Fires Warfighting Function in Support of Regionally Aligned Forces

  • Colonel Gregory M. Smith

As the Army winds down combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan and faces a resource constrained future, it must find ways to organize and train to ensure flexibility and responsiveness to the needs of the geographic combatant commanders. With this challenge in mind, the Chief of Staff of the Army challenged Army leadership to provide regionally aligned forces to the combatant commander for his employment as part of Theater Security Cooperation (TSC), Phase 0 (Shape the Environment,) and Phase 1 (Deter the Enemy) operations. With effective and focused engagement, the combatant commander can prevent the escalation to Phase 2 (Seize the Initiative), but if required has a regionally familiar force available for decisive action. This paper will analyze potential challenges and opportunities within the fires WfF by considering the requirements of RAF and the current organization and capabilities of the fires WfF in the DOTMLPF framework.