Operational Art and the Amphibious Assault: Will OMFTS Break the US Amphibious Assault Sword?
NAVAL WAR COLL NEWPORT RI JOINT MILITARY OPERATIONS DEPT
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The end of the cold war has shifted the attention of U.S. Navy from the open ocean to the worlds littorals. Operational Maneuver from the Sea OMFTS and Ship-to-Objective Maneuver STOM are the flagship concepts that the sea services are maturing to adapt amphibious operations to this new threat environment--OMFTS at the operational level and STOM at the tactical level. However, after years of experimentation, OMFTS and STOM are exhibiting friction points, most notably in the area of logistics. Are these challenges merely the growing pains of amphibious evolution or could they be symptoms of a greater problem, flawed operational art OMFTS and STOM, as envisioned in concept, threaten to unhinge an operationally successful, battle-tested, operational art construct trade space for time, invest time in force, apply force at decisive point by over-emphasizing space and time maneuver and tempo at the expense of force. The most alarming impacts of such a shift in amphibious doctrine will be felt on logistics. This paper explores the rationale and logic behind the current vector of on-going transformation through a logistic and operational art lens and suggests the U.S. maintain a flexible amphibious capability, comprised of both traditional and evolving amphibious operations concepts.
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics