Can the Army Support the Light Division
ARMY WAR COLL CARLISLE BARRACKS PA
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In 1980, after years of designing larger and heavier divisions, to meet the soviet threat in Central Europe, the Army Leadership identified the requirement for a better balanced force. The need for a flexible response capability was the basis for todays light infantry division LID. In 1985 the light division became a reality and, with it, the Army provided the National Command Authority the option of tailoring a force that could rapidly reinforce our forward deployed forces or, by maximizing its strategic mobility, deal with contingencies in less mature theaters. The light division was designed to be no larger than 10,000 soldiers and capable of deploying in 500 C141B sorties. The combat service support CSS structure of the LID is unique and extremely light. To sustain itself beyond 48 hours, the light division requires specific corps- level augmentation and an increased amount of direct support. This paper addresses the strategic role and operational employment of the LID and examines the logistics concepts, CSS structure, and details the requirement for corps augmentation. It will make some assessments based on the LID certification exercise, the introduction of the multifunctional corps support group concept and ongoing force structure changes. Also, it will provide recommendations for enhancement of the LIDs CSS capability when used in a contingency force role and alignment of corps combat service support elements.
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics