Pentathletes in the 82nd Airborne Division: developing critical capabilities for the Army.This interview was conducted just before Major General Caldwell gave up command of the 82nd Airborne Division on 7 April.
Q You directed your division artillery Artillery that is permanently an integral part of a division. For tactical purposes, all artillery placed under the command of a division commander is considered division artillery. (Div Arty DIV ARTY Division Artillery ) commander (Colonel Victor Petrenko) to transition the Div Arty into the division's 4th Brigade Combat Team The brigade combat team (BCT) is the basic deployable unit of maneuver in the US Army. A brigade combat team consists of one combat arms branched maneuver brigade, and its attached support and fire units. (modular 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) ) and become its first commander. Do you think that Field Artillery officers should be eligible for Department of the Army (DA) selection to BCT commands?
A We must pick the most capable, qualified person to command our troops, regardless of branch. Branch designations should not be inhibitors for BCT commands. So the answer is, "Yes."
Like the Chief of Staff [of the Army] said, we in the 82nd Airborne Division develop "Pentathletes." We take people who already arc proficient in their basic branches and have excellent skill sets and begin developing them into Pentathletes--we give them additional challenging responsibilities that broaden their career scopes.
For example, we take young FA officers who already have commanded a battery very successfully and give them second commands of headquarters companies in infantry battalions or troops in RSTA RSTA reconnaissance, surveillance, and target acquisition (US DoD)
RSTA Rindge School of Technical Arts
RSTA Recinto Santo Tomás de Aquino
RSTA Reston Swim Team Association
RSTA Rockford Science and Technology Academy [reconnaissance, surveillance and target acquisition For the RSTA/ISTAR/STA doctrine, see .
For Artillery STA, see .
For the USMC snipers, see . ] battalions. We've taken an Artillery major who already had served successfully as a Div Arty S3 and on the division staff and made him a BCT XO [executive officer]. We made Major [Promotable Jeffrey M.] Jeff Sanborn an infantry brigade executive officer for a year because he was the most qualified person I had to serve in that position. And DA has endorsed my confidence in Jeff by selecting him to command an Artillery battalion.
Our 3rd Battalion, 319th Airborne Field Artillery Regiment [3-319 AFAR], the Gun Devils, deployed to Afghanistan to work for the 173rd Airborne Brigade and did an absolutely superb job as a ground maneuver force--in addition to providing indirect fires. [Lieutenant Colonel Bertrand A. Ges] Bert Ges [Commander of 3-319 AFAR] trained the Redlegs in one of his [105-mm] batteries as 155-mm gunners, and they conducted fire missions with M198 155s the entire year in Afghanistan. He also employed a 105-mm battery in Afghanistan and integrated infantry units into his battalion task force. He is a very competent officer who happens to be Artillery by trade.
I think I've got the best Artillerymen in the United States Army United States Army
Major branch of the U.S. military forces, charged with preserving peace and security and defending the nation. The first regular U.S. fighting force, the Continental Army, was organized by the Continental Congress on June 14, 1775, to supplement local in the 82nd Division because they are so versatile and adaptable. It starts at the most senior levels with [Brigadier General James A.] Jim Cerrone, who worked for me as my Assistant Division Commander [ADC (1) See A/D converter.
(2) (Apple Display Connector) A peripheral connector from Apple that combines digital video display, USB and power in one cable. ] for Support for one year, and I was blessed enough to keep him here as my ADC for Operations. My other DCG DCG - Definite Clause Grammar , [Brigadier General] Rodney Anderson, also is a Field Artilleryman. I served in the 25th Infantry Division when he was the Div Arty commander there. These officers are versatile, precise and capable--have done absolutely fabulous jobs.
My division command sergeant major is a Field Artilleryman: Wolf Amacker. In my 30 years in the Army, I've never had more respect or admiration for an NCO NCO
NCO noncommissioned officer
NCO n abbr (Mil) (= noncommissioned officer) → Uffz. than I do Wolf. He gets up everyday saying, "What can I do for paratroopers today?"
But I didn't choose any of these outstanding leaders for positions in the division because they were Field Artillerymen; I chose them because they were the best men to do the jobs. It is critical that we grow multi-talented Soldiers and leaders into adaptable, flexible Pentathletes.
For the past two years, we have done what the Chief of Staff said and developed Pentathletes. We've been doing that in every area, not just with Artillerymen. We've taken Armor officers and some aviators Well-known aviators
People largely known for their contributions to the history of aviation
While all of these people were pilots (and some still are), many are also noted for contributions in areas such as aircraft design and manufacturing, navigation or and put them in infantry brigade headquarters.
The reason we must do that is because we have seen in our deployments into Iraq and Afghanistan, time and time again, nobody executes standard missions. Everything has become non-standard.
And our deployments have been significant. We've deployed and redeployed 13,000 of our Soldiers into the CENT-COM [Central Command] theater--almost the entire division (which is roughly 15,000 Soldiers).
We, literally, have had a deployed Artillery battery commander fire FA or coordinate for indirect fire in support of a ground maneuver element in the morning and coordinate with some mullah mullah
Muslim title applied to a scholar or religious leader, especially in the Middle East and the Indian subcontinent. It means “lord” and has also been used in North Africa as an honorific attached to the name of a king, sultan, or member of the nobility. for passageways for our forces through his area in the afternoon. The next day, he led a CMO CMO
See: Collateralized mortgage obligation
See collateralized mortgage obligation (CMO). [civil-military operations] team into a village and then commanded a ground maneuver convoy in the afternoon--then the next morning he was back in his headquarters.
The days when we could take an Artillery officer--any officer--and have him or her specialize in one skill set are gone. We don't have that luxury anymore. He or she has to be a Pentathlete pen·tath·lete
An athlete who participates in a pentathlon.
Noun 1. pentathlete - an athlete who competes in a pentathlon
athlete, jock - a person trained to compete in sports on the battlefield. We must train Soldiers and leaders at home station to develop the Pentathlete skills and mindset mind·set or mind-set
1. A fixed mental attitude or disposition that predetermines a person's responses to and interpretations of situations.
2. An inclination or a habit. . We can't wait until they're in combat.
Q How is the 82nd Division training Field Artillerymen to ensure they are proficient at providing fires?
A Because we have such well trained Field Artillerymen, we routinely have training exercises with some danger-close live-fire missions.
Years ago, the Artillery community in the 82nd Airborne Division developed a "Red Book." It has all the standards, requirements and expectations for every Artilleryman who's a part of the division--from individual to collective tasks. It's our Bible, and we don't deviate from it.
We deployed 10 battalion task forces to Iraq or Afghanistan in the last two years, and Field Artillerymen were in every task force. Those task forces counted on their Artillerymen to provide close and indirect fires. As the task force commanders reported to me, they understood and appreciated the value their Field Artillerymen brought. That is due, at least in part, to the fires training we conduct in the division.
In the 82nd Airborne Division, we have combined-arms live-fire exercises [CALFEXs]. These are not battalion CALFEXs but company CALFEXs where we integrate 60- and 81-mm mortars, 105-mm howitzers, attack helicopters and close air support [CAS]--rotary-wing CAS at a minimum. That's very complex for the company level, requiring the best possible Artillerymen to integrate and work all those fires for their company commanders.
Q As your division is a modular force without a Div Arty, how do you cover the force FA headquarters capabilities, such as ensuring the training and certification of your FA division-wide?
A Our brigade combat team commanders are responsible for the oversight and training of their Artillery battalions. Those are their jobs now. And they've got the Red Book as the non-negotiable standard--which is becoming part of division Regulation 350-1 Training.
It's working, I think in part, because we take Artillerymen who have already proven their branch skill sets in their branch qualification jobs and are putting them in other places in the BCTs. The 2nd BCT's Artillery battalion training is probably just a little better because an Artilleryman is the brigade XO and he can ask the tough detailed questions.
Q What do you think about the joint fires observer (JFO JFO Joint Field Office
JFO Jorja Fox
JFO Just For Openers
JFO Joint Forces Operations
JFO Joint Fires Observers
JFO Joint Flag Officer ) concept?
A I'm a huge fan of the JFO. In the future, we are going to fight joint, so we have to develop the capabilities, such as JFOs, and train to fight joint.
When I got to the division two years ago, we used to have "Large Package Week" once every two or three months. The Air Force would bring in a large package of aircraft for one week, and we'd conduct airborne proficiency training.
But we changed that about a year and a half ago. We now have eight exercises a year, called "joint forcible-entry exercises" incorporating all four services.
Every operation will be joint. No matter what the mission is, at a minimum, we're going to get on Air Force aircraft. We're probably going to need to call for CAS using JFOs, JTACs [joint terminal attack controllers] or Marine ANGLICOs [air naval gunfire liaison company ANGLICO (Air Naval Gunfire Liaison Company) refers to several small units of the United States Marine Corps who specialize in coordinating artillery, naval gunfire and Close Air Support for the U.S. Marine Corps, U.S. Navy, U.S. Army, and allied foreign Armed Forces. ]. We'll be using Navy P3s for imagery.
The joint forcible-entry exercise is one week long. Monday is the coordination phase; then Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday nights we execute the training with a big after-action review on Friday. In those three nights, about 3,500 paratroopers jump. We drop between 20 and 60 heavy pieces of equipment and do anywhere between 20 to 30 air-land operations on dirt strips.
At the same time, we have JSTARS JSTARS Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System [joint surveillance and target attack radar system] overhead with some of our people onboard. We send them for a week's training on JSTARS before they fly on the surveillance aircraft.
If we can't get JSTARS, then we use the Air Force's Jackpot. It's a command and control platform, a tubular unit that you push into the back of a C-130 aircraft. Jackpot has a communications suite to control the battle from the air. Our people get training on Jackpot too.
We also bring in the Air Force Red Horse team, engineers and a CRG CRG Centre for Research on Globalisation
CRG Council for Responsible Genetics
CRG Contingency Response Group
CRG Citizens for Responsible Government
CRG Corporate Renaissance Group
CRG Columbia River Gorge
CRG Consulting Resource Group
CRG Columbia Resource Group , or contingency response group. Once the paratroopers have jumped in and seized an airfield, the CRG lands behind them and assumes control of the airfield.
We start planning each exercise a month in advance. We establish joint objectives, have joint planning conferences and conduct joint rehearsals.
Q Because of issues raised by the 28th Infantry Division, Pennsylvania Army National Guard The Pennsylvania Army National Guard, abbreviated PAARNG, is part of the United States Army National Guard and is based in the U.S. state of Pennsylvania. The PAARNG maintains 124 armories and is present in 87 communities across the commonwealth. , a request is in for the Army to code the BCT deputy commanding officer (DCO DCO Demande Chimique En Oxygène (French)
DCO Digitally Controlled Oscillator
DCO District Coordination Officer (Pakistan)
DCO Defence Community Organisation (Australia) ) position as 02 Officer Generalist. Please comment.
A I agree that the DCO position should be branch-immaterial.
When I needed two DCOs for my brigades, I asked TRADOC TRADOC Training & Doctrine Command (US Army) [Training and Doctrine Command] for a list of two to five stud lieutenant colonels who have been out of the fight in TRADOC assignments for two years. I wanted to take people out of the schoolhouse who had been conducting the training that is so critical to our Army and bring them into the operational force.
TRADOC gave me a list of five great Americans. I selected two from that list who will deploy with their brigades in the next several months. One is coming out of the schoolhouse at Fort Benning, Georgia, and will deploy with one of my BCTs to Iraq as the DCO. The other is coming out of the Airborne School at Fort Benning where he's been teaching airborne students for the last two years. He will deploy to Afghanistan with his BCT as DCO.
Now, both these DCOs turned out to be Infantrymen. But when I asked TRADOC for the list, I specifically said, "I'm not looking for Looking for
In the context of general equities, this describing a buy interest in which a dealer is asked to offer stock, often involving a capital commitment. Antithesis of in touch with. any particular branch. 1 would prefer the list have Infantry, Artillery or Armor officers, but I'm wide open to recommendations." In other words Adv. 1. in other words - otherwise stated; "in other words, we are broke"
put differently , I wanted the best officers for the DCO jobs, regardless of their branches.
Q The guided multiple-launch rocket system (GMLRS GMLRS Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System ) unitary (no duds), a precision-guided munition (PGM PGM Program
PGM Pragmatic General Multicast
PgM Program Manager
PGM Platinum Group Metal
PGM Pagemaker (software)
PGM Portable Gray Map
PGM Precision Guided Munition ), is very precise and has a footprint that is scalable to minimize 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 optimize its use in urban and complex terrain, even when fired from as far away as 70 kilometers. GMLRS was first fired in the CENTCOM CENTCOM US Central Command
CENTCOM Coalition Central Command theater last fall and is being employed by Army and Marine forces with great success today. How important is this precision-guided capability for current and future operations?
A I already have been briefed on GMLRS unitary in preparation for my next assignment in Baghdad [as Deputy Chief of Staff for Strategic Effects for the MultiNational Force-Iraq]. PGMs have had to be aerial-delivered by Air Force platforms. We now have an all-weather, 24/7 capability we can employ from extended distances that we've never had before. That is incredible.
GMLRS unitary is a critical force multiplier for the ground maneuver commander. (Notice I did not say "infantry commander" but "ground maneuver commander"--whoever that is.)
Q In recent testing, the new all-weather 155-mm Excalibur unitary, also a PGM, has done very well, impacting within four meters of the center of a 20-by-20-meter structure when fired from 19 kilometers away. This munition can range to 40 kilometers and has a near vertical trajectory for use in urban or close terrain operations or in close support of troops. It is projected for fielding in the CENTCOM theater in the First Quarter of FY07. How important will this organic capability be to ground force operations in CENTCOM?
A I'm very familiar with Excalibur unitary. For the first time, we have an all-weather, fire-and-forget cannon munition.
The ground force maneuver commander now has control of a 24/7 PGM capability.
In combat in Iraq and Afghanistan, our troops repeatedly receive fire from places that they don't want to return fire with artillery because of the collateral damage that would occur. Now the commander has the option of using cannons immediately with minimum collateral damage and close to friendly forces, which translates into saving American Soldiers' and Iraqis' lives.
Q What message would you like to send Army and Marine Field Artillerymen stationed around the world?
A In my experience, you Field Artillerymen have proven to be multi-talented Pentathletes. In selecting officers and command sergeants major for challenging positions, branch should be immaterial. The decision should be about the qualifications and competence of the officer or NCO leader being considered for the position. When we select high-performers for "cross-branch" positions, then we are growing Pentathletes for the Army.
Major General William B. Caldwell Lieutenant General William B. Caldwell IV is an American military officer who until June 2007 served as chief spokesman and Deputy Chief of Staff for Strategic Effects for the Multi-National Force in Iraq. IV is the former Commander of the 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, North Carolina
Fort Bragg is a major United States Army installation, in Cumberland and Hoke Counties, North Carolina, U.S. , and now is the Deputy Chief of Staff for Strategic Effects in the Multinational Force-Iraq. In previous assignments, he was the Senior Military Assistant to the Deputy Secretary of Defense in the Pentagon and Deputy Director of Operations, J-3, US Pacific Command at Camp H.M. Smith in Hawaii. Also in Hawaii, he was the Assistant Division Commander for Operations of the 25th Infantry Division (Light) at Schofield Barracks bar·rack 1
tr.v. bar·racked, bar·rack·ing, bar·racks
To house (soldiers, for example) in quarters.
1. A building or group of buildings used to house military personnel. , the division in which he commanded his battalion. He served as the Executive Assistant to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff is by law the highest ranking overall military officer of the United States military, and the principal military adviser to the President of the United States. as well as the Chief of the Strategic Concepts Branch in the Office of the Director for Strategic Plans and Policy, J-5, on the Joint Staff, both at the Pentagon. He commanded the 1st Brigade, 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry) at Fort Drum, New York This article is about the U.S. Army base in New York State. For other places with a similar name, see Fort Drum.
Fort Drum is a census-designated place and U.S. Army military reservation in Jefferson County, New York, United States. . He is a veteran of Operations Just Cause in Panama, Desert Shield/Storm in Iraq and Restore Hope/Uphold Democracy in Haiti. He holds two master's degrees.
Major General William B. Caldwell IV
Former Commanding General of the 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, North Carolina
Interview by Patrecia Slayden Hollis