Force XXI Logistics: Operational Distribution on the Future Battlefield.
NAVAL WAR COLL NEWPORT RI
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The future Armed Forces of the United States will be broadly based upon four emerging operational concepts Dominant maneuver, precision engagement, focused logistics and full dimension protection. This paper will discuss a specific aspect of one of these emerging concepts operational distribution in focused logistics. Focused logistics will harness information technology and related management principles toward the goals of increasing responsiveness while reducing the cost and footprint of logistics forces in a theater of operations. Across all levels of logistics this new paradigm will result in fewer support personnel resulting in lower manpower costs, lower quantities of stocked supplies, lower storage volumes and associated costs. This is a dramatic departure from our historical logistics paradigm which was based upon mass and redundancy. This departure from the past has benefits, but it also has largely unexplored potential risks. Operational distribution is the key to making focused logistics work on the future non-linear battlefield. The concept for operational distribution in focused logistics does not take into account the future battlefield environment or our recent experiences in Vietnam, Somalia, and Haiti. It is through the exploration of the benefits and risks of the concept, along with the full appreciation for the complexity and friction of the future battlefield, that this paper hopes to provide some valuable discussion.
- Logistics, Military Facilities and Supplies