The Operational Capability of the American Expeditionary Forces in the World War
SAMS monograph rept.
ARMY COMMAND AND GENERAL STAFF COLLEGE FORT LEAVENWORTH KS SCHOOL OF ADVANCED MILITARY STUDIES
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In 1918, the American Expeditionary Forces AEF had to change to fight in the new and complex environment of World War I. The AEF increased its operational capabilities significantly from the United States declaration of war in 1917 to the time of the Armistice in November 1918. The examination and analysis of the pre-war doctrine, the difficulty of selecting a general officer with experience to lead a large army, and the selection and training of both the officers and soldiers of the AEF establishes the state of the AEF prior to the start war. Further analysis of the progression of the AEF during actual fighting in the summer and fall of 1918 tracks the growth and changes of the AEF. Finally, examining the AEFs change in organizational structure, ability to grow as a learning organization, and application of operational art identifies the AEFs increase in operational capability. Understanding the techniques used by the AEF to improve operational capability could have major impacts on United States Army and could help large units faced with difficult and ambiguous problems to adapt. Primary source accounts, doctrine, and unit histories as well as secondary historical studies of the AEF provide the information for the study of the AEF. The last thirteen years of operational deployments has required the United States military to adapt to a constantly changing environment. Studying the AEF and the adaptation from a small force to a large industrial army can provide the current US Army with examples on transformation and growth in complex environments.
- Military Forces and Organizations
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics