This report has been professionally converted for accurate flowing-text e-book format reproduction. Current army doctrine provides a guide for the integration of conventional and special operations forces in combat, but provides little direction to guide the integration of conventional and special operations forces in a peacetime training environment. This monograph seeks to determine if and how the US Army should formalize the integration of conventional forces and special operations forces in training for the complex future. By analyzing instances of integration of conventional and special operations forces in the first two years of Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan, this monograph concludes that peacetime integration in training should be emphasized more, particularly at the combat training centers. Because of the uncertainty inherent in the future operating environment, a formal model for this integration in training could not be developed. Regardless, an increase in integration of conventional and special operations forces in training will inherently provide a common understanding that can be applied to integration in combat.
Contents: 1. Introduction 2. Literature Review 3. Methodology 4. Case Study: Operation Enduring Freedom 5. Findings and Analysis 6. Conclusion
Conventional forces and SOF integration and interoperability is often asserted as a key to maximizing resources to accomplish missions. International relations and complexity theorist Robert Jervis describes this interaction effect in saying that "events that occur close together also can have a different impact than they would if their separate influences were merely summed." He goes on to explain this concept that the whole of a system is different than the sum of its parts. Thinking systemically, CF and SOF integration has the potential to produce greater effects than if CF and SOF operated independently of each other. Despite this, CF and SOF integration is not fully embraced by either the conventional Army or the special operations community. United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) has recently instituted the Global SOF Network (GSN) model, where USSOCOM integrates the US SOF more closely with international and intra-national SOF elements. Meanwhile, the Army has implemented the Regionally Aligned Forces (RAF) concept, where Army conventional brigades develop regionally based expertise and form habitual relationships with Geographic Combatant Commands to aid in conducting theater security cooperation activities. Because of these initiatives, it is evident that SOF and CF will continue to operate in the same locations, toward the same objectives, in combat and non-combat operations in the future. Despite the emergence of the RAF and GSN concepts, and the theoretical ability for the whole of a system to be different than the sum of its parts, the Army has done little to formalize or foster continuous and lasting efforts for integrating special operations and conventional forces.