Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Rethinking the US Army

WASHINGTON -- Absorbing the lessons of a troubled war, U.S. military officials have begun an intense debate over proposals for a sweeping reorganization of the Army to address shortcomings that have plagued the force in Iraq and to abandon some war-fighting principles that have prevailed since the Cold War.

On one side of the widening debate are officers who want many Army units to become specialized, so that entire units or even divisions are dedicated to training foreign militaries. On the other are those who believe that military units must remain generalists, able to do a wide range of skills well.

source: LA Times

I support a modified generalist approach.

The Army as a whole should be trained to support the entire range of missions but each division should be given a primary mission and operational area that receive more emphasis. That can filter to subordinate units.

Officers and NCOs should receive periodic briefings from area specialists from the CIA, State Department, NGOs etc. Reading lists on the history of the area should be developed and language skills encouraged. Special pays should be authorized for different levels of proficiency. This will hopefully develop a core of people ready to step up to training missions.

In addition TRADOC should be tasked with developing training packages that can be put in place quickly for a variety of training missions so that when a situation like this arises all that the command has to do is select the appropriate package and fine tune it for the specifics of the situation.

Just my $.02

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