Accession Number:

ADA523000

Title:

Adapting to the Uncertain Nature of Future Conflict

Descriptive Note:

Monograph rept. Jul 2009-May 2010

Corporate Author:

ARMY COMMAND AND GENERAL STAFF COLL FORT LEAVENWORTH KS SCHOOL OF ADVANCED MILITARY STUDIES

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:

2010-04-14

Pagination or Media Count:

94.0

Abstract:

It is not known against whom or where the United States Army will fight next, nor is it clear what the nature of that conflict will be. What is relatively certain is that the United States Army will likely initially get it wrong, regardless of its level of preparation. In order to prevail, it will have to adapt. The Army is currently focused on winning its two wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. But these two wars will not last forever and other potential antagonists loom on the horizon. The Army must balance its mandate to win the current wars with its responsibility to prepare for and win unknown future conflicts. The Army must be prepared to fight a war for which it has not previously prepared. This monograph will analyze how two foreign armies prepared for the uncertain nature of their future conflicts. The first case study analyzes the British Army following World War II 1945-1960, when the British, who prepared to fight the Soviets in major combat operations in Europe, instead fought numerous counterinsurgency campaigns, including Malaya. The British Army, in spite of its extensive recent combat experience in World War II, and partially because of it, initially performed poorly but over time correctly came to understand the nature of the conflict, adapted, and defeated the insurgency. The second case study examines the Israeli Army 2000-2006 following its 2000 withdrawal from Lebanon when it prepared to fight a counterinsurgency but instead fought a hybrid war of mixed major combat operations and counterinsurgency in Lebanon in 2006. The Israeli Army, in spite of its recent counterinsurgency experience and perhaps partially because of it fared poorly it did not fully understand the nature of the conflict in which it fought and took too long to adapt to its new realities.

Subject Categories:

  • Military Forces and Organizations
  • Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics
  • Unconventional Warfare

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE