By OCPA/ARCICOctober 15, 2009
Comprehensive Lessons Learned
What is it'
A new publication summarizing key lessons learned from more than seven years of war in Iraq and Afghanistan that underpin capabilities development and integration. A lesson is knowledge or understanding gained by experience; it is learned when this understanding is put into action. The Comprehensive Lessons Learned includes insights from the Operating and Generating forces. Each lesson learned is significant, valid, applicable and describes a problem or issue that the Army may leverage for successful change.
What is the Army doing'
The Army has acted on each of the Comprehensive Lessons Learned, however, some still require more action. Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC) is spearheading this effort. This conflict is a competitive learning battle against adaptive adversaries who fight by their own rules among the local population. The environment drives the Army to continuously adapt in order to succeed. In warfare, the side that learns faster and adapts more rapidly-the better learning organization-usually wins.
These key insights will shape our nation's perspective, strategic direction and necessary improvements to the Operating Force and Generating Force. During this era of persistent conflict, several information sources provide relevant and competing insights the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and operations by other land forces. We must be cognizant of the wide variety of sources, recognize divergent perspectives and assess the numerous strategic, policy, programmatic, acquisition, operational, tactical and analytical inputs that could inform and influence our decisions. Lessons learned that we accept must be based on facts.
Why is this important to the Army'
No military can remain stagnant and expect to prevail on today's battlefield. The United States Army is a learning institution. The active solicitation and validation of lessons learned directly affects our Army's ability to adapt and succeed. The Comprehensive Lessons Learned helps strengthen our units with the latest materiel and non-materiel solutions to meet operating environment challenges. Further, the fact-based approach to lessons learned helps implement the highest payoff actions while minimizing the likelihood that our Army will learn the wrong lessons.
What does the Army have planned for the future'
TRADOC will assess and codify lessons learned from the Army and other sources for an annual publication of Comprehensive Lessons Learned. TRADOC will remain diligent to compile, assess, determine and validate key lessons that will drive the development and integration of new Army capabilities.
TRADOC Web site