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Old 08-21-2009   #21
Bob's World
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While I realize that "write doctrine" is arguably the principle task of the Regular force in peace; we need to ask who has the principle task of "read and employ doctrine," and tailor the doctrinal products to that audiance.

Mostly doctrine is for students and higher level staffs. While, as Ken points out, the bulk of the force is at BN and below; I doubt highly that that is the bulk of the doctrine audance.

What the guys and gals at that level need are usable products that convert doctrine to the environment that they will be expected to operate in. Pocket guides that help Platoon leaders and Squad leaders gain effectiveness through the experiences of others.

Could we use less doctrine? Undoubtedly.

Should we attempt to achieve this by stripping the life out of what is already dry reading to begin with, in some effort to make one size fit all? I think that would be a disaster.

Remember, the historic strength of the American warfighting force has always been that the warfighter himself was a draftee or volunteer brought on specifically to fight the war, and who had probably never been within 10 paces of a doctrinal manual. The regulars up at Division had those books and had taught them at places like Benning and Leavenworth. Doctrine shapes the operational construct, but it does not guide the fight.
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Old 08-21-2009   #22
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Here is an example of what I was talking about. The Combat Leaders Field Guide....comes in big size and pocket size. As a PDF file you can print what you need or all of it, you add or delete as needed.

http://www.au.af.mil/au/awc/awcgate/army/clg.pdf
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Old 08-21-2009   #23
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Default Why not do both?

Might it not be possible to not only as one Ursus H. posts and produce a pocket manual of useful info for Bn and below--perhaps with very short quotes, and separately produce a reading list of relevant books for those with time and interest? Perhaps e-books for some or links to the relevant library?
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Old 08-21-2009   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob's World View Post
Could we use less doctrine? Undoubtedly.

Should we attempt to achieve this by stripping the life out of what is already dry reading to begin with, in some effort to make one size fit all? I think that would be a disaster.

Remember, the historic strength of the American warfighting force has always been that the warfighter himself was a draftee or volunteer brought on specifically to fight the war, and who had probably never been within 10 paces of a doctrinal manual. The regulars up at Division had those books and had taught them at places like Benning and Leavenworth. Doctrine shapes the operational construct, but it does not guide the fight.
Amen. In a speech delivered to the conservative backbench Foreign affairs committee, House of Commons, March 1936, Winston S. Churchill said in part:

"Those who are possessed of a definitive body of doctrine and of deeply rooted convictions upon it will be in a much better position to deal with the shifts and surprises of daily affairs than those who are merely taking the short views, and indulging their natural implses as they are evoked by what they read from day to day. The first thing is to decide where you want to go."
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Old 08-21-2009   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by William F. Owen View Post
I'm sure they did do their homework, and a bright and committed men.

FM3 Chap 2

That is a set of opinions. None of the statements contained therein are historically accurate, or supported by military history. FM3 also fails to use the widely accepted historical definition of Irregular Warfare, "warfare against an irregular opponent." - eg: Small Wars.

How many more examples do you wish for?
While I might personally agree with you that the U.S. definition of IW may not be the right one, you are comparing your interpretation of military history with another. Any history is interpretation based on fact. Yours differs from DOD policy, joint doctrine, and Army doctrine, as FM 3-0 is built to be consistent with DOD policy and joint doctrine. If you want to attack the way irregular warfare is treated, you'll have to start at the top. Next fun question: what is an irregular opponent? I understand it, the group who did the analysis for the first IW JOC considered using this as the basis for IW, but rejected it.
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Old 08-21-2009   #26
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Originally Posted by Ursus horribilis toklat View Post
In one of my posts yesterday I said that the initial draft (15 June 2009) of FM 6-0 had no quotes from key leaders past or present or any historical vignettes. I was wrong (this applies only to the 2009 drafts of FM 5-0 and FM 3-92). In fact the 2009 initial draft of FM 6-0 contains eight quotes and four historical vignettes. What I should have said is that the relative paucity of quotes and historical vignettes as compared to the published version, 11 August 2003, (which has some 28 quotes and 12 historical vignettes) is startling. As Klugzilla points out, the relative paucity of quotes and historical vignettes in the 2009 initial draft of FM 6-0 may be an artifact of the recent trend toward brevity (the published version has some 333 pages). I submit we should not sacrifice the historical underpinning of the principles contained in these doctrinal manuals (and the wisdom of those who have gone before) on the altar of brevity. That would be a false economy that could get us into trouble in the long run.
As I mentioned before, I too hate to see this happening; however, the actual appearance of quotes, vignettes, etc. does not necessarily mean that history does not underpin doctrine. That train has left the station.

Also, we have yet to settle on a format for the ATTP, which is where vignettes may have the most impact. I think this ties into the Bob's World post.
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Old 08-21-2009   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ursus horribilis toklat View Post
Amen. In a speech delivered to the conservative backbench Foreign affairs committee, House of Commons, March 1936, Winston S. Churchill said in part:

"Those who are possessed of a definitive body of doctrine and of deeply rooted convictions upon it will be in a much better position to deal with the shifts and surprises of daily affairs than those who are merely taking the short views, and indulging their natural implses as they are evoked by what they read from day to day. The first thing is to decide where you want to go."

I personally like this quotation:

I am tempted to say that whatever doctrine the armed forces are working on now, they have got it wrong. I am also tempted to declare that it does not matter…What does matter is their ability to get it right quickly, when the moment arrives.
—Sir Michael Howard
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Old 08-21-2009   #28
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Default Regular vs irregular opponent

Serious question from this:

Quote:
from Klugzilla
Next fun question: what is an irregular opponent? I understand it, the group who did the analysis for the first IW JOC considered using this as the basis for IW, but rejected it.
What is your understanding of which you speak - the definition which was rejected ?

The reason for my question is that the distinction between regular and irregular combatants underlies the key issues (in LOAC); about which, I attempt to post with some semblence of professionalism.

This is a basic definition on which both military and legal have to occupy the same page.

Regards

Mike
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Old 08-21-2009   #29
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Originally Posted by jmm99 View Post
Serious question from this:



What is your understanding of which you speak - the definition which was rejected ?

The reason for my question is that the distinction between regular and irregular combatants underlies the key issues (in LOAC); about which, I attempt to post with some semblence of professionalism.

This is a basic definition on which both military and legal have to occupy the same page.

Regards

Mike
Agreed. However, I was referring to the fact that the doctrinal definition of irregular warfare focuses on the population, not irregular combatants, formations, tactics, etc. This was established in the IW JOC and put into doctrine via JP 1 and FM 3-0.

There is a joint or Army definition of irregular forces, which isn't necessarily tied to irregular warfare (I personally see the disconnect). However, the definition is “Armed individuals or groups who are not members of the regular armed forces, police, or other internal security forces.” I would like to see that definition refined and expanded upon. As it reads, it essentially says they’re irregular forces because they’re not regular. And there is no definition of regular forces. The definition for paramilitary forces has similar problems. If you have any suggestions, I would love to hear them and potentially get them into doctrine. Do we all basically know the difference between regular, paramilitary, and irregular forces? Yes, but I would like to see the doctrinal definitions improved.
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Old 08-21-2009   #30
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Default Hey, sounds like a new thread ....

Quote:
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There is a joint or Army definition of irregular forces, which isn't necessarily tied to irregular warfare (I personally see the disconnect). However, the definition is “Armed individuals or groups who are not members of the regular armed forces, police, or other internal security forces.” I would like to see that definition refined and expanded upon. As it reads, it essentially says they’re irregular forces because they’re not regular. And there is no definition of regular forces. The definition for paramilitary forces has similar problems. If you have any suggestions, I would love to hear them and potentially get them into doctrine. Do we all basically know the difference between regular, paramilitary, and irregular forces? Yes, but I would like to see the doctrinal definitions improved.
If this hasn't been "threaded" before (need to check), should it go in "Doctrine & TTPs", "Training & Education" or elsewhere. It is not "Law Enforcement", since the primary importance is in things military (and its interfaces with diplomacy and policy).

Mike
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Old 08-22-2009   #31
William F. Owen
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Originally Posted by Klugzilla View Post
While I might personally agree with you that the U.S. definition of IW may not be the right one, you are comparing your interpretation of military history with another.
I'm not sure I am. I don't view Military history as a buffet bar to be raided selectively in support of doctrine. If it is, then that forgives all the stupidity you see in armies today! Military history does layout clear lessons, and the context of those lessons is critical. The US IW definition is not founded in any historical fact. It is a definition used to support doctrine, when it should be the opposite.

Quote:
Next fun question: what is an irregular opponent? I understand it, the group who did the analysis for the first IW JOC considered using this as the basis for IW, but rejected it.
An irregular opponent is one that is not part of a regular army. Regular armies have a defined set of legal, social and organisational characteristics, generally lacking in irregulars.
That the JOC rejected it, is not evidence that we should. The JOC came up with "hybrid," which is a clumsy forcing mechanisms to try and short cut real military education.
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Old 08-23-2009   #32
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Default TTPs/Doctrine in Binders

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Originally Posted by Ken White View Post
What's need are Doctrinal Manuals, in loose leaf binder and .pdf format (everyone may not always have AKO access) which can and should be limited to less than 100 and of less than 200 pages but including background and historical material -- easily achieved by tighter writing and elimination of redundancy -- and Field Manuals, limited to less than 100 of no more than 100 pages that are the operators manuals for the technical publications that are the Doctrinal Manuals which contain all the amplifying detail and the references.
Ken-

Not sure what the current format is for the Army manuals (I mainly end up looking at them online), but the most commonly used Air Force doctrine (TTPs) are in this format. The AFTTP3-XX series provides the main foundation for AF employment at the "doer" level, and are usually in a binder with page protectors. They also have some pretty good illustrations and usually a summary at then end that brings together the biggest points in an appendix.

Anyway, seems to work pretty good.

V/R,

Cliff

Last edited by Cliff; 08-23-2009 at 01:17 AM.
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Old 08-23-2009   #33
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Default Thanks, Cliff. Good to know

Big Blue didn't lose the bubble. The Army used to do it that way, then the educators got involved...
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Old 08-24-2009   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by William F. Owen View Post
I'm not sure I am. I don't view Military history as a buffet bar to be raided selectively in support of doctrine. If it is, then that forgives all the stupidity you see in armies today! Military history does layout clear lessons, and the context of those lessons is critical. The US IW definition is not founded in any historical fact. It is a definition used to support doctrine, when it should be the opposite.


An irregular opponent is one that is not part of a regular army. Regular armies have a defined set of legal, social and organisational characteristics, generally lacking in irregulars.
That the JOC rejected it, is not evidence that we should. The JOC came up with "hybrid," which is a clumsy forcing mechanisms to try and short cut real military education.
I don't view military history as a buffet, but you have to survey all of the appropriate facts and establish a hypothesis. The authors of the IW JOC surveyed the historical facts and established a hypothesis. While you may not agree with their hypothesis, and I’m not sure I’m completely sold either, there is historical fact that supports the current IW definition. And the definition for IW was first established in the JOC and then doctrine was written for that paradigm, not the other way around. From writing several recent doctrinal manuals, I can say that the manuals flow from theory and terminology. For example, how you define insurgency drives COIN doctrine.

Please elaborate on the defined set of legal, social, and organizational characteristics—that is the hard part. Although this material will not appear in the definition itself, it will have to be discussed in some detail in support of the definition. This discussion tends to quickly become mired in mirror imaging and cultural bias. And “generally lacking in irregulars” is circular.
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Old 08-24-2009   #35
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Originally Posted by Klugzilla View Post
From writing several recent doctrinal manuals, I can say that the manuals flow from theory and terminology. For example, how you define insurgency drives COIN doctrine.
I beg to differ. I think the doctrine often drives the definitions. The very fact that you wanted to develop a "COIN Doctrine" instead of a broad guide to conduct of Irregular Warfare is symptomatic of that.

Quote:
Please elaborate on the defined set of legal, social, and organisational characteristics—that is the hard part.
Not sure I understand the question. Define an irregular enemy? That depends on your define a regular.
Regular Forces are, trained, paid and organised as declared and defined instruments of state power - all others are irregular.

