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At War & Transforming
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The 2003 United States Army Posture Statement

The Army is a profession – the Profession of Arms. Conducting decisive ground combat operations in defense of the United States and its interests is a core competency of this profession. The development of each member of The Army is the foundation of lifelong devotion to duty – while in uniform and upon returning to the civilian sector.

69th Air Defense Artillery Brigade, Giebelstadt Army Airfield, Germany
69th Air Defense Artillery Brigade,
Giebelstadt Army Airfield, Germany

By its nature, our profession is extraordinarily complex and dangerous. The American people entrust The Army with the sacred responsibility to apply lethal force in defense of U.S interests. As such, the Profession of Arms must remain firmly grounded in constitutional values and must constantly change and grow to preserve its competitive advantage in an evolving strategic environment. At all levels, our leaders – military and civilian – must apply their professional knowledge in increasingly varied and unique situations that are characteristic of today’s strategic environment. Ultimately, we must grow professional Army leaders who provide wise and discerning military judgments founded on long experience and proven professional expertise. This capacity is developed only through a lifetime of education and dedicated service – in peace and in war.

Soldiers serve the Nation with the full realization that their duty may require them to make the supreme sacrifice for others among their ranks. Soldiers fighting the war on terrorism today, those who will fight our future wars, and those who have fought in our past wars are professional warfighters and a precious national asset. To ensure we remain the greatest landpower in the world defending the greatest country in the world, The Army and the Nation rely upon their unique and hard-earned experiences and skills. To develop the operational skills required to defend the Nation, training must remain our number one priority.

The evolving strategic environment, the gravity of our responsibilities, and the broad range of tasks The Army performs require us to review and periodically update the way we educate, train, and grow professional warfighters. The Army’s strategic responsibilities to the Nation and Combatant Commanders now embrace a wider range of missions. Those missions present our leaders with even greater challenges than previously experienced. Therefore, leader development is the lifeblood of the profession. It is the deliberate, progressive, and continuous process that trains and grows Soldiers and civilians into competent, confident, self-aware, and decisive leaders prepared for the challenges of the 21st Century in combined arms, joint, multinational, and interagency operations.

In June 2000, we convened the Army Training and Leader Development Panel (ATLDP). The ATLDP’s purpose is to identify skill sets required of Objective Force Soldier and civilian leaders. Further, ATLDP assesses the ability of current training and leader development systems and policies to enhance these required skills. In May 2001, The Army Training and Leader Development Panel Phase I (Officer Study) identified seven strategic imperatives and generated 89 recommendations. With those, we validated the requirement to transform our Officer Education System (OES) – from the Officer Basic Course through the Command and General Staff Officer Course. Additionally, the panel reconfirmed the value of Joint Professional Military Education II (JPME II) in preparing our leaders for joint assignments. The most significant product of the officer ATLDP is our OES Transformation.

ATLDP Phase I (Officer Study) identified three high-payoff institutional training and education initiatives for lieutenants, captains, and majors. The first of these is the Basic Officer Leader Course (BOLC). BOLC will provide a tough, standardized, graduate-level, small-unit leadership experience for newly commissioned officers. The second of these initiatives is the Combined Arms Staff Course (CASC) for staff officers, and the Combined Arms Battle Command Course (CABCC) for company commanders. Both courses will capitalize on advanced distributed learning and intensive resident training methods. The third initiative, Intermediate Level Education (ILE), will provide all majors with the same common core of operational instruction, and it will provide additional educational opportunities that are tailored to the officer’s specific career field, branch, or functional area. Beyond ILE, Army officers continue to attend Joint or Senior Service Colleges to develop leader skills and knowledge appropriate to the operational and strategic levels of the profession.

Completed in May 2002, the ATLDP Phase II (NCO Study) resulted in 78 findings and recommendations extending across six imperatives – Army culture, NCO Education Systems (NCOES), training, systems approach to training, training and leader development model, and lifelong learning. Among others, the ATLDP Phase II recommended building new training and leader development tools for NCOs to replace current methods, as required. The ATLDP Phase III (Warrant Officer Study) culminated with 63 recommendations extending across four crucial imperatives. Recommendations included clarifying the warrant officer’s unique role in The Army and improving the Warrant Officer Education System (WOES) to ensure timely training and promotion. The Civilian Training and Leader Development Panel (Phase IV) study results are complete, and we are forming the Implementation Process Action Team (I-PAT). I-PAT will identify actions The Army must take to increase the professional development of our civilian workforce. At the senior leader level, The Army initiated the Army Strategic Leadership Course (ASLC). The program is aimed at teaching principles of strategic leadership, with emphasis on visioning, campaign planning, leading change, and Transformation. To date, we have completed twelve of the foundation courses and three alumni courses, training the majority of The Army’s general officers.


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