Joint Publication 3-60 describes targeting as a method of selecting and prioritizing targets, matching the appropriate response to them, integrating fires into the operations process, and creating desired effects necessary to achieve objectives. [...] sustainment targeting" misuses the current doctrinal definition of targeting. [...] by using the terms target and targeting beyond their intended use, we actually change the meanings of the words and weaken the understanding of their purpose.
Commentary Logisticians Are Sustainers, Not Targeters by major donaLd a. maCCuish I t is amazing how much terminology is appropriately of selecting and prioritizing targets, matching the and inappropriately used by Army personnel. This appropriate response to them, integrating fires into the is particularly true for the sustainment community. operations process, and creating desired effects neces- Take convoys, for instance. While in Iraq, we called sary to achieve objectives. sustainment convoys “combat logistics patrols,” or The process of targeting helps integrate and synchro- CLPs. The Joint Readiness Training Center at Fort Polk, nize fires with the other warfighting functions (includ- Louisiana, likes to use the term “combat logistics con- ing sustainment). However, synchronizing sustainment voys,” or CLCs. (See Center for Army Lessons Learned in the targeting process and describing the sustainment [CALL] Handbook 08–23.) But wait. I find that neither process as targeting are distinctly different. of these terms is used in doctrine and that the term “logistics package” (LOGPAC) is the preferred term at Pitfalls of Using Targeting With Sustainment the Battle Command Training Program. Sustainment synchronization, unlike targeting, is The Army has always had situations like this. For designed to support friendly forces, not attack enemy instance, a few years ago maneuver units called logistics capability. Both targeting and sustainment are part of functions “man, arm, fix, and fuel.” At the same time, the operations process, but they link into the operations the sustainment community called the same functions process quite differently. For this reason, we should “supply, field services, maintenance, transportation.” stick to existing sustainment terminology rather than misuse the doctrinal terms “target” and “targeting.” The Sustainment Targeting Process Likewise, we do not need to invent a new term by In May 2008, CALL published the Brigade Support calling a synchronization meeting a “sustainment target- Battalion Battle Staff TTP [tactics, techniques, and ing meeting.” procedures] Handbook. Chapter 6 of that handbook is I see three consequences of using the term target- titled “The Sustainment Targeting Process.” The hand- ing in the sustainment planning and synchronization book makes some very good points that are highlighted process. First, “sustainment targeting” misuses the ’s time-and-again in CALL trend analyses. Sustainment current doctrinal definition of targeting. If we misuse units have a tough time synchronizing logistics across the terms associated with targeting to fit sustainment, the brigade combat team (BCT) area of operations. This we run the risk of misusing the original term when it is a valid observation and should be a focus of collective is used in the context of lethal and nonlethal targeting. training events. Where I take issue with the handbook We also confuse other warfighting functions and joint is in the development of new terminology: sustainment and multinational partners by taking a task specifically targeting, sustainment targeting matrices, and sustain- designated in doctrine as a fires function and using ment targeting meeting. The underlying problem with it to describe how the sustainment function operates. creating this new terminology is that it misrepresents Further, a doctrinal process already exists that does not current Army terminology related to targeting. take the current terminology out of context. As stated earlier, CALL trends show that the BCTs have a tough Doctrinal Definitions of Targetin
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