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Lessons of Operation Iraq Freedom. Highly-trained units, led by innovative and flexible leaders will defeat a larger enemy ! A smaller, professional force, supported by precision weaponry and good intelligence outmaneuvered dominated its adversary.

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lessons of operation iraq freedom
Lessons of Operation Iraq Freedom
  • Highly-trained units, led by innovative and flexible leaders will defeat a larger enemy!
    • A smaller, professional force, supported by precision weaponry and good intelligence outmaneuvered dominated its adversary.
    • Tactical units, with sufficient training, performed superbly.
    • Balance of forces -SOF, light, heavy and air – optimized performance.
  • Still room for improvement!
    • Extraordinary measures required to create ready units
      • By default, “unit manning” replaced the Individual Replacement System-(peacetime personnel policies waived)
      • Extended, stealthy deployment (3ID brigades sequentially deployed for Operation Desert Winter/Spring, May 02-Jan 03)
    • Obsolete planning process required unnecessary force levels
    • Too many levels of command slow decision making
      • Might have reached Baghdad even faster!
obstacles to transformation
Obstacles To Transformation
  • WW II / Cold War personnel systemoutmoded
    • IRS keeps units at low levels of training readiness
      • Turnover and turbulence require constant retraining
      • Army units in Korea the most unready in the Army
    • OPMS based on obsolete concepts
      • Constant movement prohibits true professionalism
      • Officers become careerists
  • WW II / Cold War philosophy dominates doctrine and force structure
    • Tiered readiness means some units are always second class citizens
    • Industrial approach to war (2nd Generation war) does not take advantage of highly professional units, synergy created by joint operations, and modern technology
  • ATLDP and other findings: “Army Culture is Out of Balance,” and it has become “a culture of micromanagement” [other services are the same]
what we can do now
What We Can Do Now!
  • Immediate actions (Fix Now!)
    • Embrace maneuver warfare doctrine as demonstrated in Iraq
    • Start restructuring as the Army returns from Iraq
      • Create battle groups
      • Replace individual replacement system with unit manning
      • Begin Home Basing personnel
      • Institute unit rotation to Korea and Europe
      • Streamline hierarchal organizations by eliminating needless headquarters
      • Phase out unnecessary capabilities that are irrelevant due to current conditions, e.g., Short range Air Defense (SHORAD) in an era of total air dominance
  • Evolutionary actions (Fix Over Time!)
    • Change DOPMA
      • Replace “Up or Out” with Up or Stay—All Ranks!
      • Reduce number of branches in officer corps
      • Downsize the officer corps
    • Create a rigorous officer accession system
    • Establish a core of highly educated civilian and military personnel, steeped in joint warfare & doctrine at the operational and strategic levels
where to begin
Where to Begin?
  • Focus on personnel and unit transformation for immediate action
    • Create policies to make the Army more effective in the near term
      • We can do much better with what we have today!
      • Current 10 Divisions can transform into 24 battle groups using a unit manning system
        • Unit-manned formations are more capable than IRS-based units
        • Home-basing improves retention and performance
  • Start the process with the Personnel Transformation/21st Century Commission
    • Mission: provide a workable roadmap for personnel reform
      • Composed of military and civilian experts
      • Report directly to the Secretary of Defense
      • Provide recommendations for the FY05 Budget submission.