Army’s new operations manual turns attention to stabilizing nations
Stars and Stripes
WASHINGTON — The Army has drafted a new operations manual that elevates the mission of stabilizing war-torn nations, making it equal in importance to defeating battlefield adversaries, according to a report in Friday editions of The New York Times.
According to the Times, officials described the first new edition of the Army’s comprehensive doctrine since 2001 as a major development that draws on the lessons of Iraq and Afghanistan, where initial military successes gave way to long struggles to establish control.
But some influential officers have raised tough questions about whether the Army’s military structure, personnel policies and weapons programs are consistent with its doctrine.
The manual describes the United States as facing an era of “persistent conflict” in which the military will often operate among civilians in countries where local institutions are fragile and efforts to win over a wary population are vital, the Times wrote.
Lt. Gen. William Caldwell, the commander of the Army’s Combined Arms Center at Fort Leavenworth, Kan., began briefing lawmakers on the document Thursday. In an interview with the Times, he called it a “blueprint to operate over the next 10 to 15 years.”
“Winning battles and engagements is important but alone is not sufficient. Shaping the civil situation is just as important to success,” the Times writes, offering a passage.
The new manual is expected to be formally unveiled this month.