Accession Number:

ADA272302

Title:

Reinventing the Wheel: Structuring Air Forces for Foreign Internal Defense

Descriptive Note:

Special series rept.,

Corporate Author:

AIR UNIV MAXWELL AFB AL AIRPOWER RESEARCH INST

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:

1991-08-01

Pagination or Media Count:

34.0

Abstract:

This paper examines the theoretical role of air forces in counterinsurgency and the disconnect between whats needed and the US Air Forces capability. The equipment, organizations, doctrine, and tactics required to support third-world counterinsurgencies are different from that which the Air Force has focused on to counter the Soviet threat in Europe. The studys purpose is to suggest a possible wing structure for the US Air Force to address the perceived shortfall. Effective US military support of counterinsurgency efforts in developing nations almost always takes the form of indirect support-training, advisory assistance, logistics, and transfer of excess military equipment. This has been United States policy since the Nixon Doctrine in 1969. The aggregate of actions taken by the United States to help another country resist an insurgency is called foreign internal defense FID. The premise of this paper is that US Air Force doctrine, force structure, and training are inadequate for the lower half of the conflict spectrum-intrastate war in developing nations where US national interests are at stake. The focus on the conventional Soviet threat to Europe over the past 45 years has left the US Air Force virtually unable to advise or assist developing nations facing internal revolution. As Gen John R. Galvin, the supreme allied commander in Europe noted, these sorts of uncomfortable wars require developers and instructors, rather than fighters, to help them solve their problems.

Subject Categories:

  • Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE