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Integration of Lethal and Nonlethal Fires: The Future of the Joint Fires Cell
ARMY COMMAND AND GENERAL STAFF COLL FORT LEAVENWORTH KS SCHOOL OF ADVANCED MILITARY STUDIES
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Leaders must seek to employ elements of fires, lethal and nonlethal, proportional to mission and informed through the variables contained within the operating environment. FM 3-0 went even further by tasking the Fires Cell with integrating and synchronizing the effects of lethal and nonlethal fires with the effects of other warfighting functions. This monograph extrapolates a definition of nonlethal fires and uses the essentials from FM 3-0, integration and synchronization of nonlethal fires, to make recommendations for future Army operational fires cells. The accepted definition of nonlethal is too simplistic and should be expanded nonlethal fires also change perceptions and modify behavior to shape the operational environment. To distill best practices from the current operating environment, fires cell functional organizations from OIF and OEF are examined. Focusing on the Iraqi Theater and Headquarters, Multinational Corps-Iraq, a functional examination of OIF IIs Joint Fires and Effects Cell provides lessons learned. OIF II represented the very first break with traditional models and an attempt in the Iraqi Theater at functionally organizing a lethal and nonlethal fires cell. Rotations later, OIF V represented the most recent attempt at fires cell functionality and introduced the Joint Fires Cell led by the Deputy Commanding General DCG-Fires. In Afghanistan, CJTF-76s most recent employment of a Joint Effects Cell led by the DCG-Effects showed how a division headquarters in a Joint Task Force role employed capabilities aimed at lethal and nonlethal fires. Finally, an examination of future concepts reveals that not only will the current operating environment reflect the future, but it also will become more complex. The Army must be unafraid to challenge old ways of thinking and shed stovepiped ideas. The time has come for a serious dialogue regarding FM 3-0s imperatives and our fires cell activities related to lethal and nonlethal fires.
APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE