False Assumptions: Military Assistance Command Vietnam s (MACV) use of the Combined Strategic Objectives Plan, 1970 and its Operationalization at the Field Force Level
ARMY COMMAND AND GENERAL STAFF COLLEGE FORT LEAVENWORTH KS SCHOOL OF ADVANCED MILITARY STUDIES
Pagination or Media Count:
In 1970, Military Assistance Command Vietnam MACV published the Combined Strategic Objectives Plan CSOP. This document was a collaborative effort that involved both the US Army planners and members of Republic of Vietnams RVN Joint General Staff. The CSOP was an expansive document intended to detail the new operational approach General Creighton Abrams championed during his command of MACV. This operational approach departed from the previous search and destroy methodology and sought fully to implement President Nixons policy of Vietnamization. Abrams strategy was twofold and involved attacks against communist support networks while simultaneously putting much greater emphasis on the development of the South Vietnamese government and armed forces. For the CSOP and General Abrams new operational approach to work, however, two key assumptions would have to prove correct, the continued support of the American people and that the communists were unable or unwilling to mount a conventional invasion. The CSOP provides an excellent case for analysis due to its thoroughness and breadth. It was not merely meant to cover the military aspects of the war effort, but to capture the effort at creating stable governance as well. However, due to its complexity it was also difficult to operationalize at the Field Force level, resulting in very little short-term change to US Army operations.
- Government and Political Science
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics