2016)
In this Landpower Essay, Major Amos C. Fox calls for an overhaul of Army R&S capability. As it currently stands, the Army is in a position where its ground R&S capabilities are inadequate to conduct their inherent mission. The Army’s global commitments over the past 15 years are largely to blame. However, there are other critical failures exacerbating the problem, including the Army’s approach to training and educating R&S leaders; the manner in which leaders have been allocated to the R&S formations; the absence of division- and corps-level ground R&S capabilities; and disjointed doctrine. The Army must take a deliberate approach to fixing these deficiencies to be able to fight and win during the next ground war.
The Uncertain Role of the Tank in Modern War: Lessons from the Israeli Experience in Hybrid Warfare
(Land Warfare Paper 109, June 2016)
In this Land Warfare Paper, Kim presents a case study of the Israel Defense Forces’ experience during Operation Protective Edge (2014) in order to inform the role of the M1 Abrams by analyzing hybrid threat trends, examining Army force-structure challenges and assessing the relevancy of combined-arms maneuver—in which the M1 Abrams tank is a key element—in the future operating environment. Based on this case study, the author argues that the role of this tank in the Army of 2015–2025 is to provide a mobile and survivable precision firepower platform to execute effective combined-arms operations against a sophisticated hybrid threat in urban and conventional environments. Given the nature of the military profession and the increasingly limited resources provided by our nation to execute combat, the responsibility to properly allocate resources, direct training and develop force structure is great. The Army must consider modernizing its armored platforms with an active armor protection system and improved munitions.
Strategic Readiness: The U.S. Army as a Global Force
(Defense Report 16-3, June 2016)
This Defense Report calls on events in recent military history that demonstrate the serious cost across multiple spheres that occurs in times of shortfalls and capability gaps. As the nature of operations over the past 25 years has forced the military to focus on particular theaters—in Operation Desert Shield, in Operation Enduring Freedom and in Operation Iraqi Freedom—consistent training for rapid contingency operations has fallen too much by the wayside. The pursuit of meeting short-term needs in the midst of conflicts has come at the expense of overall readiness. Now, to reconstitute the expeditionary mindset and capabilities, the Army has initiated Total Army emergency deployment readiness exercises (EDREs) and companion sea deployment readiness exercises (SEDREs) as a core competency to ensure that the Army is strategically ready and responsive. The first SEDRE in several years, involving an entire brigade combat team of the 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), occurred in Jacksonville, Florida, in April 2016.
Delivering Materiel Readiness
(Torchbearer Issue Paper, June 2016)
The 21st century security environment—volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous—presents enormous challenges to the joint force. Future trends forecast a continued migration of the world’s populations to urban areas and megacities, a reemergence of nationalistic and religious fervor, a direct or indirect transfer of technology from governments to terrorist organizations and an extension of conflict into cyber and space domains. Ensuring national security continues to require a whole-of-government approach involving not only the military element of power but also economic, diplomatic and informational elements.
Sustaining the All-Volunteer Force: A Readiness Multiplier
(Torchbearer Issue Paper, April 2016)
This Torchbearer Issue Paper postulates that demand for Army forces is high and requires commensurate levels of readiness. Budget reforms threaten to undermine quality of life compensation—in Soldier pay and retirement, in health care, in Basic Allowance for Housing, in Military Construction and in support for the commissaries—to such a degree that the viability of an AVF in the future is called into question. Readiness requires recruiting and retaining the best and the brightest—fit and resilient men and women of character—to volunteer and serve. The quality of life of Soldiers and those who support them is inextricably linked to readiness; ultimately, these reforms, aimed at maintaining readiness in the short term, have the potential to mortgage the military’s future readiness.
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 ★ ★ ★
AUSA + 1st Session, 114th Congress = Some Good News
(Torchbearer Special Report, December 2015)
This Torchbearer Special Report, in listing a number of AUSA’s particular accomplishments with Congress, demonstrates overall the role that AUSA plays in representing every American Soldier and the dedicated civilians of the Department of the Army. AUSA is a voice for America’s Army, fostering public support of the Army’s role in national security. There is still much work to be done, given today’s volatile national security environment that necessitates a focus on maintaining the readiness of the current force, development of the future force, sustainment of the all-volunteer force and enhancement of existing partnerships among industry, academia and the media. Nevertheless AUSA is pleased to outline the work that has recently been accomplished in working toward all of these goals.
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.
Strategically Responsive Logistics: A Game-Changer
(Torchbearer Issue Paper, October 2015)
This Torchbearer Issue Paper describes the unpredictable current operating environment of increasingly capable enemies who employ conventional and hybrid strategies to threaten U.S. vital interests. More and more, Army formations must have the capability to operate immediately, rapidly and accurately upon arrival into theater, something that cannot be done unless decisions are based on accurate and reliable logistics data. To meet this need, the Army is revolutionizing its logistics system through integration of legacy property, supply and maintenance functions into a single system: Global Combat Support System–Army (GCSS-A). At endstate, all warehouses, supply rooms, motorpools and property-book offices throughout the Total Army—active Army, Army National Guard and Army Reserve—will have the new system. GCSS-Army will enhance not only materiel readiness for the Army but also the readiness of the entire joint force.
The U.S. Army in Europe: Strategic Landpower in Action
(Torchbearer Issue Paper, October 2015)
This Torchbearer Issue Paper begins by focusing on how Russia’s recent actions in Crimea and Ukraine have challenged the resolve of the European Union and NATO. In addition, terrorist attacks in Europe together with significant increases in numbers of refugees from Africa and the Middle East have created extreme conditions of volatility and instability. Moreover, traditional allies in Europe continue to face significant economic and demographic burdens that exert downward pressure on defense budgets. Therefore, strengthening military capabilities and building security capacity necessary for regional stability require sustained and focused engagement. That is precisely what U.S. Army Europe (USAREUR)—as the Army service component command to U.S. European Command—is executing under the framework of its Strong Europe initiative. And in doing so, it is supporting both U.S. and allied interests on the European Continent. The U.S. Army’s presence in Europe in more vital now than it has been since the fall of the Soviet Union.
Rapid Equipping and the U.S. Army's Quick-Reaction Capability
(Torchbearer Issue Paper, October 2015)
This Torchbearer Issue Paper describes how early experiences in Afghanistan and Iraq made it clear that quick-reaction capabilities were needed to complement the standard procurement system with faster and less expensive materiel solutions. As a result, the Rapid Equipping Force (REF) was established to quickly procure and deliver nonstandard, situation-specific solutions that mitigate urgent capability shortfalls. The REF maintains a critical communications loop with the requirements, product producer and end-user communities that helps develop the next iteration of off-the-shelf technologies. Through quick-reaction capabilities, delivered by initiatives such as REF, the Army is adhering to the fundamental tenets of adaptability, innovation and institutional agility contained in its Operating Concept.
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.
Enabling Reserve Component Readiness to Ensure National Security
(Torchbearer Issue Paper, September 2015)
This Torchbearer Issue Paper outlines the growing challenges facing today’s Army: the evolving operational environments, changing global commitments, ongoing funding issues and future force reductions that all require the Army to creatively plan and develop new paradigms to sustain high readiness levels in the Total Army. To maintain this total-force focus, the Army has retained a three-star command devoted to supporting and assisting army National Guard and Army reserve commanders to achieve readiness and reduce postmoblization training time. First Army is a multicomponent-sourced command with the critical mission of partnering with all conventional reserve component units throughout the continental United States, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. It provides advice, assistance and training support to reserve component commanders and Soldiers to build collective readiness through multi-echelon, integrated training at home station and combat training center venues. First Army establishes partnerships with reserve component unit leadership to achieve directed readiness requirements. This enables the Army—via U.S. Army Forces Command (FORSCOM)—to provide combatant commanders with trained and ready forces in support of worldwide requirements. The Army of the 21st century requires agile and flexible forces that are fully integrated in such a way as to leverage and sustain the unique capabilities of both components—active and reserve—in training and in wartime execution. Trained and ready forces across all components are an imperative in this volatile, unpredictable national security environment.
