Security Force Assistance: Meeting Challenges of the Future

  • Lieutenant Colonel Gregory O. Olson

The United States military has gained a significant amount of experience, knowledge and best practices from conducting Security Force Assistance (SFA) operations in Iraq and Afghanistan over the last decade. The Department of Defense (DOD) must ensure that the lessons learned from conducting SFA will be captured and be able to be regenerated the next time we are faced with conducting SFA on a large scale. This paper provides an overview of SFA and consists of four main sections. The first outlines the role of security force assistance in stability operations; the second is analysis of SFA using the construct of Doctrine, Organization, Training, Material, Leader Development, Personnel and Facilities (DOTMLPF); the third is SFA effectiveness in recent operations and the fourth is SFA regeneration for future needs.