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The U.S. Army Professional Writing Collection draws from a variety of professional journals that focus on relevant issues affecting The Army. The views expressed are those of the author and do not represent the official position of the Army. This micro-site seeks to stimulate innovative thinking about the challenges that may face tomorrow's Army. It is further intended that the articles featured on this site cause reflection, increased dialogue within the Army Community, and in the best case, action by Soldiers. Updated monthly, these articles are written by Soldiers, civilians, academics, and other subject matter experts. Links to various Army publications, Department of Defense journals and selected non-governmental defense-related publications are also provided on this site.

Al Qaeda as Insurgency

Marketing: An Overlooked Aspect of Information OperationsThe National Strategy for Homeland Security designates al Qaeda as “America’s most immediate and serious threat.” Conventional wisdom, reflected in news media, public opinion, and government studies such as the National Strategy for Combating Terrorism, characterizes the al Qaeda menace as one of transnational terrorism. Recently, however, some analysts have begun to challenge that conclusion. They argue that al Qaeda represents a new type of insurgency. Assessing the nature of the enemy is a critical first step in crafting effective strategy. It is suggested that al Qaeda represents an emerging form of global Islamic insurgency, the inchoate strategy of which undermines its potential to achieve its revolutionary goals. Nonetheless, not unlike previous failed insurgencies, it possesses both durability and an immense capacity for destruction. These characteristics mandate a counterrevolutionary response at the strategic level that aims not only to destroy the organization but also to discredit its ideological underpinnings.

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Reshaping The Expeditionary Army To Win Decisively: The Case For Greater Stabilization Capacity In The Modular Force

Winning the Peace The Requirement for Full-Spectrum OperationsRecognition that future armed con(ct on land will likely involve stabilization operations from the very outset of combat operations through con(ct resolution must guide Army transformation. The emphasis on achieving enduring results extends military campaign objectives beyond con(ct termination, to include setting the conditions for con(ct resolution. This fundamentally redenes the scope of an expeditionary land force and demands it broaden its core capabilities. Future victory depends on a land force equally adept in prosecuting “rapid decisive operations” as conducting progressive stabilization to mitigate the effects of combat and bridge the gap to reconstruction. The modular force provides an adequate mental framework to drive organizational designs. But the current direction of the modular force misses the mark. Its myopic vision of an expeditionary force connes Army transformation to new ways of fullling a traditional role that ends with con(ct termination. As a result, the Army is expending tremendous resources reinventing its former self rather than fully responding to the challenges of future warfare. Future success requires an Army whose view of land warfare and an expeditionary force structure includes the concept of progressive stabilization and a new balance of combat and stabilization capabilities.


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"Everybody Wanted Tanks": Heavy Forces in Operation Iraqi Freedom

The Origins of al Qaeda's Ideology: Implications for U.S. StrategyWarfare is evolving rapidly in the computer age, especially in sensing technology, precision guidance, and control of forces. Heavy forces, such as tanks, benefit from these advances while continuing to offer the advantage of survivability. They were developed during World War I to solve the problem of crossing terrain swept by enemy fire. Ninety years later, they still solve this problem despite a wide range of efforts to make them obsolete. It should be no surprise that heavy forces are useful in conventional combat. In Iraq, heavy forces have also proven just as useful in combat against irregular forces employing swarming tactics, even in urban terrain. They were the key to a rapid victory over the Ba’thist regime that saved the lives of not only coalition forces but also Iraqi civilians. As transformation plans are refined, it is likely that heavy forces will retain an important role.


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Growing the Iraqi Security Forces

Ultramicro, Nonlethal, and Reversible: Looking Ahead to Military BiotechnologyPolitical leaders in America and military leaders in Iraq have repeatedly emphasized the importance of building up Iraqi security forces as a foundation for the rule of law, economic progress, and political stability. Underlying the strategy is the ancient proverb “Give a man a sh, and you feed him for a day; teach a man to sh, and you feed him for a lifetime.” Arming a democratic Iraq with the internal and external security to defend itself will be a political victory that will allow the United States to withdraw from operations. Military units across the Iraqi theater have spent a tremendous amount of energy and resources to help produce an Iraqi National Guard, civic and border police, and special operations and regular army units. Much remains to be done, but the U.S. Army has laid a solid foundation for democracy despite the persistent barbs of a stubborn insurgency.


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