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                                                                                                                                                                        Standard Form 298 (Rev. 8-98)
                                                                                                                                                                              Prescribed by ANSI Std Z39-18
                                                                                        Headquarters, Department of the Army
                                                                                                  Prepared by
            Lieutenant General                                                   US Army Command and General Staff College
             William M. Steele                                                       Volume LXXXI — July-Aug 2001, No. 4
            Commandant, USACGSC                                                         milrev @
                                                                                            Professional Bulletin 100-01-7/8
         Brigadier General
        David H. Huntoon Jr.                                  CONTENTS
   Deputy Commandant, USACGSC
                                                                2   Training and Developing Army Leaders
            Military Review Staff                                          by Lieutenant General William M. Steele, US Army;
       Colonel Lee J. Hockman                                              and Lieutenant Colonel Robert P. Walters Jr., US Army
            Editor in Chief
Lieutenant Colonel Jonathan J. Smidt
           Managing Editor
                                                              10    Airmechanization
                                                                           by Brigadier General David L. Grange, US Army, Retired;
Lieutenant Colonel Hector J. Acosta                                        Lieutenant Colonel Richard D. Liebert, US Army Reserve; and
   Editor, Latin American Editions
                                                                           Major Chuck Jarnot, US Army
        Major Larry Seefeldt
          Production Editor                                            Is Army Deployability Overemphasized?
                                                                           by David Isenberg
          Christy Bourgeois
          Patricia H. Whitten
            Vaughn Neeld
                                                              22    Asymmetric Warfare
    Books and Features Editor                                 23    Strategic Asymmetry
           D. M. Giangreco                                                 by Steven Metz
            Design Editor
                                                              32    Deciphering Asymmetry’s Word Game
       Charles A. Martinson III                                            by Lieutenant Colonel Timothy L. Thomas, US Army, Retired
           Art and Design
          Winona E. Stroble                                   38    Asymmetry and Adaptive Command
             Webmaster                                                     by D. Robert Worley
          Patricia L. Wilson
      Administrative Assistant                                45    US Army Decisionmaking: Past, Present and Future
               Consulting Editors                                          by Colonel Christopher R. Paparone, US Army
                Colonel Luiz Peret
            Brazilian Army, Brazilian Edition
    Lieutenant Colonel Carlos Mezzano
      Chilean Army, Hispano-American Edition                  54    Firepower
    Lieutenant Colonel Hernan Vazquez
     Argentine Army, Hispano-American Edition                 55    Tactically Responsive Firepower
        By Order of the Secretary of the Army:                             by Major Tracy Ralphs, US Army Reserve
                 Eric K. Shinseki
             General, United States Army
                                                              65    Operational Firepower: the Broader Stroke
                   Chief of Staff                                          by Colonel Lamar Tooke, US Army, Retired

               JOEL B. HUDSON
                                                              72    Leadership
             Administrative Assistant to the
                Secretary of the Army 0113003                 73    US and British Approaches to Force Protection
Military Review’s Mission is to provide a forum for                        by Lieutenant Colonel Richard R. Caniglia, US Army
the open exchange of ideas on military affairs; to
focus on concepts, doctrine and warfighting at the            82    Developing the Warrior-Scholar
tactical and operational levels of war; and to support
the education, training, doctrine development and
                                                                           by Major Scott Efflandt, US Army; and Major Brian Reed, US Army
integration missions of the Combined Arms Center
and Command and General Staff College (CGSC).
Professional Bulletin 100-99, Military Review, appears              Almanac
bimonthly. This publication presents professional
information, but the views expressed herein are those of
                                                              90       Reassessing Strategy: A Historical Examination
the authors, not the Department of Defense or its                          by Lieutenant Colonel Dominic J. Caracillo, US Army
elements. The content does not necessarily reflect the
official US Army position and does not change or              91       ULUS-KERT: An Airborne Company’s Last Stand
supersede any information in other official US Army
publications. Authors are responsible for the accuracy
                                                                           by Sergeant Michael D. Wilmoth, US Army Reserve; and Lieutenant
and source documentation of material they provide.                         Colonel Peter G. Tsouras, US Army Reserve, Retired
Military Review reserves the right to edit material. Basis
of official distribution is one per 10 officers for major
commands, corps, divisions, major staff agencies,
garrison commands, Army schools, Reserve commands             97       The Promise of e-Commerce to Defense: The Road to Savings
and Cadet Command organizations; one per 25 officers
for medical commands, hospitals and units; and one
                                                                           by J. Michael Brower
per five officers for Active and Reserve brigades
and battalions, based on assigned field grade officer
                                                              98       Short-Range Air Defense in Army Divisions: Do We Really Need It?
strength. Military Review is available on microfilm from                   by Colonel Charles A. Anderson, US Army
University Microfilms, Ann Arbor, MI 48106, and is
indexed by the Public Affairs Information Service Bulletin.         Review Essay
Military Review, The Professional Journal of the United
States Army (US ISSN 0026-4148) (USPS 123-830), is            103      Six Presidents and China
published bimonthly by the US Army CGSC, Fort                              by Lewis Bernstein
Leavenworth, KS 66027-1254. Paid subscriptions are
available through the Superintendent of Documents for         104      Post-Cold War Priorities
$30 US/APO/FPO and $37.50 foreign addresses per
year. Periodical postage paid at Leavenworth, KS, and                      by Major John A. Nagl, US Army
additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send
address changes to Military Review, The Professional          107 Book Reviews contemporary readings for the professional
Journal of the United States Army, C/O Superintendent of
Documents, P.O. Box 371954, Pittsburgh, PA15250-7954.         111 Letters to the Editor
From the Editor
    Do you ever feel as if we have it backward — as if we’re talking about
missile defense before assessing threats, choosing weapon systems before
nailing down a strategy, losing officers when we need them most? If you feel
unnerved, this issue of Military Review might confirm your suspicions but, at
the same time, remind you that good minds are taking on the challenges.
    In the opening selection, Lieutenant General Mike Steele discusses findings
from the Army Training and Leader Development Panel’s recent surveys of
officer attitudes and concerns. A follow-on article in the September-October
2001 issue will discuss specific recommendations and directions that officers
can expect to see in coming months, even as the noncommissioned officer
panel is under way here at Fort Leavenworth and around the Army.
    Whether the manifestation is suitcase nukes, computer network attacks
or low-tech truck-bombs, the featured theme in this issue is contemporary and
compelling: what do we do about terrorism and other forms of asymmetric
warfare? Authors discuss asymmetric combat from different perspectives,
ultimately offering solutions ranging from concepts to doctrine to training.
    How the Army prepares to fight and win war is changing to deal with such
emerging threats. Deployability is at the heart of many initiatives, and authors
address that imperative from different angles as well. We need to be lighter to
get overseas in time — do we need forces and equipment even lighter than
currently projected to assure mobility once in theater? What about fire support
during the vulnerable entry phase? Battleships that can steam 500 miles in 24
hours and obliterate the landscape from 25 miles offshore now lounge around
the pool at the Old Ships’ Home.
    Organizations and systems aside, it will be Army leaders who assure victory,
and the institution must support field commanders with both intellectual
preparation and operational guidance. In particular, during peacekeeping they
must understand social dynamics and clearly grasp the relationship between
force protection and mission accomplishment — all underwritten by effective
decisionmaking procedures.
    It’s been a long, hard, rewarding ride. I retire at the end of June, and this is
my last editorial for Military Review. Colonel Melanie Reeder comes aboard
from I Corps and Fort Lewis, Washington, to take the reins. Keep the faith.
             General Shinseki chartered the Army Training and Leader Development
          Panel (ATLDP) to study training and leader development in light of Army
          Transformation and the new operational environment. As part of the Trans-
          formation process, the panel was asked to identify the characteristics
          and skills required for leaders of the transforming force. General Shinseki also
          tasked the panel to examine the current systems for training and leader
          development to see what changes would provide the best leaders for our Army
          and the best Army for our nation. The study was released 25 May.

T    HE 21ST CENTURY brings new challen-
    ges for Army leaders. Information is now a
doctrinal element of combat power, and technolo-
                                                       to solve complex problems. Changing missions and
                                                       increased urban and complex terrain call for self-
                                                       aware leaders who can operate and adapt across the
gies associated with information offer the potential   full spectrum of operations. In today’s operational
to change the way the Army wages war. Technol-         environment, tactical actions by lieutenants, ser-
ogy that provides real-time information throughout     geants, corporals and their commanders can have
our combat formations is seen by many as our edge      strategic consequences with lasting impact on Na-
against industrial-age armies. But technology alone    tional policy. These demands highlight the need to
cannot provide the dominance required to win. The      assess our current training and leader development
centerpiece of our formations remains quality lead-    doctrine and programs to determine whether they
ers and their soldiers . . . not technology.           will provide the leaders required for increasingly
   Technology is only a part of the equation. The      complex battlefields that are anticipated over the
more complex portion is leadership. The key to vic-    next 25 years.
tory is the combination of information-age technol-       More than a decade after the Cold War ended, the
ogy and capable leaders who enable the United          unitary, exclusive focus on fighting the Soviet Union
States Army to dominate adversaries on full spec-      is gone. US strategy and interests mandate an Army
trum battlefields. Armed with better situational un-   trained and ready for major theater wars, smaller-
derstanding, leaders can make bold, quick decisions    scale contingencies and peacetime military engage-

2                                                                       July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
                                                                   TRAINING AND LEADER DEVELOPMENT
ments. The foundation of this full spectrum cred-
ibility is our ability to dominate land combat. Our       Threats have ready access to
demonstrated warfighting ability enhances deter-          off-the-shelf technologies that can
rence by allowing the National Command Author-
ity to deter conflict and, when deterrence fails, to
                                                          confound our units and inflict
enter and dominate combat on our terms. Adversar-         casualties as much for political
ies know they cannot win conventional, high inten-        effect as for tactical advantage.
sity clashes with US forces, so the threat to Army        Battles will migrate into urban and
forces is increasingly unconventional and asymmet-        complex terrain where US standoff
ric. Threats have ready access to off-the-shelf tech-     weapons offer few advantages and
nologies that can confound our units and inflict ca-      the proximity of noncombatants
sualties as much for political effect as for tactical     limits US firepower.
advantage. Battles will migrate into urban and com-
plex terrain where US standoff weapons offer few          Training. The doctrine’s training principles and
advantages and the proximity of noncombatants lim-        training management process have served the Army
its US firepower. The elusive threat in close, com-       well. Today, a primary criticism concerning train-
plex terrain will challenge our leaders and their sol-    ing doctrine is simply that leaders are not follow-
diers as never before.                                    ing the principles or the training management pro-
   Technology continues to change the way the             cess. Increased taskings, high personnel tempo,
Army trains and operates. Increasingly lethal weap-       excessive operational pace and undermanned units
ons and breakthroughs in command and control              seriously degrade unit efforts to apply the doctrine.
improve US forces’ effectiveness, but not uniformly.      Solid training based on mission essential task lists
Legacy, digital and Interim forces operating in the       (METL) competes with requirements for installation
same area challenge commanders and staffs to com-         and community support, nonmission training and
bine their capabilities effectively. US forces lack a     last minute taskings. The Red, Amber, Green train-
technological monopoly; even adversaries without          ing management process blurs and collapses when
a research and development capability can purchase        units are tasked regardless of their cycle. Unit train-
remarkably sophisticated systems. Army leaders in         ing is top driven, not determined at the lowest tac-
this technology-rich environment must be able to          tical level, and the quarterly training brief has devi-
adopt emerging capabilities and adapt them to their       ated from its doctrinal intent as a training contract
rapidly changing operational environment.                 with higher headquarters.
   Success in full spectrum operations depends on            Changes in the operational environment, the Na-
leaders who consistently make better and faster de-       tional Military Strategy and force structure require
cisions than their opponents, which means battle          the Army to reevaluate training doctrine and tech-
command education and training must evolve and            niques. Fundamentally sound principles from cur-
expand. Materiel approaches and technological ad-         rent doctrine, such as standards-based METL train-
vances are only tools that leaders leverage. Com-         ing, assessments and feedback for leaders, units and
manders must visualize an expanded battle space;          the Army, should continue to provide the founda-
describe it clearly; direct soldiers, units and systems   tion for the next generation of training doctrine.
to accomplish their missions; and lead from the              Like current training doctrine, Army leadership
front. Understanding, confidence and trust between        doctrine has roots more than a decade old. In a
commanders and subordinates enable everyone to            leader development study directed by General
exploit opportunities, even in the absence of orders.     (GEN) Carl E. Vuono and completed in April 1988,
Battle command in this new operational environ-           GEN Gordon R. Sullivan, then Deputy Comman-
ment requires relevant operational and educational        dant of the US Army Command and General Staff
experiences to train and develop leaders. The emerg-      College, concluded that the Army has two primary
ing question is whether current Army training and         leader development tasks. First, the Army must de-
leader development systems are adequate to produce        velop leaders who can prepare the force for war.
leaders for these information-age battlefields.           Second, the Army must develop leaders who can
   The Army established its current training doctrine     apply doctrine to win battles and campaigns. A key
in 1987 to meet Cold War needs and described it           recommendation of the Sullivan Study was a for-
in Field Manual (FM) 7-0 (25-100), Training the           mal Army leader development system. This system
Force, and FM 7-10 (25-101), Battle Focused               now includes a leader development model that

MILITARY REVIEW    l   July-August 2001                                                                        3
                                                          The Army has always adopted a forward-looking
                Our leaders and their                  attitude, and periodically we have sought self-
 soldiers must be at the center of our                 reflection and self-assessment to measure our capa-
  Transformation efforts. Otherwise,                   bilities against future requirements. This has oc-
  we will remain focused on technol-                   curred about once per decade over the past century.
                                                       Examples include Elihu Root’s reforms in 1902, the
ogy, platforms and weapon systems                      National Defense Act of 1920, Lieutenant General
  at the expense of Transformation’s                   (LTG) Leonard T. Gerow’s and LTG Manton S.
      center-of-gravity . . . our people.              Eddy’s boards, GEN William E. DePuy’s and GEN
  Using technology, our leaders can                    Paul F. Gorman’s reforms, GEN Don Starry’s ini-
dominate full spectrum battlefields,                   tiatives, GEN Vuono’s training principles and
    and developing those leaders is                    training management process, and the Sullivan
         the best preparation for an                   Study. Such introspection characterizes a true pro-
                     uncertain future.                 fession, and today’s Army welcomes such self-
addresses the importance of institutional training        On 1 June 2000, the Chief of Staff, US Army,
and education, operational experience and self-        (CSA), GEN Eric K. Shinseki, directed the Com-
development. Common doctrine-based standards for       manding General, US Army Training and Doctrine
development and evaluation, such as officer Mili-      Command (CG, TRADOC), to convene an Army
tary Qualification Standards and soldier manuals are   panel to review, assess and provide recommenda-
central features of today’s Army Leader Develop-       tions for developing and training our 21st-century
ment Model.                                            leaders. The CSA designated CG, TRADOC, as the
   An Army looking toward the future must deter-       executive agent for the study and subsequently des-
mine the best ways to train and develop leaders for    ignated the CG, US Army Combined Arms Center,
full spectrum operations. From peacekeeping to pre-    as the study director. GEN Shinseki chartered the
paring for war, our Army asks a great deal of lead-    Army Training and Leader Development Panel
ers. As missions demand more of leaders, our train-    (ATLDP) to study training and leader development
ing and leader development challenges increase.        in light of Army Transformation and the new op-
How should we adapt to these challenges?               erational environment. While Transformation’s

4                                                                      July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
US Army

                                                           “Soldiers are the centerpiece of our formations.”
                                                           Elements of the 92d MP Company respond to a mob in Kosovo.

          Changing missions and increased urban and complex terrain call
          for self-aware leaders who can operate and adapt across the full spectrum
          of operations. In today’s operational environment, tactical actions by
          lieutenants, sergeants, corporals and their commanders can have strategic
          consequences with lasting impact on National policy.
          warfighting concepts, doctrine, force structures and      GEN (Retired) Frederick M. Franks—our senior
          materiel solutions have received most attention to        mentor—provided the panel with advice and direc-
          date, the panel’s review shifted our focus to lead-       tion. The integration team provided analytic, plan-
          ers, soldiers and units as the “centerpiece of our for-   ning and logistic support. The Red Team provided
          mations.” As part of the Transformation process, the      real-time, critical review of the panel’s process and
          panel was asked to identify the characteristics and       findings. The panel’s analytic process was thorough,
          skills required for officer, noncommissioned officer      concentrating on the specified and implied tasks di-
          (NCO) and warrant officer leaders of this trans-          rected by the CSA and CG, TRADOC. Members
          formed force. GEN Shinseki also tasked the panel          used comprehensive surveys, focus groups, personal
          to examine current systems for training and leader        interviews and independent research to compile data
          development to see what changes would provide the         for analysis. Study groups traveled around the world
          best leaders for our Army and the best Army for           and interviewed more than 13,500 Army leaders and
          our nation.                                               their spouses. Most of those surveyed were lieuten-
             For the commissioned officer portion of the study,     ants, captains and majors.
          the ATLDP task organized four study groups, an               The ATLDP used a disciplined process to deter-
          integration team and a Red Team. The study groups         mine issues, collect data, form conclusions and
          comprised senior NCOs and company and field               make recommendations. Detailed mission analysis
          grade officers serving throughout the Army. Three         and investigation of the issues became the basis of
          study groups assessed the unit, institution and self-     survey instruments and field interviews. The broad
          development pillars of the Army’s Leader Devel-           sample from soldiers across the Army lends ultimate
          opment Model. A fourth study group examined               credibility to the panel’s conclusions and recom-
          Army culture as it relates to officer development,        mendations. Input from the Army was informative,
          service ethic and retention. Senior officers, NCOs,       candid and heartfelt. As expected, leaders identified
          civilian experts from industry and academia, and          many strengths and weaknesses in our present

          MILITARY REVIEW    l   July-August 2001                                                                       5
                                                       undisciplined operational pace and an OER system
        The ATLDP used a disciplined                   and application yet to be accepted by our officer
 process to determine issues, collect                  corps. Further, lieutenants want to be platoon lead-
    data, form conclusions and make                    ers and lead soldiers, not serve in captain staff
    recommendations. Detailed mis-                     positions for which they are not trained. They are
                                                       disappointed because they are rushed through de-
sion analysis and investigation of the                 velopmental leadership positions and often do not
  issues became the basis of survey                    have the opportunity to master tactical and techni-
  instruments and field interviews.                    cal leadership skills. When junior officers are
    The broad sample from soldiers                     quickly processed through key developmental po-
     across the Army lends ultimate                    sitions, their expectations of leading soldiers are cut
credibility to the panel’s conclusions                 short. Unmet expectations and insufficient contact
       and recommendations. Input                      with battalion and brigade commanders reduce job
    from the Army was informative,                     satisfaction. Without early, quality tours leading sol-
                 candid and heartfelt.                 diers, junior officers seriously consider other career
                                                       opportunities—a retention concern for the Army.
programs. Foremost among our strengths were the           Officer Education System. The OES does not
strong sense of service and commitment to the Na-      train and educate officers in the skills they need for
tion and Army, the value of operational and educa-     full spectrum operations. Schools should meet
tional experiences, the benefit of leadership oppor-   Army-directed accreditation and be staffed with our
tunities and recognition that our combat training      most professionally qualified intructors educating
centers (CTCs) remain the crown jewels of Army         our least qualified officer students. The new opera-
training and leader development. The revealed          tional environment emphasizes the need for joint op-
weaknesses include an undisciplined operational        erations. This translates to a necessity for joint edu-
pace; lack of senior-subordinate confidence and        cation. Our OES provides Joint Professional
contact; micromanagement; personnel manage-            Military Education (JPME) Phase I during the Com-
ment; the Officer Efficiency Report (OER); valid-
ity of the current Officer Education System (OES);
currency of training standards; resources for home
station and CTC training; outdated training aids,
devices, simulations and simulators (TADSS); and
the lack of a sound training and leader development
management system. The panel energetically dis-
cussed these and other issues and determined that
several require immediate attention. They are so
important and the need for change so significant,
we considered them strategic imperatives. A brief
synopsis of each follows.
   Army culture. There is a strong relationship be-
tween Army culture and the quality of training and
leader development programs. Army culture must
operate routinely within an acceptable band of tol-
erance between what the Army expects of its lead-
ers and what leaders expect from the Army. Any
change that widens the gap between Army beliefs
and practices threatens readiness, soldier and unit
training, and leader growth. That widening gap be-
tween beliefs and practice leaves our Army culture
out of balance. One pressure on the acceptable band
of tolerance is micromanagement. Junior officers
need opportunities to develop; they need com-
manders who trust them and are willing to under-
write mistakes. Additional tensions arise from the

6                                                                        July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW

US Army

                 10th Mountain Division
                 soldiers line up on the
                 tarmac to deploy (again).

          A primary criticism concerning training doctrine is simply that
          leaders are not following the principles or the training management pro-
          cess. Increasing taskings, high personnel tempo, excessive operational pace
          and undermanned units seriously degrade unit efforts to apply the doctrine.
          Solid training based on METL competes with requirements for installation
          and community support, nonmission training and last minute taskings.
          The Red, Amber, Green training management process blurs and collapses
          when units are tasked regardless of their cycle.
          mand and General Staff Officer Course, but access      tionally, units cannot execute home station training
          to the critical joint education provided during JPME   in accordance with Army training doctrine because
          Phase II is limited. The OES must adapt to meet        of undisciplined application of that doctrine and re-
          the needs of the transforming Army and the reali-      source shortages. Our training system must be re-
          ties of the operational environ-
          ment. Largely untouched since the
          end of the Cold War and progres-
          sively underresourced during
          downsizing, the OES is not coor-
          dinated with Army needs. The
          OES requires a new approach that
          focuses each school on a central
          task and purpose; promotes officer
          bonding, cohesion, trust and life-
          long learning; links schools hori-
          zontally and vertically; synchro-
          nizes educational and operational
          experiences; and educates officers
          to common standards.
             Training. Army training doc-
          trine is fundamentally sound but
          must be adapted to reflect the new
          operational environment. Addi-

          MILITARY REVIEW     l   July-August 2001                                                                  7
                                                      to improve home station training. Finally, the
         Using technology, our leaders                Army must recapitalize, modernize, staff and re-
   can dominate full spectrum battle-                 source the CTCs to provide full spectrum, multi-
 fields, and developing those leaders                 echelon, combined arms training and leader devel-
 is the best preparation for an uncer-                opment experiences.
   tain future. The ATLDP has taken a                    Systems approach to training. We must return
                                                      to standards-based training, the strength of Army
 self-generated, introspective review                 readiness during post-Vietnam reforms. Standards
   of our training and leader develop-                served our Army well as we transformed from Viet-
     ment programs. The entire Army                   nam to the Army of Excellence that fought Desert
 participated in the officer portion of               Storm. Standards-based training can do the same for
    the study to provide credible con-                our transforming Army today. While standards have
    clusions and recommendations. A                   been the basis for developing training, assessing per-
  similar process will review warrant                 formance and providing feedback, the systems ap-
officer and noncommissioned officer                   proach designed to document and publish training
               programs this summer.                  standards has atrophied. The Army lacks training
                                                      and education publications and standards for its
vitalized. Training doctrine needs to be updated,     Legacy and Interim forces. Without documented,
home station training improved and CTCs recapi-       accessible and digital standards, readiness among
talized and modernized. Training doctrine—FM 7-       our soldiers, leaders and units will falter and endan-
0 (25-100) and FM 7-10 (25-101)—must adapt to         ger battlefield success.
account for the new operational environment. This        Training and leader development model. The
training doctrine must also be nested with doctrine   existing leader development model is outdated, and
in FM 3-0 (100-5), Operations, and FM 6-22 (22-       there is no training model. The Army needs a model
100), Army Leadership. In the meantime, command-      that clearly shows leaders, staffs and outside agen-
ers and units must adhere to existing training doc-   cies how training and leader development are inter-
trine, principles and practices to help reduce        related and mutually supporting. This training and
operational pace and discipline training manage-      leader development model must emphasize Army
ment. The Army must provide commanders with           culture; mandate standards for soldiers, leaders and
sufficient resources, including improved TADSS,       units; provide feedback to leaders, units and the

8                                                                      July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
                                                                            TRAINING AND LEADER DEVELOPMENT
Army; allow for self-development; balance opera-
tional and educational experience; and be founded                Any change that widens the gap
on sound training and leader development prin-                   between Army beliefs and practices
ciples. The model should produce self-aware, adap-               threatens readiness, soldier and
tive leaders, and trained and ready units. By focus-
ing institutional education, guiding field training and
                                                                 unit training, and leader growth.
advocating self-development, the model will de-                  That widening gap between beliefs
scribe a lifelong learning paradigm. It should also              and practice leaves our Army culture
promote a mature management process that continu-                out of balance. One pressure on the
ally addresses training and leader development is-               acceptable band of tolerance is
sues and provides feedback for the CSA.                          micromanagement. Junior officers
   Training and leader development manage-                       need opportunities to develop;
ment process. The Army has no management sys-                    they need commanders who
tem for training or leader development, and with-                trust them and are willing to
out one, we risk losing sight of the reasons for                 underwrite mistakes.
change. An iterative, collaborative and comprehen-
sive management process is needed to measure
progress, adjust priorities and apply resources. Ini-            tance and distributed learning programs for self-
tially, this process should provide a quarterly CSA              development.
decision forum to build momentum, interest and en-                  Leaders and soldiers must be at the center of our
thusiasm for these programs throughout the Army.                 Transformation efforts. Otherwise, we will focus on
   Lifelong learning. Army culture underwrites                   technology, platforms and weapon systems at the
leaders’ commitment to lifelong learning through a               expense of Transformation’s center of gravity . . .
balance of educational and operational experiences,              our people. Using technology, our leaders can domi-
complemented by self-development to fill knowl-                  nate full spectrum battlefields, and developing those
edge gaps. To be a learning organization that sup-               leaders is the best preparation for an uncertain fu-
ports this lifelong learning the Army must:                      ture. The ATLDP has taken a self-generated, intro-
   l Provide training, education, standards and                  spective review of our training and leader develop-
products for leader development.                                 ment programs. The entire Army participated in the
   l Provide doctrine, tools and support to foster               officer portion of the study to provide credible con-
lifelong learning.                                               clusions and recommendations. A similar process
   l Provide balanced educational and operational                will review noncommissioned officer and warrant
experiences supported by self-development.                       officer programs this summer. The officer study re-
   l Develop and maintain a web-based Warrior                    vealed the seven strategic imperatives outlined
Development Center that publishes standards, train-              above. Detailed discussion, conclusions and recom-
ing and education publications, doctrinal manuals,               mendations regarding each imperative will be fea-
assessment and feedback tools and provides dis-                  tured in the next issue of Military Review.

                 Lieutenant General William M. Steele is the study director for the Army Training and Leader
              Development Panel. He is the commanding general, US Army Combined Arms Center and Fort Leav-
              enworth, Kansas. His career includes six tours (more than 12 years) in the US Army Training and
              Doctrine Command (TRADOC), during which he addressed training and leader development issues.
              He has commanded at every level from company through division and Army major command. His
              command and staff positions include commanding general, US Army Pacific, Fort Shafter, Hawaii;
              director for operations, J3, US Atlantic Command, Norfolk, Virginia; commanding general, 82d Air-
              borne Division, Fort Bragg, North Carolina; deputy commandant, US Army Command and General
              Staff College, Fort Leavenworth; assistant division commander, 8th Infantry Division (Mechanized),
              US Army Europe and Seventh Army, Germany; assistant commandant, US Army Infantry School,
              Fort Benning, Georgia; executive officer to the commanding general, TRADOC, Fort Monroe, Vir-
              ginia; commander, 1st Brigade, 82d Airborne Division, Fort Bragg; and commander, 2d Battalion
              (Airborne), 504th Infantry, 82d Airborne Division. His article “Army Leaders: How You Build Them;
              How You Grow Them” was published in the August 1992 Military Review.
                 Lieutenant Colonel Robert P. Walters Jr. is aide-de-camp for the commanding general, US Army
              Combined Arms Center and Fort Leavenworth. He received a B.A. from the University of Maryland,
              an M.P.A. from Golden Gate University and an M.A. from Webster University. He is a graduate of
              the US Army Command and General Staff College. He has served in various command and staff
              positions in the United States, Korea, Persian Gulf, Haiti and Bosnia.

MILITARY REVIEW    l   July-August 2001                                                                             9
   Tactical and operational       Superior mobility must be achieved if we are to surprise our oppo-
maneuverability need not        nent, select the terrain on which we are to fight and gain the initiative.
be constrained to two dimen-    There is no alternative. If we are slow in movement, awkward in ma-
sions if forces are light       neuver, clumsy in deployment—in a word, not mobile—we can expect
enough for transport by         to be forestalled, enveloped or constrained to launch costly frontal
Army helicopters and Air        attacks against an enemy advantageously posted.
Force C-130s. Does Trans-                               — Infantry in Battle, The Infantry Journal, Washington DC, 1939
formation need to expand
conceptually within the third
dimension of tactical war-
fare? Does Transformation
                                T      RANSFORMATION IS A TIME for developing new concepts,
                                       organizations and capabilities for dealing with adversaries and
                                maintaining relevance with our national security strategy. In concert with
need to shrink materially       the other US Armed Forces, the Army should have rapid global reach
to field airmechanized ve-      for conducting major theater wars, smaller-scale contingencies and
hicles? While the authors       peacetime military engagements. The current geopolitical environment,
describe a future force of      effects of globalization, critical regional resources, vulnerable trade routes
vehicles even smaller than      and continued economic growth require an Army that can access landmass
those the Army is now con-      interiors and resolve a situation quickly and decisively with tailored over-
sidering for the Interim and    match. All this must be done while operating from exterior lines, a re-
Objective Forces, Isenberg’s    quirement no other country has on the scale of the United States.
sidebar warns that when you        To be strategically deployable, the Transformed Army must maximize
need heavyweights, you’d        critical airlift to move heavy, medium and light force packages anywhere
better have them.               in the world rapidly. This transformed force must optimize the syner-
                                gistic use of US Army and US Air Force (USAF) systems for immedi-
                                ate operational maneuver regardless of enemy strategies to deny use of
                                airfields, seaports and forward bases. To have tactical mobility in all
                                types of terrain, forces must have fast-moving, protected vehicles and a
                                vertical lift capability. A force today must have multipurpose systems
                                for versatility, organizational flexibility to act freely throughout the area
                                of operations and adaptability to immediately move from peace support
                                operations to combat. It is unadvisable to depend on only one method
                                of operation, which the enemy has been studying to counter.
                                   During the Cold War the US National Military Strategy (NMS) cen-
                                tered on a policy of containment, which required robust forces for-
                                wardly deployed in Europe and Asia. Extensive basing with well-
                                developed interior lines and mature infrastructure characterized US
                                force disposition. Mobilization and methodical phased deployment fo-

                                                                           July-August 2001    l   MILITARY REVIEW

cused on sending troops to stored equipment sites to support a defen-
sive doctrine. Rapid deployment was a relatively low strategic priority.
Without the influence of two superpowers, regional stability has de-
creased since the end of the Cold War. Irregular forces, rogue states,         Army Transformation is
terrorist groups and transnational criminal organizations have found           focused on deploying a combat
the environment ripe to exploit. In response, US forces have conducted         brigade via C-130 aircraft.
operations from humanitarian assistance to peacekeeping, to smaller-           Interim and Objective Forces will
scale contingencies—all while maintaining readiness for major conflict —       be lighter than legacy brigades
despite fiscal constraints and a massive reduction in force structure.         but are equipped with combat
   Today’s requirements demand the ability to project forces rapidly           vehicles that provide more
worldwide with an overmatch capability throughout the spectrum of              mobility, lethality and protection
conflict. This means operating almost exclusively from exterior lines          than current Army light forces.
with versatile, substantial, joint forces capable of swift offensive action.   However, as envisioned, they
Potential adversaries recognize our dependency on secure ports and             will rely on secured international
airfields along with the time required to build combat power. It is            airports, have no forced-entry
unlikely that US forces will be allowed Desert Storm buildup luxuries          capability and employ traditional
in future conflicts. Dangerous geopolitical and technological trends,          two-dimensional maneuver
along with antiaccess weapons such as long-range missiles and weap-            warfare.
ons of mass destruction, demand an extended-range, power-projection,
forced-entry capability.
   The US Navy and Air Force strike capability, along with the littoral
reach of the US Marine Corps, provides rapid projection of US forces,
a vital component of the NMS. Projecting decisive Army
land power also depends on the Navy and
Air Force. Current Army force structure,
built to defend against a Soviet invasion
of Europe, has extremely heavy divisions
that are difficult to project or extremely
light forces that lack mobility, lethality
and protection. US Army Chief of Staff
General Eric K. Shinseki set a bold new
course to correct the too-heavy, too-light
force structure. His Transformation initia-
tive is designed to field medium-size
forces that have sufficient mobility, lethal-
ity and protection, and are light enough to
be projected quickly into the theater. This
vision will close the gap in Army land-
power projection. Shinseki set specific
goals of projecting a brigade-sized combat
team worldwide in 96 hours and an entire
division in 120 hours. These tough standards
will require new paradigms and creative
   For Army Transformation to remain rel-
evant, it must be integrated into Joint Vision
2020 based on dominant maneuver, preci-
sion engagement, focused logistics and force
projection, supported by information superi-
ority and quality leadership. This Transfor-
mation is structured with three forces:

MILITARY REVIEW   l   July-August 2001                                                                     11
                                          l   A sustained, recapitalized Legacy Force.
                                           l An Interim Force using available technology.
                                           l An Objective Force equipped with technological breakthroughs.
                                           Army Transformation is focused on deploying a combat brigade via
                                        C-130 aircraft. Interim and Objective Forces will be lighter than legacy bri-
                                        gades but are equipped with combat vehicles that provide more mobility,
                                        lethality and protection than current Army light forces. However, as en-
        The M113LW has about the        visioned, they will rely on secured international airports, have no forced-
  same internal space as a LAV-III      entry capability and employ traditional two-dimensional maneuver war-
and, being tracked, superior cross-     fare. This current Transformation model does not take advantage of the
  country and urban mobility. Both      unrestricted use of space. It lacks local responsiveness, tactical flexibil-
      vehicles can mount the same       ity and operational depth, and limits the commander’s options. Trans-
    weapon systems, including the       formation forces should be shaped not only for strategic deployability
   105mm cannon armored turret.         to international airports but also for night landing on austere airstrips or
The band tracks for the M113LW          airdropping mechanized forces with protection. Ideally, this force should
 increase the road speed over the       be capable of helicopter transport for speed and tactical flexibility. This
    stock M113 and make the ride        capability takes advantage of the synergistic effects of maneuver, pre-
   smoother and quieter although        cision fires and force protection, capitalizing on the US lead in infor-
  the LAV-III has a slight advan-       mation superiority. A commander can rapidly seize the initiative and
       tage in both areas. The low-     concentrate forces from different points against enemy vulnerabilities.
pressure footprint of the M113LW
    reduces mine vulnerability. The     IBCTEuropeanAirmechanizedModels
  M113LW uses existing M113A3s             The Army selected the heavy-wheeled light armored vehicle (LAV)-
      with only minor modifications,    III to equip the interim brigade combat team (IBCT). The LAV-III
     resulting in the low acquisition   weighs about 38,000 pounds, combat equipped, which is at the extreme
              cost of $250,000 each.    payload envelope of the C-130, limiting landings to long, improved run-
                                        ways. No US helicopter can sling load it. As with most wheeled armored
                                        vehicles, the LAV-III is very tall, barely clearing the roof of a C-130,
                                        which rules out airdrop. The LAV-III armored gun version is entirely
                                        too tall for the C-130. When the LAV-III add-on armor is mounted, the
                                        LAV-III weighs 43,000 pounds, which precludes C-130 transport alto-
                                           The extra weight of the LAV-III is a consequence of the typical ar-
                                        rangement of most wheeled armored cars. US Tank-Automotive and
                                        Armaments Command studies found that armored cars are about 28
                                        percent heavier and larger than comparable tracked vehicles. Large wheel
                                        assemblies, multiple drive shafts and the numerous gearboxes involved
                                        in all-wheel-drive running gear—not additional armor protection—
                                        account for the extra weight. The LAV-III’s heavy weight is divided
                                        among eight wheels, resulting in high ground pressure and dramatically
                                        increased vulnerability to mines. Compared with heavy tracked M1
                                        Abrams tanks and M2 Bradley infantry fighting vehicles (IFVs), the
                                        LAV-III is far easier to maintain, has much faster road speed, runs dra-
                                        matically quieter and burns less than 25 percent of the fuel. However,
                                        these advantages are only marginal when compared to light tracked ve-
                                        hicles like the M113 family of vehicles. Finally, as an entirely new in-
                                        ventory item, the LAV-III is expensive at $2 million each and will re-
                                        quire extended time for high-rate production, mechanics’ training and
                                        spare parts.
                                           An alternative to the strategy constrained by the LAV-III, the
                                        air-mech-strike (AMS) concept achieves the strategic deployment, op-
                                        erational maneuver and tactical mobility necessary for a cost-effective,

   12                                                                           July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
                                                            I Corps soldiers training
US Army

                                                            with LAV-IIIs at Fort Lewis,

          progressive, joint-friendly, relevant Army Transformation. Other armies          The LAV-III weighs
          around the world have already developed this concept with far less fund-         about 38,000 pounds, combat
          ing than the US Army’s.                                                          equipped, which is at the extreme
             AMS is the projection of protected mechanized forces by air-land,             payload envelope of the C-130,
          airdrop and helicopter insertion from both internal and external loads.          limiting landings to long, improved
          This full-dimensional maneuver concept emphasizes air transportabil-             runways. No US helicopter can
          ity to break friction with terrain and obstacles and insert maneuver forces      sling load it. As with most wheeled
          quickly for positional advantage. Recent improvements in the lift ca-            armored vehicles, the LAV-III is
          pacity of helicopters and the performance of lightweight, armored ve-            very tall, barely clearing the roof
          hicles have made vertical insertion of mechanized forces possible. Rus-          of a C-130, which rules out airdrop.
          sian, British and German armies already have operational airmechanized           The LAV-III armored gun version
          forces. The French, Swiss, Swedish and Finnish armies have all recently          is entirely too tall for the C-130.
          purchased large numbers of airmechanized vehicles. The People’s Re-              When the LAV-III add-on armor
          public of China has likewise purchased 200 airmech vehicles from Rus-            is mounted, the LAV-III weighs
          sia. In contrast, the US Army has the world’s largest helicopter fleet but
                                                                                           43,000 pounds, which precludes
                                                                                           C-130 transport altogether.
          no airmech capability.
             Russia’s army has had an operational airmechanized force for more
          than 40 years. In fact, the term “airmechanization” comes from a Rus-
          sian translation of early work Soviet Field Marshal Tuchechevsky did
          on this concept in the 1930s. At the height of the Soviet army’s strength,
          there were eight airmechanized divisions equipped with motorcycles,
          light weapons carriers and the BMD-series armored fighting vehicles.
          These airborne divisions could parachute mechanized infantry units be-
          hind enemy lines or air assault these mechanized forces via Mi-6 and
          Mi-26 helicopters. Today the reduced Russian army has about three such
          divisions equipped with more than 2,000 BMD-2 airmech combat ve-
          hicles and several hundred new BMD-3s equipped with a tank-like 100-
          millimeter (mm) cannon. These vehicles are airdrop-capable and
          helo-transportable, even by US Army CH-47 helicopters.
             The British army built a rapidly deployable light armored force
          in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Its criteria called for a brigade-sized
          element whose vehicles could be transported by C-130 transports,

          MILITARY REVIEW   l   July-August 2001                                                                       13
    A Wiesel-2 sling-
    loaded from a UH-60
    Black Hawk.

                                                           newly purchased from the United States. The Brit-
                                                           ish army selected an 8-ton series of armored ve-
                                                           hicles that eventually led to the Spartan troop car-
                                                           rier and the Scimitar fighting vehicle equipped
                                                           with a shoot-on-the-move, high-velocity, 30mm
                                                           automatic cannon. The 8-ton design allowed a
                                                           C-130 to transport two vehicles and a CH-47 he-
                                                           licopter to sling one, making Great Britain the first
                                                           NATO country with airmechanized capability. A
                                                           British airmobile brigade conducted an AMS 25
                                                           years later over Serbian minefields in Kosovo fol-
                                                           lowing the July 1999 air campaign—establishing
                                                           its sector in only 24 hours. With no such capabil-
                                                           ity, the US Army took several days to occupy its
                                                           sector fully.
                                                               In the 1980s the German army, influenced by
                                                           the earlier Russian and British efforts, decided to
                                                           reorganize its foot-mobile airborne (parachute)
                                                           regiment into an airmechanized force. In 1992 the
                                                           Germans fielded more than 300 Wiesel armored
                                                           tracked vehicles, which are light enough to sling
                                                           under a UH-60 Black Hawk. Optimized as a
                                                           counter-Soviet antiarmored force, these vehicles
                                                           were equipped with 20mm auto cannons and
                                                           heavy tube-launched, optically tracked, wire-
                                                           guided missiles with all-around armor protection
                                                           from 7.62mm small arms. To improve the bri-
                                                           gade’s infantry carrying capability in the post-Cold
                                                           War, the German army is purchasing the Swedish
                                                           airmech vehicle, the 6-ton BV-206S. This ar-
                                                           mored, articulated vehicle carries a full 11-troop
                                                           squad; is still light enough for the CH-47 Chinook
                                                           to carry; and detaches into two separate cabs that
                                                           Black Hawks can carry. The British royal marines
                                                         US Army

                                                           and the French, Swiss, Swedish, Spanish and Finn-
                                                           ish armies are purchasing the BV-206S to gain an
             In 1992 the Germans      airmechanized capability. The US Army operates an unarmored earlier
      fielded more than 300 Wiesel    version called the small-unit support vehicle in Alaska. The small sizes
   armored tracked vehicles, which    of the Wiesel and BV-206S allow the entire German airmechanized bri-
 are light enough to sling under a    gade to deploy using only 20 Boeing 747 jets, or it can be inserted via
    UH-60 Black Hawk. Optimized       parachute from 100 to 150 C-130 sorties.
   as a counter-Soviet antiarmored
force, these vehicles were equipped   TheAMSConceptfortheUSArmy
     with 20mm auto cannons and          An improved European-based airmechanized model can work in the
   heavy tube-launched, optically     US Army. This proposal uses a combination of existing combat vehicles,
 tracked, wire-guided missiles with   along with a modest purchase of European airmech vehicles already in
     all-around armor protection      production, lift helicopters, USAF aircraft and civilian Boeing 747s. The
          from 7.62mm small arms.     airmechanized concept optimizes combat vehicles for aircraft transport-
                                      ability. When secure airports are available, Boeing 747s can move an
                                      airmechanized brigade’s entire combat power, releasing available C-17s
                                      and C-5s for transporting outsized force packages such as helicopters,
                                      tanks, artillery and multiple-launch rocket systems.

   14                                                                       July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW

   The following option focuses on the four active light divisions. Three
classes of vehicles are introduced: airmechanized vehicle—medium
(AMV-M) weighing 8 to 10 tons, airmechanized vehicle—light (AMV-
L) weighing 3 to 7 tons and military all-terrain vehicles (MATVs) weigh-
ing 500 to 4,000 pounds. For simpler comparisons the four light divi-
sions are centered on the three types of airmech vehicles. Actual orga-
nizations should consist of combinations in various percentages.
   AMV-M design. The US Army’s 10th and 25th light divisions are
reorganized using a modified lightweight M113 armored personnel car-                                       The 101st Air Assault
rier employing band tracks and Kevlar hatches (M113LW) as the prime                                        Division is reorganized
candidate for the AMV-M. Each division has three brigades of 300                                           around the purchase of 900
M113LWs each. The M113LW weighs about 19,000 pounds (the                                                   European 3- to 7-ton AMV-Ls,
M113A3 weighs 23,000) and can be sling-loaded by a CH-47 helicop-                                          300 per brigade combat team.
ter. Two M113LWs can be transported by C-130 as opposed to one                                             The two leading candidates are
LAV-III. Add-on armor carried in follow-on aircraft can increase pro-                                      the German Wiesel-2 and the
tection up to the LAV-III’s 14.5mm proof standard. The M113LW has                                          Swedish BV-206S tracked
about the same internal space as a LAV-III and, being tracked, superior                                    armored vehicles. A squad
cross-country and urban mobility. Both vehicles can mount the same                                         would require two Wiesels,
weapon systems, including the 105mm cannon armored turret.                                                 carrying six troops each, but
   The band tracks for the M113LW increase the road speed over the                                         could be sling-loaded by one
stock M113 and make the ride smoother and quieter although the                                             UH-60 helicopter. The BV-206S
LAV-III has a slight advantage in both areas. The low-pressure foot-                                       is larger with room for full
print of the M113LW reduces mine vulnerability. The M113LW uses                                            squads of 11 troops but requires
                                                                                                           three UH-60s to sling load
  A Wiesel-2 mounting
                                                                                                           two complete vehicles with
  a 120mm mortar.                                                                                          cabs separated.
                                                                            MaK, System Gesellschaft mbH

MILITARY REVIEW   l   July-August 2001                                                                                                15
              Russian, British and      existing M113A3s with only minor modifications, resulting in the low
  German armies already have            acquisition cost of $250,000 each; a fast fielding time line; and excel-
     operational airmechanized          lent sustainability by leveraging the parts and maintenance know-how
forces. . . . The People’s Repub-       of the existing M113A3 fleet. Finally, the M113LW’s low weight and
  lic of China has likewise pur-        compact size facilitate transport by commercial aircraft, which can de-
   chased 200 airmech vehicles          liver an entire M113LW brigade by 60 Boeing 747 sorties.
from Russia. In contrast, the              AMV-L design. The 101st Air Assault Division is reorganized around
     US Army has the world’s            the purchase of 900 European 3- to 7-ton AMV-Ls, 300 per brigade com-
    largest helicopter fleet but        bat team. The two leading candidates are the German Wiesel-2 and the
           no airmech capability.       Swedish BV-206S tracked armored vehicles. A squad would require two
                                        Wiesels, carrying six troops each, but could be sling-loaded by one
                                        UH-60 helicopter. The BV-206S is larger with room for full squads of

David Isenberg
   H.L. Mencken, the famed sage of Baltimore, wrote            their armaments as well as their manpower requirements.
that for every problem there is a nice, neat solution,         The United States went from a million-man force dur-
which is inevitably wrong. The same might be said for          ing the Civil War, to an expeditionary force 2.8 million
critics who claim that the US Army’s new heavy                 strong during World War I, to a gargantuan force of 12
weapon systems, such as the Crusader self-propelled            million during World War II. History hardly disproves
howitzer or the M1A2 system enhancement package                the claim that we have recently crossed some watershed
(SEP), are not suitable for the Army’s 21st-century            and reached the end of an era. Such sea change is clearly
transformation strategy, which seeks to make major             possible. However, it takes more than Pentagon officials’
Army weapons lighter and air deployable.1 Such single-         unsupported assertions to prove the case.
minded critics fear that these high-tech weapon systems           In fact, criticism of the Army’s deployment capabili-
cannot be transported aboard a C-130. However, they            ties has entered the realm of the absurd. Because the
fail to see the bigger problem—the breathtaking and al-        Army has experienced problems deploying heavy
most hidden presumption that all future conflicts will be      ground combat power, such as the 1999 war over Ko-
relatively minor intrastate affairs.                           sovo, critics have illogically challenged the future rel-
   Smaller-scale contingencies will require US ground          evance of major ground combat forces. More important,
forces to be deployed overseas at unprecedented speeds:        the Army itself has not ruled out the possibility of ma-
a combat brigade of up to 3,500 troops in four days and        jor combat operations. A case in point is the Army’s
a division of 12,000 in five. The risk is simple: will fu-     positioning of bulky equipment. Today the Army has
ture US Army forces, lacking heavy direct- and indirect-       seven heavy-brigade sets of equipment pre-positioned:
fire weapons, be ready to take on a well-armed aggres-         one in Italy, Kuwait, Qatar and South Korea; two in
sor? Historically, deficiencies in heavy fire support do       Central Europe; and one afloat.4
not become obvious until large ground forces are deeply           Agreeing with the Army, the congressionally man-
embroiled in combat.2                                          dated US Commission on National Security/21st Cen-
   Without heavy forces, how does an army move for-            tury noted in 2000 that future US military capabilities
ward 20 to 50 kilometers (km) a day and live to tell the       should still include “conventional capabilities necessary
tale? Transformation advocates explain that future forces      to win major wars.”5 The very fact that the United States
will not move 20 km a day but 150, finding safety in-          is now the world’s dominant economic and military
side the enemy’s observe, orient, decide, act loop. What       power makes it certain that rivals seeking regional he-
happens if the enemy is not there at the end of a 150-         gemony will modernize conventional forces to take ad-
km hop? What if he has the initiative elsewhere and you        vantage of US force structure vulnerabilities.6 This is
lose visualization of the battle? At that point, will it not   especially so because the US military shapes the inter-
be just enemy tanks against your wheels? Can we af-            national order.
ford to commit to combat if we cannot hold our own?               Critics confuse the probability and number of future
   The United States does not face a high probability of       interstate wars with the likelihood of firepower-intense
major interstate war. However, the probability is not          conflicts. It is not difficult to foresee future operations,
zero. It was only in 1994 that Saddam Hussein once             short of a major interstate war, in which the firepower
again threatened to invade Kuwait, and a few months            provided by Crusader and the M1A2 SEP would be nec-
later, Pyongyang threatened to invade South Korea.3            essary to counter our adversaries. States can easily ob-
Moreover, the presumption that the future will involve         tain sophisticated weaponry. A recent study authorized
only low- and medium-intensity conflicts runs counter          by the National Intelligence Council noted that technol-
to a 250-year trend in warfare. Since the mid-18th cen-        ogy diffusion “will accelerate as weapons and militarily
tury, armies have inexorably increased the weight of           relevant technologies are moved rapidly and routinely

16                                                                                 July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW

11 troops but requires three UH-60s to sling load two complete vehicles                       [For the proposed Active
with cabs separated. Both vehicles offer all-around 7.62mm ball pro-                          light divisions] three classes
tection with add-on armor to stop 7.62 armor-piercing rounds. Light foot-                     of vehicles are introduced:
prints make these two vehicles unlikely to set off pressure-detonated                         airmechanized vehicle—medium
antitank mines; however, in a blast sequence, the vehicles are less sur-                      (AMV-M) weighing 8 to10
vivable than the M113 or LAV-III. Low-recoil auto cannons up to 30mm                          tons, airmechanized vehicle—
can be carried along with every known antitank guided missile and the                         light (AMV-L) weighing 3 to
heavy 120mm mortar.                                                                           7 tons and military all-terrain
   While the Wiesel and LAV-III have comparable road speeds, the                              vehicles (MATVs) weighing
BV-206S is slower. The BV-206S has superior terrain agility; its articu-                      500 to 4,000 pounds.
lated track system allows it to negotiate large obstacles, swampland,
wooded terrain and steep slopes. The two separate cabs of the BV-206S also

across national borders in response to increasingly com-       main island because it is unlikely China can quickly
mercial rather than security calculations.”7 Deploying a       achieve air superiority. While the long-term threat to
force that is operationally capable and genuinely re-          Taiwan remains serious, it is doubtful the People’s Lib-
spected by its enemies ensures force protection. Getting       eration Army (PLA) could achieve the maneuver, sur-
a lightly armed force to the conflict zone—even if it ar-      prise and strength necessary to land troops where they
rives first—will not.                                          would not be locally outnumbered and outgunned by
   No one can be confident that the revolutions in war-        defenders. It is unlikely that mainland China will acquire
fare and the concomitant rush to transform US military         the logistic muscle to strengthen its invading forces
forces allow greater reliance on air and naval standoff        faster than Taiwan can reinforce its defending forces.
capabilities and less on ground forces. Using air power        The protracted PLA campaign necessary to put Taiwan
for nearly a decade after defeating Iraq during Opera-         in real jeopardy would allow more than enough time for
tion Desert Storm has not removed Hussein’s threat.            the United States to deploy or pre-position even its
And, using air power in Operation Allied Force to force        heaviest forces.
Serbia to withdraw from Kosovo was plagued with                   Major conflicts remain not only possible but prob-
enough problems to cause the Clinton administration to         able. However, unlike Federal Express packages, US
contemplate using ground forces almost to the very end.        ground forces do not really have to get there overnight.
   Our new tanks and cannon field artillery will provide       To make US forces formidable when they do arrive,
increased and more accurate firepower from longer dis-         heavy weapon systems, such as Crusader, are still good
tances and the ability to share battlefield intelligence       investments both for the 21st-century Army and national
with ships and aircraft. Moreover, using tube artillery in-    security in an uncertain world.
stead of missiles does not exclude precision fires. The
latest howitzers are two-fers. In addition to firing inex-                                         NOTES
pensive iron rounds, advanced cannons could deliver                1. Richard Sinnreich, “For the Field Artillery, History Risks Repeating Itself,”
precision submunitions inside 30-foot circles. Consid-         The Lawton Constitution, 10 December 2000, <
ering that the standard 155-millimeter projectile’s nor-       20history%20risks%20repeating%20itself.htm>; Dave Moniz, “Overhaul of
                                                               Army Puts a Premium on Speed: ‘Transformation’ Goal: Get Troops Ready for
mal bursting radius is around 100 feet, the cannon crit-       Modern Warfare,” USA Today, 16 January 2001, 1.
ics’ single-minded preference for missiles seems all the           2. Sinnreich.
                                                                   3. Donald Kagan and Frederick W. Kagan, While America Sleeps: Self-Delusion,
more misplaced.                                                Military Weakness and Threat to Peace Today (New York: St. Martin’s Press),
   Finally, there is a remarkable lack of hard data back-          4. Stephen Kosiak, Andrew Krepenevich and Michael Vickers, Strategy for a
ing up the presumption that US forces must be able to          Long Peace (Washington, DC: Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments),
deploy immediately to fight successfully and defeat an             5. Seeking National Strategy: A Concert for Preserving Security and Promot-
                                                               ing Freedom: The Phase II Report on a US National Security Strategy for the 21st
opponent. Consider the cases in Iraq and Taiwan. Al-           Century (Washington, DC: US Commission on National Security/21st Century, 15
though air power has not unseated Hussein, it has quite        April 2000), 14.
                                                                   6. Robert Kagan and William Kristol, eds., Present Dangers: Crisis and Op-
capably contained him. US Central Command’s ability            portunity in American Foreign and Defense Policy (San Francisco, CA: Encoun-
                                                               ter Books, 2000), 262-63.
to slow down an Iraqi attack has improved since Desert             7. Global Trends 2015: A Dialogue About the Future With Nongovernment
Storm, through regular exercises, pre-positioned mate-         Experts, (Washington, DC: National Intelligence Council, 2000-02, December
                                                               2000), <>.
riel and the much lower readiness level of Iraqi military
forces. US ground forces have more time to deploy to                 David Isenberg is an analyst in the Arms Control and
the theater to defeat Iraq decisively, should it attack any-      Threat Reduction Division, DynMeridian, Alexandria, Virginia.
one in the Middle East again.                                     He is an adjunct scholar at the CATO Institute in Washing-
                                                                  ton, DC, and an associate fellow at the Matthew B. Ridgway
   In Taiwan, it is improbable that China could success-          Center for International Security Studies, University of Pittsburgh.
fully mount a surprise amphibious assault against the

MILITARY REVIEW     l   July-August 2001                                                                                                      17
                                      allow excellent modularity for mission flexibility and increased survivabil-
                                      ity through compartmented blast areas. The 101st Air Assault Division
                                      has sufficient UH-60 and CH-47 helicopters to insert an entire brigade’s
                                      maneuver strength in one lift out to a radius of about 200 kilometers (km).
        The 82d Airborne Division     Both vehicles cost about $500,000 and are small enough for about 20
  is reorganized with 300 wheeled     Boeing 747 sorties to transport the entire brigade’s combat power.
MATVs per brigade and 900 per            MATV design. The 82d Airborne Division is reorganized with 300
 division. The MATVs would be         wheeled MATVs per brigade and 900 per division. The MATVs would
    4x4 or 6x6 wheeled vehicles,      be 4x4 or 6x6 wheeled vehicles, some with limited 5.56mm armor plate.
some with limited 5.56mm armor        The candidates are the British Supacat and the US-made Flyer 21 and
    plate. The candidates are the     Polaris RANGER. These vehicles would be easy to deploy with stack-
British Supacat and the US-made       ing capability; one Boeing 747 could transport about 50. The MATV’s
Flyer 21 and Polaris RANGER.          light weight and small size would also facilitate airdropping large num-
These vehicles would be easy to       bers by relatively few T-tail USAF cargo aircraft. The light weight and
   deploy with stacking capability;   compact size would facilitate long-range air assaults, employing UH-60
            one Boeing 747 could      and CH-47 helicopters with auxiliary fuel tanks making insertions out
               transport about 50.    to 400 km. The MATV can carry various weapons up to 40mm auto-
                                      matic grenade launchers, heavy antitank missiles and medium mortars.
                                      These vehicles cost about $100,000 and are very easy to maintain. While
                                      the MATV would not present a well-protected vehicle like the M113
                                      or BV-206S, the ability to deploy so many in so few aircraft sorties
                                      would allow the 82d Airborne Division to be inserted rapidly with ex-
                                      cellent ground mobility and more firepower than current foot-mobile
                                      brigades with hand-held weapons. The low cost per vehicle makes the
                                      option all the more attainable.
                                         Air defense artillery affects helicopter flight as antitank defenses do
                                      armored maneuver. Both defenses must be suppressed and accounted
                                      for in risk-factor planning, but history has shown that the static nature
                                      of such defenses normally does not preclude armored or helicopter ma-
                                      neuver. Because AMS forces are mechanized, landing and drop zones
                                      can be displaced tens of km away from enemy concentrations and
                                      high-density air defenses. If enemy air defenses are too strong to per-
                                      mit helicopter operations, then the AMS brigade can maneuver at mecha-
                                      nized speeds. Sling-loading vehicles, which increases risk, can be re-
                                      placed by streamlined external-load (SEL) technology already available
                                      in the civil helicopter market. Using SEL to carry large external loads
                                      close to the underbelly of helicopters greatly improves maneuverabil-
                                      ity, nearly doubles assault radius and reduces above-ground signatures.
                                         Adopting the proposed airmech option provides a foundation for de-
                                      veloping more advanced three-dimensional capabilities in the Objective
                                      Force. In addition to meeting Shinseki’s strategic deployment standards,
                                      the concept allows the force to airdrop an entire mechanized brigade in
                                      one lift and the option to insert light armor via helicopters out to a com-
                                      bat radius of 200 km—all using 1980s airmech vehicles and 1970s he-
                                      licopter technology. Recent technological advances in information war-
                                      fare, combat vehicles, weaponry, signature management and rotary- and
                                      fixed-wing aircraft point to revolutionary expansion of three-dimensional
                                      maneuver warfare. Committing now to the first stage of airmechanized
                                      capability assures institutional conversion throughout the Army that will

  18                                                                         July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
                                                                                                                   Sikorski Aircraft Corp.

                                                           (Right) A Black
                                                           Hawk tailored for
                                                           fire-fighting by
                                                           adding a special-
                                                           ized SEL. (Below)
                                                           An S-64 Sky Crane
                                                           with a typical SEL
                                                           payload, 1965.

                                                                                                               US Army
drive leader training and doctrine development to keep pace with future         Sling-loading vehicles,
technological maneuver advances.                                                which increases risk, can be
   The need for increased range. Army legacy aircraft have a relatively         replaced by streamlined
short range and require large cargo aircraft for timely deployment to a         external-load (SEL) technology
crisis theater. This limitation also increases risk in the short 200-km tac-    already available in the civil
tical sling-load radius of airmech vehicles. AMS proposes to remedy             helicopter market. Using SEL
this shortfall by joining the Navy’s vectored thrust ducted propeller           to carry large external loads
(VTDP) modification to the Sikorsky H-60 helicopter series. This tech-          close to the underbelly of heli-
nology replaces the tail rotor of the AH-64 and UH-60 with a ducted             copters greatly improves
fan and short wings to nearly double the cruise speed from 120 to 220           maneuverability, nearly
knots. This increased speed changes a worldwide, self-deployed, seven-          doubles assault radius and
to 10-day challenge to a four-day operation.                                    reduces above-ground
   Adopting commercially available SEL configurations for the CH-47             signatures.
and UH-60 would likewise extend the range even further, reducing the
risk from enemy air defenses through closer terrain flight. The result of
an aggressive 5-year VTDP and SEL program could achieve 4-day
self-deployment for Army aviation and double the combat insertion ra-
dius from 200 to 400 km. The range increase greatly enhances surprise,
flexibility and survivability while multiplying the area of influence of a
deployed Army force. These programs would extend the viability of
legacy aircraft until about 2015 to 2020 when a future transport rotor-
craft (FTR) could be fielded as a CH-47 and UH-60 replacement. FTR
would employ revolutionary rotor technologies such as retractable and
tilt rotors to achieve 500-knot cruise speeds, same-day self-deployment
and a 1,500-km insertion radius for a 20-ton armored vehicle.
   Future combat system (FCS). Scheduled to arrive with the FTR in
2015, the FCS is the Army’s replacement for the M1 Abrams tank and
the M2 Bradley IFV. The FCS’s common chassis will yield a carrier
version weighing 10 tons and an attack version weighing 20 tons. The

MILITARY REVIEW   l   July-August 2001                                                                      19
      The Piasecki PiAC 16H Pathfinder with wings and vectored
      thrust ducted propeller, circa 1962. (Inset left) The heavily
      armored AH-56 Cheyenne flew in excess of 400 km per
      hour in “clean” configuration. Production stopped
      at 10 aircraft in 1972 because of budgetary
      problems. (Inset right) Artist’s conception
      of the Paisecki components on
      a Black Hawk.

                                                                                                                                  Kulair Inc.
US Army

                                                                                                                        US Army
               Army legacy aircraft              FTR will transport either two carriers or one attack FCS to mass for an
       have a relatively short range             operation. Instead of fielding heavy armor, advanced weapons will in-
  and require large cargo aircraft               clude hypervelocity rocket penetrators and advanced chemical energy
  for timely deployment to a crisis              warheads. FCS will use advanced signature-management technologies
      theater. . . . AMS proposes to             to hide from sensors and avoid being hit as the principal means of bal-
   remedy this shortfall by joining              listic survivability. Different mission models of FCS will have the same
the Navy’s vectored thrust ducted                external appearance to complicate enemy imagery calculations. Even fire
   propeller (VTDP) modification                 support platforms, such as trailer-mounted artillery rockets, will appear
   to the Sikorsky H-60 helicopter               to be logistic carriers.
 series. This technology replaces                   Unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) and unmanned ground vehicle
    the tail rotor of the AH-64 and              (UGV) use. The lighter FCS and FTR force of the future will employ
     UH-60 with a ducted fan and                 large numbers of UAVs and UGVs. Leaders down to platoon level will
 short wings to nearly double the                be able to launch these relatively inexpensive aerial and ground probes
         cruise speed from 120 to                to greatly expand situational awareness and reduce risk to manned recon-
                          220 knots.             naissance. Using ground robotics will also allow commanders to move
                                                 weapons, ammunition and logistic materiel while reducing the drain on
                                                 manpower and the risk on soldiers from ambush, land mines and con-
                                                 taminated areas. Organic flying and driving sensors will be tied into
                                                 larger, more sophisticated platforms with data downlinks, further enhanc-
                                                 ing commanders’ battlefield awareness. By widely using UAVs and
                                                 UGVs, a two-dimensional enemy force will be especially vulnerable to
                                                 standoff joint and Army precision munitions, facilitating a better over-
                                                 match when the inevitable closure with the enemy and objectives occurs.
                                                    Strategic joint projection improvements. More sophisticated cargo
                                                 aircraft, such as the C-17, will be needed to project Army combat power.
                                                 The aging C-130 fleet will need to be replaced with new platforms that
                                                 deliver Army forces to unimproved fields employing super-short takeoff

          20                                                                           July-August 2000   l   MILITARY REVIEW

and landing craft. A leading candidate is Lockheed’s tilt-wing concept
that promises to deliver up to three 20-ton FCSs. Another projecting and
sustaining technology for Army land forces is the wing-in-ground (WIG)
effect. Large Russian-built prototypes have demonstrated that surface-
skimming aircraft can carry four times the load of a current C-5 by us-
ing the extra lift associated with ground effect. WIG is a possible re-
placement for the aging C-5 fleet. The aircraft would be used only over            The result of an
water but could substantially improve early-entry forces’ projection and           aggressive 5-year VTDP and
sustainment. Joint mobile offshore bases can also be substantially im-
                                                                                   SEL program could achieve
                                                                                   4-day self-deployment for Army
proved by linking 10 to 12 supertankers together, under a flat deck, pro-
                                                                                   aviation and double the combat
jecting Army forces via USAF tilt-wing and FTR systems. Not intended               insertion radius from 200 to
for amphibious Marine-style assaults, these floating bases would be semi-          400 km. The range increase
permanent as a partial solution to the lack of forward bases.                      greatly enhances surprise, flex-
   US Army relevance in the 21st century depends on the ability to de-             ibility and survivability while
ploy sizable forces rapidly from the Continental United States. Once               multiplying the area of influence
deployed, they must quickly gain decisive, positional advantage over               of a deployed Army force. These
any adversary throughout the spectrum of conflict. The formula for such            programs would extend the
a force lies in the concept of airmechanization, which takes advantage             viability of legacy aircraft until
of information superiority and provides strategic deployability, forced-           about 2015 to 2020 when a
entry capability, dominant maneuver, tactical agility, survivability, op-          future transport rotorcraft
erations in depth and flexibility for the commander. Two-dimensional               could be fielded as a CH-47
warfare will no longer give our forces the overmatch to win. Many of               and UH-60 replacement.
our European allies are already well down the airmech road. The US
military already has airmechanization’s most expensive element—
the most robust helicopter and fixed-wing force in the world. Transfor-
mation should capitalize on that capability and enable the Army’s
full-dimensional maneuver—the money saved can be reallocated to
other NMS priorities.

       Brigadier General David L. Grange, US Army, Retired, is executive vice
   president and chief operating officer of the McCormick Tribune Foundation.
   He received a B.S. from North Georgia College and an M.A. from Western
   Kentucky University. He is a graduate of the US Marine Corps Command
   and General Staff College, the National War College and the British Spe-
   cial Air Service College. He held various infantry and special forces com-
   mand and staff positions in the Continental United States, Europe, Korea and
   Vietnam, including commanding general, 1st Infantry Division. He has also
   commanded the 75th Ranger Regiment; 1st Battalion, 503d Infantry; and a
   task force during Operation Desert Storm. His article, “Task Force Eagle
   and the Battle of the Buses” appeared in the March-April 2000 issue of
   Military Review.
       Lieutenant Colonel Richard D. Liebert, US Army Reserve, operates his
   family’s farm in Great Falls, Montana, and is a staff leader and instructor,
   11th Battalion, 6th Brigade, 104th Division, Vancouver Barracks, Washing-
   ton. He received a B.S. from Purdue University and is a graduate of the US
   Army Command and General Staff College. He has served in various com-
   mand and staff positions in the Continental United States and Europe, in-
   cluding company XO, 1st Infantry Division, Goeppingen, Germany; assis-
   tant S3, 2d Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division, Fort Hood, Texas; and XO, 163d
   Infantry Regiment, Montana Army National Guard, Bozeman, Montana.
       Major Chuck Jarnot, US Army, is the operations officer, Active and Re-
   serve Component Training Support Battalion, Fort Riley, Kansas. He received
   a B.S. from Western Michigan University and an M.S. from Embry Riddle
   Aeronautical University. He is a graduate of the US Army Command and
   General Staff College. He has served in various command and staff positions
   in the Continental United States, including air cavalry troop commander, Fort
   Campbell, Kentucky; heavy lift company commander, Fort Riley; and stra-
   tegic planner, Pacific Theater.

MILITARY REVIEW    l   July-August 2001                                                                         21
      TRATEGIC ASYMMETRY uses some sort
S     of difference to gain an advantage over an ad-
versary. Many of history’s greatest generals had an
                                                                  There is more to precision than
                                                              simply hitting the right target. Military
instinct for it. Like the US military in the Gulf War,   strategists and commanders must think in terms
Mongols under Genghis Khan and his successors            of psychological precision as well—structuring
often used superior mobility, operational speed, in-       a military operation to shape the attitudes,
telligence, synchronization, training and morale to         beliefs and perceptions among the enemy
crush enemies in lightning campaigns. When nec-              and other observers, whether local non-
essary, the Mongols used superior Chinese engineer-               combatants or global audiences.
ing for successful sieges. Other conquerors, such as
the Romans, Europeans, Aztecs and Zulus, brought
superior technology, discipline, training and leader-    somewhat more broadly, listing terrorism, using or
ship to the battlefield. Rebels in anticolonial wars     threatening to use weapons of mass destruction and
also relied on asymmetry by weaving guerrilla op-        information warfare as asymmetric challenges. In
erations, protracted warfare, political warfare and a    1997 asymmetric threats began to receive greater
willingness to sacrifice into Maoist People’s War,       attention. The Report of the Quadrennial Defense
the Intifada and the troubles of Northern Ireland.       Review stated, “US dominance in the conventional
   Throughout the Cold War, asymmetry was im-            military arena may encourage adversaries to . . . use
portant to US strategic thinking but was not labeled     asymmetric means to attack our forces and interests
as such. Matching Soviet quantitative advantages in      overseas and Americans at home.”4
Europe with US and NATO qualitative superiority             The National Defense Panel (NDP), a senior-level
was integral to US strategy. Other concepts such as      group Congress commissioned to assess long-term
Massive Retaliation in the 1950s or the maritime         US defense issues, was even more explicit. The
strategy in the 1980s elevated asymmetry to an even      panel reported: “We can assume that our enemies
higher plane.1 Beginning in the 1990s, the Depart-       and future adversaries have learned from the Gulf
ment of Defense (DOD) began to recognize the po-         War. They are unlikely to confront us convention-
tential for asymmetric threats to the United States.     ally with mass armor formations, air superiority
This was part of DOD’s increased understanding of        forces, and deep-water naval fleets of their own, all
the post-Cold War security environment. Since the        areas of overwhelming US strength today. Instead,
global power distribution was asymmetric, it fol-        they may find new ways to attack our interests, our
lowed that asymmetric strategies would naturally         forces and our citizens. They will look for ways to
evolve.                                                  match their strengths against our weaknesses.” 5 The
   Explicit mention of asymmetry first appeared in       NDP specifically mentioned danger of massive US
the 1995 Joint Publication 1, Joint Warfare of the       casualties caused by enemy weapons of mass de-
Armed Forces of the United States, but the concept       struction to delay or complicate US access to a re-
was used in a very simplistic, limited sense.2 The       gion and inflict casualties, attacks on US electronic
doctrine defined asymmetric engagements as those         and computer-based information systems, use of
between dissimilar forces, specifically air versus       mines and missiles along straits and littorals, and
land, air versus sea and so forth.3 This narrow con-     terrorism.
cept of asymmetry had limited utility. The 1995             The intelligence community and the Joint Staff re-
National Military Strategy approached the issue          acted to the panel’s report, and a flurry of activity

MILITARY REVIEW   l   July-August 2001                                                                     23
                                                                                                                            US Army Center of Military History
     North Vietnamese artillery in action, April 1972. Heralded by
     massive artillery attacks, North Vietnamese forces advanced
     straight across the demilitarized zone, the Central Highlands
     and toward An Loc in the Saigon corridor. A later conventional
     offensive overran South Vietnam in 1975.

       In most anticolonial wars or insurgencies, the less-advanced forces preferred to emulate
 the advanced ones. . . . Mao held that guerrilla warfare was seldom decisive but should be used as a
preface for large-scale mobile war. After all, it was not the Viet Cong who overthrew the government
  of South Vietnam but a conventional combined arms force from North Vietnam. Understanding
  whether the asymmetry is deliberate or by default is important since an enemy using deliberate
      asymmetry is likely to make more adjustments and require a more flexible counterstrategy.

ensued to flesh out the meaning and implications of               DefinitionandConceptualFoundation
strategic asymmetry.6 The most important single                      Clear thinking begins with simple, comprehen-
study was the 1999 Joint Strategy Review, Asym-                   sive, shared definitions. The 1999 Joint Strategy
metric Approaches to Warfare, which provided a                    Review provided the broadest official treatment of
conceptual framework and a number of recommen-                    asymmetry: “Asymmetric approaches are attempts
dations. Joint Vision 2010, a 1995 document pre-                  to circumvent or undermine US strengths while ex-
pared by the chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff, to pro-             ploiting US weaknesses using methods that differ
vide a conceptual template for future US Armed                    significantly from the United States’ expected method
Forces, did not mention asymmetry, but Joint Vi-                  of operations. . . . [Asymmetric approaches] gen-
sion 2020, the follow-on document released in 2000,               erally seek a major psychological impact, such as
labeled asymmetric approaches as “perhaps the most                shock or confusion, that affects an opponent’s ini-
serious danger the United States faces in the imme-               tiative, freedom of action or will. Asymmetric meth-
diate future.”7 Finally, the Secretary of Defense’s               ods require an appreciation of an opponent’s vul-
Annual Report to Congress in 1998 and 1999 noted                  nerabilities. Asymmetric approaches often employ
that US conventional military dominance encour-                   innovative, nontraditional tactics, weapons or tech-
ages adversaries to seek asymmetric means of at-                  nologies and can be applied at all levels of war-
tacking US military forces, US interests and US citi-             fare —strategic, operational and tactical— and
zens. The 2000 annual report, while retaining the                 across the spectrum of military operations.”8 This
description of asymmetric threats used in previous                latest official definition of asymmetry expanded of-
reports, dropped the word “asymmetric.”                           ficial thinking but has two shortcomings: it is spe-
   This treatment of asymmetry in official strategy               cific to the current strategic environment and US se-
documents indicates that the concept may grow even                curity situation, and it deals primarily with what an
more significant. Yet, strategy and doctrine to deal              opponent might do to the United States rather than
with asymmetric threats and highlight US asym-                    giving equal weight to how the US military might
metric capabilities require greater conceptual rigor.             use asymmetry against its opponents.

24                                                                                 July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
                                                                                   ASYMMETRIC WARFARE

   A more general, complete definition of strategic       taineers were victorious because they fought in a way
asymmetry would be: In military affairs and national      they understood, not because they analyzed the weak-
security, asymmetry is acting, organizing and think-      ness of the more conventional loyalist forces and
ing differently from opponents to maximize relative       designed ways to take advantage of them. In most
strengths, exploit opponents’ weaknesses or gain          anticolonial wars or insurgencies, the less-advanced
greater freedom of action. It can be political-           forces preferred to emulate the advanced ones.
strategic, military-strategic, operational or a com-         Mao Zedong held that guerrilla warfare was sel-
bination, and entail different methods, technologies,     dom decisive but should be used as a preface for
values, organizations or time perspectives. It can be
short-term, long-term, deliberate or by default. It
also can be discrete or pursued in conjunction with                 This latest official definition of
symmetric approaches and have both psychologi-             asymmetry expanded official thinking but has
cal and physical dimensions. While the key idea is        two shortcomings: it is specific to the current
that significant differences exist, there are several     strategic environment and US security situation,
elements of this definition that warrant elaboration.       and it deals primarily with what an opponent
   Dimensions of asymmetry. Strategic asymme-             might do to the United States rather than giving
try can be positive or negative. Positive asymmetry         equal weight to how the US military might
uses differences to gain an advantage. US military              use asymmetry against its opponents.
strategy places great value on superior training, lead-
ership and technology to sustain and exploit supe-
riority. Negative asymmetry involves an opponent’s        large-scale mobile war.9 After all, it was not the Viet
threat to one’s vulnerabilities. Most DOD thinking        Cong who overthrew the government of South Viet-
about asymmetry focuses on its negative form.             nam but a conventional combined arms force from
   Strategic asymmetry can also be short-term or          North Vietnam. Understanding whether the asym-
long-term. Military history shows that sooner or          metry is deliberate or by default is important since
later the enemy adjusts to many types of short-term       an enemy using deliberate asymmetry is likely to
strategic asymmetry. During World War II, for in-         make more adjustments and require a more flexible
stance, blitzkrieg succeeded for a year or two until      counterstrategy.
the Soviets found ways to counter it. It took longer,        Strategic asymmetry can be low-risk or high-risk.
but Third World governments and their militaries          Some forms of asymmetry such as superior train-
eventually found counters to the Maoist People’s          ing or leadership are time-tested. They may be
War. The 1999 air campaign against Serbia suggests        costly to develop and maintain but seldom increase
that enemies may find ways to counter US advan-           strategic or operational risk. The high cost of hav-
tages in air power by camouflage, dispersion and          ing a fully trained, equipped, ready force reduces
dense, but relatively unsophisticated, air defense        risk even though it may not fully protect against all
systems. Long-term asymmetry is more rare. The            asymmetric actions such as the attack in Aden,
United States will probably sustain its asymmetric        Yemen. In another sense the assault was a low-cost,
advantage over certain types of enemies for a fairly      high-risk action that may have had disproportion-
long time, largely by devoting more resources to          ate consequences—removing US naval presence
maintain military superiority than potential enemies.     from a key port and possibly others. Other forms
However, sustaining an asymmetric advantage re-           of asymmetry are experimental and are risky. Ter-
quires constant effort; any military force that does      rorism, for instance, may be a low-cost, high-risk
not adapt to strategic change will decline in effec-      approach because it can generate a backlash against
tiveness.                                                 users or reinforce rather than erode the target’s re-
   Strategic asymmetry can be deliberate or by de-        solve. Just as most mutations in nature are dysfunc-
fault. US strategists actively think about asymme-        tional or insignificant, many forms of strategic
try and how best to use or control it. More often,        asymmetry are acts of desperation that do not work
antagonists in a conflict simply use what they have       or only work temporarily.
and do what they know. An asymmetric outcome                 Strategic asymmetry can be discrete or integrated
is more accidental than planned. For instance, a          with symmetric techniques. Generally, only the most
combined French and Indian force defeated British         desperate antagonists would rely solely on asymmet-
General Edward Braddock near Fort Duquesne in             ric methods. Those who are capable integrate asym-
1775, and a group of colonial mountaineers defeated       metric and symmetric methods. Joint Vision 2020
loyalists, commanded by Major Patrick Ferguson,           notes that “our adversaries may pursue a combina-
at King’s Mountain in 1780. The Indians and moun-         tion of asymmetries, or the United States may face

MILITARY REVIEW    l   July-August 2001                                                                       25
                                                                                                                   US Army
                                                                        A German victory parade in Warsaw
                                                                        after the Nazis divided Poland between
                                                                        themselves and the Soviets in 1939.
     Asymmetry can be material or psychological. The two concepts are interrelated: a material
asymmetric advantage often generates psychological advantages. But, there have been states and
militaries throughout history that were particularly adept at manipulating psychological asymmetry,
often by propagating an image of fierceness. The Mongols, Assyrians, Aztecs and Zulus are ex-
    amples of great conquerors who effectively combined material and psychological asymmetry.

a number of adversaries who, in combination, cre-        adjunct to conventional operations; Operation Body-
ate an asymmetric threat.”10 Commonly, such inte-        guard, the operational-level deception plan to sup-
grated approaches are more powerful than strategies      port the Normandy invasion; and antiaccess or
that rely solely on either symmetric or asymmetric       counterdeployment techniques using missiles, mines,
methods.                                                 terrorism and other weapons. Military-strategic asym-
   Finally, asymmetry can be material or psychologi-     metry is an integrated military strategy based on
cal. The two concepts are interrelated: a material       asymmetry rather than using it as an adjunct to sym-
asymmetric advantage often generates psychologi-         metric methods. Examples include the Maoist
cal advantages. But there have been states and mili-     People’s War, blitzkrieg and Massive Retaliation,
taries throughout history that were particularly adept   the strategic concept that Warsaw Pact aggression
at manipulating psychological asymmetry, often by        would invite a US nuclear strike on the Soviet
propagating an image of fierceness. The Mongols,         homeland.
Assyrians, Aztecs and Zulus are examples of great           Politico-strategic asymmetry is using nonmilitary
conquerors who effectively combined material and         means to gain a military advantage. For instance,
psychological asymmetry. Their fierce image aug-         recent attempts to ban forms of military technology,
mented advantages in training, leadership and doc-       including information warfare, target the United
trine. Often psychological asymmetry is cheaper          States more than less-developed states. Similarly,
than the material variant but is harder to sustain.      one opponent in a conflict might be able to gain an
   Levels of asymmetry. The most common form             advantage by claiming victim status. While the
of asymmetry resides at the operational level of war.    North Vietnamese were able to gain the moral high
Historical examples include the Germans’ use of          ground against the United States to some extent,
submarine warfare to counterbalance the British          Slobodan Milosevic and Saddam Hussein failed. In
advantage in capital ships; urban operations to coun-    any case, politico-strategic asymmetry is likely to
terbalance a military force with superior mobility;      become increasingly significant as information and
long-range fires in the battles for Stalingrad or Hue;   globalization make states more susceptible to exter-
guerrilla operations in an enemy’s rear area as an       nal political pressure.

26                                                                        July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
                                                                                      ASYMMETRIC WARFARE
   Forms of asymmetry. At least six forms of                pike formations that dominated European battle-
asymmetry are relevant in the realm of national se-         fields during the Renaissance, the levee en masse
curity and warfare. Asymmetric methods involve              which helped French revolutionaries stave off a
using different operational concepts or tactical doc-       number of professional European armies, the sys-
trines than the enemy. Examples include guerrilla           tem of independent but mutually supporting corps
war and other nonlinear concepts. Many of the op-
erational concepts the US Army anticipates using
in the future, such as advanced vertical envelopment              Strategic asymmetry can be positive
with mobile, protected forces (as opposed to air as-        or negative. Positive asymmetry uses differences
saults or airdrops using simple foot-mobile infan-           to gain an advantage. US military strategy
try), would entail operational asymmetry.                   places great value on superior training, leader-
   Asymmetric technologies have been common in                 ship and technology to sustain and exploit
military history, particularly in wars pitting an in-       superiority. Negative asymmetry involves an
dustrially advanced state against a backward one               opponent’s threat to one’s vulnerabilities.
such as Europe’s imperial wars of the 19th and 20th          Most DOD thinking about asymmetry focuses
centuries. While the Europeans brought a wide ar-                         on its negative form.
ray of military advantages to bear in their colonial
wars, Hillaire Belloc captured their enduring trust
in technological asymmetry when he wrote, “What-            Napoleon created and insurgent undergrounds. In
ever happens, we have got the Maxim gun and they            the future, state militaries may face nonstate enemies
have not.” Advanced technology can be decisive in           organized as networks rather than hierarchies.11
conflicts when the less-developed antagonist can-              Finally, asymmetries of patience or time perspec-
not adapt. Britain’s colonial forces first used the         tive can be significant. These are conceptually linked
Maxim gun in the Matabele War in 1893-94. In one            to an asymmetry of will but more often operate in
engagement, 50 soldiers fought off 5,000 Matabele           cross-cultural conflicts. Specifically, an asymmetry
warriors with just four Maxim guns. However, dur-           of time perspective may occur when a committed
ing protracted wars, clever enemies tend to find            antagonist enters a war and the opponent can only
counters to asymmetric technology. Vietnam pro-             sustain the will for a short war. The United States
vides the clearest example.                                 prefers to resolve armed conflict quickly, in part,
   Asymmetries of will are important when one an-           because congressional and public support for any
tagonist sees its survival or vital interest at stake and   use of force that does not involve vital national in-
the other is protecting or promoting less-than-vital in-    terests is limited. Furthermore, many of the ad-
terests. This type of asymmetry played a role during        vanced weapons and systems the US military uses,
conflicts in Vietnam, Somalia and Iraq. An asym-            such as precision bombs and missiles, are in lim-
metry of will leads the antagonist with the higher          ited supply. Restocking requires restarting dormant
stake to bear greater costs, accept greater risk and        production lines.
undertake actions the less-committed antagonist                Because of US global security commitments, in-
might eschew on moral or legal grounds. Asymme-             volvement in a protracted conflict might encourage
tries of will are most relevant at the level of grand       enemies to undertake aggression, believing US re-
strategy. At the operational and tactical levels, the       sources are spread too thin. US advantages in stra-
equivalent of an asymmetry of will is an asymme-            tegic mobility match the desire for a quick win—
try of morale, which can be crucial, even decisive.         the preferred operational style. Knowing this
Napoleon Bonaparte held, “In war the moral is to            preference and knowing or suspecting the limited
the material as three to one.” Asymmetries of will          US stockpile of precision weapons, an adversary
are closely related to normative asymmetries be-            might seek to extend a conflict. In addition to strain-
tween antagonists with different ethical or legal stan-     ing the quick-win preference, if the weapons be-
dards. The United States faces enemies willing to           come more blunt, collateral casualties will rise, and
use terrorism, ethnic cleansing and human shields.          the enemy might gain a moral advantage. Con-
In the long term such actions can be self-defeating         versely, the shorter a conflict involving the US mili-
if they alienate potential supporters, but they can         tary, the greater the US advantage will be. Asym-
generate desired results in the short term, particu-        metries of patience have a cultural component as
larly by highlighting an asymmetry of will.                 well. Americans are instinctively impatient, seeking
   Asymmetries of organization can provide great            fast resolution of any problem. This attitude con-
advantage to even a state without other advantages.         trasted with Asian patience and willingness to pre-
Examples include the Macedonian phalanx, Swiss              vail in a conflict that lasts for years or decades. While

MILITARY REVIEW    l   July-August 2001                                                                           27
                                                                                         A Somali gunman flees
                                                                                         from 10th Mountain
                                                                                         Division troops during
                                                                                         operations in Somalia.

                                                                                                                      US Army
            Asymmetries of will are important when one antagonist sees its survival or vital
   interest at stake and the other is protecting or promoting less-than-vital interests. This type of
asymmetry played a role during conflicts in Vietnam, Somalia and Iraq. An asymmetry of will leads
  the antagonist with the higher stake to bear greater costs, accept greater risk and undertake
            actions the less-committed antagonist might eschew on moral or legal grounds.

sweeping cultural generalizations are fraught with         rapid. Part of the solution involves shifting attitudes.
danger, there is at least a kernel of truth in this one.   Innovation and creativity must be nurtured and val-
Somewhere, the US military is likely to face an en-        ued throughout uniformed and DOD civilian ranks.
emy attempting to take advantage of an asymmetry           While iconoclasts and nonconformists should not
of patience.                                               rule the military, they should be valued, preserved
                                                           and heard. Experimentation and research should
StrategicConcepts                                          focus on strategic and operational adaptability. For
   The operational concepts that form the basis of         instance, experiments should create new types of or-
Joint Vision 2020 — full-spectrum dominance                ganizations to deal with new types of enemies. If
derived from dominant maneuver, precision en-              networked nonstate enemies become a major threat
gagement, focused logistics and full-dimensional           to US security, how quickly could the nation orga-
protection—are designed to take advantage of posi-         nize to deal with them? In all likelihood, some fu-
tive asymmetry but are also relevant to countering         ture US military components must acquire network
negative asymmetry. To best meet asymmetric chal-          characteristics to counter networked enemies.
lenges, though, the US military should adopt and              DOD experimentation should focus more on po-
develop five strategic concepts that build on the joint    tential asymmetric challenges. Today, the enemy in
vision operational concepts.                               most armed service and DOD experiments or war
   Maximum conceptual and organizational                   games remains a traditional, mechanized, state mili-
adaptability. Two characteristics of asymmetric            tary that has invaded a neighboring state. Asymmet-
threats are particularly important: US defense plan-       ric war games should form a greater proportion of
ners today cannot know precisely what asymmet-             the total. Joint war games should be a robust test of
ric threats will emerge or prove effective; and the        transformation and modernization programs, not a
effectiveness of asymmetric threats sooner or later        confirmation or endorsement process. At the National
declines as the enemy adjusts. By maximizing               Training Center, Fort Irwin, California, the Army has
conceptual and organizational adaptability and flex-       learned the value of ignominious defeat at the hands
ibility, the US military can assure that it will rap-      of a highly skilled Red team. For some reason, the
idly counter emerging asymmetric threats and speed         same process is seldom applied to strategic war
the process that renders asymmetric threats insig-         games. Both congressional and DOD leaders must
nificant or ineffective. The military that develops        recognize that a Blue war-game defeat does not in-
new concepts and organizations more quickly than           validate a transformation or modernization program
its opponents has a decided advantage.                     but simply provides a means of adjustment and re-
   DOD must institutionalize ways to keep adapta-          finement.
tion and transformation processes continuous and              The process of focusing more analysis and ex-

28                                                                           July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
                                                         US Navy
perimentation on asymmetric challenges would be
strengthened by an institutional focus. DOD should
fund a center to study emerging threats that is
closely linked to the joint community, the combat-
ant commands and the armed services but indepen-
dent enough to be creative and innovative. This cen-
ter should be tied to the joint experimentation
process at the US Joint Forces Command, the
Pentagon’s Office of Net Assessment, the Defense
Intelligence Agency’s futures programs, service ex-
perimentation programs, concept development cen-
ters and battle labs. It should also have strong in-
teragency and multinational connections.
   At a somewhat different level, the US military
should prepare for asymmetric challenges by mak-
ing unit and system modularity a central criterion
during force development. Versatility and agility are                SH-60F carrying a “Rigid Duck” raiding craft as
the touchstones. The armed services and joint com-                   a streamlined external load. Black Hawks can be
                                                                     configured for medical evacuation, antisubmarine
munity should experiment with ways to build task-                    warfare, combat assaults, special operations and more.
specific organizations rapidly. The US military’s
experience forming joint task forces must expand
to explore how future organizations would build
interagency and multinational ties. Modularity
should also be a criterion for developing and pro-
curing systems. Future multipurpose systems like
the Black Hawk helicopter and the high-mobility,                      Modularity should also be a criterion
multipurpose, wheeled vehicle (HMMWV) could                    for developing and procuring systems. Future
perform an even wider array of tasks and be                       multipurpose systems like the Black Hawk
reconfigured according to the mission. This would                helicopter, and HMMWV could perform an
give the Army an added degree of flexibility and                even wider array of tasks and be reconfigured
better prepare it for asymmetric challenges. While                 according to the mission. . . . While multi-
multipurpose systems are seldom as effective as                purpose systems are seldom as effective as single-
single-purpose ones, multipurpose systems make the               purpose ones, multipurpose systems make the
most sense in an age of strategic uncertainty and              most sense in an age of strategic uncertainty and
could serve as a foundation for single-purpose sys-              could serve as a foundation for single-purpose
tems if long-term needs become clear.                               systems if long-term needs become clear.
   Focused intelligence. There is growing agree-
ment in the defense and intelligence communities
that US intelligence efforts need to refocus on non-               are not always available or reliable. Rather than
traditional threats. Intelligence collection, analysis             relying solely on overhead imagery and signal in-
and dissemination should become increasingly in-                   tercepts, nanotechnology and robotics could form
teragency for maximum effectiveness. In addition,                  intelligence systems that surpass past technical-
intelligence focused on asymmetric threats should                  collection systems and HUMINT in some tasks. De-
make greater use of open sources—publicly avail-                   fending against asymmetric challenges demands
able information.12 The 1999 Joint Strategy Review                 bold, new collection methods.
suggested that the United States should immediately                   Minimal vulnerability. The Joint Vision 2020
undertake a multiagency, holistic assessment of its                concept of full-dimensional protection applies to
vulnerability to asymmetric threats.13 The intelli-                asymmetric threats. Current force-protection efforts,
gence community must help improve adaptability                     augmented by developments in robotics and nonle-
and flexibility, particularly by strengthening the Red             thal weapons, can help counter terrorism and other
teams in war games and experimentation.                            attempts to cause casualties and erode US will.
   The Joint Strategy Review emphasizes the need                   Minimal vulnerability would also require resilience
for improved human intelligence (HUMINT) to                        or nondependence on systems susceptible to attack.
counter asymmetric threats.14 New technology for                   Single sources of anything invite asymmetric at-
collecting, assessing, fusing and disseminating in-                tacks, but with some systems, redundancy may be
telligence would also be helpful. HUMINT sources                   too expensive. All reasonable steps should be taken

MILITARY REVIEW   l   July-August 2001                                                                                        29
to avoid dependence on any single operational             reconfiguration area would be kept to a minimum
method or system. For instance, if the US military        and replenished only when necessary. Repair and
becomes so dependent on information superiority           hospital facilities would also be mobile and dis-
that it cannot function without it, asymmetric attacks    persed.
against information systems could be devastating or          Theater reconfiguration areas could be protected
even decisive. Even as the US military increases its      by conventional concealment methods, electronic
use of digital technology, it should sustain some skill   masking, and a laser-based missile and air defense
at older, low-tech methods.                               web combining ground-based fire platforms; long-
   Finding ways to project power against an enemy         loiter and quick-launch, unmanned aerial vehicle fire
who employs an access-denial strategy and to sus-         platforms; and space-based sensor and fire plat-
                                                          forms. Autonomous sentry systems somewhere be-
                                                          tween a full-fledged robot and a mobile, smart mine
      Innovation and creativity must be                   could provide local security. Host nation support
nurtured and valued throughout uniformed                  would be minimum to protect operational security.
 and DOD civilian ranks. While iconoclasts                To complicate targeting by enemies, several decoy
  and nonconformists should not rule the                  theater reconfiguration areas could be set up in each
 military, they should be valued, preserved and           country that allowed them. Such a shell game could
heard. Experimentation and research should                provide effective deception and thus complicate
 focus on strategic and operational adapta-               attempts to strike theater reconfiguration areas
  bility. For instance, experiments should                with missiles.
 create new types of organizations to deal                   Full-dimension precision. The US military will
          with new types of enemies.                      remain vulnerable to normative and political asym-
                                                          metries. The more operations limit collateral dam-
                                                          age and reach a speedy resolution, the less likely
tain projected forces without forward bases would         these challenges will prove important. One way of
be an important part of minimizing vulnerability.         doing that is with greater full-dimension precision.
Since the campaigns of Generals Ulysses S. Grant          One component of this is physical precision—the
and William T. Sherman, the “American way of              ability to hit targets with great accuracy from great
war” has called for stocking massive amounts of           distances with precisely the desired physical effect.
materiel and supplies in theater for decisive victory.    Physical precision derives from improved intelli-
This strategy is contingent on the enemy’s inability      gence, guidance systems and, increasingly, from the
to strike rear bases effectively. But if future enemies   ability to adjust weapon effects. A proposed elec-
have precision-guided munitions, weapons of mass          tromagnetic gun, for instance, could be adjusted
destruction and delivery systems, in-theater sanctu-      from a nonlethal setting to an extremely lethal one.15
aries may not exist. Even air superiority and theater     But there is more to precision than simply hitting
missile defense would be inadequate against a             the right target. Military strategists and command-
nuclear-armed enemy, since they cannot assure 100-        ers must think in terms of psychological precision
percent effectiveness. The future US military could       as well—structuring a military operation to shape
confront a counterdeployment strategy that uses           the attitudes, beliefs and perceptions among the en-
sabotage or precision-guided munitions and ballis-        emy and other observers, whether local noncombat-
tic missiles to attack bases and staging areas in the     ants or global audiences.
United States and in a theater of operations, and            Technology can help future militaries attain
threaten states that provide support, bases, staging      greater psychological precision. It is vital to have a
areas or overflight rights to the United States.          very wide range of military options—a “rheostatic”
   An enemy using a counterdeployment strategy            capability assures that an operation has the desired
could be blunted in several interrelated ways. One        psychological effect. This suggests a growing need
would be through greater intratheater mobility via        for effective nonlethal weapons, particularly when
lighter forces and systems such as high-speed,            the psychological objective is to demonstrate the
shallow-draft, sealift vessels. Another would be          futility of opposition without killing so many of the
using theater reconfiguration areas located in remote     enemy or noncombatants that the enemy’s will is
areas of agreeable nations with a landing strip as the    steeled rather than broken or that public opposition
only fixed part of the base. All of the other things      is mobilized. Some advocates of nonlethal weapons
needed to prepare equipment and troops for com-           go so far as to see them as the central element in
bat could be mobile, concentrating just before an         future armed conflict.16 While this is probably an
inbound aerial convoy arrived and dispersing as           overstatement, such weapons will be integral to psy-
soon as it left. Inventorying supplies at a theater       chological precision.

30                                                                         July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
                                                                                                                         ASYMMETRIC WARFARE
   Different forms of psychotechnology might allow
greater psychological precision. Conceivably, tech-                                         Single sources of anything invite
nology could give militaries the ability to alter the                                asymmetric attacks, but with some systems,
perceptions of targets, perhaps causing intense fear                                redundancy may be too expensive. All reason-
or calm. But any state with the capability and incli-                                able steps should be taken to avoid dependence
nation to develop such technology should be very                                    on any single operational method or system.
careful because of the potential for violating basic                                 For instance, if the US military becomes so
human rights. In most cases, technology for psycho-                                  dependent on information superiority that it
logical manipulation should be eschewed. Some                                          cannot function without it, asymmetric
state or organization without ethical and legal con-                                  attacks against information systems could
straints may field an array of psychotechnology                                              be devastating or even decisive.
weapons. Then the United States will have to de-
cide whether to respond in kind or seek other means
of defense. The potential for a psychotechnology                                    to develop a robust and integrated homeland secu-
arms race is real.                                                                  rity strategy and organization. Many homeland de-
   Technology is only part of psychological preci-                                  fense efforts are already under way, particularly in
sion. Much psychological analysis, particularly deal-                               infrastructure protection and military roles. One im-
ing with anxiety and fear, is not adequately inte-                                  portant future task is sealing the seams between the
grated into military planning. When the goal is to                                  agencies involved in homeland defense since gaps
create fear and anxiety or collapse the enemy’s will,                               create vulnerabilities that an enemy might exploit.
the operation should be phased and shaped for maxi-                                    Ultimately, negative asymmetry can be mitigated
mum psychological impact. Successful militaries                                     but not eliminated. That said, the United States is
must assure that operational and strategic planning                                 not on the verge of disaster. US military organiza-
staffs are psychologically astute, whether by edu-                                  tions, technology, strategy and doctrine can either
cating the planners themselves or using information                                 deal with most asymmetric threats or be quickly
technology to provide access to psychologists, cul-                                 modified to do so. The more adaptable, flexible and
tural psychologists and members of other cultures.                                  strategically agile the US military is, the better it will
They should undertake cross-cultural psychological                                  be prepared to deal with asymmetry. Positive asym-
studies aimed at building databases and models that                                 metry will continue to provide the US military with
can help guide operational planning.                                                advantages over most enemies. Even so, DOD
   Integrated homeland security. Modern technol-                                    should continue to refine its understanding of asym-
ogy and globalization have changed strategic geog-                                  metric challenges. A more general and complete
raphy. The United States can no longer assume that                                  definition of asymmetry is needed as a foundation
conflict and warfare will only take place far from                                  for doctrine and for integrating maximum adaptabil-
the homeland. Future enemies will have the means                                    ity and flexibility, focused intelligence, minimal vul-
to strike at the US homeland with missiles, infor-                                  nerability, full-dimension precision and integrated
mation attacks or terrorism. The United States needs                                homeland security into US security strategy.
    1. John Foster Dulles, “The Evolution of Foreign Policy,” Department of State   Joint Chiefs of Staff [CJCS], 2000), 5.
Bulletin, 25 January 1962, 107-10.                                                      8. Joint Strategy Review (Washington, DC: CJCS, 1999), 2.
    2. Joint Publication (JP) 1, Joint Warfare of the Armed Forces of the United        9. Mao Tse-Tung, “On Protracted War,” in Selected Works of Mao Tse-Tung,
States (Washington, DC: US Government Printing Office [GPO], 10 January 1995),      Vol II (Peking: Foreign Languages Press, 1967), 172.
IV-10 and IV-11.                                                                       10. Joint Vision 2020, 5.
    3. The same discussion of symmetrical and asymmetrical actions is included         11. For elaboration on this idea, see Steven Metz, Armed Conflict in the 21st
in the Joint Doctrine Encyclopedia, 16 July 1997, 668-670; and JP 3-0, Doctrine     Century: The Information Revolution and Post-Modern Warfare (Carlisle Barracks,
for Joint Operations (Washington, DC: GPO, 1 February 1995), III-10.                PA: US Army War College, Strategic Studies Institute, 2000), 56-59.
    4. Secretary of Defense William S. Cohen, Report of the Quadrennial Defense        12. Robert D. Steele, “Open Source Intelligence: What Is It? Why Is It Impor-
Review, May 1997, Section II.                                                       tant to the Military?” <>; Steele, On
    5. Report of the National Defense Panel, “Transforming Defense: National        Intelligence: Spies and Secrecy in an Open World (Fairfax, VA: AFCEA Interna-
Security in the 21st Century,” (Washington, DC: December 1997), 11.                 tional Press, 2000), 105-26. Steele is one of the pioneers and most ardent advo-
    6. During 1998, based on a contract from the intelligence community,            cates of open-source intelligence.
CENTRA Technologies formed a blue ribbon panel on asymmetric warfare. A                13. Joint Strategy Review, 31-32.
workshop held in December included Dr. John Hillen, Mr. Richard Kerr, Dr.              14. Ibid.
Steven Metz, Admiral William Small, Professor Martin van Creveld and Lieuten-          15. US Army Chief Scientist A. Michael Andrews interviewed by Ron Laurenzo,
ant General Paul Van Riper. The project apparently was dropped after this           Defense Week, 29 November 1999, 6.
meeting.                                                                               16. John B. Alexander, Future War: Non-Lethal Weapons in Twenty-First Cen-
    7. Joint Vision 2020 (Washington, DC: Department of Defense, Chairman,          tury Warfare (New York: St. Martin’s, 1999).

                              Steven Metz is research professor of National Security Affairs, US Army War College,
                           Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania. He received a B.A. and an M.A. from the University of South
                           Carolina and a Ph.D. from Johns Hopkins University. He has served in various faculty posi-
                           tions at the US Army War College, the US Army Command and General Staff College and
                           several universities. He has served as an adviser to political organizations and campaigns,
                           and on national security policy panels. He has authored more than 80 publications on na-
                           tional security issues and has been a frequent contributor to Military Review since 1987.

MILITARY REVIEW             l   July-August 2001                                                                                                                31
      HE TERMS “ASYMMETRY,” “asymmetric
T     warfare,” “asymmetric approaches” and “asym-
metric options” are popular sound bites found in
                                                             [One] assessment listed four asymmetric
                                                           responses that other nations could take to
many military journals today. Asymmetric-related         counter US superiority: acquiring weapons of
terms are commonly associated with a potential            mass destruction; acquiring high-technology
opponent’s operations or actions against US inter-       weapons; acquiring cyberweapons; and fighting
ests or forces. The attacks are commonly described        in environments that degrade US capabilities.
as chemical, biological, nuclear, terrorist or infor-      The logic of considering these approaches
mation attacks, or attacks against weak points. Ar-      asymmetric escapes reason, for the first three
guably, these attacks are not asymmetric. In fact,             responses would improve symmetry.
except for the terrorist example, these are symmetri-
cal attacks. The United States has chemical, biologi-    biological weapons, then we should worry. In some
cal, nuclear and information means; therefore, such      cultures, social and religious reasons may override
attacks cannot be asymmetric.                            national interests when choosing whether to use
   The asymmetric aspect of a chemical, nuclear,         such weapons.
information or traditional attack actually relates to
asymmetries in capabilities, reliance, vulnerabilities   WhatisAsymmetry?
and values. The capabilities of certain forces—some         Judging by the multiple applications of the term
information systems can shut down command and            in military journals—“not fighting fair,” “attacking
control systems and prevent nuclear systems from         a weak point,” “information or cyberwar,” “public
launching—constitute one variable. A nation’s re-        relations war,” “weapons of mass destruction”—
liance on a particular system is another. For ex-        very few people understand asymmetry’s formal
ample, both sides can have information weapons,          definition. This is understandable since joint doctrine
but one side may rely more on them than the other.       does not define the term.1 One civilian lexicon ex-
The vulnerability of a system or platform’s perfor-      plains asymmetry using the mathematical term “in-
mance parameters, operating principles or situational    commensurability,” the relationship between things
context is another asymmetric opening, the one most      which have no common measure.2 Another civilian
often associated with weak spots. Finally, cultural      definition refers to defective, disproportionate cor-
values determine whether a nation will or will not       respondence between things or their parts.3
use one of these methods.                                   Other non-English-speaking cultures define the
   The Russo-US relationship provides an example         term in more distinct ways. A Russian dictionary
of such reasoning. Both countries have had biologi-      definition of asymmetry is “the absence or destruc-
cal and nuclear weapons for decades, yet no one has      tion of symmetry.”4 This concept implies a more
called this an asymmetric Russian threat. Neither        active role in changing symmetry’s parameters than
side has used these weapons because of discussions       the US or British definition, even the creation of
that led to a common understanding and because of        asymmetry. Compared to Western deductive think-
a value structure that placed national interests above   ing, the Russian dialectic thought process of thesis
other interests. However, if a country that conducts     and antithesis encourages an analysis of a situation
operations based on very different values obtains        from a different, more confrontational perspective.

32                                                                         July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
US Navy

                                                                         A Predator flies above the USS Carl Vinson during
                                                                         a training exercise. The unmanned aerial vehicle
                                                                         broadcast real-time infrared and color video to
                                                                         intelligence analysts and controllers on the ground
                                                                         and the ships of the carrier battle group.

                     While it may be hard for US military leaders to recognize, the dictionary
             definition suggests that the United States is the world’s most asymmetric military force.
             While degrees of symmetry exist between other forces in developed countries, no one can
              symmetrically match up with US equipment and firepower. This was most evident in
                          the after-action comments following the conflict over Kosovo.

             There is no distinct word for asymmetry in Chi-       comments following the conflict over Kosovo. De-
          nese. To express this concept one would negate the       partment of Defense (DOD) officials admonished
          word for “to be symmetrical.” This word for sym-         other NATO countries that their equipment was not
          metry, duicheng, is also comprised of two charac-        compatible with or as capable as US equipment.
          ters. The word dui in ancient texts means “to re-           If the United States is the most asymmetric force
          spond,” “to face or face off,” “to match”—both in        in the world, why are potential threats to US secu-
          the sense of complement but also in the sense of         rity almost always labeled asymmetric? For ex-
          enemies matching in skill. The term cheng initially      ample, the US National Defense University (NDU),
          signified the concept of “a balance” and then            in its 1998 strategic assessment, listed four asym-
          evolved into a broader semantic sense of “to accord      metric responses that other nations could take to
          with.”5 Thus, in China, asymmetry would involve          counter US superiority: acquiring weapons of mass
          things not in accord with, out of balance, not re-       destruction; acquiring high-technology weapons;
          sponding and not matching or facing one another.         acquiring cyberweapons; and fighting in environ-
             These definitions indicate that our understanding     ments that degrade US capabilities. The logic of
          of asymmetry has strayed and become misused.             considering these approaches asymmetric escapes
          None of the recognized definitions discusses weak        reason, for the first three responses would improve
          points, unfair fighting or nontraditional means that     symmetry according to the dictionary definitions.
          many authors assert. The term apparently assumes         The United States has all of these capabilities
          whatever meaning military authors wish to portray        now; if someone else acquires them, then we are
          and is thrown around like the grammatically incor-       in a symmetric relationship. Threats are mislabeled
          rect term “irregardless.”                                “asymmetric” because we do not understand what
             While it may be hard for US military leaders to       asymmetry means.
          recognize, the dictionary definition suggests that the      Some highly respected publications stress that if
          United States is the world’s most asymmetric mili-       an opponent does not fight the way we expect, then
          tary force. While degrees of symmetry exist be-          we automatically label his fighting technique asym-
          tween other forces in developed countries, no one        metric. The NDU study stated that “asymmetric
          can symmetrically match up with US equipment and         threats or techniques are a version of ‘not fighting
          firepower. This was most evident in the after-action     fair,’ which can include the use of surprise in all its

          MILITARY REVIEW   l   July-August 2001                                                                         33
operational and strategic dimensions and the use of       sions of the threat that each poses to the other—can
weapons in ways unplanned by the U.S.” If this defi-      be quite problematic. But it is a process that must
nition were accurate, Serbs and Iraqis could claim        be undertaken if we are to give due weight to all
that NATO and the multinational coalition did not         the relevant elements of power.” 7 Threats in the
fight fair—face to face—but from afar with long-          sense of capabilities, reliance on systems and vul-
range, precision weapons. With such a broad appli-        nerabilities are important in this regard.
                                                             Steven Metz and Douglas Johnson of the US
                                                          Army War College offer another visionary defini-
       Perhaps the most asymmetric
                                                          tion of asymmetry: “acting, organizing and think-
   and least-discussed element is values.
                                                          ing differently than opponents in order to maximize
Operating principles—individual, social group
                                                          one’s own advantages, exploit an opponent’s weak-
 and national values—all play a role in the
              information age.                            nesses, attain the initiative or gain greater freedom
                                                          of action. It can be political-strategic, military-
   Foreign societies may believe it is easier to          strategic, operational or a combination of these. It
attack the Western psyche or will to fight than to        can entail different methods, technologies, values,
  meet it on the battlefield in a contest between         organizations, time perspectives or some combina-
technologies, a truly asymmetric approach from            tion of these.” The authors add that asymmetry can
              the Western viewpoint.                      be short-term or long-term, deliberate or by default,
                                                          discrete or pursued in conjunction with symmetric
                                                          approaches and can have both psychological and
cation, any action can be considered asymmetric and       physical dimensions.8
further confuse the issue. The terms “atypical” or           Retired Brigadier General David L. Grange writes
“nontraditional” better fit a situation in which an op-   that asymmetry is best understood as a strategy, tac-
ponent uses an unexpected technique or exploits           tic or method of warfare and conflict. It is not some-
some factor better or faster than his opponent. The       thing new, he reminds us, noting that strategists de-
imprecise US terminology is faulty.                       fine asymmetric warfare as conflict deviating from
   An Australian officer, Major J.J. Frewen, offered      the norm or an indirect approach to affect the bal-
a reason for this imprecision. He noted that global-      ance of forces.9
ization has expanded the definition of national se-          Perhaps the most asymmetric and least-discussed
curity beyond physical security to include economic,      element is values. Operating principles—individual,
environmental, informational and cultural security.6      social group and national values—all play a role
Threats to these elements are often considered            in the information age. There is always a lack of
asymmetric by many US academic institutes and             symmetry in values, even between two people. For
leaders when, more precisely, these are matters for       example, discussions of abortion, homosexual-
which our armed forces are not well designed. They        ity and religion bring out individual differences.
undermine national interests without shots being          In the international arena, some decisionmakers
fired and demonstrate that military intervention is       abide by international treaties; others do not. The
problematic when the definition of “decisive force”       values of President George H. Bush and Iraqi leader
is unclear. Frewen notes that problems in Somalia         Saddam Hussein during the Gulf War clearly rep-
were caused not by a lack of armored vehicles but         resented this asymmetry. Bush prevented a march
by failure to understand the environment. The prob-       on Baghdad because it was not in the UN mandate,
lem was about “apples” attending an “oranges”             while Hussein ignored international treaties and in-
event; any hardware-only solution suggests asym-          vaded Kuwait.
metric vulnerability.
   Some analysts have defined asymmetry with vi-          VulnerabilitiesandAsymmetries
sion. Lloyd J. Matthews offers a strategic vision for        Many authors consider asymmetry to be the abil-
his description of asymmetry. He defines it as any        ity to exploit situations by attacking weak points or
militarily significant disparity between contending       using nontraditional approaches in unexpected
parties that clearly fits the “lack or want” of sym-      ways. These vulnerabilities can be uncovered by
metry idea expressed in Webster’s. He notes: “The         using a specific methodology to examine a situation.
process of calculating the resultant of the various       The methodology uses one of four means:
vectors of power wielded by two asymmetrically               l Performance parameters.
related opponents—in order to measure the dimen-             l Situational context.

34                                                                         July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
                                                                                       ASYMMETRIC WARFARE

                                                           In January 2000,
                                                           Russian forces
                                                           stayed outside
                                                           Grozny, nullifying
                                                           Chechen terrain
                                                           advantages by
                                                           destroying the city
                                                           with artillery and
                                                           tank fire.

               Joint doctrine does not define the term [but] . . . the NDU study stated that
      “asymmetric threats or techniques are a version of ‘not fighting fair,’ which can include the
      use of surprise in all its operational and strategic dimensions and the use of weapons in ways
           unplanned by the U.S.” If this definition were accurate, Serbs and Iraqis could claim
         that NATO and the multinational coalition did not fight fair—face to face—but from
       afar with long-range, precision weapons. With such a broad application, any action can be
                           considered asymmetric and further confuse the issue.

      l Operating principles and rules of engagement.         destruction or annihilation, prolonged attrition or
      l Will.                                                 creating large groups of refugees.
     Each mean uses nontraditional or intellectual               Performance parameters. Weapon parameters,
  methods to exploit a situation, degrading capabili-         whether signature, such as sound or image display,
  ties and inducing unpredictability and chaos into           or performance characteristics, are susceptible to
  military operations. It limits advantages, capitalizes      manipulation and are vulnerable. The Serbian mili-
  on weaknesses, and tests patience and will. The             tary demonstrated its awareness of this principle
  methodology is a thinking man’s strategy that en-           during the recent conflict in Kosovo. The Serbs re-
  courages out-of-the-box concepts that could be la-          portedly sent air defense crews to Iraq in February
  beled asymmetric because they capitalize on asym-           1999 to study Iraqi procedures. The Iraqis have
  metries in capabilities and reliance.                       fought against these planes and tactics for 10 years.
     Such moves would be innovative or bold actions           Who could better tell Serbian crews what a NATO
  that could apply equally to either high- or low-tech        or US air attack might look like? Every performance
  opponents. It might mean using low-tech options to          parameter was recorded on radar.
  counter high-tech equipment—the rocket-propelled               In another example, the Serbs reportedly used
  grenade (RPG) launcher versus a helicopter or us-           smoke to deflect NATO precision-guided weapons.
  ing fuel-air explosives on an opponent. Or it could         When the pilot could no longer keep the cross hair
  mean attempts to strike a people’s political will and       on a smoked target, the weapons went off-course
  patience. The United States lost the battle of wills        as the performance parameter was exploited. In
  at home but not on the Vietnam battlefield. Asym-           Chechnya, the Chechens knew the elevation and de-
  metry can even express itself as a strategy of mass         pression limits of the Russian T-72 battle tank’s

  MILITARY REVIEW   l   July-August 2001                                                                        35
                          An Iraqi SA-3 Goa crew trains
                          with their medium-altitude
                          surface-to-air missile battery.

                                                                      force’s superior firepower, maneuverability and in-
                                                                      telligence capability. In the city environment, the
                                                                      high-tech force often finds that its force structure
                                                                      does not fit the terrain. The high-tech force may find
                                                                      itself opposed by an entire population, as the Rus-
                                                                      sians were in Grozny in 1996. A high-tech force,
                                                                      on the other hand, could prevent the low-tech force
                                                                      from entering the city.
                                                                         Operating principles and rules of engagement.
                                                                      Operating principles of presidents, parliaments and
                                                                      armed forces vary from nation to nation. Interna-
                                                                      tional treaties bind most nations to some common

                                                            US Army
                                                                      principles, but this adherence varies with time and
                                                                      opponents. Warsaw Pact members’ allegiance to the
    Weapon parameters, whether signature,                             Soviet Union waned and disappeared in the 1990s.
such as sound or image display, or performance                        The recent NATO operation over Kosovo offers a
 characteristics, are susceptible to manipulation                     stark example. Breaking with traditions of time,
   and are vulnerable. The Serbian military                           opponent and principles, NATO acted out of area
  demonstrated its awareness of this principle                        and may have placed human rights above sover-
during the recent conflict in Kosovo. The Serbs                       eignty. If democratic nations bend their operating
  reportedly sent air defense crews to Iraq in                        principles, what type of behavior and adherence to
    February 1999 to study Iraqi procedures.                          operating principles might we expect from totalitar-
                                                                      ian or rogue regimes?
                                                                         Below the level of presidents and parliaments,
main gun. They hid below the depression level in                      combat involves operating principles. Combatants
basements and in windows above the maximum el-                        can estimate opposing leaders’ tolerance for loss and
evation while fighting in Grozny during 1994 and                      damage, and threshold for capitulation. Unlike
1995 and used RPGs to immobilize tanks.                               nation-states, guerillas are not bound by international
   When NATO’s air forces engaged Serbia’s armed                      treaties, codes of conduct or operating principles.
forces, Serbian deceptions fooled NATO’s high-tech                    This difficulty is compounded by Western reliance
equipment. The Serbian military found a flaw in                       on technology, a vulnerable operating principle in
NATO’s electronic-reconnaissance system—targets                       the age of off-the-shelf products. Sometimes underde-
could be seen but not clearly identified. Decoys and                  veloped countries can acquire high-tech equipment
fake positions protected the real ones. When the                      faster than developed countries because of research, de-
Serbs wanted to block NATO’s thermal-imaging                          velopment and acquisition time lines: “In a world in
systems, they used industrial heat sources to con-                    which state-of-the-art is off-the-shelf, industry, and
struct “thermal-cover” positions to protect tanks and                 potentially our foes, can obtain better information
artillery.                                                            systems and technology cheaper and faster than
   Another performance parameter is that of an ac-                    DOD because our current acquisition system buys
tual force: tempo. Understanding an opponent’s con-                   computers in the same way we buy bullets.” 10 Buying
cept of operational tempo gets one inside an impor-                   off the shelf becomes an asymmetric approach to
tant performance parameter of his force and                           developed nations’ longer-term procurement cycles.
provides an asymmetric option.                                           Operating principles also refer to the rules of en-
   Situational context. Situational context includes                  gagement, strategy, tactics and organizational prin-
an area’s dominant historical, cultural, geographic                   ciples that guide a side’s actions and decisions.
and political factors and how an opponent might                       NATO politicians decided that pilots could fly only
manipulate them. For example, what is the regime                      above 15,000 feet in Kosovo, a rule of engagement
protecting and what does it want? Other factors in-                   that affected precision.
clude a country’s particular warrior culture, guerilla                   Will. Colonel Charles Dunlap Jr. notes that the
movements or use of time and geography. In most                       Western mind-set Samuel Huntington describes in-
conflicts, both combatants have some elements that                    cludes concepts (values) such as “individualism, lib-
a thinking belligerent can exploit. Two unequal                       eralism, constitutionalism, human rights, equality,
forces, such as a high-tech force confronting a low-                  liberty, the rule of law, democracy, free markets,
tech force, fighting on similar terrain could use an                  [and] the separation of church and state.”11 How-
asymmetric approach. If a low-tech force moves to                     ever, entirely different principles and ideologies may
the sanctuary a city offers, it can offset the high-tech              drive logic in other cultures. Foreign societies may

36                                                                                      July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
                                                                                                                            ASYMMETRIC WARFARE
believe it is easier to attack the Western psyche
or will to fight than to meet it on the battlefield in a                                       Unlike nation-states, guerillas are
contest between technologies, a truly asymmetric                                         not bound by international treaties, codes of
approach from the Western viewpoint. Many                                             conduct or operating principles. This difficulty
Russians believe that the United States did just that                                      is compounded by Western reliance on
when it convinced Soviet Secretary General Mikhail                                     technology, a vulnerable operating principle in
Gorbachev to end the Cold War. His loss of will                                          the age of off-the-shelf products. Sometimes
allowed the West to win the Cold War without fir-                                     underdeveloped countries can acquire high-tech
ing a shot.                                                                             equipment faster than developed countries
   This discussion offers several conclusions. First,                                       because of research, development and
the word “asymmetry” highlights the problem of us-                                                  acquisition time lines.
ing terms loosely or improperly. When this happens,
words are not properly understood, confusion reigns,
and endless time is spent in futile explanation. The                                     Asymmetry is a matter of two unlike systems in-
international arena further exacerbates the situation                                 teracting, each within its capabilities. Attacks can
because different cultures interpret words with slight                                be swift (like an earthquake) or progressive (like
nuances. Not using one’s own language correctly                                       termites or rust, silently undermining a formidable
only heightens misunderstanding. Second, a meth-                                      structure). Progressive attacks are usually associated
odology that considers a situation asymmetrically                                     with cultural strengths than can be maintained for
offers a way to analyze and choose courses of ac-                                     long periods (sacrifice, resilience, deception, media
tion. Third, perspective is equally as important as                                   sympathy). Unlike systems do not understand how
methodology. The United States might be the most                                      to counter each other because of contradictory para-
asymmetric force on Earth, but Americans do not                                       digms. Consider the term “rasingingin.” When the
see themselves that way. They view others as an                                       term is understood as “singing in the rain,” then de-
asymmetric force or threat when, in fact, they are                                    ciphering other terms is easier. For example, the
not. US citizens should be proud to be on the right                                   word insertion paradigm helps interpret the term
side of the asymmetric ledger.                                                        “beilld” as “sick in bed.” Understanding the threat
   Asymmetries exist everywhere, of course. They                                      requires thinking in threat paradigms.
can be found in market economies of varying de-                                          Agents using asymmetric analytic methodolo-
grees versus centrally planned economies and in                                       gies—performance parameters, situational context,
political systems. There are also strategic, opera-                                   operating principles and will—start with an advan-
tional and tactical asymmetries. Strategically, theo-                                 tage. When striving to attack a vulnerability, hav-
rists discuss asymmetries in the force structure of                                   ing a template for action is the name of the game.
intercontinental ballistic missiles or information                                    Each methodology allows analysts to visualize bet-
warfare forces, while tactical-level analysts try to                                  ter how to attack and defend enemy and friendly
calculate the correlation of forces between sides. In                                 vulnerabilities. In the end, this is where the focus
these cases, asymmetries refer to quantities, total                                   should be and not on the so-called asymmetric
numbers or different philosophies. Asymmetries                                        threats of weapons of mass destruction and chemi-
also refer to approaches to attack vulnerabilities.                                   cal, biological and information attacks.
    1. Joint Chiefs of Staff, Joint Publication 1-02, Department of Defense Dictio-       7. Lloyd J. Matthews, Introduction in Challenging the United States Symmetri-
nary of Military and Associated Terms (Washington, DC: US Government Print-           cally and Asymmetrically: Can America be Defeated? ed. Lloyd J. Matthews
ing Office, 10 June 1998).                                                            (Carlisle Barracks, PA: US Army War College [USAWC], Strategic Studies Insti-
    2. Philip Babcock Gove, ed., Webster’s Third New International Dictio-            tute [SSI], July 1998), 20.
nary of the English Language (Unabridged) (Springfield, MA: Merriam-                      8. Steven Metz and Douglas V. Johnson II, “Asymmetry and U.S. Military Strat-
Webster Inc., 1981), 136.                                                             egy,” USAWC, SSI, January 2001, 5, 6.
    3. J.A. Simpson and E.S.C. Weiner, The Oxford English Dictionary, Second              9. David L. Grange, “Asymmetric Warfare: Old Method, New Concern,” ROA
Edition, Volume I (Oxford, UK: Clarendon Press, 1989), 738.                           National Security Report, March 2001, 1. Reprinted with permission from National
    4. S.I. Ozhegov, Dictionary of the Russian Language (Moscow, 1984), 29.           Strategy Forum Review, Winter 2000.
    5. Discussion between the author and Dr. Deborah Porter, University of Utah,        10. Ibid., 16.
Associate Professor of Chinese, 4 August 2000.                                          11. Charles Dunlap Jr., “Preliminary Observations: Asymmetrical Warfare and
    6. Discussion between the author and Royal Australian Infantry Major J.J.         the Western Mindset,” in Challenging the United States Symmetrically and Asym-
Frewen regarding a two-year exchange with the US Army as a G3 strategic plans         metrically: Can America Be Defeated?, Lloyd Matthews, ed. (Carlisle Barracks, PA:
officer, Headquarters, US Army Pacific.                                               USAWC, SSI, July 1998), 3.

                       Lieutenant Colonel Timothy L. Thomas, US Army, Retired, is an analyst with the US Army Foreign
                    Military Studies Office, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, and is an adjunct professor at the US Army’s Eur-
                    asian Institute, Garmisch, Germany. He received a B.S. from the US Military Academy and an M.A.
                    from the University of Southern California and is a graduate of the US Army Command and General
                    Staff College and the US Army Russian Institute (USARI). He has held various command and staff posi-
                    tions in the Continental United States and Europe, including director, Soviet Studies, USARI, Garmisch.
                    His article “China’s Electronic Strategies” appeared in the May-June 2001 issue of Military Review.

MILITARY REVIEW              l   July-August 2001                                                                                                                 37
T    HERE IS NOTHING NEW about asymme-
      try. Strategists and tacticians have always
sought to pit their strength against opponents’ weak-
                                                                Perhaps the most insidious consequence
                                                             of training focused on plan execution is that
nesses. During the Cold War, Western allies adopted       strategic, operational and tactical echelons all
an offset strategy, relying on technological superi-       are trained in the tactical time context. Strategic
ority to offset numerical inferiority. Both East and          and operational thinking are the domain
West found acceptable responses to the asymmetry.           of deliberate planning. Training in the tactical
The nature of asymmetry has changed dramatically,          time frame does not allow senior commanders
and organizational processes developed and institu-             to exercise strategic and operational
tionalized in response to Cold War realities inhibit                       decisionmaking.
appropriate responses to the new.
   Some aspects of government behavior are best
understood as “outputs of large organizations func-       ment and doctrine changed, and US forces adapted.
tioning according to standard patterns of behavior.”1     Adaptation to change centered in combat develop-
These standard patterns develop over time and be-         ment organizations, part of the producer chain of
come routine and institutionalized. Habitual relations    command far removed from the operational chain
and practices become part of the unquestioned way         of command. Separate organizational responses for
of doing business. They are often honed and opti-         plan development, plan execution and adaptation to
mized for measures such as efficiency, effectiveness      change are pronounced Cold War legacies.
or safety. When tasked, an organization’s response is
generally limited to its existing patterns of behavior.   OrganizationalResponsestotheColdWar
   Planning, training and adapting are three comple-         The Soviet Union was formidable, and we stud-
mentary ways a country prepares for war. A strong,        ied it continually for decades. We knew, with rea-
deliberate planning culture developed during the          sonable certainty, the enemy order of battle, his
Cold War in large and important segments of the           methods of operations, his equipment and the battle-
military, particularly in Europe, Korea and Wash-         field terrain. The Soviets were doctrinaire, known
ington. In addition to deliberate planning methods,       for centralized planning and withholding latitude
equally strong processes were established to support      from tactical commanders. Much was fixed, except
intelligence preparation of the battlefield (IPB).        whether and when war would be fought.
A sophisticated training method was developed                The US response was a complex biennial delib-
to complement the deliberate planning process.            erate planning process. The typical output was a
The deliberate planning process yielded deci-             lengthy OPLAN, including time-phased force de-
sions at the strategic and operational levels of war.     ployment data (TPFDD), which detailed unit move-
The output of deliberate planning, the operation plan     ment. In theater, our knowledge of the enemy and
(OPLAN), was input to training events. Plan execu-        the environment was so detailed that we produced
tion—including daily, tactical planning—was the           voluminous catalogs of targets matched to preferred
training focus.                                           destruction means and doctrinal templates that aided
   Higher-level decisions typically caused no observ-     in predicting enemy intent. The response to the
able effect during a real-time, week-long exercise.       wealth of available information was the sophisti-
Doctrine, organization and equipment remained con-        cated IPB process. Deliberate planning became in-
stant for NATO and Warsaw Pact forces during a            stitutionalized in US defense culture—in Washing-
training event, but throughout the Cold War, equip-       ton and in the field.2

38                                                                         July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
                                                                                   ASYMMETRIC WARFARE
    The deliberate planning process emphasizes plan
development; a separate training methodology was                One of the most dramatic post-Cold
developed to exercise plan execution. The classic          War trends is from permanent to temporary
training event is conducted in real time, begins when     commands, for example, from the dominant role
the first shots are fired, runs 24 hours a day for five     of unified commands and their component
to seven days, executes a previously constructed            headquarters to a reliance on ad hoc JTFs.
plan and traverses a single path in detail through a        A corollary trend is from a regional CINC’s
very bushy tree of possibilities.3 Typically, two full    area of operations to a JTF commander’s JOA,
echelons of command and staff constitute the pri-           the former characterized by an established
mary training audience. If the training audience is        and familiar infrastructure and the latter by
sufficiently tactical, real forces and equipment are          immature and unfamiliar infrastructure.
in the field, the air or at sea. If the training audi-
ence is at higher echelons, then some form of simu-
lation represents echelons below the staffs.              order of battle. Our organizational responses are still
   Perhaps the most insidious consequence of train-       based on those assumptions and must be reconsid-
ing focused on plan execution is that strategic, op-      ered in light of asymmetry.
erational and tactical echelons all are trained in the       One of the most dramatic post-Cold War trends
tactical time context. Strategic and operational think-   is from permanent to temporary commands, for ex-
ing are the domain of deliberate planning. Training       ample, from the dominant role of unified commands
in the tactical time frame does not allow senior          and their component headquarters to a reliance on
commanders to exercise strategic and operational          ad hoc joint task forces (JTFs). A corollary trend is
decisionmaking. In addition to the deliberate plan-       from a regional commander in chief’s (CINC’s) area
ning and training responses, a third response solidi-     of operations to a JTF commander’s joint operations
fied—adapting to change. The services imple-              area (JOA), the former characterized by an estab-
mented the combat development process separately          lished and familiar infrastructure and the latter by
in garrison. A long-term intelligence process focus-      immature and unfamiliar infrastructure. A second
ing on Soviet evolution supported combat develop-         corollary trend is from forward-deployed forces as-
ment. Unified commands nominally generated the            signed to a specific unified command to deployable
requirements that drove the combat development            forces apportioned to multiple commands. The
process. But, as often as not, technological oppor-       trend in planning is from deliberate planning to
tunity, the need to replace aging weapons and vi-         time-sensitive, or crisis-action, planning. The final
sions within various organizations in the producer        related trend is from warfare between conventional
chain of command, drove combat developments.              forces to military operations other than war involv-
Adapting to the evolving threat was the combat            ing conventional, unconventional and irregular
developers’ responsibility.                               forces.4
   Over the past several decades a complex of                Future conflict likely will bring together elements
sophisticated processes has spread across the             of both war and operations short of war. Asymmet-
department’s bureaucracy, each office operating           ric actors will engage US forces in complex ter-
with specialized skills in a different time frame. One    rain—including mountain, jungle, forest and urban
element of the larger process is deliberate planning      settings—with small bands of dedicated warriors
with voluminous output every two years. A sepa-           using low-technology weapons. They will attempt
rate training process produced units trained to doc-      to defeat US forces before destroying them by at-
trinal standards to accomplish the specific missions      tacking the command, control, communications,
derived from OPLANs. Warfighting commands                 computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnais-
trained to execute tasks doctrinally in real time; they   sance systems that unify dispersed units. Asymmet-
did not train to adapt in real time at the strategic,     ric threats recognize that the United States cannot
operational or tactical levels of war. The services       employ forces that it cannot deploy, and they will
also implemented the combat development process.          attack ports of embarkation and debarkation and
Combat developers were continually challenged to          lines of communications.
absorb new technology and weapon systems and re-             There is always uncertainty in war, but the over-
spond to Soviet advances with doctrine, organiza-         riding trend following the Cold War is a dramatic
tion and equipment.                                       increase in uncertainty. So much of what was known
                                                          and could be planned for is now and will remain
ChangesintheEnvironment                                   unknown. A useful way to summarize the changed
  Many Cold War assumptions are now invalid,              environment is the dramatic shift in balance between
including known threat, known doctrine and known          what is fixed (relatively certain) and what is variable

MILITARY REVIEW    l   July-August 2001                                                                       39
(relatively uncertain). The natural tendency is to      jures up pejorative images of the so-called “four-
apply familiar and institutionalized processes and      star squad leader.” The third model, command by
procedures to the new environment. But adapting         influence, involves broad, mission-oriented orders
to the new threat environment is not a matter of re-    and maximum initiative at the lowest echelons.
placing the Soviets with a different enemy that we      Any real command employs a hybrid of the three.
                                                        For example, the Navy often describes its model as
                                                        command by negation. Ship captains’ independent
          In training, repetition is key                command at sea subject to occasional interventions
    to making performance second nature.                from above constitutes a hybrid of command by in-
 Observation and feedback are necessary to              fluence and command by direction. When the air-
diagnose shortfalls and correct them in the next        borne warning and control system overrides the
   iteration. In learning, multiple trials are          ATO in real time, there is a command-by-plan and
necessary to explore alternatives; recognizing          command-by-direction hybrid.
 unexpected outcomes may be more important                 These command models are determined by who
         than measuring expected ones.                  exercises command and when. Command by plan
                                                        centralizes command in the higher-echelon com-
                                                        mander, who exercises it in advance by creating and
can come to know as well as our old foe. Some fu-       promulgating plans. Command by direction also
ture opponents may not exist today as formal orga-      centralizes command at the top, but it is exercised
nizations. Some unforeseen event may bring to-          through real-time orders. Command by influence
gether disparate groups into a new, loose coalition.    distributes command to lower echelons, where it is
   Not knowing the actors and conditions in advance     exercised by on-scene leaders. Adaptive command
requires adaptable organizations and processes to       is not about who commands or how but concerns
cope with emerging threats. Adaptations must con-       the command function; adapting doctrine, organi-
tinue throughout military missions. As US forces        zation and the concept of operations to the situation
succeed at countering a recently recognized method,     must be a function of all command levels.
an asymmetric foe will adapt to find other vulner-         US forces must adapt their doctrine—including
abilities. US forces must be trained, organized and     tactics, techniques and procedures—as asymmetric
equipped to adapt quickly and proactively.              opponents develop theirs. This response will be
                                                        driven more by contact with the enemy than by in-
RespondingtotheChangedEnvironment                       telligence gathered in advance. Adaptive command
   The United States and its allies had decades to      will require different and tighter integration of in-
understand the Cold War problem and propose so-         telligence and operations functions. Intelligence
lutions in the form of war plans. All that remained     functions that monitor the enemy’s physical dispo-
was to execute. We trained execution. Against a         sition before contact and assess battle damage af-
world of asymmetric actors, we must be prepared         terward will be inadequate. The intelligence func-
to learn as we go. That does not mean that we should    tion must include monitoring enemy behavior during
not plan for what we can, but we must build orga-       engagement and recognizing its evolution. Rather
nizations that can improvise. Those that can only       than train to doctrine, US forces must learn to an-
execute a plan according to fixed doctrine will fail    ticipate, recognize and adapt on the fly.
in the new environment. A proper response to the
changed environment is to adopt different command       Teaching,TrainingandLearning
habits—adaptive command. It is not so much a new           “Teaching,” “training” and “learning” have spe-
command model as a shift in emphasis that paral-        cific meanings here. Teaching imparts an assembled
lels the shift in emphasis between what is fixed and    body of knowledge, often through traditional class-
what is variable in the environment. Thomas J.          room methods, including reading and lecture. Train-
Czerwinski offers a lucid and useful taxonomy:          ing improves the performance of a particular skill
command by plan, command by direction and com-          set through practice. Learning creates new knowl-
mand by influence.5                                     edge over a problem space through exploration and
   The pervasive Soviet model was clearly com-          discovery. Teaching and training assume an exist-
mand by plan. The air tasking order (ATO) is an-        ing body of knowledge; learning does not.
other example, as are many of our Cold War delib-          Both training and learning rely on multiple itera-
erate planning processes. Command by direction          tions and observation. In training, repetition is key
brings to mind Napoleon Bonaparte sitting atop his      to making performance second nature. Observation
horse, surveying the entire battlefield and directing   and feedback are necessary to diagnose shortfalls
a cavalry charge at the decisive point. It also con-    and correct them in the next iteration. In learning,

40                                                                       July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
Paintings by John Singleton Copley, City of Boston loan to Museum of Fine Arts
                                                                                                                                                                     ASYMMETRIC WARFARE

                                                                                                                                Improbable unions, like
                                                                                                                             those between drug lords
                                                                                                                             and insurgents, are far
                                                                                                                             from new. Sam Adams
                                                                                                                             (right), the maestro of
                                                                                                                             Boston’s Revolutionary
                                                                                                                             street mobs, appears less
                                                                                                                             portly and weathered in
                                                                                                                             this portrait commissioned
                                                                                                                             by his benefactor and co-
                                                                                                                             conspirator John Hancock
                                                                                                                             (left). Note that unlike the
                                                                                                                             well-appointed Hancock,
                                                                                                                             who built his fortune through
                                                                                                                             shipping — and smuggling
                                                                                                                             — Adams is clothed in
                                                                                                                             simple Puritan garb.

                                                                                          Adapting to the new threat environment is not a matter of replacing the Soviets with
                                                                                  a different enemy that we can come to know as well as our old foe. Some future opponents may not
                                                                                 exist today as formal organizations. Some unforeseen event may bring together disparate groups into
                                                                                      a new, loose coalition. Not knowing the actors and conditions in advance requires adaptable
                                                                                                     organizations and processes to cope with emerging threats.

                                                                                 multiple trials are necessary to explore alternatives;      command—learning to anticipate, recognize and
                                                                                 recognizing unexpected outcomes may be more                 respond to change. Learning events are anchored
                                                                                 important than measuring expected ones.                     in a problem space and are designed to generate
                                                                                    A learning event, in contrast to a training event,       possible solutions through better recognition of a
                                                                                 would be conducted in fast or skip time and run             problem’s breadth and depth.
                                                                                 eight hours a day for several days, engaging the
                                                                                 commander and principal staff of only a single ech-         LearningattheTacticalLevel
                                                                                 elon.6 Students would prepare sketchy plans, con-              Leaders at the tactical level must be prepared
                                                                                 struct alternative doctrine and organization, execute       to adapt. The asymmetric actor may apply low-
                                                                                 the assemblage and repeat the process. Several al-          technology means and methods against US conven-
                                                                                 ternative courses of action are explored in a learn-        tional forces. Asymmetric actors continually adapt
                                                                                 ing event. Only one course of action is executed in         through trial and error, and the opposing tactical
                                                                                 a training event. Doctrine and organization are nec-        commander with limited doctrinal responses will be
                                                                                 essary inputs to a training event; candidate doctri-        the victim. General Montgomery C. Meigs, Com-
                                                                                 nal and organizational concepts are possible outputs        mander, US Army Europe and 7th Army, puts it
                                                                                 of a learning event. At the nexus of training and           this way:
                                                                                 experimentation, the learning process investigates             “We have become adept at replicating a set-piece
                                                                                 the unknown, guided by questions.7 Learning is              enemy for our units. We do a good job of giving
                                                                                 training—for adaptive command.                              them an opponent that fights with consistent, pre-
                                                                                    Appropriate preparation for a relatively certain         dictable doctrine and tactical procedures. We
                                                                                 threat environment is deliberate planning and IPB;          must now move to the next level and present an
                                                                                 training to doctrine; and a separate, long-term com-        enemy that uses asymmetrical approaches and
                                                                                 bat development process. Appropriate preparation            who learns from our Blue Force, adapting to avoid
                                                                                 for a relatively uncertain threat environment refines       our strengths and to exploit our tactical weaknesses
                                                                                 crisis-action planning, reconnaissance and adaptive         as he moves from battle to battle. . . . Units must

                                                                                 MILITARY REVIEW   l   July-August 2001                                                                       41
learn to anticipate the enemy’s actions, find him,         decisive battle—the close-with-and-destroy-the-
assess what he is doing, preempt him and reassess.”8       enemy school. Another school of thought focuses
   Greater emphasis needs to be placed on forming          on geography—the seize-and-hold-terrain school.
combined arms teams in response to evolving                Yet another focuses on penetrating a linear defense
threats. Military operations in urban environments,        to move deeply to the enemy’s soft rear area—the
for example, consistently show that combined arms          maneuver-warfare school. None of those may be rel-
teams are required at the lowest tactical levels to deal   evant in the asymmetric environment. The US Army
                                                           needs coping mechanisms as a dominant character-
                                                           istic of the operational level of war in asymmetric
       During regional conflicts, asymmetric               environments.
  tactics may be applied out of area as part of a             A JTF’s mission may be dominated by long pe-
    larger strategy or as the sole elements of a           riods of maintaining peace while responding to
long-term strategic offensive. Protecting the joint        sporadic flare-ups. Or, responding to asymmet-
   deployment system continues to be a strategic           ric incidents may be part of larger, conventional op-
  imperative but cannot be separated from more             erations. In either case, insufficient resources will
     general force protection. Learning at this            be available to prevent all potential asymmetric at-
 level focuses on developing a strategic response          tacks. They must be detected and dealt with as they
         that subordinates means to ends.                  emerge. Preparation means emplacing coping
                                                           mechanisms in advance.
                                                              Urban emergency services, including police, para-
with this asymmetric environment.9 However, small          medics and fire fighters, offer a useful model for the
teams of combat, combat support and combat ser-            operational level of war in asymmetric environ-
vice support elements are not found in garrison or         ments. With insufficient resources to prevent all
in doctrine. Units that experiment with new combi-         accidents, crimes and fires, city managers cannot
nations (methods of employing a mix of arms) are           plan to be in the right place at the right time in ad-
more likely to adapt to an evolving enemy than units       vance, but they can implement mechanisms in ad-
that train to design standards against a doctrinal op-     vance to monitor and respond with the critical re-
ponent. The problem then becomes learning, train-          sources necessary. These are the bases of coping
ing and adapting combined arms warfare across              mechanisms.
branches and services at the lowest tactical echelons.        Coping mechanisms at the operational level of
   There are a host of impediments to exploring new        war are not new. One was implemented after the in-
combinations at the tactical echelons. In garrison,        cident in Mogadishu on 3 and 4 October. That small,
homogeneous units, such as artillery battalions and        independent units in the city would come under at-
fighter squadrons, achieve efficiency. On the other        tack could be known in advance; when and which
hand, combined arms teams achieve effectiveness.           ones could not. A monitoring network and quick-
Training opportunities are optimized for a specific        response force was established to cope with what
type of force and range of operations. Peacetime           could be anticipated but not prevented. Air mobil-
efficiency militates against combined arms learning        ity as employed in Vietnam could be considered as
opportunities.                                             an operational-level coping mechanism. US forces
   The problem extends well into the hierarchy. Di-        could neither prevent enemy troop concentrations
vision tables of organization and equipment, like          nor predict and plan for them. They could, however,
their battalions’, are designed and optimized for a        detect them as they emerged and respond rapidly.
specific range of operations. Training opportunities       Close air support, when tightly integrated with dy-
like the Battle Command Training Program are de-           namic ground operations, can also be seen as a cop-
signed accordingly. The range of possible combined         ing mechanism.
arms operations in an armored division is limited.            Law enforcement may also offer instructive in-
The same is true of light infantry, airborne or air        sights for intelligence. Rather than conventional-
assault divisions. The somewhat defunct infantry           force templates, mug shots, family trees, and tele-
division may offer the widest range of combinations        phone and bank records may be appropriate
to explore. At all levels the force must be designed       intelligence products. Intelligence staffs will learn
for competence across a broad range of missions but        to provide different products, and operators will
optimized for none.                                        learn to ask for them.
                                                              Learning will certainly continue to occur in the
LearningattheOperationalLevel                              unforgiving laboratory of ongoing operations. JTFs
  Some interpretations of the operational level fo-        created for real operations offer opportunities to ex-
cus on picking the point in space and time for the         periment with a wide-ranging combinations of cop-

42                                                                          July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
David J. Reimer Sr. Emergency Services Photography

                                                                                                                                             Fire fighters practice
                                                                                                                                             procedures during
                                                                                                                                             a hazardous materials
                                                                                                                                             exercise in Berks
                                                                                                                                             County, Pennsylvania.

                                                          Urban emergency services, including police, paramedics and fire fighters, offer a useful
                                                      model for the operational level of war in asymmetric environments. With insufficient resources to
                                                     prevent all accidents, crimes and fires, city managers cannot plan to be in the right place at the right
                                                       time in advance, but they can implement mechanisms in advance to monitor and respond with
                                                                  the critical resources necessary. These are the bases of coping mechanisms.

                                                     ing mechanisms. JTFs are not part of standard mili-     Learning at this level focuses on developing a stra-
                                                     tary organizations in garrison. Just the opposite is    tegic response that subordinates means to ends.
                                                     true; garrison forces are pure and rarely join a het-      In the event of a crisis, a JTF commander will be
                                                     erogeneous force. Without standing JTFs, garri-         appointed and assigned a JOA within a unified
                                                     son and learning operational readiness will be weak.    command’s area of responsibility (AOR). There will
                                                        Adaptive command is a daunting task for a good       be significant opportunities for asymmetric actors
                                                     team and perhaps impossible for a last-minute “pick-    to attack outside the JOA and even outside the AOR.
                                                     up team.” Yet, we plan to form our command team         For example, another Middle East scenario might
                                                     at the last minute. The newly appointed commander       involve bombers and strategic airlift operating out
                                                     must build a team at the same time the team is          of Rota, Spain. An asymmetric actor might be will-
                                                     building a response to an emerging crisis. The ad       ing and able to disrupt operations there or to raise
                                                     hoc JTF headquarters will defy adaptive command,        Spain’s cost of providing basing. The mere poten-
                                                     or any type of command, until the command team          tial for asymmetric attack caused significant prob-
                                                     is built. The learning curve will be slow and costly.   lems to planners of Operation Eldorado Canyon
                                                     US forces and objectives will be vulnerable at the      when Spain and France denied overflight rights to
                                                     operational level of war until the joint command        US FB-111s flying from Great Britain to Libya.
                                                     team forms.10                                              Asymmetric attacks can be less direct than physi-
                                                                                                             cally destroying military facilities. They may include
                                                     LearningattheStrategicLevel                             inciting locals to riot or strike. Throughput capac-
                                                        The US military is accustomed to fighting abroad.    ity would be seriously degraded if forklift operators,
                                                     This reality presents an enduring strategic vulner-     railroad engineers and stevedores did not report for
                                                     ability for an asymmetric actor to exploit. Dur-        work. Attacks on family housing would have great
                                                     ing regional conflicts, asymmetric tactics may be       strategic effect. How can the United States learn
                                                     applied out of area as part of a larger strategy or     to anticipate, prevent and cope with out-of-area
                                                     as the sole elements of a long-term strategic offen-    attacks?
                                                     sive. Protecting the joint deployment system con-          A learning event could be designed to focus at-
                                                     tinues to be a strategic imperative but cannot be       tention on the joint deployment system, including
                                                     separated from more general force protection.           ports of embarkation, lines of communication, ports

                                                     MILITARY REVIEW   l   July-August 2001                                                                     43
of debarkation and forward operating bases. A learn-                                    metric attack outside the JOA must be evaluated in
ing event should explore as many potential asym-                                        terms of strategic priorities and the JTF com-
metric attacks as possible and determine how to                                         mander’s theater priorities.
cope with the most dangerous and most likely. At                                           The balance has shifted between what could be
one extreme, resources can be statically preallocated                                   known and planned for in advance and what could
to protect the force against all potential threats. Such                                not—between what was fixed and what was vari-
a prevention strategy is exhausting and cannot be                                       able. Increasingly, being prepared is less a product
sustained. A strategy that subordinates means to                                        of deliberate planning, training execution to doctri-
ends would dynamically allocate resources to the                                        nal standards and long-term combat development
force element most critical to mission accomplish-                                      processes and more a product of warfighting orga-
ment. Additional resources would be allocated to                                        nizations that are trained in crisis-action planning
monitor threat conditions and to respond accordingly.                                   and adaptive command. Adaptive command, as de-
   Coping mechanisms—resources organized to                                             fined here, is becoming more common. Coping
monitor and respond—underwrite this second strat-                                       mechanisms can be found in military history but
egy. If intelligence detects a rising threat condition                                  may become central doctrinal concepts in asymmet-
and operations can mount a timely response, then                                        ric environments.
coping mechanisms can be effective in a prevention                                         Centering learning in the user chain of command
strategy. If this real-time, stimulus-response cycle                                    will produce organizations that can more readily
cannot be built, then coping mechanisms should be                                       adapt and more effectively lead long-term com-
designed to deal with the aftereffects. The real-time                                   bat development rather than be its belated recipient.
interaction of intelligence and operations is critical                                  Combat developers must more actively convert les-
and should be a focal point for both learning and                                       sons learned in operational commands to doctrine,
training.                                                                               organization and training. Combat developers must
   Examples of coping mechanisms used to respond                                        produce a more diverse playbook of combined arms
to out-of-area attacks in the Mediterranean region                                      at the lowest tactical levels and coping mechanisms
during a Middle East scenario include an amphibi-                                       at higher-level commands. But, combat develop-
ous ready group with a Marine expeditionary unit,                                       ment is conducted principally by services and
a special operations task force, an air assault-based                                   branches within them. When competing for acqui-
task force, a chemical-biological incident response                                     sition funds, branches dominate combined arms or-
force or a fleet antiterrorist security team supported                                  ganizations, and services dominate joint organiza-
by closely linked intelligence.                                                         tions. Only leadership, another precious resource,
   Neither the JTF commander nor the CINC will                                          can overcome the inevitable imbalance accompany-
be positioned to deal with all out-of-area attacks, but                                 ing the flow of money. More important, to over-
the total system must anticipate and prepare for                                        come limitations that standard patterns of behavior
them, and the JTF commander must be prepared to                                         often place on government action, adaptation must
cope with the effects. The risk of a potential asym-                                    become a hallmark of US military behavior.

    1. Graham T. Allison, “Conceptual Models and the Cuban Missile Crisis,” Ameri-      world time in every hour of event time. An event conducted in skip time might repre-
can Political Science Review, September 1969, 689–718.                                  sent decisionmaking in slower than real-world time to allow greater deliberations, ad-
    2. Deliberate planning is distinct from the crisis-action planning that naval ex-   journ for the evening and resume the next morning as if weeks or months had passed.
peditionary forces, XVIII Airborne Corps and special operations forces, among               7. This pedagogical technique is commonly referred to as “heuristically guided
others, commonly practice.                                                              investigation,” a process driven by seeking answers to questions rather than by
    3. This description characterizes the exercises conducted by the European           testing hypotheses. For a more thorough discussion of military experimentation,
Command’s Army and Air Force components at the Warrior Preparation Center;              see D. Robert Worley, Defining Military Experiments, IDA D-2412 (Alexandria, VA:
by the Army’s Battle Command Training Program; and more recently, by the Joint          IDA, February 1999).
Forces Command in its UNIFIED ENDEAVOR series of exercises.                                 8. General Montgomery C. Meigs, “Operational Art in the New Century,” Pa-
    4. For a more thorough discussion of post-Cold War trends and the implica-          rameters (Carlisle, PA: USAWC, Spring 2001), 12.
tions for higher-echelon training, see D. Robert Worley, Michael H. Vernon and              9. D. Robert Worley, Alec Wahlman and Dennis J. Gleeson Jr., Military Op-
Robert E. Downes, Time and Command Operations: The Strategic Role of the                erations in Urban Terrain: A Survey of Journal Articles, IDA D-2521 (Alexandria,
Unified Commands and the Implications for Training and Simulations, IDA-3222            VA: IDA, October 2000).
(Alexandria, Va: Institute for Defense Analyses [IDA], October 1996).                     10. Charles E. Heller and William A. Stofft, America’s First Battles, 1776–
    5. Thomas J. Czerwinski, “Command and Control at the Crossroads,” Para-             1965 (Lawrence, KS: University of Kansas Press, 1986); D. Robert Worley,
meters (Carlisle, PA: US Army War College [USAWC], Autumn 1996), 121–32.                “Joint Task Forces: Options to Train, Organize and Equip,” National Security
    6. An event conducted in fast time would represent more than one hour of real-      Studies Quarterly, Winter 1999, 31–48.

                             D. Robert Worley is a senior research fellow at the Potomac Institute for Policy Stud-
                          ies, Arlington, Virginia. He received a Ph.D. from the University of California, Los Ange-
                          les (UCLA); an M.S.E.E from the University of Southern California; an A.B. from the
                          University of California, Berkeley; and master’s degrees from Johns Hopkins University
                          and Georgetown. He has served on the UCLA faculty and is now a fellow at the Johns
                          Hopkins University Washington Center for the Study of American Government and an
                          adjunct faculty member of George Washington University’s Elliot School of International
                          Affairs. He has worked for the Institute for Defense Analyses, the RAND Corporation and
                          Hughes Aircraft Company. He served in Vietnam as an enlisted Marine.

44                                                                                                                  July-August 2001          l   MILITARY REVIEW
               After tracing the history of Army decisionmaking doctrine, the author
             proposes wide-ranging examination of our procedures, organizations and
             culture. In the end, the military decisionmaking process emerges as a
             valuable tool for coordinating intuition with analysis, task with purpose,
             plans with operations, and the present with the future.

R     UDIMENTARY military staff organization
       and procedures have developed since 2000
B.C., beginning probably with the armies of early
                                                       movements became the business of army staffs as
                                                       keys to decisive victory. In von Moltke’s time, the
                                                       Germans proved that an army that could plan de-
Egypt. But, according to James D. Hittle, a histo-     tailed requirements, orchestrate capabilities rapidly
rian of the military staff, the modern staff system    and implement them precisely would win large-scale
did not emerge until late in the 19th century, even    wars of national mobilization.
later for the US Army. Hittle postulates that mod-        The Generalstab’s power eventually usurped ci-
ern staff systems have certain features:               vilian policy because the exhaustive, inflexible mili-
   l A regular education system for training staff     tary decisionmaking process (MDMP) and planning
officers.                                              actually drove political decisions. The best example
   l Delegation of authority from the commander.       of this was at the beginning of World War I when
   l Supervised execution of orders issued by or       Germany executed the Schlieffen plan. Named for
through the staff.                                     Alfred von Schlieffen, head of the Generalstab from
   l A set method of procedure by which each part      1892 to 1906, the Schlieffen plan called for swift
performs specific duties.1                             victory against France through a flanking attack
   Hittle’s proposed characteristics would certainly   across neutral Belgium. The greatest flaw in the
describe the successful formation of the Prussian      plan was the Generalstab’s assumption that vic-
Generalstab (general staff) under General Helmuth      tory would come in six weeks, thereby allowing
von Moltke in the latter 19th century. The General-    Germany to respond to the expected sluggish Rus-
stab was largely responsible for orchestrating         sian mobilization on a potential eastern front.2
Germany’s rapid defeat of France in 1870. During       The Schlieffen plan case shows that excellence in
the industrial age, military theory began viewing      planning alone will not overcome a flawed military
armies as machines of the nation-state. Detailed al-   strategy or concept of operations; operations “may
gorithms of mobilization, rail schedules and troop     fail not only by being unsuccessfully implemented,

MILITARY REVIEW   l   July-August 2001                                                                    45
                                                          1940 US Army Field Manual (FM) 101-5, Staff Of-
       Commander’s intent, along with                     ficers’ Field Manual: The Staff and Combat Orders,
initial guidance and concept of operations,               increased the scope and depth of staff doctrine be-
 introduced innovation and initiative to the              yond the 1932 version.
  traditional, analytically oriented MDMP.                   A new method of using draft staff officers’ doc-
Thus, for the first time, this edition emphasized         trine emerged after World War II. The US Army Com-
synthesis (integrating elements into a cohesive           mand and General Staff College (CGSC) published
  whole) in the MDMP as a complementary                   draft staff officers’ doctrine to update frequently
 mental attribute to the traditional analysis             changing terms and procedures. The 1949 CGSC
    (successively decomposing into parts).                draft, for example, emphasized the planning process
                                                          rather than the orders format. Later CGSC versions
                                                          were published as numbered reference books and
but also by being successfully implemented then           student texts under various titles and formats.7
proven inadequate.”3                                         The July 1950 FM 101-5, Staff Officers’ Field
   The US form of government makes forming a              Manual: Staff Organization and Procedures, the
Generalstab-like military staff unlikely, even dis-       next officially published staff doctrine, added the ad-
tasteful. Civil authority over the military is vested     ministrative commander’s estimate, focusing on
in the US Constitution, making the military pur-          analysis for supporting an operation.8 This manual
posely subservient to civilian decisionmakers and         was a logical evolution of the 1949 CGSC draft
the Constitution itself. Nevertheless, modern nations     FM 101-5.
have adopted ideas from the German staff model.              The November 1954 FM 101-5 made the com-
                                                          mander’s estimate a part of an overall estimate of
HistoryofModernUSArmy                                     the situation and added specific staff estimates for
StaffOfficers’Doctrine                                    personnel, intelligence, operations, logistics, civil af-
   As the Schlieffen plan was being developed and         fairs, military government and deception. Interest-
the world drew closer to World War I, the US Army         ingly, the deception estimate fell out as a stand-alone
lacked published staff doctrine. The 1910 publica-        estimate in the next version and has not reappeared
tion, Regulations for Field Maneuvers, did not in-        in staff doctrine. The manual adopted the basic five-
clude a description of staff processes; a 1914 field      step analysis associated with the commander’s es-
service regulation (FSR) mentioned the need for a         timate process and added conclusions or recommen-
commander and staff estimating process but did not        dations to paragraph five to supplement the decision
describe one.4                                            step. This version also added atomic weapons and
   Following World War I, the 1924 version of the         chemical, biological and radiological effects as fac-
FSR included doctrinal formatted orders with re-          tors of analysis.9
quired annexes, maps and tables. Still, the FSR              In June 1968 more detailed procedures were pub-
stated only that leaders should “first make an esti-      lished while preserving the basic doctrinal concepts.
mate of the situation, culminating in a decision upon     Wiring diagrams and process flowcharts depicted
a definite plan of action.”5 No procedural steps were     multiple players with plans, orders and estimate pro-
provided to explain this process.                         cesses occurring simultaneously. Estimate proce-
   In 1932 the Staff Officers’ Field Manual compiled      dures were presented as military problem-solving
“principles, information and data to be used as a         techniques and further shown to be Standardization
guide for the operation of staffs of all units and ter-   Agreement (STANAG) 2118; hence, US Army doc-
ritorial commands, in peace and war, rather than a        trine for staff planning took on an allied flavor for
set of rules and regulations to be rigidly and blindly    the first time. Additionally, for the first time, pro-
followed.”6 The manual provided a comprehensive           cedures differentiated between the operation order
command and staff doctrine on which modern pro-           (OPORD) and operation plan (OPLAN). Also note-
cedures are based. Orders formats were more de-           worthy was the introduction of planning assump-
tailed than in the 1924 FSR, and explanations of          tions to “fill the gaps in knowledge of what condi-
staff functions and the commander’s estimate were         tions probably will be.”10
more complete.                                               While the July 1972 FM 101-5 contained few
   In 1940 the Army began expanding to prepare for        substantive changes from the 1968 version, it intro-
World War II, growing to more than eight million          duced the administrative staff study to separate the
soldiers by the end of the war. The scale and com-        MDMP for administration from combat opera-
plexity of military decisionmaking and planning           tions.11 Replacing the administrative commander’s
made staff work proportionately more intricate; thus,     estimate, the staff study outlined six steps to admin-
staff doctrine expanded with the Army. The August         istrative problem solving: problem, assumptions,

46                                                                          July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
                                                                                              German stormtroopers in France, circa
                                                                                              1916. The failed Schlieffen plan aimed for
                                                                                              a swift victory against France through a
                                                                                              flanking attack across neutral Belgium.
                                                                                              A contemporary observer stated that
                                                                                              when the operation broke down, shell
                                                                                              holes became trenches and the trenches
                                                                                              eventually became an elaborate defen-
                                                                                              sive system several miles deep.
Imperial War Museum

                          The Schlieffen plan case shows that excellence in planning alone will not overcome a flawed
                      military strategy or concept of operations; operations “may fail not only by being unsuccessfully
                               implemented, but also by being successfully implemented then proven inadequate.”

                      facts, discussion, conclusions and action recom-            Finally, the 1984 edition added a special appen-
                      mended.12 It also introduced a model showing the         dix, “Emerging Staff Techniques and Procedures,”
                      sequence of commander and staff actions that more        which provided a “forum for brief discussion of
                      clearly developed the idea of simultaneous and in-       Armywide initiatives in staff techniques and proce-
                      teractive staff and commander’s MDMP actions.            dures developed to enhance the effectiveness of staff
                      The model flowchart separated nine staff and             operations in the face of emerging doctrine and rap-
                      commander’s actions. Actions that involved mak-          idly changing technology.”14 This was an official
                      ing synthesized decisions were on the commander’s        invitation to open discussion and dialogue, espe-
                      side of the chart; actions requiring detailed analysis   cially about up-and-coming information technolo-
                      were primarily on the staff’s.13                         gies such as the maneuver control system, micro-
                         The 1984 version, retitled Staff Organization and     processor systems, teleconferencing, facsimiles and
                      Operations, implemented no fewer than eight              decision graphics.
                      STANAGs, indicating more purposeful NATO                    After many CGSC student text drafts, FM 101-5
                      interoperability. For the first time, Army staff doc-    was again updated and published in 1997. It devoted
                      trine discussed the joint planning process and in-       a chapter to staff officer characteristics, reflecting
                      cluded a more comprehensive discussion of special-       contemporary management influences; it explained
                      ized staff roles and organization. MDMP changes          the most intricate procedural aspects of MDMP with
                      included adding rehearsals as a new doctrinal step       a complex, 38-step procedure; it contained more
                      and expanding the MDMP flowchart to show feed-           detailed examples for completing plans, orders and
                      back to the staff estimate, mission analysis and         annexes; it had a separate appendix on information
                      commander’s estimate. The MDMP doctrine now              management; it introduced the concept of the
                      recognized that while supervising decision execu-        commander’s critical information requirements; and
                      tion, emergent factors influence changes in mission      it detailed the concepts, duties and responsibilities
                      and commander’s concept—a decision that remains          of liaison officers based on lessons learned from
                      a continuous and interactive process within the          coalition operations in the Gulf War. Also notewor-
                      MDMP.                                                    thy was the absence of any link to STANAGs.15

                      MILITARY REVIEW   l   July-August 2001                                                                         47
   The 1997 edition introduced commander’s intent        formation for making that decision is inadequate or
in Army staff doctrine, a concept that had been ex-      unavailable. Conversely, analysis is conscious rea-
perimented with at length at CGSC and in Army            soning based on decomposition and manipulation of
operations and training. Commander’s intent, along       a situation. It is a methodical process that seeks
                                                         knowledge in complex environments and involves
                                                         a step-by-step, systematic procedure.16 Decision-
         Modes generally reflect patterns                makers display sound judgment—a blend of intu-
of military planning and when coupled with the           ition and analysis—when they chose well among
   types of planning (detailed, functional and           options despite uncertainty and ambiguity.17
conceptual) give a better picture of the full scope         Good decisionmakers tend to use heuristics or
of planning required. The old adage “plan early          speculative general rules that aid in problem solv-
and plan twice” is based on failure to recognize         ing by directing the search or decreasing the amount
    proper modes of planning required—                   of information searched.18 While Army profession-
committing too early rather than formulating             als are likely to develop similar heuristics, educa-
   contingencies or orienting on the threat              tion, experience, intelligence and personality will
                or opportunity.                          affect differences among decisionmakers.19 Military
                                                         educational institutions use historical analogies and
                                                         case studies to foster heuristic decisionmaking, for-
with initial guidance and concept of operations, in-     mulate creative stratagems and develop critical
troduced innovation and initiative to the traditional,   thinking skills.20
analytically oriented MDMP. Thus, for the first             Visualization, a related concept to heuristics,
time, this edition emphasized synthesis (integrating     is a decisionmaker’s ability to picture what lies
elements into a cohesive whole) in the MDMP as a         ahead. Good decisionmakers, like good chess
complementary mental attribute to the traditional        players, think downboard to envision second- and
analysis (successively decomposing into parts).          third-order effects of decisions and develop
                                                         branches and sequels to current or planned opera-
ModernMDMP’sMultipleDimensions                           tions. Often specialized staffs—think tanks or fu-
   Modern MDMP is a multidimensional undertak-           tures groups—assist decisionmakers in the visu-
ing with the decisionmaker, environment, organiza-       alization process.21
tion (vertical and horizontal), planning, learning and      Army decisionmakers rely on learned values that
procedures its major aspects. Many decisionmaking        affect decisions and planning:
models (most are procedural) have been developed            l Truth (through analysis — the scientific
to assist decisionmakers in other than military or-      method).
ganizations. However, researchers studying decision-        l Power (in being part of a team that creates the
making in civilian organizations have found that         national element of power).
decisions appear to be somewhat arbitrary and not           l Goodness and virtue (high ethical and moral
necessarily based on the best possible course of         standards).
action. Hence, one purpose of the Army’s doc-               l Aesthetics (appreciation for the art of decision-
trinal MDMP is to ensure that defining a problem         making, the satisfaction and beauty of formulating
and choosing the best course of action is not ran-
domly matching variables but a deliberate action.
   The decisionmaker is the central MDMP element.
Effective military decisionmakers do not necessar-
ily occupy formal leadership positions or have se-
nior rank. Future military operations in a dispersed
and noncontiguous battle space will likely distrib-
ute authority and decisionmaking. Soldiers operat-
ing remote sensing devices, uninhabited vehicles or
precision-guided munitions, for example, may op-
erate autonomously and make critical decisions af-
fecting the outcome of military operations.
   Good decisionmakers can employ both intuitive
and analytic skills. Intuition is an unconscious ap-
preciation of patterns of operations—a synthesis
process. It reflects understanding that fosters the
ability to achieve workable solutions even when in-

48                                                                        July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
                                       Members of Lockheed’s Advanced Development Projects
                                       Division, or “Skunk Works,” prepare the first F-117 stealth
                                       aircraft for an engine test, spring 1981. This team carried
                                       the project from concept to design to prototype.

Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company

                                                 Visualization, a related concept to heuristics, is a decisionmaker’s ability
                                      to picture what lies ahead. Good decisionmakers, like good chess players, think downboard to
                                        envision second- and third-order effects of decisions and develop branches and sequels to
                                       current or planned operations. Often specialized staffs—think tanks or futures groups—
                                                             assist decisionmakers in the visualization process.

                                 creative solutions to complex problems).22                      and future—produce variances in knowledge and
                                    The environment. MDMP addresses three en-                    understanding of what has happened, what is hap-
                                 vironmental settings—the past, present and future.              pening and what will happen.
                                 Future environments exist under varying conditions                 Vertical aspects of MDMP. Decisionmakers
                                 of certainty, so decisions have varying degrees of              must understand how decisions concerning tactics,
                                 flexibility and risk. Flexibility flows from available          operations, strategies or policy nest in higher-level
                                 choices—how much force should remain in reserve                 organizations. The same MDMP principle applies
                                 and where; how many concept plans for branches                  to ensuring that subordinates understand the com-
                                 and sequels should be developed; what kind of ma-               mander’s intent. A recent MDMP study demon-
                                 neuver (attack or defend) should be employed. Risk              strated that successful commanders best impart their
                                 is the residual variance of rational choice or the              intent through a healthy command climate, telling
                                 decision’s stability —whether underlying assump-                subordinates what and not how (mission-type or-
                                 tions about the environment or the effects of the de-           ders), explaining how they arrived at their decision
                                 cision on the environment hold true. Risk may be                (their thinking process), good feedback mecha-
                                 accepted, for example, by some measure of avail-                nisms (subordinate access to the superior’s MDMP)
                                 able force readiness or the enemy’s known readi-                and being familiar with their subordinates (a mea-
                                 ness. Less flexibility (stronger commitment to a                sure of trust).23
                                 single choice) and less risk (more stability) are char-            Status is another aspect of vertical organizational
                                 acteristics of decisions made with certainty, while             influence on MDMP. Especially under conditions
                                 the opposites may be true under conditions of                   of stress, those with less military rank or on a lower
                                 greater uncertainty. The availability and quality of            organizational level tend to defer to others of higher
                                 information about the environment—past, present                 rank and organizational level. The result may be
                                                                                                 overcentralized decisionmaking.24
                                                                                                    Horizontal (group) aspects of MDMP. Group
                                                                                                 military decisionmaking is a corollary to conflict
                                                                                                 management in various organizations. Conflict is
                                                                                                 eliminated, often incrementally, through consensus
                                                                                                 and through loosely coupled decisionmaking

                                 MILITARY REVIEW       l   July-August 2001                                                                         49
systems when efforts to seek consensus fail.25 In op-     planning (creating and maintaining military capabili-
erations involving joint and combined military or-        ties) and operation planning (what the Army would
ganizations or other agencies and nongovernment           associate with the MDMP type of planning). MCDP
organizations, consensus building and a more              5 describes a planning continuum from:
loosely coupled MDMP have proven useful.                     l Detailed planning (the lowest level; focuses on
  Loosely coupled processes try to make sense of          “how-to” instructions for control measures and
seemingly random systems using decentralization,          movement tables, for example).
                                                             l Functional planning (the medium level; sup-
                                                          ports plans with discrete functional activities such
         One danger in MDMP is being                      as logistics, security and intelligence).
   overanalytical, creating a tendency toward                l Conceptual planning (the highest level; opera-
premature closure in the process of formulating           tional concepts, commander’s intent, goals and ob-
   stratagems. Decisionmakers may be more                 jectives).31
comfortable or competent conducting MDMP’s                   The levels are interactive; concepts will drive
 procedural aspects. They may give inadequate             functional and detailed planning, and details will
    attention to the less-structured, but more            influence functional and conceptual planning. This
  important, step of generating stratagems                hierarchy may be processed at any level of organi-
                in the first place.                       zation or war. MCDP 5 describes planning modes
                                                          as another dimension of planning and also along a
                                                          continuum of risk and time:
                                                             l Commitment planning (resources are physi-
delegation, vague language, vague expectations, and       cally prepared under conditions of greater certainty
coaching and educating through talk and action.26         with a shorter time horizon).
Loosely coupled operations permit greater freedom            l Contingency planning (resources are pro-
of action and variation in execution—allowing par-        grammed for several projected circumstances—but
ticipants broader latitude without adversely affect-      not physically committed—under conditions of mod-
ing the operation.                                        erate uncertainty with an increased time horizon).
   Planning aspects of MDMP. In large Army or-               l Orientation planning (resources are in rough
ganizations, such as corps and divisions, near-term       concept—continually assessing and designing pre-
decisions (current operations) are always nested in       liminary plans allows response to a broad variety
long-term decisions (plans). To plan is to design a
desired future (ends) and orchestrate effective ways      of circumstances over longer periods).32
and means of bringing it about. A plan is anticipa-          Modes generally reflect patterns of military plan-
tory decisionmaking that involves a set of interde-       ning and when coupled with the types of planning
pendent decisions. The process is continuous and          (detailed, functional and conceptual) give a better
has no conclusion or end point. What separates stra-      picture of the full scope of planning required. The
tegic planning from operational and tactical plan-        old adage “plan early and plan twice” is based on
ning is largely the difficulty of reversing its effects   failure to recognize proper modes of planning re-
during execution.27                                       quired—committing too early rather than formulat-
   Military planning shifts the decisionmaking load       ing contingencies or orienting on the threat or op-
to earlier periods of relative inactivity.28 This was     portunity. Another planning adage, “the truth
certainly true with the XVIII Airborne Corps dur-         changes,” applies as well. Over time interpretations
ing Operation Desert Shield where planners focused        of the situation change. While each change may be
MDMP on incremental defensive planning during             small and immediate, the cumulative drift can lead
the force buildup phase. That plan changed as more        to transformation large enough that few will recog-
military capability deployed into the maturing the-       nize history’s relationship to the current situation.
ater. In addition, through implementing a viable          Without recognizing patterns, projecting the future
defense, ample time was assured to plan extensively       situation is difficult if not impossible.
for the XVIII Airborne Corps’ ground offensive               Learning aspects of MDMP. C.S. Forester’s his-
against Iraq.29                                           torical novel, The General, portrays World War I
   US Marine Corps Doctrinal Publication 5 (MCDP 5),      British leaders as simple- and single-minded. In
Planning, provides an extensive and valuable dis-         what today’s US Army would call an after-action
cussion of the nature of planning, including plan-        review (AAR), Forester depicts a British army corps
ning theory and what makes planning effective. It         commander and his division commanders discuss-
defines planning as “the art and science of envision-     ing the battle of Loos, a failed allied offensive.
ing a desired future and laying out effective ways           The September 1915 offensive was based on an
to bring it about, influencing events before they oc-     allied delusion that “artillery could blast a hole
cur.”30 Categories of Marine planning include force       through the opposing wall for infantry and thereby

50                                                                         July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
assure success.”33 British killed in action totaled        formulation is emerging in MDMP—aspects that
60,000 and the breakthrough failed. Forester de-           involve intuition as well as analysis. The challenge
scribes the World War I AAR: “In some ways it was          to changing staff organization and operations is
like the debate of a group of savages as to how to         clearly cultural. A decisionmaking system that
extract a screw from a piece of wood. Accustomed           evolves over decades as primarily analytic devel-
only to nails, they had made one effort to pull out        ops a code for information about the situation. Such
the screw by main force, and now that it had failed        a code partitions all possible estimates of the situa-
they were devising methods of applying more force          tion into a relatively small number of classes of es-
still, of obtaining more efficient pincers, of using       timates. Organizational learning relies on changing
levers and fulcrum so that more men could bring            that partitioning process or at least modifying it to
their strength to bear. They could hardly be blamed        apply to the whole of the new situation.37
for not guessing that by rotating the screw it would          The Army Battle Command Training Program was
come out after the exertion of far less effort; it would   designed to exercise division and corps command-
be so different that they would laugh at the man who       ers and staff in the art and science of staff orga-
suggested it.”34                                           nization and operations. More attention by observers/
   Even in a learning organization that conducts           controllers will be placed on the art of decision-
AARs and harvests lessons and observations, ap-            making (creative and intuitive faculties) than the
proaches can be deadly wrong if they are based on          science of control (analytic).38 Additionally, a com-
faulty MDMP devoid of creative thinking. Based on          prehensive study of tactical commanders at the Na-
such reasoning, British generals later planned an          tional Training Center, Fort Irwin, California, re-
even larger fiasco—the Somme offensive in sum-             vealed that the most successful leaders demonstrate
mer 1916—where again more than 60,000 British              not just analytic skills but the capacity to synthesize
soldiers perished. Caught in “paralysis through            using visualization, creativity, initiative and flexibil-
analysis” they decided through a commander and             ity.39 Making decisions under varying conditions of
staff estimate process that they could attain victory      uncertainty in the full spectrum of Army operations
by merely improving on the same concept of op-             will require more and more intuitive skills.40
erations from the previous offensive. This sort of            Stratagems are formulated not through a linear
behavior has been called a “competency trap,”              decision process but through a nonlinear MDMP.
which “arises in various forms in many adaptive            Nonlinear MDMP is continuous, accounts for pro-
systems and reflects the ways in which improving           cessed feedback (learning) and emergent situational
capabilities with one rule, technology, strategy or        factors (such as mission, enemy, terrain, troops,
practice interferes with changing that rule, technol-      time, civilians) and adjusts stratagems accordingly;
ogy, strategy or practice to another that is potentially   hence, MDMP with adaptive learning results. The
superior (but with which the decisionmaker has little      figure below depicts a nontraditional model of
current competence).”35                                    MDMP with large and small arrows indicating a
   British Field Marshal William Slim’s leadership         nonlinear performance outcome.
in Burma during World War II was
the antithesis of the competency
trap. Learning from his own orga-
nizational weaknesses and enemy
strengths over more than two years,
he turned defeat into victory: “In
Burma we fought on a lower scale
of transport, supplies, equipment,
supporting arms and amenities than
was accepted in any other British
theatre. Yet, largely because of this
lack of material resources, we
learned to use those we had in fresh
ways to achieve more than what
would have been possible had we
clung to conventional methods. We
. . . in strange conditions evolved
our own technique of war, not so
much material, as human.”36
   Recent emphasis on conceptual

MILITARY REVIEW    l   July-August 2001                                                                          51
  One danger in MDMP is being overanalytical,            risk in these areas fosters learning and development
creating a tendency toward premature closure in the      among Army decisionmakers.
process of formulating stratagems. Decisionmakers
may be more comfortable or competent conducting          WhatLiesAhead
MDMP’s procedural aspects. They may give inad-              Army organizations must achieve “decision su-
equate attention to the less-structured, but more im-    periority”—good decisions made faster than an op-
portant, step of generating stratagems in the first      ponent can react or, in a noncombat situation, at a
                                                         tempo that allows the joint force commander to
                                                         shape the situation or react quickly to changes and
       Army doctrinal MDMP must merge                    accomplish the mission.46 In future MDMP, the goal
with joint decisionmaking processes. The corps           is to turn estimates of the situation into situational
   commander and staff serving as a joint task           understanding—past, present and, insofar as pos-
 force headquarters will have little or no time to       sible, future. Staff organization and operations will
change from Army MDMP and doctrinal orders               be tailored to enable “enactment planning,” modi-
  to the joint operation planning and execution          fying or creating new stratagems to control the fu-
system that produces joint force orders. Until the       ture situation while giving the opponent little or no
procedures match, Army theater-level and corps           choice. Ultimately, friendly MDMP limits the effec-
 commanders and staff must translate MDMP                tiveness of the decisionmaking process.
   so it becomes seamless with joint processes.             To do so, Army doctrinal MDMP must merge
                                                         with joint decisionmaking processes. The corps
                                                         commander and staff serving as a joint task force
place.41 Stratagems are generated through divergent      headquarters will have little or no time to change
thinking, which involves “expanding the picture of       from Army MDMP and doctrinal orders to the joint
the problem.”42 Convergent thinking involves nar-        operation planning and execution system that pro-
rowing a problem down to a smaller, more manage-         duces joint force orders. Until the procedures match,
able size and casting out alternatives. Commanders       Army theater-level and corps commanders and staff
must avoid letting MDMP’s procedures cause con-          must translate MDMP so it becomes seamless with
vergent thinking too early.43 Premature closure pre-     joint processes.
vents learning from other possible alternatives. It         Most studies of Army commanders and staffs
may be better to continue to orient on the problem       have focused on potential MDMP improvements to
than to commit to a solution too early.                  shorten decision times and conduct more detailed
   Another pitfall similar to premature closure is       analyses.47 Future study must include more empha-
self-imposed constraint. Preventing or removing          sis on how to:
unnecessary constraints permits creativity and learn-       l Enhance decisionmakers’ intuition through
ing. The MDMP environment contains controllable          Army training, education, and current and planned
variables, such as friendly forces, and uncontrollable   operations.
variables such as weather, terrain and enemy attack.        l Transform Army culture from placing value on
The ideal situation does not constrain how the           analytic (procedural) aspects of MDMP to give
decisionmaker controls the controllable variables        equal weight to its more multidimensional aspects.
and reduces or removes the effectiveness of the un-         l Revise MDMP to ensure it is seamless with
controllable variables.44 Mission statements, con-       joint decision processes.
cepts of operation, commander’s intent statements,          l Blend Army Staff organization and operations
tasks to subordinate units and similar directives must   with Joint Staff organization and operations; allied,
be carefully formulated to avoid self-imposed con-       coalition or combined staff organization and opera-
straints.                                                tions; the interagency process; and nongovernment
   Army education, mentorship and organizational         organizations.
experience through training and operations should           l Increase flexibility and speed in MDMP be-
synthesize what has already been learned and ex-         cause Army forces will deploy when there is only
tract a holistic view from it so decisionmakers can      an orientation plan available.
better convert information and knowledge into un-           l Adapt MDMP for force planning and decision-
derstanding. Answers that are expected cannot be         making in the institutional Army.
creative and therefore may inhibit innovation.45 Tra-       The history of staff organization and operations
ditional Army organizational culture can stifle dis-     is clearly evolutionary, and for almost a century, no
sent, but wise leaders question the old answers, al-     major changes were made to the basic steps of esti-
low freedom of action and accept professional            mating the situation or providing analysis for
mistakes when subordinates experiment. Accepting         MDMP. The current edition of FM 101-5 introduces

52                                                                        July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
more of the thinking aspects of staff organization
and operations to avert conditions that lead to a com-                                     Traditional Army organizational culture
petency trap.                                                                           can stifle dissent, but wise leaders question the
   When continuing current operations become in-                                       old answers, allow freedom of action and accept
effective, innovative thinking can make a difference.                                      professional mistakes when subordinates
Effective new stratagems may not emerge clearly                                        experiment. Accepting risk in these areas fosters
from established doctrine; tactics, techniques and                                        learning and development among Army
procedures; or past successes and failures. In for-                                                     decisionmakers.
mulating innovative stratagems, MDMP will require
commanders and staffs to suspend traditional think-
ing and learn by treating:                                                             ciding and planning with a combination of intuition
   l Self as a hypothesis.                                                             and analysis are important to the success of Army op-
   l Intuition as reality.                                                             erations. As critical as the commander is, Slim rec-
   l Hypocrisy as transition.                                                          ognized that “There comes a moment in every battle
   l Memory as an enemy.                                                               against a stubborn enemy when the result hangs in
   l Experience as a theory.48                                                         the balance. Then the general, however skillful and
   Modern staff organization and procedures recog-                                     farsighted he may have been, must hand over to his
nize the value of innovative thinking and that de-                                     soldiers . . . to complete what he has begun.”49

    1. James D. Hittle, The Military Staff (Harrisburg, PA: The Stackpole Company,     (New York, NY: The Free Press, 1994), 230.
1961), 10-11.                                                                             26. Ibid., 193-98.
    2. Jay M. Shafritz, Phil Williams and Ronald S. Calinger, The Dictionary of 20th      27. Ackoff, 100-103.
Century World Politics (New York: Henry Holt and Company, 1993), 11.                      28. Ibid., 40.
    3. Henry Mintzberg, The Rise and Fall of Strategic Planning (New York: The            29. Robert H. Scales, Certain Victory: The US Army in the Gulf War (McLean,
Free Press, 1994), 360.                                                                VA: Brassey’s Inc., 1994), 86-112.
    4. Headquarters, Department of the Army (HQDA), Field Service Regulation              30. Department of the Navy, Headquarters, US Marine Corps, MCDP 5, Plan-
(Washington, DC: US Government Printing Office [GPO], 1914), 12.                       ning (Washington, DC: GPO, 21 July 1997), 3.
    5. HQDA, Field Service Regulation (Washington, DC: GPO, 1924), 6.                     31. Ibid., 36.
    6. US War Department, The Staff Officers’ Field Manual (Washington, DC:               32. Ibid., 38-41.
GPO, Part One 1932 and Part Two 1933), iii.                                               33. S.L.A. Marshall, The American Heritage History of World War I (New York:
    7. For example, a 1983 CGSC version was Reference Book 101-999, Staff              David McKay Company, 1964), 123.
Officers’ Handbook (Fort Leavenworth, KS: April 1983) and during the later 1980s          34. C.S. Forester, The General (Annapolis, MD: The Nautical and Aviation Pub-
and 1990s as almost annual editions of Student Text 100-9, Techniques for Tac-         lishing Company of America Inc., 1982), 195-96.
tical Decision Making, Commander’s Estimate or other similar titles.                      35. March, 96-97.
    8. US Army Field Manual (FM) 101-5, Staff Officers’ Field Manual: Staff Or-           36. Field Marshal The Viscount Slim, Defeat Into Victory (New York: David
ganization and Procedures (Washington, DC: GPO, July 1950), 63-66.                     McKay Company, 1961), 450.
    9. FM 101-5, Staff Officers’ Field Manual: Staff Organization and Procedures          37. Richard M Cyert and James G. March, A Behavioral Theory of the Firm,
(Washington, DC: GPO, November 1954), 94.                                              2d Edition, (Malden, MA: Blackwell Publishers, Inc., 1992), 174.
   10. FM 101-5, Staff Officers’ Field Manual: Staff Organization and Procedures          38. Lussier and Saxon, 3. The authors quote Lieutenant General Leonard P.
(Washington, DC: GPO, June 1968), 6-1.                                                 Wishart III when he was commander, Combined Arms Command, Fort Leaven-
   11. FM 101-5, Staff Officers’ Field Manual: Staff Organization and Procedures       worth, Kansas: “Command is the art of assigning missions, prioritizing resources,
(Washington, DC: GPO, July 1972), 5-5.                                                 guiding and directing subordinates, and focusing the entire command’s energy to
   12. Ibid., 5-6.                                                                     accomplish clear objectives. Control is the science of defining limits, computing
   13. Ibid., 5-14.                                                                    requirements, allocating resources, identifying and correcting deviations from guid-
   14. FM 101-5, Staff Organization and Operations (Washington, DC: GPO, May           ance, and directing subordinate actions to accomplish the commander’s intent.”
1984), H-1.                                                                               39. Ibid., 9.
   15. FM 101-5, Staff Organization and Operations (Washington, DC: GPO, May              40. Ibid., 20, quoting J.C. Madigan and G.E. Dodge, “Battle Command: Lead-
1997).                                                                                 ership and Decision-Making for War and Operations Other Than War,” ARI, Al-
   16. James W. Lussier and Terrill F. Saxon, Study Report 95-01, Critical Fac-        exandria, Virginia, 1994.
tors in the Art of Battlefield Command (Alexandria, VA: Army Research Institute           41. Mintzberg, 360.
for the Behavioral and Social Sciences (ARI), November 1994), 32-33.                      42. Karl Albrecht, Brain Power: Learn to Improve Your Thinking Skills (New York:
   17. Ibid., 36.                                                                      Simon & Schuster, 1992), 191.
   18. Ibid., 29.                                                                         43. Ibid., 191.
   19. Michael J. Bonometti and Colt A. Mefford, “An Analysis of Decision-Making          44. Ackoff, 128-38.
in a Military Population,” Unpublished Master’s Degree Thesis, US Air Force In-           45. Ibid.,150-56.
stitute of Technology, March 1985, 9-2. The authors reflect, based on their study         46. Joint Chiefs of Staff, Coordinating Draft of Joint Vision 2020 (Washington,
data of 43 Air Force and Army captains and majors, that “military decisionmakers       DC: GPO, 18 February 2000), 11.
generally make their decisions in a standard fashion.” This author speculates this        47. Rich Rees and Steve Sorrell, “Techniques to Shorten the Decision-Making
may be because the military way of making decisions has become so inculcated.          Process at the Task Force Level,” Armor, July-August 1997, 41-45; Norbert B.
   20. Notes taken during the Teaching Strategy Workshop, 14 April 2000, Elev-         Jocz, “The Accelerated Task Force Decision-Making Process,” Infantry, Novem-
enth Annual US Army War College (USAWC) Strategy Conference, Carlisle Bar-             ber-December 1996, 33-36; Gregory T. Banner, “Decision-Making—A Better Way,”
racks, Pennsylvania, 11-13 April 2000.                                                 Military Review, September-October 1997, 53-55; John Leddo, Mike O’Conner,
   21. Strategic Leadership Primer, ed. Roderick R. Magee, (Carlisle Barracks, PA:     Julie Doherty and Terry Bresnick, “Decision Making Under Uncertainty and Time
USAWC, 1998), 22.                                                                      Stress,” Study, Fort Leavenworth Research Unit, Kansas, January 1996; Ng Kok
   22. Russell L. Ackoff, Ackoff’s Best: His Classic Writings on Management (New       Wan, “Using Decision Trees to Direct the Planning Thought-Process: An Enhance-
York: John Wiley & Sons Inc., 1999), 138-42.                                           ment to the Planning Methodology,” Unpublished Master’s Degree Thesis, Fort
   23. Lawrence G. Shattuck, “Communicating Intent and Imparting Presence,”            Leavenworth, Kansas: 1995; Richard Day Lawrence, “A Study of Quasi-Analytic
Military Review, March-April 2000, 66-72.                                              Models for the Improvement of the Military Commander’s Tactical Decision Pro-
   24. James E. Driskell and Eduardo Salas, “Group Decision-Making Under               cess,” Unpublished Doctoral Dissertation, Ohio State University, 1968.
Stress,” Journal of Applied Psychology, June 1991, 473-79.                                48. March, 262-63.
   25. James G. March, A Primer on Decision Making: How Decisions Happen                  49. Slim, 460.

                       Colonel Christopher R. Paparone, US Army, is a Ph.D. candidate in the Army War College
                    Professorship Program at Pennsylvania State University. He received a B.A. from the University
                    of South Florida and M.A.s from Florida Institute of Technology and the US Naval War College.
                    He is a graduate of the US Army War College. He served in various command and staff positions
                    in the Continental United States and Germany, including deputy G3, 21st Theater Support Com-
                    mand, Kaiserslautern, Germany; and battalion commander, 47th Forward Support Battalion, 1st
                    Armored Division, Bad Kreuznach, Germany. His article “Piercing the Corporate Veil: OE and
                    Army Transformation” appeared in the March-April 2001 Military Review.

MILITARY REVIEW              l   July-August 2001                                                                                                                     53
      It takes an Army to deter a war.
              — US Army Chief of Staff General Eric K. Shinseki      The inability to provide assaulting

                                                                     forces with reliable, tactically responsive,
    F THE US ARMY is to deter war in the 21st                        all-weather fire support prevents the
      century, it must embrace its largely ignored am-               United States from effectively projecting
phibious warfare responsibilities and focus doctrine                 power and risks needless casualties,
and capabilities on rapidly projecting power to domi-                being defeated or both. . . . In the initial
nate littoral (coastal) regions. The most effective                  stages of any joint littoral operation,
method for the Army to achieve littoral deterrence                   until sufficient time elapses to deploy
in the near term is through deploying interim brigade                organic artillery, both services must rely
combat teams (IBCTs) as part of an integrated, syn-
chronized joint task force (JTF) to secure port fa-                  primarily on naval aviation and long-
cilities and airfields.                                              range NSFS, which require more than
   Since 1990 US forces have been involved in 50                     10 minutes to respond.
crises around the world, most supported by Marine
and Navy amphibious forces deployed to littoral re-                  US Marine Corps (USMC) and Army forces.”2
gions. About 70 percent of the world’s population lives              Furthermore, the Navy cannot provide tactically re-
within 75 miles of a coastline. The rapid growth of                  sponsive NSFS to troops ashore without the major-
megacities in the littorals and resultant avalanche of               caliber guns of the Iowa-class battleships, which the
changing demographics, competition for resources                     Navy refuses to maintain in active service. For lit-
and indigenous tensions have produced regions                        toral conflicts, the Iowa-class battleships should be
plagued by strife and conflict. Littoral operations are              designated and funded as joint national assets.
expected to be the norm for the 21st century.                           The Army and USMC are implementing strate-
   However, successfully performing the littoral com-                gic and operational maneuver concepts to meet
bat mission requires tactically responsive naval sur-                requirements for increased mobility. The Army’s
face fire support (NSFS). Operations in Kosovo                       near-term response is the Interim Force while the
demonstrated that bad weather can wipe out air                       Objective Force takes shape. The USMC’s near-
support. Global Positioning System (GPS)-guided,                     term and long-term strategies are Marine Corps
precision-guided munitions (PGMs) could not de-                      Strategy 21 and Operational Maneuver From the
stroy Serbian ground forces. NATO employed more                      Sea (OMFTS). These revolutionary maneuver con-
than 10,000 PGMs and destroyed only 14 tanks, 18                     cepts could significantly enhance US ability to wage
armored personnel carriers (APCs) and 20 artillery                   and win strategic and operational war. However, the
pieces.1 However, they proved effective when em-                     inability to provide assaulting forces with reliable, tac-
ployed against stationary targets such as bridges,                   tically responsive, all-weather fire support prevents
power plants, railroads and the Chinese Embassy.                     the United States from effectively projecting power
Unfortunately, “The Navy admits that it currently has                and risks needless casualties, being defeated or both.
no credible surface fire capabilities to support                        Regardless of how a force arrives, it deploys on
forced-entry from the sea and inland operations by                   the ground and fights tactically. Fire support to sol-
                                                                     diers and Marines ashore require reliable, high-
The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do   volume, tactically responsive, lethal, all-weather
not purport to reflect the position of the Department of the Army,   systems. Neither maneuver concept adequately
the Department of Defense or any other government office or
agency.—Editor                                                       considers or provides fire support that meets the

MILITARY REVIEW       l   July-August 2001                                                                                  55
                                                                   realities of close combat. In the initial stages of any
Floating Fortress                                                  joint littoral operation, until sufficient time elapses to
                                                                   deploy organic artillery, both services must rely pri-
      Duringthe1982Falklands-MalvinasWar,Exocetantiship            marily on naval aviation and long-range NSFS, which
 missiles and conventional bombs struck 16 British war-            require more than 10 minutes to respond.
 ships, sinking seven and severely damaging three. A                  Sometimes “tactical” is so broadly defined that it
 containership was sunk with thousands of tons of stores           is dangerously imprecise. US Army Field Manual
 and ammunition as well as half the helicopters dedicated          (FM) 100-15, Corps Operations, defines the corps
 to the land force. British carriers were forced to operate at     “as the largest tactical unit in the US Army,” a defi-
 theextremerangeoftheinvasionarea.                                 nition unchanged in more than 60 years.3 Everything
      The vulnerability of modern, lightly armored warships to     from the front-line foxhole to the corps rear area is
 determined air attack had changed little since World War
 II. Yet, even as the Argentine and British forces fought in the   considered tactical. The close battle, main battle,
 South Atlantic, work began at the Long Beach Naval Ship-          deep battle and rear battle are all tactical operations
 yard to modernize a warship largely impervious to conven-         but could be up to 90 miles apart. Fire support re-
 tional weapons. The USS New Jersey was the first of four          sponsiveness for soldiers in foxholes (or Marines on
 Iowa-class battleships returned to active service as part of      the beach) is clearly different from what a corps
 PresidentRonaldReagan’smaritimestrategy.                          needs for the fight.
      Built during World War II, these vessels still had as much      The corps- and joint-level task force headquar-
 as 20 years of service life remaining. In addition, antiship      ters have too many communication layers between
 weaponshadbeendesignedoverthedecadestocounterin-                  them and the shooters to be responsive to the close
 creasingly thin-skinned warships. With a 6-inch armor deck        fight and main battle. Although we have sensor-to-
 and hull and citadel armor ranging up to 14.5 inches thick,       shooter connectivity, it is doubtful that high-level re-
 the battleships would be able to engage in sustained, all-        sponsiveness can be sustained hundreds of times a
 weather operations in even the most deadly environments.          day across a corps’ front. These applications are
 All four ships were recommissioned by 1988 with state-of-
 the-art communications, radar, nuclear-biological-chemical
                                                                   best suited for high-payoff targets or special opera-
 protection, chaff and electronic countermeasures systems.         tions but cannot reliably support the volume of re-
 Additional weapons included 16 Harpoon and 32 Toma-               quests needed for large-scale combat.
 hawk cruise missiles as well as four 20mm Phalanx sys-               Although the corps operates in the field under tac-
 tems (similar to the Vulcan). Today, two ships, the Wiscon-       tical environmental conditions, due to technological
 sin and Iowa, are maintained, ready for activation under the      advancements in command, control, communications
 termsofUSPublicLaw104-106.                                        and computers, intelligence, surveillance and recon-
      Former US Navy Secretary John Lehman believes this           naissance (C4ISR), today’s corps and corps-sized
 level of readiness is insufficient and that the Wisconsin and     JTFs conduct an operational level of war and influ-
 Iowa “should be kept in a ready-reserve status, manned by         ence an operational battle space. Today’s corps can
 a cadre of regulars and a majority of drilling reservists.” In    influence an area of operation formerly assigned to
 this status, says Lehman, “they could do occasional show-         numbered US armies in World War II.
 the-flag cruises and rapidly deploy in time of crisis.” He           Because the range and responsiveness of organic
 dismisses arguments that the ships are too manpower-              weapon systems is limited, the division should be
 with 1,400 officers and men. By manning only two of the           designated the largest tactical unit. Additionally, the
 four engine rooms, they still make 24 knots and save sev-         tactical battle space should be redefined to mirror
 eral hundred crew. With other sensible reductions made            the zones and sectors assigned to divisions. Associ-
 possible by newer technology they could be manned with            ated battle areas—the close fight, main fight, deep
 fewer than 800. At whatever manning, there simply is no           battle and rear battle—must specify responsive
 substitute for those 16-inch guns. On the first salvo they can    thresholds because time and distance are interde-
 be in the wrong county, but with drone or aircraft spotting       pendent, defining criteria. Department of Defense
 thesubsequentroundshave100-yardorbetteraccuracy.”                 (DOD) Directive 5100.1 sets forth the Army’s am-
      Lehman points out that “the Exocet can penetrate only        phibious mission requirements: “The primary func-
 2.75 inches of armor” and that similar missiles “would have       tions of the Army are:
 no effect against any of the armor of the BBs.” He cautions,         “ To organize, equip and provide Army
 however, that no amount of protection can prevent all ca-         Forces, in coordination with other Military Services,
 sualties, particularly if hits are made on the less-armored       for joint amphibious . . . operations and to provide
 portions of the superstructure. Still, “The only real conven-
 tional threat to the BBs,” says Lehman, “is the huge under-       for the training of such forces, in accordance with
 keel Russian torpedo, but even there, the BBs have triple-        joint doctrines.
 layered bottoms. In short, compared to the 1/4-inch steel of         “ [Develop,] in coordination with other
 the billion-dollar Aegis ships, the BBs are invulnerable.”        Military Services, doctrines, tactics, techniques, and
                                                                   equipment of interest to the Army for amphibious

56                                                                                    July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
operations and not provided for elsewhere.” 4
   Although this directive, as worded, is speaking of     A ship 1,000 miles away can
World War II, Normandy Beach-like operations, it          fire a Tomahawk cruise missile, which
affords the Army broad latitude to “Develop . . . doc-    takes up to 1 hour, 49 minutes to reach
trines, tactics, techniques, and equipment of interest    the target, and still meet requirements
to the Army for [littoral] operations which do not        for NSFS if the missile is launched
exist or are not addressed” yet are required for suc-     2 minutes, 30 seconds after the request.
cessful amphibious operations.5                           The term “tactical Tomahawk” is
   As the USMC’s long-range concept for respond-          an oxymoron and illustrates a lack
ing to 21st-century littoral conflicts, OMFTS relies      of appreciation for the need for
heavily on its ability to launch and support amphibi-
ous assaults from ships 70 to 115 miles inland be-
                                                          tactically responsive fires.
yond the horizon. Based on a triad of revolutionary
lift assets such as the MV-22 Osprey tilt-rotor air-      craft. Parallel capabilities would provide a synergistic
craft, the advanced amphibious assault vehicle            force multiplier, especially for JTFs trying to surge
(AAAV) and the recently upgraded landing craft,           combat power quickly.
air-cushion (LCAC), OMFTS will project power in-
land. On 16 November 2000, the USMC publicly re-          TacticalFiresNotConsidered
vealed its first step toward achieving its long-term         Unfortunately, as planning to support IBCTs and
vision. Identified as Marine Corps Strategy 21, the       OMFTS becomes more definitive, important tacti-
Marines’ new goals are bold but achievable: two bri-      cal requirements remain ill-defined, if not neglected.
gades—almost 40,000 Marines—deployed any-                 In the Army’s case, the fire support deficiency is
where in the world, regardless of available infrastruc-   highlighted by an October 1999 Deputy Chief of
ture, ready to operate in one week or less.6              Staff for Operations and Plans (DCSOPS) meet-
                                                          ing of the Council of Colonels. Transformation work-
AmphibiousWarfareToday                                    shops were conducted to “enable early and continu-
   Typically, in any littoral scenario, the amphibious    ous joint, integrated and overwhelming strategic
ready group (ARG) will deliver the first ground           and operational fires and maneuver, throughout the
forces most readily available to respond to a littoral    depth and breadth of the battlespace and across the
crisis. Typically a Marine expeditionary unit/special     spectrum of operations.” 9
operations-capable (MEU/SOC), a reinforced infan-            The USMC has understood the need to support
try battalion, can respond within hours to days, de-      amphibious operations with tactically responsive
pending on the ARG’s proximity to the crisis. How-        fires. On 3 December 1996 the commanding gen-
ever, the next available Marine force, the Marine         eral, Marine Corps Combat Development Command
expeditionary brigade (MEB), arrives 11 days after        (MCCDC), Quantico, Virginia, Lieutenant General
the MEU deploys. For crises requiring a force larger      (LtGen) Paul K. Van Riper, submitted requirements
than an MEU and sooner than an MEB, the Army’s            for NSFS, calling for responsiveness of 2 minutes,
82d Airborne Division and IBCTs are ideal. The            30 seconds from call for fire to rounds striking the
Army should contribute IBCTs to JTFs responsible          target.10
for securing port facilities and littoral airfields.         However, changes to the wording of the Marine
   Employing IBCTs to respond to littoral national        requirements document raise doubts. In a letter dated
security interests would not be interpreted as an         16 June 1999 to the Chief of Naval Operations (N81),
encroachment on Marine Corps turf. USMC lead-             new commanding general, MCCDC, then LtGen
ers acknowledge that the Corps alone is too small         J.E. Rhodes, redefined this requirement. The require-
to adequately respond to large-scale crises. Com-         ment now calls for a “system response” of 2 min-
mandant of the Marine Corps General James L.              utes, 30 seconds from the time “the fire direction
Jones stated: “Marines win battles, the Army wins         center receives the call for fire until ordnance is fired
Wars.” 7 Testifying before the Senate Armed Ser-          or launched.”11 A munition’s time of flight is excluded
vices Committee during his confirmation hearings,         from this requirement. The redefinition has had a
then Lieutenant General Jones said, “There has            dramatically negative impact on responsiveness. A
never been a crowded battlefield. Our comple-             ship 1,000 miles away can fire a Tomahawk cruise
mentary relationship with the Army is an impor-           missile, which takes up to 1 hour, 49 minutes to reach
tant force multiplier for the Nation.” 8                  the target, and still meet requirements for NSFS
   USMC doctrine clearly describes surface move-          if the missile is launched 2 minutes, 30 seconds af-
ment for ship-to-objective maneuver (STOM).               ter the request. The term “tactical Tomahawk” is
IBCTs, on the other hand, would primarily use air-        an oxymoron and illustrates a lack of appreciation

MILITARY REVIEW   l   July-August 2001                                                                          57
A Tomahawk cruise missile is launched
from the USS Missouri during Operation
Desert Storm, 17 January 1991.

                                                                       assisted) is 68.5 seconds, for a total execution re-
                                                                       sponsiveness of 2 minutes, 23.5 seconds—a tougher
                                                                       standard than the USMC requirement.
                                                                          If this is the current Army standard for tactical
                                                                       fire support responsiveness, if the USMC follows the
                                                                       Army’s Artillery School for tactics, techniques and
                                                                       procedures (TTP), and if the US military is always
                                                                       to fight jointly, this fire support standard should also
                                                                       apply to the Navy and support for soldiers and Ma-
                                                                       rines ashore. Additionally, the tactical battle space
                                                                       should be limited to the distance at which fires can
                                                                       range targets and still be responsive in any weather.
                                                                       This designation applies for all ground operations,
                                                                       whether in the littorals or in the Balkans. Doctrine
                                                                       can grow as technology improves so that fire sup-
                                                                       port remains tactically responsive and “be doctrinally
                                                                       sound but not doctrinally bound.”14
                                                             US Navy
                                                                          General Anthony C. Zinni, USMC, commander
                                                                       in chief (CINC) of US Central Command, detailed
      For a relatively small investment,                               shortfalls in joint fire support capabilities for forced-
    several battleship upgrades would                                  entry scenarios. He asked, “How do we employ joint
 enable tactically responsive, extended-                               fires when we’re building up the force? It’s easy to
   range joint fires and quickly integrate                             employ joint fires in an exercise where the entire
 US and coalition fires—air and indirect.                              force is already in place.”15 The inability to perform
   Modernized battleships can integrate                                joint fires is not due to a lack of doctrine. Joint Pub-
                                                                       lication 3-09, Doctrine for Joint Fire Support, was
          and synchronize the joint fires                              published 12 May 1998. The inability to provide joint
                      mission end to end.                              fires stems from a serious lack of weapon systems
                                                                       capable of providing joint fires. Elaborating, Zinni
for the need for tactically responsive fires.                          said, “What we need going in is a capability to quickly
    Even 2 minutes, 30 seconds can seem like a life-                   integrate US and coalition fires—air and indirect
time when you need fire support. Perhaps this is part                  fires. . . . The first few days are going to be criti-
of the problem. Not enough of today’s soldiers have                    cal, until we can build up to the point where we have
experienced combat, and decisionmakers too often                       the combat advantage over the enemy.”16
fail to listen to those who have. Recently retired                        In a June 2000 interview, Jones stated, “One of
General Barry R. McCaffrey stated, “With only a                        the lessons from Kosovo for me was that weather
handful of exceptions, our soldiers have never wit-                    still plays an important role in the ability of a plat-
nessed a protracted, high-casualty ground campaign.                    form to deliver rounds on target, precision or other-
. . . Many of the lessons of Vietnam have been lost,                   wise. . . . Something like 50 percent of the time we
forgotten, or cast aside—deemed inconvenient or                        were unable to fly to do below-the-clouds close
irrelevant. . . . It is critical that they learn from, and             air support.”17
not repeat, the mistakes of the past.”12
    Testimony of ground combat veterans of Korea                       WhyNSFSisnotCredible
and Vietnam; after-action reviews (AARs) from                              In the initial stages of a joint littoral operation, un-
training engagements at the Army’s National Train-                     til sufficient time elapses to deploy organic artillery
ing Center (NTC), Fort Irwin, California; and cur-                     assets, both services must rely heavily on air power
rent Army artillery performance standards reveal that                  (primarily naval aviation) for fire support because the
the original USMC requirement of 2 minutes, 30 sec-                    Navy cannot provide credible NSFS to support joint
onds is dead on target. Army fire support perfor-                      Marine and Army amphibious operations. Even “the
mance standards for the Paladin, M109A6, 155mm                         Navy admits that it currently has no credible sur-
howitzer specify a 75-second (outside the radius) re-                  face fire capabilities to support forced-entry from the
sponsiveness requirement for a “Hip Shoot.”13 Time                     sea and inland operations by Marine Corps and
of flight for 155mm projectiles out to an 18.1-kilometer               Army forces.”18 A 1999 Navy Report to Congress
(km) maximum range (nonsuper-charged, nonrocket-                       reaffirmed this, stating, “[the] Navy does not pos-

58                                                                                         July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
                                                                          The USS Iowa fires one of its six starboard
                                                                          5-inch (127mm) guns during an Atlantic
                                                                          training exercise. While a battleship’s nine
                                                                          16-inch (406mm) guns work to isolate a
                                                                          beachhead, its 5-inch guns can level precision
                                                                          direct fires just as effectively as they have
                                                                          from World War II through Desert Storm.
sess an operational capability that meets current
Marine Corps naval surface fire support require-
ments.”19 This statement remains true today. There
are two principal reasons why the Navy cannot per-
form the NSFS mission:
   l The Navy’s departure from heavy, armored,
major-caliber gunships (battleships with 16-inch guns
and cruisers with 12-inch and 8-inch guns) in favor
of naval aviation and today’s lightly armored missile
ships, such as the USS Cole, with small, 5-inch
(127mm) guns.
   l Its decommissioning of Iowa-class battleships
in the early 1990s without a comparable replacement.
   Retired Colonel James E. Lasswell, former head
of experimentation operations, USMC Warfighting
Lab, Quantico, Virginia, wrote: “Current [naval fires]
systems are too few, too short in range, and inad-
equate for providing the kind of fire support needed

                                                           US Navy
to support any sizable sea-based maneuver operation.
War games and experiments have identified serious
problems in conducting . . . STOM—forcible entry                     During the Gulf War, on two
operations—without a robust naval-fire capability.                   occasions, USS Wisconsin’s gunfire
Littoral penetration points cannot be adequately iso-                forced Iraqis to surrender. Battleships’
lated, counter-battery fires are not sufficient, and re-             impact on Iraqi coastal defenses did not
sponsive fires in support of maneuver are inad-                      go unnoticed by the Soviets: “Their
equate. . . . Absent the introduction of a significantly             salvos are producing a ‘strong impres-
improved naval surface fire system, landing forces                   sion’ on the Iraqis: they are abandoning
will continue to rely on air-delivered munitions as                  their coastal positions and pulling back
the primary fire support instrument during sea-based                 northward tens of kilometers.”
maneuver operations. This situation will persist until
they can drag their own fire support [ashore].” 20
                                                                     of 10 to 20 meters. The EX-171 relies on a rocket
NavyNSFSSolutionsareInadequate                                       motor that generates 18 megajoules of energy to
   Navy solutions to the NSFS gap include two near-                  reach an altitude of 80,000 to 85,000 feet from
term programs—the 5-inch extended-range guided                       where it glides to its target.22
munition (ERGM) and land-attack standard missile                        The program calls for fitting one gun to each of
(LASM) — and one long-term program — the                             29 new Arleigh Burke-class destroyers (DDG-51s)
155mm advanced gun system (AGS) for the DD                           beginning in 2001. The Navy plans to retrofit two
21 land-attack destroyer. According to Lasswell,                     of the guns on each of 22 Ticonderoga-class Ae-
these programs, “if fully funded and implemented,                    gis cruisers (CG-47) to give the ships an ERGM
could put a dent in the requirement.”21 Soldiers and                 capability. By Fiscal Year (FY) 2005, there will be
Marines performing the littoral combat mission do                    26 5-inch, 62-caliber guns in the fleet on 18 DDGs
not want fire support that only makes dents in their                 and four cruisers. By FY 09 the program is to be
targets; they want their targets destroyed immedi-                   fully fielded.23
ately, anytime, under all weather conditions.                           Program status. The ERGM program is deeply
   ERGM is part of a $2.1-billion program to design,                 mired in technical difficulties, six years behind sched-
test and field a long-range munition for the Navy’s                  ule and significantly over budget. Worse, the rate of
new 5-inch, Mk 45 Mod 4, 62-caliber gun system.                      fire will likely drop significantly from the promised
The EX-171 is a 12-caliber (61 inches long), 110-                    12 rounds per minute because of the extreme tem-
pound, rocket-assisted projectile that carries a 19-                 peratures generated by firing such a “hot” round. A
pound payload of 72 Army M-80 antimateriel/anti-                     more realistic estimate is three to four rounds per
personnel submunitions that will produce a circular                  minute with significant barrel wear.
destructive pattern on the ground to a planned maxi-                    According to an ERGM program source and con-
mum range of 63 nautical miles in 7 to 8 minutes.                    firmed by a senior official, during a six-round, rapid-
Relying on an on-board GPS-updated Inertial Navi-                    fire slug test in February 2001, the barrel warped
gation System (INS), ERGM will have an accuracy                      due to extreme overheating and caused the fourth

MILITARY REVIEW    l   July-August 2001                                                                                    59
                                                         vulnerability’ during the early stages of ship-to-
           During a six-round, rapid-fire                objective maneuver [STOM] when organic artillery
   slug test in February 2001, the barrel                is afloat.”26
warped due to extreme overheating and                       l GPS vulnerability to jamming. GPS-guided fire
  caused the fourth round to stick in the                support solutions are problematic. Such projectiles
barrel. The extreme barrel heat melted                   are easily jammed, and their small payloads (designed
 the projectile’s on-board GPS/INS, but                  to minimize collateral damage) ensure that the tar-
          incredibly, the Navy ruled the                 get will not be destroyed when jamming occurs.
                         test a success.                 Relatively low-power jammers can distort naviga-
                                                         tion out to 120 miles. Iraq successfully used Rus-
                                                         sian-made jammers to lead Operation Northern
round to stick in the barrel. The extreme barrel heat    Watch aircraft off course, and China is also devel-
melted the projectile’s on-board GPS/INS, but in-        oping a jamming capability. Things will not get bet-
credibly, the Navy ruled the test a success. Design-     ter: “GPS jamming is a train wreck waiting to hap-
ing an inertial measurement unit, an essential part      pen. And it’s not a question of whether it will happen,
of the system’s GPS guidance package, is also dif-       but when.”27 Threats could easily and quickly build
ficult because it must withstand the force of 12,000     and deploy cheap but numerous, effective jammers
Gs as it leaves the gun barrel. To make matters          to defeat GPS-guided weapons. Russian-designed,
worse, according to a 1997 General Accounting Of-        inexpensive GPS jammers are now widely avail-
fice letter, “The near-term [ERGM] phase of the          able—one such device can even be purchased
[Navy’s NSFS] program is not expected or designed        through the Internet.
to fully meet the fire support requirements recently        Land-attack standard missile (LASM). The
established by the USMC. A key deficiency is re-         supersonic LASM is installed on Aegis warships and
sponsiveness.”24 Moreover, Lieutenant General            uses GPS and INS for precision guidance. Program
Michael Williams testified on 2 March 2000 that          funding for LASM started in FY 00, and LASM ini-
ERGM will not have the necessary lethality.              tial operating capability is planned for FY 03. The
   Performance deficiencies. Following are some          procurement objective is 800 missiles. There have
serious ERGM performance deficiencies:                   been three flight demonstrations and two warhead
   l Responsiveness. Van Riper said, “A consistent       arena tests, but missile solutions for fire support are
concern is time of flight, which could be eight to       insufficient because they “fail to provide the antici-
nine minutes. If the target is mobile, it could disap-   pated responsiveness and volume of fire needed by
pear even if terminal guidance were available.”25        the landing force.”28 Due to their lengthy mission
For instance, an enemy tank traveling 25 miles per       planning process, missiles are not tactically respon-
hour (mph) will have traveled 3.1 miles in the time      sive and are best employed against stationary or
it takes ERGM to reach the target from maximum           fixed C4ISR targets. They also are vulnerable to
range.                                                   GPS jamming effects. Exorbitant unit costs
   l Destruction fires. The 5-inch ERGM (only            ($750,000 to $1.5 million each) and the number of
slightly bigger than a 120mm mortar) holds 72            missiles required to support any real conflict will re-
M-80 submunitions, which are ineffective against         sult in a limited production which, in turn, will quickly
hard targets such as tanks, APCs, bunkers, caves         be expended, as occurred in Kosovo.
and fortifications that soldiers and Marines typi-          Advanced gun system (AGS). The AGS is a
cally face in littoral regions.                          155mm gun weapon system planned for installation
   l Sustained/subsequent operations ashore. The         in the DD 21 land-attack destroyer, which is still in
DDG’s on-board storage capacity of only 230              the design stage. DD 21 will carry two 155mm guns
ERGMs cannot support sustained operations ashore.        capable of independently firing twelve 200-pound,
At its sustained rate of 10 rounds per minute, the       GPS-guided, ERGM-like rounds per minute, out to
DDG is out of ammunition after 23 minutes.               115 miles, from two 750-round automated maga-
   l Volume. The DDG’s single gun cannot achieve         zines. However, one of these guns is projected for
the volume required. Van Riper writes of “a need         removal in favor of a vertical launch system to sup-
for low-cost, high-volume rounds that can be used        port theater ballistic missile defense.
to provide close supporting fires to maneuvering land       The first AGS is scheduled for delivery in FY 06,
forces. Quantity of fire, on time and on target, has     with an initial operating capability of 2008. However,
a quality all its own. Precision/terminally guided       the first DD 21 probably will not be fielded until 2012
munitions are needed but not to the exclusion of in-     or produced in sufficient numbers until after 2020.
expensive, volume fire munitions. Both precise and       Even when the systems are fully fielded, “DD 21
less-precise munitions are critical in the ‘window of    will not be able to match the Iowa-class battleships

60                                                                          July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
             The USS Missouri (BB-63) steams alongside the USS Wisconsin
             (BB-64) during operations in the Persian Gulf, January 1991.

US Navy

          The Navy has been reluctant to invest in the capabilities of a
          small ship class when the equipment developed could not be used elsewhere in
          the fleet. However, the 16-inch extended-range ammunition is a special case that
          can be justified economically as well as operationally. The investment pays off
          during operations that involve a large portion of the Navy’s amphibious
          shipping but only a few of its surface combatants.

          in firepower and shock effect.”29 In the meantime,             Invest in four ships. The Navy has been re-
          the absence of NSFS makes the risk to fighting              luctant to invest in the capabilities of a small ship
          forces ashore “very high right now.”30 For at least         class when the equipment developed could not be
          the next 20 years, no options other than modernized         used elsewhere in the fleet. However, the 16-inch
          battleships will eliminate this very high risk.             extended-range ammunition is a special case that can
                                                                      be justified economically as well as operationally. The
          TheSolution                                                 investment pays off during operations that involve a
             Currently, only major-caliber guns have the all-         large portion of the Navy’s amphibious shipping but
          weather reliability, lethality and responsiveness to        only a few of its surface combatants.
          support tactical operations. Such guns are now found           Further, implementing laser guidance could trans-
          only on the Navy’s two mothballed Iowa-class                form ballistic projectiles into PGMs that can be
          battleships (USS Iowa, BB-61, and USS Wiscon-               guided from a wide range of sources, including the
          sin, BB-64). The 16-inch Mark VII gun shoots                eight remotely piloted vehicles organic to the battle-
          1,900-pound, high-capacity, shore-bombardment               ship. This capability will give troops ashore highly
          projectiles out to 24 miles with flight times under 2       reliable fire support in the close fight that is respon-
          minutes. However, with extended-range projectiles,          sive, precise and lethal. Extended-range ballistic pro-
          like those in development during the late 1980s and         jectiles can provide all-weather, lifesaving fire sup-
          early 1990s, major-caliber guns could deliver projec-       port on time—anytime.
          tiles varying in weight (525 to 1,300 pounds) out to           Other major-caliber, extended-range projectiles
          52 statute miles in approximately 2 minutes. This           could be employed to support a proposed division
          time of flight still leaves sufficient time to develop a    deep-battle responsiveness requirement of 5 minutes.
          fire solution and still put steel on target in 2 minutes,   In 1991 the Defense Advanced Research Projects
          30 seconds. Tight shooting powders such as the              Agency proposed an 11-inch sabot projectile, fired
          Army’s M31 could produce unguided, ballistic cir-           from a 16-inch gun, which would have had a 115-
          cular error probable (CEP) on the order of 250              mile projected range and a 4-minute time of flight.
          meters at 52 miles with a lethal radius of approxi-         Since ballistic accuracy decreases beyond 50 miles,
          mately 200 meters. Unlike GPS-guided fire support,          terminal guidance would be necessary to maintain
          16-inch gunfire is timely, not subject to jamming or        acceptable accuracy. Large-caliber projectiles fired
          inclement weather and cannot be shot down.                  beyond 52 miles would represent transition to the

          MILITARY REVIEW    l   July-August 2001                                                                          61
                                                         a fire support ship to be configured with TAB ra-
        Threats could easily and quickly                 dar. A maritime version of the AN/TPQ-37 Firefinder
 build and deploy cheap but numerous,                    radar could pinpoint enemy artillery and Scud-type
effective jammers to defeat GPS-guided                   weapons engaging ground troops ashore for the
 weapons. Russian-designed, inexpen-                     battleship’s 16-inch guns to destroy immediately.
    sive GPS jammers are now widely                         Vertical-Launch-System (VLS) Tomahawks.
 available—one such device can even                      Plans exist to install 96 VLS Tomahawk missiles.
     be purchased through the Internet.                  The below-deck design significantly increases their
                                                         survivability and lethality. These missiles would be
operational battle space because of responsiveness.      instrumental in destroying key enemy fixed or sta-
  A snapshot of today’s sealift and other movement       tionary C4ISR, air defense targets essential in blind-
capabilities shows “only incremental change from the     ing the enemy and “rolling back” enemy defenses.
way we had conducted amphibious operations in the           Deterring war and winning wars when deterrence
1940s.”31 For some time, amphibious operations           fails is the US military’s defining mission. No single
would be similar to World War II over-the-beach          weapon system short of nuclear weapons deters
operations. Unfortunately, without battleships, they     aggression like the battleship. For example, during
will be performed with casualties like those on          the Iran-Iraq “tanker war” in the 1980s, every time
Omaha Beach, where there was insufficient battle-        the Iowa would enter the Persian Gulf, all the shoot-
ship support.                                            ing would stop and “all southern Iran would go
ModernizedIowa-ClassBattleships                             The battleship’s effectiveness in winning war is
   The battleship, with its major-caliber guns, is the   even more impressive. From World War II to the
only system that can be modernized to meet the many      Gulf War, battleships’ major-caliber naval gunfire has
rigorous fire support requirements of 21st-century       proven to remove the enemy’s will to fight. On 10
JTF commanders performing littoral combat mis-           June 1944 German Field Marshal Erwin Rommel
sions. For a relatively small investment, several        complained, “Our operations in Normandy are tre-
battleship upgrades would enable tactically respon-      mendously hampered, and in some places even ren-
sive, extended-range joint fires and quickly integrate   dered impossible by the . . . effect of the heavy na-
US and coalition fires—air and indirect. Modern-         val guns . . . [which] is so immense that no operation
ized battleships can integrate and synchronize the       of any kind is possible in that area.”33 Half a world
joint fires mission end to end.                          away, another enemy faced the same frustration.
   Advanced Field Artillery Tactical Data Sys-           General Tadamichi Kuribayashi, commanding gen-
tem (AFATDS). This Army and USMC automated               eral of Japanese forces in Iwo Jima, telegraphed the
artillery system plans, executes and tracks fire sup-    Chief of the General Staff that “the violence of the
port missions. A battleship with AFATDS would fill       enemy’s bombardments is beyond description. . . .
the need for integrating joint fires to support Army     The power of the U.S. warships [battleships] . . .
and USMC forces engaged in close combat ashore.          makes every landing operation possible to whatever
   Target-acquisition battery (TAB) radar. In-           beachhead they like.”34 During the Vietnam War,
cluded in Van Riper’s memo was a requirement for         the New Jersey’s mere presence so terrorized the
                                                         North Vietnamese that they insisted it be withdrawn
                                                         in 1969 because it “impeded peace talks.”
                                                            During the Gulf War, on two occasions, USS
                                                         Wisconsin’s gunfire forced Iraqis to surrender.
                                                         Battleships’ impact on Iraqi coastal defenses did not
                                                         go unnoticed by the Soviets: “Their salvos are pro-
                                                         ducing a ‘strong impression’ on the Iraqis: they are
                                                         abandoning their coastal positions and pulling back
                                                         northward tens of kilometers.” 35
                                                            Dominating the 21st-century littoral battle space
                                                         will be the US military’s primary mission. Fire sup-
                                                         port from the major-caliber guns, like the Iowa-class
                                                         battleships, has proven to be an essential enabler to
                                                         successfully performing the littoral combat mission
                                                         to whatever beachhead desired. Extending the arc
                                                         of battleships’ major-caliber guns with extended-
                                                         range projectiles as far as possible makes infinitely

62                                                                         July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
US Navy
                                                                  In 1944, shipyard workers cheer the
                                                                  launching of the USS Missouri, one
                                                                  of the last US armored warships.

          Currently, only major-caliber guns have the all-weather reliability, lethality
          and responsiveness to support tactical operations. Such guns are now found only
          on the Navy’s two mothballed Iowa-class battleships. The 16-inch Mark VII gun
          shoots 1,900-pound, high-capacity, shore-bombardment projectiles
          out to 24 miles with flight times under 2 minutes.

          MILITARY REVIEW   l   July-August 2001                                                 63
                                                                                         toolkit” was first proposed in October 1998 as a
      Sometimes “tactical” is so broadly                                                 workaround to the Navy’s arguments for not main-
 defined that it is dangerously imprecise.                                               taining them in active service.36 First, the Navy
      . . . The tactical battle space should                                             must reactivate the battleships. If the bureaucratic
    be redefined to mirror the zones and                                                 resistance is too great, Congress could step in and
  sectors assigned to divisions. Associ-                                                 do three things:
                                                                                            l Declare them national assets.
 ated battle areas—the close fight, main
                                                                                            l Provide a separate, joint funding line for US
     fight, deep battle and rear battle—                                                 Joint Forces Command, the headquarters with the
   must specify responsive thresholds                                                    mission to operate and maintain these invaluable
  because time and distance are inter-                                                   ships.
              dependent, defining criteria.                                                 l Modify Title III to allow the services’ man-
                                                                                         power ceilings to be exceeded by the correspond-
good sense and gives US littoral forces performing                                       ing amount of personnel assigned operating and
operational and strategic maneuver the potential to                                      maintaining joint weapons.
achieve Sun Tzu’s supreme excellence.                                                       An 8 July 1995 Senate Armed Services Com-
   The Navy has determined that the blue-water                                           mittee report stated that the Iowa-class battleships
strategy does not apply in the 21st century and re-                                      are our country’s “only remaining potential source
placed it with a brown-water strategy (littoral war-                                     of around-the-clock accurate, high volume, heavy
fare). The Navy must ultimately realize that with                                        fire support” for Marine and Army amphibious and
this shift in strategy comes the primary responsi-                                       forced-entry operations.37 Troops ashore are at
bility to provide troops ashore with accurate, re-                                       very high risk without tactically responsive NSFS
liable, tactically responsive, high-volume NSFS—                                         and the “situation will continue until the DD 21-
under all conditions. Without it, our troops ashore                                      class destroyers join the fleet in strength [circa
risk needless casualties, being defeated or both.                                        2020].” 38 Integrating the services’ warfighting
                                                                                         capabilities achieves a synergy for 21st-century lit-
OneSolution:NationalAssets                                                               toral warfare, but synergy will not be achieved
  The idea of making Iowa-class battleships joint                                        without the major-caliber guns from the Navy’s
assets as part of a JTF commander’s “go-to-war                                           Iowa-class battleships.
    1. Interview with a US Joint Forces Command targeting expert, 9 April 2001.             18. GAO/NSIAD-97-179R.
    2. General Accounting Office (GAO)/National Security and International Affairs Di-      19. Letter to Honorable John Warner, Chairman, Committee on Armed Services,
vision (NSIAD)-97-179R, Naval Surface Fire Support (Washington, DC: US Govern-           The Honorable Richard Danzig, Secretary of the Navy, Navy’s Report to Congress
ment Printing Office [GPO], 6 August 1997), 1, <       on Naval Surface Fire Support Capabilities, 26 March 1999, 3.
gao1.htm>.                                                                                  20. Colonel James E. Lasswell, USMC, Retired, “Waterborne Warriors,” Armed
    3. US Army Field Manual (FM) 100-15, Corps Operations (Washington, DC: GPO,          Forces Journal International (AFJI), January 2001, 36-41.
29 October 1996), 1-1, <>.            21. Ibid.
    4. DOD Directive 5100.1, Functions of the Department of Defense and its Major           22. Tracy A. Ralphs, “Where Are the Battleships,” AFJI, April 1999, 46.
Components (Washington, DC: GPO, 25 September 1987), 17, <http://web7.whs.osd.              23. Ibid.
mil/pdf/d51001p.pdf>.                                                                       24. GAO/NSIAD-97-179R, 2.
    5. Ibid.                                                                                25. “An Interview With Lieutenant General Paul K. Van Riper, Commanding General,
    6. C. Mark Brinkley, “Punching Up 911: A Brand-New Vision for Tomorrow’s Ma-         Marine Corps Combat Development Center,” Surface Warfare, May/June 1996, 30.
rine Corps,” Marine Corps Times, 4 December 2000, 14.                                       26. Ibid.
    7. Banner, Army Times, 6 December 1999, cover page.                                     27. John G. Roos, “Ersatz Silver Bullets: US High-Tech Missiles Remain Vul-
    8. “Excerpts of Q&A From Jones Confirmation Hearing: Senate Armed Services           nerable to Low-Tech Jamming,” AFJI, April 2000, 36-40.
Committee Confirmation Hearing, 8 June 1999, Advanced Questions for the Record,”            28. Lasswell, 40.
Inside the Navy, 14 June 1999, 9.                                                           29. “Marine Corps NSFS Letter to Navy,” 10.
    9. DCSOPS, Power Projection Council of Colonels, 15 October 1999, slide 4.              30. David Brown, “Will Delaying New Destroyers Risk Marines? Senators Ask,”
   10. Memorandum, Commanding General, MCCDC, to Chief of Naval Operations               Navy Times, 4 April 2000.
(N86 and N85), “Subject: Naval Surface Fire Support for Operational Maneuver                31. Letter to Dr. William Stearman from the MCCDC, Warfighting Development
From the Sea,” 5.                                                                        Integration Division, Quantico, Virginia, 27 August 1996, 3.
   11. “Marine Corps NSFS Letter to Navy,” Inside the Navy, 28 June 1999, 10.               32. American Legion, March 1996.
   12. General Barry R. McCaffrey, “Return Fire: We Ignore the Lessons of the Last          33. Samuel E. Morison, “History of United States Naval Operations in World War
30 Years at Our Peril,” Armed Forces Journal International, August 2000, 15.             II,” The Invasion of France and Germany, 1944-1945 (Volume XI) (Boston, MA: Little,
   13. Army Readiness and Training Evaluation Program (ARTEP) 6-037-30, Mis-             Brown and Co., 1957), 169.
sion Training Plan for the Consolidated Cannon Battery (Washington, DC: GPO, 1              34. Appendix to explanation of Japanese Defense Plan and Battle of Iwo Jima, Major
April 2000), appendix A, table A-7.1                                                     Yoshitaka Horie (ex-staff officer to General Kuribayashi), 25 January 1946 (courtesy
   14. Interview with Lieutenant Colonel Mike Janay, USMC, Retired, 1 August 2000.       Ms. Mullen, Research Archives, USMC University, Quantico, VA).
   15. Patrecia Slayden Hollis, “Joint Integration: The Key to Combat Effectiveness:        35. Sovetskaya Rossiya, 19 February 1991.
(Interview with) General Anthony C. Zinni, USMC, CINC, US Central Command,”                 36. Tracy A. Ralphs, “Joint Warfare Will Fail Without Joint Weapon Foundation,”
Field Artillery, November/December 1998, 7.                                              Defense News, 19-25 October 1998, 29.
   16. Ibid.                                                                                37. Senate Armed Services Committee Report (S.1026), 8 July 1995.
   17. Hunter Keeter, “Jones Sets Priorities for Air-, Land- and Sea-Based Fire Sup-        38. “Statement of General James L. Jones, Commandant of the Marine Corps,” Be-
port,” Defense Daily, 8 January 2000, 5.                                                 fore the House Armed Services Committee Concerning Posture, 1 March 2000, 17.

                            Major Tracy A. Ralphs is an imagery and intelligence officer, US Army Military Traffic Management
                         Command Transportation Engineering Agency, Newport News, Virginia. He received a B.S. from the Uni-
                         versity of Alabama and is a graduate of the US Army Command and General Staff College. As a US Army
                         Reserve officer, he is the operations and training officer, Army Element, Joint Forces Intelligence Command
                         Reserve Unit, Norfolk, Virginia. He has also served as an observer/controller, National Training Center,
                         Fort Irwin, California, and as an imagery analyst, National Ground Intelligence Center, Charlottesville,
                         Virginia. He is the deputy executive director and program director, US Naval Fire Support Association.

64                                                                                                                   July-August 2001         l   MILITARY REVIEW
  Your first act against the enemy shouldn’t
be a nibble! It should demonstrate determi-              Maneuver and firepower
nation and have traumatic impact!                        should not be considered separate
                                  — Sir John Woodward1   operations against a common foe but

                                                         complementary. Firepower resources
     OINT FIREPOWER synchronized with                    establish a mobility advantage over the
      operational-level maneuver bites with formi-       enemy and ease operational maneuver.
dable force and terrorizes the enemy. Precise, brisk,    Generally this refers to several tasks:
devastating operational firepower has been around        attacking deep force concentrations,
only since World War II, and its place in major op-      blinding sensors, disrupting mobility
erations and campaigns is no less important to-          and preparing the enemy for
day than at Normandy. Firepower is a fundamental         decisive closure.
tool of the operational artist, and every campaign
planner needs a sense of how such devastating            gic aims of the conflict and that firepower alone
power can be most effective.                             could not be decisive without a more integrated
   Following the smoothbore age, military opera-         and compelling link to the entire campaign design.
tions changed course, and open warfare resolved in-      Overwhelming firepower may influence success
to close encounters around fixed points. While ma-       in engagements and battles, but to achieve national
neuver was prominent during three of the four years      security objectives, overall campaigns must be
of the American Civil War, the fourth was largely        successful.3
spent in siege operations. The Franco-Prussian War          The lack of integrated firepower and maneuver
began with six weeks of maneuver, followed by a          at the operational level during World War I com-
five-month siege on Paris. The Russo-Turkish War         pels us to look to World War II for examples of such
of 1877 was basically a single-siege operation, and      integration. First the Germans, then the Allies,
the Russo-Japanese War of 1904-05 closed with            learned to integrate firepower with operational ma-
600,000 men consumed in trench warfare.                  neuver to execute broad-scope, decisive campaigns
   Because of this attrition form of warfare, military   across Africa, Europe and Russia. They quickly
leaders concluded that heavier firepower was             found that operational art is more than planning and
needed. In 1916 during the battle of Verdun, the         executing tactics on a grand scale. It is designing
Germans heaped two million rounds on French po-          and controlling sequential, simultaneous operations
sitions at the rate of 100,000 rounds an hour. While     across a theater that gives direction and meaning to
these are impressive figures and the magnitude of        the tactical level. In this context operational fire-
the barrages must have been awe-inspiring, fire-         power also becomes more than just fire support. It
power alone did not achieve an operational decision      is not driven by targeting at the lowest tactical lev-
in the precursor events to World War I, nor did it       els and compiled into target sets to support coming
during the devastating years of the war itself.2         engagements. Operational firepower is compelled by
   Actions during World War I repeatedly demon-          the overall campaign design and thus the operational-
strated that a single battle was no longer sufficient    level tasks and priorities that must be accomplished
to achieve victory—or—perhaps any of the strate-         within each phase of the campaign.4

MILITARY REVIEW   l   July-August 2001                                                                      65
                                                           ditions for maneuver. Through disruption, delay or
                 Operational firepower, while              by limiting critical functions, firepower can dictate
         a separate element of the concept of              the terms of future battle.7
      operations, must closely integrate and                  Balancing competing “close” and “deep” de-
     synchronize with the CINC’s concept of                mands is a critical aspect of operational command.
           maneuver. At the operational level,             Modern operational-level warfare involves meeting
      firepower is defined in terms of what it             the enemy along the front while destroying forces
                   does rather than what it is.            well into enemy rear areas.8 Since World War I, le-
                                                           thal firepower has been a primary option in meet-
                                                           ing warfare’s many demands. Attrition has often
Firepower                                                  been a priority requirement, but it should not domi-
   The term “operational firepower” refers to a com-       nate the design of a well-orchestrated campaign.
mander in chief’s (CINC’s) application of fires to            Firepower is often associated with attrition, which
achieve a decisive impact on the conduct of a cam-         depends on industrial strength, cumulative effects
paign or major operation. Operational firepower,           and destroying target arrays. Overusing this method
while a separate element of the concept of opera-          leads to routine target acquisition and repetitive rep-
tions, must closely integrate and synchronize with         ertoires to support a preponderance of firepower.
the CINC’s concept of maneuver. At the operational         While firepower is an effective means of war, it is
level, firepower is defined in terms of what it does       neither self-sufficient nor a swift instrument of vic-
rather than what it is. It does not necessarily directly   tory. The Vietnam experience affirms this truth: as
equate to attrition warfare and, of necessity, plays       firepower and attrition dominate operational design,
a critical role in maneuver warfare.5                      maneuver seems less important; yet, without it, a
   Operational maneuver and fires may occur simul-         decision is improbable.9
taneously within a commander’s battle space, at
times for different but related objectives, and at other   OperationalManeuver
times maneuver and fires must be synchronized.                Decisively defeating an enemy force requires
Lethal operational firepower is not simply fire sup-       dominant maneuver throughout the depth of the
port writ large. It is consciously targeting and attack-   battle space. Dominance requires seeing activity in
ing targets whose destruction will significantly af-       the battle space, moving rapidly through its depth
fect the campaign or major operation. It includes          and directing firepower to dominate the maneuver
allocating joint and combined air, land, sea and           relationship. Final dominance comes through simul-
space means. Based on the operational commander’s          taneously applying firepower and controlling ter-
vision of how the campaign will unfold, operational        rain.10
fire objectives are established, and targets are des-         Relational maneuver creates a decisive impact on
ignated and integrated.6                                   a campaign by securing operational advantages be-
   Operational firepower performs three general            fore battle or exploiting tactical success. By avoid-
tasks within the campaign:                                 ing enemy strengths, relational maneuver attempts
   l Isolates the battlefield by interdiction.             to incapacitate through systematic disruption rather
   l Destroys critical enemy functions and facili-         than physical destruction. The potential advantages
ties, eliminating or substantially degrading enemy         are disproportionate to the effort and resources in-
operational-level capabilities.                            volved. Facilitating maneuver with firepower can
   l Facilitates operational maneuver by suppress-         yield astounding results such as Operation Neptune
ing enemy fires, disrupting maneuver and creating          to establish the Normandy lodgment or Operation
gaps in defenses.                                          Cobra to break out of the lodgment.11
   Operational fires help achieve operational and             How does a planner design a campaign to facili-
perhaps strategic objectives while holding enemy           tate maneuver? Many operational-level planners are
critical functions at risk throughout the depth of the     perplexed by this notion and often rely on their more
battle space. They are more than deep fires because        familiar experiences with fire support. To better
they extend the battlefield in space and time. Exist-      understand the maneuver-firepower connection re-
ing capabilities permit acquisition and attack at in-      quires a fundamental grasp of maneuver forms and
creasing ranges and faster response times than ever        historical uses of firepower.
before. Operational firepower can expose or allow             At the operational level there are two basic forms
attacks directly on the center of gravity and set con-     of maneuver that support sustained land action: cen-

66                                                                           July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
US Army
                                                                                      Alert GIs of an M-51 quad-.50 caliber
                                                                                      battery watch as US and German
                                                                                      planes dogfight above them.

          Because envelopments and turns are similar, the general character
          of operational firepower that facilitates such maneuvers would take on similar
          patterns. In fact, many patterns are similar to those required in central maneuvers
          with one notable exception—protecting a flank. The US XIX TAC supporting
          General George S. Patton’s Third Army during mid-August 1944 demonstrated
          how to protect an operational flank using firepower.

          tral maneuver using penetration, frontal attack and   directly through the mass of combat power.14
          infiltration; and flanking maneuver using envelop-       Flanking maneuvers are designed to fall on an
          ment or turning movement. World War II illustrates    assailable flank, creating the conditions for encircle-
          how each form has been applied and how firepower      ment or pursuit and forcing the enemy to abandon
          facilitated success. For example, Operation Neptune   prepared defenses or fight in a direction and on ter-
          demonstrated a frontal attack, Operation Cobra a      rain we choose. Preferably, such maneuvers would
          penetration and Operation Bluecoat an envelop-        come from an unexpected direction, and while en-
          ment.12 The more clearly defined use of a turning     velopments seek to fix enemy frontal defenses, a
          movement might be demonstrated by General Dou-        turn avoids these altogether.15
          glas MacArthur’s avoidance of Rabaul. Finally,           Maneuver and firepower should not be consid-
          British Field Marshal William Slim’s use of the       ered separate operations against a common foe but
          Chindits in Burma illustrates an operational-level    complementary. Firepower resources establish a
          infiltration.13                                       mobility advantage over the enemy and ease opera-
             Central maneuvers are designed to rupture enemy    tional maneuver. Generally this refers to several
          defenses, create assailable flanks and access rear    tasks: attacking deep force concentrations, blinding
          areas. Infiltrations covertly move forces through     sensors, disrupting mobility and preparing the en-
          enemy lines to reconcentrate in rear areas, whereas   emy for decisive closure. But, as in synchronizing
          penetrations on a narrow front or frontal attacks     any operational functions, there is more to consider
          on a broad front seek to overwhelm the enemy          than this simple list implies, and each form of

          MILITARY REVIEW   l   July-August 2001                                                                       67
                                                          porting bomber attack dropping 800 explosive tons.
          While firepower is an effective                 In the British sector, from 0300 to 0500 hours, more
 means of war, it is neither self-sufficient              than 1,000 aircraft concentrated 5,000 tons of bombs
  nor a swift instrument of victory. The                  on German defenses.18
Vietnam experience affirms this truth:                       During all of this there was a major effort to sup-
   as firepower and attrition dominate                    port deception as part of Operation Fortitude. In
 operational design, maneuver seems                       preliminary action to isolate reserves and debilitate
       less important; yet, without it, a                 German mobility, 10 percent of the bomb tonnage
                decision is improbable.                   dropped from mid-April until D-day was directed
                                                          against coastal batteries, but only one-third of that
maneuver requires its own set of considerations. Past     tonnage was dropped in the invasion area.19
illustrations will help, but they reflect the enemy,         Almost two months later Operation Cobra, de-
terrain and available resources.                          signed to break out of the lodgment area, illustrated
                                                          the meaning of tearing gaps in enemy defenses. The
CentralManeuver                                           First US Army was poised to break out of the lodg-
   Frontal assaults and penetrations require facilitat-   ment with 15 divisions in four corps. Behind it were
ing similar methods. The official US Army history         12 fighter-bomber groups based on the continent
of the cross-channel attack records that the “task of     to support its effort. During his planning phase,
smashing through enemy beach defenses was to be           General Omar Bradley said he wanted to “obliter-
facilitated as far as possible by naval fire and air      ate the German defenses along the Périers Saint-
bombardment.” The Atlantic wall was expected to           Lo highway” and use an “air attack concentrated
contain 15,000 concrete strong points, 15 coastal         in mass” into the open terrain beyond Saint-Lo
batteries and 300,000 defenders. A frontal assault        highway.20
against such defenses required heavily suppressing           All Eighth US Air Force heavy bombers and
enemy fire, tearing gaps in the imposing defenses,        fighters, Ninth US Air Force medium bombers and
isolating enemy reserves from the lodgment area,          fighter-bombers, and the Royal Air Force 2d Tacti-
destroying German mobility and supporting the de-         cal Air Force concentrated against a rectangular tar-
ception (Operation Fortitude).16                          get south of the Périers-Saint-Lo highway. The tar-
   For three months lines of communication (LOC)          get was 7,000 yards wide and 2,500 yards deep. For
in northern France were interdicted to sever trans-       two hours and 25 minutes, 2,500 planes swarmed
portation links to Normandy. Between 1 March and          over the target, dropping 5,000 tons of explosives,
6 June 1944 air forces cut rail traffic by 60 percent,    napalm and white phosphorous. From 25 to 28 July,
destroying 900 locomotives, 16,000 freight cars and       2,926 aircraft flew almost 10,000 sorties support-
shooting down 1,000 Luftwaffe aircraft in May alone.      ing the First US Army operational objective. Lieu-
All Seine River bridges from Rouen to Mantes-             tenant General Fritz Bayerlein, commander of
Gassicourt were rendered impassable. An area the          Panzer Lehr division, was astonished by the destruc-
size of Indiana was isolated in the northwest corner      tion and characterized the onslaught as “Hell. . . .
of France. German reserves were so successfully           The planes kept coming . . . my front lines looked
isolated that they had to walk the last 100 miles into    like a landscape on the moon, and at least 70 percent
combat. German reserves were isolated from the            of my personnel were knocked out of action. . . . All
lodgment area, the supporting mobility network            my front-line tanks were knocked out. . . . We could
was neutralized, and the Luftwaffe had only 400           do nothing but retreat. A new SS tank battalion was
first-line aircraft operational. The stage had been       coming in with 60 tanks . . . [it] arrived [with] five.”
masterfully set for the invasion along the Normandy       The destruction was so complete in the target area
coastline.17                                              that it prompted discouraged Field Marshal Hans
   As Operation Neptune began, the tasks of sup-          Guenther von Kluge to report, “As of this moment,
pressing defenses and tearing selected gaps became        the front has burst.” Operational firepower facili-
primary concerns. The combined naval forces dedi-         tated First US Army’s penetration three miles wide
cated scores of ships to this effort. Fifty-two battle-   and one to three miles deep and precipitated the
ships, cruisers, destroyers and other ships supported     defeat of the German 7th Army.21
the First US Army in the US sector. On 6 June                Operational-level infiltrations are somewhat
Omaha and Utah Beaches were bombarded with                unique in history; however, operations in Burma by
naval gunfire, including 13,000 rockets, and a sup-       Brigadier Orde Wingate’s special force of Chindits

68                                                                          July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
Bombs from Fifth Air
Force B-25s straddle
a Japanese patrol
boat from a convoy
headed for Rabaul,
16 February 1944. In
the background (see
inset) a cargo vessel
receives a fatal hit
while only the bow
remains visible of
another ship heading
for the bottom. The
convoy was caught
off Kavieng, New

US Air Force

On 12 October 1943, 350 aircraft from the US Fifth Air Force and the
Royal Australian Air Force began concentrating operational-level fires against [the
100,000-man garrison at] Rabaul. . . . The attempt to isolate Rabaul was continuous,
and by February 1944 no Japanese warships remained at Rabaul, and no
fighters opposed Allied air efforts within hundreds of miles.

exemplify how firepower might support such an          infiltration into an operational area formed by the
effort. Slim, having retreated from Burma during       Mogaung-Indaw-Bhamo triangle. A determined
1941, found himself in an economy-of-force theater     Wingate had achieved one of the greatest infiltra-
throughout World War II. As he began to transition     tions in history “to insert himself in the guts of the
to a theater offensive against Japan’s 15th Imperial   enemy.”23
Army in 1944, the security of his northern flank          For months the Chindits, dispersing and recon-
became a major concern. Slim’s objective was to        centrating behind enemy lines in classic infiltration
secure his northern flank and prevent Japan from       style, accomplished their objectives and prevented
reinforcing its 15th Imperial Army. He used the        Japanese use of interior lines against Slim’s main
Chindits to cut the LOC of enemy forces facing US      offensive effort. Operation Thursday and follow-on
General Joseph Stilwell on the northern front.22       operations were among the largest and most suc-
   Operation Thursday began on 5 March 1944.           cessful infiltrations in history. Firepower facilitated
Wingate’s force was to cut the Japanese LOC, pre-      this maneuver by isolating the operational area, sup-
vent reinforcement of the northern front, deny Japa-   pressing Japanese firepower, supporting deception
nese use of the main rivers and cause the greatest     to cover the infiltration and destroying Japanese
possible confusion and damage. During March,           command and control capabilities.
9,000 men and 1,350 pack mules and cattle of the          Britain’s Number 1 Air Commando and 3d Tac-
British 77th and 111th Brigades were airlanded 200     tical Air Force received the first priority of estab-
miles within Japanese-held territory. Another 3,000    lishing and maintaining local air superiority over the
16th Brigade troops marched 450 miles across           operational area. This force destroyed all Japanese
Burma’s Naga Hills in six weeks to join the initial    air forces that could influence Chindit operations.

MILITARY REVIEW         l   July-August 2001                                                               69
                                                          southern wing of the invasion force.26
            Between 1 March and 6 June                       Brigadier General O.P. Weyland’s XIX TAC had
   1944 air forces cut rail traffic by 60 per-            full responsibility for protecting the extensive and
cent, destroying 900 locomotives, 16,000                  vulnerable southern flank along the Loire valley “to
  freight cars and shooting down 1,000                    keep the Germans . . . immobile and off balance,
Luftwaffe aircraft in May alone. All Seine                and prevent any massing of enemy strength to op-
     River bridges from Rouen to Mantes-                  pose the Third Army.”27 XIX TAC constantly pa-
 Gassicourt were rendered impassable.                     trolled the Loire valley, attacking every target related
An area the size of Indiana was isolated                  to protecting the southern wing. On 8 September the
        in the northwest corner of France.                German commander of Biarritz, Brigadier General
                                                          Botho Elster, agreed to surrender 20,000 troops at
US Strategic Air Force strikes along the Southern         the Beaugencys bridge in Orleans under one con-
Front caused the Japanese to believe Lower Burma          dition: “Keep the ‘Jabo’ [fighter-bombers] off my
was about to be invaded from India. Consequently,         men.” During this period large numbers of enemy
Japanese reserves were not free to oppose Chindits        troops attempted to surrender to low-flying aircraft
on the Northern Front. Approximately 750 tons of          for the first time in history. Patton, in his direct
munitions were delivered to facilitate infiltration of    style, wrote a compliment to General Henry (Hap)
the Japanese 15th Army. Antiaircraft firetraps were       Arnold, dated 17 August, which read, “For 250
also used against Japanese air forces. Allied air         miles I have seen the calling cards of [XIX TAC]
forces would lure the Japanese into these networks        fighter-bombers, which are bullet marks in the
to increase attrition and prevent interference with       pavement and burned tanks and trucks in the
the infiltration operations.24                            ditches.”28
                                                             Protection of the operational area’s right wing and
FlankingManeuver                                          Patton’s Third Army illustrates the synergistic ef-
   Because envelopments and turns are similar, the        fects of orchestrated maneuver and firepower—and
general character of operational firepower that fa-       the dilemma facing any foe under such circum-
cilitates such maneuvers would take on similar pat-       stances. Firepower afforded protection to Third
terns. In fact, many patterns are similar to those re-    Army’s flanking maneuver, which catalyzed Ger-
quired in central maneuvers with one notable              man countermoves into positions where lethal fire-
exception—protecting a flank. The US XIX Tacti-           power could concentrate against them.
cal Air Command (TAC) supporting General                     MacArthur’s turn of Rabaul illustrates equally
George S. Patton’s Third Army during mid-August           well operational fires protecting one’s flank. After
1944 demonstrated how to protect an operational           the Battle of Coral Sea in May 1942, Japanese pen-
flank using firepower. According to planners,             etration toward Australia and LOC into the South-
“Never in military history had a ground commander         west Pacific region was disrupted, but Rabaul still
entrusted the defense of a flank to tactical aircraft.”   dominated the region. From this major naval and air
The rapid maneuver during Patton’s exploitation           base, the Japanese could continue to threaten the
toward the Seine River line and Paris called for spe-     LOC to Australia and New Zealand and dominate
cial emphasis ahead of the advance and especially         the right flank of any regional operations. Allied
along the vulnerable Loire valley flank.25                forces were held to the Bismarck barrier, where the
   When the original envelopment to close the             Japanese effectively waged attrition warfare to
Argentan pocket was not successful, Bradley autho-        dominate the approaches to Rabaul and contain Al-
rized execution of Operation Lucky Strike’s plan B,       lied forces.
a wider envelopment to encircle German forces                After one year of campaigning, Allied forces had
south of the Seine River. Patton’s Third Army ad-         advanced less than 200 miles in the Southwest Pa-
vanced to the Seine along three avenues, which took       cific. At that rate it would have taken 15 years to
three corps to the Dreux-Chartres-Orleans line by         reach Japan. An approach through the Central Pa-
18 August. The Seine River line was forced 35 miles       cific looked more inviting as the Japanese began
south of Paris within a week. Third Army made             reinforcing Rabaul, eventually assembling 100,000
rapid progress in this effort while protecting 12th       well-armed men.29
Army Group’s flank along the Loire River. Beyond              Allied gains in the Bougainville area during Oc-
this protection was the XIX TAC, whose mission            tober and November 1943 caused the Japanese to
was to protect Third Army and thereby the entire          further concentrate naval and air forces at Rabaul.

70                                                                          July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW

Although Rabaul had been a main objective during                                 was left isolated, bypassed and contained by Aus-
the early stages of the Southwest Pacific campaign,                              tralian forces in an economy-of-force effort as Al-
it was quickly building beyond Allied capabilities                               lied forces went westward to Wewak and ultimately
to attack and capture it. Yet, the Allies had to con-                            the Philippines. Their right flank had been secured
tain forces based there. MacArthur decided to iso-                               by prudently using operational fires to facilitate the
late and bypass Rabaul and the Japanese Seven-                                   turning movement that avoided Rabaul’s imposing
teenth Army in the Solomons. A new plan emerged,                                 defenses.31
which called for Allied forces to advance along the                                 Interdicting rear and deep areas of the battle space
New Guinea coast to the Vogelkop Peninsula in                                    is nothing new. It is not warfare’s medium (air, sea
1944 with Mindanao as the subsequent objective.30                                or land) that makes the difference but the opposing
   On 12 October 1943, 350 aircraft from the US                                  forces’ relative mobility and the operational tempo.
Fifth Air Force and the Royal Australian Air Force                               The greater the mobility, the less consequential the
began concentrating operational-level fires against                              locations of the opposing forces. Facilitating man-
Rabaul. From October through December 1943 air                                   euver’s mobility and tempo using firepower takes
and naval forces pummeled Rabaul. The attempt                                    on meaning well beyond attrition alone.
to isolate Rabaul was continuous, and by Febru-                                     Maneuver and firepower have rarely stood alone
ary 1944 no Japanese warships remained at Rabaul,                                as decisive in and of themselves; they are inseparable
and no fighters opposed Allied air efforts within                                and complementary. While one might dominate a
hundreds of miles. By the end of 1943 the Japanese                               particular phase of a campaign, the most beneficial
had lost 3,000 aircraft in the struggle for the                                  effects derive from integrating operational-level
Solomons, one of which carried Admiral Isoroku                                   maneuver and firepower relative to the enemy cen-
Yamamoto, the regional commander and one of the                                  ter of gravity. When maneuver and firepower are
original architects of Japanese naval power and the                              synergistically orchestrated to disrupt the supporting
Pearl Harbor attack. His death alone was a serious                               structure, unbalance command decisions and impose
loss to the Japanese. In their attempt to reinforce                              chaotic disorganization, disproportionate success is
Rabaul, the Japanese had fallen prey to devastating                              possible. Focusing on maneuver or firepower with-
firepower. A well-trained and well-equipped army                                 out the other misses the point altogether.32

   1. Admiral Sir John Woodward concerning the preparation and design of the       16. Gordon A. Harrison, US Army in World War II: European Theater of Op-
Falklands campaign in 1982.                                                      erations: Cross-Channel Attack (Washington, DC: Office of the CMH, 1951), 137
   2. John Keegan, The Mask of Command (New York: Penquin Books, 1988), 247.     and 193.
   3. Strategic Studies Institute, The Operational Art of Warfare Across the       17. Omar N. Bradley, A Soldier’s Story (Chicago, IL: Rand McNally, 1951), 245
Spectrum of Conflict (Carlisle Barracks, PA: US Army War College, 1 February     and 279; Harrison, 228-30.
1987), 37.                                                                         18. Bradley, 255; Carlo D’Este, Decision in Normandy (New York: Harper Collins
   4. Charles O. Hammond, “Operational Fires and Unity of Command,” (Fort        Publishers Inc., 1983), 112 and 194.
Leavenworth, KS: US Army Command and General Staff College, School of Ad-          19. D’Este, 194.
vanced Military Studies, 30 April 1990), 1.                                        20. Martin Blumenson, US Army in World War II: The European Theater of
   5. US Army Field Manual (FM) 100-7, Decisive Force: The Army in Theater       Operations: Breakout and Pursuit (Washington, DC: CMH, 1984), 207-40.
Operations (Washington, DC: US Government Printing Office [GPO], 31 May            21. Ibid., 221-40 and 333; D’Este, 402.
1995), 5-9; Ralph G. Reece, Operational Fires (Maxwell Air Force Base, AL: Air     22. Viscount Slim, Defeat into Victory (London: Papermac, Macmillan Publish-
War College, May 1989), 2-5.                                                     ers Limited, 1986), 251-59; Micheal Calvert, Chindits — Long Range Penetration
   6. Ibid.                                                                      (New York: Ballantine Books Inc., 1973), 21.
   7. FM 100-7, 5-16 and 5-21.                                                     23. Slim, 66-67 and 77; Calvert, 63; Frank Owen, Central Office of Information,
   8. James Blackwell, Michael J. Mazarr and Don M. Snider, Center for Strate-   The Campaign in Burma (London: His Majesty’s Stationary Office, 1946), 66-7.
gic and International Studies (CSIS), The Gulf War — Military Lessons Learned      24. Calvert, 81; Owen, 66-9.
(Washington, DC: CSIS, July 1991), 17.                                             25. O.P. Weyland, “Tactical Air Operations in Europe,” Headquarters (Advanced)
   9. Edward N. Luttwak, The Logic of War and Peace (Cambridge, MA: The          XIX Tactical Air Command, 19 May 1945, 14 and 48.
Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 1987), 92 and 167.                      26. Bradley, 379; Blumenson, 567; D’Este, 412-13.
  10. Secretary of the Army Togo D. West Jr. and Chief of Staff, US Army, Gen-     27. Weyland, 49.
eral Gordon R. Sullivan, Decisive Victory–America’s Power Projection Army, A       28. Ibid.; Martin Blumenson, The Patton Papers, 1940-1945 (Boston, MA:
White Paper, Headquarters, Department of the Army, Washington DC, October        Houghton Mifflin Co., 1974), 516; Army Air Force, Wings at War, No. 5, Air-Ground
1994, 18.                                                                        Teamwork on the Western Front (Washington, DC: Headquarters, Army Air Forces,
  11. Ibid., 93-108.                                                             1945), 2.
  12. Operation Bluecoat was a British operation from Caumont, France, to get      29. Edward Miller, War Plan Orange: The US Strategy to Defeat Japan, 1897-
behind German forces trying to swing west to face the Americans. Martin          1945 (Annapolis, MD: Naval Institute Press, 1991).
Blumenson, Breakout and Pursuit (Washington, DC: Office of the Chief, Center       30. Vincent Esposito, The West Point Atlas of American Wars, Volume II, 1900-
of Military History [CMH], 1961), 289.                                           1953 (New York, Washington and London: Praeger Publishers, 1959), 290-95.
  13. FM 100-5, Operations (Washington, DC: GPO, June 1993), 7-11 and 7-12.        31. Ibid.; R. Ernest and Trevor N. Dupuy, The Encyclopedia of Military History
  14. Ibid.                                                                      From 3500 B.C. to the Present (New York: Harper and Row, 1986), 1161-62.
  15. Ibid.                                                                        32. Luttwak, 108, 158-67.

                             Colonel Lamar Tooke, US Army, Retired, is lead instructor, Virginia Community
                          Policing Institute, Richmond, Virginia. He received an M.A. from Webster University
                          and is a graduate of the US Army Command and General Staff College. He has served
                          in various command and staff positions in the Continental United States, Vietnam and
                          Germany. He served as a faculty member at the US Army War College and as director
                          of Joint and Combined Theater Warfare within the corresponding studies program,
                          Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania. He has contributed several articles to Military
                          Review on the subject of operational art.

MILITARY REVIEW            l   July-August 2001                                                                                                               71
     WO ALLIED military forces operating in the
T      Balkans in adjacent zones are similarly
equipped, trained and led. The communities, factions
                                                                  Numerous references in official
                                                           reports support a popular military view that
and problems they face are the same. They speak          policy differences among coalition members will
the same language and come from a common mili-            be exploited in peace operations to manipulate
tary cultural heritage. They have been allies in war       public sentiment against a specific force.
and peace and are members of NATO where they             Further, a 1996 IDA study indicates that those
champion the same military positions; they support         dealing directly with the disputants and civil
the same NATO doctrine for peace support opera-           population in Bosnia saw policy variations
tions. Their national written force-protection doc-           among sectors as counterproductive.
trines are nearly the same, and despite disagree-
ments, they are staunch political allies.1 Yet, when
patrolling Balkan streets, US and British soldiers       ties. Commanders have historically planned, ad-
present radically different public images.               justed, retreated, regrouped and advanced with new
   US troops wear helmets and body armor—hence           strategies to win at the lowest cost. Both US and
their nickname, “ninja turtles.” They travel in con-     British generals are concerned about casualties, and
voys with guns manned and ready. When they stop,         they adjust strategy to minimize them but not at the
they disperse to overwatch positions, ready to ap-       expense of the mission. Why do these generals with
ply defensive force. At night most retire to fortified   very similar doctrine differ in their policies?
camps or outposts as Romans did on campaigns, cut           Numerous references in official reports support
off from the people they came to protect.                a popular military view that policy differences
   British troops wear berets and walk and talk          among coalition members will be exploited in peace
with the locals. They travel in small groups, armed      operations to manipulate public sentiment against a
but with weapons slung. Some wear ammunition             specific force.3 Further, a 1996 Institute for Defense
pouches; some do not; none wears body armor un-          Analyses (IDA) study indicates that those dealing
less there is an imminent threat. Off duty they eat      directly with the disputants and civil population in
and relax in town; many live there. Single vehicles      Bosnia saw policy variations among sectors as coun-
often travel the roads, identifiable only by their       terproductive.4
painted military patterns.                                  But, the implications go deeper. Force-protection
   Each nation participating in the implementation       policy can affect unity of effort, an imperative in
force (IFOR), stabilization force (SFOR) and Ko-         military coalitions. Differences may also affect other
sovo peacekeeping force (KFOR) has adopted force-        aspects of a coalition, such as orders to open fire or
protection policies based on national doctrine. The      induce confusion among the civil population, which
British posture represents most nations’ approach;       could lead to serious incidents. In a highly charged
the US posture is the exception.2 Although popular       political environment, policy differences can under-
attitudes and political direction influence policy       mine a coalition’s mission.
makers, force-protection policy for an operation is         Senior military leaders are directly influenced by
based on rational calculations of interest, efficacy     orders from above and results from below. They are
and acceptable cost.                                     indirectly influenced by other factors such as doc-
   Neither British nor US doctrine implies zero-         trine, experience, history and resources. Although
casualty tolerance or places force protection above      they receive their orders from civilian leaders who
mission accomplishment. Both restate the traditional     represent society, society’s mood may also influence
military responsibility to win with minimal casual-      them. Presumably, the British, with their routinely

MILITARY REVIEW   l   July-August 2001                                                                      73
less-protective uniform, posture and procedures, and       differ, but clearly senior military leaders are ex-
claims of mission command, would show greater              pected to do no more than their best to accomplish
tolerance for risk. US policy, because it is dictated or   the mission with the prudent care and diligence that
influenced from above, should show the opposite.           has always been required of democratic militaries.
                                                           Leaders have not been subject to orders or overt
BritishCivilianLeadersandParliament                        pressure to have no casualties.
   The Prime Minister’s Questions in the House of
Commons and parliamentary debates over Bosnia              USCivilianLeadersandCongress
and Kosovo do not indicate a philosophy of casu-              As with the British, there is no overt evidence
alty aversion. The prime minister was an early and         that the US force-protection policy was a reaction
vocal supporter of maintaining a credible ground           to political or social pressure. General George
war option for Kosovo. There was a sober recogni-          A. Joulwan was supreme allied commander of
tion of the personal and political effects of casual-      NATO forces and the senior US officer in Europe
ties but nothing indicating hesitation on these            when US forces crossed the Sava River into Bosnia-
grounds. The debates seemed to concern the level           Herzegovina as part of IFOR.9 He framed the force-
of British interests, the ability to field the required    protection policy that has served, with modification,
force and civilian casualties in the war zone more         in Kosovo ever since. During planning for the op-
than potential British military casualties. In fact, the   eration, he personally advised the president and sec-
subject of British military casualties occurs infre-       retary of defense that casualties were a risk that
quently and then only as a derivative rather than a        could not be eliminated. Joulwan stated in an inter-
primary topic.5                                            view that politicians never directed or implied that
   The same is true of the public. Two major news-         he and his chain of command avoid casualties at the
papers, The London Times and The Daily Telegraph,          expense of the mission. Nor was he given to believe
reported concern over legalities, national interests       that the success of the mission depended on a few
and military casualties. However, as in Parliament,        or no casualties.10 Joulwan’s successors had simi-
public support or criticism hinged on issues other         lar experiences. One of them, speaking off the record
than the likelihood of military casualties.6 British       to a military audience, stated that he felt no pressure
                                                           from political leaders to pursue a zero-casualty
    Many commentators seem to presume that                    In a 1998 speech President William J. Clinton
political guidance to limit casualties is improper.        stated, “We must, and we will, always do everything
  There is also a popular suspicion that senior            we can to protect our forces. We must and will al-
  military leaders have allowed an inference of            ways make their safety a top priority. . . . But we
zero-casualty tolerance to affect mission accom-           must be strong and tough and mature enough to rec-
 plishment. This leads to two questions: What is           ognize that even the best-prepared, best-equipped
   improper pressure? What would an action                 force will suffer losses in action.”11 The practical
      based on improper pressure look like?                expression of this view that Joulwan alluded to can
                                                           be seen in the comments of deputy Pentagon press
                                                           spokesman Admiral Craig Quigley when he told
casualties in the Balkans, and more recently in Si-        reporters, “Commanders have authority to raise and
erra Leone, received scant coverage. The tone was          lower threat conditions based on the local situa-
not critical, and the largest public and media reac-       tion.”12 If civilian leaders intended an unrealistic
tion was to favor a pension for the pregnant girl-         casualty-tolerance policy, commanders would not
friend of a soldier killed in Sierra Leone. This evi-      have any latitude.
dence complements the thoughts of Professor                   How should we interpret official statements that
Christopher Dandeker, head of the Military Stud-           call for minimizing casualties? The US National
ies Department at King’s College, London, who              Security Strategy states that humanitarian use of
stated, “British imperial history is a key dimension       military forces “will entail minimal risk to Ameri-
of our armed forces and UK civil-military relations.       can lives.”13 Former US Secretary of Defense Wil-
Small wars and operations at the interface between         liam Cohen publicly stated that force protection
war and peacekeeping (as in Sierra Leone recently)         was his number one priority when he sent troops
are part of British military culture. The public are       overseas.14 General Wesley Clark, commander of
used to this and used to expecting casualties.” 7          US forces in Europe during the Kosovo operation,
   The parliamentary record shows some evidence            said, “My highest priority for the US European
of casualty intolerance in British society, but it is      Command theater is antiterrorism and force protec-
oblique, rare and unconvincing.8 British opinions          tion.”15 These expressions are consistent with long-

74                                                                           July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
standing US military tradition, practice and doctrine     public’s calculus of operational merit, is not in and
to minimize casualties while accomplishing a mis-         of itself improper. Directing an operation without
sion. It is a leader’s inherent responsibility and has    being willing to risk casualties, however, inverts the
been the goal for equipping, training and preparing       mission-first-at-least-cost principle and constitutes
professional militaries. Along with the president’s       improper pressure.
public acceptance of risk and Joulwan’s statements,          Overt pressure has not been a factor in senior
these expressions cannot be taken as pressure for         military policy formulation but might have been in-
zero or unrealistically low casualties.                   ferred. The evidence commonly cited appears to
   The Congressional Record from December 1995
through November 2000 indicates significant dis-
cussion of casualties but always in the context of           Considering casualties, a central factor in
national interest. Most contention concerned the          the public’s calculus of operational merit, is not
president’s authority to commit military forces to        in and of itself improper. Directing an operation
hazardous situations without consulting Congress—         without being willing to risk casualties, however,
a reason many gave for not supporting the Kosovo           inverts the mission-first-at-least-cost principle
bombing. Risk to soldiers or aircraft did not play               and constitutes improper pressure.
prominently in debates outside the context of na-
tional interest. The Congressional Record signals
no intolerance of casualties, only that risk should       show this at first but is arguable, fragmentary, of
relate to unimportance and that Congress has a            unknown context or not directly to this point.19 This
decisionmaking role.                                      raises the question of what improper pressure might
   Sociologists have likewise concluded that the          look like. Unless there are detailed inside accounts,
American public will tolerate casualties but require      improper pressure, inferred or otherwise, would be
that US interests warrant the cost.16 A study shows       manifest as a militarily unjustified decision. If it
that the public did not reduce support for the So-        were a rational course of action, no one would presume
malia operation because 18 US soldiers were killed.       it to be improper, implied or even overt pressure.
Public support collapsed once politicians said the           If a leader adjusted strategy to eliminate casual-
mission could not succeed. It went on to point out        ties and still accomplished the mission, he would be
that the public supported the Bosnia mission, despite     considered a hero. If he refused to commit forces
the mistaken belief that US soldiers had died there.17    until complementary action had eliminated the risk
We know that casualty tolerance is a product of a         of casualties and were still to succeed in the mis-
rational calculation of three variables: interests, re-   sion, it would be hailed as a triumph of synchroni-
sults and costs.18 Public reaction indicated casualty     zation and politico-military campaign planning. If
intolerance without qualification.                        he enforced inconvenient security measures but got
                                                          the job done without casualties, he would be called
DistinguishingImproperPressure                            prudent and responsible. Success is success and the
FromPlanningGuidance                                      cheaper the better. The only indicator that inferred
   Many commentators seem to presume that politi-         political pressure has improperly influenced an op-
cal guidance to limit casualties is improper. There       eration would be an inversion of the mission-first-
is also a popular suspicion that senior military lead-    at-least-cost formula. As long as the mission is ac-
ers have allowed an inference of zero-casualty toler-     complished acceptably with minimal casualties, it
ance to affect mission accomplishment. This leads to      is impossible to conclude that political influence has
two questions: What is improper pressure? What would      been improper or that military leaders have failed
an action based on improper pressure look like?           to do their duty because of what they infer.
   Appropriate pressure seeks mission accomplish-            To judge negatively the conservative approach of
ment at least cost and considers whether decisions        military leaders who successfully accomplish the
accept the estimated risks and costs. Before select-      mission is to express personal preference, not an
ing a course of action, parameters such as accept-        objective conclusion. Joulwan, speaking of his Bos-
able risk or casualty tolerance are simply planning       nia experience, states without reservation that his
guidance. Since military operations in US and Brit-       plans and policy were based on military necessity,
ish doctrine support political objectives, such           not political or social pressure.20 Senior US and Brit-
political guidance would be proper. Using this guid-      ish military leaders selected force-protection ap-
ance, military leaders would prepare the most ac-         proaches based on military factors, doctrine and
ceptable courses of action and advise how to bal-         mission accomplishment. The political mission re-
ance political and military costs and benefits.           mained paramount, and military leaders adhered to
Considering casualties, a central factor in the           planning guidance.

MILITARY REVIEW    l   July-August 2001                                                                       75
                                                                                                                    Soldier, UK Ministry of Defence
OriginofUSForce-Protection                                ating working relationships with the local popula-
PolicyintheBalkans                                        tion.23 The force did not exhibit symptoms of
   Joulwan states that initial US force-protection        unprofessionalism reminiscent of Vietnam; and Brit-
policy was based on military necessity and that he        ish General Roderick Cordy-Simpson, UN Protec-
was influenced by two factors. First, many believed       tion Forces commander in Sarajevo, suggested be-
that a lack of professionalism contributed signifi-       fore Parliament that the US approach had merit.24
cantly to the US failure in Vietnam and that lax uni-     In a subsequent report, Parliament stated that “pur-
form standards were part of the lost professional-        suit of a military doctrine based upon the use of
ism. Enforcing mission-appropriate uniform policies       minimum force may not be the most appropriate in
became an underlying tenet of professionalism.            coercive scenarios such as Kosovo.”25 US generals
Since the mission in Bosnia was peace enforcement,        made policy based on military necessity as they
not peacekeeping, the force had to be prepared for        knew it, and they saw results that confirmed their
combat. Joulwan’s uniform policy conformed to that        work. In their busy world, there would have been
need.                                                     no reason to revisit something that was not bro-
   Second, senior US military leaders cited a terrorist   ken—except that the law of unintended conse-
threat to US forces, perhaps greater than that to our     quences always applies.
allies. Joulwan held the conviction that strength de-     RumorsofUSCasualtyIntolerance
ters attacks and encourages cooperation. He felt that        Ambassador for International Religious Freedom
the IFOR peace-enforcement mission must not be            Robert A. Seiple, commenting on the emphasis that
confused with the UN Protection Force’s peace-            US military leaders place on avoiding casualties,
keeping mission. An image of combat readiness             said, “The safest place on the modern battlefield is
was, in itself, good protection.21                        in uniform.”26 Although senior military leaders fol-
   Joulwan’s philosophies have been preserved in          lowed doctrine and not improper pressure, rumors
the US force-protection policy for the Balkans. Re-       persist. US and international military communities
ported results support its soundness. US command-         believe that US senior military leaders do fear ca-
ers point to casualty statistics, which include acci-     sualties. Conventional wisdom holds that senior
dent victims, that are lower than those for forces        military officers, influenced by politicians and the
with other postures.22 The mission was accom-             public, have adopted a zero-casualty standard.27 The
plished, and the combat uniform did not hinder cre-       US European Command’s joint review of the

76                                                                         July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
US Army

                     A soldier of the British Coldstream Guards plays with
                     Balkan children (facing page) in stereotypical contrast
                     to soldiers of the US 1st Armored Division.

                                                                      ating class that had he told his platoon that there was
                 The zero-casualty idea must have                     nothing worth any of them being hurt over.31 A
           originated as a popular interpretation of                  newly arrived major was told that if the mission in-
          events—a grass-roots phenomenon not based                   terfered with force protection, the mission came sec-
            on traditional reading of the policy’s words.             ond. A battalion commander reported, “It’s simple.
          Fueled by observation and constant exposure to              When I received my written mission from division,
           whispered certainty, the tactical military has             absolutely minimizing casualties was the mission
          embraced the belief along with the rest of the              prioritized as first, so I in turn passed it on in my
             world. It now stands as an article of faith.             written operation order to my company command-
                                                                      ers.”32 US Army Europe’s 1997 operation order on
                                                                      force protection states in the first line of its concept
          Bosnia operation concluded that “It was gener-              of operation, “Force protection is the first priority
          ally understood that fatalities would not be po-            of all forces.”33 These examples could be interpreted
          litically acceptable in this, a peace implementation        as being consistent with zero-casualty guidance.
          operation.”28 An IDA report on Bosnia found that            Raising force protection to the status of a mission
          “US national commanders were operating under the            suggests as much. Clearly those below the senior
          implied guidance to incur no casualties although no         military level are convinced that the United States
          written guidance was ever issued to this effect.”29         is casualty-averse. What is not immediately clear is
          This conclusion is ubiquitous in literature and opin-       the origin of the idea.
          ion among the British, Australian, Canadian and                US force-protection policy is not stated in zero-
          New Zealand armies. A report from an international          casualty terms. Written policy uses traditional ways
          conference of these nations stated, “It was under-          to describe commanders’ responsibility for troops,
          stood that domestic political imperatives influence         ways analogous to those seen in long-standing lead-
          US force-protection thinking, while the UK and oth-         ership doctrine and more recent joint doctrine—nei-
          ers will look for opportunities to ‘reach out’ to lo-       ther of which has a zero-casualty message.34 It fol-
          cal communities at the lowest levels and as early in        lows that the zero-casualty idea must have originated
          an operation as possible.”30                                as a popular interpretation of events—a grass-roots
             Commonly cited as evidence are anecdotal re-             phenomenon not based on traditional reading of
          ports. A platoon leader recently returned from Bos-         the policy’s words. Fueled by observation and con-
          nia told the United States Military Academy gradu-          stant exposure to whispered certainty, the tactical

          MILITARY REVIEW   l   July-August 2001                                                                           77
                                                           The troops did not see a high threat, despite the of-
        Factor in Mogadishu, initial US                    ficial mission of peace enforcement.40 What uniform
 political rejection of a Kosovo ground option             and operational procedures are most appropriate for
   and an air war prosecuted from more than                zero-casualty tolerance? Those indicated in the
10,000 feet. The explanation fit the phenomena             policy—those used for combat. If there were no
  and created its own weather. The fact that the           tacit zero-tolerance policy in effect, junior com-
  United States has suffered casualties without            manders would expect flexibility in dress and pro-
 any report of adverse action against its tactical         cedures, much as the British enjoy. Yet, authority
leaders has not had any discernible effect on the          to be flexible was reserved for more senior military
 myth. Like paradigms, myths are not replaced,             leaders. Local generals commanding the Bosnia di-
   even if they are incorrect, until something             vision or Kosovo brigade sector were not seen as
                                                           having the authority to change the posture. It was
               better comes along.                         thought they had to clear exceptions with generals
                                                           outside the zone of operations.41
military has embraced the belief along with the rest          Force protection became prioritized above the
of the world.35 It now stands as an article of faith. It   tactical mission as confusion over the nature of
appears to be as Thucydides said two millennia ago,        the operation conflated combat procedures and
“Most people will not take trouble in finding out the      noncombat policy.42 Using the term “force pro-
truth, but are much more inclined to accept the first      tection” to describe this uneasy mix only exacer-
story they hear.”36                                        bated the confusion. Cohen reinforced the myth with
                                                           statements about force-protection priority. Conser-
Grass-RootsMythology                                       vative tests for committing US forces, such as the
   The belief that US force-protection policy is based     so-called Caspar Weinberger-Colin Powell doctrine,
on casualty intolerance is a myth that does not ac-        complemented the picture by fitting the casualty-
curately describe the policy’s origins or intent. The      intolerance myth.43 Mandated force-protection brief-
artifact of the force-protection policy is interpreted     ings and frequent inspections have lent additional
through this myth and misunderstood. What the              emphasis. The Army listened to the media and saw
authors of the policy see simply as a more formal          its allies next door choose less protection, lend-
articulation of a commander’s traditional responsi-        ing credence to the interpretation. Factor in
bility for minimizing casualties, agents of the myth       Mogadishu, initial US political rejection of a Ko-
see as an exhortation to zero casualties.37                sovo ground option and an air war prosecuted from
   This unintended interpretation has gained the           more than 10,000 feet.44 The explanation fit the phe-
weight of collective belief, which has colored the         nomena and created its own weather. The fact that
interpretation of orders, events and affected deci-        the United States has suffered casualties without any
sions. The myth is so widely accepted that it has          report of adverse action against its tactical leaders
become folklore and changed US military bureau-            has not had any discernible effect on the myth.45
cracy.38 As an example, force protection is being          Like paradigms, myths are not replaced, even if they
institutionalized in formal structures, which under-       are incorrect, until something better comes along.
scores its importance, provides additional legitimacy      Both the grass-roots army and its senior leaders have
to the myth and enhances its usefulness in explain-        looked at the same phenomenon, seen a different
ing the world.39 It becomes a self-sustaining cycle.       picture and found no reason to change their inter-
   The myth then becomes routine. As guidance              pretations.
spreads downward, it becomes more elaborate and               The zero-casualty myth is built on an assumption
restrictive. The inevitable rise of institutional struc-   that outside beliefs are influential within the mili-
tures produces staff officers with checklists, risk-       tary.46 The theory is supported by the Center for
assessment methodologies and force-protection              Strategic and International Studies that observes,
paragraphs in orders. Force protection rises to the        “[T]oday’s armed forces will also be pushed by the
status of a mission from its traditional role as a re-     winds of society’s pressures and pulled by the cur-
sponsibility. Institutionalizing force protection has      rents created by government polices and technologi-
become a cottage industry in the US military; it now       cal change. Society’s pressures and the ramifications
consumes resources and affects events. Even an in-         of government policies have a major impact on the
tentional impression of zero-casualty tolerance could      current climate within military units.”47
not have been better reinforced.                              The US Army has redefined a commander’s tra-
   It is reinforced more directly when observations        ditional responsibility for soldiers and skewed the
fit expectations. Interviews with junior military lead-    relationship between it and the mission. But, this
ers in Bosnia in 1996 indicated widespread dissat-         new understanding refutes the contention that US
isfaction with what was seen as out-of-touch policy.       and British approaches to similar force-protection

78                                                                          July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
                Consequences of lax
                uniform standards go
                beyond appearance
                to functionality — here
                dirty weapons and
US Army         ammunition.

                   The initial US force-protection policy was based on military necessity and that
             he was influenced by two factors. First, many believed that a lack of professionalism contributed
          significantly to the US failure in Vietnam and that lax uniform standards were part of the lost
             professionalism. Enforcing mission-appropriate uniform policies became an underlying tenet of
           professionalism. Since the mission in Bosnia was peace enforcement, not peacekeeping, the force
                    had to be prepared for combat. Joulwan’s uniform policy conformed to that need.

          doctrine differ because of political pressure on          empire for the sake of survival. Because its home
          US military leaders.                                      islands have few resources, Britain has been tied to
                                                                    the sea. Mercantilism became essential to its pros-
          TheCalculusofCasualtyTolerance                            perity, a trend fueled by demands of the industrial
             Ultimately societies determine what is worth dy-       revolution. The growing need for foreign raw ma-
          ing for and, therefore, what is tolerable risk. Assess-   terials, labor and markets required subduing com-
          ing their militaries requires understanding the un-       petitors and protecting freedom of the seas. Britain’s
          derlying social calculus. The United States and           history is replete with wars to sustain itself on sea
          Britain use the same formula but weigh the factors        and shore far from home. Dandeker has also pointed
          differently. When side by side, the nations may re-       out that the British public is accustomed to casual-
          spond to the same threat differently. It appears that     ties.49 Perhaps they will flinch less quickly than
          both US and British citizens tolerate casualties when     Americans simply because, historically, they have
          their interests are at stake. However, Britons find       not had the luxury.
          their interests at stake more often, and their in-           On the other hand, principal US experiences have
          terests are of higher relative value. Thus, their tol-    been directly linked to home defense or protecting
          erance for casualties is naturally higher, and as         American ideals, not economic survival. The Revo-
          members of that society, their military leaders are       lution, Civil War, War of 1812, World Wars I and
          commensurately shaped. US interests are not di-           II, Korea and Vietnam have all been popularly char-
          rectly involved as often as British ones and are less     acterized as defending home and the American way
          often seen as vital.                                      of life.50 The fact that several were fought abroad
             The United Kingdom historically views itself in        is simply taken as smart strategy designed to avoid
          terms of its military interventions.48 It has pursued     war on US soil. Small US expeditions, even those

          MILITARY REVIEW    l   July-August 2001                                                                      79
of the early 20th century arguably pursued for eco-       do value soldiers but choose not to risk fixing what
nomic reasons, are largely unknown to Americans,          works. If they suffer somewhat more, the calculus
and where recorded, are characterized as either neu-      of their society’s tolerance will allow it.
trally or idealistically warranted interventions.51
   Traditionally, US wars and military expeditions        ThePeople’sArmy
have been justified as responses to threats against the       US culture has aided the US Army’s willing-
United States or its citizens abroad.52 In fact, com-     ness to accept an unintended implication of zero-
mentators and politicians hailed the end of the Cold      casualty tolerance. The US Army has a reputation
War as containment policy succeeding against an “evil     as a firepower force —to avoid casualties, the
empire.”53 The Cold War and minor forays were not         United States invented “reconnaissance by fire,” the
about acute threats of world war or oil cutoffs. Un-      “daisy cutter” and the atomic bomb. US military
like Britain, the United States has seldom been geo-      doctrine has always been able to overwhelm its op-
graphically or economically threatened. The term          ponent with an overmatching force. It deploys and
“casualty tolerance” has different meanings for each      fights in strength with adequate resources to assure
country, depending on its culture and politics.           victory. The basis for this approach has been an ide-
   British leaders may consider their interest in the     alistic valuation of the individual, along the lines of
Balkans as more vital than the United States does         John Locke and Jean-Jacques Rousseau. The ma-
and not just because of geographic proximity. More-       teriel luxury of bombs and bullets substituted for
over, senior British military leaders have been so-       soldiers’ lives reinforces the viewpoint that all men
cialized to a tendency to follow British tradition and    are created equal. Philosophy and wealth do not in-
have no immediate reason to jeopardize their tradi-       still a zero-casualty cultural attitude but, rather, re-
tional “hearts and minds” campaign by taking a            inforce commanders’ traditional responsibility to
more US-like approach, even though it could im-           avoid casualties at all cost. However, it is a short
mediately reduce casualty risks. The United States        step along the spectrum from minimal to zero ca-
would not have the same option of choosing a less-        sualties, one the US Army is now taking.
protective posture, not because of casualty intoler-          US general officers, like their British counterparts,
ance within US society, but because of the height-        respond to their own culture. The US military’s
ened standard set by its culture’s focus on indi-         symbolic capital lies in its readiness to use over-
viduals and by the expectations set by US history.        whelming force. Senior US military leaders under-
                                                          stand this without thought and use it just as the Brit-
AnImperialArmy                                            ish use their approach. Force-protection policy
   Britain has unapologetically fought wars for eco-      developers who examine the major influences on
nomic purposes. The British military serves the           US and British militaries rule out direct and indi-
monarch and suffers wounds in service of queen and        rect political and public influences as causal. Nearly
country. British military culture is expeditionary;       identical doctrines have allowed such different poli-
troops often have deployed in relatively small            cies because leaders applying the doctrines are prod-
strength on distant shores.54 As a result, the British    ucts of different cultures, experiences and histori-
have long practiced persuasion based on an iron fist      cal pressures. Because underlying ways of thinking
in a velvet glove, a policy or perhaps doctrine re-       and operating have been effective and codified in
fined during their extensive experience with small-       traditions that promise further success, it would be
scale politico-military operations.55 Resources left      surprising if US and British generals had arrived at
them no choice. They had to engage hearts and             the same policy.
minds immediately, fighting only when no other                Successful multinational operations must bridge
choice existed because they have seldom been able         such gaps simply by coordinating policy during coa-
to overwhelm an opponent by combat power alone.           lition formation and routine military-to-military con-
   In doing so, the British have developed a cha-         tacts. Better yet, peacetime engagement with other
risma some call arrogance. It is not. This demeanor       militaries, including participation in international
enables them to dominate without constant recourse        forums, develops practical interoperability tools and
to force of arms and to develop a professional repu-      allows people to meet people. There is room for
tation that is a form of symbolic capital.56 Predicated   additional research, for instance, to validate or de-
on symbolic capital, the British posture requires cal-    bunk the popular notion that policy dissimilarities are
culated, cavalier demonstration for effectiveness.        counterproductive. Also, the US Army should exam-
Despite the benefits cited by senior US military lead-    ine the balance between mission and casualties, and
ers, the British have not taken up the US posture         its potential impact on its warfighting ethic. Armies
because it runs counter to the tradition and culture      around the world are transforming. The better they
of British civil and military society. The culture sur-   understand these issues, the more promise there is for
vives because it has proven effective. The British        compatibility when and where it counts.

80                                                                          July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW

     1. UK Force Protection Doctrine, January 1999; Joint Chiefs of Staff, Joint             25. House of Commons Select Committee on Defence, Fourteenth Report,
Publication (JP) 3-07.3, Joint Tactics, Techniques and Procedures for Peace Op-           Section III, The Conduct of the Campaign, 24 October 2000, para 326.
erations (Washington, DC: US Government Printing Office [GPO], 12 February                   26. Feaver and Gelpi, 1.
1999); US Army Field Manual (FM) 100-23, Peace Operations (Washington, DC:                   27. Conversino.
GPO, 30 December 1994); interview with LTC Gary Harrity, Chief, Force Protec-                28. OJE Joint After-Action Review, USEUCOM, Stuttgart, Germany, December
tion Division, Combined Arms Doctrine Directorate, US Army Command and Gen-               1995-December 1996, OJE Implementation Phase, Force Protection, 29, accessed
eral Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, 6 December 2000.                            via IDA.
     2. US and British force-protection doctrine is similar. The major difference is         29. Buchanan, et al., III-19.
that British doctrine explicitly includes combat while US doctrine covers noncom-            30. FOCUS 2000 Post-Seminar Report, F-3.
bat operations in a combat zone.                                                             31. US Army lieutenant from the 1st Armored Division recently returned from
     3. American, British, Canadian, Australian (ABCA) RAINBOW SERPENT Post               Bosnia speaking to cadets at the United States Military Academy in January 1999;
Exercise Report, (Rosslyn, VA: ABCA Program, 1998), passim, <www.abca.hqda.               quotation provided by Dr. Shubert, US Joint Center for History, Pentagon> ABCA FOCUS 2000 Post Exercise Report, (Rosslyn, VA: ABCA Pro-               (
gram, 1998) F-3, para 13.                                                                    32. Don M. Snider, John A. Nagl and Tony Pfaff, Army Professionalism, the
     4. Buchanan, et al., Operation Joint Endeavor—Descriptions and Lessons               Military Ethic, and Officership in the 21st Century (Carlisle, PA: US Army Strate-
Learned (Planning and Deployment Phases) (Arlington, VA: Institute for Defense            gic Studies Institute, 1999), 1-2.
Analyses [IDA], 1996).                                                                       33. US Army Europe Operation Order 1-97, Force Protection (Office of the
     5. Records of the Parliament Stationary Office: Commons Hansard, Written             Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations, Headquarters, US Army Europe, March
Answers and Official Reports; Lords Hansard, Written Answers, Official Reports;           1997), para 3a(1).
and Select Committee on Defence reports for December 1995 through Novem-                     34. JP 3-07.3; FM 100-23.
ber 2000, <>.                                      35. Interview with LTC Hodgkins, 10 October 2000, Washington, DC. Hodgkins
     6. London Timesarchives, < >; Daily Telegrapharchives,             was the defense attache in Bosnia from April 1999 to July 2000. He had daily
<>, website archives for December 1995 through November                contact with policymaking commanders involved with both SFOR and KFOR. He
2000.                                                                                     stated that force protection was the primary effort, with the mission coming sec-
     7. Christopher Dandeker, Head of Department of War Studies, King’s College,          ond.
London, e-mail to Richard R. Caniglia, 18 Sepember 2000, Subject: RE: your                   36. Thucydides, History of the Peloponnesian War (New York: Viking Press,
project.                                                                                  1986), 1 and 20.
     8. British House of Commons Committee on Defence, Minutes of Evidence                   37. Joulwan interview.
(Question 11), 5 July 2000, <>, accessed           38. Walter W. Powell and Paul J. DiMaggio, introduction in The New Institution-
17 November 2000. The only indication of casualty aversion found was Dr. Chris-           alism in Organizational Analysis, Walter W. Powell and Paul J. DiMaggio eds. (Chi-
topher Coker’s testimony before the Select Committee on Defence in hearings on            cago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 1991), chapter 2.
the relationship of the military to the public. In Coker’s words, “We live in risk-          39. The US military has institutionalized force protection by creating bureaucratic
averse societies. . . . the calculus of risk is the basis on which we elect our politi-   organizations to service it. These include staff sections at various levels and doc-
cians.”                                                                                   trine.
     9. Implementation force for the Dayton accords, followed by the stabilization           40. Notes of interviews conducted by Buchanan, et al., Volumes I to VI, passim.
force (SFOR).                                                                                41. Hodgkins interview.
   10. Interview with General George A. Joulwan on 24 November 2000, Wash-                   42. The Joulwan policy was crafted for combat, but the US Army Europe Force
ington, DC.                                                                               Protection Operation Order 1-97 applied to operations short of combat. For op-
   11. Remarks by President William J. Clinton at the National Defense University,        erations short of combat, safety is the first priority. For combat the mission is first,
29 January 1998.                                                                          and force preservation is handled by combat doctrine on security, not force-
   12. WAMU FM Radio Station, comments by Admiral C. Quigley, Pentagon press              protection policy.
briefing on USS Cole, Washington, DC, 2 November 2000.                                       43. Secretary of Defense William Cohen said it is “the top” priority; the Chair-
   13. US National Security Strategy for a New Century, The White House, De-              man of the Joint Chiefs of Staff described it as “a top” priority.
cember 1999, 20.                                                                             44. The loss of US soldiers in a failed operation that is credited with causing
   14. WAMU FM Radio Station, Statement of William Cohen, Pentagon press                  US withdrawal from Somalia.
conference on the USS Cole, Washington, DC, 12 October 2000.                                 45. Multi-National Brigade (East) Operational Overview, 1st Infantry Division, 3
   15. Statement of General Wesley K. Clark, commander in chief, US European              May 2000, lists one US soldier dead and 22 wounded during Kosovo operations.
Command (USEUCOM), before the Senate Armed Services Committee, 29 Feb-                       46. Feaver and Gelpi, 4.
ruary 2000, 49.                                                                              47. “American Military Culture in the Twenty-First Century,” Center for Strate-
   16. Peter Feaver and Christopher Gelpi, “The Civil-Military Gap and Casualty           gic and International Studies, February 2000, <>,
Aversion” (Draft), a paper prepared for the Triangle Institute for Security Studies       19 January 2000.
Project on the Gap Between the Military and Civilian Society, provided Septem-               48. Edgar Schein as quoted by Don M. Snider in “An Uninformed Debate On
ber 2000, 30; Eric V. Larsen, Casualties and Consensus (Santa Monica, CA: RAND            Military Culture,” Orbis: A Journal of World Affairs, Winter 1999, 11-26.
Corporation, 1996); Michael Alvis, Understanding the Role of Casualties in US                49. Dandeker; Ben Shephard interview with British Broadcasting Company (BBC)
Peace Operations: Landpower Essay Series (Arlington, VA: Association of the US            World Update, BBC World Service, rebroadcast by WETA FM, 9 November 2000.
Army, 1999); Mark J. Conversino, “Sawdust Superpower: Perceptions of US Ca-               Shephard, author of A War of Nerves, a study of 20th-century military psychol-
sualty Tolerance in the Post-Gulf War Era,” Strategic Review, Winter 1997.                ogy, observed during a discussion of the casualty tolerance of societies that the
   17. Feaver and Gelpi, 12.                                                              British are relatively tolerant, given their experience in World War I that has set a
   18. Erik V. Larson, “Ends and Means in the Democratic Conversation: Under-             baseline for measuring all casualty rates.
standing the Role of Casualties in Support of US Military Operations,” Ph.D. dis-            50. Vietnam, despite its rising unpopularity after 1968, was initially a popular
sertation, RAND Graduate School, 1996, 320; Feaver and Gelpi, 9 and 28.                   cause based on defending freedom. The later opposition has challenged only the
   19. British House of Commons Select Committee on Defence, Minutes of Evi-              characterization of the threat as dire and the unproductiveness of the strategy em-
dence (Question 11), 5 July 2000. In the UK, General Sir Charles Guthrie, Chief           ployed, not the basic motivation.
of British Defence Staff, said, “We only do what the market will allow. What the             51. A review of the Standards of Learning Test results for Virginia high schools
market wants is zero-tolerance of casualties; it wants fewer wounded soldiers             indicates that only 39 percent of students achieved a passing score in US history
coming back; it wants, essentially, no casualties at all if you can get away with         (Virginia Department of Education), <
it.” In context, this referred to preference, not intolerance. See also Lessons           soltests/hs_history.html>; Ellen C. Collier, Congressional Research Service—Li-
Learned Presentation—UK Experiences in Kosovo, Memorandum for Record—                     brary of Congress, 7 October 1993, <>.
TEAL XXXIV Meeting, ABCA Armies’ Standardization Program, Agenda Item 10,                 The United States has deployed forces on named operations abroad 234 times
5 May 2000, 23, <>; Wesley K. Clark, “The United                from 1798 to 1993. A Congressional Research Service report overwhelmingly
States and NATO: The Way Ahead,” Parameters, Winter 1999-2000.                            characterizes these in altruistic phrases such as “to protect American interests”
   20. Joulwan interview.                                                                 and “to protect lives and property.”
   21. Ibid.                                                                                 52. The criteria commonly used for just war theories consider the morality of the
   22. Operation Joint Endeavor (OJE) after-action review briefing (unclassified          object, the risk of collateral damage or casualties and the probability of success.
slide), USEUCOM, Patch Barracks, Stuttgart, Germany, 18 March 1997, accessed                 53. “But my nomination for the most important, lasting, and successful Ameri-
through IDA, Arlington, Virginia; Brigadier General S. Kindred, commanding gen-           can initiative in diplomacy during the 1900’s has to be the strategic concept of
eral, US National Support Element, notes from interviews conducted by Buchanan,           ‘containment,’ containment of the Soviet Union and world communism.” Henry
et al., in preparation of Operation Joint Endeavor—Descriptions and Lessons               Mattox, editor of American Diplomacy, <
Learned (Planning and Deployment Phases), Volumes I to VI. Access to these                edit_14.html>, 8 Sep 2000.
notes is restricted and must be granted by the authors.                                      54. Dandeker.
   23. Tony Cucolo, “Grunt Diplomacy: In the Beginning There Were Only Soldiers,”            55. Morris Janowitz, The Professional Soldier: A Social and Political Portrait (New
Parameters, Spring 1999, 110-26.                                                          York: The Free Press, 1960), 322-25.
   24. Remarks before the House of Commons Select Committee on Defence,                      56. P. Bourdieu, Outline of a Theory of Practice, (Cambridge, UK: Cambridge
Minutes of Evidence (Questions 233 and 234), 3 February 1999.                             University Press, 1977), chapter 4.

                       Lieutenant Colonel Richard R. Caniglia is assigned to the Strategic and Operational Doctrine
                   and Maneuver Desk; American, British, Canadian, Australian Armies’ Standardization Program;
                   Headquarters, Department of the Army (DA), Washington, DC. He received a B.S. from the Univer-
                   sity of Nebraska— Lincoln and is completing his M.A. at George Mason University. He is a gradu-
                   ate of the US Army Command and General Staff College. He has served in various command and
                   staff positions, including Equipping and Sustainment Policy and Prioritization Desk, Office of the
                   Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations and Plans — Force Development, Washington, DC; Require-
                   ments, Programs and Priorities Division, Headquarters, DA, Washington; director, Aviation Trades
                   Training; Aviation Logistics School, Fort Eustis, Virginia; research and development coordinator,
                   US Army Aviation Applied Technology Directorate, Fort Eustis; S4, 207th Military Intelligence (MI)
                   Brigade, VII Corps, Stuttgart, Germany; and S3, 3d MI Battalion, 501st MI Brigade, Korea.

MILITARY REVIEW               l   July-August 2001                                                                                                                           81
     HE END OF THE COLD WAR marked a
T      new era for the US Army. Recent changes
ranging from the geopolitical structure, to the na-
                                                                 Concurrent with the Army officer’s
                                                           changing role in the westward expansion, an
ture and role of the family, to individual soldier          intellectual awakening among some officers
values have significantly affected the US Army. As       moved the Army to consider increasing officers’
a result, the 21st-century Army is an organization        study of the “theoretical and practical duties of
in transition. The institutional level has responded     their profession.” This push led to establishing a
with planned development and force moderniza-                 school for the application of infantry and
tion efforts that focus on new technology and mis-         cavalry, a school for light artillery and the US
sion roles. Likewise, at the soldier level, the Army         Army War College in 1901. The new PME
is responding by redesigning efficiency reports            System, established just before World War II,
and increasing the length of basic training.1 While       gave officers a broad undergraduate education
such changes are impressive, the Army must grapple         that continued with specialized training once
with the issue of adequacy. In the rapidly chang-                  they entered the Regular Army.
ing post-Cold War environment, the Army cannot
merely react to change and risk a large lag effect;      that “service schools and colleges must do more to
it must continue to pursue a proactive approach          help the officer corps adapt to the rapid technologi-
to change.                                               cal advances of the information age and the chang-
   One area strained by changes in the nature of war     ing mission of the post-Cold War era.”3 The com-
is officer education. The comparatively new, rap-        mittee noted that an Army captain patrolling in
idly changing role of professional military officers     Bosnia not only has several times the information
necessitates their increased understanding and ap-       and advanced technology at his fingertips than a
plication of sociological concepts. As a discipline,     peer might have had even a few years ago but also
sociology provides a systematic method from which        confronts a far more complex operational environ-
to assess and organize social activity. A sociologi-     ment. Today’s missions require the captain to be
cal background gives company grade combat arms           equally peacekeeper, negotiator, diplomat and sol-
officers the necessary conceptual skills to operate      dier.4 However, while superbly identifying the di-
on the modern battlefield and prepares them to take      lemma surrounding today’s junior officers, the
advantage of advanced professional education later       committee stopped short of linking a solution to
in their careers.2 In effect, the Army can better pre-   proposed changes in the PME System.
pare its officers for adverse and changing conditions
associated with today’s missions by using specific       OfficerDevelopment
collegiate training rather than relying solely on in-      In 1802 the United States Military Academy
stitutional programs.                                    (USMA) was founded, marking one of America’s
   Recognizing the dilemma facing today’s military       earliest attempts to codify Army officer training.
leaders, the Center for Strategic and International      Since then officer development has experienced sev-
Studies convened a committee in 1997 to assess the       eral significant changes, yet at the same time, such
Professional Military Education (PME) System and         associated activities remain one of two distinct but
provide recommendations. The committee found             mutually supporting components: ethos and intellect.

82                                                                        July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
    “Ethos” concerns fledgling officers’ corporate        infantry and cavalry, a school for light artillery and
identity, developed through selection, institutional      the US Army War College in 1901.14 The new PME
instruction and informal mentoring.5 Ideally, it in-      System, established just before World War II, gave
stills in young officers a sense of fraternity and a
commitment to selfless service strong enough to                      Today, given the magnitude
endure the institution’s comprehensive demands.6 In        and number of changes affecting the military,
the end, ethos binds all Army officers, regardless        postsecondary schools can no longer adequately
of their branch, and directs their conduct and con-        fulfill the intellectual component of officer
tinued development throughout their careers.                 development. While some colleges and
    “Intellect” represents the technical and mechani-     universities can meet this need, the Army cannot
cal skills officers require while executing their du-          assume that any bachelor’s degree is
ties. Military revolutions of the 16th and 17th cen-                 adequate for most officers.
turies redefined the officer corps. Early in the 18th
century it became apparent to the great armies that
it was too costly for all officers to be general prac-    officers a broad undergraduate education that con-
titioners who learned their craft solely on the battle-   tinued with specialized training once they entered
field. In response, specialized staff schools emerged,    the Regular Army. World War II’s mobilization
and the first permanent standing (staff) officer          demands disrupted PME, but the Army returned to
school appeared in France in 1780.7 Unlike Euro-          it after the war and continued to refine it.
pean military schools that developed seasoned of-
ficers, USMA focused on officer candidates. This          CollegeEducation:Historically
arrangement enabled its primarily military faculty           The Army’s near exponential growth from 1939
to develop both ethos and intellect simultaneously.       to 1944 turned PME on its head, largely reversing
A corporate sense of competence grew from mas-            advances made over the previous 50 years. USMA’s
tering specialized military skills, a condition that      college program was compressed and accelerated to
eventually defined commissioned Army service as           meet immediate requirements while the size of in-
a profession.8                                            coming cohorts dwindled.15 Reserve officers, who
    Although established as a profession, Army            had earned commissions while attending civilian
“officership” has not been stagnant. Continual            colleges, were mobilized while their former Reserve
changes in warfare have forced changes on the pro-        Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) commissioning
fession of arms, a process readily evident by trac-       sources were suspended.16 Instead, the Army relied
ing the changes in officers’ intellectual development.    principally on officer candidate schools (OCS)—
USMA spent its first decades providing a terminal         which did not require a college education—to meet
professional education and a source of Army doc-          its officer needs.17
trine on tactics and strategy.9 As a consequence of          Although World War II disrupted PME, it ulti-
westward expansion, the Army officer’s role changed       mately led to two principal refinements: develop-
to include infrastructure development on the fron-        ing professional officers to deal with other, non-
tier. In response, USMA’s curriculum changed,             conventional military affairs (such as political and
resulting in the founding of the civil engineer-          economic) and the need to standardize PME across
ing field.10 This precedent marked the first Army         the services.18 At war’s end USMA continued to
officer training changes in response to officer ac-       commission officers with baccalaureate degrees but
tivities unrelated to warfare.11 Continued curriculum     could not meet the Army’s greater need for career
changes allowed USMA’s admission and member-              officers.19 As a result, during the Korean War,
ship in the Association of American Colleges in           ROTC experienced a large expansion with an ac-
1927. In 1933 Congress authorized USMA and the            companying increase in the number of ROTC of-
US Naval Academy to confer Bachelor of Science            ficers receiving regular commissions.20 Additionally,
degrees.12                                                in 1952, ROTC accession programs at colleges were
    Concurrent with the Army officer’s changing role      standardized and included a requirement for a col-
in the westward expansion, an intellectual awaken-        lege degree in any field for those aspiring for posi-
ing among some officers moved the Army to con-            tions within the Active force.21 Training in areas
sider increasing officers’ study of the “theoretical      other than conventional military affairs was left to
and practical duties of their profession.”13 This push    the service colleges at the other end of the PME
led to establishing a school for the application of       System.22

MILITARY REVIEW    l   July-August 2001                                                                      83
   A college education serves the Army officer in            changes and provide senior commanders with ap-
several ways. First, a college degree demonstrates an        propriate advice on their functions. However, staffs
officer’s capacity for learning and self-discipline. Like-   below division level are comprised of generalists
wise, the process of acquiring a college education           rather than specialists. At these lower levels, staff
develops the critical thinking and reasoning skills          officers still advise commanders on matters related
                                                             to their functions. However, unlike staffers at upper
                                                             echelons, these company grade staff officers receive
    If the Army implements a force designed                  nearly identical training in the PME System—their
around brigade-sized units, then the density of              specialized training is limited. Additionally, if the
 specialized staff officers assisting commanders             Army implements a force designed around brigade-
  decreases further. Consequently, as modern                 sized units, then the density of specialized staff of-
warfare pushes critical mission decisions down               ficers assisting commanders decreases further.24
  on subordinate leaders, the need for greater,              Consequently, as modern warfare pushes critical
more specialized education and training at lower             mission decisions down on subordinate leaders, the
levels increases. One way to handle this need is             need for greater, more specialized education and
 to further focus or specialize an officer’s early           training at lower levels increases. One way to handle
  development beyond the technical necessities               this need is to further focus or specialize an officer’s
         of basic branch qualification.                      early development beyond the technical necessities
                                                             of basic branch qualification.
                                                                The Army has responded to changes in the meth-
necessary to address unforeseen and unspecified future       ods of war with Force XXI and Army After Next
problems. Additionally, a college education can pro-         initiatives, which represent a systematic institution-
vide future officers with specific skills that are un-       wide approach affecting everything from strategic
attainable through the Army’s institutional training.23      doctrine to individual soldier training.25 However,
Today, postsecondary education (to include USMA)             not all of the Army’s adaptations to changes in war-
generally offers degrees on a broad-based foundation         fare have been as methodical. While the Army ag-
of mandatory classes from which a person selects a           gressively and effectively wrestles with changes,
field of study, or major. Historically, evolutionary         other aspects relating to the changing nature of war
changes in college education have been sufficient            and civil-military relations await review.26
to meet the Army’s needs. Until recently, college               Changes in the nature of war have altered the
curriculum changes have kept pace with the Army’s            skills required for its conduct, but the ability to act
changing role and professional officers’ needs. Re-          decisively and employ coercion will remain essen-
gardless of an officer’s field or branch, almost any         tial.27 The potential to employ controlled violence
college degree ensured adequate intellectual officer         provides validity to many new military tasks cap-
development and met the Army’s needs.                        tured under the heading of military operations
                                                             other than war (MOOTW). Having established its
CollegeEducation:PresentandFuture                            credibility as a fighting force, the US Army now
   Today, given the magnitude and number of                  finds itself more frequently engaged in actions such
changes affecting the military, postsecondary                as humanitarian assistance, nationbuilding and
schools can no longer adequately fulfill the intellec-       peace enforcement. For example, on an average day
tual component of officer development. While some            during 1998, the US Army had 143,000 soldiers de-
colleges and universities can meet this need, the            ployed in 77 countries participating in 214 distinct
Army cannot assume that any bachelor’s degree is             missions.28
adequate for most officers. The Army is undergo-                In the past, when the US Army’s missions fell
ing significant changes because of internal and ex-          under more conventional parameters, junior officers
ternal pressures. While the two components of of-            received sufficient specialized education and train-
ficer development remain valid, specific processes           ing from institutional sources. Because of today’s
and products of these components—particularly                more diverse missions, wide range of threats and
college education—must change at a comparable rate.          budget constraints, institutional military training
   Two significant changes affect the Army and               can no longer fully prepare junior officers for the
military leaders: advances in the methods (technol-          variance found within the full spectrum of conflict.
ogy) of war and variations in the nature of warfare,         Current and anticipated mission profiles require
including peacekeeping and counterterrorism. These           military leaders to affect environments defined
two forces, by their very nature, greatly affect jun-        by foreign military involvement, nongovernment
ior officers. At higher echelons, specialized offi-          organizations, varied local leaders, humanitarian is-
cers fill staff positions and stay current on specific       sues and opposing security forces.29 Tomorrow’s

84                                                                             July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
US Army

                                                                                             Soldiers of the 10th Mountain
                                                                                             Division patrol the streets of
                                                                                             Aquin, Haiti, as local women
                                                                                             continue washing clothes.

                       Although the upper military echelons may assess a society from a
            nation-state perspective, a company commander performing humanitarian assistance for
             a village must see that village as a society and act accordingly. Junior officers who apply
                sociological imagination to . . . three question sets can assess systematically various
                             21st-century situations and societies they will confront.

          officers require education coupled with training that    tively. In terms of academic training, sociology
          allows them to assess varied missions and under-         meets this need by providing a framework within
          stand their human dimensions. One way to pre-            which to integrate and synthesize other fields for
          pare leaders for this environment is to train them       application to social conditions. Sociology integrates
          to apply sociology.                                      and draws upon components of several other social
                                                                   sciences by considering “social life and behavior,
          SociologyandOfficerTraining                              especially in relation to social systems, how they
             Advocating training and education in sociology        work, how they change, the consequences they pro-
          does not mean all officers should become sociolo-        duce and their complex relations to people’s lives.”30
          gists—quite the contrary. The increasing complex-        Contemporary research on civil-military relations
          ity and division of labor calls for a military com-      applies sociology to military affairs but routinely
          posed of specialists in many areas. Likewise,            does not deliberately apply sociology during opera-
          because the Army requires various specialists, other     tions. Studying sociology produces more effective
          academic backgrounds will continue to serve the          professional officers. Segal, Segal and Wattendorf
          Army through various personnel billets. However,         espoused such a position while discussing the util-
          for those leaders at the tip of the spear, an academic   ity of a sociology program at USMA.31 They argue
          grounding in sociology may be the most efficient         that this was likely to be the goal of any sociology
          and useful collegiate specialization. Junior military    program in a professional school setting.
          officers who execute the Army’s core function
          would benefit from an increased understanding of         TheNeedforWarrior-Scholars
          social sciences, sociological concepts in particular.       Changes in the nature of warfare demand that junior
             Forward-deployed junior officers face a widen-        combat arms officers be warrior-scholars. The pro-
          ing array of relevant factors and need tools to orga-    fessional officer produced from a military educa-
          nize conditions and information to respond effec-        tion, complemented with a study of sociological

          MILITARY REVIEW   l   July-August 2001                                                                       85
concepts, is a warrior-scholar. This concept is a          why an effective military establishment must depend
variation of Segal’s soldier-statesman/soldier-            on military elite forces by “maintaining a proper
diplomat.32 Warriors must be scholars according to         balance between military technologists, heroic lead-
Segal, “the range of military activities that military     ers and military managers.”37 Characteristics of the
professionals will be called on to perform will be         latter two leader typologies comprise the definition
                                                           of the warrior-scholar.
                                                              In defining a constabulary force, Janowitz fore-
        Changes in the nature of war have                  saw a cadre of military elite leading subordinate
altered the skills required for its conduct, but the       officers whose duties place them in one of the three
ability to act decisively and employ coercion will         typologies.38 As junior officers rise in rank, the he-
  remain essential. The potential to employ                roic leader and military manager roles merge. As a
controlled violence provides validity to many              result, the most senior officers represent a balanced
     new military tasks captured under . . .               combination of these two types, while subordinates
MOOTW. Having established its credibility as a             continue to develop within one of the three distinct
   fighting force, the US Army now finds itself            typologies.39 The role of military technologists that
 more frequently engaged in actions such as                Janowitz describes remains largely unchanged to-
   humanitarian assistance, nationbuilding                 day, but the military manager and heroic leader roles
            and peace enforcement.                         have evolved. All combat arms officers must be-
                                                           come warrior-scholars by maintaining an internal
                                                           balance of heroic leader and military manager. The
broadened . . . [and] is likely to have political im-      Army has succeeded with warrior-scholars only at
plications at lower levels of organizational function-     the elite level. To be successful in the future, war-
ing.”33 This implies that the post-Cold War leaders        rior-scholars must exist at every chain-of-command
are scholars because their decisions and actions on        level.40 However, the need to develop junior offic-
future battlefields reflect deliberate thought and un-     ers as warrior-scholars renders traditional methods
derstanding of larger social and political relation-       of officer development obsolete.
ships. The understanding helps identify the second-
and third-order effects of decisions and actions.          TheTheoreticalApplicationofSociology
   Warrior characteristics are equally critical in post-      The development of “sociological imagination”
Cold War leaders—specifically, lower-echelon               provides direction for 21st-century leaders to apply
officers must remain capable of employing tradi-           sociology and better understand larger social rela-
tional military force. Suggesting that military            tionships.41 Modern persons often feel helpless, iso-
commanders on the ground will be confined to               lated and powerless to affect their own courses or
technical military and political matters in a peace-       circumstances. These people need more than infor-
keeping environment, for example, indicates a              mation: “in this Age of Fact, information often
failure to recognize operational ambiguity and             dominates their attention and overwhelms their
blended skills.34 It is important that peacekeepers        capacity to assimilate it. It is not only the skills of
assert themselves under fire or under pressure to          reason that they need—although their struggle to
forcibly keep combatants from harming others, for          acquire these often exhausts their limited moral en-
example, to “evacuate an area or to allow a convoy         ergy. What they need, and what they feel they need,
safe passage.”35                                           is a quality of mind that will help them to use infor-
   Past military missions have been successful with-       mation and to develop reason in order to achieve lu-
out warrior-scholars, but the absence did not include      cid summaries of what is going on in the world and
the entire military chain of command. In fact, sev-        of what may be happening within themselves.”42
eral scholars (most notably Morris Janowitz) have             The ability to obtain such understanding and rea-
suggested educating military elite forces that already     son is sociological imagination. A person develops
possess warrior-scholar values. Based on his re-           sociological imagination by recognizing the unique
search on senior Army officers, Janowitz maintains         or specific historical circumstances of a given soci-
that military professionals must be given a “candid        ety and their effect on actors while recognizing the
and realistic education about political matters” and       actor’s reciprocal effect, a process frequently ex-
follow career patterns that sensitize them to politi-      plained as understanding the intersection of history
cal and social consequences of military action.36          and biography. The knowledge gained from apply-
Early in the Cold War Janowitz explained how and           ing sociological imagination reduces an actor’s

86                                                                           July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
sense of helplessness and social isolation.43 People        sake of specific institution-building within a given
who do not see their roles in the larger social net-        social setting.49 In application, warrior-scholars seek
work become myopic and are easily misguided by              solutions to immediate situations of which they are
powerful elites seeking to further their own ambi-          a part, so officers need sociological training to un-
tions.44 Junior officers should apply sociological imagi-   derstand their environment as a larger system and,
nation to see an operation’s larger social operating
network and respond appropriately to their missions.
   Although the upper military echelons may assess                While institutional schools have made
a society from a nation-state perspective, a company         laudable efforts to broaden curricula to cover
commander performing humanitarian assistance for               MOOTW missions, they remain focused
a village must see that village as a society and act           primarily on their core functions. Budget
accordingly. Junior officers who apply sociological         constraints keep schools from developing the
imagination to the following three question sets can        reasoning skills and training to deal fully with
assess systematically various 21st-century situations          modern warfare’s ambiguous environment.
and societies they will confront:
   l What is the structure of the society as a whole?
What are its essential components and how do they           in turn, educate and serve its members. The com-
relate to one another? How does it differ from other        pany grade officer does this by applying sociologi-
social orders? Within it, what is the meaning of any        cal imagination—recognizing the history behind the
particular feature for its continuance and for its          current mission and the potential impact current ac-
change?                                                     tors have on its future. A focused sociological edu-
   l Where does this society stand in human his-
                                                            cation can provide combat arms officers with tools
tory? How is it changing? What is its place within          to effectively and efficiently reason through various
and its meaning for the development of humanity             conditions surrounding next-century missions.
as a whole? How do particular features affect the           SociologistsintheArmyToday
historical period in which they move, and how is it,           Developing warrior-scholars to meet the chang-
in turn, affected?                                          ing nature of warfare presupposes an increased need
   l What varieties of men and women prevail in             for them that the current officer accession system
this society and period? What varieties are coming          is not already filling. Measuring the presence of
to prevail? In what ways are they selected and formed,      these two conditions requires a longitudinal review.
liberated and repressed, made sensitive and blunted?45      Three representative periods provide a basis for ref-
   Answers to these questions provide insight into          erence:
a society, specifically the interaction between rel-           l 1987—the end of President Ronald Reagan’s
evant biographies and social histories. Sociological        defense buildup (late Cold War).
imagination visualizes a situation’s relevant vari-            l 1992—post-Cold War and Desert Storm.
ables by including participating actors and their              l 1997—contemporary reference.
perceptions in the algorithm. It allows critical               Comparing the number of soldiers deployed each
questioning without being aloof. In essence, socio-         fiscal year gauges varying US military involve-
logical imagination calls for transcending individu-        ment.50 Since the Cold War’s end, the US Army
alism without sacrificing it as a core value. Warrior-      has shifted from a forward-deployed force operat-
scholars can address social problems while being a          ing under a bipolar deterrence model to a force-
part of the society.                                        projection Army largely stationed in the Continen-
   This pragmatic use of sociology draws from a             tal United States (CONUS). Under the new strategy,
distinct domain within the discipline—consensual            the Army deploys overseas primarily for specific
sociology.46 The consensual approach follows a long         missions and then returns to CONUS.51 Given this
tradition of applying sociology to an audience out-         change and the absence of US involvement in for-
side academia.47 The warrior-scholar would apply            mal war during 1987, 1992 and 1997, the change
consensual sociology for practical solutions to spe-        in the number of deployed soldiers indicates relative
cific social problems using a methodology called the        US Army involvement in new, or nontraditional,
enlightenment model.48 Rather than developing spe-          forms of war. Under ideal conditions a proportional
cific cause-effect relationships capable of broader         change in the number of officers with sociological
generalization (the engineering model), the en-             training would match the Army’s involvement in
lightenment model works at problem solving for the          nontraditional forms of war.

MILITARY REVIEW    l   July-August 2001                                                                         87
   As the Army has drawn down and shifted to                  The PME System has responded to 21st-century
force projection, the aggregate number of de-              challenges by updating its curriculum and resources,
ployed soldiers has actually declined over the past 10     but these efforts typically do not develop officers
years.52 However, the number and percentage of sol-        until at least the senior captain level. Because peace-
diers deployed outside US territories (for reasons         keeping efforts are effective only as long as the
other than NATO, Korea and Japan) have con-                peacekeeping force remains able to operate in the
sistently increased—roughly doubling every five            full spectrum of conflict, combat arms officer ba-
                                                           sic and advance courses remain grounded in tradi-
                                                           tional functions. While institutional schools have
          One course of action has each                    made laudable efforts to broaden curricula to cover
 officer becoming versed in both engineering               MOOTW missions, they remain focused primarily
   and humanities, while an alternative has                on their core functions. Budget constraints keep
 officers training deeply in a single field with           schools from developing the reasoning skills and
a topical knowledge of the other. The balance              training to deal fully with modern warfare’s ambigu-
 in education may not come from training                   ous environment. Because initial PME schools cur-
  individuals but through an officer corps                 rently cannot address new officers’ 21st-century
   comprised of widely assorted specialists.               educational needs and advanced PME schools oc-
                                                           cur too late in an officer’s career, precommissioning
                                                           education becomes critical.
years. New diplomatic obligations explain only a              The Army currently assesses officers through
small portion of this trend since few officers are         OCS, USMA and ROTC programs at colleges and
assigned to embassy duty. A nearly three-fold in-          universities across the country. Each candidate has
crease in nontreaty deployments clearly demon-             a contractual obligation to obtain a baccalaureate
strates increased soldier involvement in nontradi-         degree, and the Army should increasingly specify
tional forms of warfare, a condition that greatly          the courses. The idea of increasing specificity in
supports the call for warrior-scholars.                    precommissioning education is not new. Service
   The Army needs to assess whether it has already         academy curricula heavy in science, math and en-
responded to mission-profile changes by increasing         gineering produce military leaders and top techni-
the number of sociologically trained officers. Poten-      cians to deal with rapid technological change.54
tially, the institution, as part of a larger social sys-   Unfortunately, hard science addresses only one as-
tem, may have already adjusted and could be                pect of change on a narrow front. USMA provides
developing warrior-scholars without deliberate inter-      approximately 25 percent of all new active duty
vention. Comparing the number of officers holding          Army officers. Additionally, a heavy academic fo-
a degree in sociology as of 30 September (1987,            cus on the hard sciences addresses but one of two
1992 and 1997) helps assess whether the Army’s             significant changes in warfare—technology. The
accession program has already responded to the new         need for further change is apparent at USMA, for
battlefield.53 Under the former PME System, hav-           the dean’s academic goals clearly indicate a need
ing a sociology degree did not guarantee that of-          for increased understanding of culture and human
ficers served in warrior-scholar positions or that         behavior.55 Overall, the social and cultural aspects
they applied sociological imagination. These limi-         of MOOTW missions and future war lacks system-
tations aside, it is still important to explore whether    atic treatment under PME, especially at the precom-
the accessions process has responded to the in-            missioning level.
creased need for sociologists serving in even a lim-          College classes grounded in the humanities may
ited capacity.                                             raise the old debate about whether to value breadth
   Despite the increased need for warrior-scholars,        or depth. Dick Cheney notes that “the right balance
the officer accessions program has not responded           between educational paths that stress a broader, lib-
with a matching induction of sociologists. The to-         eral arts background versus educational paths that
tal number of officer sociologists has declined as         focus on science, math and engineering promises
part of the drawdown, but more important, the per-         to prove one of the greatest challenges to the PME
centage of sociologists has remained relatively con-       system.”56 One course of action has each officer
stant at less than one and a half percent. The Army’s      becoming versed in both engineering and humani-
officer accessions program has not responded to            ties, while an alternative has officers training deeply
warfare changes by providing more officers with            in a single field with a topical knowledge of the
sociological training from which warrior-scholars          other. The balance in education may not come
can be developed.                                          from training individuals but through an officer

88                                                                           July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
corps comprised of widely assorted specialists.                                           in 1850 made training in some disciplines more
  While the Center for Strategic and International                                        relevant than others, 21st-century warfare demands
Studies panel spoke of education in terms of the                                          training in specific, albeit different, disciplines.
humanities and hard sciences, actual changes require                                      Sociology is an academic field with great tactical
greater specificity. Just as the conditions of warfare                                    value to modern leaders in MOOTW.

    1. Gerry Gilmore, “Panels: Army to Re-emphasize Leadership Principles,” Army          University, held in Williamsburg, Virginia, 8-11 November 1998.
News Service (Washington, DC: US Army Public Affairs, 11 September 1997);                    27. William Thompson, “The Future of Transitional Warfare,” The Adaptive Mili-
John Mikos, “New Officer Evaluation Reporting System,” in General (GEN) Den-              tary: Armed Forces in a Turbulent World, 87-114.
nis J. Reimer, CSA Weekly Summary No. 96-50, released for distribution via e-                28. Headquarters, Department of the Army, Management Directorate, Leading
mail, 18 December 1996.                                                                   Change: Modular Briefing on Total Army Quality (Alexandria, VA: Office of the Chief
    2. In this article, we define combat arms as those elements whose mission-            of Staff, US Army, 1998).
essential tasks put them in direct contact with the other central actors of the mis-         29. Diane Foley and Alma Steinberg, “Operation Joint Endeavor: Research
sion. In 21st-century operations, central actors’ activities could range from armed       Project and Final Report,” Army Research Institute Special Report 38 (Alexandria,
adversaries in a traditional combat role to assisting refugees in a humanitarian          VA: US Army Research Institute for the Behavioral and Social Sciences, 1998).
mission.                                                                                     30. Allan Johnson, Blackwell Dictionary of Sociology: Users Guide to Sociological
    3. Dick Cheney, “Professional Military Education: An Asset for Peace and              Language (Cambridge, MA: Blackwell Publishers Inc., 1995), 269.
Progress,” A Report of the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS)             31. Mady Wechsler Segal, David R. Segal and John M. Wattendorf, “The Soci-
Study Group on Professional Military Education, ed. Bill Taylor (Washington, DC:          ology Program in a Professional School Setting: The United States Military Acad-
CSIS, March 1997), 1.                                                                     emy,” Teaching Sociology, 1990, 56.
    4. Ibid., 60.                                                                            32. David R. Segal, Organizational Designs for the Future Army (Alexandria, VA:
    5. Martin Van Creveld, The Training of Officers (New York, NY: The Free               US Army Research Institute, 1993).
Press, 1990); J. Crackel, “The Founding of West Point—Jefferson and the Poli-                33. Ibid., 39.
tics of Security,” Armed Forces and Society, 7, 1980, 529-44; Morris Janowitz,               34. Christopher Dandeker and James Gow, “The Future of Peace Support Op-
The Professional Soldier (New York, NY: The Free Press, 1971).                            erations: Strategic Peacekeeping and Success,” Armed Forces and Society, 1997,
    6. John W. Masland and Laurence Radway, Soldiers and Scholars: Military               327-48.
Education and National Policy (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1957);             35. Fred A. Mael, Robert N. Kilcullen and Leonard A. White, “Soldier Attributes
James Shelburne and Kenneth Groves, Education in the Armed Forces (New York:              for Peacekeeping and Peacemaking,” Reserve Component Soldiers as Peacekeep-
The Center for Applied Research in Education Inc., 1965); John P. Lovell, “The            ers, eds. Ruth H. Phelps and Beatrice J. Farr (Alexandria, VA: US Army Research
Service Academies in Transition: Continuity and Change,” The System of Edu-               Institute for the Behavioral and Social Sciences, 1996), 43.
cating Military Officers in the US, ed. Lawrence J. Korb (Pittsburgh, PA: Interna-           36. Janowitz, 428.
tional Studies Association, University of Pittsburgh, 1976), 35-50.                          37. Ibid., 424.
    7. Van Creveld.                                                                          38. Ibid., 6, “the highest ranking officer” most capable of directing and influenc-
    8. Andrew Abbott, The System of Professions (Chicago, IL: University of Chi-          ing others.
cago Press, 1988).                                                                           39. Ibid., 425.
    9. Shelburne and Groves, 54.                                                             40. Military technologists were a distinct population by virtue of traditional re-
   10. Ibid.                                                                              sistance to their innovative efforts to integrate new technology. Current research
   11. Changes in instruction as a consequence of technical advances in warfare           can determine whether such resistance still exists.
occurred) regularly.                                                                         41. C. Wright Mills, “The Sociological Imagination: The Promise,” Down to Earth
   12. Masland and Radway.                                                                Sociology: Introductory Readings, 9th edition, ed. J. Hensling, 1997 (New York,
   13. Ibid., 81.                                                                         NY: The Free Press, originally published in 1959), 19-26. Ironically, Mills severely
   14. Ibid.                                                                              questioned the collective military, as well as political and corporate elites, as dis-
   15. Ibid.                                                                              tinct members of the power elite.
   16. William P. Snyder, “Leaders for the Volunteer Force: Problems and Pros-               42. Ibid., 20-21.
pects for ROTC,” in The System of Educating Military Officers in the US, ed.                 43. Ibid.
Lawrence J. Korb (Pittsburgh, PA: International Studies Association, Occasional              44. C. Wright Mills, The Causes of World War Three (New York, NY: Simon and
Paper No. 9, 1976).                                                                       Schuster, 1958).
   17. Masland and Radway; Janowitz, 1971.                                                   45. Mills, “The Sociological Imagination,” 22.
   18. Masland and Radway, 104.                                                              46. Edward Shils, “The Calling of Sociology,” The Calling of Sociology and Other
   19. Snyder, 72; Shelburne and Groves, 54; ROTC, “ROTC History (Unofficial),”           Essays in the Pursuit of Learning (Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 1980),
The ROTC Heritage, 30 January 1999, <                      80. Most often sociologists are thought of as working in either the technological
shist01.htm> accessed 18 April 2001.                                                      mode—serving the government by assessing social policy—or the oppositional
   Beginning in 1909 a few ROTC graduates were granted Regular Army commis-               mode—seeking to expose deficiencies of the elite. Neither approach directly serves
sions, but these numbers, up until the Korean War, relegated ROTC to a militia            junior military officers.
service.                                                                                     47. Ibid.
   20. Snyder, 72; “ROTC History.” ROTC is now the largest commissioning source              48. Ibid., 91-92. Consensual sociology is a substantive type of sociological in-
of career officers—those intending to serve longer than the minimum commitment.           vestigation that cannot be wholly absorbed into the scientific and theoretical types
   21. Shelburne and Groves. Likewise, the Army realized that increasingly tech-          of academic sociology.
nical and complex weapons required all officers to have a college education.                 49. Morris Janowitz, “Theory and Policy: Engineering versus Enlightenment Mod-
Thus, OCS shifted from a commissioning source for skilled enlisted soldiers to            els,” Morris Janowitz on Social Organization and Social Control, ed. James Burk
another commissioning method for college graduates from within and outside the            (Chicago, IL: The University of Chicago Press, 1991), 86-95.
service.                                                                                     50. Department of Defense, Headquarters Service Directorate of Information
   22. Masland and Radway.                                                                Operations and Reports, Active Duty Military Personnel Strengths by Region, Area
   23. USMA’s ability to produce Army officers with the requisite skills for the artil-   and Country, <>, 1999.
lery and engineer branches illustrates this very point.                                      51. From a regional or macro perspective, the number of soldiers stationed
   24. GEN Dennis J. Reimer, Chief of Staff, US Army, 99-01 Random Thoughts               abroad as permanent liaisons in diplomatic posts is assumed to be relatively con-
While Running, e-mail, Subject: As we close out 1998 and enter calendar year              stant or inconsequential.
1999, 1 January 1999; Douglas MacGregor, Breaking the Phalanx (West Port, CT:                52. The force-projection readiness posture maintains most of the Army’s com-
Praeger Publishers, 1997).                                                                bat divisions in CONUS and deploys units as needed. This condition stands in
   25. Reimer, 99-02 Random Thoughts While Running, e-mail, Subject: Senior               contrast to the forward-deployed Army of the Cold War, which placed combat di-
Leaders Training Conference at Camp Robinson, Alaska, 26 January 1999.                    visions in anticipated theaters of operation such as Germany.
   26. “Thinking Through the End of the Cold War,” The Adaptive Military: Armed              53. Army Research Institute-accessed official military personnel files maintained
Forces in a Turbulent World, ed. James Burk, (New Brunswick, NJ: Transaction              by the Deputy Chief of Staff for Personnel, USMA,West Point, New York in 1999.
Publishers, 1998), 25-48; James Burk, What We Should Know About Armed                        54. Cheney, 27.
Forces in Democratic Societies, remarks prepared for the Defense Education                   55. Office of the Dean, USMA, Educating Army Leaders for the 21st Century
Agenda in the Americas: New Challenges for Teaching and Research Conference               Army (West Point, NY: USMA Academic Board and Office of the Dean, 1998).
sponsored by the Center for Hemispheric Defense Studies, National Defense                    56. Cheney, 60.

                          Major Scott L. Efflandt is executive officer, 2-12 Cavalry, 2d Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division,
                       Fort Hood, Texas. He received a B.S. from Southern Illinois University and an M.S. from Texas
                       A&M University and is a graduate of the US Army Command and General Staff College. He
                       has served in various command and staff positions, including instructor, Behavioral Science
                       and Leadership Department, United States Military Academy (USMA), West Point, New York;
                       and commander, B Troop, 1st Squadron, 3d Armored Cavalry Regiment, Fort Carson, Colorado.
                          Major Brian J. Reed is operations officer, 1-22 Infantry, 1st Brigade, 4th Infantry Division,
                       Fort Hood, Texas. He received a B.S. from USMA and an M.A. from the University of Mary-
                       land and is a graduate of the US Army Command and General Staff College. He has served in
                       various command and staff positions, including instructor, Behavioral Science and Leadership
                       Department, USMA, West Point, New York; and commander, Company A, 2d Battalion, 27th
                       Infantry, 25th Infantry Division, Schofield Barracks, Hawaii.

MILITARY REVIEW               l   July-August 2001                                                                                                                         89
Reassessing Strategy: A Historical Examination
Lieutenant Colonel Dominic J. Caraccilo, US Army
   In The Art of War, Sun Tzu says         put down a rebellion and return the          reaction to a possible change in
that “[v]ictory smiles upon those          colonies to the desired status quo.          battle would have been detrimental
who anticipate the changes in the             Sun Tzu would have criticized the         to the military situation in Korea and
character of war, not upon those           British for not considering in the pre-      to international diplomacy. There-
who wait to adapt themselves after         war planning process the colonials’          fore, while it is important to have
the changes occur.”1 Antoine Henri         will to resist and ability to prevail. He    preplanned, rehearsed contingen-
Jomini, Carl von Clausewitz and Sun        would have told the British to antici-       cies, it is equally important to reas-
Tzu—masters of war strategy—offer          pate French and Spanish forces’ join-        sess situations continually and
timeless views of the face of battle.      ing the battle. In short, he would           adapt to changes as they occur.
   Clauswitz argues that perfect pre-      have suggested that the British                 With the US and South Korean
war planning for contingencies is          needed a better scriptwriter.                armies forced into the Pusan Perim-
difficult, if not impossible, because of      Shooting British subjects would           eter and the Chinese threatening to
the fog of war. To anticipate the full     not win colonial hearts and minds. If        join the war, the possibility of using
array of possibilities of changes and      they had ascertained that using force        nuclear weapons was real. How-
plan a way to adapt to all of them is,     would do nothing more than nour-             ever, the US ability to reevaluate
at least, futile. Therefore, the strate-   ish the rebellion and recognized that        the situation and adapt to real-time
gist and his enamored tactician must       force was detrimental to their cause,        changes prevented it. US Army
be able to properly assess the situ-       the British could have designed              General Douglas MacArthur, re-
ation, given wartime realities, and        courses of action to counter colonial        evaluating his possible courses of
adapt to battlefield changes. Revis-       reaction. They could have deter-             action, chose the bold, impressive
ing the strategic net assessment is a      mined whether it was more feasible           Inchon landing, which curtailed the
first step on the road to victory.         to go for the decisive blow or to ac-        North Korean advance.
   Clausewitz states, “Friction, as we     cept a colonial independence while
choose to call it, is the force that       maintaining a prominent economic             TheAlgerianInsurgency
makes the apparently easy so diffi-        existence. While the British did not            In 1954, Algeria’s ruling party, the
cult.”2 Idealistically, a strategist       believe they would have to resort to         Front de Liberation Nationale
wants to anticipate and plan contin-       force to put down what they viewed           (FLN), attempted a Maoist-type in-
gencies so as to conquer all changes       as a weak rebellion, shedding blood          surgency in Algeria against French
in the character of war. Sun Tzu in-       at the onset should have led them to         occupation forces.6 No doubt the
dicates that good intelligence makes       reconsider their strategy.4                  FLN anticipated French reaction to
it possible to predict the outcome of         Ideally, it would be great if the         insurgent activities, but it failed to
a war in battle. However, Clausewitz       strategist could foresee all changes         plan for changes caused by the fric-
says, “[T]he very nature of interac-       that might occur. But, even Sun Tzu          tion and fog of war.
tion is bound to make [war] unpre-         would not argue against the fact                Initially, FLN actions appeared to
dictable.”3 History is rich with ex-       that it is nearly impossible to flaw-        have failed. No popular uprising fol-
amples which show that prewar              lessly script an entire campaign. Be-        lowed the November 1954 revolt,
plans do not directly relate to war-       cause of such uncertainty, prewar            and the French military remained in
time realities. Strategists’ ability or    plans are always marginal, at best.          power. However, the FLN had wisely
inability to reassess and adapt to                                                      reevaluated the situation and ad-
volatile changes—the friction and          TheKoreanWar                                 justed its focus, converting its tactics
fog of war—played key roles in the            The character of the war in Korea         to attacking—successfully—French
American Revolution, the Korean            could have led to US use of nuclear          political and social vulnerabilities.
War and in the Algerian insurgency.        weapons to prevent communist Chi-               Ironically, the French inability to
                                           nese intervening between the North           properly reevaluate the situation
TheAmericanRevolution                      and South Koreans.5 Considering              helped the FLN succeed. Reassess-
   During the American Revolution,         the inability to anticipate changes in       ment was critical, especially when
the British had a prewar plan of us-       the character of war, it is question-        the French continually failed to gain
ing coercive measures to force colo-       able whether Sun Tzu or Clausewitz           Muslim support. The French contin-
nists to capitulate to British empirical   would have decided to play the               ued to believe that if they could de-
and parliamentary rule. The prewar         nuclear trump card.                          feat the FLN operationally they
British plan was seemingly simple—            Arguably, a preplanned nuclear            could end the insurgency. They were

90                                                                                     July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
                                                                                                                                        A LMANAC
wrong. Had they reassessed the situ-        no dictum and no proven solution                         insurgency in Algeria (Indianapolis: Indiana University
                                                                                                     Press, 1972), chapters 2 through 7, 12 and 16.
ation, they would have realized that        for success in war. But, reassess-                          7. Michael I. Handel, Masters of War (London:
                                                                                                     Frank Cass, 1992), 141.
reforms and an offer of indepen-            ment caveats the best prewar plans
dence would have won the                    to match desired wartime realities.
Maghrib’s support.                          Past wars show that leaders who an-                            Lieutenant Colonel Dominic J.
                                            ticipate changes are leaders who                            Caraccilo is the Regimental Plans
CommonSense                                                                                             Officer, 75th Ranger Regiment, Fort
                                            lead their forces to victory.                               Benning, Georgia. He received a
   Ideally, strategists would be able                                                                   B.S. from the US Military Academy,
to foresee all possible contingencies.                           NOTES                                  an M.S. from Cornell University,
However, while it is important to an-          1. Sun Tzu, The Art of War (Boston, MA: Shambala         an M.A. from the Naval War Col-
                                            Publications, 1988), 125.
ticipate changes, it is also imperative        2. Carl von Clausewitz, On War (Princeton, NJ:           lege and is a graduate of the US
to reassess and adapt strategy con-         Princeton University Press, 1989), 121.                     Navy Command and Staff College
                                               3. Ibid., 117.
tinually to meet each situation’s de-          4. The Center of Military History, “The American         and the US Army Command and
                                            Revolution: First Phase,” in American Military History      General Staff College. He has held
mands. Author Michael Handel                (Washington, DC: US Government Printing Office,
                                                                                                        various command and staff posi-
writes: “[E]very war is rich in unique      1989), 58-67.
                                               5. John Lewis Gaddis, Strategies of Containment          tions in the Continental United
episodes. Each is an uncharted              (New York: Oxford University Press, 1982), chapters 2
                                            and 3.
                                                                                                        States, Europe and Saudi Arabia.
sea.”7 Therefore, there is no theorem,         6. Alf Andrew Heggoy, Insurgency and Counter-

ULUS-KERT: An Airborne Company’s Last Stand
Sergeant Michael D. Wilmoth, US Army Reserve, and
Lieutenant Colonel Peter G. Tsouras, US Army Reserve, Retired
   In four days of desperate fight-                                                                  shouts of “Allah Akhbar!” the Rus-
ing, from 29 February to 3 March                                                                     sians would respond, “Christ is
2000, a large force of Chechen fight-                                                                Risen!”
ers wiped out a Russian paratroop                                                                       After Groznyy fell, Chechen forces
company in the harsh defiles and                                                                     regrouped in the rough, mountain-
ridges of the Argun Gorge in the                                                                     ous areas of southern Chechnya. By
mountains of southern Chechnya.                                                                      late February, a large Chechen force
Although the battle was a cata-                                                                      of from 1,600 and 2,500 fighters had
strophic tactical defeat for the                                                                     concentrated in the town of Ulus-
Russian airborne force, the                                                                          Kert, where the Abazolgul and Sharo-
company’s stubborn defense to                                                                        argun rivers join.1 The area was one
the last man and the concentra-                                                                      in which the Russians had not dared
tion of Russian relief forces in-                                                                    enter during the First Chechen War.
flicted a strategic setback on the                                                                   This time, they did not hesitate to
Chechens. The Russians stumbled                                                                      follow.
into this catastrophe through poor                                                                      A Russian Airborne Forces (VDV)
unit leadership, but Russian blood                                                                   tactical group attacked Chechen
and valor transformed it into victory.                                                               forces at Ulus-Kert, forcing them
                                                                                                     southeast. One of the VDV tactical
HatredtotheBone                                                                                      group’s regimental task forces,
   In Fall 1999, the Second Chechen                                                                  based on the 104th Guards Para-
War began. The Russian Army                                                                          chute Regiment (GPR) of the 76th
sought to reimpose the Russian                                                                        Guards Airborne Division (GAD),
Federation’s authority in lawless,                                                                     was to block the gorge while the
breakaway Chechnya. The Rus-                                                                           VDV tactical group encircled the
sians and Chechens’ shared 200-                                                                      Chechens.
year history had been punctuated            horrific. This second round was the
by convulsions of blood and cru-            Russian Army’s opportunity to                            AreaofOperations
elty. The First Chechen War, from           show that it had recovered some-                            The small town of Ulus-Kert is
1994 to 1996, had ended in the Rus-         thing of its former ability.                             surrounded by extremely steep,
sian Army’s humiliation and left               Nothing expressed the depth of                        mountainous terrain. Approximately
Russia with its highest loss of re-         Russian-Chechen animosity more                           6 kilometers south of the town and
sources and professionalism since           than the battle cries hurled back and                    extending far to the southeast are the
the Soviet Union’s demise. The loss         forth across the firing lines during                     Dargenduk Mountains. A road lead-
of basic combat skills also had been        the siege of Groznyy. To the Chechen                     ing generally south out of Ulus-Kert

MILITARY REVIEW      l   July-August 2001                                                                                                              91
and up the northeastern edge of the       forces and ground forces. Histori-          ward the southeast. 104th GPR’s 1st
Dargenduks crosses over a 1,410-          cally, the VDV had been a separate          Company, 1st Airborne Battalion,
meter hill, referred to as Hill 1410.     service. Briefly in the late 1990s, it      still had not crossed either the
Approximately 1.5 kilometers directly     had been subordinated to ground             Abazolgul or the Sharoargun. An
southeast of Ulus-Kert is Hill 705.6.     forces. Newly appointed commander           unidentified 104th GPR company
Just about one-half kilometer south       of Russian airborne forces Colonel          was on or near Hill 705.6. 4th Com-
of Hill 705.6 is a narrow opening to      General Georgiy Shpak had obtained          pany and an unidentified 104th GPR
a small gorge. Three and one-half kil-    a reversal of this decision and zeal-       airborne company, two VDV SPETS-
ometers southeast of Ulus-Kert, on        ously guarded the VDV’s indepen-            NAZ groups and an elite Federal
the gorge’s easternmost side, is Hill     dence.                                      Security Service (FSB)—successor
776. Hill 787 is only 1 kilometer far-        Shpak streamlined the organiza-         to the KGB—SPETSNAZ group,
ther south.                               tion and obtained new missions for          known as Vympel, were on Hill
   A road leading southeast from          it, primarily in peacekeeping opera-        1410. Present at 2d Airborne Battal-
Ulus-Kert over Hill 705.6 turns south     tions. By the time operations around        ion Headquarters on Hill 776 were
into the gorge. Another road inter-       Ulus-Kert were under way, the               Commander, 2d Airborne Battalion,
sects the first then leads to the west-   grouping of airborne forces had             Lieutenant Colonel Mark Niko-
ern edge of the saddle between hills      been subordinated to Colonel Gen-           layevich Yevtyukhin, and Captain
776 and 787 where it divides into         eral Gennadiy N. Troshev, Com-              Viktor Romanov, the commander of
mountain paths crossing the saddle.       mander of the Eastern Grouping of           an artillery battery of the regimental
Hill 787 is approximately 4.3 kilome-     Federal Forces, who reported di-            artillery battalion who was heading a
ters north of Hill 1410. At the time of   rectly to General of the Army Viktor        forward observer team. 6th Com-
the operation, the weather was            Kazantsev, who commanded the                pany, commanded by Major Sergey
foggy and cold, with snow on the          Operations Group, Joint Grouping            Molodov, was en route to the saddle
ground.                                   of Federal Forces, in the North             between Hills 776 and 787. 104th
   The Chechens planned to escape         Caucasus. The arrangement was not           GPR was engaged in positioning
advancing Russian forces by using         a happy one; airborne forces felt           companies to block escape routes
the advantage of the mountainous          they were not being properly sup-           over the mountains.
terrain southeast of Ulus-Kert. After     ported.3                                       The Chechen force, retreating to
slipping through the passes, the                                                      the southeast of Ulus-Kert along a
fighters could seize the strategic        TheBattleBegins                             road leading over Hill 705.6 away
population centers of Makhkety,              The VDV tactical group was a             from the main advancing body of the
Elistanzhi, Zaduli, Kirov-Yurt and        task force based on divisional para-        VDV tactical group, was looking for
Vedeno, which provided a west-to-         chute regiments augmented with              the first unguarded or weakly held
east corridor in relatively low, flat     VDV command-level assets, such as           way over the mountains. The 1,600
terrain through which remaining           reconnaissance subunits. The 104th          to 2,500 fighters wore winter camou-
Chechen forces could withdraw to          GPR task force was assigned the             flage and were well equipped with
Dagestan.2 From Dagestan, they            mission of blocking Chechen escape          various small arms, grenade launch-
could renew the struggle on more fa-      routes east through the mountains.          ers and mortars. They were sup-
vorable terms.                            104th GPR, like most Soviet/Russian         ported by a logistics train of hun-
   The VDV tactical group’s mission       parachute regiments, had three air-         dreds of pack animals.
was to counter the Chechen force’s        borne battalions, an artillery battalion
objectives by blocking its escape         equipped with two S9, 120-millimeter,       Day 1, 29 February 2000
through the mountains then encir-         self-propelled guns and various                Early on 29 February, a 104th GPR
cling it so artillery and combat air      support assets. Each airborne battal-       airborne company encountered a
support could be used. Engaging in-       ion had three airborne companies            significant Chechen force on the
fantry soldiers in direct combat was      numbered sequentially one through           road leading southeast out of Ulus-
to be kept to a minimum. The plan to      nine, with the first, second and third      Kert. Russian paratroopers engaged
encircle Chechen forces—a common          companies composing the 1st Air-            the Chechen fighters for control of
Russian tactic—reflects the Rus-          borne Battalion and so on. Each 104th       Hill 705.6. The Russian company,
sians’ desire to minimize casualties.     GPR company was augmented with              significantly stressed during the
   The First Chechen War had not          reconnaissance and/or SPETSNAZ              fight, gained control of the hill and
been popular with the Russian popu-       subunits from the VDV command to            pushed the Chechen force southeast
lace because of the high death rate.      form company tactical groups.4              into the small gorge below. The com-
Tension was also rife in the Russian         Hills 705.6, 776, 787 and 1410 were      pany was most likely heavily sup-
command arrangement. Airborne             the main features of the net 104th          ported by artillery and helicopters,
forces felt they were being used as       GPR used to encircle the Chechen            as was the usual Russian operation
cannon fodder to reduce casualties        force. The VDV tactical group’s main        in this war.
among motorized infantry troops.          body crossed the Sharoargun and                The 104th GPR commander or-
Underlying this tension was the old       Abazolgul rivers, pushing the               dered 2d Airborne Battalion elements
rivalry between Russian airborne          Chechen force out of Ulus-Kert to-          to block the saddle between hills 776

92                                                                                   July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
                                                                                                                A LMANAC
and 787, which was the next pos-           saddle and attacked from the rear          mander Major Aleksandr Dostovalov,
sible path over the mountains for          where there were no defenses.9             with 4th Company’s third platoon,
the Chechens. The 2d Airborne              With Chechens in the rear and no           broke through to the encircled com-
Battalion headquarters was already         escape routes through their own            pany. While relief forces were being
in place on Hill 776. The 2d Airborne      minefield, 6th Company pulled back         held back by ambushes, waves of
Battalion element was to be in place       and dug in on Hill 776. Their retreat      Chechen fighters continued to as-
by 1400. In the early morning, 6th         was so precipitous that they aban-         sault 6th Company on Hill 776.14
Company, including the third pla-          doned mess kits still full of food.10      When Romanov’s legs were blown
toon, 4th Company, and two recon-             Chechen fighters, laying down           off by a mortar round, the battalion
naissance groups, probably from the        constant fire on 6th Company, re-          commander took over.
regimental reconnaissance platoon,         ceived reinforcements as the main              While some reports question the
started on foot toward the saddle.5        body arrived. The force encircled 6th      lack of artillery and combat air sup-
   6th Company, with the other ele-        Company and sent waves of fight-           port, others indicate that both where
ments, minus the company’s third           ers into the attack.11 By the end of       present throughout the four-day
platoon, arrived by late morning,          the first day, 6th Company had suf-        engagement. In his report to de-
ahead of schedule. The company             fered 31 dead—a 33 percent killed in       fense minister Igor Sergeyev, Shpak
commander established a linear de-         action (KIA) rate.12 6th Company           states that 2d Airborne Battalion
fense in the saddle between the hills,     had barely survived three basic er-        “was supported by a self-propelled
fronted by a minefield facing west         rors: failure to establish an all-         artillery battalion of the 104th Para-
toward the gorge. The defense fo-          around defense; failure to aggres-         chute Regiment and by army avia-
cused on the Chechen forces’ ex-           sively conduct reconnaisance of the        tion.”15 The presence of an artillery
pected direction of escape. No ac-         enemy’s expected approach route,           forward team with 6th Company,
cess routes through the minefield          especially given the Chechen repu-         which included a battery commander,
were prepared nor were platoon po-         tation for tactical skill, reconnaisance   indicates that artillery support was
sitions sited to be mutually support-      and working around the flanks; and         at least adequate. While Shpak’s
ive.6 After establishing company po-       failure to heed warnings about the         statement and other reports make it
sitions, troops began their afternoon      Chechen force’s approach.13                certain that VDV artillery was em-
meal, leaving their positions and             For some reason, 6th Company            ployed throughout the engagement,
congregating in the open.7                 did not anticipate with sufficient se-     it is unclear how effective it was at re-
   The Chechen force clearly had a         riousness and energy the danger it         ducing Chechen numbers. Also un-
better grasp of the situation. The         had been assigned to forestall. It         answered is whether additional artil-
fighters had been listening to 104th       seems likely that weak command at          lery assets were employed to support
GPR communications and used this           the company level was compounded           6th Company.
advantage and good ground recon-           by a lack of timely supervision by             Press reports also cite use of
naissance to locate 104th GPR sub-         the adjacent battalion headquarters.       “Grads”—122-millimeter BM-21 mul-
units and to set ambushes. At 1230,                                                   tiple-rocket launchers that VDV units
a 6th Company reconnaissance pa-           Day 2, 1 March 2000                        do not have.16 Accounts of other
trol encountered approximately 20             Early in the morning on Hill 1410,      engagements in the southern moun-
fighters just outside company defen-       a reinforcement group of two VDV           tains show that the Russians em-
sive positions. That the Chechens          SPETSNAZ platoons, one Vympel              ployed available artillery from a num-
could approach that close without          SPETSNAZ group and two airborne            ber of units in coordination with
detection shows that the Russians          companies departed on foot for the         army aviation helicopters. These ac-
had conducted no deep reconnais-           saddle. The group encountered sev-         counts stress that artillery continued
sance of the approaches to the             eral ambushes while traversing terrain     to fire when helicopters disappeared
saddle.                                    as steep as 70 degrees. At approxi-        with daylight. Only one Russian hel-
   The Chechens, armed with auto-          mately 0330, one VDV SPETSNAZ              icopter in the Chechen theater had
matic weapons, grenade launchers           platoon broke through to Hill 787 but      night capability. This supports
and mortars, reacted quickly, seizing      was forced to dig in because of stiff      Shpak’s statement that 6th Company
the initiative. The small force was        Chechen opposition.                        received no aviation support at
probably followed by a combat ele-            The 1st Company was also sent           night. Helicopter support was further
ment, which would have been con-           to reinforce 6th Company. While at-        limited by foggy conditions during
sistent with Soviet-style reconnais-       tempting to cross the Abazolgul            the fighting.17
sance doctrine that places great           River northeast of Ulus-Kert, the              The Chechens continued heavy
value on immediately seizing the ini-      unit encountered a Chechen ambush          attacks on Hill 776 from all directions
tiative in any engagement by having        force of up to 60 men. Despite re-         throughout the early morning. Para-
a strong combat element close be-          peated attempts to fight through the       trooper officers showed an unhesi-
hind the advance reconnaissance            Chechen ambush, the 1st Company            tating willingness to sacrifice them-
ele-ment.8 Chechen reconnaissance          was forced to dig in on the river’s        selves, a trait the Germans had
elements also worked their way             bank. At 0300, during a brief lull, 2d     frequently noted in the grandfathers
around the Russian position in the         Airborne Battalion deputy com-             of the men on the hill. Dostovalov,

MILITARY REVIEW     l   July-August 2001                                                                                   93
already wounded, attacked a group           Force your way forward.”20 With the      6th Company allowed VDV forces to
of Chechens trying to carry off a           remnants of 6th Company still hold-      fight through difficult terrain and
wounded soldier and dispatched              ing out on Hill 776 and new Russian      Chechen ambushes to close off the
them with a grenade. Junior soldiers        forces on neighboring Hill 787, the      main body’s escape. Most surviving
were equally valiant. After Private         Chechen escape route was danger-         Chechens were ultimately forced
Aleksandr Lebedev ran out of am-            ously constricted. The Russians          back into the gorge, where troops
munition, he threw himself and his          sent a reconnaissance platoon into       from 104th GPR took a number of
last live grenade into a group of           the saddle to find a better position.    prisoners.
Chechens who had wanted him to              Instead, it found an ambush by Arab          While no 6th Company personnel
surrender.                                  volunteers, covering an attempt by       surrendered or were taken prisoner,
   At approximately 0500, the Chech-        the main Chechen convoy to escape.       the four-day struggle resulted in the
ens breached 6th Company de-                Having suffered five wounded, the        death of at least 84 VDV soldiers, in-
fenses. Cumulative casualties and           Russians committed another com-          cluding 13 officers. Even after losing
odds of at least 10 to one were too         pany, hoping to stop the Chechen         its senior officers, 6th Company held
much for the dwindling Russian              escape attempt.21                        its final positions against a much
force. As Chechens overran Hill 776,                                                 larger force.
fighting became hand-to-hand, and           Day 3, 2 March 2000                          Chechen casualties included ap-
Chechens began shooting wounded                Late in the morning, the 1st Com-     proximately 400 dead. According to
Russians. The already wounded               pany broke through Chechen forces        Krasnaya Zvezda, the official news-
battalion commander took over the           and reached the battle area. How-        paper of the Russian Ministry of
radio from the wounded Romanov              ever, it could not relieve 6th Com-      Defense (MOD), this figure was
and called in artillery fire on his         pany, which was still under close at-    based on radio-intercept data, intel-
own position, shouting into the ra-         tack. One officer and 32 men were        ligence reports, eyewitnesses, local
dio, “I call artillery on myself!”18        still alive. Deputy company com-         residents and captured Chechens.25
The Chechens suffered grievously            mander Captain Roman Sokolov had             The Arab volunteers fighting
from the artillery, and at 0610, com-       arrived in Chechnya barely 13 days       with the Chechens appeared, in par-
munications with the battalion com-         before. Wounded in the hand, he or-      ticular, to have suffered severely.
mander were lost.                           ganized the survivors’ final defense.    Heavy Arab casualties would not be
   As the second day of fighting            He placed the six most junior sol-       unusual among particularly fanatical
closed, 6th Company counted an-             diers in the care of Sergeant Andrey     units, nor would it be unusual for the
other 26 paratroopers killed and            Proshev and ordered them to escape.      Chechens to have pushed the Ar-
many wounded. Counting the 31               Then, as the Chechens pressed the        abs first into harm’s way. Lobanov
men who had fallen the day before,          attack, Sokolov called artillery fire    counted 200 enemy dead on Hill 776
6th Company had suffered a KIA rate         down on his position as a desperate      alone, along with 75 Russian para-
of almost two-thirds—57 out of 90           attempt to fend off the enemy. An-       troopers. Survivor Viktor Sokirko
men.19 Chechen casualties also con-         other 16 paratroopers on Hill 776        stated, “I took a notebook from the
tinued to mount. Repeated human-            were killed in the continuing fight-     pocket of one of the gunmen with a
wave attacks are costly, especially         ing.22                                   roster of 100 people; the bullet had
when the defenders are supported                                                     hit him right in his heart; it had gone
by artillery and aviation.                  Day 4, 3 March 2000                      through his Koran.”26
   The Chechens had been throw-                The struggle for control of Hills         The bodies of the 84 fallen VDV
ing themselves at Hill 776 to keep          776 and 787 ended on the fourth day      troops were evacuated on foot, with
open a path for the rest of their force.    of the fighting. The last 11 para-       combat aviation providing support.
This movement was interrupted by            troopers on Hill 776 were killed.23      It was shaping up to be a bloody
the arrival of the relief force from Hill   The relief force found Proshev’s         month for the Russian Army; it had
1410. Major Andrey Lobanov, com-            small band of survivors.24 The sur-      a total of 156 dead—a higher KIA
manding a 45th VDV Reconnaisance            viving Chechens, who had not been        rate than during the grimmest com-
Regiment SPETSNAZ group, was                able to escape over the saddle before    parable period in the storming of
with this force. He noted that hun-         the relief’s arrival, slipped back       Groznyy.27
dreds of pack animals had already           down into the gorge pursued by               6th Company accomplished its
passed by. The Russians moved into          paratroopers and hunted by heli-         mission. The Chechen force was
the saddle and found 6th Company’s          copters. The Russian pursuit took        blocked from escaping the encircle-
abandoned positions and soon en-            them about 5 kilometers east to the      ment. More important, Chechen
countered a large Chechen group.            village of Selmentausen where a          commanders realized that they could
The Russians retreated to Hill 787          number of escaping Chechens had          not seize strategic population cen-
from which they could cover the             concentrated.                            ters in the low terrain and would be
saddle.                                                                              forced to stay in the mountains. In
   The Russians intercepted the             MoppingUp                                the next few days, a number of
Chechen commander’s desperate or-              The Chechens won a Pyrrhic vic-       Chechen fighters surrendered to the
ders: “Do not engage in battle.             tory. Tarrying to bludgeon through       Russians. The day after the battle

94                                                                                  July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
                                                                                                                 A LMANAC
ended, a Chechen field commander           ReconnaissanceandSecurity                   mander and his deputy. Other Rus-
surrendered with 73 men, including            Kazantsev, former commander of           sian airborne and SPETSNAZ forces
30 wounded—the largest surrender           the Grouping of Airborne Troops in          in the area, responding to reinforce
to that date. Made up largely of           Chechnya, accurately described the          6th Company, fought their way into
Chechen teenagers, this band had           situation: “Such heavy losses could         the area and eventually stopped the
actually escaped over the saddle be-       have been avoided. Reconnaissance           Chechen breakout. All this occurred
fore the relief arrived on 2 March. It     must be carried out more carefully.”32      in enormously difficult terrain and
surrendered on the outskirts of            After walking over the battlefield,         weather conditions and against tena-
Selmentausen. The young men had            Lobanov, who fought forward with            cious Chechen resistance. Because
had enough of war.28                       the relief, also said pointedly, “There     the Chechens are notoriously atroc-
                                           is a continual question in my head:         ity-prone, especially toward mem-
Recriminations                             Why was there no information that           bers of the more elite Russian mili-
   The loss of 6th Company pro-            such a horde of gunmen was break-           tary organizations, fighting to the
voked an interservice exchange of          ing through?”33 Compounding this            death makes a necessity.
recriminations. At a news confer-          failure was the lackadaisical attitude         Media reports consistently indi-
ence, Shpak bluntly blamed the di-         toward the company’s security. 6th          cate that no 6th Company soldiers
saster on the Eastern Grouping of          Company had blinded itself, allow-          were taken prisoner. They refused to
Forces’ commander, to whom the air-        ing Chechens the priceless element          give up their position, even while
borne troops had been subordinated.        of surprise. Had 6th Company been           knowing they would be overrun and
Shpak’s subordinates added their fire:     properly alerted and ready in proper        killed. The VDV is known as an elite
“It all began back in Dagestan, when       defenses, it might have been able to        force composed of soldiers with high
Kazantsev sent the airborne troops         hold off the Chechens successfully          morale, discipline and a sense of pur-
to their death and protected his own       until relief arrived. One elemental fail-   pose. Their actions make it clear that
infantry.”29 They claimed airborne         ure cascaded into another, which            this characterization held true. De-
forces had been stretched too thin         might explain why the battalion com-        spite glaring tactical mistakes in se-
and “in isolation from the main            mander suddenly emerged as the              curity and reconnaissance, the Rus-
forces. . . . [T]he grouping command       defense’s motivating force once the         sian airborne spirit successfully
treats the airborne troops as cannon       disaster unfolded.                          imbued its men with the morale and
fodder.”30                                    However much the Russian offi-           courage that come with pride of
   By the middle of March, cumula-         cial line emphasizes the heroism of         corps.
tive airborne casualties gave ammu-        6th Company paratroopers, the re-              Despite the bad publicity sur-
nition for their charges. Shpak re-        sults of the official inquiry ordered       rounding the casualty figures in this
ported that 181 airborne soldiers had      by President Vladmir Putin was pro-         battle, the Russian Army achieved
been killed and 395 wounded in             fessionally blunt. The force was ac-        an important victory. By holding Hill
Chechnya out of a force of about           cused of “slovenliness, laxity and          776 long enough for additional VDV
5,100 men. The total Russian force         unprofessionalism.” 34 The force            troops to fill the area, 6th Company
in Chechnya had averaged about             showed a glaring loss of basic tacti-       defeated the Chechen strategy to
100,000 and had lost 1,291 Defense         cal skills at the company level during      break out of the mountains and re-
Ministry troops and 617 Interior           the encounters. Such basic tactical         gain the initiative. Chechen fighters,
Ministry troops for a total of 1,908,      considerations should have been             seeing they could not break through
suffering 3,190 and 2,107 wounded.         uppermost in the company officers’          Russian lines, were forced to scale
Airborne forces had numbered five          minds. Whether this was a local ab-         back their objectives. Instead of em-
percent of the force and suffered 10       erration or indicates pervasive prob-       ploying relatively large groups
percent of the deaths.31                   lems throughout Russian Army elite          against vulnerable population cen-
   Shpak had a point. While the op-        forces, the VDV’s failure poses im-         ters, Chechen leaders realized they
erational concept of blocking and          portant questions about Russian ca-         had to break up into smaller forma-
trapping the Chechens was sound,           pabilities. While the VDV performed         tions to wage war at a much lower
the net was too weak. 104th GPR            credibly and often with distinction in      level.
was forced to commit individual            the Second Chechen War, there                  But, this was an expensive Rus-
companies, which could not be eas-         have been enough blatant excep-             sian victory. Russian blood and
ily reinforced, to oppose the break-       tions to conclude that even the             valor had to make up for the deficit
through attempt of a lethal brigade-       VDV’s skills are no longer of a uni-        in basic combat skills, an issue larger
size unit. The airborne net should         form high standard, despite Shpak’s         than one small-unit leadership failure.
have been backed up with larger            reforms.                                    The entire Russian force has suf-
motorized rifle formations. Shpak’s                                                    fered too many similar catastrophies
complaints carried enough weight to        PrideofCorps                                for the fate of 6th Company to be
have the Grouping of Airborne                 On the positive side, 6th Com-           just a tragic exception. Still, there was
Forces transferred from Troshev’s          pany recovered and fought well              significant improvement in battle-
command to the Joint Grouping of           against enormous odds once it               field performance between the First
Federal Forces—the overall head-           moved to Hill 776 under the effective       and Second Chechen Wars, although
quarters for operations in Chechnya.       leadership of the battalion com-            performance levels still remained low,

MILITARY REVIEW     l   July-August 2001                                                                                    95
which reflected how bad things had           Speaking at the funeral, Russian                               cies require the actual presence of casualties before they
                                                                                                            can be reported.
become. The failure of an elite force     Defense Minister Igor Sergeyev                                      13. Bulavinov.
                                                                                                              14. Prokopenko, “To the Death.”
such as the Russian airborne shows        stated, “This battle for a nameless                                 15. Prokopenko, “Eighty-Four Airborne Troops Die
                                                                                                            Holding Back Onslaught of 2.5 Thousand Rebels,”
how fragile and perishable such           height was the turning point of the                               Krasnaya Zvezda (11 March 2000), Moscow.
skills are.                               entire Chechen campaign. It was a                                   16. Odnokolenko and Shchipanova.
                                                                                                              17. Aleksandr Kondrashov, “Military Industrial Complex
                                          do-or-die crisis for the fallen, and                              Has Bled the Country Dry and There is Nothing Left to
                                                                                                            Fight With,” Argumenty i Fakty (4 April 2000), Moscow;
TheAftermath                              they chose to follow the paths of                                 Daniel Williams, “Russian Admits to Heavy Casualties
                                                                                                            in Chechnya, Washington Post (11 March 2000).
    The battle of Ulus-Kert was           their ancestors in similar desperate                                18. Oleg Falichev, “They Strode Into Immortality,”
quickly enshrined in heroic myth, its     straits. Just such decisions were                                 Krasnaya Zevzda (16 March 2000), Moscow.
                                                                                                              19. Interfax (0940 GMT, 10 March 2000), Moscow.
theme loudly echoed by Russian            made by Russian servicemen on                                       20. Sokirko, “A Toast.”
                                                                                                              21. Ibid.
media, the Ministry of Defense and        Kulikovo Field, on Lake Chud, at                                    22. Interfax (0940 GMT, 10 March 2000), Moscow.
                                                                                                              23. Michael Wines, “Russian City Buries a Hero, Firm
the airborne forces themselves. This      Borodino and at Sevastopol. In the                                in its Faith in the War,” New York Times (15 March 2000);
reflects popular support for the war      winter of 1941 Panfilov’s legendary                               Interfax (0940 GMT, 10 March 2000), Moscow.
                                                                                                              24. Interfax (0940 GMT, 10 March 2000), Moscow.
and the military and a renewal of         heroes defended the last line with                                  25. ITAR TASS (1510 GMT, 9 March 2000), Moscow.
                                                                                                              26. Sokirko, “A Toast.”
Russian nationalism. It also served       their lives on the approaches of                                    27. Williams; Andrei Marychev, ITAR-TASS (16 March
                                                                                                            2000), Moscow; Sergey Ostanin, ITAR-TASS (24 March
to distract public attention from         Moscow. Nowadays the Argun                                        2000), Moscow.
manifest failures the catstrophe re-      Gorge has been just such a line for                                 28. Vyacheslav Grunskiy, NTV (1600 GMT, 5 March
                                                                                                            2000), Moscow; Sarah Karush, “Funeral Captures Mood
vealed. Certainly the results of the      the Guards’ paratroopers.”36                                      of New War, Moscow Times (7 March 2000).
                                                                                                              29. Bulavinov.
official inquiry commissioned by                                                                              30. Ibid.
                                                                  NOTES                                       31. Marychev; Ostanin.
Putin will never be made public.              1. Interfax (10 March 2000), Moscow; Oleg Odno-
                                                                                                              32. Sergey Bychkov, “Stolen Victory,” Moskovskiy
                                                                                                            Komsomolets (18 March 2000), Moscow. General Viktor
Nonetheless, he issued a decree           kolenko and Tatyana Shchipanova, “Such an Untimely                Kazantsev was the deputy commander of the VDV before
                                          Death: Authorities Cover Up Death of 86 Airborne                  he was assigned to command airborne forces in
decorating all of the fallen paratroop-   Troops,” Segodnya (10 March 2000), Moscow.                        Chechnya. He was injured in a helicopter crash in late
ers, with all 13 officers and nine en-        2. Sergey Prokopenko, “To the Death,” Krasnaya
                                          Zvezda (11 March 2000), Moscow; Viktor Sokirko, “Air-
                                                                                                            January and replaced in command on 1 February 2000.
                                                                                                              33. Sokirko, “A Toast.”
listed men receiving Russia’s highest     borne Troops Commander Georgiy Shpak: ‘These Guys
                                          Performed a Feat,’” Moskovskiy Komsomolets (14 March
                                                                                                              34. Nezavisimaya Gazeta (13 March 2000), Moscow.
                                                                                                              35. Prokopenko, “To the Death.”
medal—Hero of the Russian Federa-         2000), Moscow; Sergey Dyupin and Valerriy Tsygankov,                36. Falichev.
                                          “Airborne Troops Called Fire Upon Themselves,”
tion.35                                   Komersant (7 May 2000), Moscow.
                                              3. Ilya Bulavinov, “Cannon Fodder Consists of People
    A memorial service was held on 14     as Well: Paratrooper Shpak Attacks General Troshev,”                    Sergeant Michael D. Wilmoth, US
March at the Novopasskiy Monas-           Komemersant (17 March 2000), Moscow.
                                              4. Airborne company designations refer to company               Army Reserve, is an intelligence
tery in Moscow. The service was           tactical groups.                                                    analyst at the Office of Naval Intelli-
                                              5. Interfax (0940 GMT, 10 March 2000) Moscow.
conducted by Russian Orthodox Pa-             6. Moskovskiy Komsomolets (14 March 2000), Mos-
                                                                                                              gence. He received an A.S. from
                                          cow.                                                                Northern Virginia Community Col-
triarch Alekisy II of Moscow and all          7. Yuliya Kalinina, “Terrible Losses,” [Unknown] (10            lege and is continuing his education
Russia, and was attended by Putin,        March 2000).
                                              8. The Chechens have shown a remarkable ability to              at the American Military University.
Chief of the Russian General Staff        maintain and employ the basic military skills they acquired
                                          while in service with the former Soviet Army. Ironically, they
                                                                                                              He has served in Korea and Bosnia.
General Anatoliy Kvashnin and na-         maintained these skills better than did the Russian Army.               Lieutenant Colonel Peter G.
tional and military leaders. It was an
                                              9. TV RTV (1000 GMT, 14 March 2000), Moscow;
                                          Sokirko, “Airborne Troops.”
                                                                                                              Tsouras, US Army Reserve, Retired,
                                                                                                              is Division Senior Analyst, National
enormous statement of resolve. Like-        10. Sokirko, “A Toast to Russian Soldiers,”
                                          Moskovskiy Komsomolets (14 March 2000), Moscow.                     Ground Intelligence Center. He re-
wise, the funeral of most of the Rus-       11. Prokopenko, “To the Death.”
                                            12. Odnokolenko and Shchipanova; Interfax (9 March                ceived a B.A. from the University of
sian dead at their home garrison in       2000), Moscow, is an interview with General Nikolai                 Utah and is a graduate of the US
                                          Staskov, deputy commander of the Russian Airborne
Pskov was a heartfelt demonstration       Forces. Initial comments of Russian Ministry of Defense             Army Command and General Staff
of this sentiment. Most of the dead       (MOD) personnel indicated that only 31 members of 6th               College. He has served in the Con-
                                          Company had been killed in the entire battle. Although
                                                                                                              tinental United States and Germany.
were buried in Pskov where the fu-        Russia media speculate that MOD was intentionally try-
                                          ing to cover up casualties, they likely received more ac-           He is the author of several books on
neral service was held in the ancient     curate casualty figures sooner than did the MOD public
                                          affairs office. This figure accurately represents the first         military history.
Trinity Cathedral.                        day of fighting. Also, Russian casualty accounting poli-

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96                                                                                                         July-August 2001         l   MILITARY REVIEW
The Promise of e-Commerce to Defense:
The Road to Savings
J. Michael Brower
   As the Department of Defense            help counter CEO Jeff           billion) to apply toward acquiring new
(DOD) struggles to keep up with e-         Bezos’ prophecy: “It will turn out in      weapons systems.7
business, e-tailing, e-everything, it      the long term that the US is the
does so not to be in vogue but to          worst country for e-commerce.”4 Of-        ReverseAuctioningand
achieve a definite national-security       ten, DOD support for technology            SmartCards
goal. That goal remains consistent         and government support for techno-            To help make up the shortfall, e-
from one major defense review to           logical innovation made the differ-        commerce shepherded procurement
the next—reduce the costs of               ence in profitability.                     purchase using reverse auctioning
nonwarfighting tasks, and apply the                                                   and smart cards. With reverse auc-
savings to the acquisition of new          CyberClickskrieg@DOD                       tioning, all potential vendors can see
weapons systems.1                              DOD’s commitment to e-com-             the price for goods and services,
   While military missions every-          merce principles began in earnest          thereby driving the price down. The
where increased during the resource-       with the May 1998 Defense Reform           reverse-auction process produces
constrained 1990s, leveraging the          Initiative Directives. The Joint Elec-
                                                                                      the best price when all merchants
cost savings that the information          tronic Commerce Program Office
                                                                                      can see DOD’s bottom-line costs.
technology (IT) revolution promised        (JECPO) was to navigate DOD’s
                                                                                         Smaller companies join the pro-
became a necessity. Enter e-com-           transition to e-commerce.5 The DOD
                                                                                      cess by using the Internet to con-
merce and the concomitant reduc-           e-mall, a linchpin in DOD’s over-
                                           arching e-vision, began with expand-       duct business and by adopting e-
tions in the labor expenses that the                                                  standards like Extensible Markup
private sector has enjoyed.                ing the Defense Logistics Agency’s
                                           online catalogue and now provides          Language (XML) and Universal De-
   Traditionally, e-commerce helps
                                           one-stop shopping to all DOD elec-         scription, Discovery and Integration
suppliers sell directly to consumers
                                           tronic and commercial catalogs.            (UDDI). Potential suppliers can reg-
and develops ongoing trade rela-
                                               In fiscal year (FY) 2000, the e-mall   ister quickly, and technology they
tionships at the speed of cyber-
                                           contained nearly 5 million items and       already have is leveraged to help cut
space, cutting costs to middlemen.
                                           processed $78.8 million of transac-        their bottom lines, which allows them
As the online marketplace has be-
come commonplace, military leaders         tions. JECPO’s goal for FY 2001 is to      to compete against larger firms.
have capitalized on the lessons of         have 12 million items in the e-mall to        Competition helps DOD find the
industry and have purposefully             generate as much as $143 million.6         best deals. For instance, the Navy is
charted an e-conomic e-commerce                Industry powerhouses catering          busily reengineering its procurement
course.                                    to DOD see e-commerce as a force           precepts, including the cultural
   Electronic commerce holds many          multiplier. For military managers who      change of delegating to the lowest
rewards.2 Fortunately for DOD, ac-         must do more with less, “force mul-        level. The Navy’s Fleet Martial Sup-
cess to the sharpest minds in e-com-       tiplier” is more than just a catch         ply Office, with the mission of pro-
merce is aided by the fact that e-com-     phrase du-jour; it is a requirement to     viding IT for Naval Supply Systems
merce remains largely a US-based           keep the US military performing amid       Command, has partnered with Razor-
phenomenon. However, the balance           stagnant budgets.                          fish Incorporated to put buying de-
is shifting. Internet Dynamics Cor-            In countenancing future logistic       cisions at the lowest tier.8
poration predicts that by 2003, West-      operations, DOD must cut adminis-             Software developed for the project
ern Europe and Japan will have com-        trative costs and improve efficiency       allows Navy personnel to make pur-
bined to lower the US e-commerce           in the acquisition arena. Sadly, nei-      chase decisions with a greater aware-
share to 44 percent.3                      ther acquisition policy nor legisla-       ness of inventory and available fund-
   US industry sees DOD as a test          tion can match the speed of change         ing. Reporting transactions to the
bed for developing the best e-com-         associated with the technology they        comptroller via a client-server envi-
merce solutions because of DOD’s           would regulate. Consequently, acqui-       ronment has allowed the retirement
history of technological innovation        sition reform—the DOD watch phrase         of more-expensive mainframes.
and cost-saving acquisition goods.         during the 1990s—has not resulted in          The DOD Purchase Card Pro-
DOD’s interest in e-commerce should        predicted savings (approximately $60       gram has also produced savings. By

MILITARY REVIEW     l   July-August 2001                                                                                 97
FY 2000, DOD had met its goal to           immense, e-commerce will continue
have 90 percent of all DOD pur-            to grow, to the benefit of private            1. Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Army,
chases under $2,500 made with              economy and national security.            “The Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR) and National
                                                                                     Defense Panel (NDP) Report Concerns for Resource
government purchase cards. JECPO                                                     and Financial Managers,” Research Management

provides the infrastructure to sup-        IntotheCybersea                           (Third Quarter, 1997), 16; <
port information exchange among               When are contracting personnel,            2. Some current leading US e-commerce players
                                                                                     are Ariba, Commerce One and i2Technolgies.
credit card companies and DOD fi-          public and private alike, ready to            3. Sandy Portnoy, “Foreign Tastes Overseas e-biz
                                                                                     Grows,” CRN (Channelweb News Network), 43;
nancial systems.                           adopt an e-commerce strategy? Gen-        <>.
                                                                                         4. Tichakorn Hill, Defense News (23 October
   Before the advent of purchase           erally, the following factors must be     2000), 62; Jeff Bezos, The Industrial Standard (2 Octo-
                                                                                     ber 2000), 41; <>. See also
cards, buying supplies and services        determined before bottling and toss-      <> and <www.idc
was labor-, paper- and bureaucracy-        ing the e-procurement message into            5. When conducting e-commerce with DOD, begin
intensive. As of September 2000,           the cybersea:                             with the Joint Electronic Commerce Program Office
more than 10 million purchase card            l Are costs for technology and             6. Miles Holtzman, “Electronic Commerce” (20 No-
                                                                                     vember 2000). Provided by Maria Lloyd, Defense Logis-
transactions had been made—$5.5            associated hardware and software          tics Agency, Public Affairs Division, 21 November 2000.
                                                                                     See also < 1997/a19970
billion worth.                             low, particularly for access to e-com-    516qdr2.html> and <>.
                                                                                         7. The $60 billion figure was the approximate tar-
   E-commerce capitalizes on buying        merce design kits?                        get for savings projected by the 1997 QDR, which had
                                                                                     hoped to replace military teeth where tail had thrived.
power that DOD already has and is             l Are usable applications and              8. Jennifer Moselli, “Navy Finds a Better Way to
an excellent counterweight to effects      hardware for end-users and procure-       Buy,” Information Week (2 October 2000), 111. For more
                                                                                     information on Razorfish, see <razorfish@www.
of personnel and resource austerity        ment personnel available?       >.

that characterized much of DOD                l Are standards promulgated                  J. Michael Brower is a program
during the 1990s. E-commerce has           and consistent, particularly in terms        specialist, Department of Justice,
proved its viability and pays for itself   of the application of cross-communi-         Immigration and Naturalization
in savings.                                cation?                                      Service, Eastern Regional Office,
                                                                                        South Burlington, Vermont. He re-
   As though by design, but gener-            l Do e-commerce transactions
                                                                                        ceived a B.S. from Park College.
ally because market mechanisms are         have measurable utility, convenience         He served in the US Air Force
functioning in the new economy             and value-added?                             from 1987 to 1991. His Insights
much as they did in the old, DOD is           l Will transactions be secure?            article “DOD Outsourcing and
using e-commerce to offset the pain           l Will e-commerce transaction             Privatization” appeared in the Sep-
                                                                                        tember-November 1998 issue of
of 1990s budget stagnation. With           have minimal legal and policy con-           Military Review.
potential savings so immediate and         straints?

Short-Range Air Defense in Army Divisions:
Do We Really Need It?
Colonel Charles A. Anderson, US Army
   Soon after General Eric K. Shinseki        Shinseki set the azimuth for a more    and capabilities in an era having
became the Chief of Staff, US Army,        deployable, lethal force that when        fewer resources. White sees this ef-
in June 1999, he stated that his goal      properly manned and equipped could        fort as involving “hellish choices.”4
was “to provide strategic leadership       accomplish National Military Strat-          In Fighting for the Future: Will
that [would] keep the Army the pre-        egy tasks. Given the continuous,          America Triumph? Ralph Peters
eminent land warfighting force in the      growing gap between funding and           suggests there is a fundamental
world.”1 To accomplish this goal,          military requirements, Shinseki must      asymmetry between the kind of mili-
Shinseki cited six key objectives:         look critically at competing programs     tary force the United States has and
   l To increase strategic respon-         and capabilities to make difficult de-    the kind it needs.5 Peters’ theme is
siveness.                                  cisions about the Army’s traditional      that the United States is “preparing
   l To develop a clear, long-term         roles and enduring capabilities.          for the war we want to fight . . , not
strategy to improve operational joint         The Army’s business is to fight        the conflicts we cannot avoid.”6 To
readiness and implement Joint Vi-          and win wars. However, it is in-          avoid this trap, Shinseki is striving to
sion 2010 (JV2010) goals.                  volved in many other activities. In       bring strategic relevance and bal-
   l To develop joint warfighting          1997, Assistant Secretary of Defense      ance to the Army. Changes in force
leaders.                                   John T. White, addressing the Qua-        structure and traditional roles are in-
   l To fully integrate Active and         drennial Defense Review (QDR)             evitable.
Reserve Components.                        Board, stated, “We are at a pivotal          Since 1994 the Commission on
   l To fully man warfighting units.       point in history where the Cold War       Service Roles and Missions has con-
   l To provide for the well-being         recedes . . . and a new century           tinually targeted US Army Air De-
of soldiers, civilians and family mem-     rushes toward us.”3 The QDR’s chal-       fense Artillery (ADA) for budget
bers.2                                     lenge is to develop new strategies        and personnel cuts. The dogmatic

98                                                                                  July-August 2001        l   MILITARY REVIEW
                                                                                                              I NSIGHTS
objectives of reducing the size of         positions, acquiring more capability     forces before US heavy forces can
Army divisions and enhancing stra-         than their size, economy and capabil-    support them.14
tegic mobility while maintaining le-       ity would suggest.11 In essence, the        The National Research Council
thality and survivability attracts the     past and future are colliding. The       also suggested that the air threat
force-structure scalpel Army senior        United States must deal with rogue       would become increasingly diverse
leaders wave toward mission areas          nations, declining states, terrorists    and lethal beyond 2010. It would no
such as short-range air defense            and insurgents whose causes have         longer be possible to rely on the air
(SHORAD) forces. The question is,          been smoldering. Today these fac-        superiority demonstrated during the
should SHORAD be in an Army di-            tions are armed with more-sophisti-      Gulf War and subsequent conflicts.
vision? Do the threat and existing         cated weapons than their predeces-          The US military’s ability to antici-
joint capabilities suggest the need to     sors could ever have imagined.12         pate the threat and react accordingly
keep the air defense battalion in di-                                               with the appropriate technology is
vision warfighting formations?             LessonsLearned                           not always first rate. Since 1980, bal-
                                              As well as preparing for two          listic missiles have been used in six
TheArgument                                nearly simultaneous major theater        regional conflicts.15 Strategic analyst
   Why do we have air defense artil-       wars, the Army faces significant in-     Dennis M. Gormley maintains that if
lery in Army divisions? The last hos-      creases in other activities, ranging     “planners respond to the threat of
tile aircraft shot down by US              from humanitarian and relief opera-      land-attack cruise missiles as slowly
ground-based air-defense forces was        tions to major deployments. The US       as they did to ballistic missile threats,
in 1950 when the 507th Automatic           military has deterred aggression in      Washington and its allies may be on
Weapons Battalion shot down two            the Arabian Gulf, restored democ-        a dangerous path.”16 At the time of
of four hostile North Korean planes.       racy in Haiti and stopped war in         Iraq’s attack on Kuwait in August
Antiaircraft guns and US Air Force         Bosnia. The armistice is stable on       1990, the US Army had only three
(USAF) fighters quickly neutralized        the Korean peninsula, and the Yu-        experimental Patriot Advanced Capa-
the Korean air threat.7                    goslavian army has withdrawn from        bility Version 2 (PAC-2) interceptors.
   Today, the US Air Force is the          Kosovo.13 The world is safer, but        Fortunately, Saddam Hussein’s six-
most technologically advanced air          current and future enemies are taking    month delay allowed the United
force in the world, second only to                                                  States to rapidly improve and pro-
                                           notes. Perhaps the next adversary
China in numbers of air frames.8 US                                                 duce more PAC-2 missiles.
                                           will not allow the United States to
Marine and Navy air power consti-                                                      The Defense Science Board’s
                                           build a robust lodgment for generat-
tutes the world’s third largest air                                                 1994 study on cruise missile defense
force. More important, US pilots are       ing combat power and logistic sup-
                                                                                    paralleled that of the National Re-
among the world’s most proficient.         port. The challenge will be to sustain
                                                                                    search Council. Defense Science
US Air Force and Navy pilot training       the political will to fight in remote
                                                                                    Board findings heightened the De-
averages 220 hours a year compared         places where the threat to national
                                                                                    partment of Defense’s (DOD’s)
to a NATO average of 170 hours and         interests is not clear.                  awareness of the evolving cruise
about 50 hours in potential enemy air         During Operation Desert Storm,        missile threat against US forward-
forces.9                                   97 soldiers were killed in action. The   deployed forces and lodgment areas.
   It might be presumptive to sug-         US public has come to expect such        Wishing away cruise missile and un-
gest that air power can protect US         low casualty rates, but leaders of       manned aerial vehicle (UAV) threats
land forces throughout a campaign          rogue nations, failing states and ter-   is not prudent. The US almost made
or to presume that high costs asso-        rorist gangs are not overly concerned    that mistake with ballistic missiles.
ciated with training and maintaining       with casualties. They watched US            Authors Stefan T. Possony and
a sophisticated air force would pre-       forces pull out of Somalia and Beirut    J.E. Pournelle cite two common falla-
vent potential enemies from acquir-        because of unexpected casualties         cies about technology—that the
ing a competitive air force. In 1999       and realized that the most direct way    march of technology can be halted
Director of Central Intelligence           to deter the US military force was to    by agreement and that small advan-
George J. Trent presented the 20th-        increase the probable casualty rate.     tages are not decisive and probably
century threat assessment to the US           In 1992 the National Research         not important.17 The first fallacy sug-
Senate Arms Services Committee. He         Council identified advanced tech-        gests that arms control measures
said, “Future challenges to US inter-      nologies that most likely would be       and policies can prevent developing
ests will flow from new factors such       used against the United States in the    nations from acquiring weapons of
as the increasing availability of so-      21st century. Adversaries would:         mass destruction (WMD) and the
phisticated technology and the ease           l Use improved methods for de-        means to transport them to military
and speed with which it can be ap-         livering chemical and biological war-    and civilian targets. History alone
plied by those hostile to the United       fare agents.                             disproves the second fallacy; Paki-
States.”10                                    l Use low-flying cruise missiles.     stan and India have nuclear weap-
   The 1998 Joint Strategy Review             l Use advanced tactical ballistic     ons, and Korea is testing a ballistic
supports this notion and maintains         missiles capable of surmounting US       missile capable of reaching the
that other nations and nonstate ac-        defenses.                                United States.
tors will be able to leverage niche           l Attack initially deploying US          Currently the USAF can support

MILITARY REVIEW     l   July-August 2001                                                                                 99
only one major theater of war. During     threats includes those that attack          unmanned bombers packed with ex-
the Kosovo crisis, it scrambled to        ground targets from the air.                plosives, piloted remotely via a radio
mass pilots, fuelers and precision           The National Air Intelligence            link, attacked hardened targets such
munitions required to interdict           Center maintains that ballistic and         as submarine pens. Current UAVs
Kosovo and Serbian targets. During        cruise missiles are a significant threat    will be able to destroy WMD pro-
Operation Desert Storm, it had 20         to deployed US and allied forces.           duction and storage facilities buried
fighter wing equivalents. When the        Cruise missiles have great standoff         beneath mountains.
F-22 replaces the aging F-16 and F-       as “unmanned, armed aircraft that              One can easily debate how the
15 fleet, the USAF will be half the       can be launched from another air-           array of theater missiles and manned
size.                                     craft, ship, submarine, or ground-          fixed- and rotary-wing aircraft can be
    Action in Kosovo also demon-          based launcher to attack ships . . . or     used in a given contingency. With
strated the importance of having safe     ground-based targets.”20                    the growing costs required to main-
havens in which to assemble and              LACM. Land attack cruise mis-            tain aircraft and train pilots, UAVs
launch air operations. Safe havens        siles (LACM) are an attractive op-          and LACMs are attractive yet effec-
could become more difficult to obtain     tion for potential threats because          tive aerial platforms. This does not
if adversaries threaten neighbors with    they can effectively evade US air de-       suggest that manned aircraft will be
WMD. Furthermore, commercial sat-         fense systems. LACMs are powered            cut from a potential threat’s arsenal.
ellite imagery and longer-range, more-    by jet engines or rockets and are           Manned aircraft might not increase
accurate delivery capabilities could      equipped with an internal computer          in numbers, but they will improve in
expose safe havens. A flash point         or remote control for guidance and          sophistication.
anywhere in the world coupled with        navigation. Although they look like            The credibility of US ground-to-
a Kosovo-type crisis could place          aircraft with stubby wings, they            air and air-to-air defensive capabili-
decisionmakers in a resource-con-         move slower than high-performance           ties will be challenged. Applying at-
strained dilemma.                         fighter aircraft and reach targets in a     tack or strike operations against
    If hostile states and nonstate ac-    matter of hours rather than minutes.        short-dwell and fixed-launch plat-
tors learn from the past, they will       Over 25 countries now have ballistic        forms, supply points and command
never permit US forces to freely es-      missiles systems. By 2015 the land          and control (C2) facilities could re-
tablish a lodgment in the area of op-     attack cruise missile market will in-       duce or modify the use of theater
erations or a safe haven in a nearby      clude from 6,000 to 7,000 missiles.         missiles and other aerial platforms.
country. Their objective will likely be   Most land attack cruise missiles            However, since Operation Desert
to strike quickly with an array of air    have effective ranges from 90 to 190        Storm, US efforts have improved at-
and missile threats aimed at forward-     miles and can hit within a few feet of      tack operations only slightly.
deployed US forces. If that fails to      their targets.                                 With UAVs and cruise missiles re-
sway US public opinion, they will            Because LACMs are difficult to
                                                                                      quiring smaller operational and logis-
consider WMD use. The best time           detect, track and intercept, air de-
                                                                                      tic footprints than ballistic missiles,
to execute such actions would be          fense systems will be stressed.
when the United States is already         Cruise missiles are smaller than air-       the possibility of interdicting such
entangled in Kosovo- or Bosnian-          craft and, depending on terrain, can        targets is remote. The future threat
type commitments.                         fly below radar coverage. For ex-           will economically gain operational
                                          ample, ground-based radar can de-           and strategic advantages by using
FutureAerialThreats                       tect an aircraft flying at 10,000 feet      an array of theater missiles.
   Predicting what capability a poten-    over 150 miles away. Because of the         SHORADandFull-Spectrum
tial enemy might employ is always         earth’s curvature, the same ground-
controversial. Such an endeavor’s         based radar cannot detect a low-fly-        Dominance
difficulty is revealed by the fact that   ing cruise missile outside 20 miles.21         In July 1996, JV2010 was issued to
the Central Intelligence Agency and          UAV. Until recently, many armed          provide a conceptual framework
the Defense Intelligence Agency sel-      forces regarded the UAV as a sensor         within which the US Armed Forces
dom present a consensus, given a          platform for conducting reconnais-          can view and prepare for the future.
global weapons market, parallel tech-     sance and surveillance. UAVs are            It also provides a blueprint with
nology and decreasing costs asso-         now weapon carriers. Armed UAVs             which to leverage military forces and
ciated with high-tech digital systems.    are smaller than manned counter-            achieve effectiveness in joint opera-
A common fallacy is to interpret “no      parts and cheaper to operate. They          tions. Its intent is to provide direc-
peer threat” as “no threat.”18 In a       also function as multirole aerial plat-     tion to achieve joint, full-spectrum
Strategic Studies Institute Special Re-   forms and can deliver weapons, pro-         dominance through four operational
port, Earl H. Tilford Jr. says, “Rather   vide real-time intelligence, designate      concepts: full-dimensional protec-
than facing a single, symmetrical         targets, collect signal intelligence        tion, dominant maneuver, focused
threat from a known enemy, as was         and perform decoy, jamming and in-          logistics and precision engage-
the case from 1946 until the end of       formation-warfare functions. UAVs           ment.23
the Cold War, the nation faces a          can be used at high altitudes for              Full-spectrum dominance entails
range of multidimensional and asym-       long periods or at low altitudes for        overpowering any adversary and
metrical threats.”19 The array of         short periods.22 During World War II,       controlling a situation regardless of

100                                                                                  July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
                                                                                                              I NSIGHTS
the operation.24 The Concept for Fu-        system of systems engages the air         Operation Desert Storm. Subse-
ture Joint Operations states that fu-       battle with a 24-hour, all-weather ra-    quently, it exposed joint air defense
ture military trends will most likely       dar that can detect low-radar cross-      capability as being segmented by ser-
include WMD.25 WMD delivery                 section aerial targets and near-real      vice and restricted by procedures and
platforms might well be ballistic and       time automated C2 architecture that       limited interoperability.
cruise missiles, which implies chal-        provides situational awareness to            JTAMDO also revealed a joint air
lenges to all JV2010 operational con-       joint and combined forces. The C2         and missile defense system of sys-
cepts.                                      system integrates horizontal and ver-     tems that lacked a timely air picture
   To achieve dominant maneuver             tical air defense weapons, thereby        and a universal combat identifica-
and precision engagement, com-              enhancing situational awareness           tion capability.29 Most alarming, find-
manders must have freedom of ac-            and reducing fratricide. Stingers fired   ings revealed joint weapons with
tion. Freedom of action suggests            by individual soldiers or from wheeled    ranges and rules of engagement that
full-dimensional protection, includ-        or track vehicles can provide 24-         could not satisfactorily meet threats
ing protection from asymmetric              hour, shoot-on-the-move, mobile           beyond 2010.
threats, across all phases of an op-        protection for maneuver forces.26            The JTAMDO master plan in-
eration. A multilayered defense                 SHORAD has limitations. The           cluded a single integrated air picture
against a range of threats requires         forward area air defense (FAAD)           (SIAP) that would allow participating
offensive and defensive actions             command, control, communications          units to observe the same digital air
such as theater-missile defense and         and intelligence (C3I) system and         battle. Engagement coordination
defensive counter-air operations.           the ground-based sensor (GBS) rep-        drastically improves when all ser-
   Stretching military resources over       resent a colossal step from the days      vices see only one track for every
numerous missions throughout the            of depending on binoculars for early      airborne object. A complete, com-
world creates situations in which the       warning and voice for tracking and        mon and accurate air picture enables
US might not be able to maintain air        updating the air battle. FAAD C3I         a distributed fire control that can use
superiority. Fighters must be in the        and GBS provide air surveillance,         remote data to engage a target.30
area of concern to intercept low-fly-       target acquisition and targeting in-      Continuous, correctly correlated
ing cruise missiles—after receiving         formation. GBS information receives       tracks improve combat identification.
ample early warning and positive            information from joint sensors then       JTAMDO also seeks to improve
identification. The smaller the radar       integrates the information so com-        early identification and destruction
cross-sections of cruise missiles and       manders can make timely battle-           of aircraft and missile threats. Soon,
UAVs, the more challenging acquisi-         management decisions.                     waiting until the target is visible
tion and combat identification are for          SHORAD relies on identification,      might be too late to engage. The
the pilot. This problem is further ex-      friend or foe (IFF) or visual identifi-   SIAP will keep identification on a
acerbated by issues such as the             cation and does not include an un-        track with a single joint force identi-
availability of sufficient airframes for    cooperative target-recognition capa-      fication.
offensive and defensive missions,           bility. In 1995, the Office of the           The next major hurdle is to de-
tankers for refueling operations, C2        Director of Operational Test and          velop an integrated fire-control capa-
platforms and safe havens from              Evaluation maintained that FAAD           bility to allow weapons to fire using
ground and aerial threats.                  C3I and GBS were operationally suit-      data another service sensor pro-
   The capabilities of all services’        able. However, without enhanced           vides. This fire-control net would
systems vary according to each              combat identification, FAAD C3I           reduce the effects of terrain on
aerial target’s abilities. However,         might be useful only in a self-de-        ground- and sea-based sensors and
given a rapid-response requirement,         fense role.27 Although positive re-       allow engagements against low-fly-
initial-entry forces will rely on           garding many operational tasks, the       ing, low-radar-cross-section targets.
SHORAD to achieve full-dimen-               evaluation did not address the ability    Cruise missile and UAV defense
sional protection. Also, as opera-          to positively identify a manned or un-    lacks a common air picture, a reliable
tions become more nonlinear, forces         manned threat as hostile or friendly      combat identification (CID) system
will be isolated and subjected to a         at a desirable range in difficult ter-    and adequate airborne platforms to
host of aerial threats. These threats       rain.                                     be able to see low-flying threats. By
have lower radar cross-sections, are            In 1996, DOD created the Joint        2010, SIAP benefits, CID and inte-
extremely maneuverable, require less        Theater Air and Missile Defense Or-       grated fire control will provide early,
logistics than manned airframes and         ganization (JTAMDO) to improve            long-range detection, continuous
are extremely difficult to destroy on       joint air and missile defense and to      tracking, long-range engagements,
the ground. SHORAD is easier to in-         coordinate all DOD theater air and        360-degree capability and tactical
troduce into the theater, costs less        missile defense activities.28 JTAMDO      flexibility supported by less-restric-
and can be maneuvered with ground           is the warfighter’s focal point for de-   tive rules of engagement.
forces.                                     veloping and validating joint air and        Of all the joint air and missile de-
   Current SHORAD force structure           missile defense architectures and         fense systems, SHORAD has the
includes a ground-based sensor, a           operational concepts. Its initial as-     most advanced C2 and reliability re-
C2 architecture and three platforms         sessment sought to uncover short-         garding a common air picture.
that fire surface-to-air Stingers. This     falls in air and missile defense since    SHORAD will significantly benefit