The U.S. Army's Expeditionary Mission Command Capability: Winning in a Complex World
(Torchbearer Issue Paper, September 2015)
This Torchbearer Issue Paper 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
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.
Installations: The Bedrock of America's Army
(Torchbearer Issue Paper, June 2015)
This Torchbearer Issue Paper describes four roles that installations play in ensuring Army readiness: solidifying the Army’s relationship with the civilian world through public and private partnerships; providing the infrastructure and technology to support force projection; undertaking initiatives that promote more resilient and efficient uses of energy; and providing services that ensure a high quality of life for Soldiers, families, DA civilians, veterans and survivors. With the global threats and unprecedented fiscal uncertainty the nation is currently facing, the Army must be able to deter adversaries and signal commitment to allies and partners. This cannot happen without installations that are capable of learning, adapting and innovating to provide unit and individual readiness. To build the installation of the future in this complex environment, Congress must provide full funding in a timely and predictable manner.
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.
The U.S. Army in Motion in the Pacific
(Torchbearer Issue Paper, April 2015)
This Torchbearer Issue Paper describes the complex and uncertain strategic operating environment that America’s Army faces. To meet new challenges with success, senior Army leadership has added two new concepts as core competencies that emphasize the Army’s role in providing options to joint force commanders across a range of operations: first, setting the theater, i.e., establishing a presence with the purpose of increasing capabilities and capacities, and second, shaping security environments, i.e., working to further partner and allied relationships and foster understanding and cooperation. While developing these concepts, leadership has begun investing Army resources in the Indo–Asia–Pacific region. They are emphasizing a whole-of-government focus on the security and prosperity of that region, assigning a four-star general to the area and increasing the force assigned and available to the theater by approximately 40 percent. The Army now has an opportunity—through an innovation called Pacific Pathways—to put its new concepts into practice.
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.
AUSA + 2nd Session, 113th Congress = Some Good News
(Torchbearer Special Report, January 2015)
While noting a number of the positive measures that Congress has taken, such as authorizing educational funding for military children and funding for a number of readiness and modernization programs, “AUSA + 2nd Session, 113th Congress = Some Good News” also outlines several areas in the Fiscal Year 2015 Defense Authorization Act in which Congress failed to address significant challenges. Among other concerns, the report mentions that servicemembers received a pay raise of only 1 percent—less than the rate of inflation—for the second straight year. Most significant, Congress did nothing to prevent the impending sequestration cuts scheduled to begin in 2016. Congress must take action to support the Army’s effort to balance endstrength, modernization, readiness, training, operational activities and Soldier and family program funding.
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.
Force 2025 and Beyond: The U.S. Army's Holistic Modernization Strategy
(Torchbearer Issue Paper, January 2015)
This Torchbearer Issue Paper describes today’s security environment as complex and defined by unpredictability and the increasing momentum of human interaction. As technology proliferates, enemies will have greater access to weapons of mass destruction and sophisticated technical capabilities. The key to success is two-fold: leader development and maintenance of technological overmatch capabilities against likely antagonists. Regrettably, the Army is at risk of losing its present technological advantage unless its Science and Technology Enterprise receives focused strategic investments in technologies and the technical work force.
★ ★ ★ 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.
Strategic Landpower in NATO: Vital for U.S. Security
(Torchbearer Issue Paper, October 2014)
This Torchbearer Issue Paper outlines the purpose of NATO—namely, to safeguard the freedom and security of the 28 nations that are a part of the Alliance. LANDCOM is the newest single service command of the Alliance’s military arm. LANDCOM’s assigned personnel are regionally engaged across Europe, guided by three priorities to enhance strategic landpower: land forces operational capability, headquarters operational readiness and/or land advocacy. This enables Allies to provide a critical hedge against the unpredictable future that Europe is now facing, resultant from the recent Russian seizure of Crimea. Europe will continue to require a strong commitment from the United States, including responsive, adaptive and regionally engaged forces to maintain security and stability.
The U.S. Army in Korea: Strategic Landpower at the Forward Edge of Freedom
(Torchbearer Issue Paper, August 2014)
This Torchbearer Issue Paper begins with a discussion of the unpredictability and danger of the North Korean regime. As long as it continues to operate as it does, the vital interests of South Korea and the stability of the Asia-Pacific region as a whole will be constantly threatened. Since 1950, the United States’ alliance with South Korea has been in transformation to meet the mutual security interests of both nations. The relationship continues to grow and evolve, standing as a critical deterrent to the dynamic North Korean threat, supporting regional engagement with partners and enhancing responsiveness to contingencies through rotational deployments and multinational training exercises. Eighth Army is an integral part of USFK, constituting the largest military contribution to the alliance and providing the majority of American servicemembers stationed in South Korea.
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.
Soldier for Life
(Torchbearer Issue Paper, June 2014)
This Torchbearer Issue Paper describes the quality of the American Army, an all-volunteer force whose premier status is due to the sacrifice of the Soldiers—the centerpiece of the Army. Given the scope of their sacrifice, Soldiers have a reasonable right to expect that adequate resources will be available to help them make their eventual transition from military to civilian life. Soldier for Life (SFL), a program established by the Army, works to provide opportunities for Soldiers who are in transition. SFL does not provide new services to transitioning Soldiers; it synchronizes the existing resources, making them more accessible to the individual Soldier, retired Soldier, veteran and family member. Without efforts such as this, the quality of America’s all-volunteer Army could suffer; it is a quality underpinned by the faith and trust of these servicemembers that their country will honor their commitment, selfless service and sacrifice by helping them to succeed in transitioning to civilian life.
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.
U.S. Army Integrated Air and Missile Defense Capabilities: Enabling Joint Force 2020 and Beyond
(Torchbearer National Secuirty Report, May 2014)
This Torchbearer National Security Report remarks on the ease with which American adversaries can command air and missile weapons in their endeavors against the United States. As these weapons are both relatively inexpensive and widely available, they can be employed to significantly limit coalition freedom of action and cannot be easily countered. Historically, U.S. IAMD forces have been critical in the protection of deployed forces and preservation of coalition unity. Considering the rapidly evolving threat environment and the numerous trends that pose a challenge to assured access and freedom of action for the joint force now and in the future, it is helpful to look back at the progress already achieved by IAMD forces—a reflection that should also serve as an instigation for continued IAMD development.
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 web-exclusive 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.
Comprehensive Soldier and Family Fitness: Building Resilience, Enhancing Performance
(Torchbearer Issue Paper, March 2014)
This Torchbearer Issue Paper reflects briefly on the missions that the Army has accomplished over the past 12 years. Looking ahead to the post-drawndown period and the certainty that the nation will face future conflicts, Soldiers, their families and Army civilians must remain competent, strong of character and committed to the Army profession. Comprehensive Soldier and Family Fitness (CSF2) is an Army program designed to ensure that members of the Army community continue to thrive in their professional and personal lives. Taking a holistic approach to personal wellness—combining emotional, social, spiritual, family and physical elements to build overall resilience and enhance performance—CSF2 will continue to be a pillar of Army culture and a cornerstone of the campaign to sustain the all-volunteer force in the future.
Defending the Homeland: The Chemical Biological Radiological Nuclear Response Enterprise
(Torchbearer National Security Report, February 2014)
This Torchbearer National Security Report discusses in detail active component, National Guard and Reserve contributions to and forces responsible for homeland defense. Currently, the joint force has a much greater capability to respond to a catastrophic event in the homeland than it did just a decade ago. However, there are several areas, as the report outlines, in which further improvements remain to be made. Fiscal challenges are compromising the ability to provide adequate manpower. Other challenges include equipment standardization and compatibility and shortfalls in areas such as ground transportation, maintenance, fuel distribution and supply support. Given the immensity of the responsibility that the United States has to her citizens, it is vital that these challenges be resolved. In the event of a catastrophic domestic CBRN event, it is imperative that the forces comprising the Response Enterprise be properly structured, manned, trained and resourced to conduct their mission efficiently and effectively.
AUSA + 1st Session, 113th Congress = Some Good News
(Torchbearer Special Report, February 2014)
While noting a number of the positive measures that Congress has taken, such as averting nearly half of the anticipated sequestration cuts for this fiscal year (FY) and protecting critical elements of the military compensation package, this Torchbearer Special Report also outlines several areas in the FY 2014 Defense Authorization Act in which Congress failed to address significant challenges. Among other concerns, the report mentions that servicemembers received a pay raise of only 1 percent—less than the rate of inflation—and working-age retirees saw their annual cost-of-living-adjustment reduced by a percentage point, costing them more than $5 billion over the next 10 years (beginning 2015). It also brings attention to the shortfall of more than $30 billion facing the Department of Defense in FY 2014 and the $79 billion in readiness and modernization shortfalls facing the Army over the next five years. Congress must support the Army’s effort to balance endstrength, modernization and readiness—especially in the next five years as the sharp, sudden impact of sequestration cuts creates short-term vulnerabilities.
★ ★ ★ 2013 ★ ★ ★
The Army's Organic Industrial Base: Providing Readiness Today, Preparing for Challenges Tomorrow
(Torchbearer Issue Paper, December 2013)
This Torchbearer Issue Paper briefly outlines the crucial role that AOIB has had in the past in ensuring Army readiness, as it provides materiel and equipment—from small arms, explosives and cannon tubes to trucks and tanks. As the Army shifts focus from wartime production to sustainment operations, it must ensure that critical capabilities are preserved in a way that will allow rapid expansion when needed during peacetime. The AOIB must sustain those capabilities to remain effective and able to meet future requirements. Indeed, ensuring that it is able to do so supports the principles set out by the Chief of Staff, Army, in his third Strategic Priority—A Ready and Modern Army.
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.
A Crisis in Military Housing: Basic Allowance for Housing Under Attack
(Torchbearer Alert, October 2013)
This Torchbearer Alert demonstrates the irrationality and injustice of placing the nation’s financial burdens on the shoulders of Soldiers. The quality of housing has improved in recent years under new programs and initiatives; the nation owes it to her servicemembers and their families, who have already given so much, to ensure that they continue to be provided with good homes. If sequestration is allowed to stand as it is, this provision will no longer be a certainty. In addition to the responsibility owed to current Soldiers, it is important to remember that in an all-volunteer force there must be adequate incentives to attract, retain and fairly compensate new recruits. Providing quality military housing is a necessary and profitable investment.
U.S. Army South: Fostering Peace and Security in South America, Central America and the Caribbean
(Torchbearer Issue Paper, October 2013)
This Torchbearer Issue Paper discusses the challenging conditions and security issues of this region, such as unequal wealth distribution, corruption, transnational organized crime and natural disasters. For over a century, the Army has demonstrated its commitment to building relationships with the partners in this region. The return on the nation’s small investment in this relationship has been substantial. U.S. efforts have prevented open conflict, but there are nonetheless persistent tensions that remain because of the challenging conditions and security issues. Focused regional security cooperation is paramount to confronting security challenges before they mature into direct threats. As the Army shifts its focus after protracted wars in the Middle East, it is vital to remember that U.S. security depends on the Army’s ability—an ability that results from the support of joint, interagency and intergovernmental organizations—to continue supporting national security objectives in South America, Central America and the Caribbean through proactive engagement and enduring partnership. Timely and predictable funding together with leveraging half-century-old enduring relationships between the U.S. Army and its partner nations’ militaries are keys to fostering peace and security in this region.
Addition Through Subtraction: Empowering the Soldier by Lightening the Load
(Torchbearer Issue Paper, October 2013)
This Torchbearer Issue Paper calls attention to how the Army is working to mitigate one of the side effects of the advances in communication technology for Soldier and squad—additional batteries that add weight and consume more space in combat loads. The Soldier Power portfolio is an ongoing acquisition success story that leverages research and development partnerships, lessons learned and evaluation and testing at the Network Integration Exercises. In this complex and dynamic global security environment, coupled with an uncertain fiscal environment, it is critical that the Army continues to invest wisely in innovation and technologies that will help the nation’s Soldiers.
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.
The Joint Pacific Alaska Range Complex: Winning the Future Fight
(Torchbearer Issue Paper, August 2013)
This Torchbearer Issue Paper discusses the Joint Pacific Alaska Range Complex (JPARC), the Defense Department’s largest training venue in Alaska. The JPARC integrates all domains—land, air, sea, space and cyber—to provide unparalleled opportunities to bring disparate capabilities into a coordinated and comprehensive environment. Alaska sits at the center of gravity for the entire Asia–Pacific region, enabling the U.S. military to project strategic landpower—Army, Marines and special operations forces—across the theater that became a major focal point of U.S. defense policy with the January 2012 release of the Obama administration’s “Sustaining U.S. Global Leadership: Priorities for 21st Century Defense.” Enabling large-scale joint, interagency, intergovernmental and multinational training not available elsewhere, the JPARC’s size and location allow for realistic deployment and employment of joint forces to meet tactical and operational requirements and for the exercise of existing war plans for the defense of the Asia–Pacific theater of operations.
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.
Strategic Mobility: Enabling Global Responsiveness for America's Force of Decisive Action
(Torchbearer National Security Report, July 2013)
This Torchbearer National Security Report explores the future of the strategic responsiveness/mobility challenge. It discusses the necessity of strategic landpower, the status of the nation’s existing fleet of strategic-lift platforms and the human dimension of readiness to conduct any mission along the spectrum of conflict. It describes how Army doctrine and joint thinking have already been developed to cope with the volatile nature of this century’s diverse security challenges and explains how the Army is working to bridge existing mobility capability gaps. Finally, it details some of the transformative efforts that are necessary to enable the joint force to fulfill the nation’s high expectations in accordance with the latest defense strategic guidance.
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.
Déjà Vu: Servicemembers' earnings are under attack—again
(Torchbearer Issue Paper, June 2013)
This Torchbearer Issue Paper discusses some of the ways that these budget cuts are harming the livelihoods of those individuals who have volunteered to make a career of their service to the nation. In the world of healthcare, military retirees are currently facing a serious financial setback, as Congress is considering authorizing massive fee increases for TRICARE users. Servicemember pay is also under attack; the proposed 1 percent pay raise for military personnel in 2014 would be the lowest raise since 1958. This is only one of a number of ways that monetary compensation might become increasingly less attractive for potential volunteers. In addition to proposed fee hikes in TRICARE and negative impacts on Servicemember pay, the Defense Commissary Agency is also facing massive budget cut requirements that will force it to close stores and lay off employees, many of whom are military spouses. Unless effective efforts are made to stop and reverse these trends, a life of military service will become increasingly unattractive; there will be fewer incentives for potential volunteers to choose such a life, and the security of our nation will decline with the strength and efficacy of our Army.
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.
The U.S. Army in the Pacific: Assuring Security and Stability
(Torchbearer National Security Report, April 2013)
This Torchbearer National Security Report discusses how the Army’s trained and ready forces in the Asia–Pacific region contribute to the joint force by preventing conflict, shaping the environment and winning decisively if necessary, assuring security and stability. As World War II ended, U.S. Army leadership proved to be the cornerstone of renewed peace and prosperity in the Pacific. Today, the region has reemerged as one of the world’s most militarily significant and challenging. The 2012 U.S. defense strategic guidance therefore directed that the joint force rebalance its efforts toward the Asia–Pacific and reinvest in its continued security. The Army must receive balanced support to continue providing invaluable resources to and enabling many contingency response options for the joint force.
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.
