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New guidance from Fort Leavenworth on how to fight, survive in Iraq


Welcome to Military Matters.This is a new news blog that will track coverage of military activities in northeast Kansas - how Kansans are affected by the presence of the bases here, and how ideas and units developed here affect the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. We'll also focus on news about the Kansas National Guard, which has surely pulled its weight in those conflicts.Here are the most recent Kansas military headlines:Fort Leavenworth[(Army Times) Handbook gives tips on first 100 days in Iraq:][1] Beginning in January, soldiers in basic training will be issued handbooks on how to survive their first 100 days in Iraq. The handbook, whose working title is "Soldier Handbook: Surviving Iraq," will be based on more than 1,700 interviews conducted during the month of August with captains, lieutenants and soldiers in the ranks of staff sergeant and below. ... "There's no doubt that the early part of the deployment is the most dangerous, when people are understanding their environment," said Col. Steven Mains, director of CALL at Fort Leavenworth, Kan., which designed and undertook the survey.[(AP) Army-Marine doctrine retools way U.S. fights beyond Iraq:][2] Army officials say a new counterinsurgency doctrine should make soldiers and Marines better prepared to fight an atypical enemy but shouldn't be viewed as a roadmap for getting out of Iraq. Two years in the making, it is the military's first major effort to combine chapters on low-intensity conflict, guerrilla warfare and counterinsurgencies contained in numerous documents from the past quarter century. Written for battalion and division commanders, the manual discusses the tone and scope of counterinsurgencies, emphasizing a need to see operations as fighting a "three-block war." Additional documents outlining tactics, techniques and procedures will be produced. "This isn't the silver bullet," said Col. Steve Boylan, spokesman for the Combined Arms Center at Fort Leavenworth, where the manual is being produced. [(AP) Highlights of new counterinsurgency doctrine for Army, Marines][3][(Christian Science Monitor) What the US has learned (so far) in Iraq:][4] The US military, for its part, has been examining lessons learned in Iraq about tactics and operations for some time. This fall, the Army published a new field manu-al for counterinsurgency operations that draws extensively on research conducted from returning Iraq veterans. Among its conclusions: The best counterinsurgency weapons do not shoot. Tactics that work this week might not work next week. The more force protection you use, the less effective you are. Sometimes doing nothing is the best reaction. The most important decisions are not made by generals. "Clearly, there has to be much more specific preparation for these very challenging counterinsurgency operations," said Lt. Gen. David Petraeus, commander of the Army Combined Arms Center and Fort Leavenworth in Kansas, at a recent Brookings Institution seminar on military training.[(Boston Globe) Iraq's hard truths shape general's new battle plan:][5] The new doctrine is part of a sweeping rethink of Iraq strategy underway for some time and accelerated since Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld's resignation. General Peter Pace, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, has pulled together 12 top military officers to reexamine and, where necessary, change strategy. But Petraeus's suggestions may also come too late, some critics contend, for a war that has already ground on for nearly four years. "It's admirable and overdue," said Andrew J. Bacevich, a West Point graduate and Vietnam War veteran who is now director of the Center for International Relations at Boston University. "But it's too late to have an effect in Iraq." Petraeus doesn't accept that. Earlier this month, he sat at his desk at Fort Leavenworth still penciling in final changes to the document that he drafted with his coauthor, Marine Lieutenant General James Mattis, and other officers and advisers.Fort Riley[(CBS) Training Americans To Train Iraqis:][6] Fort Riley in Kansas is ground zero for America's new approach in Iraq: Train American forces to train Iraqi soldiers to defend their own nation. The 11-man teams at Fort Riley will embed with 500-man Iraq units, CBS News national correspondent Byron Pitts reports. That means they eat, sleep, instruct and, when necessary, fight along side Iraq's new army. "Those security forces truly are at today's tip of the spear," says Maj. Gen. Carter Ham. General Ham says that unlike the military advisers scattered across Iraq in years past, these troops receive 60 days of specialized training in linguistics, culture and counter-insurgency. But, he adds, those 60 days aren't enough. "We couldn't get it all done if you gave me a year," he says. Still, the Army needs them ASAP as sectarian violence rages on in Iraq. [1]: http://www.armytimes.com/story.php?f=1-292925-2406015.php [2]: http://www.kansas.com/mld/kansas/news/state/16178663.htm [3]: http://www.belleville.com/mld/belleville/news/state/16180128.htm [4]: http://www.csmonitor.com/2006/1204/p01s01-usfp.html/ [5]: http://www.boston.com/news/world/articles/2006/11/29/iraqs_hard_truths_shape_generals_new_battle_plan/ [6]: http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2006/12/06/eveningnews/main2235597.shtml


compmd 10 years, 11 months ago

there is an awful lot of military activity in kansas. I'm glad the ljw is compiling and reporting on this because the average person probably wouldn't be aware of it. I wonder if I will see my friends from the 184th and 190th ARW, ANG in here anytime.

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