MILITARY REVIEW      l   July-August 2001                                                                               101
from improvements in CID and SIAP           come more lethal, a longer-range            launchers cloaked from aerial detec-
because SHORAD already fuses                system is necessary.                        tion. UAVs, sending real-time infor-
joint sensors within the internal              The Stinger is a reliable missile for    mation to enemy forces equipped
ground-based-sensor net. SHOR-              manned aircraft, but it lacks the           with rocket artillery and short-range,
AD’s shortfall will remain missile          range and lethality to counter more         precision ballistic missiles will target
range and the inability to engage           sophisticated airborne threats. A           soldiers and equipment. Ports and
short-range ballistic missiles.             mobile, ground-based system with            air bases abroad will be untenable
   Future threats will include ballis-      360-degree coverage against all aerial      because of attacks or threats of at-
tic and cruise missiles and UAVs.           threats would be an appropriate fol-        tack, and the US Navy will be forced
Equipped with WMD, these threats            low-on system, which could be               away from brown water by mines
will need to be engaged at ranges           linked to an elevated sensor to gain        and low-tech submarines denying
beyond the existing Stinger capabili-       over-the-horizon engagements.               deployed forces the Navy’s theater
ties. Currently, force developers are       Also, the system should be able to          ballistic-missile protection and
examining ways to engage beyond             engage short-range ballistic missiles       fighter support.
20 kilometers. Additional experiments       and rocket artillery.                          Patriot forces will be overtasked
are being conducted on a suitable,             Continued research and develop-          protecting ports and coalition popu-
reliable and survivable airborne sen-       ment on laser technology will even-         lation centers, and the enemy will
sor for both acquisition and fire con-      tually produce a lightweight, lethal,       use dummy aerial threats to deplete
trol.                                       ground-based laser capable of pro-          Patriot and theater high-altitude air
   JV2010 goals and the operational         viding multiple inexpensive engage-         defense missile inventories. Last, the
concepts leading to full-spectrum           ments against all aerial threats. When      threatened use of WMD on allied
dominance are at risk. The Air Force        the SHORAD force brings antirocket          nations might deny US entry and
cannot be all things for the joint          capability to the maneuver formation,       use of ports, air bases and safe ha-
force commander. Its decreasing             its relevance will never again be           vens.
force structure will challenge its abil-    questioned.                                    Cutting air defense out of the
ity to perform defensive and offen-            Full-spectrum dominance requires         Army division and relinquishing
sive air missions. Full-dimension pro-      force protection against all aerial         aerial protection of forward-de-
tection and dominant maneuver is a          threats. Responsive, mobile, lethal         ployed forces to the Air Force would
difficult task when the enemy can le-       formations projected on hostile ter-        generate casualties in future wars
verage cruise and ballistic missiles        rain will need air and missile defense      that would far exceed US tolerance.
and UAVs against forward-deployed           to guarantee freedom of maneuver.           The argument that air defense has
formations, C2 facilities, safe havens      Maintaining the air defense battalion       not shot down an aircraft since the
and logistics bases.                        in Army divisions must be a priority        Korean War and that US air forces
   Shinseki’s vision to be on the           when assessing the Army’s force             are the best in the world would not
ground quickly with a relevant com-         structure for the 21st century.             comfort the families of US casualties.
bat force requires deploying air and                                                       Change on the horizon requires
missile defense protection. The Pa-         TheFutureWar                                tough decisions about force struc-
triot force is heavy and requires an           All US intelligence projections          ture and traditional roles and mis-
investment of strategic lift. As            suggest that the future threat to for-      sions. As the relevance of air de-
ground forces move to forward op-           ward-deployed forces will not come          fense in the division is debated,
erating bases, air and missile protec-      from an armored vehicle’s main gun,         Army leaders must consider aerial
tion should move forward also.              but from the air. For over 50 years         threats and the protection of for-
SHORAD can provide this protec-             the United States has not been truly        ward-deployed soldiers.
tion. Its force structure is suitable for   tested from the air, and assessments
use against cruise missiles, UAVs           of current capability point out weak-                              NOTES
and fixed- and rotary-wing threats.         nesses in the US Armed Forces’ abil-            1. Eric K. Shinseki, “Beginning the Next 100 Years,”
                                                                                        Army (October 1999), 28.
However, as unmanned threats be-            ity to perform joint air and missile            2. Ibid.
                                            defense.                                        3. Earl H. Tilford Jr., “National Defense into the 21st
                                                                                        Century: Defining Issues,” Strategic Studies Institute
                                               The proliferation of unmanned            Special Report (6 June 1997), 8.
                                                                                            4. Ibid., 16.
                                            platforms, commercial satellite imag-           5. Ralph Peters, Fighting for the Future: Will
      Colonel Charles A. Anderson,                                                      America Triumph? (Mechanicsburg, PA: Stackpole Books,
  US Army, is brigade commander,            ery and precision navigation will           1999), 22.
  31st Air Defense Artillery Brigade,       change the nature of future wars,               6. Ibid.
                                                                                            7. Mark K. Megeehee, A Pocket History of Air De-
  Fort Bliss, Texas. He received a B.S.     which are as likely to be waged in          fense Artillery (Washington, DC: US Government Print-
                                                                                        ing Office (GPO), date unknown), 14.
  from the US Military Academy, an          cities as on open plains and deserts.           8. Tilford, 18.
  M.A. from Indiana University and          In future wars, enemy C2 facilities             9. Richard A. Chilcoat, 1998 Strategic Assessment:
                                                                                        Engaging Power for Peace (Washington, DC: GPO),
  is a graduate of the Command and          might collocate with hospitals and          143.
  General Staff College, the Armed                                                        10. George J. Trent, “Current and Projected National
  Forces Staff College and the Army         schools.                                    Security Threats,” statement to the US Senate Armed
                                                                                        Services Committee, February 1999, 1.
  War College. He has served in                Aerial platforms such as cruise            11. Henry H. Shelton, Joint Strategy Review (Wash-
  various Army command and staff            missiles, ballistic missiles, rockets       ington, DC: GPO, 1998).
                                                                                          12. Trent.
  positions.                                and unmanned aerial platforms will            13. Tilford, 12.
                                                                                          14. Army Science and Technology Board, Commission
                                            be projected into the sky from mobile       on Engineering and Technical Systems, National Re-

102                                                                                    July-August 2001          l   MILITARY REVIEW
search Council, Star 21: Strategic Technologies for the         19. Ibid., iii.                                            24. Ibid.
Army of the Twenty-First Century (Washington, DC: Na-           20. US General Accounting Office (GAO), Report to          25. Ibid., 9.
tional Academy Press, May 1992), 244.                        the Chairman, Subcommittee on Military Research and           26. US Army Air Defense Artillery School briefing, “Air
   15. “Why Ballistic Missile Defenses?” Ballistics Mis-     Development, Committee on Armed Services, House of          Defense Capabilities,” Fort Bliss, Texas, 1999.
sile Defense Home Page, <               Representatives, Cruise Missile Defense: Progress             27. Department of Defense, Office of the Director, Op-
bmdolink/html/threat.html>, 8 October 1999.                  Made But Significant Challenges Remain (March 1999),        erational Test and Evaluation, Forward Area Air Defense
   16. Dennis M. Gormley, “Hedging Against the Cruise        1.
Missile Threat,” Survival (Spring 1998), International In-      21. Ibid., 3.                                            Command, Control, Communications and Intelligence
stitute for Strategic Studies, <          22. Department of Army (DA), United States Army          (FAAD C3I) and the Ground Based Sensor (GBS) Sys-
npp/gormley%20survival.htm>, 8 October 1999.                 Theater Air and Missile Defense Master Plan (Wash-          tems (Washington, DC: GPO, October 1995), i-iii.
   17. Stefan T. Passony and J.E. Pournelle, The Strat-      ington, DC: GPO, 15 June 1999), 2-6.                          28. GAO, i-iii.
egy of Technology: Winning the Decisive War (Cam-               23. Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Concept for     29. Joint Theater and Missile Defense Organization,
bridge, MA: Cambridge University Press, 1970), 37.           Future Joint Operations: Expanding Joint Vision 2010        Joint Staff, Capabilities Briefing, 1999.
   18. Tilford, 18.                                          (Washington, DC: GPO, May 1997), 2.                           30. Ibid.

          Review Essay
Six Presidents and China
Lewis Bernstein
   In 1950, because they feared an                           policy through Democratic and Re-                           curity adviser for China. Oksenberg
invasion of Manchuria, the Chinese                           publican administrations, Tyler ob-                         called Kissinger’s actions “perfectly
Communists fought in the Korean                              serves that every US president since                        defensible” and recommended that
War and suffered many thousands                              Richard M. Nixon—whatever his                               Carter maintain them.
of casualties. In 1962 the People’s                          ideological stripe or predilection—                            The book plunges into a narra-
Republic of China fought with India                          has ultimately engaged China simply                         tive of bureaucratic warfare inherent
to safeguard a route to Chinese                              because no other reasonable choice                          in the policy process. In every ad-
nuclear test sites free from potential                       was available. Tyler’s study defends                        ministration ambitious men battled
Russian interference. In 1979 China                          pragmatism in foreign policy.                               with and sought to undermine each
fought a short, violent border war                              Nixon’s achievement in opening                           other for control of US China policy.
with Vietnam that again resulted in                          China was more operational than                             Of necessity, the book plunges into
thousands of Chinese casualties.                             conceptual because using China as                           a narration of bureaucratic warfare.
This time China fought to express its                        a strategic counterbalance against                          One learns that Kissinger regarded
displeasure over Vietnam’s invasion                          the Soviet Union had long tanta-                            the US Department of State as a
of Cambodia. In 1996 this scenario                           lized US President Lyndon B. John-                          greater adversary than the Chinese.
was partially reenacted in the Taiwan                        son. Nixon longed for an opening                            He flattered Zhou Enlai, fawned over
Straits. No one can doubt China’s                            to China, but international political                       Mao Zedong and curried favor with
willingness to go to war to defend                           conditions were not right. The                              Nixon. During Carter’s administra-
what it considers its vital interests.                       United States was embroiled in Viet-                        tion, National Security Adviser
   Patrick Tyler, a former Beijing bu-                       nam, and China was in the throes of                         Zbigniew Brzezinski regarded Secre-
reau chief for The New York Times,                           the Cultural Revolution. Tyler’s de-                        tary of State Cyrus Vance as danger-
has written a contemporary investi-                          tailed examination of the ways                              ous to Carter’s interests and policy
gative history of the United States’                         Nixon and National Security Ad-                             conceptions as the Soviets were. He
China policy titled A Great Wall: Six                        viser Henry Kissinger managed to                            devoted much time and energy trying
Presidents and China (New York:                              open China leaves out none of their                         to defeat Vance. President Ronald
Public Affairs Press, 1999, $27.50).                         faults and gives them the credit                            Reagan’s administration fared no bet-
The book is based on memoirs and                             they deserve.                                               ter. The duel between Alexander Haig
archival research, declassified US                              Kissinger approached China with                          and his adversaries was as hard
government documents and exten-                              a unique mixture of fawning and ar-                         fought as the negotiations with the
sive interviews with policy makers.                          rogance. James Lilley, a CIA career                         Chinese.
   With so much known about the                              officer and later an ambassador to                             If this account is to be believed,
policy-making process, it would                              China, describes Kissinger’s method:                        and there is no reason to doubt it,
seem impossible to add anything                              “You embrace them, you make all the                         US foreign policy was determined
new to the already existing record.                          right statements about building                             more by timing and the ebb and flow
Tyler’s material is fuller on the US                         strong and genuine relations and all                        of events than by planning. Policies
side, but he tells as much as he can                         the while you run espionage opera-                          succeeded or failed because of exter-
about Chinese actions, detailing the                         tions” against them. The soundness                          nal events neither side controlled.
complex and complicated story of                             of Kissinger’s secret understandings                        The Carter administration succeeded
recent Sino-American relations with                          with the Chinese emerged in a review                        in normalizing relations with China—
clarity and dispatch.                                        conducted by Michel Oksenberg,                              but not because its officials were
   Tracing the shifts of US-China                            President Jimmie Carter’s national se-                      any smarter than their predecessors

MILITARY REVIEW                l   July-August 2001                                                                                                                        103
were but because Carter’s tenure co-     centrated on human rights. While             over this “secondary issue.” How-
incided with Deng Xiaoping’s rise to     trendy and fashionable, it was not           ever, neither has fundamentally
power. Brzezinski is presented as a      sensible. Abandoned as unwork-               changed its position. In fact, the
fierce bureaucratic warrior and dis-     able, its epitaph was uttered in 1993        United States and China now find
sembler eager to negotiate an agree-     by US Ambassador to China J.                 themselves in a position where Tai-
ment that put a premium on decep-        Stapleton Roy: “If you look at the           wan controls both countries’ poli-
tion and ambiguity. These diplomatic     last 150 years since the Opium Wars,         cies.
attributes allowed Chinese and US        then you can’t avoid the conclusion             It would be tempting to attribute
negotiators to disagree while pub-       that the last 15 years have been the         the US position solely to the Repub-
licly insisting they agreed.             best 15 years in China’s modern his-         lican right and the Taiwan lobby—as
   One is left to wonder at the bu-                                                   the Chinese Communists do—and
                                         tory, and of those 15 years the last 2
reaucratic maneuvering in the sev-                                                    China’s position on Taiwan to emo-
                                         years are the best in terms of pros-
eral presidential administrations, but                                                tional nationalism—as some Ameri-
                                         perity, individual choice, access to         cans do. The reality is more and less
to recoil in horror or total disbelief   outside sources of information, free-
would be a sterile, self-defeating re-                                                complicated. China believes its na-
                                         dom of movement within the coun-             tional security depends on possess-
action. Instead, one should remember     try and stable domestic conditions.”         ing the island. The United States be-
that the power struggle in Washing-      When reporters asked Roy whether             lieves its position in Asia depends
ton was minor-league when com-           China could satisfy Clinton’s de-            on brokering a peaceful resolution to
pared to the power struggle occur-       mands for improved human rights,             the problem. Events since 1972 have
ring in Beijing, where the personal      he said he did not know because the          aggravated and combined these stra-
stakes were much higher.                 administration had never defined             tegic dilemmas. As Tyler shows, in-
   If US policy makers did not dis-      what it meant by significant pro-            attention combined with realpolitik
play the naked self-interest they did    gress.                                       could lead to a war born out of mis-
and were not the ruthless bureau-           In Clinton’s defense, it must be          calculation.
cratic warriors they were, how could     added that he eventually moved back
they have hoped to deal with the         toward a more realistic China policy.             Lewis Bernstein is Assistant
Chinese? In the end, success went        But, according to Tyler, Clinton re-           Command Historian, US Army
to those with the most developed,        mained inattentive toward Chinese              Combined Arms Center, Fort
focused, aggressive self-interest.       Premier Zhu Rongji’s overtures for a           Leavenworth. He received a B.A.
Tyler emphasizes that distinctions in    compromise on outstanding issues               from Brooklyn College of the City
US China policy are not between          that were preventing China from en-            of New York, an M.A. from Penn-
Republicans and Democrats or liber-      tering the World Trade Organization.           sylvania State University and an
als and conservatives; they are be-      This inattention, plus foreign policy          M.B.A. and Ph.D. from the Univer-
tween those who had the rigorous         initiatives created solely to satisfy          sity of Kansas. He has been a
self-discipline to look at Sino-Ameri-   internal political constituencies, was         Fulbright fellow and taught East
can relations the way they were          the primary characteristic of the              and Southeast Asia history at The
                                                                                        Kansas City Art Institute, Brigham
evolving and those deluded by pre-       Clinton administration’s China policy.
                                                                                        Young University and Boise State
conceptions.                                The Taiwan issue has long been              University. His reviews appear fre-
   Tyler presents President Bill Clin-   an irritant. China and the United              quently in Military Review, Journal
ton as an unfocused president who        States have consistently underesti-            of Urban History, American Nep-
ignored his foreign policy, national     mated Taiwan’s strategic importance            tune, the Journal of Military His-
security and intelligence advisers.      to the other. Tyler reveals that each          tory and Pacific Historical Review.
He created a China policy that con-      thought the other would compromise

Post-Cold War Priorities
Major John A. Nagl, US Army
   Although the post-Cold War               The Congressional Budget Office           port for a larger defense budget.
world has changed the nature of          estimates that the Department of             “Train wreck” might be too gentle a
conflict, many argue that the US mili-   Defense (DOD) requires an addi-              description of the crisis the military
tary cannot adapt quickly enough.        tional $30 to $50 billion a year to          now faces.
The military is one-third smaller than   maintain current force structure with-          The National Intelligence Council
it was in 1990, and its budget is        out any additional spending on Na-           (NIC) does the Central Intelligence
about 30 percent lower. It now faces     tional Missile Defense, which is             Agency’s deep, broad thinking. It
a shortfall significant enough to be     President George W. Bush’s top de-           “speaks authoritatively on substan-
described as a coming train wreck.       fense priority. Yet, there is little sup-    tive issues for the [Intelligence]

104                                                                                  July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
                                                                                                        REVIEW E SSAY
Community as a whole.”1 In Decem-           Certain to be popular in the Washing-      ways for DOD to save money on in-
ber 2000, the NIC released Global           ton policy community, this book will       frastructure:
Trends 2015: A Dialogue About the           not make most military readers happy.         l Close commissaries and DODDS
Future with Nongovernmental Ex-             But, that does not mean it should          schools.
perts.2 The report is an unclassified       not be read. In fact, no one who              l Privatize military housing in
estimate of the most likely threats the     cares about the US military’s future       the Continental United States.
United States will confront over the        can avoid engaging with the argu-             l Consolidate basic training
mid-term. It identifies demographics,       ments presented.                           among all uniformed services.
natural resources and environmental            The book’s thesis is that “stuck in        According to Williams, these rec-
concerns, science and technology,           the Cold War pattern of force struc-       ommendations would result in $10
globalization, national and interna-        ture, organization, equipment and in-      billion in annual savings—“enough
tional governance, future conflicts         frastructure, the US military has frit-    to pay the Army’s entire procurement
and the US role as major drivers and        tered away a decade of opportunity         bill for FY2000.”13 While Williams
trends that will shape the world of         to reshape itself for the future.”8 The    sees the political roadblocks in store
2015. The results are of great impor-       chapter authors propose changes            for her proposals, she argues that if
tance to military planners.                 they feel DOD could adapt to its vi-       DOD “has to choose between giv-
   The NIC suggests that for at least       sion of the post-Cold War world            ing up infrastructure and reducing
the next 15 years “the risk of war          while avoiding the coming budget           its force structure and moderniza-
among developed countries will be           impasse.                                   tion goals, then $10 billion in infra-
low.” 3 However, the developing                Cindy Williams, who until re-           structure savings might be worth
world will see substantial conflict,        cently led the National Security Di-       fighting for.”14
ranging from “relatively frequent           vision of the Congressional Budget            After chapters analyzing the lim-
small-scale internal upheavals to less      Office, is the book’s editor. She is       ited savings that might be gained by
frequent regional interstate wars. . . .    not afraid to take on the defense          reducing US spending on nuclear
Internal conflicts stemming from reli-      establishment’s sacred cows. Her           weapons—brilliantly titled “The
gious, ethnic, economic or political        January 2000 Washington Post opin-         Hunt for Small Potatoes”—and ask-
disputes will remain at current levels      ion piece, “Our GI’s Earn Enough,”         ing European allies to improve their
or even increase.”4 These conflicts         caused a firestorm.9 But, this is not      capabilities, comes the most interest-
will not present a substantial US na-       a book written by liberals or crack-       ing part of the book for military read-
tional security threat. Because of the      pots. The authors are highly re-           ers. The authors suggest force-struc-
overwhelming US military superiority        spected security professionals who         ture changes that would shift the
over the developing world, most fu-         do not believe that the US Armed           balance of power among the armed
ture adversaries “will try to circum-       Forces have adapted to the sort of         services.
vent or minimize US strengths and ex-       challenges they will likely face.             The current allocation of re-
ploit perceived weaknesses. . . . Such         The authors are not decision-           sources among the services has re-
asymmetric approaches—whether               makers but advise congressmen on           mained amazingly steady for the
undertaken by states or nonstate ac-        defense budget decisions. They ar-         past 35 years—25 percent for the
tors—will become the dominant               gue that “it makes no sense to revert      Army, 31 percent for the Navy and
characteristic of most threats to the       to Cold War levels of defense spend-       25 percent for the Air Force. This al-
US homeland.”5                              ing [when] threats to national secu-       location might no longer be appropri-
   The NIC hedges its bet that the          rity are as low as they are today,”        ate in the post-Cold War world.
United States will not face a more se-      particularly when “the United States       Owen Cote, Karl Mueller and James
rious threat than “states of concern”       is marching into the new century           Quinlivan suggest strategies and
like North Korea or Iraq. But, it admits,   with forces designed for the old           force structures that place more em-
“[E]stimates of China beyond five           one.”10 They adhere to this point te-      phasis on Navy, Air Force and Army
years are fraught with unknowables.”6       naciously.                                 contributions to future US security
The report’s clear conclusion is that          Lawrence Korb, Assistant Secretary      needs. Their recommendations de-
asymmetric conflict and US interven-        of Defense under President Ronald          mand attention.
tion in failed or failing states are far    Reagan, suggests that the FY2000              In “Buying ‘From the Sea . . . ,’”
more likely than conventional armed         budget of $300 billion “should be more     Cote suggests that the major theater
conflicts for which US Armed Forces         than adequate to safeguard US inter-       wars of the future are likely to occur
are primarily organized, trained and        ests in the world.”11 He also feels that   along the world’s littorals and that
equipped.                                   “throwing more money at the Penta-         future US access to ports and air-
   The report’s conclusions provide         gon would legitimize the failure of its    fields is likely to diminish. This
a starting point for the authors of         leaders to come to grips with the          would require more emphasis on the
Holding the Line: U.S. Defense Alter-       post-Cold War world.”12 After that         Navy’s ability to operate without
natives for the Early 21st Century.7        cheery beginning, Williams suggests        fixed bases overseas. He argues that

MILITARY REVIEW      l   July-August 2001                                                                                105
the Navy does not need more ships        division and six National Guard divi-     not. But, readers who believe that
to accomplish its missions but           sions. He would create seven IBCTs        President George W. Bush’s admin-
should use existing nuclear missile      from four AC brigades and from            istration is unlikely to heed these
submarines to carry conventional         three National Guard enhanced sepa-       recommendations have not studied
guided missiles. Cote would free up      rate brigades (ESB). He would retain      budget realities or the lessons of
defense dollars for the conversion       the Army’s four light divisions but       history. Traditionally, Republican
by canceling the F-22, Comanche          convert three heavy National Guard        presidents have been fiscal conser-
and Crusader and by eliminating the      ESB’s to armored carrier units built      vatives unwilling to spend large
82d Airborne Division, the 101st Air     from mechanized infantry battalions.      sums on defense. In fact, during the
Assault Division, 18th Airborne          Doing so would provide more sur-          early 1950s, Army Chief of Staff Mat-
Corps Headquarters, all eight Army       vivability, lethality and firepower to    thew Ridgway resigned in protest at
National Guard divisions, and one        light forces.                             President and former General Dwight
National Guard and two Active Com-          Quinlivan would keep the               D. Eisenhower’s cuts in the Army’s
ponent (AC) F-16 wings. He would         Comanche but eliminate the Cru-           force structure under the “New
also convert the 10th Mountain and       sader—something on which all the          Look” defense policy.19
25th Infantry into interim brigade       authors agree. He feels that DOD             The authors of Global Trends
combat teams (IBCTs). He says that       could save more money by eliminat-        2015 justify the argument that a new
“light Army divisions, and the air-      ing two aircraft carriers. Quinlivan’s    look at defense policy is warranted.
borne and air assault divisions in       argument is based largely on the as-      The authors of Holding the Line
particular, make no sense in either      sumption that the United States will      outline a new defense policy. Both
the near or the longer term security     continue to engage in smaller-scale       sources should be read by defense
environment.”15                          contingencies with “boots on the          leaders responsible for structuring
   Mueller’s “Flexible Power Projec-     ground.” These missions, which the        the US military for the demands of
tion for a Dynamic World: Exploiting     Army accepts unenthusiastically, are      the post-Cold War world.
the Potential of Air Power” contin-      the only hope the Army’s advocate
ues the assault on Army force struc-     can find for preserving Army force                              NOTES
                                                                                       1. National Intelligence Agency, “Global Trends 2015:
ture. Mueller argues that “techno-       structure in the 21st century.            A Dialogue About the Future with Nongovernmental Ex-
logical changes of the late twentieth       The book concludes with a sum-         perts,” Publications and Reports, <>, De-
                                                                                   cember 2000, 7.
century, together with the strategic     mary of each author’s conclusions.            2. Ibid.
                                                                                       3. Ibid., 20.
conditions of the early twenty-first,    Noting that the current two-major-            4. Ibid.
provide the opportunity to use the       theater-wars (MTW) strategy “is not           5. Ibid., 22.
                                                                                       6. Ibid., 24.
increased potential of land-based air    producing the capabilities needed             7. Cindy Williams, ed, Holding the Line: U.S. Defense
                                                                                   Alternatives for the Early 21st Century (Cambridge, MA:
power to provide some of the capa-       for the challenges that the military      The MIT Press, February 2001).
bilities for which the United States     faces [and will continue to face] in          8. Ibid., 8.
                                                                                       9. Williams, “Our GI’s Earn Enough,” Washington
has traditionally relied on land and     the future,” Williams argues that         Post (12 January 2000), A19.
                                                                                     10. Williams, Holding the Line, 2.
naval forces.”16 He would eliminate      such a strategy no longer makes             11. Ibid., 54.
two AC heavy divisions and reduce        sense.18 The US should:                     12. Ibid.
                                                                                     13. Ibid., 77.
each of the National Guard’s eight          l Increase readiness for smaller-        14. Ibid.
                                                                                     15. Ibid., 171.
divisions to one independent bri-        scale contingencies while assigning         16. Ibid., 225.
                                                                                     17. Ibid., 227.
gade. He would eliminate two 82d         a lower priority to preparing for the       18. Ibid., 256.
Airborne brigades and one 101st Air      second MTW.                                 19. Russell F. Weigley, The American Way of War: A
                                                                                   History of United States Military Strategy and Policy
Assault brigade. The two remaining          l Hold defense spending con-           (Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 1973), 418-
light divisions would become IBCTs.      stant in real dollars for the next de-
Mueller’s underlying philosophy is       cade.
that “for the scenarios that are plau-      l Cut infrastructure.                         Major John A. Nagl is an armor
sible in the coming decade, the total       l Reduce and reshape conven-              officer at Fort Riley, Kansas. He re-
combat capability of the US Army is      tional force structure by cutting a          ceived a B.S. from the US Military
less important than is the amount of     number of National Guard and AC              Academy, an M.Phil and a D.Phil
capability that can be deployed rea-     Army divisions.                              from Oxford University and an
sonably quickly.”17                         l Eliminate at least one aircraft         M.M.A.S. from the Command and
   Quinlivan defends the Army’s          carrier and remove at least two Air          General Staff College. He has
                                                                                      served in various command and
honor in the face of this onslaught.     Force wings.
                                                                                      staff positions in the United States,
But, according to several authors I         l Severely reduce or cut entirely
                                                                                      Southwest Asia and Germany and
have talked with recently, his is the    purchases of the Crusader,                   has taught international relations
hardest argument to support. In          Comanche, F-22, the Joint Strike             and national security studies at the
“Flexible Ground Forces,” Quinlivan      Fighter and the F/A-18E.                     US Military Academy.
would stand down one AC heavy               Christmas this most decidedly is

106                                                                               July-August 2001         l   MILITARY REVIEW
       BooK Reviews
THE AMBIVALENCE OF THE                       conflict. Military professionals must        ward for La Patria.
SACRED: Religion, Violence, and              address root causes and move to-                The book is worthwhile for re-
Reconciliation, R. Scott Appleby,            ward a vision of the future. While           search value alone. It has a compre-
Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Boulder,    military professionals will never have       hensive bibliography of more than
CO, 2000, 429 pages, $65.00.                 the credibility to foster reconciliation     500 works, yet it remains enjoyable
   Violence that ends without recon-         that community-based religious orga-         and easy to read. It is a must for any-
ciliation will not lead to permanent         nizations have, they can facilitate the      one having dealings with Latin
peace. Religious organizations,              process. Therefore, they should un-          American militaries.
rooted in local traditions and culture,      derstand how vital reconciliation is,                  LCDR Al Musgrove, USN,
offer the greatest hope for reconcili-       how it occurs and which actors                       Fort Leavenworth, Kansas
ation between warring factions. The          might best bring it about.
pivotal roles for external organiza-             MAJ Andrea Crunkhorn, USA,
tions are identifying the credible re-                      Monument, Colorado            STONEWALL JACKSON: A Life
ligious organizations and training                                                        Portrait, K.M. Kostyal, Taylor Publish-
them as national mediators in con-                                                        ing Company, Dallas, TX, 1999, 214
flict transformation and reconcilia-         FOR LA PATRIA: Politics and the              pages, $29.95.
tion.                                        Armed Forces in Latin America, Brian            On the night of 1 May 1863, Tho-
   Reconciliation is the end point of        Loveman, Scholarly Resources Inc.,           mas J. “Stonewall” Jackson was mor-
a process of finding facts, identify-        Wilmington, DE, 1999, 331 pages,             tally wounded by friendly fire. The
ing perpetrators, paying reparations,        $23.95.                                      statement, “Jackson is dead,” caused
healing memories and offering and               In Latin America La Patria means          a collective shudder across the Con-
accepting forgiveness. Religious             more than one’s country. It encom-           federate States of America.
activists are committed to peace             passes a community, a culture, a ter-           The Confederacy’s top two gen-
and reconciliation with enemies.             ritory and, most of all, a spiritual prin-   erals—Robert E. Lee and Jackson—
Religious extremists are committed           ciple. For Latin American militaries,        were trained at West Point and
to reconciliation’s defeat by any            service to La Patria is more than de-        served in the Mexican War. During
means.                                       fending the nation against all exter-        the first two years of the Civil War,
   In The Ambivalence of the Sa-             nal and internal threats. They view          Lee—the master planner—and Jack-
cred, B. Scott Appleby expands the           their roles to be above changing             son—his able executor—became an
definitions associated with religious        threats and enemies. They are the            invincible fighting team. Jackson’s
organizations and clarifies the roles        ultimate defenders—the essence of            untimely death was a heavy blow to
they play in national politics, conflict     La Patria—willing to take whatever           the Confederate cause. Months later
and peace. Because they are already          action is needed to protect their            Lee lamented, “If I [would have] had
part of the community, religious or-         land.                                        Stonewall Jackson at Gettysburg, I
ganizations have great credibility              In For La Patria, Brian Loveman           would have won that fight.”
and legitimacy in conflict transforma-       builds a strong case for this interpre-         In Stonewall Jackson: A Life
tion. Their roles in reconciliation in-      tation of Latin American armed               Portrait, K.M. Kostyal takes a fresh
clude conflict resolution, conflict          forces. His systematic use of history        look at the legendary Confederate
management and structural reforma-           is far more rigorous than any anec-          lieutenant general. Drawing from ar-
tion. But, they also must translate          dotal evidence. From his discussion          chival and period photographs and
the religious language of reconcilia-        of Iberian colonial influence, through       illustrations, and supporting them
tion into a human-rights discourse           European and North American influ-           with an easy-to-read, understandable
and a broad picture of hope and              ences in the 19th and 20th centuries,        text, Kostyal assembles Jackson’s life
peace that appeal to all sides. Appleby      he tells the logical story of this de-       portrait. Jackson was careless in ap-
thoroughly supports his thesis. He           veloping mindset. Loveman’s follow-          pearance, eccentric in habits, devout
establishes clear definitions, argues        on discussion applying this idea to          in religion and cause and heroic in
powerfully for reconciliation and            the 21st-century world environment           battle. Jackson—the man and leg-
clearly delineates the legitimacy that       is noteworthy. There is no reason to         end—looms large through the mag-
religious activists who pursue it al-        think that this driving reason for be-       nifying glass of history.
ready enjoy.                                 ing will change among Latin Ameri-              Although Civil War scholars will
   Military professionals work with          can armed forces. It will, however,          find little that is new, this deeply
crises around the globe, including           continue to develop in new ways as           moving collection of Jackson imag-
those that involve centuries of con-         new missions appear. And, in what-           ery honors the memory of a great
flict. Interposing armed forces be-          ever actions arise, Latin American           military mind. No one with an inter-
tween factions will not solve the            armed forces will assuredly go for-          est in Jackson or the Civil War can

MILITARY REVIEW       l   July-August 2001                                                                                  107
afford to ignore this book. It pro-        from the centrality of supply and de-         Stokes argues that China’s quest
vides valuable insight into how Jack-      mand to the perceived certainty that       for strategic modernization is driven
son learned the art of war.                official and unofficial forces within      by its emerging doctrine, which em-
      LTC Glenn E. Gutting, USAR,          societies are committed antidrug ac-       phasizes strategic attack against the
             Fayetteville, Arkansas        tivists. Competing and winning             most critical enemy targets. Much of
                                           against these assumptions are four         this has been influenced by China’s
                                           principle advantages narcotraffickers      “Gulf War Syndrome” caused by
                                           leverage to their benefit: the develop-    the enormous US success, at least at
                                           ment of anarchy, the globalization         operational and tactical levels, which
                                           and politicization of organized crime,     has awakened Chinese leaders to
                                           the globalization of international fi-     the preeminence of air power, long-
                                           nance, and the potential of narcotics      range precision strike and informa-
                                           trafficking as an instrument of state      tion-based warfare.
                                           power.                                        Stokes extensively cites Chinese
                                              While essential and relevant, this      sources that cover PLA military
                                           book is difficult to read. Many of the     space and directed-energy weapon
                                           most important facts are hidden            development. He also supports
                                           within wider political theory. But,        claims with his experience as the as-
                                           Jordon’s message is essential in           sistant air attaché in Beijing from
                                           the current operational environ-           1992 to 1995. He provides a bal-
                                           ment. He underscores the critical          anced analysis and refrains from
                                           and comprehensive security threat          painting too rosy a picture of China’s
                                           that narcotrafficking poses. He also       modernization effort. He points out
                                           outlines a way allied and US policy-       the obstacles that could complicate
                                           makers could move forward.                 China’s ability to modernize the PLA,
DRUG POLITICS: Dirty Money and                     MAJ Nathan P. Freier, USA,         including budgetary constraints,
Democracies, David C. Jordan, Univer-               Fort Leavenworth, Kansas          technological overloads and the dif-
sity of Oklahoma Press, Norman, 1999,
                                                                                      ficulties of integrating systems ac-
288 pages, $24.95.
                                                                                      quired from different sources.
   David C. Jordan’s Drug Politics         CHINA’S STRATEGIC MODERN-                     Perhaps Stokes’s greatest contri-
comprehensively treats the troubling       IZATION: Implications for the              bution is his illumination of a pos-
connections between the global nar-        United States, Mark A. Stokes, Strate-     sible blind spot in conventional
cotics industry and power centers in       gic Studies Institute, US Government       analysis of the PLA. By highlighting
national and international politics.       Printing Office, Washington, DC, 1999,     the PLA’s strategic modernization,
Jordan asserts that narcotraffickers’      229 pages, out of print.                   which is often overlooked, Stokes
core strength is the ability to subvert       Credit Mark A. Stokes for provid-       warns that the PLA is a significant
legitimate organs of state power           ing an alternative view to the con-        force. Still, he cautions against over-
within target societies. That ability,     ventional portrayal of the People’s        reaction.
coupled with the globalization of          Republic of China People’s Libera-            While providing evidence of
capital markets and organized crime,       tion Army (PLA) as a backward con-         PLA’s strategic modernization,
makes narcotrafficking the world’s         tinental force. Stokes posits that the     Stokes falls short of qualitatively as-
most influential and pervasive crimi-      PLA is poised to make significant          sessing how well the US military can
nal enterprise.                            progress in its long-range precision       counter such capability, particularly
   Jordan sees current counter-            strike capabilities and aerospace de-      if both sides square off over Taiwan.
narcotics policy as predestined to         fense, primarily backed by the quest       Overall, Stokes’s well-supported, ex-
fail. Policymakers ignore the funda-       for information dominance. The             tensively documented and balanced
mental character of the illegal nar-       United States must not underesti-          study contributes a significant new
cotics industry, preferring to apply a     mate China’s ability to make revolu-       facet to the analysis of the PLA’s ca-
simplistic, liberal, economic template     tionary breakthroughs in areas key to      pabilities.
to what is a more comprehensive            achieving its goals.                                      MAJ Terry M.M. Siow,
sociopolitical problem. Conventional          Stokes supports his thesis with                                     Singapore
counternarcotics strategy relies nar-      substantive evidence and sound rea-
rowly on limiting the supply and de-       soning. His extensive investigation
mand of illicit narcotics. In doing so,    traces China’s technological devel-        LEGACY OF HONOR: The Life of
policymakers ignore the roots that         opments in indigenous defense in-          Rafael Chacon, A Nineteenth-
narcotraffickers weave into the so-        dustries that point toward an ag-          Century New Mexican, Jacqueline
cial, political and financial structures   gressive quest for information             Dorgan Meketa, Yucca Tree Press, Las
of producer and client societies.          dominance, credible long-range pre-        Cruces, NM, 2000, 456 pages, $19.00.
   Jordan points out the fallacies in      cision strike capabilities and aero-          Almost all memoirs written by sol-
prevailing assumptions, which range        space defense.                             diers and officers of the frontier US

108                                                                                  July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
                                                                                                        BOOK R EVIEWS
                                            never fully fluent in English, Chacon        smashes it with intellectual prose,
                                            contributed more to his adopted              which convinces me that Ford might
                                            country than most born with far              have known cars but not history.
                                            greater advantages.                                    MAJ John K. Tien, USA,
                                                         MAJ Peter Molin, USA,                          Cypress, California
                                                    Fort Leavenworth, Kansas

                                                                                         THE SECRET WAR AGAINST
                                            THE EMERGING STRATEGIC                       HANOI, Richard H. Shultz Jr.,
                                            ENVIRONMENT: Challenges of the               HarperCollins Publishers, NY, 1999, 394
                                            Twenty-First Century, Williamson             pages, $27.50.
                                            Murray, ed., Praeger Publishers, Westport,       In The Secret War Against
                                            CT, 1999, 320 pages, $59.95.                 Hanoi—a superb history of US op-
                                               The Emerging Strategic Envi-              erations against North Vietnam—Ri-
                                            ronment: Challenges of the Twenty-           chard H. Shultz Jr. provides the first
                                            First Century contains relevant,             comprehensive look at this extensive
                                            timely essays about the strategic di-        adjunct to the Vietnam War. The ac-
                                            rections of Europe and the Middle            tions and activities chronicled con-
Army in the 19th century are worthy         East as well as how the US military          stitute the largest, most complex US
for their literary merit and descrip-       is dealing with what many people             covert operation since World War II.
tions of Army service. Legacy of            believe is a revolution in military af-      Shultz’s research is supported by re-
Honor continues that tradition, with        fairs. Editor Williamson Murray be-          cently declassified top-secret docu-
a twist. Major Rafael Chacon wrote          lieves strategic thinkers should re-         ments. He also interviewed senior
his memoirs in Spanish and tells the        ally be focusing on Europe, which in         government policymakers and those
little-known story of the Spanish-          this case extends to Russia, and the         actually involved in the operations.
speaking units and soldiers who             Middle East—not Asia—as the stra-                The organization was established
served on the Union side during the         tegic fulcrum for the world’s strate-        in Saigon to plan and conduct secret
Civil War. Jacqueline Dorgan Meketa         gic balance.                                 operations under its cover name—
translates Chacon’s prose and adds             The essays’ regional and country-         the “Studies and Observations
significant commentary, notes, maps         specific writers showcase changes            Group” (SOG). Its membership in-
and pictures.                               in European foreign-policy attitudes         cluded representatives from all the
    Chacon witnessed the downfall           since the end of the Cold War. Al-           services and the CIA. SOG evolved
of Mexican sovereignty in New               though many of the essayists point           from President John F. Kennedy’s
Mexico and the coming of the Ameri-         to economics as key to the emerging          dissatisfaction with the CIA’s guer-
cans. In true 19th-century fashion,         strategic environment, their unwill-         rilla operations against North Viet-
he lived a varied life, working as a        ingness to see economic globaliza-           nam. He gave the responsibility to
rancher, farmer, trader, scout, miner,      tion by way of China, Japan and the          the Department of Defense, where
clerk, lawyer and holder of many po-        rest of Asia is mystifying consider-         SOG operated under the direction of
litical offices both before and after       ing the current economic power and           the Pentagon’s Special Operations
the Civil War. Born in 1833, his life       potential of those countries. Still, by      Group.
extended long into the 20th-century.        focusing on countries linked by his-             SOG had four core missions:
    Of greatest interest to the military    tory and land mass, the writers offer        training and inserting agent teams
reader is Chacon’s account of his           provocative, useful alternatives to          and deception programs; conduct-
time as a company commander in the          some of the world’s most vexing              ing psychological warfare; maintain-
1st Infantry Regiment, New Mexico           problems.                                    ing maritime operations against the
Volunteers, during the Civil War.              The book also gives military pro-         North Vietnamese coast; and dis-
Among other duties, he led his com-         fessionals the opportunity to peer           rupting activities along the Ho Chi
pany in the Battle of Valverde—the          into the soul of a true strategic            Minh Trail. How these core missions
biggest battle of the war fought in         thinker—Murray himself. His 23-              were planned, supported and carried
New Mexico Territory. The regiment          page introduction weaves history             out constitutes the heart of the
escorted Arizona’s first territorial        and philosophy into a conclusion             book.
governor into the region and partici-       that is both interesting and impor-              The secondary story—lessons
pated in numerous engagements               tant. He closes with a too-short             for the future—involves the politics
with hostile Indians.                       afterword that attempts to answer            of how SOG was directed and used;
    Although Chacon certainly suf-          the questions of why we do what              the restrictions under which it oper-
fered prejudicial behavior from Anglo       we do in the military and how the            ated; its manning; and military atti-
subordinates and superiors, Legacy          21st century might change this.              tudes toward these types of opera-
of Honor demonstrates that he re-              A historian of the highest order,         tions, particularly the Army’s. These
ceived much praise for his service,         Murray clearly believes the art of           lessons provide valuable guidelines
especially from his immediate supe-         looking back is key to looking for-          for how not to do things in the fu-
rior, the famous explorer Colonel           ward. He uses industrialist Henry            ture.
Christopher “Kit” Carson. Although          Ford’s “history is bunk” quote then              This book publicly acknowledges

MILITARY REVIEW      l   July-August 2001                                                                                  109
the sacrifice of the thousands of          disagree that the term is a good de-         If a historian should read docu-
people involved and contributes tre-       scriptor, but I believe Winschel is       ments until he can hear the people
mendously to Vietnam War literature.       the first to use it.                      speak, J.Y. Wong has been reading
All military and civilians in covert-         Also, the description of locating      and listening. In this lengthy, well-
operations roles should read this          the USS Cairo fails to credit the ma-     written, revisionist work he explores
book.                                      jor contributor to the effort—Warren      some of the reasons nations go to
         LTC John Hardaway, USA,           Graubau. Graubau, a retired US Army       war and describes imperialism in a
    Retired, Leavenworth, Kansas           Corps of Engineer civilian employee       specific context from multiple view-
                                           in the Vicksburg district, has been       points. Long used as an epithet, few
                                           long overlooked and neglected for         have attempted to depict imperialism
VICKSBURG: Fall of the Confeder-           his substantial contributions to the      as a historical phenomenon in spe-
ate Gibraltar, Terrence J. Winschel,       discovery of the Cairo.                   cific contexts. Drawing on years of
McWhiney Foundation Press, Abilene,           On the plus side, the book’s maps      research, Wong places this small
TX, 1999, 168 pages, $12.95.               are fully sufficient for a general un-    war in its British, Indian and Chinese
   For a conflict that lasted only four    derstanding of events, and for those      context, highlighting mutual misun-
years and occurred 135 years ago,          who are beginning a study of the          derstanding, arrogance and xeno-
the American Civil War has                 Vicksburg Campaign, this is a great       phobia.
spawned a publication industry.            primer. I also highly recommend it to        Wong chronologically narrates
Terry J. Winschel’s Vicksburg: Fall        students who are planning to visit        events then analyzes issues. He
of the Confederate Gibraltar, is an-       Vicksburg.                                places primary responsibility for the
other welcomed addition, although I           LTC Edwin L. Kennedy Jr., USA,         war’s outbreak directly on British
rate his book as a good text for a be-          Retired, Leavenworth, Kansas         consul Harry Parkes and Sir John
ginner or novice.                                                                    Bowring, the plenipotentiary in
   Winschel does an excellent job of                                                 Hong Kong. Chinese obduracy on
covering a major campaign with just                                                  diplomatic representation in Beijing
enough detail to make sense, but                                                     maddened the British government.
several points will raise military read-                                             Yet, this was only one issue con-
ers’ antennae. Winschel identifies                                                   nected with upholding British impe-
only two of three levels of war—the                                                  rial prosperity and expansion. The
tactical and strategic. The intermedi-                                               war connected domestic politics to
ate, operational level is post-Vietnam                                               the politics of opium, cotton and
US military vocabulary taxonomy. In                                                  tea—the pillars of British prosperity.
                                                                                        Wong shows how the British pre-
this book it would have been useful
                                                                                     pared an alliance against China be-
to differentiate it from the strategic                                               fore the Arrow incident and how the
level to provide an understanding of                                                 need to safeguard diplomatic, strate-
how Union General Ulysses S. Grant                                                   gic and economic power led to a se-
developed his plan in complemen-                                                     ries of wars against the Chinese,
tary stages.                                                                         Sikhs, Russians and army mutineers
   One glaring inaccuracy is Win-                                                    in India. He restores the war’s role
schel’s discussion of the 13th Infan-                                                as an equilibrium mechanism, believ-
try shoulder patch. The designation                                                  ing that while economic and political
“First at Vicksburg” is an honor, al-      DEADLY DREAMS: Opium, Impe-               questions are important, Great Power
though I consider this dubious be-         rialism and the Arrow War (1856-          political conflicts are fundamentally
cause the unit was repulsed! It is not     1860) in China, J.Y. Wong, Cambridge      about power.
worn on any US Army patch. The             University Press, New York, 542 pages,       In the mid-19th century, British
13th Infantry has not been a separate      $69.95.                                   imperial power rested on Indian rev-
regimental organization for well over         The Arrow War is an important          enues, which depended on revenue
50 years and even then it was not          event in 19th century Anglo-Chi-          from the opium monopoly. Part of
worn as a regimental shoulder patch.       nese relations, but scholars have         Britain’s economic problems, which
The slogan is located on the regi-         never placed it in a satisfactory his-    many scholars trace solely to domes-
mental colors, as is the custom of         torical framework. Most view it as a      tic causes, might have come from the
regimental mottoes, and it is also lo-     part of the attempt to force China to     post-1885 growth of Chinese opium
cated on the distinctive unit insignia.    accept Western norms in foreign re-       production and its deleterious effect
   Another oddity is that Winschel         lations. Marxists interpret the war       on Indian revenue. Everyone who
cites Grant’s turning movement from        according to the evil nature and in-      wants to understand the connec-
Port Gibson to Vicksburg as having         nate rapacity of Western imperialism.     tions between internal politics, diplo-
“often” been referred to as the “blitz-    This interpretation fits nicely into      macy, strategy and economics
krieg of the Vicksburg campaign.” I        Chinese preconceptions and empha-         should read this book.
am relatively well versed on the cam-      sizes the differences between a cul-               Lewis Bernstein, Assistant
paign and have only seen the phrase        ture steeped in the rule of law and                 Command Historian, Fort
used once—in this book. I do not           one steeped in the rule of virtue.                        Leavenworth, Kansas

110                                                                                 July-August 2001   l   MILITARY REVIEW
                                                                                                      BOOK R EVIEWS
                                           their lifetimes fade in reputation         personal diaries, opened in 1998, give
                                           once they pass from the scene. Oth-        insight into what Eisenhower really
                                           ers grow in stature. Eisenhower’s          thought as opposed to what he re-
                                           fame has passed through these              vealed publicly. For example, he
                                           stages. He was a respected general,        made claims that neither known facts
                                           beloved president and a leader in cri-     nor his diaries support, such as his
                                           sis. He was esteemed as a military         claim that he was a great proponent
                                           hero but reviled by scholars. Not          of armor and willing to take risks. In
                                           surprisingly, there are few objective      reality, at the moment risks appeared,
                                           views of Eisenhower.                       he backed off. When confronted
                                              Perret’s Eisenhower emerges as a        with difficult situations, he often
                                           real man with all of a real man’s          compromised his beliefs to advance
                                           foibles. Perret makes no claim that        his career.
                                           Eisenhower was a brilliant general or         The chapters on Eisenhower’s
                                           a brilliant president. Instead, he por-    political career are the most useful
                                           trays Eisenhower as a good theater         for readers intensely interested in
                                           commander and a good and active            military history. Eisenhower led the
EISENHOWER, Geoffrey Perret, Ran-          president.                                 way to Soviet containment during
 Ordering JFQ
dom House, New York, 1999, 685 pages,         Eisenhower was self-effacing but        NSC 68. Such massive retaliation
$35.00.                                    possessed an enormous ego, which           was pure Eisenhower. Massive re-
   General Dwight D. Eisenhower            is not surprising to those of us who       taliation in practice means first strike,
has long been a favorite of biogra-        have served with senior officers. He       which explains a great deal about
phers. He is perceived as a hero and       had a sense of who he was and the          Eisenhower’s less-than-enthusiastic
a good president. Geoffrey Perret          import of his position, yet he tried to    support of Army positions during
does Eisenhower justice without            remain “Ike” of Abilene, Kansas.           his tenure. Eisenhower’s diminution
succumbing entirely to the legend.         Perret ably navigates the rocks and        of the Army in the 1950s infuriated
   Eisenhower certainly achieved           shoals of this complex yet uncompli-       his old friends and subordinates. He
legendary status in his own lifetime,      cated man’s life.                          made decisions without regard to
but not without critics. Some men             Perret also brings new scholar-         old loyalties but also without malice
who are perceived as great during          ship to the story. Previously closed       or romance.
                                                                                         Some readers will find Perret insuf-
                                                                                      ficiently critical of Eisenhower. How-
                                                                                      ever, the book is a well-balanced ac-
                                                                                      count of a man who is deservedly
                                                                                      among the pantheon of great Ameri-
AccessingPastMRIssues                      Choose the year in which the article       cans.
   Q. I really enjoyed James B.            you wish to see appears. When you                 COL Gregory Fontenot, USA,
Patrick’s review essay, “A War To          find the article you wish to read or                    Retired, Lansing, Kansas
Be Won” in the May-June 2001 is-           download, click on the .pdf icon at
sue of Military Review. One foot-          the left of the underlined title. NOTE:
note referred to Colonel Dan Bolger’s      You will need to download the Ado-         DISTORTING DEFENSE: Network
Military Review article, “Zero De-         be Acrobat Reader to access the ar-        and National Security, Stephen P.
fects,” from the May 1991 issue. Is        ticles available for free download.        Aubin, Praeger Publishers, Westport, CT,
there a way to access Bolger’s article                                                1999, 262 pages, $62.95.
electronically?                            Editor’sNote                                  The ability of major US networks
           Colonel Jim Danley, USA,           In “GPS Vulnerabilities” by LTC
                                           Thomas K. Adams (Military Re-              to report significant events fairly, ac-
   US Central Command, MacDill                                                        curately and objectively is a topic of
        Air Force Base, Tampa, FL          view, March-April 2001), the last
                                           sentence on page 11 should read:           great debate. This is especially true
                                           “Since the FAA also intends to             for reports pertaining to national de-
   A. To access past issues, go to the                                                fense and security. Given the role of
Center for Army Lessons Learned            broadcast GPS correction via geo-
                                           stationary satellites, worldwide air-      evening newscasts as principle con-
(CALL) site at <http://leav-err.>. Choose “CALL          lines will likely take advantage of this   veyors of information, watchdogs
Database (Public Access).” You             highly accurate system for normal en       and interpreters of government poli-
might have to click through two            route navigation, collision avoidance      cies, how accurately do they
warnings before getting to the next        and airport ground navigation.”            present defense and security issues
page. Choose “Military Review En-          Also, the USAF does not invest             to the public they serve? Do they
glish Edition.” You can also access        $600 million annually for commercial       present these issues in the proper
MR’s Portuguese and Spanish edi-           tracking purposes; it maintains the        context without distorting or omit-
tions at this site.                        GPS that private firms use. MR re-         ting facts? Stephen D. Aubin says,
   MR’s archives go back to 1922.          grets any confusion.                       “No.”

MILITARY REVIEW     l   July-August 2001                                                                                  111
   Aubin’s well-written book, Dis-           Aubin attributes the high per-         weapons and how industry pro-
torting Defense: Network and Na-          centage of shortcomings to the            duces them.
tional Security, should be read by        media’s narrow focus on scandals,            Reasons why networks fall short
those who desire fully to compre-         corruption and other sensational          when covering such issues include
hend how much the “CNN effect”            stories about the misuse of govern-       correspondents’ lack of knowledge
affects US national defense and se-       ment funds. These shortcomings            and the need for brevity. Other prob-
curity. Targeting the day-to-day net-     were noted throughout the presiden-       lems include lack of balance, over-
work coverage of national security        cies of Ronald Reagan and George          emphasis on drama or bad news,
news, Aubin finds that reporters of-      Bush. Networks told of the govern-        loaded labeling or advocacy and bad
ten violate basic journalistic stan-      ment buying expensive, sophisti-          news judgment. Aubin recommends
dards. After meticulously dissecting      cated weapons that did not work;          that networks remedy the situation
national-security news into 12 dis-       kickbacks between defense compa-          by giving greater attention to special-
tinct topics, he assesses each using      nies and part suppliers; and signifi-     ists, such as Pentagon correspon-
Society of Professional Journalists       cant increases in costs during weap-      dents, and avoiding using abbrevi-
standards. He critiques major net-        ons systems development because           ated reports by anchorpersons.
work news reports from identical time     of mismanagement and improper                At times, Aubin voices a strong
periods during selected years within      charges. Networks seldom addressed        personal opinion on investigated is-
four presidential administrations. He     the defense budget in terms of pro-       sues rather than allowing his well-
superbly supports his findings with       curement; operations and personnel        documented results to do the con-
concise, concrete examples of net-        costs; capabilities of new weapons        vincing. However, the book clearly
work coverage that clearly demon-         systems and technology to support         authenticates the problematic cover-
strate shortcomings. He then offers       military strategy; and the acquisition    age of defense and security news.
sound recommendations to correct          and development processes that de-             MAJ Vincent V. Quarles, USA,
patterns of problematic coverage.         fine how the government buys new                           Sutherlin, Virginia

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112                                                                                July-August 2001        l   MILITARY REVIEW

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