Department of Education
Graduate Research Management Office
Research Papers
Academic Year 2004-


Street Smarts: Unconventional Warriors in Contemporary Joint Urban Operations

by Edward J. Amato MAJ, USA
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

U.S. Army Special Forces (SF) has historically conducted Unconventional Warfare (UW) in the remote, rural, under-developed regions of the world. This thesis analyzes the relevance of UW to contemporary joint urban operations (JUO) during Military Operations Other Than War (MOOTW) and Stability and Support Operations (SASO). America's pre-eminence on the conventional battlefield, and the asymmetric advantages cities offer, should compel adversaries to engage us on urban terrain. Despite this observation, current doctrine inadequately prepares our forces for MOOTW or SASO in cities. Modernization efforts focus predominantly on improving high-intensity combat skills, and developing technological combat-multipliers. During MOOTW and SASO casualties, collateral damage, and political consequences can rapidly erode public support; conventional combat operations may entail excessive political risk. Forces trained for unit maneuver warfare are not sufficient for stabilizing politically charged conflicts short of war. Unique capabilities, training, and experience conducting UW makes SF ideally suited for conducting JUO in this arena. A case study of U.S. involvement in Bosnia-Herzegovina demonstrates the unique capabilities SF provides commanders, not otherwise available in the extant force structure. This thesis advocates using UW to counter urban, asymmetric threats, and concludes with a recommendation for developing amplifying doctrine for conducting UW in urban areas.

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Tail of the Dragon: Sri Lankan Efforts to Subdue the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam

by Edward J. Amato MAJ, USA
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, KS

This operational-level analysis, focused on campaign-planning issues, identifies shortcomings in the counterinsurgency efforts of the government of Sri Lanka (GSL), as it continues its conflict against the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). Despite foreign military and economic assistance, the GSL’s concerted efforts for nearly twenty years have failed to either defeat the LTTE or achieve a peaceful settlement. The LTTE continues to function effectively, if not thrive. The framework provided by JP 5-00.1 Joint Doctrine for Campaign Planning has been used to analyze three GSL campaigns: Operation Riviresa in 1995, Operation Jaya Sikurui in 1996, and Operation Kinihira in 2000. US principles of Internal Defense and Development and Foreign Internal Defense have also been utilized in assessing these campaigns. The thesis concludes that the GSL’s violation of several campaign-planning fundamentals significantly contributed to poor operational and counterinsurgency performance. Operations were compromised by insufficient political-military synchronization and poor tactical preparedness. The thesis validates the use of JP 5-00.1 as an effective methodology for analyzing situations other than war, and advocates the publication of principles concerning tactics, techniques, and procedures as a supplement to current US counterinsurgency doctrine.

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Southeast Asia: America’s Next Frontier in the Global War on Terrorism

by Leroy R. Barker Jr. LTC, USA
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, KS

America’s strategy to combat terrorism, resulting from Al-Qaeda’s 2001 attacks, falls short of its intent to defeat transnational terrorism. While the tenets of the current counterterrorism strategy were written broadly to enable global employment, this template approach proved ineffective. While focusing its efforts on dismantling terrorist organizations in Afghanistan and Iraq, America neglected parts in Southeast Asia that provided sanctuary to Islamic terrorists. Such sanctuaries facilitated the regrouping, recruiting, and training of Al-Qaeda operatives to conduct subsequent attacks against America and its allies throughout the world. The central research question is: What strategy can the US employ to eliminate Al-Qaeda’s influence throughout the Southeast Asian countries of Indonesia, Malaysia, and the Philippines? Recommended strategy changes were generated from applying a three-step analysis approach. First, analyzing the adversary established a foundation from which to develop recommendations to counter Al-Qaeda’s operations. Second, analyzing three Southeast Asian governments’ responses to terrorist threats within their country assisted in the formulation of a counterterror strategy for the region. Finally, the analysis of the current counterterror strategy resulted in recommended adjustments to each of America’s instruments of national power--diplomatic, informational, military, and economic--to facilitate elimination of Al-Qaeda’s influence in Southeast Asia.

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Transformation: A Bold Case for Unconventional Warfare

by Steven P. Basilici CPT, USA; Jeremy Simmons MAJ, USA
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

A “Bold Case for Unconventional Warfare” argues for the establishment of a new branch of service, with the sole responsibility of conducting Unconventional Warfare. The thesis statement is: Unconventional Warfare is a viable tool for achieving national security objectives under certain circumstances. Hypothesis One states that in order for UW to be effective it must be managed in accordance with specific principles. Hypothesis Two states that to optimize UW a new branch of service under the Department of Defense is required.

Chapter II establishes the strategic requirement, laying the foundation by explaining the differences between UW and conventional warfare. Chapter III explains the requirements for dealing with substate conflicts. Chapter IV articulates the operational construct for UW revolving around an indigenous-based force in order for the US to gain influence in a targeted population.

The second half of this thesis, Chapters V – VI, analyzes policy, doctrine, and schooling, as well as case studies of USSF efforts in the Vietnam War and El Salvador in order to reveal a conventional military aversion to the use of UW. The conceptual discussion of Chapters I thru IV supported by the research of Chapters V and VI together make “A Bold Case for UW.”

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The Role of United States Army Special Forces in Operation NOBEL OBELISK

by Francis M. Beaudette COL, USA
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, KS

Future political and social upheaval on the African continent will continue to endanger U.S. citizens living abroad. Deployed Special Forces operational detachments are ideally suited to assist joint task forces in the execution of noncombatant evacuations. The central research question is: How did U.S. Army Special Forces contribute to the success of a joint noncombatant evacuation operation (NEO) in Sierra Leone? The first step examined the events of Operation NOBEL OBELISK and to a lesser degree Operation FIRM RESPONSE. The second step examined available doctrine to determine if it was sufficient to effectively prepare a detachment for noncombatant evacuations. The final step determined the primary lessons learned and recommendations necessary to prepare a Special Forces operational detachment alpha for future mission success. The analysis of Operation NOBEL OBELISK recommended that SFODAs play a vital role in the successful conduct of NEOs. This additional mission requirement should be addressed in the initial planning phases for any team deploying outside the United States.

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Required Operational Capabilities for Urban Combat

by Gregory Bendewald MAJ, USA
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

There exists no Joint doctrine to help commanders plan and coordinate the complex tasks of urban operations. Proposed Joint doctrine, JP3-06 DRAFT, attempts to alleviate this shortfall by providing commanders a framework and list of required operational capabilities to work with in the complex urban environment and states, "The complexity of urban terrain and the presence of noncombatants may combine to erode the effectiveness of current operational capabilities." The purpose of this thesis is to analyze the relevance of the proposed Joint doctrine's required operational capabilities (ROC): Command, Control and Connnunications (C3); Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR); Fires; Maneuver; and Force Protection.

The thesis attempts to determine if these are the key requirements for planning and executing successful urban operations. Successful combat operations are defined by doctrine as the fighting force maintaining a combat effective strength of seventy percent and the capability of conducting follow on missions. This thesis will analyze four case studies to detennine the most critical elements for successfully planning and executing urban operations. It will then compare those elements against the proposed Joint doctrine's required operational capabilities in order to determine the relevance of the ROC's.

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The African Crisis Response Initiative : Command and Control of a Multi-National Force

by Scott E. Brower MAJ, USA
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

As the lone remaining superpower, the United States is often viewed as the world's police force and expected to help restore order wherever problems arise. But as the size of the United States' military continues to shrink and the number of regional conflicts continues to grow the United States finds itself in a precarious position. How can it help attain regional stability throughout the world with an ever shrinking military? The African Crisis Response Initiative (ACRI) is one tool being used in an effort to attain this goal in Africa. The overall aim of the ACRI is to train a division's worth of battalions in the necessary tasks to conduct limited Peacekeeping Operations (PKOs) and Humanitarian Assistance Operations (HUMROs). The hope is that with this capability, African nations will be capable of solving their own problems with only minimal assistance being required from the United States. The purpose of this thesis is to identify critical factors and considerations for command and control of a multi-national force in Africa, participating in either PKOs or HUMROs.

This thesis will examine recent conflicts in Africa, what lessons have been learned by peacekeeping forces used there, U.S. command and control doctrine, and what is currently being done with ACRI. The thesis will conclude with recommendations for what must be done on both the international and brigade level in the area of command and control, in order to provide the necessary framework to make ACRI successful.

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Combat Search and Rescue: A Search for Tomorrow

by Erik M. Brown LTC, USA; Renuart Victor E. Jr. LTC, USA
U.S. Army War College, Carlisle, Pennsylvania

Combat search and rescue through history has lacked priority and has been poorly funded. During periods of conflict the importance of a viable rescue force Is realized and funding is provided. The U.S. Air Force is the proponent agency for search and rescue but chose not to deploy any forces to Desert Storm. The United States Special Operations Command has forces that can perform the mission and was called upon during Desert Storm. The purpose of this paper is to identify a solution to the roles and missions problem of combat search and rescue and assign it to a proponent that will insure a robust capability is always available. While several solutions have been recommended by the air staff, the authors have recommended a different solution that aligns the rescue forces with the warfighters that they will be required to support.

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Army Special Operations Integration at the Combat Training Centers

by Erik M. Brown COL, USA
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, KS

This thesis examines how the Army might enhance and improve integration of Army Special Operations Forces (ARSOF) and conventional forces at the Combat Training Centers (CTCs). Given the current nature of operations, integration of ARSOF with conventional forces is a routine event during operations worldwide. As the premier training venues for the Army, the CTCs provide battle-focused, relevant, full-spectrum training to Army units. The necessity to train as the Army fights means that ARSOF integration should occur at the CTCs just as it occurs during actual operations. This study examines the status of integrated training at the CTCs today and assesses elements of the training that need to be continued, as well as those elements that could be improved. Finally, this study concludes by proposing a series of feasible, acceptable, and suitable solutions for more effective integration at the CTCs. The recommendations are based on feedback from subject matter experts at the CTCs, as well as a number of outside organizations.

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US Army Special Forces Operational Interoperability with the US Army’s Objective Force - The Future of Special Forces Liaison and Coordination Elements

by Christopher D. Call LTC, USA
School of Advanced Military Studies
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, KS

Operational interoperability, the ability of units to provide services to and accept services from other units or forces and to use the services so exchanged to enable them to operate effectively together, is critical and central to effective joint operations. Liaison and coordination elements are central to ensuring operational interoperability between branches of the Army. Current US Army Special Forces (SF) doctrine addressing liaison and coordination elements has evolved over the past decades to meet past requirements for interoperability. However, higher degrees of interoperability, both technical and operational, are critical to enabling the Army and SF Objective Forces. The SF Objective Force must transform its liaison and coordination elements to ensure that it can maintain the high levels of interoperability required for future operations with the Army Objective Force. The monograph provides recommendations to transform SF liaison elements in light of the transformation characteristics and requirements of the Army and SF Objective Forces. The paper does this by first examining the definition and current importance of interoperability for the Army as a whole and then specifically for SF. The paper then describes how the Army and SF are transforming their forces and how SF transformation concepts support the overall military transformation campaign. The monograph then examines how interoperability is an essential enabler in that process and how SF liaison and coordination elements are key to achieving the levels of interoperability required by the transformation concepts. Last, the monograph describes how the SF liaison and coordination elements should change to achieve the required levels of interoperability. SF must make organizational changes within its liaison and coordination elements to ensure that they continue to be effective. The paper demonstrates that the increased requirements for interoperability between SF and the Army Objective Force are derived from the SF Objective Force operational characteristics and capabilities. Liaison and coordination elements are essential to achieving this higher level of interoperability because they provide a substitute for technical interoperability, are central to ensuring a common relevant operational picture (CROP), and allow integrated planning and coordination. SF liaison and coordination elements must be increased in size, utilized regularly at levels below corps, made more flexible and responsive, and include representatives from all of joint SOF. US Army Special Operations Command (USASOC) must make accompanying changes in key areas of the Army functional areas (DOTLMSPF) (specifically material, leader development, and doctrine) as well as its organizational culture to enable the liaison and coordination elements to be efficient and effective organizations. It must transform its material acquisition process to ensure that increasing technical interoperability is a major factor. USASOC must transform its education and training to ensure that it fosters a culture of inclusiveness and develops officers and soldiers who work naturally in joint and coalition environments. The Army Objective Force must, likewise, develop organizations and doctrine to support it own set of liaison and coordination elements that can be incorporated in SF command and staff elements.

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An Alternate Military Strategy for the War on Terrorism

by Peter J. Canonico MAJ, USA
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

Alternate Military Strategy for the War on Terrorism calls for addressing the war as a global insurgency. Addressing the war on terrorism as a Global Insurgency provides an alternative strategic framework for prosecuting the campaign. This study is intended to determine the utility of analyzing the war on terrorism using an insurgency/counterinsurgency conceptual framework. Additionally, the recommendations can be applied to the strategic campaign, even if it is politically unfeasible to address the war as an insurgency.

The first half of the study is intended to provide a thorough understanding of Dr. McCormick’s COIN model. This is done by, first, providing an overview of the model and, second, applying the model to a historical case. The second half of the study addresses the war on terrorism. The COIN model is applied to the war on terrorism based on the al Qaeda Network and the United States’ vision and mission for the conflict. Conclusions from the analysis are broken down into ten recommendations for the U.S. strategic framework for approaching the war. The final chapter addresses the utility provided by the insurgency/counterinsurgency framework as applied to the war on terrorism.

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Planning and Training Considerations for Emerging Trends in Special Operations and General Purpose Force Operational Integration

by William J. Carty COL, USA
Naval War College, Newport, RI

Evidence from recent operations shows an increasing tendency of employing Special Operations Forces (SOF) with General Purpose Forces (GPF). The larger degree of cooperation and mutual support necessitates Joint Forces Command (JFCOM), United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) and the Services change current planning and training framework to better reflect present and future operational employment expectations. Previously SOF and GPF planners primarily focused on deconfliction of operations when needed, but Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) and Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) have demonstrated a need for greater cooperation and SOF/GPF integration at all levels. Integration of SOF and GPF is happening on the battlefield now. Recent changes to doctrine necessitate changes in military education and training to reinforce the successes and mitigate shortcomings and risks found in current SOF and GPF integration. JFCOM can drive this with initiatives in these areas with the support of the Services, USSOCOM, and the training proponents and centers. Implementation of this training and education will increase employment options for Combatant Commanders, JTF Commanders, and unit leaders at all levels. The changing nature of conflict under the Global War on Terror (GWOT), limited resources, broad operational scope, and increased operational tempo require all assets be employed to the greatest effect and as efficiently as possible. More effective integration of SOF and GPF is a step towards this end.

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Historical Analysis of the Battle of Little Bighorn Utilizing the Joint Conflict and Tactical Simulation (JCATS)

by Michael A. Charlebois MAJ, USA; Keith E. Pecha MAJ, USA
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

The purpose of this thesis is to determine which of three competing theories of outcomes for the Battle of Little Bighorn is most the plausible utilizing the Joint Conflict and Tactical Simulation (JCATS) program developed by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. There are many practical benefits that JCATS can provide today’s military with regard to training and educating soldiers for future conflicts. JCATS can be used to train soldiers in planning and executing missions in ways not feasible during conventional field training exercises utilizing live bodies and real vehicles. It is also being increasingly used for actual mission planning. However, very little has been done using JCATS to war-game past operations.

There are two points to be gained by using JCATS to model a historical battle such as the Battle of Little Bighorn. First, it validates the ability of JCATS to accurately model actual historical scenarios while identifying many of the specific limitations of the program. If the military is going to use computer simulations such as JCATS in lieu of field training exercises to train soldiers, it must first be determined if the program produces realistic results. Modeling an actual battle and comparing the results of the program with what actually occurred is one means of doing so. Second, modeling historical battles, particularly defeats, may assist in discovering lessons learned. In a field training exercise, a defeated force can be brought back to life and given another opportunity to apply the lessons learned from its previous defeat. Real battles afford no such opportunity. Computer modeling of past battles would allow military planners to isolate individual events and decisions and study their impact on the outcome.

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The Effects of Information Technologies on Insurgency Conflict : Framing Future Analysis

by Joel J. Clark MAJ, USA
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

The purpose of this thesis is to develop a framework to analyze the impacts of infonnation technologies on future insurgency conflict. This objective is achieved by analyzing an existing communications model for internal war and identifying factors that will affect the use of information technology by either belligerent. These factors impact the ability of either the state government or insurgent organization to influence the state's population and international community in the struggle for state power. The factors identified range from the internal conductivity of a society to the type of government that exists within a state. Identified factors are then incorporated into the communications framework to act as a model to identify strengths and weaknesses within any specific campaign.

This thesis also addresses the interactive nature of insurgency conflict. Depending upon the information technology capability of a government or insurgent force, in which scenarios is it more beneficial to incorporate an offensive and in which a defensive strategy, given the capabilities of an opponent? This thesis is designed to be a starting point for future analysis of how emerging information technologies impact the struggle for state power between an existing government and a rebel organization within its borders.

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Command and Control of the Joint Commission Observer Program - U.S. Army Special Forces in Bosnia

by Cleveland Charles T. LTG, USA
U.S. Army War College, Carlisle, PA

In December 1996 U.S. Army Special Forces relieved the volunteers from the British Army in the Joint Commission Observer (JCO) mission in Bosnia. The JCO program provides the SFOR Commander with a means to gain access to local, regional and even national level leaders of the warring factions and other influential actors. Initiated during the United Nations Protection Force (UNPROFOR) period, these military observers gave the Commander a flexible force that could act as informal emissaries or call in air strikes. For U.S. Army Special Forces (SF) the JCO mission was a doctrinally new role. Their success in Bosnia was later affirmed by their subsequent deployment to Kosovo. The development of a JCO planning methodology was key to their success. Developed over the course of five battalion rotations, this JCO planning methodology had as its cornerstone a process that translated the CINCs operational requirements into mission guidance to the SFJCO teams. The SF experience in Bosnia also identified weaknesses in the current training regimen for Special Forces battalion commanders and staffs. SF groups and battalions should conduct Unconventional Warfare (UW) exercises periodically to ensure operations and planning procedures required in protracted special operations campaigns are improved.

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A Command and Control Structure for Joint Interagency Counter-Terrorism Operations Involving Weapons of Mass Destruction within a Regional Commander-In-Chief’s Area of Responsibility

by Kevin C. Colyer COL, USA
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, KS

The threat of state or nonstate actors conducting terrorism utilizing weapons of mass destruction (WMD) against U.S. personnel, property, or other locations of U.S. interest outside the continental U.S. or its territories represents a serious threat to U.S. vital interests. While numerous U.S. government agencies have joined the effort to prepare against this possibility, the system remains disjointed and inefficient. This study presents a command and control structure that meets the requirements of the operation to solve this dilemma. The study first examines the WMD counterterrorism environment and the agencies currently involved to determine what is required to counter the threat. From this a set of command and control criteria is established to compare against current command and control models. The results of comparing the requirements to current models revealed two gaps in the command and control of these operations. The study continues to propose an organizational structure that maintains the strengths of the current system and fills the gaps discovered during the research.

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Defeating the Modern Asymmetric Threat

by Robert J. Connor, Jr. CPT, USA
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

On February 24th, 2002 the Prime Minister of Sri Lanka entered into a Peace Agreement with the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) ending a horrific 19 year-old low-intensity conflict. Over the course of nearly two decades, the LTTE came to exemplify the modern asymmetric threat as they battled the Sri Lankan Armed Forces (SLAF) and for a period an Indian Peace Keeping Force (IPKF). The anthropology in Chapter II, history in Chapter III, and explanation of the Tigers in Chapter IV describes most of the intricacies of the struggle. In particular, Chapter IV offers four explanations for the prolific use of suicide bombers by the LTTE: one strategic, one operational, one psychological and one religious. Chapter V conducts an analysis of the conflict to garner what lessons can be learned from the successes and failures of the SLAF and IPKF so that U.S. commanders can better prepare their troops for future battles against organizations employing similar tactics as the LTTE. Chapter V further tests my hypothesis that the four principles of Internal Defense and Development (IDAD) as currently defined in U.S. Joint Doctrine (maximum intelligence, minimum violence, unity of effort, and responsive government) are the applicable variables in defeating the modern asymmetric threat, even those that employ suicide bombers. I defined success in defeating the modern asymmetric threat as besting the threat sufficiently through military means that the enemy lays down his arms, gives up the use of his explosives, and seeks to end the conflict peacefully by political means. With the February signing of the peace accord, having been greatly assisted by the global effects of the 9/11 attacks in the U.S., the Sri Lankan government and its armed forces finally achieved success in defeating the LTTE according to this definit ion. Whether wittingly or unwittingly at the time, the Sri Lankans were adhering to all four principles of IDAD. Some may argue that without the effects of 9/11 this would not have been possible and this may very well be true, but it does not negate my argument. Chapter VI defends this conclusion and makes some further recommendations for improving the definitions of the IDAD principles so that young U.S. military officers and non-commissioned officers may be better prepared when they come face to face with similar threats in the near future.

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Clandestine Communication Systems

by John T. Corley MAJ, USA
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

Subversive elements, whether insurgent, terrorist, or criminal, all require a communication system to coordinate and control operations. The development of a clandestine communication system requires special considerations in the development of the nodes and links that are responsible for the transmission of information. A closure analysis of these processes, professionally referred to tradecraft, assists in the planning and development of a communication system to support or counter subversive operations. This thesis analyzes tradecraft as a communication system to identify the constraints and opportunities to which different technologies have proven useful and the strengths and weaknesses of the same.

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The TAO of Special Forces: An Analysis of Counterinsurgency Doctrine

by D. Todd Reed, Jr. MAJ, USA; Adrian A. Donahoe MAJ, USA
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

The unwillingness to correct deficiencies in current COIN Doctrine or to follow the correct methods within current doctrine will lead to continued instability and possible failure of counterinsurgency operations and governments in states with large Islamic populations. The conflict in Afghanistan and Iraq is insurgent in nature, therefore requires a Counterinsurgent strategy. Current US Army Doctrine focuses entirely on the Counterguerilla aspect of an insurgency, rather than viewing the insurgency in its entirety. Therefore, not only is the COIN doctrine is inadequate, it also requires an overall governing strategy which must include the engagements of both the populace, and the infrastructure of the insurgency, as well as counterforce operations against the guerillas. The entire hierarchy of COIN Doctrine is skewed in favor of the conventional units who write it. Currently all COIN operations fall under Support and Stability Operations, as do Counterguerrilla Operations in doctrinal hierarchy that is written by the US Army Infantry Branch. However, US Army Special Forces Branch writes Insurgency and Foreign Internal Defense Doctrine (COIN falls under FID for all Internal Defense and Development [IDAD] Programs).

The unique qualifications of Special Forces units make them ideal for creating, developing, instituting, and commanding these operations. Special Forces soldiers are language and culturally trained to operate within these nations, and normally have habitual associations previously developed with the people and militaries of these nations.

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The History of the Nigerian Army and the Implications for the Future of Nigeria

by Fredrick C. Dummar COL, USA
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, KS

Ethnic and religious clashes have continued in Africa’s most densely populated nation. Nigeria is a nation of vast human and natural resource potential that has experienced extreme strife during forty years of transition from colonial rule to democratic governance. The central research questions are: How has the historical development of Nigeria’s Army effected the development of the nation-state? And how has political engagement changed the army? The first step examined the ethnic, religious factors and the history of military coups d’état. The second step examined the effect of military governance on education, the economy, and foreign policy. The final step determined the future path of Nigeria and its Army after the birth of Nigeria’s third republic. The conclusion recommended an increase in military-to-military contact with Nigeria to increase professionalism and respect for the subordination of the military to civilian authority, along with increased diplomatic efforts to help Nigerians heal the wounds of internal discord that have created the belief that military governance is the answer.

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Personnel Recovery Operations for Special Operations Forces in Urban Environments Modeling Successful Overt and Clandestine Methods of Recovery

by Marshall V. Ecklund MAJ, USA; Michael A. McNerney MAJ, USAF
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

This thesis presents two prescriptive models for approaching challenges to special operations forces with regard to personnel recovery in an urban environment. It begins by developing a model for overt recovery methods, using McRaven’s model of Special Operations as the foundation. This model is then tested against three different case studies from operations in Mogadishu, Somalia in 1993. The original six principles proposed by McRaven are complimented with four newly-prescribed principles that account for the interactions of the isolated personnel. Following this analysis, a nonconventional assisted recovery model is presented for clandestine personnel recovery methods. This model borrows the relative superiority concept from McRaven’s theory, but proposes six different principles. This model is evaluated using three case studies from the World War II era through Operation IRAQI FREEDOM. These cases support the idea that while the urban operational environment may vary across time and space, the principles supporting successful personnel recovery operations endure.

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Special Forces Assessment and Selection

by Sean P. Feeley MAJ, USA
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

The purpose of this thesis is to evaluate the Special Forces Assessment and Selection (SFAS) program conducted by the U.S. Army's John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center and School (SWCS). It seeks to determine the most accurate and relevant method of testing potential Special Forces soldiers and officers. This study focuses on the validity of the current personal attributes required in a Special Forces soldier and the current testing methods employed to measure the required attributes set forth by SWCS. It also explores the issue of an additional selection program for the potential Special Forces officer.

This study demonstrates that the current attributes required in the potential Special Forces soldier and officer are valid. However it recommends two additional attributes that will enhance the profile of the Special Forces soldier. It also demonstrates that the current testing methods of SFAS do not sufficiently test all the required attributes. This thesis recommends nine additional testing methods that adequately test all the required attributes for a Special Forces soldier and officer. This thesis focuses on the assessment and selection program of SFAS; it does not discuss standards that must be achieved by the potential Special Forces soldier and officer.

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Strategic Targeting and the War on Terror

by Fuller William Kurt LTC(P), USA
U.S. Army War College, Carlisle, Pennsylvania

This paper outlines a way to synchronize ends, ways and means in support of the global war on terror and proposes an organizational modification that can focus the interagency effort through a structured process of intelligence collection followed by a precise targeting methodology that produces the required effects by attacking the threat centers of gravity. It proposes the creation of a strategic level interagency targeting board, on equal footing with and inclusive of the National Security Council (NSC), which is solely responsible for prosecuting the strategic planning and execution of the war on terror.

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Political Violence in Eurasia: Radical Islam or Rational Acting?

by Simon C. Gardner CPT, USA
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

Much of the violence in Eurasia since the break-up of the Soviet Union has been blamed solely on radical Islamic Fundamentalism. This characterization is at best simplistic and at worst dangerously insufficient. Misunderstanding the complexities of this instability will undermine efforts by diplomats and soldiers to prevent future violence. Poorly understanding this violence will likewise hinder US and multilateral post-conflict operations. Given the high likelihood for continued instability and violence in this critical region, we must be careful to understand its causes and complexities, and to avoid applying off-the-shelf "lessons learned" from other conflicts

This thesis attempts to provide a framework to understand the complex socio-political underpinnings of societies in Central Asia and the Caucasus. The thesis dispels the popular notion that the preponderance of regional violence is purely predicated on Islamic fanaticism. Rather, through the use of three case studies of recent conflicts in the region, I show that political violence is largely the result of political entrepreneurs exploiting extant ethnic, national, and religious cleavages when opportunities arise. This violence is not representative of a deterministic "clash of civilizations". Only through understanding the fluid and malleable nature of this political violence can one craft meaningful engagement and post-conflict strategies.

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Combat Assessment of Non-Lethal Fires: the Applicability of Complex Modeling to Measure the Effectiveness of Information Operations

by Jeffrey J. Goble LTC, USA
School of Advanced Military Studies
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Ft. Leavenworth, KS

Military forces conduct information operations against one of the most complex, adaptive systems – the human mind. Linear thought processes, prevalent in the military, correspond to, and understand well, the linear mathematics that measure the effects of lethal fires. They do not lend themselves well to the thinking necessary for understanding the effects of non-lethal fires on the complex adaptive system of the human mind. While each of the capabilities of information operations (IO) has individual Measures of Effectiveness (MOE), the cumulative effects they achieve, once integrated and synchronized in IO, are not simply a sum of each of the capabilities’ MOE. Nevertheless, these non-lethal systems, synchronized in information operations, must have predictive effects in order for commanders to employ them with confidence. Therein lies the problem; comprehensive MOE for information operations do not exist.

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The Role of Special Forces in Information Operations

by Frederick C. Gottschalk LTC, USA
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, KS

This thesis examines the role of the special forces group in information operations. It focuses on providing information to the joint task force planner and the special forces unit leaders. It provides the joint forces commander and planner an understanding of special forces unit’s core capabilities, mission types, and operational methods. It provides the special forces leader an understanding of what information operations are, and how his unit fits into the overall structure of an information operation. The thesis looks at four recent operations (Just Cause, Desert Storm, Noble Obelisk and Joint Guard) and special forces unit’s missions during those operations. The missions are explained and cross-referenced with the elements of information operations (operational security, military deception, psychological operations, electronic warfare, physical destruction, physical security, counterdeception, counterpropaganda, counterintelligence, special information operations, and computer network attack) to demonstrate the potential role of special forces units in future information operations.

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Army Special Operations Forces and Marine Expeditionary Unit (Special Operations Capable) Integration: Something a Joint Task Force Commander Should Consider.

by Kevin Todd Henderson MAJ, USA
School of Advanced Military Studies
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Ft. Leavenworth, KS

Due to the current and future world events, the United States Armed Forces have to be more flexible, far reaching, and timely to react to or deter conflict. To meet these demands the military must have interoperability, which in this monograph means jointness. This monograph addressed whether it is beneficial in future conflict for a JTF commander to integrate ARSOF with a MEU (SOC). This monograph did not address the current issue of the Marine Corps developing a unit for Special Operations Command (SOCOM). However, this paper explored the possibility of the interoperability of the MEU (SOC), a conventional marine unit, and ARSOF.

Operation Assured Response and Operation Enduring Freedom – Philippines were used as case studies. The analysis of the case studies revealed issues of basing, logistics, force protection, MEDEVAC, and mobility. Each issue was addressed with the benefits of integrating ARSOF and a MEU (SOC).

In order to make the recommendations a reality; this monograph concludes there is a need to improve the officer education system, update doctrine, and the MEU (SOC) and ARSOF need interoperability training during the MEU pre-deployment training.

The theme of this monograph was interoperability and time liness. Today, the U.S. military is deployed worldwide. In order to meet the demands there needs to be an understanding of jointness. One service cannot accomplish all the current missions alone. During planning, staffs and commanders should understand the power and consider utilizing the combined capabilities of ARSOF and the MEU (SOC). This monograph has demonstrated that by using ARSOF and the MEU (SOC), JTF commanders would have more versatility and responsiveness.

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The Integration of Special Operations Forces into the Joint Targeting Process

by Johnny L. Hester COL, USA
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, KS

Presently, evidence shows that Special Operations Forces may not be fully utilized in the joint targeting process. I believe that Special Operations Forces can be employed in new and improved ways in order to better facilitate the Joint Force Commander’s fight. I obtained information to support my position by using a Delphi Study to solicit the aid of experts on the joint targeting process to supply information concerning how Special Operations Forces are being presently utilized and opinions on how these forces could be better utilized by the Joint Forces Commander. The Delphi Study involves selecting experts from the field and from military academic institutions to form two panels. They were asked to formulate with prompts how they felt Special Operations Forces are presently being utilized and how they should be utilized by the Joint Forces Commander. A Likert style scale was used to determine consensus on each of the responses. Based on these responses, analysis and conclusions were formed to determine how Special Operations Forces should be more effectively utilized in new and improved ways to facilitate the Joint Forces Commander’s fight. The evidence supports the conclusion that Special Operations Forces should be integrated at every phase of the joint targeting process in very specific as well as general ways. Technological and political changes are taking place today that require that the United States Army be prepared to fight in every conceivable environment and under any conceivable conditions and restraints. Recent events in Afghanistan and Iraq testify to the fact that Special Operations Force, with the proper integration into and the support of the joint targeting process, are truly indispensable on the battlefield as well as before and after the conflict.

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The Misapplication of the Malayan Counterinsurgency Model to the Strategic Hamlet Program

by James M. Higgins COL, USA
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, KS

The strategic hamlet program in Vietnam was destined to failure because of a misapplication of the Malayan counterinsurgency model. The ethnic composition of the population, the nature of the insurgency, and the inherent capabilities of the bureaucracy created a unique set of conditions in Malaya. These conditions allowed the British colonial government to implement an effective counterinsurgency strategy that isolated the guerrillas. The focus of the strategy was the resettlement of the rural population away from the jungle. The South Vietnamese and their American and British advisers misapplied the Malayan strategy in the implementation of the strategic hamlet program. The program was designed to isolate the rural Vietnamese from the Viet Cong. The authorities, however, failed to understand how the conditions in South Vietnam differed from Malaya. The impact of these differences destined the program to failure. This thesis draws from primary sources written by personnel who were involved in both counterinsurgencies. It also outlines lessons learned from the misapplication that may be applied to future operations.

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Base Defense at the Special Forces Forward Operational Base

by Curtis W. Hubbard LTC, USA
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, KS

Special Forces forward operational bases (FOB) are essential for mission and contingency planning as well as for the preparation, infiltration and exfiltration of Operational Detachment Alphas (ODA). Therefore, the defense of this command and control headquarters is critical for preserving combat power and synchronizing military actions in a theater of operations. Because the enemy has the capability of projecting forces with the objective of disrupting US military operations, FOBs have become likely targets. According to SF doctrine, FOBs should be located in secure areas with MP or host-nation personnel providing the bulk of the security force. Although this situation is preferable, it is by no means assured. FOBs should be able to provide their own security in the event other forces are not available or when rapid deployment restricts the flow of conventional forces into a theater of operations. After-action review results from the Joint Readiness Training Center demonstrate that many SF battalions are not prepared to execute base defense tasks without the assistance of other forces. Many SF commanders do not consider base defense a mission essential task and the result is a lack of training by many of their personnel. This study analyzes joint and SF doctrine, observations from the field, and the effects of the contemporary operating environment to identify weaknesses in the readiness of SF battalions. This project attempts to answer three major questions that are the basis for the research. 1) With the emergence of an asymmetrical threat in the contemporary operating environment, does current doctrine adequately and realistically address base defense measures at the FOB? 2) Can SF commanders assume that attachments from other units will be available to defend FOBs? 3) Has the nature of the threat changed significantly enough to alter current thinking? This study leads to the conclusions that SF should make base defense a priority, modify its doctrine, implement new training strategies, and procure base defense equipment.

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The Russian Military in the Year 2000

by James F. Mcllmail LT, USN; James L. Jaworski CPT USA
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

Through the use of content analysis, this paper attempts to paint a picture of the Russian military in the year 2000 and its impact on the US national security strategy. The research begins by defining the origin of Russian national security policy and how that translates into military policy and doctrine. A framework for evaluating Russian military doctrines is provided with a chronology of the military reform process and the related doctrinal reforms that has its birth in the 1987 announcement of a "defensive-defense." Following from the doctrinal variant framework the new strategic missions of the 1992 draft military doctrine are presented with an analysis that shows they are a clear departure from the past and truly represent a "defensive-defense" type doctrine. Additionally, a comparison is made with the current military reform ongoing in Russia with the historical prededent of the Russian military reform of 1924-25. A rough outline of the seperate branches of the Russian military both present and future is provided based on the ongoing trends in the reform procss. This thumbnail sketch of the Russian military then assists in the analysis and conclusion that even after a possible 50% cutback in US military spending, in the year 2000 the Russian military will not pose a threat to US national security. The major caveat to this conclusion is in the realm of nuclear weapons and this issue is therefore discussed in some length.

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Building an Army in a Democracy in Hungary and Poland

by Frank E. Fields MAJ, USAF; Jack J. Jensen CPT(P) USA
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

This thesis presents a refmed treatise of civil-military relations and military professionalism which provides civilian and military personnel engaged in the reform process in Hungary and Poland with insights into the ongoing struggle to institutionalize the ideal of the democratic citizen-soldier and democratic military professionalism. Infusing democratic military professionalism and the ideal of the citizen-soldier throughout the ranks of the Hungarian Defense Forces (HDF) and the Polish Armed Forces (PAF) will help ensure that Hungary and Poland make a complete transition to democracy and achieve "human interoperability" with NATO. As Hungary and Poland democratize, they must create mechanisms of democratic political (civilian) control of the military, introduce society and the military to the concept of the democratic citizen-soldier; and institutionalize democratic military professionalism within the armed forces.

Democratization programs such as NATO's Partnership for Peace (PFP), and the United States' Joint Contact Team Program (JCTP), International Military Education and Training Program (IMET), and the George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies must help the Hungarian and Polish armed forces to institutionalize the ideal of the democratic citizen-soldier and democratic military professionalism. Without democratic military professionalism, the new armies of democratic citizen-soldiers in East Central Europe will not have the leadership, discipline, and morale necessary to be effective and reliable NATO partners.

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Application of Aspects of Unconventional Warfare: Tools for Engaging the Current and Future Threat Trends of the Post-Cold War Environment

by Ronald M. Johnson COL, USA
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, KS

This study investigates the aspects and nature of unconventional warfare operations from pre-Cold War, Cold War, and post-Cold War environments. The case studies examined are: unconventional warfare operations in the Philippines (World War II), unconventional warfare operations with the Contra Rebels, and unconventional operations during Operation Uphold Democracy. Critical factors are identified for each operation. By analyzing the critical aspects of case studies spanning a full range of periods and operational environments, parallels and trends are established. The threat trends expected in the post-Cold War environment are established and parallel aspects of unconventional warfare are evaluated against them. The post-Cold War environment promises to be one of ambiguity and asymmetry, with Special Forces soldiers working through and with indigenous forces. To be successful in this environment, Special Forces soldiers must be technically and tactically proficient, with an emphasis on indirect skills. Indirect skills enable SF soldiers to be flexible and adaptive to fluid changes in the operational and political environment. Primarily, the human element must be amplified. By focusing on cross-cultural communications, linguistics, interpersonal, human inteligence, and training skills, SF training will produce competent and versatile unconventional warriors capable of meeting the diverse threats expected in the post-Cold War environment.

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U.S. Military Role in Countering the Biological and Chemical Warfare Threat: Attacking the Enemy's Will

by Kraft Jr. James Earl COL, USA
Naval War College, Newport, Rhode Island

One of the greatest challenges facing the U.S. military today in the post-Cold War Era is countering the proliferation of biological and chemical weapons (BCW). These weapons of mass destruction (WMD) not only pose a significant threat to our military forces but to global security as well. Known adversaries of the United States currently possess such weapons and will most likely employ them in future conflicts based on the perceived attractiveness associated with BCW. The U.S. military can and must play an active role in deterring the proliferation and potential employment of these horrific weapons. Attacking the adversary's will to possess or employ them is the singular, long lasting solution to a growing global crisis. The U.S. military's principal means of attacking this will is to negate the perceived attractiveness of obtaining or already possessing a biological and chemical warfare capability. This can and must be accomplished in order to ensure global security and the protection of our forces today and into the future. Focusing our efforts otherwise is a recipe for disaster.

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Employing Special Operations Forces to Conduct Deception in Support of Shaping and Decisive Operations

by Guy A. LeMire COL, USA
School of Advanced Military Studies
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, KS

Deception has been a part of warfare throughout history and has proven a very effective force multiplier when employed correctly. Many esteemed military theorist have espoused the merits of deception including; Sun Tzu, Carl von Clausewitz, Mao Tse Tung, and Basil Liddell Hart. The challenge, however, in incorporating military deception is that it can be very difficult to plan, coordinate, and synchronize from the strategic through the operational and tactical levels of war. The increased demand for intelligence, information superiority, as well as the increased need for operational security to conduct successful deception also present a significant challenge to military planners. Additionally, deception requires a great deal of creativity and unconventional thinking on the part of the deceiver and is considered more art than science which makes it difficult to train within the military. Although the U.S. conventional military practiced deception at all levels of war on a number of occasions during World War II, it has since significantly reduced its use of deception above the tactical level, opting instead, to rely on its superior firepower, maneuver, and technology. However, while the conventional military has decreased its use of deception over the last sixty years, another force within the U.S. military, Special Operations Forces (SOF) has included the art of deception in their operations throughout their history. These highly trained soldiers depend on deception as a force multiplier and provide the U.S. military a unique tool with which to employ deception in support of large-scale conventional operations. This monograph examines the art of deception and analyzes the potential use of employing U.S. Special Operations Forces to conduct deception in support of conventional shaping and decisive operations. The study begins with an introduction to deception and discusses why, in the aggregate, deception operations have declined for the U.S. over the last six decades while at the same time, increasing for Special Operations Forces. The study then examines some of the theory and doctrine associated with deception and underscores the discrepancies between what theory and doctrine state regarding deception as opposed to what is actually practiced in the U.S. military. The next section gives a brief history of SOF followed by historical strategic and operational level deception operations which include one example where SOF functioned as a deception effort in support of conventional shaping and decisive operations. Additionally, the study analyzes some of the problems associated with the interoperability of SOF and the conventional military that have contributed to SOF’s exclusion as a supporting deception effort in past operations. The monograph concludes that the future of warfare will force the U.S. to do more with less, and as a consequence, deception operations will be employed as an economy of force option to facilitate the U.S. achieving its goals. Additionally, the monograph contends that SOF is a superb tool in the U.S. military’s arsenal to conduct deception in support of shaping and decisive operations. Finally, the study offers recommendations on how to pursue better deception education and training within the U.S. military and also offers suggestions regarding better interoperability between SOF and the conventional military for improved deception operations.

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Great Powers, Weak States and Asymmetric Strategies

by Michael R. Lwin CPT, USA
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

On the verge of the twenty-first century, America finds itself in the position of a great power with dominant military technology. This thesis examines the possibility that weaker states may be able to strategically innovate and defeat us in war despite our technological advantages. The purpose of the thesis is to survey what type of strategic innovations, also known as asymmetric strategies, are possible and to examine the conditions under which they may be successful. This thesis begins by defining asymmetric strategies using a comprehensive model of strategy developed by Rear Admiral J.C. Wylie. The thesis also examines four variables which may explain the success or failure of asymmetric strategies. To illustrate possible asymmetric strategies and examine the contextual conditions under which they work, the thesis considers the cases of the Italo-Ethiopian war of 1935-36, the Russo-Finnish War of 1939-40, and the American-North Vietnamese War of 1965-73. The thesis finds that the four variables have significant explanatory power for the success or failure of these strategies. The thesis concludes by examining strategic implications for the United States, both as a possible opponent of weak states and as a supporter of a weak state faced by a great power threat.

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The Restructuring of the United States Army Civil Affairst

by Darrell W. Martin COL, USA
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, KS

The Civil Affairs (CA) structure the Army now knows should cease to exist. From this current structure, the best and brightest CA noncommissioned officers (NCOs) and officers should be extracted to fill the slots in the newly recommended structure. In the recommendation, there will be no reserve component (RC) CA units. CA NCOs and officers will be on the S, G, C, or J5 staffs. There will only be RC individual military augmentees (IMAs). Every maneuver company level unit in the Army will send two NCOs per platoon to a two, three or four week CA course in order to train combat arms maneuver soldiers to perform basic assessments. The first sergeant will also attend this course. The first sergeant will consolidate and verify these assessments and forward them to the CA officer at battalion. For these NCOs, this CA designator creates a future possibility should he ever wish to become a CA NCO on a battalion, brigade, division, corps, or theater staff. All of the CA positions at battalion and above are active component (AC), and permanently assigned to the maneuver units, with the exception of the CA specialists. CA specialists will be temporarily tasked to the maneuver units to perform a specific function. They may be RC or AC.

