The Civilian Irregular Defense Group: Behind the Decision to Change Operational Control
SAMS Monograph rept. Jun 2013-May 2014
ARMY COMMAND AND GENERAL STAFF COLLEGE FORT LEAVENWORTH KS SCHOOL OF ADVANCED MILITARY STUDIES
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This study examines the decision process that led to the change of operational control of the CIDG program in Vietnam from the CIA to the MACV under Operation Switchback. The method of analysis includes discussion of the mechanics of the NSC and JCS, the changes wrought by the Kennedy Administration, the effects of the Bay of Pigs and Cuban Missile Crisis upon the administrations view of the military leadership of the time, and the practical implications of administering the CIDG program that occurred within this atmosphere that led to the change. The study shows that the effect of these actions was the loss of the only Pacification force designed and trained to conduct missions with indigenous personnel until the institution of the CORDS program in 1967 and the creation of RFPFs. The study demonstrates that the decision to change operational control of the program was clearly grounded in interpersonal biases between senior civilian and military leadership rather than measures of military effectiveness.
- Administration and Management
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics