There Are Other Lessons from Iraqi Freedom

Vandroff, Mark
August 2003
U.S. Naval Institute Proceedings;Aug2003, Vol. 129 Issue 8, p71
Conference Proceeding
Operation Iraqi Freedom likely will be remembered as one of the most successful military engagements in U.S. history. A potentially powerful foe was devastated in less than a month, with minimal coalition fatalities. Operational planners will study Iraqi Freedom to learn its lessons and apply them to future conflicts. There are others who could benefit as well. In particular, the acquisition community could learn that having a backup plan is not wasteful duplication. Early in the war, Army General Tommy Franks took criticism from the press that the "shock and awe" air campaign had not produced a swift surrender. The ground campaign that commenced alongside it, however, eventually achieved coalition goals. By prematurely removing the close-in weapon systems, the U.S. Navy bet on the "shock and awe" of the Evolved Sea Sparrow missile without having the tried-and-true "ground war" of the Phalanx system as a backup. Just because one does not see movement where one is, one should not assume nothing useful is happening. Today, some who do not see steel being fabricated into ships or aircraft assume the process is broken and in need of drastic intervention. Just as aerial preparation and logistics are hidden yet vital pieces of maneuver warfare, so are design, manufacturing development, contracting, and program management vital pieces of successful acquisition. It took six months of military build up and diplomatic pressure to position forces to be ready to strike Iraq. Once ready, combat operations were conducted with near blinding speed. Acquisition should work the same way.


Related Articles

  • Numbers from Operation Iraqi Freedom2003.  // All Hands;Jan2004, Issue 1041, p11 

    Presents data on the power projection of the U.S. Navy for the Iraq war.

  • We Have More to Learn from Iraqi Freedom. MacKercher, John C. // U.S. Naval Institute Proceedings;Aug2004, Vol. 130 Issue 8, p74 

    The United States Navy's performance in Operation Iraqi Freedom and subsequent actions—in strike warfare, tactical aviation, and maritime interceptions—was highly successful. The author was commanding officer of the San Jacinto during the initial phases of OIF, when all hands had...

  • Caring for the Injured. Ludwig, Charles // All Hands;Aug2003, Issue 1036, p40 

    Focuses on U.S. independent hospital corpsman Sylvia Wasden. Roles and duties of a independent hospital corpsman; Experience being deployed to the Middle East in support of Operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom.

  • Clear The Way. Van Antwerp, R. L. // Engineer;Jul-Sep2003, Vol. 33 Issue 3, p2 

    Introduces a series of articles about aspects of the major combat operations phase of Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2003.

  • Expeditionary Logistics: Dawn of a New Joint Logistics Reality. McMurry, Brian M. // Army Logistician;Sep/Oct2006, Vol. 38 Issue 5, p4 

    The article reports on the accomplishment of 64th Corps Support Group (CSG) during Operation Iraqi Freedom in implementing expeditionary logistics in the U.S. Container delivery system drops to Stryker elements was executed in the 64th CSG. The 64th CSG is at the forefront of expeditionary...

  • Marines Must Train for Threats with No Boundaries. Tsirlis, Christopher // U.S. Naval Institute Proceedings;Aug2004, Vol. 130 Issue 8, p70 

    As a second lieutenant in the operating forces during Operation Iraqi Freedom, the author experienced the remarkable range of challenges a Marine Corps officer likely will face in the coming years. On one end are major combat operations that require every facet of capabilities as an...

  • Deploying to Iraq? Morgan, Daniel // Infantry;Jan/Feb2004, Vol. 93 Issue 1, p28 

    Presents information on several tactics, techniques and procedures for battle operations based on the 2003 war in Iraq. Importance of threat environment to an urban patrol; Patrols for improvised explosive devices; Details of home station training.

  • Effects-Based Operations: A Command Philosophy. Elder Jr., Robert J. // Air & Space Power Journal;Spring2007, Vol. 21 Issue 1, p10 

    The article presents the author's perspective on effects-based operations theory and processes based on his experiences in Operation Iraqi Freedom during major combat operations. According to him, effects-based approach focuses on improving the ability to affect an adversary's capabilities...

  • TTPs For the 60mm Mortar Section. Levy, Jason E. // Infantry;May/Jun2004, Vol. 93 Issue 3, p43 

    Presents an article on the tactics, techniques, and procedures used by the 60mm mortar section in Bravo Company, first battalion, 508th Infantry Airborne during combat operations in Iraq in April 2003. Evaluations of all mortar sections in the battalion; Importance of the involvement of leaders...


Read the Article


Sorry, but this item is not currently available from your library.

Try another library?
Sign out of this library

Other Topics