Accession Number:

ADA517869

Title:

Developing Joint Counterinsurgency Doctrine: An Airman's Perspective

Descriptive Note:

Journal article

Corporate Author:

NATIONAL DEFENSE UNIV WASHINGTON DC INST FOR NATIONAL STRATEGIC STUDIES

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:

2008-01-01

Pagination or Media Count:

8.0

Abstract:

How does the U.S. military plan to win in Iraq According to some, The Book on Iraq is the Armys new Field Manual FM 3-24 designated by the Marine Corps as Warfighting Publication 3-33.5, Counterinsurgency. Though this manual may have been meant as simply operational level doctrine for two Services, as one contributor insists, it quickly became viewed as much more. Senator John McCain R-AZ, reflecting the received wisdom of many senior leaders and probably the public at large, describes FM 3-24 as the blueprint of U.S. efforts in Iraq today. FM 3-24 does superbly articulate a thoughtful landpower perspective on the complicated challenge of counterinsurgency COIN. It does not purport to be, however, a full-dimensional joint approach. Indeed, the official Department of Defense DOD announcement unveiling the doctrine crowed that it was a real team effort of Army and Marine writers, underlining the absence of the other Services, who emphasize the air, space, sea, and cyberspace warfighting domains. The result Among other things, the discussion of airpower is largely relegated to a 5-page annex in the nearly 300-page text. Moreover, that short discussion inexplicably discourages the use of the air weapon in a way not applicable to other fires. Ironically, notwithstanding the doctrine, airstrikes in Iraq soared fivefold in 2007. COIN operations present the kind of multifaceted problem that defies solution by any one component. Despite the ferocious efforts and eye-watering valor of Americas Soldiers and Marines, the various groundcentric COIN strategies attempted in Iraq over the years may have proven costly and time-consuming. Exploiting the full capabilities of the whole joint team would seem the wiser course given the complexities of COIN.

Subject Categories:

  • Government and Political Science
  • Sociology and Law
  • Military Forces and Organizations
  • Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics
  • Unconventional Warfare

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE