Research Report


Yves J. Fontaine
Paul T. Hengst
Barbara A. Jezior
William T. Lasher
Gary J. Motsek
Arthur J. Sosa
Billy E. Wells
Edited by Douglas V. Johnson
Copyright Date: Apr. 6, 1998
Pages: 167
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Table of Contents

  1. (pp. v-v)

    This compendium of student papers is the first in an annual series generated by the U.S. Army War College Special Program, the Army After Next Seminar. This seminar is a continuing research effort involving students, staff, and faculty that attempts to wrestle with the nature of military power 30 years into the future. This is a difficult task with no known “Right” or “Wrong” markers. Michael Howard, in his seminal article, “Military Science in an Age of Peace,” tells us that the task of the professional soldier in time of peace is to try to figure out the future in...

  2. (pp. 1-36)
    Billy E. Wells Jr.

    The thesis of this paper is that highly mobile infantry forces combined with increasingly lethal artillery and aviation will be the dominant land combat force of the future. This will occur as the geopolitical environment evolves a new set of conditions requiring capabilities traditionally associated with infantry. At the same time, domestic requirements will continue to shape the direction of national strategy and force structure, focusing on lighter, more economical dual use technologies and forces. As technological developments create the requirement and the capability for a dispersed and expanded battlefield, mobility requirements will expand the roles of aviation due to...

  3. (pp. 37-51)
    Barbara A. Jezior

    At the end of the 20th century the military decisionmakers made some very astute choices. They realized a land force would still be needed in 2025, but also knew the politics and budget realities of the day meant a small force was all they could realistically plan for. They reasoned that, if it had to be small, it had to be elite. Simultaneously, the technological advances in command, control, communications, computers, and intelligence (C4I) of the time were forcing radical changes in warfighting doctrine. This future force would be fighting a war of maneuver, not attrition, and one of the...

  4. (pp. 53-73)
    Arthur J. Sosa

    The concept of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) began with the appearance of target drones in the 1940s. Shortly thereafter, a veil of secrecy fell overUAVresearch, and their operational capabilities were developed covertly. Nearly 50 years later, during Operation DESERT STORM, UAVs came to the attention of the general public through extensive war reporting, highlighted by reports of Iraqi soldiers with arms held high, attempting to surrender to a circling UAV. The Gulf War became the latest proving ground to evaluate UAV capabilities in combat and their potential role on the modern battlefield.

    My experiences as an Army Attack Helicopter Company...

  5. (pp. 75-92)
    Yves J. Fontaine

    In every overseas deployment since the Spanish-American War, the responsiveness of the logistics system was degraded by lack of information concerning personnel, equipment, and requisitions status. Moreover, an enormous amount of materiel was shipped to the theater, but was not readily available because of this poor information, which in turn reduced the combat forces’ ability to accomplish their mission. This paper analyzes the strategic logistics systems of recent force projection operations covering the entire spectrum of war, to include Operations DESERT SHIELD/DESERT STORM, RESTORE HOPE, SUPPORT HOPE, and JOINT ENDEAVOR. It identifies problems with tracking the status of supplies, building...

  6. (pp. 93-110)
    Gary J. Motsek

    Captain Mike Thomas did a quick check of his info screens. He had just ordered his battle team to disengage from contact with the foe. With dominant battlefield awareness, he knew the Joint Task Force J-3 could keep “eyes” on the enemy and redirect other teams to swarm in and engage them according to the plan. His group of seven mobile assault vehicles (each with a two-man crew operating ground and air defense weapon systems) was in pretty good shape. Nobody killed or injured, the bio-monitors on his people showed him that. Fuel and ammunition, according to the readouts, were...

  7. (pp. 111-133)
    Paul T. Hengst

    Information superiority will be key to the Army After Next (AAN).¹ To achieve this superiority, the AAN will rely on information networks. These networks will be combined to form “a single grid so powerful and intelligent that it will be able to provide common situational awareness to friendly forces, real-time intelligence on enemy forces and fire control.”² This intelligent information grid (I2G) will be capable of connecting the multitude of sensors and information systems together into a seamless information environment.

    Decreases in Department of Defense (DoD) funding and manpower are driving planners to develop a grid that will operate in...

  8. (pp. 135-154)
    William T. Lasher

    Success of the Army After Next (AAN) will be heavily dependent on our ability to manage information adeptly. Army Vision 2010 calls for us to “gain information dominance . . . to create a disparity between what we know about our battlespace . . . and what the enemy knows about his.”¹ Joint Vision 2010 foresees:

    increased access to information and improvements in the speed and accuracy of prioritizing and transferring data brought about by advances in technology of old. We must have information superiority: the capability to collect, process, and disseminate an uninterrupted flow of information while exploiting or...