Successfully reported this slideshow.
We use your LinkedIn profile and activity data to personalize ads and to show you more relevant ads. You can change your ad preferences anytime.

Fires bulletin fort sill_cat c_janfeb2011_pubentry


Published on

Published in: News & Politics
  • Be the first to comment

Fires bulletin fort sill_cat c_janfeb2011_pubentry

  1. 1. A Joint January-February 2011 Professional Bulletin for U.S. Field and Air Defense Artillerymen u l l e t i n / w w w. f a c e b o o k . c o m / f i res b u l l e t i n of FiresCommemorative EditionApproved for public release; distribution is unlimited. • Headquarters, Department of the Army • PB644-11-1
  2. 2. ContentsJanuary-February 2011 100 Years of Fires; Fires Bulletin- 100 Operational culture years of service to the professional FiresPage 4 Excellence Culture a Soldier By MG David D. Halverson the standard for the By Dr. Mahir J. Ibrahimov Status of the US Field Artillery AssociationPage 6 and US Air Defense Artillery Association History of the US Army Field ArtilleryPage 7 School from birth to the eve of World War II: Part I of II By Dr. Boyd L. Dastrup Air Defense Artillery contributions,Page 11 solutions and issues during World War I By David A. Christensen New artillery school will serve as the Fires foundation for the professionalism ofPage 13 Afghan National Army By LTC Charles D. Kirby, U.S. Army, and LTC Richard Vagg, Royal Volum Australian ArtilleryPage 16 Keeping it real: Don’t let Joint Fires Observer skills deteriorate By MSG Timothy RyanPage 19 Employing joint Fires in Afghanistan By LTC John C. AllredPage 30 Bouncing Back: How are we building resilient Soldiers and units? By COL (Ret) Joyce DiMarco and LTC (Ret) Richard McConnell Millennials and transformational leaders: A winning team for thePage 38 future — Part II of II By COL James E. Lackey, Professor Gene Kamena and COL Paul Calvert2Headquarters, Department of the Army •Fires January-February 2011 • PB644-11-1
  3. 3. DISCLAIMER: Fires, a professional bulletin, is published bimonthly by Headquarters, Department of the Army under the auspices of the Fires Center of Excellence (Building 758, McNair Road), Fort Sill, Okla. The views expressed are those of the authors and not the Department of Defense or its elements. Fires’ content doesn’t necessarily reflect the U.S. Army’s position or supersede information in other official Army publications. Use of news items constitutes neither affirmation of their accuracy nor product endorse- ments. Fires is printed by Monarch Litho Inc., a private in the US Army: The Fires Center of firm in no way connected with the Department of the Army. Fires assumes no responsibility for any unsolicited material. By Order of the Secretary of the Army: and Foreign Language Strategy sets George W. Casey Jr. General, United States Army Chief of Staffe rest of TRADOC, Army Official: Joyce E. Morrow Administrative Assistant to the Secretary of the Army, 1029202 David D. Halverson Major General, United States Army Commanding General Fort Sill, Okla. Editor-in-Chief: Sharon McBride Managing Editor: Jennifer McFadden Art Director: Jason Kelly Assistant Editor: Paul Jiron PURPOSE: Founded in 2007, Fires serves as a forum for the professional discussions of U.S. Army and Marine Field Artillery (FA) and Army Air Defense Artillery (ADA) professionals, both active and Reserve Component (RC); disseminates professional knowledge about the FA’s and ADA’s progress, developments and best use in cam- Page 22 paigns; cultivates a common understanding of the power, limitations and application of joint Fires, both lethal and nonlethal; fosters joint Fires interdependency among the armed services; and promotes the understanding of and interoperability between the FA’s and ADA’s active and RC units—all of which contribute to the good of the FA and ADA, Army, joint and combined forces, and our nation. OFFICIAL DISTRIBUTION: Free copies are sent to USA and USMC FA units: FA/Fires brigade, brigade combat team (BCT), Stryker cavalry regiment (SCR), FA Marine regiment and battlefield coordination detachment (BCD) Number 1. headquarters; 13 per FA/Fires battalion/squadron; 3 per fire support element (FSE), Fires and effects cell (FEC), effects coordination cell (ECC) fire support cell (FSC), andme I. separate battery or detachment; 2 per fire support team (FIST); and 1 per Master Gunner. Free copies to Army ADA units: 7 per air and missile defense command (AAMDC) THE and ADA brigade headquarters; 13 per ADA battalion; ILLERY and 3 per air defense airspace management cell (ADAM) IELD ART and separate battery or detachment. The FA and ADA F Schools’ departments, directorates and divisions each JOURNAL Back cover get 2 copies. Other Army branch and US armed services units/organizations and US government agencies that work with FA or ADA personnel, equipment, doctrine, tactics, training organization or leadership issues may request a free copy—including, but not limited to—ROTCs, recruiting commands, libraries, attaches, liaison officers, 1911 -MARCH, state adjutants general, public affairs offices, military JANUARY Select articles academies, laboratories, arsenals, major commands, etc. Contact Fires at SUBSCRIPTIONS: Those not eligible for official distribu- SNOW ARMY IN WM. J. CAPTA SIXTH FIEL D ARTILLE RY, UNITED EDITOR ES STAT from The Field tion may subscribe to Fires via the U.S. Superintendent of Documents, P.O. Box 37154, Pittsburgh, PA 15250-7954 (1-866-512-1800). Artillery Journal’s SUBMISSIONS: Email to the Editor, Fires, at firesbul-; mail to P.O. Box 33311, Fort Sill, OK 73503-0311; overnight to Building 758, Room 7, McNair Road, Fort Sill, OK 73503-5600; or call at DSN first edition 639-5121/6806 or commercial (580) 442-5121/6806. REPRINTS: Fires is pleased to grant permission to reprint; please credit Fires, the author(s) and photographers. RLY POSTMASTER: Fires (USPS 309-010) (ISSN 1935-4096) D QUARTE PUBLISHE N is published bimonthly; periodical postage paid by Depart- BY SOCIATIO LLERY AS C. ment of the Army at Lawton, OK 73501 and an additional ELD ARTI STATES FI ., WASHINGTON, D. mailing post office. Send address changes to Fires, P.O. TH E UNITED REET N. W 1744 G ST Box 33311, Fort Sill, OK 73503-0311. ANNUM $4.00 PER • January-February 2011 3
  4. 4. Fires COMMANDING GENERAL’S FORWARD 100 years of Fires Fires Bulletin – 100 years of service to the professional Fires Soldier“For most men the matter of learning is one ofpersonal preference. But for Army officers, theobligation to learn, to grow in their profession,is clearly a public duty.” GEN Omar Bradley L earn from the past, keep an challenges and issues we all face. Two eye on the present, and prepare articles in particular, provide the context for for the future. This special the last 100 years. As with a democracy, thecommemorative edition marks the maturity of the Fires Center of Excellence100th anniversary of the Fires Bulletin will take time, but focus, the basics and ourmagazine. The first edition January- chararacter will posture us well.March 1911, known as the Field Artillery The first is a historical article by Dr. BoydJournal, started a proud tradition of L. Dastrup, the field artillery historian forproviding leaders and Soldiers with up the U.S. Army Field Artillery School. Histo date information on doctrine, tactics, article, “History of the U.S. Army Fieldtechniques, and procedures. Artillery School from birth to the eve of Several of the articles in this issue touch World War II,” is part one of a two-part serieson challenges of the past, changes that that chronicles the many milestones andbrought us to the present and conditions achievements Fort Sill and the FA branchthey set for the future. Many of the themes have achieved since its inception a centurywe talk about today are highlighted in the ago. Many challenges we face within thehistorical articles of our branches and Army, our all-volunteer human capital,validates Bradley’s quote as we address how to shape the force for the future fight,similar issues today – “Happy 100th and creating a professional organization inBirthday – Fires Bulletin.” Therefore, a resource-constrained environment, arewe must be well grounded in the basics not new challenges, but are ones the Firesof our warfighting function Force must deal with nowof Fires- our Army and our and in the future. We must By MG David D. Halversoncountry depend on it. take an enterprise approach. The journal was born Commanding General of the U.S. Army Fires Center of Excellence The School of Fires,to meet the need of an and Fort Sill, Okla. like the Fires Bulletin,U.S. Army Field Artillery overcame many challengesbranch that was setting the conditions for a professional training as well. CPT Dan T. Moore, the first Commandant of the Schooland education system and as a way to keep its members up to date of Fires, visited several different European Artillery Schoolson the current professional tactics, techniques and procedures. CPT before establishing the School of Fires at Fort Sill in SeptemberWilliam J. Snow (who later became MG Snow) came up with the 1911. He used the German School as the model which had combatconcept for the magazine and was also the first editor. Although development, testing capability and training under one roof – muchresources were scarce, he worked tirelessly to get the magazine going like the Fires Center of Excellence we have today. Another forwardin its formative years and it has developed into the professional thinking officer, LTC Butner’s quote from 1923 could fit into ourbulletin we have today. current Joint and Combined Fires University Implementation Throughout the years the Fires Bulletin has gone through several Plan…“The subject of Field Artillery is a life study and the schoolname changes, reflecting Department of the Army policies, the hopes to lay the foundation on sound principles for such study.reoccurring splitting and merging of branches and various other The artillery officer must continue the study of his profession,changes that required a title change. Today, just as in 1911, the or he will fail when the time comes to practice it. And failure inbulletin serves as a professional outlet for the Fires forces to address war means failure in life, for the Soldier.”(Dastrup, 2010). LTC4 January-February 2011 • Fires
  5. 5. Butner’s thoughts focus on life-long learning and the importance Today, the Fires Bulletin highlights the best lessons learned andof a “foundation” or the “basics” of the profession. forward thinking of both the FA and ADA branches. It maintains the The second article which helps draw on the past is written by Mr. tradition started 100 years ago of a professional journal dedicatedDavid A. Christensen on the history of the U.S. Army Air Defense to the Soldiers and leaders of the Fires force.Artillery. In it he talks about the birth of the ADA to meet a new Although the continuation of publishing of the bulletin has beenthreat and how force design and weapons systems put the U.S. tenuous over the years, two key themes have endured for the pastADA at the top of the coalition pile when it came to employment of 100 years and continue to resonate during present day: the continualFires - a feat achieved in very short order through a focus on basics emphasis on combined arms doctrine and the continual effort toand a strong training program that developed effective battle drills include joint, intergovernmental, interagency and military (jointand gunnery skills important to a professional branch. The latest and combined) components in the overall Fires campaign strategytraining techniques and tactics were studied from across Europe to and concepts.produce a U.S. shoot to kill ratio of “600 rounds per enemy aircraft” Today, the synergies between the two branches continue to grow,versus the closest coalition partner rate of “6,000 to 1.” especially in our capabilities department. Constant professional Innovative leaders understood the new “technology” (aircraft) and dialogue between the branches is imperative, and submitting articleshow it was changing their operating environment. They developed to the Fires Bulletin is just one way to achieve this objective. Asthe skills and training needed for LT A.T. Slaten and his crew to we move deeper in to the Fires force of the future and continue toshoot down the first enemy aircraft for an American ADA crew in learn from our past, we face unprecedented opportunities that as aMay 1918. Those techniques spread across the force and made the Fires force we are just beginning to realize. We have a wealth ofU.S. ADA crews the most effective of the war. talent and innovation among our force. So as Fires professionals let’s Additional articles in this issue share common threads with not only take time to celebrate how far we’ve come, but continuethe ones from 1911 such as caring for your equipment, scouting to engage and collaborate providing input to the Fires Center oftechniques and joint force development. Several articles from the Excellence in order to make the next 100 years just as productive1911 issue are printed this month to highlight some of the discussions as the first.and focus of that period in our history. Fit to Fight – Fires Strong. Artillerymen fire during a gas mask attack in the Argonne Forest Area, Wis., during World War I. (Photo from Fires Bulletin historical archive.) • January-February 2011 5
  6. 6. The SITREPOne hundred years ago, the Field Artillery Journalpublished its first article. Below are updates on wherethe U.S. Field Artillery Association and Air DefenseArtillery Association stand today. US Field Artillery Association Air Defense Artillery Association Major accomplishments: Major activities: 100th anniversary celebration, May 2010 General membership meeting, Oct. 6, 2010Donation of the Field Artilleryman Statue in front Board member advisors engaging and of the Field Artillery Museum, Fort Sill, Okla. educating students in the ADA schoolhouse Addition of five new scholarships Establish contract to emplace first brick campaign orders at the base of the Air Benefits of membership: Defenders Statue Subscription to Field Artillery Journal, fellowship with professional field artillerymen, eligibility to Benefits of membership: win scholarships for members and members’ Receive updates on current Air Defenseimmediate family, invitation to U.S. Field Artillery Artillery Association initiatives, receive the Association functions and events ADAA Journal (to be launched tentatively in April 2011), discounts on ADAA merchandise, Dues: contribute to helping ADA causes One year: $25, two years: $40, three years: $60, five years: $100 and lifetime: based on age Dues: Annual membership: $25 or lifetime How to join: membership: $200 Visit the association’s office at 758 McNair Avenue, Fort Sill, Okla., or the association’s How to join: website at Visit the association’s website at http://www. January-February 2011 • Fires
  7. 7. History of the US Army Field Artillery School from birth to the eve of World War II Part I of II Soldiers with E Battery at practice with the seven inch siege guns at Fort Sill, Okla., c1910-20 (Photo courtesy of the Fort Sill Museum, Fort Sill, Okla.) schools (the Artillery School, the Engineer action. In 1908, the Chief of Coast Artillery, By Dr. Boyd L. Dastrup School of Application, the School of MG Arthur Murray, recommended opening Antisubmarine Defense, the School of a school of fire for field artillery. About the T he 20th century ushered the Application for Cavalry and Field Artillery same time, President Theodore Roosevelt U.S. Army into a new world. and the Army Medical School); the General and a group of progressive field artillery During the latter part of 1800s, Staff and Service College; and the Army officers also pushed for formal training tothe Army fought Native Americans in the War College for professional training. Root make the branch more professional.Trans-Mississippi West and was scattered also noted the lack of long-range planning To this end, Roosevelt directed the Warin small forts to accomplish its mission. A capabilities, in the War Department, Department to send CPT Dan T. Moore ofgood example, Fort Sill, Okla., in Indian and urged Congress to create a general the 6th Field Artillery Regiment, a manTerritory served as a cavalry post and as a staff to prepare military plans. Despite educated abroad and a former aide to thebase of operations during the Red River War stiff opposition in Congress and the War president, to Europe in 1908 to observeof 1874-1875 against hostile Comanche, Department, Congress adopted Root’s European field artillery training. While heCheyenne, and Kiowa bands and even recommendations in 1903, establishing a was there, he visited field artillery schoolsguarded Geronimo as a prisoner of war. chief of staff and a general staff. in Austria, Hungary, Holland, England, andInternational events, however, prodded Root also pushed Congress to enlarge Italy and studied at the German Army’sthe Army to reexamine its priorities. The the Army, to meet the country’s newly Artillery School at Juterborg. Because itSpanish-American War of 1898 propelled acquired overseas needs. In February 1901, developed and improved methods of fire,the U.S. into the international arena, causing a congressional act expanded the infantry tested new material, and emphasized firingit to emerge as a world power. This and from 25 to 30 regiments, dissolved the and tactical exercises, among other things,the vital need to modernize, in view of an artillery’s regimental organization, which the German school especially impressedEuropean arms race, encouraged the Army mixed coast and field artillery units in the convert from a frontier constabulary, same regiment, and established the corps At the direction of the War Department,designed for policing the Trans-Mississippi of artillery, composed of coast artillery and Moore subsequently traveled to Fort Sill inWest, to a force capable of fighting an field artillery units. November 1910, to make arrangementsEuropean-styled army. This transformation, Six years later, Congress finally for a field artillery school there, using thein the beginning of the 20th century, led to acknowledged the need for two separate Juterborg school as a model. Fort Sill’sthe opening of the School of Fire for Field artillery branches. On Jan. 25, 1907, wide expanse of land, 51,000 acres ofArtillery in 1911 to train field artillerymen. Congress divided the coast artillery and the varied terrain providing sufficient room B irth, struggle, and validation. Secretary of War, Elihu Root, who field artillery into independent branches and created permanent field artillery regiments and battalions during peacetime, allowing for target practice and maneuvering of field artillery batteries; a mild climate permitting training all year; and the presence of the 1stwas appointed in 1899 by President WilliamMcKinley, restructured the Army over the War Department to develop officers, Field Artillery Regiment, caused Moore toseveral years. Under his direction, the noncommissioned officers, and enlisted endorse the Oklahoma post as a home forWar Department fashioned a progressive personnel with field artillery expertise. field artillery training.and sequential education system in 1901, The separation of the coast artillery and Also favorably inclined to the location,consisting of the U.S. Military Academy; field artillery, the adoption of sophisticated the War Department eventually approvedgarrison schools at each post for elementary field guns, the emergence of indirect fire, and Fort Sill as the home for the new school.instruction in theory and practice; service the lack of field artillery training prompted War Department General Orders, No. 72, • January-February 2011 7
  8. 8. June 3, 1911, authorized the School of Fire within the allotted fifteen seconds. serve as instructors. Afterwards, on Aug.for Field Artillery at Fort Sill, outlined its Moore’s successor, LTC Edward P. 3, 1917, a small contingent of French fieldpriorities of providing practical instruction McGlachlin, continued improving the artillery officers, with combat experience onand designated the courses of instruction. school. He published supplementary the western front, arrived to teach FrenchA couple of days later, War Department training literature and gave additional doctrine and tactics.General Orders, No. 73, made the school training time to tactics. This created a more Meanwhile, on July 27, 1917, Snow,an official part of the War Department’s comprehensive instruction program and from the 4th Field Artillery Regiment,professional educational system that produced a more broadly trained graduate. reported for duty and replaced COL (laterincluded the U.S. Military Academy, post With Moore and McGlachlin as Brigadier General) Adrian S. Fleming. Snowschools for enlisted personnel, garrison commandants, the School of Fire made found Fleming, struggling to organize aschools for officers, and branch service concrete progress since opening in 1911. In school, with little or no resources. In fact,schools for branch and technical training. a memorandum for the Chief of Staff of the the small cadre of instructors lectured outShortly after, on July 19, 1911, the Army, MG Hugh L. Scott, about the school, of the Field Artillery Drill and ServiceWar Department selected Moore as the the Chief of the War College Division, BG Regulations of 1916, to the diverse class ofcommandant. M.M. Macomb, on Dec., 18, 1914, stated, 21 students who had arrived earlier in July. Several months later, the School of “graduates could shoot and hit targets better They formed class zero, distinguishing itFire for Field Artillery opened its doors than their predecessors of 1911-1913.” The from the regular wartime classes that beganon Sept. 15, 1911, to mark the beginning memorandum credited the improved firing in October 1917. Some officers of class zeroof standardized gunnery instruction and of FA batteries to the school and its graduates were active U.S. Army Cavalry and Coasttraining and some instruction in field who returned to their regiments and taught Artillery officers, who had been transferredartillery tactics and brought an end to Fort their colleagues. to the field artillery, filling shortages. Some WSill’s days as a cavalry post. Operations ar years. The Mexican Revolution were National Guard officers; and somebegan with a small staff and faculty, CPT soon influenced the infant school. were former noncommissioned officersDan T. Moore, 1LT Ralph M. Pennell, 1LT In August 1915, the War Department who had recently been commissioned.Roger S. Parrott, and 1LT John C. Maul. shipped two of the school’s field batteries Despite and competition for firing rangesOf the four, only Moore had experience to the border, causing McGlachlin to close and other resources with the 36th Division,as a field artillery officer. Parrott had the school in the fall of 1915, permitting composed of Oklahoma and Texas Nationalrecently transferred from field artillery to students to return to their units. Although Guard units, the 35th Division, comprisedordnance, giving him minimal field artillery the school reopened in February 1916, of Kansas and Missouri National Guardexpertise. Pennell was a cavalry officer reoccurring Mexican border troubles forced units and CPT Harry S. Truman’s 129thand Maul was an infantry officer. Moore closure, once again. On May 9, 1916, the Field Artillery Regiment, and the School ofwrote, “they set out to teach officers by War Department shutdown the School of Musketry, which had reopened and later leftactual practical exercise . . . the general Fire and the School of Musketry, which for Camp Benning, Ga., in the fall of 1918 toprincipals in conducting fire . . . [and] the had been at Fort Sill since 1913 and had make room for field artillery training, and thetactical employment of field artillery, with competed with the School of Fire for limited inexperience of zero class, Snow achieveda clear emphasis on gunnery.” resources, and sent all officers to the border. remarkable success. Students in zero class During the school’s first years, Moore The last field artillery officer left July 9, graduated and left for France. To supportfocused on the basics. Students spent time 1916; and the School of Fire did not open school’s training, the War Department builtwith flash targets, prepared firing data and again until July 1917, during World War I. a school complex, for classes, as well aslearned to adjust fire onto a target. They World War I invigorated the School of barracks on the plateau northwest of thealso learned panoramic sketching, technical Fire for Field Artillery. In early July 1917, the old post, using Snow’s facility plan. Namedand tactical battery drill, and practical school consisted of a caretaker detachment Snow Hall, after Snow, who later became theballistics. Among other things, they also under COL Robert M. Blatchford, an first chief of field artillery on February 15,fired field guns, and for many this was a infantry officer and the commander of Fort 1918, the central school building includednew experience. Some students could even Sill. On July 10, 1917, a brief telegram from the office of the administrator, large classhit a target and compute gunnery solutions the War Department, notified Blatchford rooms, a movie theater, small class rooms, of plans to reopen the school, satisfying and other rooms. wartime requirements. Five days later, SGT In the midst of the construction, the Morris Swett, the school librarian, met 21 first wartime class assembled on Oct. 1, students as they stepped off a train from 1917, for 12 weeks of training. The class, Oklahoma City, Okla., for training. composed of active Army, National Guard, Subsequently, the instructors, handpicked and National Army officers, ranging from by the incoming Commandant of the School second lieutenant to colonel, received its of Fire for Field Artillery, COL William J. introduction to the school in the Old Trader’s Snow, who had also participated in founding Store, also serving as the administration the Field Artillery Association and the “Field building and school library until the school Artillery Journal” in 1910 as a captain to complex was completed. As Fleming, who promote professionalism, and school staff, had replaced Snow in September 1917 whenFrench liaison officers at the School of Fire in slowly began to show up. On July 19, 1917, he left to command a field artillery brigade,1917. (FROM LEFT TO RIGHT) Lieutenant L.A. Lieutenant Colonels F.E. Hopkins, and Fred explained to the students, the school’s mainGirard, Captain C.P.F. Pierret, Major E. Durette, T. Austin, Captains Robert M. Danford and mission focused on gunnery instruction,Lieutenants H. Negre and J. Varrall. (Photo courtesy Cliff Andrus, as well as other active Army although it also trained aerial observers, inof U.S. Army Field Artillery School) field artillery officers, reported for duty to a two-week course at Henry Post Field on8 January-February 2011 • Fires
  9. 9. Recruiting poster for the U.S. Army Field Artillery, circa 1919. (Photo courtesy of Library of Congress) Meanwhile, the school’sFort Sill. Upon graduation from the school’s At the time, the War Department future at Fortobserver course, some students entered the had a decentralized field artillery Sill remainedSchool for Aerial Observers at Henry Post training system, conducting u n c l e a r.Field, later reorganized as the Air Service field artillery training in the To e n d t h eSchool in August 1918, for additional aerial Basic Course, Camp Knox, uncertainty, theobserver training. Ky., the Battery Officers’ War Department During the last training week, the Course, Fort Sill, and the explored otherschool’s culminating training event gave Field Officers’ Course, Camp potential locationsthe students the opportunity to conduct Bragg, N.C. This prompted and narrowed itsunobserved indirect fire, using maps, and the McGlachlin board to search to Fort Sillobserved indirect fire from trenches modeled propose consolidating the and Fort Bragg, N. C.after those in France, for realism. Employing three field artillery schools Fort Bragg had morethis trench system, other practical exercises at one location, with Camp rain and snow and wasand class room instruction, the school Bragg and Fort Sill being the lead larger, with 120,454trained 3,000 officers in open warfare and contenders. Because Fort Sill was relatively acres, than Fort Sill. Intrench warfare during the war and formed small, the board viewed locating the school contrast, Fort Sill hadthe heart of an extensive field artillery there as a temporary solution, until money more housing, varied terrain and antraining program, composed of replacement was available to move it to a better site. elaborate firing range; but the installationschools, for training officers and enlisted Backed by this recommendation and the was small, only 51,292 acres, but withpersonnel, brigade firing centers, such as the availability of firing ranges and other a warmer, drier, windier and sunnierone at Camp Doniphan on Fort Sill where resources at Fort Sill, the War Department climate, permitting outdoor instructionfield artillery brigades were mobilized and selected the Oklahoma installation as a almost every day. Influenced by this andtrained, and an officer training school, for short-term expedient and consolidated all the requirement to build a field artilleryofficer candidate training. field artillery courses there in 1922, to reduce firing range, barracks and other facilities As Snow observed, the School of Fire expenses. at Fort Bragg, Secretary of War, Patrick J.for Field Artillery started from scratch and Addressing the importance of the officer Hurley, who was born in Indian Territory,had a rebirth in July 1917. Closing the courses, Assistant Commandant of the Field ended years of indecision about the Fieldschool, during the crisis on the Mexican Artillery School, COL Henry W. Butner, Artillery School’s permanent location. Onborder, in 1916 and 1917, ended a brief commented in “The Shrapnel,” the school’s Dec. 10, 1930, Hurley designated Fort Sillbut successful era and created a void. The yearbook, in 1923, about the school’s crucial as the school’s permanent home.School of Fire for Field Artillery, under role in professional education. According to Hurley’s decision formed a criticalSnow and Fleming, competed for limited Butner, graduation from the Field Artillery milestone in the evolution of the school,resources with the National Guard divisions, School marked the beginning of a career. removing any doubt about the school’sthe brigade firing center, and the School of He wrote, “The subject of field artillery future, at Fort Sill and reinforced theMusketry, innovated by developing an aerial is a life study and the school hopes to lay invaluable training being conducted course and constructing a WorldWar I trench system. The school rose tothe occasion after reopening, becoming a the foundation on sound principles for such study. The artillery officer must continue the study of his profession, or he will fail M ore missions. In the midst of the struggle over its location, the school assumed an active role in combattraining focal point, for officers with duty when the time comes to practice it. And developments. In cooperation with thein France. failure in war means failure in life, for the field artillery board that moved from Fort A tenuous existence. While World War I validated the School of Firefor Field Artillery’s reason for being, Soldier.” Butner reinforced professional life-long learning, beyond the school so officers would be successful in war when Bragg to Fort Sill, in 1922, the school evaluated developmental motor-drawn (towed) howitzers and guns, self-propelledpeacetime brought uncertainty. As part of it came. howitzers and guns, signal equipment,the National Defense Act of 1920, guiding A key strength of the school’s instruction sights and other field artillery equipment,military activities during peacetime, program involved practical exercises, in the 1920s. In 1928 and 1929, the schoolCongress revamped the War Department’s which reinforced classroom instruction. tested porteé field artillery, where light fieldeducation system, outlining an extensive During the 1920s and 1930s, such inventive pieces were loaded onto trucks or trailerssequential and progressive training and training gave U.S. Army, National Guard, for rapid transportation, but failed to reacheducation system, for the U.S. Army active Reserve, and Marine Corps officers any firm conclusions about its suitability,and Reserve forces with the Field Artillery attending the school full-time, opportunities not making any recommendations. LaterSchool being a key element. In early 1922, to apply theoretical knowledge to field in 1933 and 1934, the school tested anthe War Department, however, concluded conditions. They participated in map experimental battalion of truck-drawn fieldits existing officer education system was problems, practiced night adjustment of artillery. Completed in 1935, the school’stoo cumbersome and expensive, in an era fire, and conducted live fire, among other study demonstrated the maneuverabilityof declining military budgets, and formed practical exercises. Meanwhile, enlisted of truck-drawn field artillery, finding ita board to streamline training and save Soldiers acquired skills in shorthand, less vulnerable and less subject to fatiguemoney. Headed by McGlachlin, now a motor mechanics, horse shoeing, saddlery, than horse-drawn units, and urged adoptingbrigadier general, the board scrutinized the communications and cooking in resident motor vehicles as prime movers, but onlyschool system. courses. after they had become more reliable. • January-February 2011 9
  10. 10. Although it participated in other combat center generally took longer to mass Fires. formally petitioned the War Departmentdevelopment projects, the school’s most Although the fire direction center on Oct. 8, 1941, for organic field artilleryinnovative work came with the creation promised to make fire support more aerial observation. Although he initiallyof the fire direction center in the 1930s. responsive, the field artillery and the encountered stiff resistance, from the ChiefDuring the 1920s, massing fires with War Department resisted adopting it. of the U.S. Army Air Corps, MG Henry H.observed indirect fire proved to be difficult. Refinements to the center in 1939 by the Arnold, the airpower enthusiast relented andObserved fire relied on a forward observer, Director of the Gunnery Department, LTC agreed to support any experimenting. Withlocating targets by providing a descriptive H.L.C. Jones, and his staff and instructors this endorsement, Danford subsequentlyreference to a prominent terrain feature on paved the way for acceptance. He displayed obtained approval from the War Departmenta map, or by giving the target’s coordinates his improvements, in early 1941, to the on Dec. 10, 1941, to test organic fieldto the batteries for plotting. As long as maps Commandant of the Field Artillery School, artillery aerial observation in February andwere available, the battalion could mass BG George R. Allin, convincing him to March 1942. Using various light aircraftobserved indirect fire. Without maps, the accept the center. After the Chief of Staff, models, the experiments demonstrated thebattalion had to adjust its firing batteries GEN George C. Marshall, witnessed a timeliness and reliability of organic fieldindividually onto the target, and this was four-battalion shoot at Fort Sill on April artillery aerial observation. This promptedtime consuming. 10, 1941, the War Department adopted the War Department to issue a directive, Motivated by the need to mass fires the fire direction center. Subsequently, a on June 6, 1942, establishing organic fieldmore rapidly on a battlefield that was demonstration of the fire direction center in artillery aerial observation and creating thegrowing more mobile, the Director of the October 1941 finally converted the Chief of Department of Air Training in the FieldGunnery Department, MAJ Carlos Brewer, Field Artillery, MG Robert M. Danford, to Artillery School to train students to landset out in 1929-1933 to make fires more the concept. Coupled with the graphic firing small aircraft on roads, short-improvisedresponsive. Brewer and his instructors table introduced in 1940 and the portable landing strips and open fields, as well asabandoned massing fire by a descriptive radio, the school’s fire direction center observing fire from the air, among otherterrain feature or grid coordinate reference. revolutionized fire support. As a team, they critical skills.They introduced a firing chart, adopted the permitted shifting observed Fires, rapidly As participation in the development ofpractice of locating battery positions by and effectively around the battlefield. organic field artillery aerial observationsurvey, and designated targets with reference Reinforcing its leadership, in fire suggested, the Field Artillery Schoolto the base point on the chart. In the spring of support doctrine and organization, the became a noteworthy institution. While1931, the Gunnery Department successfully school meanwhile worked on organic aerial classroom instruction and innovativedemonstrated massing battalion fire using observation. To make aerial observation practical exercises trained field artillerymenthis method. Yet, Brewer did not centralize more effective, the Field Artillery School in their trade, the school’s stress on life-longcomputing firing data, at the battalion, and the field artillery advocated adopting professional development and pioneeringeven though he and other field artillery organic field artillery aerial observation efforts in combat developments led to theofficers advocated this practice. He kept after World War I but gained few adherents. fire direction center, organic field artillerythis function in the battery, because he could Although organic field artillery aerial aerial observation, and Army aviation andnot, at the battalion, find a reliable method observation received little attention during paved the way for the powerful field artilleryof computing firing data. the 1920s, Danford revived interest in it in arm of World War II. Brewer’s successor, MAJ Orlando the late 1930s because longer range fieldWard, eventually solved the problem of guns being introduced and the growing usecentralizing computing firing data. From of camouflage and deeply defiladed batteries Dr. Boyd L. Dastrup is the U.S. Army Field1932 to 1934, Ward and his instructors made ground observation problematic. He Artillery branch historian for the U.S. Armydeveloped the fire direction center. wanted the U.S. Army Air Corps to supply Field Artillery School, at Fort Sill, Okla. HeThe battalion commander became the the field artillery with light aircraft, pilots received a Ph.D. in U.S. Military and Diplomatic and ground crews and proposed aircraft History from Kansas State University, in 1980.director of fire whenever fire control be assigned directly to field artillery units, He has written, “The U.S. Army Commandcould be centralized; and the battery and General Staff College: A Centennialcommander became rather than corps headquarters, as outlined by History;” “Crusade in Nuremberg: Militarythe conductor of U.S. Army doctrine. Organic field artillery Occupation, 1945-1949;” “King of Battle:fire. With accurate aerial observation would furnish A Branch History of the U.S. Army’s Fieldmaps, the battalion responsive aerial observation and Artillery;” “Modernizing the King of Battle:fire direction facilitate engaging deep targets. 1973-1991;” “The Field Artillery: History andcenter could Undeterred by opposition Sourcebook;” and “Operation Desert Stormmass fire within from airpower enthusiasts and and Beyond: Modernizing the Field Artillery inten minutes of U.S. Army doctrine and supported the 1990s.” He has also written articles in, “A by MAJ William Ford’s article Guide to the Sources of United States Militaryreceiving a on organic aerial observation in History;” “The Oxford Companion to Americancall for fire; a Military History;” “The U.S. Army and Worldbattery could the “Field Artillery Journal” in War II;” and “Professional Military Educationprovide fire April 1941 and various studies by in the United States: A Historical Dictionary.”within five the Field Artillery School, Danford He has also appeared on the History Channelminutes. in “Dangerous Missions: Forward ObservationWithout (2001),” and “Extreme Marksman (2008),”m a p s , Recruiting poster for the U.S. Army Field as well as the Military History Channel on,the fire Artillery, circa 1920. (Photo courtesy of Library “Artillery Strikes (2005),” and “Weaponology:direction of Congress) Artillery (2006).”10 January-February 2011 • Fires
  11. 11. Soldiers train on the Lewis machine gun at Camp Mills, N.Y. (Photo courtesy Air Defense of Library of Congress) of the Anti-Aircraft Service. GEN Shipton would soon depart for Artillery France where he stood up the first American Air Artillery School, Sept. 26, 1917, while in theater with the American Expeditionary Force.contributions, T he original class of 1917. The first course consisted of 25, U.S. Army Coastal Artillery officers, who received their anti-aircraft instruction from French officers. After completing theirsolutions and training, these first officers served as cadre for the artillery section of the American AA School. Two more sections of instruction were soon added to the AA school, a machine gun section and the searchlightissues during section. Shipton augmented these two courses of instruction by outsourcing other branches within the American Expeditionary Force; the machine-gun training was provided by infantry officers, World War I and the searchlight instruction was taught by engineer officers. In all, the American Anti-Aircraft School produced 659 officers and 12,000 enlisted Soldiers by war’s end. By David A. Christensen D octrine and tactics. The Anti-Aircraft Service had a maxim that “firing should not be adjusted, but prepared.” The reason this maxim was adopted, was because of the inaccuracy of A s the U.S. entered World War I, it became apparent a the 75mm cannon as the high-altitude anti-aircraft deterrent, and the new technology had been introduced into tactics of employing such a weapon. Aiming adjustments during an combat, and this new technology was quickly becoming engagement with the 75mm, became an impossible task. Instead,a force multiplier. The new threat was the Aero-Plane. The Aero- gun crews would pre-register their guns. This pre-registrationPlane was soon adapted by war planners to serve in a variety of consisted of firing a volley of rounds into the air, to determinemissions, ranging from aerial observation, to long-range bombing where the desired air burst would occur. With multiple gun systemsmissions deep behind enemy lines. concentrating on the same avenue of approach, “volume of fires” By 1915, the Germans had developed bombers that terrorized soon became the solution to the aerial problem. This solution wasParis, and by 1917, these German Gothas, which were heavier- also a result of how the aircraft was typically employed. Aircraftthan-air strategic bombers, were crossing the English Channel pilots used terrain features to navigate, and they preferred linearsuccessfully bombing London. To counter this new threat, the war routes. These observations of aircraft techniques allowed AA unitsdepartment reached out to the U.S. Army Coastal Artillery and to develop plans that employed their guns along these predictedelected Brigadier General James B. Shipton to be the first chief routes. “Diversity of fires” along these routes was also important. • January-February 2011 11
  12. 12. Machine guns were used against low-altitude targets, while air results. The German observation plane went into a dive, followedbursts delivered from the 75mm engaged the high-altitude threat. by an uncontrolled spiral, finally crashing into the 500 meters of The Anti-Aircraft Service also developed a doctrine of “deterrent ground known as no-man’s land. The crew managed to survive thefires.” It had become widespread knowledge that “although hitting a crash, and was viewed scrambling from the wreckage and behindplane was common, bringing one down was regarded as a fortunate German lines. That night, a French infantry patrol ventured acrossincident.” From this lesson learned, American AA students were friendly lines to strip the enemy plane of its machine guns, andinstructed on techniques to deter the aircraft and keep it at a distance. other useful equipment. The patrol was also successful in cuttingInstructors drilled into the students that forcing an aircraft to fly at away a piece of the aircraft underbelly and later presented it to thea higher altitude would decrease their accuracy, as was the belief American Battery Commander, CPT E. A. Mellon as a souvenirthat a successful volume of fire would discourage the pilot from and confirmation of the American’s first recorded kill.reaching his objective. By the war’s end, America’s Anti-Aircraft Service was the most The American Anti-Aircraft Service was the principal user of successful among the allies. The success was attributed to the tenantssearchlights during World War I. In all, the AA Service had 34 of good training, the doctrine they developed and used, and to theplatoons activated while in theater. Most European’s believed that skill and discipline of the crews operating the weapon systems.searchlights were impractical and would give frontline positions When comparing the data, it took a British gun crew 10,000 roundsaway to enemy targeting. The American’s however, adopted the and the French crew 6,000 rounds to down a single plane. But, itsearchlights primarily for rear defenses. The searchlight quickly took only 600 rounds for the Americans to bring one down.made an impact as a deterrent to nighttime bombing raids. Their First to Fire!success was achieved, in part, by the ability to track and highlight athreat. However, the nighttime tracking of an aircraft by a searchlightoften hindered a pilot’s ability to see and would cause him to become David A. Christensen currently serves as the U.S. Army Air Defensedisorient and ineffective, often abandoning his target. historian for the U.S. Army Air Defense Artillery School at Fort Sill, T he first recorded kill. The highlight for the newly formed service came to fruition on the 18th of May 1918. AGerman observation plane was crossing between the security of Okla. He spent 22 years of active service with the U. S. Army in various assignments as both an NCO and commissioned officer. He served with the Training and Doctrine Command as a professor of militarythe Germany’s lines, and into the buffer of no man’s land, trying history at the Army’s Command and General Staff College for the pastto collect information on unit positioning. An alert crew of the 2nd several years, before arriving to Fort Sill in 2009 as the Air DefenseAnti-aircraft Battery was located approximately 2,700 meters away Branch Historian. He is also resourced by Cameron University as anand was armed with two French 75mm guns. As the crew prepared adjunct professor. He received graduate degrees from The Universitythe shell fuses for the desired altitude, LT A.T. Slaten calculated the of Oklahoma, 1993, Kansas State University, 2003, and is a graduate ofnecessary data, on range, location, and speed. Soon the air was filled the Army’s Command and General Staff College resident course, 2001.with the burst of powder and fragmentation, and the effects providedAnti-aircraft searchlights illuminate the night sky above Washington Barracks, District of Columbia. (Photo courtesy of the Library of Congress)12 January-February 2011 • Fires
  13. 13. An Afghan National Army soldier sits at the endof an M119 light-tow howitzer from B Battery, 4thBattalion, 25th Field Artillery Regiment at ForwardOperation Base Airborne, Afghanistan, Oct. 14, 2009.Afghan soldiers were culminating their field artillerycertification after training for the past eight monthswith U.S. Army Soldiers from 4-25th Field Artillery.(Photo by SGT Teddy Wade, U.S. Army) New artillery school will serve as the Fires foundation for the professionalism of the Afghan National Army the operators was a poor translation of an employ them. old Russian maintenance manual. Programs In March 2010, LTC Rich Vagg, Royal By LTC Charles D. Kirby, U.S. Australian Artillery, received orders to of instruction were developed for a 6-week,Army, and LTC Richard Vagg, Royal direct-fire course to be conducted as a part report to Afghanistan to serve as commander Australian Artillery of their advanced combat training which of the Artillery Training Team-Kabul. was similar to the U.S. Army’s advanced Additionally, he was assigned to serve asI n March 2010 the Afghan National individual training. But, the ANA training the senior advisor to the ANA director of Army was at odds with itself. did not include fire support or fire direction the field artillery and the commander of the The ANA leadership had long since and there no supporting doctrine on how to ANA School of Artillery.identified a requirement for a long-range nest ANA Field Artillery into the maneuver Vagg, who is a seasoned Australianindirect fire capability. They decided commander’s order of battle. field artillery officer, was excited aboutto fill this requirement with the D-30, a On top of that, much of the basic issue his new job as an ‘advisor.’ He reported toSoviet designed 122 mm howitzer, with items and sighting equipment for the fielded Kabul in mid-April and his team of nine,a max range of 22 kilometers donated to ANA D-30 batteries had long since been additional Australian Red legs would follow.Afghanistan a few years prior. However, lost or damaged. Worse yet, maneuver Upon arrival in Kabul, he had an officeby March 2010, the only capability the commanders who had the King of Battle call with the Combined Training AdvisoryD-30 had brought to the ANA was a huge, at their disposal reassigned their Redlegs Group-Afghanistan commander to receiveinaccurate, direct-fire weapon system. The to guard duty and KP-like duties because his orders, which mainly consisted ofonly manual that had been developed for they had no understanding of how to standing up the ANA School of Artillery. • January-February 2011 13
  14. 14. This is not what he had prepared himself for out how to determine reliable firing data, adopt this gunnery computer.mentally. While artillery was being taught and don’t forget to include a professional The next step was to build the cadre,in Afghanistan, there was no proponent, education system. However, the constraints for a two-pronged approach that includedno true institutional base to refine tactics, he laid out for his team included some special educating all current and future ANA Fieldtechniques, and procedures, no doctrine, twists — the majority of the ANA Soldiers Artillerymen, standardizing institutionaland most of all – no indirect fire capability. they were dealing with were illiterate, cadre for a training base, and creating He was given this as his only definitive approximately 25 percent of the weapon mobile education training teams for theguidance: D-30 is the weapon system, and systems and associated crews had already previously fielded ANA Field Artillery units.the first ANA Field Artillery battery needs deployed, and all the instructors needed to The first ANA Train the Trainer Course,to be prepared to join it’s assigned combat be ANA soldiers. to build the institutional base with ANAsupport kandak (battalion) for collective At the time, a clear standout among the instructors, graduated Sept. 26, 2010. Thesetraining at the Consolidated Fielding Center Australian Redlegs was LT Luke Haitas, a T3 graduates executed an end-of-course,located at Camp Blackhorse, Afghanistan young officer assigned to develop the fire live-fire exercise — ANA gunners, ANAin time to graduate by April 2011. direction procedures. Initially, as any good FDC, and ANA fire supporters — all fired Vagg now refers to this as his “dream artilleryman would do, Haitas developed on time and on target.job;” because where else in one’s military an ANA version of ‘Charts and Darts’— The new METT teams are scheduled tocareer do you receive orders for such a huge which is still used to check safety prior be formed with a combination of coalitionundertaking and yet get so little guidance? to executing a Fires mission. From there, Redlegs all trained by the new cadre of the The Australian Redleg had his mission Haitas began working with a contractor to ANA School of Artillery. In May 2011, theand immediately moved to the Australian build a handheld fire-direction computer METTs will complete training and beginversion of the U.S. Army military decision which was equipped with an internal moving to the ANA Field Artillery areamaking process, the MAP or military Global Positioning System and tabular of operations to field newly-refurbishedappreciation process. He determined a way firing tables based on standard metrological D-30s complete with basic issue items. Theyahead and wrote the order that would be data. The end result was simple, it could be will also re-educate the currently fieldedused as a guide to develop the ANA School operated like a palm pilot with a stylus, but artillerymen and their owning commands.of Artillery and the doctrine to insert the most importantly the UDC D-30 Gunnery Each ANA Combat Support Kandakartillery into its operational force. When his Computer calculated accurate, safe, firing contains an ANA Field Artillery batteryteam arrived, he gave out his orders—write data as quickly as a handheld calculator consisting of two, four-gun platoons.doctrine, re-write POIs, write field manuals, can add and subtract. Although the UDC Given the asymmetric nature of warfaredetermine battle drills, develop a 6400 mil D-30 Gunnery Computer was developed in Afghanistan, the employment of theindirect fire capability with a weapon system specifically for the ANA School of Artillery, currently fielded artillery batteries is idealmeant for 1600 mil zones of fire, figure it is quite likely that other nations could — within ANA forward operating bases. An Afghan National Army soldier and Mongolian instructor teach newly enlisted Afghan soldiers about the 122 mm D-30 howitzer Oct. 4, 2010, at the ANA Kabul Military Training Center, outside of Kabul. These fresh recruits are part of the new artillery school at KMTC, where students learn the history of artillery and how to use artillery equipment. (Photo by SGT Rebecca Linder, U.S. Army)14 January-February 2011 • Fires
  15. 15. moving in the right direction, and by the summer of 2012 the artillery will take its rightful place in the Afghan National Army as the King of Battle. Lieutenant Colonel Charles “Skip” Kirby, U.S. Army Field Artillery, is currently the deputy director of operations, CJ3, NATO Training Mission Combined Security Transition Command - Afghanistan. Previously, he served as the chief of future operations, G3/5, for the Fires Center of Excellence, Fort Sill, Okla., until April 2010. He also deployed to Afghanistan from June 2006 to April 2007 in which he served as a Ministry of Defense mentor, Combined Security Transition Command-A Kabul and to Iraq in from July 20047 to February 2005 as a counterfire officer for III Corps, Field Artillery. In 1984, he earned a Bachelor of Arts in business from Sterling College, Kan.Lt. Gen. Shir Mohammad Karimi, left, general staff chief of operations, Afghan National Army, Lieutenant Colonel Richard Anthony Vagg,thanks an Australian trainer, who is part of the Australian led Training Team – Kabul, Oct. 4, 2010, Royal Australian Artillery, is currently servingat the official opening ceremony of the ANA School of Artillery at Kabul Military Training Center, as the commanding officer of the Afghanoutside of Kabul. (Photo by SGT Rebecca Linder, U.S. Army) National Army Field Artillery Training Team, as a part of Operation SLIPPER (Australia’sEmployed in this manner the ANA Field noncommissioned officer graduates; and contribution to Operation Enduring Freedom).Artillery can provide optimal coverage 203 officer graduates. The METTs will Previously, Vagg has served a variety ofand will nest well within the ANA order of execute the turn in of 93 previously-fielded regimental appointments within 4th Fieldbattle. Further, it provides a great forum for D-30s and field 210 fully-refurbished and Regiment, the 3rd Brigade and 6th Battalionthe METT teams to simultaneously educate equipped D-30s across the ANA Corps. (Motorized) of the Royal Australian Regiment,the various fire support elements and their Additionally, the METTs will serve as the the 7th Brigade. On returning to Australia hemaneuver leadership at the Kandak, brigade, primary integrators and educators regarding will take up the position of the SO1 Joint Fires,and corps levels. The METT teams will play all things artillery for the operational force Army Headquarters. In December 2011, hea crucial role in the proper integration of throughout the ANA Corps. The future of will assume command of the newly formedthe artillery into the Afghan National Army. the artillery within the ANA is definitely Air Land Regiment, Royal Australian Artillery.They will field completely refurbishedweapon systems; but more importantlythey will educate, inform, and advise themaneuver commanders at every level onhow to utilize the King of Battle in the heatof battle. The newly established ANA School ofArtillery, began training the first class ofRedlegs, Oct. 4. A cadre of ANA soldiers(39 in all) and advisors from four separatecountries — Australia, Singapore, theUnited States, and Mongolia currentlymake up the teaching team at the ANA FieldArtillery School. COL Shakerulah is thedirector of ANA Field Artillery, LTC Aminis the commander of the ANA School ofArtillery, LTC Rich Vagg is the commanderof ATT-K, and MAJ Piero Bertocchi is theexecutive officer for ATT-K. Hence the cadreand ATT-K is truly multinational and willbecome more so, once the METT teamsbegin to arrive, in 2011. An Afghan National Army soldier and Mongolian instructor teach newly enlisted Afghan soldiers In the coming year, the ANA School about the 122 mm D-30 howitzer Oct. 4, 2010, at the ANA Kabul Military Training Center, outsideof Artillery will produce more than 1,036 of Kabul. These fresh recruits are part of the new artillery school at KMTC, where students learnartillery soldiers — gunners, fire direction the history of artillery and how to use artillery equipment. (Photo by SGT Rebecca Linder, U.S. Army)specialists, and fire supporters; 842 • January-February 2011 15
  16. 16. Keeping it real:Don’t let Joint FiresObserver skills deteriorate U.S. Air Force 2nd Lt. Eamonn OShea looks off Snow Halls rooftop as part of an exercise for the Joint Fires Observer Course at Fort Sill, Okla., By MSG Timothy Ryan April 15, 2010. (Photo by Marie Berberea, Fort Sill Cannoneer)C ongratulations, you have completed the Joint Fires TACP. These Air Force specialists are assigned to Army combat Observer course at Fort Sill, Okla. Now what? I maneuver units around the world. On a battlefield, they form a think the trend is to get back into the day-to-day grind tactical air control party team that plans, requests and directs airof garrison operations with all the tasks that must be accomplished strikes against enemy targets in close proximity to friendly forces. Aon a daily basis, but JFO skills may atrophy. TACP is generally a two-airman team, working in an Army ground So, after three or four months back at garrison, are you ready unit and directing close air support firepower toward enemy targetsto go to war as a JFO? If you are truly honest you might answer on the ground.‘no’ to the question. Because daily skills as a JFO might not be Although the initial training begins at the JFO school house,exercised, ‘just-in-time’ training might be needed to get back up JFO skills need to be honed at the home station. A great deal ofto speed. This is the wrong approach and a better course of action training should be accomplished at the home station, and is theis needed. A thorough continuation training program can help to correct place for refresher and spin-up training. Maneuver trainingensure the maneuver commander is getting a valuable warrior. centers are vital to exercising all the pieces making up the joint The joint and combined integration directorate states in the fires team. However, they are not the venue for refresher or just-article “Air, Land, and Sea Applications Bulletin,” that ongoing in-time training. Graduate level tasks should culminate at eventstraining and qualification of JFOs are key factors in combat success. such as National Training Center, Fort Irwin, Calif., and the JointLuckily, the resources needed to build and sustain a robust JFO Readiness Training Center, Fort Polk, La. These training centerscontinuation training program exist at your garrison. should be utilized for full-spectrum operations that provide JFO C ontinuous training. The integration of close air support into the ground scheme of maneuver is a perishable skillset that requires continuous training. Motivated leadership can top-off training. There are three parts to building a comprehensive continuation training program. The first part is gaining knowledge. Just becausebuild a comprehensive JFO program that can be tailored to any information was retained long enough to take a test at the JFOsituation. Because of the joint nature of combat these days, it is school house does not mean it will be remembered for the longimperative the services are able to work together in order to meet the haul. Along with academic learning comes the need to review newsupported commanders’ intent. According to the JFO memorandum technologies that continue to change at an alarming rate. The secondof agreement, the joint Fires observer training program relies on joint part of the equation is gaining practical skills that get the proceduralcollaboration. As resources allow, Joint Terminal Attack Controllers requirements of close air support down to a second nature, andand JFOs need to train together. A good way to accomplish is to finally, putting it all together culminating exercise with the jointvisit the local tactical air control party personnel. terminal attack controller/joint fire observer team and live-flying Only a select few wear the Black Beret that symbolizes the aircraft.16 January-February 2011 • Fires