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Simultaneous Transformation and Rapid Growth of the US Army in World War II

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[Technical Report, Master's Thesis]

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No one knew it at the time, but the Victory Plan of 1941 became the operational concept used by the United States and her Allies to wage World War II. MAJ Albert C. Wedemeyer, a US Army Major who had arrived at the War Plans Division at the War Department just a few months prior, led the study. Written in the months prior to the events at Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, the plan was incredibly accurate at predicting an operational concept to a strategy that was as yet unstated and far from clear. The methodology MAJ Wedemeyer used to develop the plan allowed for the rapid growth and simultaneous transformation of the US Army. Could the US Army use this methodology again today in a similar manner The research for this paper found that the US Army could only numerically support defensive operations in the Baltics and could not support offensive operations. The less than 12 ratio of armored brigades potentially available was the most striking finding. The aggregate combat power of sixty-nine NATO BDEs to seventy-six Russian BDEs, to include ABCTs, ACRs, IBCTs, SBCTs, MEBs, and CABs, still comes out to less than 11 for the USNATO. Similar to the dilemma that MAJ Albert Wedemeyer faced, the US Army would have to rapidly grow and simultaneously transform to conduct offensive operations under an acceptable force ratio against a peer or near-peer threat.

Subject Categories:

  • Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics

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[A, Approved For Public Release]