Proceedings of a Colloquium on Total Force Management Held in Santa Monica, California on 27-28 September 1989,
RAND CORP SANTA MONICA CA
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In 1973, the Department of Defense DoD adopted a total force policy, which stipulated that all elements of the force structure-including not only active and reserve components, but also civil servants in the DoD, civilian contractors, and retired military personnel-should be considered concurrently in developing military capability in support of national security objectives. In essence, the total force policy states that missions should be given to whichever component can achieve them most economically. The intent of the policy is to make better use of the reserve components and to save money by shifting some of the functions formerly performed solely by active units to the reserves and other personnel. This policy differs significantly from previous practice, which relied almost exclusively on the active components for all early deployment missions, support as well as combat. Much of the focus of the policy, and much of the debate and research, has been on the use of Guard and Reserve units. Instead of being seen as units to be held until needed in a major contingency, they would become integral parts of a total force structure.
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