Tactical Exploitation: Neglected Imperative of Modern Combat.
ARMY COMMAND AND GENERAL STAFF COLL FORT LEAVENWORTH KS SCHOOL OF ADVANCED MIL ITARY STUDIES
Pagination or Media Count:
This monograph investigates the US Armys preparedness to execute tactical exploitation during conventional symmetrical offensive operations between heavy forces. Exploitation is a critical tactical operation. Successful offensive operations impart significant, but temporary, physical and psychological benefits to the attacker. Given the time to reconstitute or regenerate forces, the defender will likely recover and force his opponent into another costly and resource-intensive attack. However, when the victor promptly and properly exploits these benefits, he is able to maintain offensive pressure. Immediate, aggressive, and continuous tactical exploitation can keep the enemy off balance and create opportunities for the attackers operational success. This paper examines and evaluates the US Armys present preparedness for tactical exploitation and then compares it to future requirements. The paper addresses preparedness using the organizing framework of doctrine, organization, training, material, and leader development. Operations other than war, operations in an NBC environment, and organizations outside the heavy division are outside the scope of this paper. This study begins with a survey of classic and contemporary military thought to establish the theoretical and practical foundations for exploitation. Next, it presents a comprehensive analysis of current US Army exploitation readiness. Third, the study examines the potential future tactical value of, and opportunity for, successful exploitation. Then the monograph assesses the impact of the difference between present capability and future requirements for exploitation.
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics