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Shortchanging the Joint Fight? An Airman's Assessment of FM 3-24 and the Case for Developing Truly Joint COIN Doctrine.

Author: Jr Charles J Dunlap; AIR UNIV MAXWELL AFB AL AIRPOWER RESEARCH INST.
Publisher: Ft. Belvoir : Defense Technical Information Center, 2008.
Edition/Format:   eBook : EnglishView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
Is America's counterinsurgency (COIN) effort being shortchanged? Does a one-dimensional doctrine fail to exploit America's full COIN potential? Would a genuinely joint approach provide better options to decision makers confronted with the harsh realities of 21st century insurgencies? This study insists the answers are unequivocally "yes." It analyzes the pitfalls of accepting Army/Marine tactical doctrine as the  Read more...
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Material Type: Internet resource
Document Type: Internet Resource
All Authors / Contributors: Jr Charles J Dunlap; AIR UNIV MAXWELL AFB AL AIRPOWER RESEARCH INST.
OCLC Number: 318681382
Notes: Monograph.
Description: 125 pages ; 23 x 29 cm

Abstract:

Is America's counterinsurgency (COIN) effort being shortchanged? Does a one-dimensional doctrine fail to exploit America's full COIN potential? Would a genuinely joint approach provide better options to decision makers confronted with the harsh realities of 21st century insurgencies? This study insists the answers are unequivocally "yes." It analyzes the pitfalls of accepting Army/Marine tactical doctrine as the joint solution. It also offers insights and ideas from an Airman's perspective for strengthening joint COIN doctrine development to deliver fresh alternatives to national decision makers and combatant commanders. Of central importance to this assessment is the Army's December 2006 Field Manual (FM) 3-24, "Counterinsurgency" (designated by the Marine Corps as Warfighting Publication 3-33.5). This impressive and influential 282-page document skillfully addresses many difficult COIN issues, but regrettably reflects a one-dimensional, ground-centric perspective almost exclusively, as evidenced by the fact that considerations of airpower are confined to a short, 5-page annex. By failing to reconcile the full potential of today's airpower capabilities and by focusing almost exclusively on the surface dimension, FM 3-24 -- despite its many virtues and remarkable insights -- nevertheless falls short of offering U.S. decision makers a pragmatic, overall solution for the challenge of counterinsurgency. Yet, despite FM 3-24's limitations, it has become viewed as the overall plan for COIN operations in Iraq. Of further concern are reports that FM 3-24 appears poised to become the centerpiece of new joint COIN doctrine whose development has just begun. This paper argues that winning COIN fights requires exploiting the potential of the entire joint team.

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