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The Imperative of Mission Command: A Case Study of First Contact in the Korean War

Descriptive Note:

Technical Report,25 Jun 2018,23 May 2019

Corporate Author:

US Army School of Advanced Military Studies Fort Leavenworth United States

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Mission command, as both a philosophy and a warfighting function, is the conduit through which commanders provide command and control to subordinate units and the binding agent of all warfighting functions. The publication of Army Field Manual FM 3-0, Operations, in October 2017 signaled a renewed operational focus on large-scale combat operations. FM 3-0 stresses the importance of commanders utilizing mission-based orders to provide subordinates the flexibility to execute operations with disciplined initiative. Without effective use of mission command, commanders assume greater risk to mission success. As demonstrated in July 1950, by US and North Korean Peoples Army forces, the absence of mission command supported by effective command and control systems denies flexibility in a time constrained environment, creating an inability to effectively transition to the next phase of the operation.

Subject Categories:

  • Military Forces and Organizations
  • Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics

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