AUSA + Second Session, 112th Congress = Some Very Good News
(Torchbearer Special Report, January 2013)
While noting a number of the positive measures that Congress took in this regard, such as providing sufficient personnel for the Army to respond to the demands of the nation’s security and authorizing a military pay raise that keeps pace with inflation, this Torchbearer Special Report also outlines a few areas in which Congress failed to include some important proposals in the Fiscal Year 2013 Defense Authorization Act. Among other concerns, the Flyer stresses that more consideration must to be afforded to the needs of veterans, sufficient funding must be provided for adequate modernization initiatives of equipment and more progress is needed to provide military families with affordable and quality housing. Congress must support the Army’s effort to balance endstrength, modernization and readiness.
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 ourlines 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.
Capability Set Production and Fielding: Enhancing the U.S. Army's Combat Effectiveness
(Torchbearer Issue Paper, October 2012)
This Torchberer Issue Paper presents the problem that servicemembers have faced in recent years of inadequate connectivity on the battlefield. Although advances in technology are constantly improving methods of communication, these are not always available to servicemembers who, as a result, face interoperability issues that interfere with unified land operations and cause delays in their ability to access the full range of information about their areas of operations. That is about to change. Starting in October 2012, the Army will being to equip deploying brigade combat teams with Capability Set (CS) 13, the Army’s first integrated package of radios, satellite systems, software applications, smartphone-like devices and other network components.
Yellow Ribbon Reintegration Program: Building Communities of Readiness
(Torchbearer Issue Paper, October 2012)
This Torchbearer Issue Paper elucidates efforts being made by the Department of Defense to help members of the National Guard and the Reserve successfully navigate the long process of reintegration after deployment. The National Defense Authorization Act of 2008 established the Yellow Ribbon Reintegration Program (YRRP) to formalize and support initiatives across the reserve component in nationwide deployment-cycle training and support programs to ease transitions for servicemembers and their families.
U.S. Army Operational Testing and Evaluation: Laying the Foundation for the Army of 2020
(Torchbearer National Security Report, October 2012)
This Torchbearer National Security Report outlines the success and significance of the Agile Capabilities Life Cycle, its associated Network Integration Evaluations process and the Capability Set Management construct. All of these—through tests and evaluations by which servicemembers can give constructive feedback on the operations of technologies and equipment—allow the Army to modernize its information systems. Such a network can also enable the necessary distribution of information and help to provide for overmatch against adversaries. Important in the further development of these network tools are continued participation and feedback from current Soldiers, efforts to maintain an understanding of the perspective of industry partners providing necessary materials and, most vital, continued reliable sources of funding.
Profile of the U.S. Army—A Reference Handbook (2012 Edition)
(ILW 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.
Earned Deferred Compensation: Proposed Military Earnings Reforms Do More Harm Than Good
by Nicholas R. Krueger (National Security Watch 12-4, August 2012)
This National Security Watch examines the potential changes to deferred compensation earned by U.S. Soldiers. The author discusses 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.
Linking Latin America and the Pacific: A Strategy for the Long Term
by Douglas J. Schaffer (National Security Watch 12-3, 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.
A New Equipping Strategy: Modernizing the U.S. Army of 2020
(Torchbearer National Security Report, June 2012)
This Torchbearer National Security Report discusses many of the Army’s modernization priorities as it looks to the third decade of the 21st century. To provide U.S. combatant commanders with land forces that have the capability, capacity and diversity to succeed in this environment, the Army must continuously assess and adjudicate three foundational imperatives: endstrength/force structure, readiness and modernization. The Army must balance these three elements to prevent conflict, shape the environment and win decisively. To develop the right force design and mix to execute these imperatives, an equipping strategy for the Army of 2020 must acquire and modernize equipment in ways that provide the best force for the nation within the resources available. The Army’s acquisition and modernization approach acknowledges the healthy tension of balancing short-term (zero to two years), mid-term (two to eight years) and long-term (more than eight years) equipping challenges to support a strategic ground force that is superior, credible and rapidly deployable.
