This posting is based on the article “Doctrine at the Speed of War: A 21st Century Paradigm for Army Knowledge,” found in the March edition of the Army Magazine.
Our Army is truly at an historical inflection point. The war in Iraq has ended and we continue to work ourselves out of a job in Afghanistan. While we reposition from a decade at war, however, we must ensure that we capture the lessons that we have learned and focus them on the years ahead. In other words, we must leverage our past to prepare for the future by quickly developing and disseminating our doctrine.
To capitalize on this opportunity and revolutionize the way we develop and share our doctrine we are in the process of restructuring our body of knowledge and identify the principles critical to our Army as the Nation’s land force of decisive action. This “Doctrine 2015” initiative will create documents that are more concise, accessible, and current – this means fewer manuals, shorter in length, and tied to technology to make them more accessible to our Soldiers.
The new Army doctrine structure incorporates five levels, including:
• Army Doctrine Publications (ADPs), which are the 15 foundational manuals that capture the enduring principles inherent to land warfare in the 21st century
• Army Doctrine Reference Publications (ADRPs) which will provide our Soldiers with more detailed information on each of the topics covered in the ADP
• Field Manuals (FM) that codifies time-tested tactics and procedures and fully explains the most current ones used in the field
• Army Technique Publications (ATPs) capture the rapidly changing techniques developed in the field and at training centers. These are on a MilWiki site and can be accessed and added to by anyone in the force, whether deployed or training at home station
The first manual we put through this new process was ADP 3-0, Unified Land Operations. This publication is the central unifying concept of the Army and will drive the development of every other aspect of Doctrine 2015. More recently, we have developed the capstone leadership manual, ADP 6-22, Army Leadership. Simultaneously, the ADRPs and FMs that undergird these are developed.
The restructuring of our doctrine and the development of a solid unifying operational concept is establishing a foundation for training, education, and equipment that will influence our Army for decades to come. By doing this we are improving our Soldiers’ and leaders’ understanding of current doctrine through increased accessibility and more current link to today’s operational environment. Our force has been operating at the speed of war for a decade – it’s time our doctrine caught up.
Prepare for War – Victory!