Gen. McAffrey’s after action report


Here is a snippet of General Barry McAffrey’s report, described as a strategic and operational assessment of the current security operations in Iraq.

THE US ARMY IS TOO SMALL AND POORLY RESOURCED TO CONTINUE SUCCESSFUL COUNTER-INSURGENCY OPERATIONS IN IRAQ AND AFGHANISTAN AT THE CURRENT LEVEL:

An active counter-insurgency campaign in Iraq could probably succeed in the coming decade with twenty-five US Brigade Combat Teams. (Afghanistan probably needs two more US combat brigades for a total of four in the coming 15 year campaign to create an operational state— given more robust NATO Forces and ROE). We can probably sustain a force in Iraq indefinitely (given adequate funding) of some 10+ brigades. However, the US Army is starting to unravel.

Our recruiting campaign is bringing into the Army thousands of new soldiers (perhaps 10% of the annual input) who should not be in uniform. (Criminal records, drug use, moral waivers, non-high school graduates, pregnant from Basic Training and therefore non-deployable, lowest mental category, etc.)

We are losing our combat experienced mid-career NCOs’ and Captains at an excessive rate. (ROTC DMG’s, West Pointers, Officers with engineering and business degrees, etc.) Their morale is high, they are proud of their service, they have enormous personal courage—however, they see a nation of 300 million people with only an under resourced Armed Forces at war. The US Army at 400,000 troops is too small to carry out the current military strategy. The active duty US Army needs to be 800,000 strong to guarantee US national security.

The National Guard and Reserves are too small, are inadequately resourced, their equipment is broken or deployed, they are beginning their second involuntary combat deployments, and they did not sign up to be a regular war-fighting force. They have done a superb job in combat but are now in peril of not being ready for serious homeland security missions or deployment to a major shooting war such as Korea.

The modernization of our high technology US Air Force and Navy is imperiled by inadequate Congressional support. Support has focused primarily on the ground war and homeland security with $400 Billion+. We are digging a strategic hole for the US as we mono-focus on counter-insurgency capabilities —while China inevitably emerges in the coming 15 years as a global military power.

Read it all at Michael Yon’s Online Magazine.

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