Modernizing LandWarNet: Empowering America's Army
(Torchbearer National Security Report, May 2012)
This Torchbearer National Security Report examines the ways in which LandWarNet will improve the Army’s current network, which is fragmented into many smaller networks that have a variety of standards, systems and pathways. LandWarNet addresses this complex issue by instituting a single, standards-based network. The Army’s strategy for end-to-end network modernization has five high-level objectives: operationalize LandWarNet; dramatically improve cybersecurity posture; improve operational effectiveness while realizing efficiencies; enable joint interoperability and collaboration with mission partners; and recruit and retain an agile workforce to support an expeditionary Army.
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.
U.S. Army Space Capabilities: Enabling the Force of Decisive Action
(Torchbearer National Security Report, May 2012)
This Torchbearer National Security Report discusses how the Army is inextricably linked to space-based capabilities, which are involved with all aspects of the “prevent, shape and win” framework that guides the Army, both in current conflicts and in its future vision. As the Department of Defense’s new strategic guidance highlights, the Army will be part of a joint force that is smaller and leaner but more agile, flexible and technologically enabled. To mitigate complex operational risks and assure landpower dominance now and in the future, the Army relies on a technological backbone built on space-based capabilities and force structure. Preserving and expanding these capabilities will be required to keep the Army the force of decisive action.
First Army: Training for Today's Requirements and Tomorrow's Contingencies
(Torchbearer Issue Paper, April 2012)
This Torchbearer Issue Paper examines First Army’s role in helping ensure the readiness of the total Army to advise and assist in training all Army National Guard and Army Reserve Soldiers in the continental United States during premobilization periods to meet combatant commanders’ requirements worldwide. The most significant challenge for today’s operational reserve is to sustain readiness to provide combatant commanders with adaptive units that are capable across the full range of military operations. Much of First Army’s priority of effort since 9/11 has been to conduct mobilization and demobilization operations in support of Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom/Operation New Dawn, training more than 750,000 personnel in support of these and other named contingency operations.
Third Army: Empowering Theater Responsiveness by Synchronizing Operational Maneuver
(Torchbearer Issue Paper, March 2012)
This Torchbearer Issue Paper examines the expertise and experience exhibited by Third Army, which could very well be the model for other service component commands as well as U.S. allies. Third Army, USF-I and the joint team conducted a successful operation to retrograde and reposture a significant amount of forces and immense stocks of equipment from Iraq. Third Army—as an Army Service Component Command—has been and will remain vital to the U.S. Army’s ability to conduct its Title 10 responsibilities to conduct prompt and sustained combat operations on land. Applying, maturing and translating the lessons learned from the past decade will be a vital effort as the Army prepares for its role as part of Joint Force 2020 in an increasingly uncertain and complex strategic environment.<
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
(National Security Watch 12-2, 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.
Breaking the Faith
(Torchbearer Alert, February 2012)
This Torchbearer Alert summarizes the Defense Department’s Fiscal Year 2013 budget proposals to increase health care fees and reconsider the structure of the military retirement system. For many military retirees under age 65, annual fees for TRICARE Prime would triple or quadruple by 2017; TRICARE Standard and Extra would also implement new enrollment fees and increase the size of families’ deductibles. For military retirees over age 65, the administration proposes hefty new annual enrollment fees for TRICARE-for-Life. Copays for pharmaceuticals would also increase substantially. Further, the administration proposes the creation of a commission to recommend cost-effective changes to the military retirement system. This commission would have authority similar to the BRAC process, effectively limiting elected officials’ involvement. The paper emphasizes that these ideas would do very little to alleviate the nation’s fiscal crisis; however, they would severely impact the well-being of those who have already risked and sacrificed more than their fair share, and they could have serious consequences for force readiness.
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.
AUSA + 1st Session, 112th Congress = Some Good News
(Torchbearer Special Report, January 2012)
This Torchbearer Special Report briefly describes the major objectives AUSA supported in the first session of Congress and what actions were taken for each. In passing the 2011 Budget Control Act, Congress acknowledged the national budget shortfalls while also attempting to maintain the military’s readiness in uncertain times and an ongoing war in Afghanistan. This publication examines the112th Congress’s successes and failures in authorizing some important proposals supported by AUSA.