RAF and ARFORGEN
ARMY WAR COLLEGE CARLISLE BARRACKS PA STRATEGIC STUDIES INSTITUTE
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The United States Army s concept to regionally align units to geographic combatant commands is over 5 years old.1 Operation New Dawn s end and the falling requirement for Army units in Afghanistan have created an opportunity for the Army to accelerate regional alignment from concept to force management policy.2 Despite recent concept modifications, the fundamental purpose of regional alignment has not changed--how can the United States Army best prepare units for combatant command employment to protect or preserve United States interests in the face of a constantly changing international security environment, domestic budget constraints, and recent historical experiences in preparing and maintaining unit readiness3 This essay examines the impact of the Regional Alignment of Forces RAF Policy on the Army s ability to generate trained and ready forces through the Army Force Generation ARFORGEN process and subsequent impact on the six geographic combatant commands. Regional alignment of forces provides combatant commands Army units prepared for employment across the range of military operations specific to a geographic region. Maintaining the Army Force Generation process allows the Army to prioritize resources and manage readiness for operating units supporting regionally aligned missions.4 However, refining both the Regionally Aligned Force and Army Force Generation policies allows the Army to better prepare and manage Army units for combatant command employment. Twelve policy recommendations are advanced for enhancing Regionally Aligned Force and Army Force Generation policies. The global security situation is complex. Fifteen United Nations peacekeeping operations and over 50 armed conflicts are in progress worldwide.
- Military Forces and Organizations
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics