Accession Number:

ADA463436

Title:

Post Conflict Operations and the Combatant Commander -- Lessons Learned from Operation Iraqi Freedom

Descriptive Note:

Research paper

Corporate Author:

NAVAL WAR COLL NEWPORT RI JOINT MILITARY OPERATIONS DEPT

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:

2006-02-13

Pagination or Media Count:

25.0

Abstract:

On May 1, 2003, before a live television audience onboard the USS Abraham Lincoln, President George W. Bush declared victory for the United States and the end of major combat operations in Iraq. Preceding the presidents speech was perhaps the most stunning display of technological superiority and joint conventional fire power in military history. In just 26 days, the United States and coalition forces had invaded Iraq, defeated Iraqi conventional forces, ousted President Saddam Hussein from power, and terminated the Baath partys 35-year hold on Iraq. Even the harshest critics of the war were claiming that there had never been a combat operation as successful as Operation Iraqi Freedom. Omitted from the Presidents jubilant speech, however, was that the United States campaign in Iraq was far from over. The defeat of Iraqi conventional forces and subsequent regime change were trigger points for the coalitions transition to the final phase of Operation Iraqi Freedom -- post-conflict operations. Post-conflict or post-hostility operations are activities taken to stabilize, secure, and reconstruct an area of operations AO to transition the AO back to peace and civilian government control. Almost 3 years after President Bushs declaration of the end of major combat operations, the United States is still heavily engaged in stability, security, transition, and reconstruction operations in Iraq. This thesis states that U.S. Combatant Commanders struggled to transition to and execute post-conflict operations in Iraq for three main reasons. To support his thesis, the author examines shortfalls in the formulation of the plan for post-conflict operations analyzes the lack of interagency coordination and communication and how it affected the Office of Reconstruction and Humanitarian Assistance ORHA and its subsequent successor, the Coalition Provisional Authority CPA and examines how lack of operational intelligence and cultural awareness contributed to the problem.

Subject Categories:

  • Government and Political Science
  • Sociology and Law
  • Military Forces and Organizations
  • Unconventional Warfare

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE