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Old 04-29-2012   #1
gute
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Default New Division HQs Coming to Fort Lewis

http://www.army.mil/article/78769/Se...Lewis_McChord/

What is the reason(s) for this? The article claims the need for an intermediate HQs between the BCTs and I Corps and not due to the incidents in Afghanistan. Maybe so, but could the change in leadership in North Korea have something to do with this change? Along with the shift of 9,000 Marines from Okinawa to Guam and the addition of 2,500 Marines to Australia - maybe this is just part of the new Pacific focused Air-Sea Battle concept.
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Old 04-29-2012   #2
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Why not simply bring the 2 ID HQ from Korea to Ft Lewis? The fort has three brigades of 2 ID already there......or task the I Corps Deputy to be the "leadership mentor" conduit for the various BDEs on the installation?
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Old 04-29-2012   #3
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Gute,

Quote:
What is the reason(s) for this?
This is how the Army is transforming to become a flatter and more agile organization.

All joking aside, I suspect the Corp HQs at Ft. Lewis (which isn't designed to manage BDEs) was overwhelmed with administrative tasks that was distracting from their mission.
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Old 05-01-2012   #4
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Default V Corps

And how is the situation differen then the one in Europe with V Corps and 4 BCTs?

Me thinks its a response to some bad PR regarding/about Lewis Soldiers.
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Old 05-01-2012   #5
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Default I think you're correct.

I also think it is perhaps not the best solution...

If the kids are acting up, replacing Hall Monitors with School Resource Officers may give the appearance of an improvement but the real issue is inadequate performance by or power available to those Monitors. A better, long term and cheaper solution is to just make the Monitors do their job -- or, more accurately, allow them to do that...
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Old 05-02-2012   #6
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I also think it is perhaps not the best solution...

If the kids are acting up, replacing Hall Monitors with School Resource Officers may give the appearance of an improvement but the real issue is inadequate performance by or power available to those Monitors. A better, long term and cheaper solution is to just make the Monitors do their job -- or, more accurately, allow them to do that...
That's amazing. Brigades commanded by colonels and they need a 2-star general between them and a three-star general at I Corps to "keep them in line" - WTF? Talk about stuck on stupid.
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Old 05-02-2012   #7
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What's the point of having a division structure at all? It was found to be wanting for motorised forces back in WW2. Makes no sense to fight as a division if you're motorised. Convoy length (duration of pass) alone should prove that.
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Old 05-02-2012   #8
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Default I agree with both of you.

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What's the point of having a division structure at all?
The US Army has fought at Brigade level in every war except the North African desert in WW II, Desert Storm and aspects of the initial move into Iraq -- again in the desert; only terrain where a Division makes any sense at all...

However, keeping the Division around is the only way to justify a slew of Major Generals.
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Old 05-02-2012   #9
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I doubt that handful of brigades can make a difference. There are hundreds of 1-4 star generals, but less than a dozen active force divisions.

Sure, every army is a bureaucracy first, and Niiskanen's bureaucrat model isn't far off. Nevertheless, 60+ year old lessons should have an impact on an organisation.

This is particularly frustrating to me because the Heer 2011 structure is almost as stupid (and in part more confusing) than the previous German army structure.
Nobody seems to take "battle" (as opposed to small unit skirmishes being called "battles") serious as an influence on army structure design any more these days.
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Old 05-03-2012   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken White View Post
The US Army has fought at Brigade level in every war except the North African desert in WW II, Desert Storm and aspects of the initial move into Iraq -- again in the desert; only terrain where a Division makes any sense at all...

However, keeping the Division around is the only way to justify a slew of Major Generals.
How do you feel about MacGregors proposal to have brigades commnded by a BG? Would this help them have greater independence and less need for the old division structure?
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This truly is the bike helmet generation.
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Old 05-03-2012   #11
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Default Might help with the independence aspect.

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How do you feel about MacGregors proposal to have brigades commnded by a BG? Would this help them have greater independence and less need for the old division structure?
Though a good part of the actual need for the Division is the CSS package and other support concerns, old habits die hard. That aspect of organizing and equipping hasn't been addressed, partly, I believe, to justify retaining the Division for those two button spaces...

The Army has too many General Officers and yet it wants more for several reasons, good and bad. It would be better off IMO with fewer but that would be bureaucratically harmful and the bureaucracy, rightly or wrongly, is here to stay.

All things considered, the competence of the Bde Cdr should be the issue, not his rank.
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Old 05-03-2012   #12
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I've also heard calls for majors as Coy leaders. I don't get it - where are those future majors supposed to reach the experience majors have now if they didn't serve as Coy leaders during their time as Captain?



Calls for this or that rank make rational sense only in alliance politics; you might have a major who's qualified to lead a fighter wing as was normal during WW2, but once he goes to a NATO HQ he's going to be considered a mere major while the other guy from another country with rank Colonel and the same qualification will be considered to be his better until proven otherwise.
This is, I suspect, quite rampant in regard to stars-counting. Some alliance tickets have 2, 3 or 4 star requirements IIRC.


At least a part of the rank inflation among high ranks is attributable to the multinational cooperation in my opinion.

Down at the very lowest ranks it's more about recruitment and sticky pay rates that require a higher rank for compensation competitiveness with the civilian market.

Somewhere in between (approx ranks Captain to LtCol) the rank inflation appears to be driven by too much automatic promotion and too big staffs.


The actual formation command tickets are so few that I doubt they have any substantial impact on rank inflation. The associated staffs are a different story, of course. I do happen to remember that when Rommel was (intentionally) not available for orders by radio (being with his vanguard detachment far ahead) in 1940, his 2nd in command back at division HQ was a mere Major. Staffs appear to function without high ranks, too.
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Old 05-04-2012   #13
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Default development and streaming

Which of these statements and command structures is better arranged to provide a path that requires relevant experience and confirmed ability before promotion into either a command or a staff stream ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by reed11b View Post
How do you feel about MacGregors proposal to have brigades commnded by a BG? Would this help them have greater independence and less need for the old division structure?
(Sub)Unit: OIC/CO, deputy/SNCO plus other

Platoon: LT, SGT

Company: MAJ, CAPT plus CSM and CQMSGT

Battalion: LTCOL, MAJ plus Adjudant (CAPT or MAJ), RSM, QM (CAPT) & IO (LT or CAPT)

Battalion group: COL, LTCOL plus etc

Brigade: BRIG, COL plus etc

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Originally Posted by Fuchs View Post
I've also heard calls for majors as Coy leaders. I don't get it - where are those future majors supposed to reach the experience majors have now if they didn't serve as Coy leaders during their time as Captain?
(Sub)Unit: OIC/CO, XO plus/or SNCO

Platoon: LT, SGT

Company: CAPT, LT plus CSM and CQMSGT

Battalion: LTCOL, plus XO (MAJ or CAPT), RSM, QM (CAPT?) and IO (LT?)

Battalion group: as for battalion

Brigade: COL, LTCOL plus etc
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Old 05-05-2012   #14
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I'm not sure the military bureaucracy will solve the old Peter principle problem. It's not so easy to detect duds without giving them a chance to fail.


How about instead taking competitive sports as an example?

The German football league system has multiple leagues. Every year the best clubs get promoted to the next leagues and the worst ones get demoted to the lesser league. Football is also the only representative of hire & fire in Germany, at least in regard to trainers. A football team plays more than 30 compulsive matches a year, often much more because of additional tournaments, friendly matches etc.

Now imagine our armies would turn into free play exercise societies in which units and formations get pitched against each other all the time. 1on1, 2on1, 2on2, 3on2, similar/dissimilar, varied terrain.

Soldiers would be away from home almost half the time, so armies would need to look at another sector on how to compensate; oil rigs or the navy, where men are away for a long time and then back home for a long time, rinse and repeat. Add in some distance learning for the free time when soldiers are with their family.

The leaders who were promoted beyond the limit of their capabilities would be identified within months, and their superiors - intent on proving themselves in the same competitive environment - would replace them with more promising alternatives (our football leagues have two transfer periods per year for players, but trainers can be replaced any time).



Then again we all know an army is a bureaucracy, and army sport #1 is everywhere to game the system, whatever system that is. I know some hilarious stories from first-hand experience...
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Old 11-19-2012   #15
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Default chieftain types and circumstances

The knowledge, skills and traits of a military officer are the main determinants of how well such a ‘chieftain’ manages to command and direct a military unit and improve and conserve the resources of that unit and its personnel. A few seem to achieve well in most conflict and ‘peacetime’ circumstances. Many do less well but perform to a standard that is acceptable to whomever determines an officer’s fitness to continue in a given role. Still others may be better removed especially when the nature of a role undergoes substantial or rapid change.

It is difficult for any person to do well in all situations. History provides numerous instances in which charisma has been an exemplifier of successful leadership during an emergency or time of change. And probably just as many instances where a charismatic has overreached or otherwise failed during a more pedestrian period. The same applies for many other qualities and descriptors. Excluding dismissal due to failure, the corporate world provides everyday instances where the CEO or chair of a board is changed in preparation for or following a substantial change of policy or direction.

In the current era the military is routinely employed in non-military activities such as domestic and external emergency relief and humanitarian assistance. Put that together with man-management, training and exercise for conflict and the role of an officer is varied and complex. But a different set of complexities or at least changes in emphasis can develop rapidly. That applies especially when ‘peacetime’ activities change to involvement in a small or large armed conflict. And complexity can anyway increase substantially when superiors use modern communications technology to inject specific views and requirements in almost real-time.

Using gridiron as a model, the typical military establishment might obtain some benefit by developing a special teams or special players response to satisfy change of emphasis and change of role. But such deliberate preparation for contingencies would possibly be too testing and also corrosive of morale.

However, there are several distinctly different types of officer who may need to be otherwise juxtaposed or relegated during changing or challenging times. It might seem easy to briefly describe each of those officer types by using the richly nuanced nouns and adjectives available in English. For example, using the term ‘consensus seeker’ rather than the terse and more critical ‘equivocator’. Nonetheless there are too many shades of grey. So to avoid equivocation it seems preferable that each decriptor consist of a single word.

The spectrum for officers - as commanders/decision-makers rather than as a staff functionary - might be reduced to several types such as ‘ taskmaster, leader, politican, tutor, equivocator ’.

Using those or other single word descriptors, what is the main chiefly attribute needed by a Lieutenant, and separately by a Captain, and separately again by a Major in conflict circumstances ? And what single word descriptor would be appropriate for each of the other ranks up to Lieutenant General ?

Similarly what is the main chiefly attribute needed for each rank from Lieutenant to Lieutenant General in ‘peacetime‘ circumstances ?
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Old 11-19-2012   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuchs View Post
I'm not sure the military bureaucracy will solve the old Peter principle problem. It's not so easy to detect duds without giving them a chance to fail.


How about instead taking competitive sports as an example?

The German football league system has multiple leagues. Every year the best clubs get promoted to the next leagues and the worst ones get demoted to the lesser league. Football is also the only representative of hire & fire in Germany, at least in regard to trainers. A football team plays more than 30 compulsive matches a year, often much more because of additional tournaments, friendly matches etc.

Now imagine our armies would turn into free play exercise societies in which units and formations get pitched against each other all the time. 1on1, 2on1, 2on2, 3on2, similar/dissimilar, varied terrain.
A nice by-product would be TV live broadcast of the exercises on a special TV channel, this gives an army that makes money and would attract much more volunteers. :-)
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