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SWJED
11-20-2006, 10:44 AM
20 November Los Angeles Times - Army Gives Rumsfeld Doctrine a Rewrite (http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-doctrine20nov20,0,2021606.story?coll=la-home-headlines) by Julian Barnes.


Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld may be leaving under a cloud of criticism over his handling of the Iraq war, but his invasion plan emphasizing speed over massive troop numbers has consistently been held up as a resounding success.

Yet with Iraq near chaos 3 1/2 years later, a key Army manual now is being rewritten in a way that rejects the Rumsfeld doctrine and counsels against using it again.

The draft version of the Army's Full Spectrum Operations field manual argues that in addition to defeating the enemy, military units must focus on providing security for the population even during major combat.

"The big idea here is that stability tasks have to be a consideration at every level and every operation," said Clinton J. Ancker III, head of the Army's Combined Arms Doctrine Directorate and an author of the guide.

Officers use the field manual, the authoritative guidebook on how to conduct ground operations, to develop tactics for military endeavors including war, counterinsurgency and peacekeeping. When completed, the manual will be taught to officers at all levels.

Before the war, Rumsfeld prodded Gen. Tommy Franks and other officers to design an invasion plan to fit his beliefs about how modern militaries should fight. When Saddam Hussein's regime collapsed and Baghdad seemed to fall in just 21 days, Rumsfeld and his emphasis on speed over mass got the credit.

But after the initial military success, the Pentagon was criticized for not doing enough to plan for postwar stability. And Rumsfeld drew objections for his dismissive attitude toward the disorder and looting in Iraq, particularly when he said, just days after the fall of Baghdad, that "stuff happens" in democracies.

The old manual emphasized that stability operations usually follow combat. The draft version of the 2007 ground operations manual instructs commanders that they cannot wait for offensive operations to end before providing security and services for the population, and stresses a combination of offense, defense and stability operations...

Much more at the link.