Transforming in War: The Armored Infantry Battalions of World War II. A Small Unit Case Study
ARMY WAR COLL CARLISLE BARRACKS PA
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The United States Army has been transforming for over two hundred years. Concentrated periods of simultaneous revisions in doctrine, equipment, and manning structure such as are proposed for the 21st Century Army occur rarely. The Army as an institution tends to focus upon designing, procuring and fielding new equipment doctrinal development and validation and force structure design and development. The integration of the individual soldier and his small unit leaders in the process of comprehensive change or transformation is poorly understood and rarely recognized. This case study examines a family of units, the Armored Infantry Battalions of Americas World War II armored divisions, for small unit lessons in the transformation process. In a concentrated period of time, these battalions underwent multiple equipment and doctrinal transformations concurrent with massive personnel turnover, major exercises, unit moves and ultimately, the crucible of combat in the European Theater of the Second World War. The perspectives and experiences of small unit leaders and soldiers who were participants are winnowed to develop working recommendations for small unit leaders in current Army Transformation.
- Humanities and History
- Military Forces and Organizations