Part II: joint effects for the MNC-I in OIF II.This is the second of two interviews with BG Formic for·mic
1. Of or relating to ants.
2. Of, derived from, or containing formic acid.
[From Latin form based on six hours of discussions in March after he returned in February from 13 months in Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF OIF Operation Iraqi Freedom
OIF Organisation Internationale de la Francophonie (French: International Organization of Francophonie)
OIF Office for Intellectual Freedom (American Library Association) ) II. Part I appeared in the May-June edition and focused on the operational environment, organization of his MNC-I MNC-I Multi-National Corps - Iraq Joint Fires Fires produced during the employment of forces from two or more components in coordinated action toward a common objective. See also fires. and Effects Cell (JFEC JFEC Japan Federation of Economic Organizations ), the integration of joint fires and counterstrike operations.
Information Operations Actions taken to affect adversary information and information systems while defending one's own information and information systems. Also called IO. See also defensive information operations; information; offensive information operations; operation. (IO) in the MNC-I. IO is tough, and we had to work at it. As the guy responsible for integrating IO at the corps level, every time I heard someone say, "We are losing the IO war," I cringed.
We go into IO with what seems to be a disadvantage. Coalition Forces are made up of values-based societies that value truth and integrity. The bad guys weren't tied to them. They use their resources to gain control of the Iraqi people with total disregard for Coalition Forces or Iraqi civilians as human beings and little regard for accurately portraying activities as they occurred.
Now, to gain the advantage in IO, we would not forsake our values. In the long term, in the big picture, because we are values-based, truth-based--it is a strategic advantage. But Coalition Force IO takes time, effort and care, and every setback takes time to recover from.
Another fundamental difference between us and the bad guys is that we have an open society. The great strength of our freedom of the press helps make us open ... and invites vulnerabilities. The bad guys don't have an open society--have no inhibitions about using the press (which we won't do), and, therefore, are not as vulnerable to our IO themes and messages as we are to theirs.
An IO Axiom. In my 13 months in Iraq, I observed what I consider to be an IO truth. Our success in IO is based 80 percent on who we are, 15 percent on what we do and five percent on what we say--yet we spend most of our time and energy on what we say.
Now my numbers may not be exactly right and not everyone agrees with me, but that formula, with its general proportions, seems to me to be right. Given that all three are intertwined, who we are influences what we do and say and vice versa VICE VERSA. On the contrary; on opposite sides. , let me explain what I mean.
Who we are has a tremendous impact on our ability to conduct IO--our ability to have an effect on the Iraqi people. The Coalition Force saying something--by handbill HANDBILL. A printed or written notice put up on walls, &c., in order to inform those concerned of something to be done. or radio or a uniformed person face-to-face, while worthwhile and important aspects of our IO program--does not have anywhere near the effect of an Iraqi spokesman, leader or soldier saying the same thing.
We knew that and would have loved to have had an Iraqi spokesman a long time ago. But if you were an Iraqi, you didn't want the job of standing up in front of the media communicating strategic messages about making Iraq a free and democratic nation everyday because it was dangerous for you and your family.
As we transitioned to Iraqi sovereignty in July 2004, more Iraqi government officials began speaking out because they had ownership in the process. The same message articulated by the Iraqi Prime Minister, National Security Advisor A National Security Advisor serves as the chief advisor to a national government on matters of security. He or she is not usually a member of the cabinet but is usually a member of various military or security councils. , a governor, mayor or provincial councilman was far more effective.
The second part of that axiom is what we do. Perfect example: in the first battle of Fallujah As part of the occupation of Iraq, the First Battle of Fallujah, codenamed Operation Vigilant Resolve was an unsuccessful attempt by the United States Military to capture the city of Fallujah in April 2004. [April 2004], a couple of our legitimate targets were in mosques--bad guys were using them to kill Marines and Soldiers. When we attacked an enemy position in a mosque with a 500-pound bomb, we could say all we wanted about how legitimate the target was, how carefully we vetted it during the targeting process and minimized collateral damage collateral damage Surgery A popular term for any undesired but unavoidable co-morbidity associated with a therapy–eg, chemotherapy-induced CD to the BM and GI tract as a side effect of destroying tumor cells , and how much we respect Islam as a religion--regardless, the bad guys could turn our action against us. "We must defend our mosques--they are attacking them!"
In terms of IO, we choose lethal targets very carefully--we might decide not to attack an enemy position in a mosque unless it poses a significant threat to our forces. Those are tough choices that can have IO implications, choices often made by junior leaders on the frontlines on the spot.
Third is what we say, which is the part of IO we spend a lot of time and effort on. I am not saying we don't need to be careful about what we say, quite the contrary. What I am saying is that as an inherently values-based force that respects the lives and rights of others, we can craft what we say effectively and still focus more effort on the other two more important aspects of IO: getting the supported people invested in the process and taking care not to set our efforts back by what we do.
As we saw the transition to Iraqi sovereignty and, especially, as we got closer and closer to national elections in January, the Coalition delivered fewer messages and the Iraqi leaders delivered more--and made the strategic and operational decisions about the future of their country. Who the IO messenger is has a significant effect on the reception of the message. And as Iraqi Security Forces Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) is the Multi-National Force-Iraq umbrella name for the military and police forces that serve under the Government of Iraq.
The armed forces are administered by the Ministry of Defense (MOD), and the Iraqi Police is administered by the Ministry of [ISF ISF - Information Systems Factory ] began executing more military operations This is a list of missions, operations, and projects. Missions in support of other missions are not listed independently. World War I
''See also List of military engagements of World War I
Corps IO Operations. There's a difference in the IO perspective at the strategic level, the multinational force and higher, and IO in the corps and divisions--all the way down into the battalions where everybody does IO.
The challenge at the tactical level is units faced different threats and levels of Iraqi support, depending on the area of operations An operational area defined by the joint force commander for land and naval forces. Areas of operation do not typically encompass the entire operational area of the joint force commander, but should be large enough for component commanders to accomplish their missions and protect their . So, at the corps level, we decentralized de·cen·tral·ize
v. de·cen·tral·ized, de·cen·tral·iz·ing, de·cen·tral·iz·es
1. To distribute the administrative functions or powers of (a central authority) among several local authorities. much of IO execution down to the major subordinate commands [MSCs].
The role of the corps IO was to facilitate MSC (1) (MSC.Software Corporation, Santa Ana, CA, www.mscsoftware.com) Founded in 1963 by Richard H. MacNeal and Robert G. Schwendler, MSC is the world's largest provider of mechanical computer aided engineering (MCAE) strategies, simulation software and services. engagements and develop talking points or other products consistent with MNF-I's [MultiNational Force-Iraq's] strategic communication themes and to share those themes to meet IO challenges across the MSC boundaries. If an IO challenge did not cross MSC boundaries, was unique to one MSC, then that MSC was better qualified to work the unique IO issue in its own battlespace. But it was a corps IO solution to provide talking points to our MSCs that articulated actions in another MSC, so they could integrate the talking points into their respective IO programs.
IO is very, very important for lethal and nonlethal operations across the spectrum. Our corps or three-star UExs or UEys, our operational level fighting headquarters, each must have an IO component robust enough to conduct operations effectively. That component must be resourced with trained joint personnel and stabilized--not an ad hoc For this purpose. Meaning "to this" in Latin, it refers to dealing with special situations as they occur rather than functions that are repeated on a regular basis. See ad hoc query and ad hoc mode. organization. In my view, IO with related components, such as CMO CMO
See: Collateralized mortgage obligation
See collateralized mortgage obligation (CMO). [civil-military operations] and PSYOP [psychological operations], should be in the JFEC, the corps' effects organization.
The Second Battle of Fallujah This article or section is in need of attention from an expert on the subject.
Please help recruit one or [ improve this article] yourself. See the talk page for details. [November 2004].
The second battle of Fallujah was a tremendous success. The IMEF IMEF I Marine Expeditionary Force [I Marine Expeditionary Force The 1st Marine Expeditionary Force is a Marine Air Ground Task Force (MAGTF) of the United States Marine Corps primarily composed of the 1st Marine Division, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, and 1st Marine Logistics Group. ] was absolutely brilliant in planning the operational/tactical-level fight in Fallujah across the spectrum of operations: CMO, IO, lethal effects and tactical ops.
IMEF used the full array of combined arms and was fully joint. For example, IMEF fought with Army infantry platoons inside Marine battalions and Marine infantrymen inside Army BCTs [brigade combat teams].
There was a lot of joint individual augmentation. For example, the IMEF's 1st Marine Division needed a targeting officer, so one of our Army captains from the corps FSE FSE
1. feline spongiform encephalopathy.
2. focal symmetrical encephalomalacia. [fire support element] worked in the 1st Marine Division's FSE for the entire battle of Fallujah Battle of Fallujah may refer to one of the following: Persian Gulf War
In Fallujah, Iraqi Security Forces were integrated into the IMEF's tactical fighting formations. In the western part of Fallujah, one of the first operations in the campaign was the Iraqis' recapturing a hospital. The ISF fought well in Fallujah.
The joint and Coalition integration and the cooperation among the US Army's 1st Infantry and 1st Cavalry Divisions, our Iraqi and other Coalition Forces, US Special Operations Forces Those Active and Reserve Component forces of the Military Services designated by the Secretary of Defense and specifically organized, trained, and equipped to conduct and support special operations. Also called SOF. [SOF SOF
sound on film ] and IMEF in Fallujah demonstrated trust and confidence across the force as a truly multinational force--it is one of the things I am most proud of as I consider the corps' successes in Iraq.
Although we truly operated as a multinational force, it took a lot of work to develop that confidence and knowledge of each other, specifically when integrating joint fires. The IMEF had Marines fixed-wing, rotary-wing and Army and Marine FA inside the MEF MEF Marine Expeditionary Force
MEF Metro Ethernet Forum
MEF Ministerio de Economía y Finanzas (Spanish)
MEF Mobile Entertainment Forum
MEF Middle East Forum (think tank) . It also had Navy air support, and the 9th Air Force from CENTCOM's [Central Command's] Air Component Command provided air fires for a surge capability. In Fallujah, we brought every joint asset to bear to take away the enemy's safe-havens.
Simultaneously, we had corps operations going on throughout the battlespace. And we knew insurgent INSURGENT. One who is concerned in an insurrection. He differs from a rebel in this, that rebel is always understood in a bad sense, or one who unjustly opposes the constituted authorities; insurgent may be one who justly opposes the tyranny of constituted authorities. activities from Fallujah would spill over into other areas. So, at the MNC-I, the ASOC ASOC Antarctic and Southern Ocean Coalition
ASOC Air Support Operations Center
ASOC Advanced Separation of Concerns (Aspect-Oriented Software Development)
ASOC Air Sovereignty Operations Center
ASOC Australian Standard Offence Classification [air support operations center The principal air control agency of the theater air control system responsible for the direction and control of air operations directly supporting the ground combat element. It processes and coordinates requests for immediate air support and coordinates air missions requiring integration ] established procedures to provide CAS [close air support] rapidly in response to troops in trouble in key areas on the ground, such as in Mosul, Baghdad and out to the west by Al Qaim. That allowed IMEF air assets to focus support on Fallujah.
The corps ALO [air liaison officer The senior tactical air control party member attached to a ground unit who functions as the primary advisor to the ground commander on air power. An air liaison officer is usually an aeronautically rated officer. Also called ALO. See also liaison. ], Colonel Dave Belote, did a tremendous job of working with the MEF's Marine air wing to support the air battlespace over Fallujah. As a result, the MEF was able to optimize the capabilities and employment of joint air assets and UAVs [unmanned aerial vehicles
We also shot a lot of precise Army and Marine Field Artillery in Fallujah, most of it in very close support of troops in urban operations. When you only are shooting a couple of guns at a time (as in Fallujah)--not a battalion six [all guns, six rounds]--you can be very precise with your fire. Marine artillery fired danger close to Soldiers and Army artillery fired danger close to Marines.
The MEF employed FA in a nonstandard non·stan·dard
1. Varying from or not adhering to the standard: nonstandard lengths of board.
2. technique that was very effective in urban operations. FA shot VT [variable time] fuze fuze
n. & v.
Variant of fuse1.
Noun 1. fuze - any igniter that is used to initiate the burning of a propellant
fuse, primer, priming, fuzee, fusee munitions mu·ni·tion
War materiel, especially weapons and ammunition. Often used in the plural.
tr.v. mu·ni·tioned, mu·ni·tion·ing, mu·ni·tions
To supply with munitions. two blocks from advancing Coalition Forces, providing air bursts to suppress the enemy at their strongpoints. This also minimized collateral damage.
During shaping operations, there was tension between the tactical, operational and strategic levels of targeting in Fallujah. The tactical units wanted to attack every target on the ground with air-delivered munitions; at the operational and strategic levels, decision makers had to be careful not to win the tactical battle yet lose the strategic war for Fallujah. Not every valid tactical target warrants a 500-pound inside the city limits of Fallujah.
Fallujah was a great study in strategic, operational and tactical levels of command.
IO Threshold in the Battle of Fallujah. This was a phenomenon we observed in the second battle of Fallujah--Lieutenant General [Thomas F.] Metz [Commander of the MNC-I] coined the term "IO threshold." It describes the level of intensity in combat operations that we had to stay below to win the IO fight.
The two battles of Fallujah serve as great examples. In the first two or three days of the first battle (April 2004), our decisive operations were below the IO threshold. But then every time we attacked certain targets or caused a level of destruction, there were protests in the streets or we were criticized in the Arab and other international media.
Frequently in the first battle of Fallujah, we were attacked by insurgents Insurgents, in U.S. history, the Republican Senators and Representatives who in 1909–10 rose against the Republican standpatters controlling Congress, to oppose the Payne-Aldrich tariff and the dictatorial power of House speaker Joseph G. Cannon. in mosques. It legally eliminated the protective status of the mosque and made it a legitimate target--and we went through great pains to avoid destroying a mosque. But we did use precision air-delivered bombs on some mosques that had insurgents inside who were killing our troops.
Every time we did, we crossed the IO threshold. No matter what we said, the IO effect was troublesome, especially with the Iraqi and other Arab populations.
So the intent in the second battle of Fallujah was to employ precision munitions for shaping fires at a level of intensity that stayed below the IO threshold. Then we would employ a lot of combat power, everything available to us, in decisive operations for a period of days, recognizing that we would exceed the threshold for that time. Next we would bring the intensity of combat operations down below the IO threshold before it could have a negative impact on our ability to execute any decisive ops. That way, the 1st Marine Division could win the battle for Fallujah, and we could still get down below the IO threshold.
But, in my judgment, we never exceeded the IO threshold in Fallujah, even during decisive ops. In hindsight, I think the MEF's very precise shaping operations in conjunction with SOF and the broader strategic to tactical IO campaign from April to the second battle of Fallujah in November raised the IO threshold. People--Iraqis, regional neighbors, Coalition, US--recognized that Fallujah was a terrorist safe haven, a problem that had to be dealt with. People understood why we were in Fallujah and, therefore, we didn't exceed the IO threshold, even when our operations were intense.
We realized that when we first hit an enemy position in a mosque. There was no negative reaction to it, and we didn't have to defend our actions.
Decisive operations, again, were so well orchestrated and so focused by the IMEF that they occurred in a short period of time, which contributed. As a result, Coalition Forces in Fallujah won the IO war.
Our evaluation of the IO threshold caused us to adjust the meter of lethal fires; it became a inechanism for integrating lethal and nonlethal effects--a very powerful concept.
Force FA Headquarters (FFA FFA free fatty acids. HQ). I am convinced of the necessity for FFA HQs at every level of the tactical and operational force. The FFA HQ is required for two critical functions and brings a third benefit, a bonus of command and control flexibility, to the operational level of command. As we move toward modularity, we must retain the FFA HQ's capabilities.
First the FFA HQ is the core of the JFEC. It integrates and synchronizes joint fires and effects for the force. At all levels, the FFA HQ must integrate or apply joint fires and plan and execute IO that is integrated with other nonlethal means and do them all seamlessly.
For example, we found that the four- and five-man battalion and brigade FSEs in Iraq were responsible for IO and CMO in addition to their lethal requirements--they were meeting themselves coming and going. When the unit needed mortar, FA or air fires, the FSE had to coordinate for them. And when there was a countermortar or counterrocket fight--and most brigades and battalions had them--then the FSE had to manage that.
All that might be okay when we're fighting an insurgency, but a four- or five-man team's fulfilling those critical roles around the clock in more high-intensity military engagements will be impossible.
Second, the FFA HQ at every level commands and controls FA assets for the force. For example, when the DS [direct support] FA battalion served as a maneuver battalion, it was challenged to also perform its functions as the FFA HQ. It still had to ensure the brigade's Hot Platoon or Hot Battery met the five requirements of accurate, predicted fire; the unit was certified to fire; the "gunner" was trained well enough to step up to the "section chief's" position if the section chief was injured by an IED Noun 1. IED - an explosive device that is improvised
I.E.D., improvised explosive device
explosive device - device that bursts with sudden violence from internal energy [improvised explosive device Noun 1. improvised explosive device - an explosive device that is improvised
explosive device - device that bursts with sudden violence from internal energy ]; the targeting process that leads to the delivery of fires was executed correctly; and the radars available to the BCT BCT Brigade Combat Team
BCT Basic Combat Training
BCT Best Conventional Pollutant Control Technology (EPA)
BCT Business Cards Tomorrow
BCT Banque Centrale de Tunisie (Central Bank of Tunisia) were maintained and positioned for maximum coverage. These are all functions of the FFA HQ and core competencies of the FA.
Third, the bonus benefit, the FFA HQ gives the operational level headquarters the flexibility to employ a command and control headquarters without having to pull one of its maneuver units away from conducting its missions.
For example, at the corps level in August 2004, the Iraqis requested help in Al Kut near the Iranian border as the Muqtada Al-Sadr militia threatened stability in Iraq. So MNC-I shifted 1st Battalion, 23d Infantry (1-23 IN), 3d Stryker BCT, 2d Infantry Division, from Mosul to Al Kut--an extremely well trained and disciplined unit. It was reinforced with six Kiowa Warrior helicopters from 1-25 AV in the 1stCav and SOF.
MNC-I sent the corps FFA HQ to Al Kut to serve as the command and control headquarters for that force; Task Force Thunder. The headquarters was built around the MNC-I corps artillery group, including the command judge advocate A legal adviser on the staff of a military command. A designated officer of the Judge Advocate General's Corps (JAGC) of the U.S. Army, Navy, Air Force, or Marine Corps. and the corps artillery G3, G2 and G6 sections. We were augmented with additional officers and NCOs from the corps ALO, IO cell, civil affairs, public affairs, intel and logisticians.
For about two weeks, I commanded Task Force Thunder at Al Kut. We provided the enablers that facilitated 1-23 IN's tactical operations with joint fires, lethal targeting, nonlethal effects and logistical support. We also interfaced with the Ukrainian brigade and multinational division in the area, the local provincial government and the Iraqi police and National Guard.
Although there never was a major fight in Al Kut, I believe the presence of the very visible, combat-capable Stryker task force, in conjunction with SOF, conducting multiple operations throughout the province plus the CMO and IO effects on the local populace drove the Sadr militia to ground.
The FFA HQ at the operational level provided that additional command and control capability. In his article in the May-June edition, the 1st Infantry Division Artillery Commander Colonel Rich Longo relates a similar capability that his FFA HQ provided in An Najaf.
All in all, we left fairly satisfied with the work we did in Iraq as a joint fires and effects cell and as an FFA HQ for MNC-I. We are confident that the XVIII Airborne Corps Artillery will continue to improve the operations, and we'll learn from them.
Brigadier General Richard P. Formica commanded the Force FA Headquarters and Joint Fires and Effects Cell in the MultiNational Corps in Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom II. While deployed, he conducted split-based operations as the Commander of III Corps Artillery at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, a command he relinquished in June. Currently he is the Director of Force Management in the Army G3 at the Pentagon.
Brigadier General Richard P. Formica
Former Commander of the Force FA Headquarters (FFA HQ) and Joint Fires and Effects Coordinator, MultiNational Corps, Iraq (MNC-I)
Interview by Patrecia Slayden Hollis, Editor