So for example, regular soldiers have pay books, ID papers etc, and thus even US Special Forces are very regular soldiers.
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- If we can double the ratio of kills per contact, we will soon put an end to the shooting in Malaya.
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Old 08-24-2009   #36
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Originally Posted by William F. Owen View Post
An irregular opponent is one that is not part of a regular army. Regular armies have a defined set of legal, social and organisational characteristics, generally lacking in irregulars.
Emphasis on "generally". Much of the weakness of your statement is in that single word.

Examples:
* East India Companies
* European 15th-17th century mercs.
* Japanese warrior monks.
* Boers

It's also difficult to use "irregular" in context of mixed opposition (VC/NVA, Mercs among soldiers in Iraq/AFG, Palestina campaign 1917).

By the way; what's a "regular" army and what not? That's another weak spot of your definition.
Some armies of the world include(d) militias and even partisans. The Russians would likely field many para-military, non-regular "army" troops in a future conflict (troops of ministry of interior, KGB successor troops, border patrol).
Germany gives combatant status to its border police (meant for WW3), while much of France's police is (para)military Gendarmerie. About 10% of the German Eastern front army in 1942-1945 were ex-Soviet troops ("Hilfswillige", people willing to help) who were employed with rudimentary markings and unarmed. They weren't officially subject to martial courts and such. Were these men irregulars?
What about Soviet Red Army troops who were overrun and turned to partisan warfare? Regulars or irregulars?

A 95% definition is no useful definition.


edit: I forgot to add Austrian-Hungarian border settlers, Russian Cossacks, letter of marque,

Last edited by Fuchs; 08-24-2009 at 09:42 PM.
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Old 08-24-2009   #37
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Originally Posted by William F. Owen View Post
I beg to differ. I think the doctrine often drives the definitions. The very fact that you wanted to develop a "COIN Doctrine" instead of a broad guide to conduct of Irregular Warfare is symptomatic of that.


Not sure I understand the question. Define an irregular enemy? That depends on your define a regular.
Regular Forces are, trained, paid and organised as declared and defined instruments of state power - all others are irregular.

So for example, regular soldiers have pay books, ID papers etc, and thus even US Special Forces are very regular soldiers.

I personally wanted to write an IW JP and have advocated writing an Army IW FM, so please don't assume that I personally just leaped to writing a COIN JP. Developing or not developing a joint publication is not one individual author's choice, although they certainly can make recommendations. Irregular warfare is covered in higher JPs, although I personally think it needs more detail and development, and the joint community wanted IW to permeate all joint doctrine rather have reside in one pub, so it was decided not to develop an IW pub.

As far as the COIN manual goes, there was a gap in joint doctrine with respect to COIN and the Army therefore proposed that we develop a COIN JP. This proposal had to be consistent with policy and approved by the voting members (Services, Joint Staff J-7, ALSA, GCCs, and FCCs). In this case, the members voted unanimously to develop a COIN JP. There are similar considerations for FMs.
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Old 08-25-2009   #38
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Originally Posted by Fuchs View Post
A 95% definition is no useful definition.
Well I strongly disagree. 95% is certainly good enough. No definition in warfare can be perfect. EG:
What is a Tank? CV-120? CVR-T?
Define a mortar, bearing in mind there are breach loading, rifled, direct fire mortar systems.

Some definitions of regular and irregular are going to be very context specific, so yes the context will provide a dimension so....

Examples:
* East India Companies - Regular in the context of whom they are contracted to, and used against
* European 15th-17th century mercs.- same as above
* Japanese warrior monks. - Serving the Emperor and fighting against whom?
* Boers - very definitely irregular.

Native Americans fighting Native Americans, is State v State Warfare or Nation v Nation. - context.

My definition is not to serve a general theory of war, but to provide the basis for teaching/discussion for Western/NATO armies in the early 21st century.
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- If we can double the ratio of kills per contact, we will soon put an end to the shooting in Malaya.
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Old 08-25-2009   #39
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The Japanese warrior monks had "a defined set of legal, social and organisational characteristics".
Yet, they didn't serve a state, army, emperor or whatsoever. They were essentially sects that reached the proficiency and degree of organization of regular armies, albeit differently.

Your 95% definition doesn't tell for sure in any case whether a crowd is a regular or irregular force. Your exception ("generally lacking") is too unspecific.
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Old 08-25-2009   #40
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I'd also take issue with the Native Americans example, but now we're down to splitting hairs....
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