Lighting the Eclipse: Comparing the Planning for the Occupations of Germany and Iraq
ARMY COMMAND AND GENERAL STAFF COLLEGE FORT LEAVENWORTH KS SCHOOL OF ADVANCED MILITARY STUDIES
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Effective execution of mission command and unified action was apparent in the occupation planning of World War II and not in Operation Iraqi Freedom OIF. Both conflicts had various agencies conducting planning and both received vague policy guidance from national leaders. Likewise, both conflicts predicted rapid timelines for transitions from military to civilian rule and the shift from occupation duties to redeployment. The major difference between World War II and OIF was that in World War II, products flowed to the operational planners at SHAEF who were writing ECLIPSE. During the planning for OIF, due to interagency and bureaucratic considerations and interests, planning products remained compartmented and generally not forwarded to CFLCC operational planners. While all of the various efforts by the Department of Defense, Department of State, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and various other organizations were produced in the spirit of forwarding Americas strategic interests in Iraq and the region, no policy was constructed that would establish a central focal point for their consideration. Additionally, the differences in the planning approaches between ECLIPSE and ECLIPSE II are what fueled their initial outcomes. These differences in planning included the time dedicated to the planning process for ECLIPSE and the level of detail that the additional time entailed. Another difference was the occupation philosophy of the planning staff as well as their respective commanders based on their experiences. In ECLIPSE, occupation was the key, in ECLIPSE II, peace enforcement over occupation was the paradigm.
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics