The Search for an Operational Warfighting Doctrine: What Are NATO's Options After CFE?
ARMY COMMAND AND GENERAL STAFF COLL FORT LEAVENWORTH KS SCHOOL OF ADVANCED MILITARY STUDIES
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NATOs ground force doctrine reflects the times in which it was written. It is tactically-oriented and attrition-focused. Since its adoption in 1984, the body of military thought has grown substantially. Success on the modern battlefield will demand that military commanders synchronize the effects of tactical engagements to achieve operationalstrategic goals in a theater of operationswar. The commander must grasp the art, in addition to the science of warfare. He does this through the design of major operations and campaigns. Just as important, his subordinates need a warfighting doctrine that reflects these principles. If NATO succeeds in reaching an agreement in the Conventional Forces in Europe negotiations, it can reap significant benefits. Achieving numerical parity and perhaps gaining operational depth in which to maneuver may finally correct a 40-year strategic shortcoming. However, CFE will also reduce the numbers of ground forces available in NATO critical Central Region. An even lower force-space ratio will force NATO to seriously examine its current military strategy and doctrine. The Commander in Chief, AFCENT has a vision of operational level warfighting to achieve strategic objectives in his theater. He has enunciated this in his operational warfighting concept. This concept can serve as the foundation upon which NATO can build an operational, and thus more effectively military doctrine.
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics