Lines of Communication Security in the Contemporary Operational Environment
Author(s)Jacobsen, Gregory K.
Contributor(s)ARMY COMMAND AND GENERAL STAFF COLL FORT LEAVENWORTH KS SCHOOL OF ADVANCED MILITARY STUDIES
KeywordsHumanities and History
Logistics, Military Facilities and Supplies
Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics
THEATER LEVEL OPERATIONS
BRIGADE LEVEL ORGANIZATIONS
JOINT MILITARY ACTIVITIES
*LOC(LINES OF COMMUNICATION)
*IRAQI FREEDOM OPERATION
COE(CONTEMPORARY OPERATING ENVIRONMENT)
ASV(ARMORED SECURITY VEHICLES)
COMBAT SERVICE SUPPORT
BCT(BRIGADE COMBAT TEAMS)
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AbstractThe importance of securing lines of communication (LOC) during warfare has been recognized since the time of Sun Tzu and Thucydides. An Army in the field must be consistently resupplied if it is to function effectively. Despite the importance of LOC security, doctrine provides very little guidance for commanders and planners in this area. Many critical lessons concerning LOC security were learned during the Vietnam War; these lessons are being relearned today in Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF). This monograph examines current LOC security doctrine and the execution of LOC security during the Vietnam War and OIF. The author asserts that the Army is relearning lessons from Vietnam concerning LOC security at the operational level. The Vietnam War and now OIF have both presented some uncommon yet very similar challenges in this respect. The author will explore both of these conflicts to gain a better understanding of insights and knowledge gained concerning LOC security to prevent these lessons from being learned a third time. The research focuses primarily on ground LOC security from port to major logistics bases in a theater of operations or joint operations area. The monograph concludes by recommending the addition of Armored Security Vehicle (ASV) equipped units to every Brigade Combat Team. One of the primary missions assigned these units should be LOC security and convoy escort. It also recommends the creation of a separate field manual for theater-sustaining operations security to fill the current doctrinal void. Finally, to assist in planning for LOC security, the areas of communication, convoy security, regional response forces, and route clearance and maintenance should always be considered.
The original document contains color images.
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