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Far More Intellectual than a Bayonet Charge: The Need for Joint Unconventional Warfare Doctrine

by David P. Matarazzo LTC, USA
School of Advanced Military Studies
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, KS

This monograph investigates whether the U.S. military should establish joint doctrine for unconventional warfare. Since the passage of the Goldwater-Nichols Department of Defense Reorganization Act of 1986, joint doctrine has become central to everything the U.S. military does. Training, education, programs, procurement, and war planning are all guided by joint doctrine. Since the U.S. has recently conducted unconventional warfare against the Taliban in Afghanistan, it is clear that unconventional warfare is relevant to the U.S. military. Because unconventional warfare is a relevant mission, and joint doctrine is central to military operations, it is therefore relevant and timely to ask if the U.S. military needs joint doctrine for unconventional warfare. The monograph first establishes criteria for determining whether joint doctrine is appropriate for a task. The five criteria are below. Does UW involve the employment of joint forces? Does UW fit the demands of law, policy, or joint capstone or keystone doctrine? Is UW normally conducted as a multinational or interagency effort? Does the lack of joint doctrine for UW hamper joint training and education on UW? Will a lack of joint doctrine for UW lead to other operational or organizational problems? Next, the monograph examines existing joint and Service doctrine for unconventional warfare to determine if it is sufficient. Since the doctrine is not found to be sufficient, the criteria are then applied to determine that joint doctrine is appropriate for unconventional warfare. Once it has been established that joint doctrine is necessary and appropriate, components of the doctrine are recommended. The monograph compares the uses of joint doctrine and joint tactics, techniques, and procedures to the recommended doctrinal components to determine which one is more appropriate. Based upon these findings, the monograph concludes that the U.S. military should publish a new joint tactics, techniques, and procedures manual for unconventional warfare. It also recommends changes to existing joint doctrinal manuals. Further, it recommends that the U.S. Special Operations Command should be the lead agent for the new doctrine. The monograph also recommends that because it is broader, the work of Bard O’Neill, rather than Mao Tse-tung, be used as the theoretical basis of U.S. military insurgency and unconventional warfare doctrine.

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Political Terrorism in Southeast Asia and US Polity Issues : Case Studies of Thailand and Indonesia

by George R. McDonald II CPT, USA
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

The end of the Cold War has brought about a decrease in global tensions while regional disorder has increased. In particular, Southeast Asia has become an area of regional economic and political instability. As a result, the possibility of an increase in terrorism, separatist violence, ethnic disputes, and strained regional relations takes on greater significance, both for United States foreign policy and regional Southeast Asian relations. The main purpose of this thesis is to examine political terrorism in Southeast Asia, with particular attention paid to terrorism conducted by separatist groups in Thailand and Indonesia. Secondly, this paper will discuss what actions are needed to contain political terrorism in the region. Additionally, this paper will examine US Government anti-terrorist/counter-terrorist policy and how it affects political terrorism in the region. Finally, this thesis will demonstrate that there is a growing threat of terrorism in Southeast Asia that can no longer be addressed unilaterally and that ASEAN can use US policy and global initiatives as guidelines for greater cooperation. It is therefore recommended that US policy towards terrorism need not change to accommodate Southeast Asia and that ASEAN and its individual states take greater steps toward containing the spread of terrorism in the region.

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SOF and Conventional Force Interoperability Through SOF Reconfiguration

by Edward J. McHale MAJ, USA
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

The goal of this thesis was to decide what environmental variables affected past SOF attempts at achieving interoperability with the conventional military, to examine the status of SOF and conventional forces interoperability as it exists today, and to explain why now is the time for SOF to engage in the reconfiguration of its forces to achieve an optimal level of interoperability.

Five variables were used in the examination of SOFs organizational evolution toward interoperability with conventional forces. The interplay of these variables showed that environment changes combined with the sponsorship of civilian leadership had a dominant, yet, short-lived effect on SOF attempts at achieving interoperability with the conventional military, and that the incremental gains in structural and organizational aspects of SOF created conditions for achieving interoperability in the future. This window of opportunity is temporary, since SOF exists in an environment of competitive bureaucracies. Recommendations for SOF leaders in their pursuit of interoperability with conventional forces are presented. An opinion on how SOF might reconfigure itself to engage interoperability is provided.

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SOF Regional Engagement: An Analysis of the Effectiveness of Current Attempts to Shape Future Battlefields

by Ross H. Meyer MAJ, USA
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

The purpose of this thesis is to answer the question of how effective are current theater engagement / security cooperation plans at supporting US national interests. The examination of effectiveness focused on two theaters as case studies during the years 1998 through September 2001. This examination divided effectiveness down into two parts. The first part was consistency. Consistency was investigated by a comparison of the national priorities to completed engagement activities. The second part of effectiveness attempted to measure gains produced through the executed engagement missions.

Following the case study analysis, key principles for effectiveness are identified and a modified engagement planning process proposed. The key elements of the modified process are integrated interagency planning, objective based engagement activities, and synchronization of all the elements of statecraft. This framework is tested by applying the modified TEP process to a sub-region of Africa. The significance for this test is not only to demonstrate the capability of the proposed TEP process. This test demonstrates the potential for effective engagement to assist in prosecuting the Global War on Terrorism (GWOT).

In conclusion, this thesis provides an understanding of what engagement is today, and what engagement should be in the future.

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Determining the Correct Insurgent Strategy for the Iraqi Opposition

by Miller Christopher C. COL, USA
Naval War College, Newport, RI

USCENTCOM is unprepared to support the U.S. policy toward Iraq of assisting Iraqi opposition groups that are trying to overthrow Saddam Hussein. This is because US-CINCCENT has not correctly identified the nature of the war he is supporting. Currently, USCENTCOM is providing assistance to support a Lenin model insurgency. The alternative proposal is a Cuban model, "foco" insurgent strategy. Both of these strategies are wrong because they don't take into consideration the principal elements that determine the nature of the war. An identification of the principal elements clearly shows that the correct strategy the U.S. should support is a Maoist model, mass-oriented insurgency.

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From Son Tay to Desert One: Lessons Unlearned

by Mis James M. COL, USA
Naval War College, Newport, RI

In the planning, preparation and execution of special operations, lessons learned from previous missions are sometimes overlooked or discounted. This was true of the Iranian rescue mission undertaken in April 1980, which failed, in part, by not studying and following the lessons learned from the Son Tay Raid ten years before. By examining these missions through the principles of objective, unity of command, unity of effort, and security, the contrasts between these complex special operations are clearly illustrated. Like all military operations, special operations require a clear objective coupled with political commitment, a unified effort directed toward the attainment of these objectives, a well-defined chain of command, and security, both operational security and force protection. While failing to rescue any American prisoners, the Son Tay Raid was nearly flawless in its execution and validated the need to insure that these principles are observed. However, from the beginning of planning, the Iranian rescue mission failed to recognize the need to abide by these principles and would end in disaster. In its failure, the Iranian rescue mission has served as a catalyst for major improvements among today's special operations forces (SOF),.but serious oversights continue to be committed, especially with regard to unity of effort and objective. With the emergence of military operations other than war (MOOTW) as a predominant focus of today's military, SOF must be prepared to conduct complex special operations. By learning from past successes and failures, SOF can insure that the principles of war and MOOTW are not neglected.

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Strategic Leverage : Information Operations and Special Operations Forces

by Mark E. Mitchell MAJ, USA
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

Special Operations Forces (SOF) have assumed a unique and expanded role as a strategic asset of the United States. The conjunction of changing political and security environments and new technologies present both challenges and opportunities for SOF. Special Operations Forces provide the National Command Authority (NCA) a variety of unique capabilities and expanded options for achieving strategic goals at minimum costs. The recent drawdown has placed even more value on the capabilities and leverage provided by SOF. Additionally the rapid pace of technological change- the "information revolution"- has opened the door to a potential "Revolution in Military Affairs" (RMA). New approaches to warfare, like Information Operations (10), are beginning to emerge from the RMA.

Information operations, like SOF, can also provide a means to leverage limited resources. At the strategic level, SOF can provide support for 16; at the tactical level, 10 can support of special operations (SO). Each has distinct implications for SOF. In either case, the object of the supporting operation is to generate or expand a window of opportunity for the supported operation. Separately, both SO and 10 can provide economy of force. Properly employed, this leverage is multiplied and offers a tremendous strategic asset.

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U.S. Army Special Forces Training for the Global War on Terror

by Daniel C. Moll LTC, USA
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, KS

With USSOCOM assuming the role as supported command in the Global War on Terror, Army Special Forces will no doubt to play a primary role in that effort. The unspoken assumption seems to be that America’s new, unconventional foe will best be combated with America’s own unconventional warriors. It is unclear, however, if a force raised to conduct behind-the-lines operations against a large conventional enemy will remain the force of choice against al-Qaida and similar threats. This thesis’ central research question is: Is US Army Special Forces adequately prepared, and trained to fight the Global War on Terror? This thesis examines the contemporary operating environment, the threat represented by al-Qaida, and whether it represents a traditional terrorist threat or a new, transnational insurgency. A review of both types of organization over the last century indicates that al-Qaida is, at this stage, merely a terrorist organization, and not an insurgency. However, al-Qaida sprang from a region that is ripe for insurgency should the terrorists choose to become more than what they currently are. Combating the threat posed by al-Qaida, then, seems to require both an aggressive counterterrorist campaign and a simultaneous pre-emptive counter-insurgency. A review of current training indicates that Special Forces appears well prepared for both efforts with one glaring deficiency: foreign language proficiency.

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The Role of Army Special Operations Forces in Nation Building

by Jeffrey J. Monte LTC, USA
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, KS

Although the United States (US) has been involved in nation-building efforts for the past 100 years it does not have a doctrinal definition to articulate what nation building is. Another challenge for the US is the lack of a designated agency within the US Government (USG) to lead the effort. First, an interagency, agreed upon, doctrinal definition of nation building must be established. Following this, each department and agency within the USG must be examined to identify the role each plays within a nation-building operation. This examination will allow the identification of the relationships between departments of the USG and the resources available to conduct nation building. This thesis examines the role of Army Special Operation Forces (ARSOF) in nation building. In order to do so, a definition of nation building is established, key tasks of nation building are derived, and military tasks that support a nation building operation are developed. These military tasks are analyzed against the doctrinal missions and capabilities of ARSOF in order to identify how ARSOF can contribute to nation building. This thesis concludes with recommendations on the employment of ARSOF in nation-building operations.

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Special Forces: The Peacetime Regional Engagement Force of Choice...and More

by Mulholland Sean P. BG, USA
Naval War College, Newport, RI

Regional engagement is a strategy that has no back door. Once a nation commits to that strategy and begins to energize it, there is no easy way out. Regional engagement has three levels of engagement: engagement in peacetime, engagement in conflict and engagement in war. Combatant Commanders utilize these different levels of regional engagement to foster development in their Area of Responsibility (AOR). As long as the United States demonstrates global leadership and promotes global cooperation, the U.S. military will be committed to this strategy for a long period of time. In regional engagement, U.S. Army Special Forces are the common denominator. Special Forces enter the engagement process on the ground floor during the peacetime engagement process and stay in theater throughout the continuum of conflict. The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate the "uniqueness' of Special Forces in terms of application in CINCs engagement strategies. The second purpose is to familiarize other branches of the Army and other services on the versatility and applicability of Special Forces. Commanders need to understand the capabilities of Special Forces in order to increase their chances for success in an uncertain future.

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The Law Enforcement Approach to Combating Terrorism : An Analysis of US Policy

by William C. Nagel CPT, USA
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

This thesis examines the US policy for combating terrorism from 1988 to 2000 using five case studies; the bombing of Pan Am flight 103, the bombing of the World Trade Center in 1993, the bombing of the US barracks in Saudi Arabia in 1996, the bombings of two US embassies in Africa in 1998 and the bombing of the USS Cole in 2000. The thesis begins by outlining the minimum requirements for a counter-terrorism policy. They are; that a policy must either deter terrorists from attacking the US or, failing that, successfully defend against terrorists who cannot be deterred. Next, the thesis examines the history and development of the law enforcement approach to combating terrorism and a few of the events that set the conditions for its ascendance to the forefront of US policy. After establishing the conditions for its dominance, the thesis takes an in-depth to look at the US response in the aftermath of each of the five terrorist attacks. The final chapter compares the demonstrated performance of the policy in the aftermath of the five bombings with the basic requirements for a counter-terrorist policy to determine the effectiveness of the policy as a whole.

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Employing U.S. SOF in Colombia: Updating Strategy to Achieve The Desired End State

by Richard R. Navarro Jr COL, USA
Naval War College, Newport, RI

Through the end of 2002, security assistance to the Government of Colombia has been limited to Counterdrug-type training. NSPD/PDD-18 has made provisions to permit the use of available CD funds for supporting operations directed against U.S.-recognized terrorist organizations that have credible links to the illegal drug trade. This paper proposes taking this authority to operationally employ U.S. SOF deployed to Colombia in a balanced strategy of Counter-Drug and Counter-Insurgency operations that include the provision of allowing SOF to participate in an advisory role during combat operations.

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Joint Conflict Observer Teams: An Old Concept Redefined

by John W. Nutt COL, USA
Naval War College, Newport, RI

This paper examines the relevance of redefining an old concept that at one time was common practice in the U.S. Military. Joint Conflict Observer teams are one such concept. They can provide the regional combatant commander and staff with specific information regarding allies, neutrals and belligerents within their theater of operations. These hand-picked teams, organized for a specific task, would provide valuable information and impart lessons learned from observing other countries involved in regional conflicts or as part of the Global War on Terror. This paper examines historical examples that highlight the relevance and importance of modern day observer teams regionally oriented to the commander. Next is an analysis of how these teams could fill the information gap between different military services that conduct operations with foreign militaries, in order to maintain the initiative in the GWOT. Then, the paper identifies the bureaucratic and legal hurdles that will challenge the employment of conflict observer teams in the future. And finally, it offers solutions and suggestions on how to select, train and task organized teams to observe training and conflicts around the globe. This redefined concept will provide the commander and his staff another valuable resource to maintain the initiative in the fight against terrorists, rogue nations and future adversaries. This concept is by no means complete and is intended as a starting point for further research and application.

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Unconventional Warfare in the Contemporary Operational Environment: Transforming Special Forces

by Paul A. Ott MAJ, USA
School of Advanced Military Studies
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Ft. Leavenworth, KS

The emphasis on special operations and specifically unconventional warfare (UW) has grown significantly since the end of the Gulf War. The contemporary operational environment (COE) in which the U.S. military operates today is dictating this emphasis. The COE is the complex global environment that exists today. It encompasses the effects of globalism, changes in the global power structure, the proliferation of technology and weapons of mass destruction, and the entire spectrum of threats that exist—from traditional nation-state actors to emerging non-state actors. The core purpose of Army Special Forces (SF) has been, and will continue to be UW. The ability to operate in this dynamic, ambiguous environment through, with, and by indigenous and surrogate forces often makes SF an ideal economy of force for operations in the COE.

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U.S. Support for Plan Colombia: An Alternative Approach

by Wade A. Owens COL, USA
Naval War College, Newport, RI

The U.S. $1.3 billion support package for Plan Colombia is a positive sign of our commitment to stabilizing Colombia's faltering democracy and reducing the flow of illegal drugs into our nation. However, to have a reasonable chance of success, the support plan needs significant modification. Drug interdiction efforts in Colombia, must first be preceded by the government regaining control of its sovereign territory and strengthening its civil institutions. U.S. policy makers should recognize that the Colombian Revolutionary Armed Forces (FARC), the Army of National Liberation (ELN), and right-wing paramilitary groups present the greatest obstacle to achieving democracy and stability in Colombia. Successfully negotiating with or combating these organizations will require a more professional, capable Colombian military. U.S. support efforts should focus on assisting Colombia with developing this force. The U.S. should use the successful operations in El Salvador in the 1980's as a model for assisting Colombia. Assigning training teams to selected Colombian military and CNP units to facilitate training programs, assist in planning operations, and monitor respect for human rights would gready improve the effectiveness of U.S. support. Finally, the U.S. should develop and implement a more coherent interagency and combined regional strategy for coping with drug trafficking. Adoption of these measures would greafly improve the probability of achieving U.S. counter-drug policy objectives.

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Chechen Use of the Internet in the Russo-Chechen Conflict

by Brian S. Petit MAJ, USA
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Ft. Leavenworth, KS

The emergence of the Internet as a global information network has impacted the conduct of information operations. In their quest for independence from Russia, Chechens have made wide use of the Internet to influence the battlefield. This thesis examines how three Chechen-sponsored websites attempt to influence the Russo-Chechen conflict. The study methodology employed an instrument to describe the design, content, and behavior of the websites. Two websites were analyzed according to this methodology. The third website, by virtue of its unavailability for study, required a different analytical approach that yielded unique data. The thesis concludes that Chechen subgroups use the Internet differently to broadcast actions, mobilize, fund raise, communicate, and unite. The Internet, with its anonymity and ubiquity, offers advantages to small, endangered groups seeking a communications and information management network.

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The Organization of the United States Army Special Forces in the Objective Force

by John S. Prairie COL, USA
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, KS

The current task organization of Army Special Forces was developed fifty years ago to execute missions in a very specific operational environment against a threat that was simple to template. In the twenty-first century this organization is no longer suitable. The Army recognizes this and has initiated a program to transform all of its forces into an Objective Force with specific capabilities to successfully operate in the future operational environment in order to accomplish full spectrum dominance. This thesis examines research material revolving around the Army’s Transformation Plan for the Objective Force and breaks the analysis into a four step process. The first step is to review the contemporary operational environment and the characteristics of the future threat. The second step is to identify those operations and mission areas of the Objective Force. The third step is to define unconventional operations and the required capabilities that Special Forces will need to embody in order to be successful at every point across the spectrum of operations. The paper concludes by proposing a realistic Special Forces task organization for Units of Employment and Units of Action that embody the requirements stated in the Army’s vision for the Objective Force.

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Combating Terrorism with Preparation of the Battlespace

by Repass Michael S. MG, USA
U.S. Army War College, Carlisle, Pennsylvania

Preparation of the battlespace is military concept that directly contributes to successful contingency operations. An integrated approach to the full range of military activities during peacetime and pre-crisis deployments is essential for mission success and can reduce the risks to U.S. forces during contingencies. Its increasing importance is underscored by the 2002 National Security Strategy, which places clear emphasis on pre-emptive measures against threats to U.S. national security. This paper discusses the preparation of the battlespace concept, its utility to successful operations, and the challenges and risks associated with its execution. Its two major components are intelligence preparation of the battlespace (IPB), and operational preparation of the battlespace (OPB). OPB consists of the full range of peacetime and pre-crisis activities in a potential operational area to include: engagement and training activities, pre-crisis surveys and assessments, and advance force operations (AFO). There are several challenges to approving and implementing preparation of the battlespace operations to fight terrorism. First, a family of campaign plans is required to focus interagency and military efforts on fighting terrorism. Second, the PB concept needs to be understood and used. Finally, related core processes need to be developed and refined to effectively defeat terrorism.

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Urban Operations: Theory and Cases

by Gregory K. Anderson MAJ, USA; Ian C. Rice MAJ, USA
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

This thesis examines military performance in both urban and traditional non-urban environments. Cases used in this study are German operations on the Russian front, Israeli operations during the Yom Kippur War, and U.S. Marine operations in South Vietnam. This thesis establishes a framework for analysis consisting of six factors. These include environment, time, informational aspects of military operations, application of existing technology, intangible human factors, and the decision making of both political and military leaders. Analysis of the three cases points to a number of common trends including, shortcomings when units enter in the urban environment. We note a lack of urban operations training, an increase in time to accomplish tasks, a resistance to operate at night, difficulty processing and communicating information, and micromanagement of city fighting by political and military leaders who typically refrain from such management during non-urban combat. Results of this study suggest a need to incorporate consideration of our six factors into current doctrine.

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An Operational Concept for the Transformation of SOF into a Fifth Service

by Philip L. Mahla MAJ, USA; Christopher N. Riga MAJ, USA
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

This thesis defines the strategic utility of Special Operation Forces (SOF), identifies why SOF only provide limited strategic utility, and presents an operational concept for the reorganization, alignment, and employment of SOF to overcome these shortf alls.

The thesis is presented in a deductive manner that argues that SOF were designed for strategic purposes, and leads the reader to conclude that reformation must occur for SOF to provide strategic utility and meet their intent. SOF would be in an optimal position to meet their organizational intent by becoming a fifth armed service within the Department of Defense (DoD). Through the creation of mission-based units and a holistic employment strategy, SOF would become a strategic instrument capability of assisting national decision -makers in blending the elements of national power.

Finally, the thesis concludes with additional required areas for research to make this concept become a reality, but that are beyond the scope of this study.

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Understanding Ethnic Conflict: A Framework

by Patrick B. Roberson MAJ, USA
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

Within the last ten years the phrase ethnic conflict has become extremely common. I spent the majority of my time as a Special Forces Detachment Commander dealing with ethnic conflict situations in Northern Iraq, Turkey, and the Balkans. While in these places it became apparent to me that ethnic conflict is very complicated and that most Americans have a difficult time comprehending it. My purpose in writing this thesis is to offer Special Forces soldiers or other US military personnel a framework for gaining a better understanding of the dynamics involved in ethnic conflict. This framework includes three preconditions and two advanced conditions which are tested against three case studies: Bosnia, Kosovo, and Kurdish/Turkish relations in Southeast Turkey. The framework offers an objective, non country-specific, way to sort through and make sense of the situation on the ground. After becoming familiar with this framework, it would be my hope that the individual will have the ability to function more effectively and efficiently, particularly when there is little time to become intimately familiar with the situation before arriving on the scene.

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Korean Unification : A United States Army Special Forces Framework for Employment

by Paul D. Rounsaville CPT, USA
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

As Korea approaches unification, the growing stability problems in the north create questions about how these problems can be approached to avoid destabilizing the peninsula upon unification. This thesis predicts and analyzes the significant stability and support operations likely to confront the Republic of Korea (ROK) Army during post-conflict or post-unification proceedings, and presents an employment framework for United States Army Special Forces (USASF) designed to support the ROK Army's efforts. The employment framework is designed to complement a theater-level strategic plan for conducting stability and support operations (SASO) in the north occurring along a suggested spectrum of unification possibilities. The framework consists of three elements: the SASO missions predicted, framework doctrinal elements, and four Korean unification scenarios. Doctrinal elements include the operations, missions, and unique roles USASF conduct during SASO. The utility of this thesis is the analysis of framework doctrinal elements in relation to the SASO missions and unification environment that may confront USASF while supporting the ROK Army in successful completion of these missions. The USASF employment framework is intended to be used as an aid for U.S. military planners at the strategic, operational and tactical levels during the deliberate planning process for post-conflict or post-unification operations in the north.

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Serving a Nation at War: A Campaign Quality Army with Joint and Expeditionary Capabilities

by Schoomaker Peter J. GEN, Chief of Staff, US ARMY; Brownlee, Les Acting Secretary of the Army
U.S. Army War College, Carlisle, PA

President Bush told us that this war will be unlike any other in our Nation's history. He was right. After our initial expeditionary responses and successful major combat operations in Afghanistan and Iraq, those operations have become protracted campaigns where we are providing the conditions of security needed to wage a conflict a war of ideas. This is not simply a fight against terror - terror is a tactic. This is not simply a fight against al Qaeda, its affiliates and adherents - they are foot soldiers. This is not simply a fight to bring democracy to the Middle East - that is a strategic objective. This is a fight for the very ideas at the foundation of our society, the way of life those ideas enable, and the freedoms we enjoy. The single most significant component of our new strategic reality is that because of the centrality of the ideas in conflict, this war will be a protracted one. Whereas for most of our lives the default condition has been peace, now our default expectation must be conflict. This new strategic context is the logic for reshaping the Army to be an Army of campaign quality with joint and expeditionary capabilities. The lessons learned in two and a half years of war have already propelled a wide series of changes in the Army and across the Joint team. This learning process must not stop. Although this article outlines the strategic context for the series of changes under way in our Army, its purpose is not to convince you or even to inform you. Its purpose is to cause you to reflect on and think about this new strategic context and what it portends for our future and for the Nation. All great changes in our Army have been accompanied by earnest dialogue and active debate at all levels - both within the Army and with those who care about the Army. As this article states, The best way to anticipate the future is to create it. Your thoughtful participation in this dialogue is key to creating that future.

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Far More Intellectual than a Bayonet Charge: The Need for Joint Unconventional Warfare Doctrine

by Duke C. Shienle LTC, USA
School of Advanced Military Studies
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, KS

This monograph examines the potential roles of indigenous forces in the transition period from decisive combat through post conflict reconstruction. More specifically, should Unconventional Warfare doctrine assess, train and develop suitable resistance forces for a post conflict security role. Minimizing US ground presence in future conflicts asks the question, what missions are indigenous resistance forces suitable for? Within the Contemporary Operating Environment, resistance forces can bring unique skills, abilities and legitimacy to post conflict operations. In this current era of US military supremacy, asymmetric opponents will focus on post conflict to defeat US goals. The monograph will be evaluated in terms of three security related criteria: protection of populace, protection of key individuals, institutions, and infrastructure, and reform of local security institutions. A review of the Contemporary Operating Environment and its impact on Unconventional Warfare Doctrine establishes a baseline for developing criteria, assessing an Operation Provide Comfort case study and delineating potential critical tasks and events. Unconventional Warfare doctrine focuses on Guerilla Warfare followed by demobilization of the resistance force. Changes in modern warfare suggest a larger role for indigenous forces across the range of military operations. The case study explores how Special Forces trained Kurdish resistance forces in stability operations using the collateral activity of Humanitarian Assistance. Operation Provide Comfort both strengthened the legitimacy of the Kurdish forces and facilitated combined combat operations during Operation Iraqi Freedom. Advising resistance leadership also provides a venue to assess the resistance group’s suitability for security operations, shape the leader’s strategic goals and build long-term bonds. Special Forces maintain the ability to train both combat and stability operations based on their expertise in and the commonality of Unconventional Warfare and Foreign Internal Defense core tasks. The monograph concludes that irregular forces are a critical component to post conflict success. To facilitate this contribution, UW doctrine should train suitable resistance forces for an interim security role in post conflict. The study also suggests the need for overarching doctrine to incorporate irregular forces, operating in a guerilla, proxy or surrogate role, into US military operations. Training, advising and leading indigenous forces across the spectrum of conflict have the potential to create unique strategic and operational effects. Indigenous focused activities can be the most potent (and only unique) combat multiplier Special Forces brings to the modern battlefield.

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Unconventional Warfare and Operational Art: Can We Achieve Continuity in Command and Control?

by John W.Silkman COL, USA
School of Advanced Military Studies
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, KS

This monograph will focus on the gap in operational command and control for unconventional warfare operations, and the organizational elements required to mitigate this gap. The United States has conducted unconventional warfare many times in our history – from the Revolutionary War to the present. In the 20th Century and beyond, the United States conducted unconventional warfare in the Second World War, Korea, Vietnam, and the War on Terror. After each war, the United States’ command and control structure for planning, organizing, and leading unconventional warfare was dismantled, and valuable experience and continuity were lost. Subsequently, at the outset of each conflict, Special Operations Forces have been forced to build an operational command and control mechanism tailored to the requirements of each UW situation. We continue to waste crucial time and resources relearning the lessons of our unconventional warfare past. With expanding roles and responsibilities for Special Operations Forces in the War on Terror, unconventional warfare is fast becoming a dominant form of warfare. To design and execute an effective unconventional warfare campaign, Special Operations Forces need coherent and flexible organizations to integrate the different joint special operations and conventional forces with other government agencies, in a coordinated effort against terrorism. A joint command and control organizational model for unconventional warfare at the operational level will provide an appropriate means to bridge this gap. This monograph concludes that in order to plan, organize, and lead UW operations, the U.S. must establish a focal point within the geographical combatant commands that would leverage all joint and interagency capabilities and resources required to plan, organize, and lead UW operations. Each of the geographic theaters would have a JIATF-UW to command and control all unconventional warfare actions. Creating regional JIATF-UWs will leverage the capabilities of the nation’s military manpower and resources to wage successful unconventional warfare, and offers a solution to the continuity gap in SOF’s ability to command and control joint unconventional warfare at the operational level of war.

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ARSOF: A Fix for Conventional Force Readiness in Today's International Peace Operations Environment

by Kurt L. Sonntag COL, USA
Naval War College, Newport, RI

The United States Army has seen a dramatic increase in deployments over the last ten years. As result, the ability to maintain a readiness level capable of addressing the two major theater of war strategy has steadily eroded. Now, as the international community commits its military forces to assist in establishing and maintaining peace in the world's trouble spots, the Army must be given the opportunity to address its readiness issues. Because the warfighting Commander in Chiefs must maintain a peacetime engagement strategy in their Areas of Responsibility they need to utilize a force with a capability to achieve the desired results in peace operations. The force best suited to fulfill the role in a combined peacekeeping environment is Army Special Operations. Particularly well suited to meet these requirements are the Special Forces, Psychological Operations, and Civil Affairs units that maintain the necessary skill-sets to be successful in this type of environment.

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US Special Operations Forces: A Strategic Perspective

by Stiner Carl W. GEN, USA
USAWC Parameters - U.S. Army War College, Carlisle, Pennsylvania

The post-Cold War international environment presents the United States with security challenges that are unprecedented in ambiguity, diversity, risk, and--opportunity. For the first time since the 1930s, no single power confronts the United States as a clear and present military danger. However, the failure of communism and the end of the Cold War do not eliminate threats to US interests, negate US responsibilities to friends and allies, nor void the necessity for potent US military forces. In recent years, we have witnessed momentous events--dramatic progress in strategic arms control negotiations, the end of the Cold War, a stunning military victory in the Middle East by a coalition led by the United States, the withdrawal of Soviet forces from Eastern Europe, the collapse of the Warsaw Pact, and the demise of the Soviet Union as we have known it for the past 40 years. But in the midst of all this change, there remain certain constants which force us to temper hope with realism. Improved relations with the countries of Eastern Europe and the republics of the former Soviet Union, and the accompanying reduced risk of global nuclear warfare, should not obscure the realities of a world that will continue to grow more uncertain. The only thing definite is that the United States no longer faces a large monolithic national force intent on defeating it. International turmoil and aggression, however, remain with us.

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Joint Task Force XXI : SOF as Executive Agency in Military Operations Other Than War

by Mark A. Strong CPT, USA
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

While the US military faces growing requirements to conduct Military Operations Other Than War (MOOTW), our command relationships are mired in the past, optimized for war, not MOOTW. General Purpose Forces are normally earmarked for Command and Control (C2) of these operations, with primarily conventional commanders, staffs, and service components establishing the Joint Task Force (JTF). Special Operations Forces (SOF) support the JTF. However, given the capabilities of SOF, this command relationship does not take advantage of SOF's strengths, and at times actually impedes our overall efforts. SOF can provide the regional CINC with superior multi-echelon C2 in MOOTW. This thesis will demonstrate that the current US military C2 system is unsuitable, and that by changing it we will dramatically improve mission success probabilities, efficiency, and overall combat effectiveness. This thesis examines US operations in Somalia (Restore Hope) in order to shed light on key areas of sub-optimization. A SOF-based organization (JTF-XXI) will be proposed and compared to the Restore Hope JTF. The thesis will argue that the JTF-XXI is more effective and efficient, and should be adopted for future use.

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Role of Special Forces Liaison Elements in Future Multinational Operations

by Bruce R. Swatek COL, USA
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, KS

This thesis examines how might Special Forces liaison elements (SFLEs) improve interoperability between US forces, allies, and coalition partners from now until 2020. Given the history and current nature of US national security interests and defense strategy, it appears that the military will continue to conduct future operations within a multinational framework. It is also likely that in future operations, US commanders will continue to share the responsibility of leading such diverse organizations and face situations involving an equal or greater number of variables than those experienced during the Gulf War and subsequent combined operations. Thus, US commanders will require a conduit, such as SFLEs, also referred to as coalition support teams (CSTs) or liaison coordination elements (LCEs), to achieve the full synergistic effects of unified combat power. The study concludes that to ensure SFLEs remain capable and flexible to the emerging needs of US forces as well as multinational partners, SFLEs must as a minimum have compatible communication systems with US forces, enhanced regional expertise that includes vast knowledge of traditional as well as arcane languages and cultures, and an improved understanding of Joint and Army procedures and equipment at the operational levels.

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Do Centralization and Consolidation of Staff Functions Improve Army Special Operations Forces' Decision Making?

by Sean P. Swindell MAJ, USA
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Ft. Leavenworth, KS

This thesis examines insights gained over two AWES, two Prairie Warrior exercises, and one JTFEX into a checklist of guidelines to organize ARSOF digitized TOCs as the Army continues its road to a fully operational Army Battle Command System (ABCS). The goal of this research has been to develop the optimum ARSOF digitized TOC. This study determined that with increasing levels of digitization and speed of information, guidelines must be observed in the layout of the TOC to filter information for the commander and establish standardization of critical functions. The physical layout of the TOC contributes to how efficiently messages and information are passed from one staff section to another and how easily section and battle staff personnel communicate with one another.
Information technologies and the RCP obviate need for separate and elaborate staff facilities. Data was gathered fiom observations during two Force XXI AWES, two Prairie Warrior Exercises, and one JTFEX and produced insights and the final conclusions based on these observations. Consolidation of battle staff personnel and combat hctions facilitates horizontal and vertical synchronization and coordination of the staff increasing the probability that the whole of the digital TOC will be greater than the sum of its members.

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Special Forces and The Art of Influence: A Grassroots Approach to Psychological Operations in an Unconventional Warfare Environment

by Joel W. Thomas II MAJ, USA
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

This thesis researches the elements of the art of influence in an unconventional warfare environment to develop a model of influence that can be utilized by Special Forces conducting unconventional warfare. The research was based on several premises: (1) the strategic utility of Special Forces (SF) lies in its ability to influence a target audience in an unconventional warfare (UW) environment; (2) the nature of UW necessitates a bottom up and nonkinetic approach to influence in order to have lasting effective results.

Chapter II focuses on the elements of influence derived from the academic literature and from commercial and political applications of cognitive and social psychology. Chapter III examines key elements of influence derived from the Huk Rebellion in the Philippines and the Malayan Emergency. Chapter IV reviews several relevant models and uses them, along with the analysis of the key elements of influence identified in prior chapters, to develop a new grassroots influence model

The results of the research are eight principles of grassroots psychological operations. The GRP model is intended to work in conjunction with or in support of other models that encompass the entire spectrum of activities in an UW conflict.

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Special Forces' Mission Focus for the Future

by Tovo Kenneth E. LTG, USA
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, KS

This monograph examines the doctrinal mission focus of U.S. Army Special Forces to determine if it is appropriate to prepare the force to meet the requirements of the post-Cold War environment. The study suggests that current doctrine, largely written to meet Cold War requirements, is too broad and all-encompassing. With operations tempo for Special Forces units at an all time high, a narrower mission focus would allow Special Forces detachments to use their limited training time to concentrate on its indirect mission skills, which will be in great demand in the post-Cold War environment. The monograph begins by defining two categories of Special Forces' missions. Indirect missions rely on linguistic, interpersonal, and cross cultural communications skills, regional orientation, and training skills to influence indigenous forces. Examples include unconventional warfare, foreign internal defense, and special reconnaissance and direct action when conducted with or through indigenous personnel. Direct missions rely on the application of firepower, technology, and technical skills in a precise and rapid manner to achieve results. Unilateral direct action and special reconnaissance when performed as unilateral battlefield surveillance and reconnaissance are examples of direct missions. The study traces Special Forces' doctrine from inception to the present to establish that SF was originally focused on purely indirect missions, and examine the reasons for the inclusion of direct missions. The study then examines two post-Cold War operations, the Gulf War and the intervention in Haiti, to determine which missions, direct or indirect, best met two criteria, suitability and significance, that were derived from Joint Special Operations doctrine. It then proceeds to examine the probable nature of future conflict and Special Forces' role in it.

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Characteristics of Successful Operational Maneuver

by Votel Joseph L. GEN, USA
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, KS

This thesis explores the topic of operational maneuver by addressing the following research question: What are the characteristics of successful operational maneuver? The thesis uses a combination of descriptive research and case studies to answer the question. First, it uses descriptive research to analyze current AirLand Battle doctrine to identify potential characteristics of successful operational maneuver. The analysis of doctrine reveals two characteristics, mass and offensive action, for further examination. Second, the thesis uses case study analysis to examine mass and offensive action in four case studies. The thesis concludes that mass and offensive action are the primary characteristics of operational maneuver. Their development in operational art depends, however, on the existence of corollary concepts that assist in overall development of the characteristic. The thesis identifies two generalizations that will influence future operational maneuver. They are political influence and leadership.

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Strategic Implications for Shared Constitutional War Powers in the 21st Century

by Votel Joseph L. GEN, USA
U.S. Army War College, Carlisle, PA

The purpose of this research project is to examine shared constitutional war powers between the executive and legislative branches of the U.S. Government and identify implications of this relationship on future military strategies and force employment. Several factors highlight the relevance of this topic for senior military officers. First, increasing U.S. military deployments, spanning the spectrum of conflict, are a source of frustration and concern for professional military officers as they affect long-term military readiness and question the basic philosophy and purpose for military forces. Second, since the end of the Cold War, U.S. Presidents have shown an increasing and unchallenged propensity to use military force, in combination with the other elements of national power, to achieve broad policy objectives. Third, emerging threats to U.S. interests are becoming more asymmetric, encompassing sophisticated technical and nationalistic threats that will likely require a wide variety of military force responses. A historical review of shared war powers and a look at the future environment reveal that the problem will not be alleviated soon. Accelerated and radical force transformation and continued engagement in the national security process are the two best tools for supporting political authorities charged with employing military force in the national interest.

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Training Chrysalis: Applications of Special Forces Training in the Development of the Objective Force

by William B. Welsh LTC, USA
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, KS

Leaders and soldiers of the Army’s future Objective Force will face an ambiguous and dynamic operational environment populated by a ruthless, adaptive enemy. Both the environment and the threat resemble those faced by Special Forces today. Like Special Forces today, the Objective Force will be an intent-centric force that relies upon the judgment and initiative of subordinate leaders and soldiers to formulate and execute values-based decisions on a nonlinear and noncontiguous battlefield. Thus, the central research question is: Does Special Forces training offer possible training solutions to the Objective Force as its training framework and methodology are developed? This examination focuses on three primary steps. The first is an examination and comparison of current Special Forces and future Objective Force operational environments and threats. The second step is an analysis of the performance requirements of the Objective Force, and the third step is the analysis of current Special Forces training. Finally, this examination applies the training solutions developed and validated by Special Forces to the requirements of the Objective Force. This thesis concludes that Special Forces training does offer a departure point for the development of the Objective Force training methodology.

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Modeling and Evaluating U.S. Army Special Operations Forces Combat Attrition Using Janus(A)

by Greg R. Wilson CPT, USA
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

This thesis examines the combat attrition of U.S. Army special operations forces (SOF). It develops a methodology for modeling SOF in Janus and calculating SOF attrition coefficients from high resolution combat model simulation results for use in Lanchester models of warfare. Selected missions involving SOF at the Joint Readiness Training Center (JRTC) are examined and likely force-on-force engagements between SOF and enemy forces are modeled in Janus. A statistical analysis of the simulation results is conducted and SOF attrition coefficients are calculated using the maximum-likelihood estimate of attrition coefficients technique. SOF casualty outcome trees are then developed for the scenarios modeled. Casualty outcome trees capture the overall results of the high resolution combat model and provide a framework for utilizing the attrition coefficients developed in this study. SOF casualty outcome trees could also be incorporated into aggregate combat models that resolve attrition using Lanchester models of warfare.

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The Evolution of US Army Peace Operations

by James J. Wolff CPT, USA
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

Peace operations have had difficulty in being accepted by the US Army, have not been institutionalized, and continue to challenge the Army as an institution. Insight from the sociological perspective known as social construction was used to examine doctrinal development and institutionalization. Social constructionism predicts that until a new mission is accepted by the individual and the group, it will continue to cause disequilibrium. The constant reconceptualization and changing terminology within peace operations reflected the inability of the Army to accept peace operations as a primary mission. The national security strategy of the US is the primary, the first step in the social construction of peace operations. When peace operations were considered to serve national interests, the Army began to develop appropriate doctrine for these missions. Army professional literature highlighted how the Army leadership conceptualized peace operations and the amount of attention that they believed should be dedicated to the mission. Doctrinal development was traced from post-World War II, demonstrating the inability of the Army to accept peace operations as a primary mission. Until a coherent doctrine for peace operations is developed, these missions will not be accepted and will continue to challenge the Army as an institution.

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A Comparative Evaluation of British and American Strategy in the Southern Campaign of 1780-1781

by Joel A. Woodward COL, USA
U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, KS

This thesis is an analysis and evaluation of the British and American campaign strategies in the Southern Campaign of the War for American Independence. After over four and one-half years of inconclusive fighting in America, the British government developed a plan to restore Royal control of the American South where large numbers of Loyalist Americans were expected to rally in support of the Crown. Control of the southern provinces would allow the British army to isolate the North where the rebellion was strongest. In May 1780, the American army of the South surrendered to a British army at Charlestowne, South Carolina. The Americans raised a new army in the South, but it too was decisively defeated at Camden, South Carolina, in August 1780. American prospects in the Southern Department appeared bleak until the arrival of Nathanael Greene in December 1780. Despite a scarcity of resources, Greene rebuilt the American southern army and fought an inspired campaign of compound warfare to counter the expanding British control of the Carolinas. Lord Cornwallis led the British army on a protracted pursuit of Greene’s forces across North Carolina following the American victory at Cowpens in January 1781. The British army, operating well beyond its supply lines, was exhausted by the pursuit of Greene. Despite winning a narrow tactical victory at Guilford Courthouse in March of 1781, the British force was rendered operationally ineffective. Cornwallis withdrew to Virginia where he would ultimately be trapped at Yorktown. This thesis demonstrates the application of operational design using the British and American strategies in the Southern Campaign as a historical case study. The methodology for this study is based on the linkages between ends, ways, and means through the elements of operational design. Nathanael Greene ultimately succeeded because he implemented a strategy that was designed to match his means to his ends.

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The Gunfighter's Dilemma: Multiple Adversary Deterrence and Coercion

by Jess Palmer MAJ, USAF; Mark Stebbins CPT, USA; Andrew Zacherl CPT, USA
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

Throughout history great powers have had to wr~stle with the problem of maintaining their influence over the world around them. Often these powers were simultaneously faced with more than one opponent. In order to meet multiple challenges, leading nations have had to maximize the number of potential adversaries they could influence with each action or policy.

Those faced with this dilemma have included the Romans, Byzantines, and the British Empire. Studying these nations in their struggle to maintain control revealed tactics and techniques that proved effective. Forward deployment, statements of perseverance, the use of coalitions, strategic distraction of opponents, and the demonstration of their relative superiority over adversaries all helped to preserve the longevity of these empires. Additionally, an effective information campaign, which amplified successes, proved invaluable to these world powers.

This thesis explores how a single action often affects more than just the two parties taking and receiving action. It then discusses the flow of how the information content of foreign policy actions transfers from the primary actor to multiple secondary actors. We then use historical cases of multi-adversary deterrence and coercion as models of how our hypotheses, coupled with a good information strategy, maximized the studied powers' effectiveness.

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