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Incorporating National Guard divisions into exercises have we established an ARNG trend?

Building on their successful "Warfighter '98 exercise" (WFX 98), the U.S. Army National Guard (ARNG), 40th Infantry Division (ID) Mechanized (M), kicked it up a notch in June 1999 by fighting as the U.S. Army Forces (ARFOR) Headquarters at "Roving Sands '99" (RS 99), conducted at Fort Bliss, Texas. This was the first time that a National Guard division participated in an operational level exercise as an ARFOR headquarters. With the U.S. Army at its lowest strength in recent years, we must incorporate National Guard divisions into exercises, in part because it provides the Guard units with access to the latest technologies. For this reason, it is more advantageous for a National Guard battle captain to work with the same intelligence indicators that their active duty counterparts use.

Exercise Participants

The 40th ID's Active Component (AC) teaming headquarters (III Corps) and teamed division (4th ID [M]) augmented the division's efforts with several Army Tactical Command and Control Systems (ATCCSs). The soldiers of the Sunburst Division's Analysis and Control Element (ACE) met the challenge head-on and achieved a high level of proficiency on the borrowed operating systems.

RS 99 was a Commander in Chief, U.S. Atlantic Command-sponsored, U.S. Army Forces Command-executed joint theater air and missile defense field training exercise employing U.S. joint and multinational forces. RS 99, executed 15 through 28 June 1999, witnessed a successful integration of both AC and Reserve Component (RC) members of all the military services. Unfortunately, due to the crises in Kosovo, elements of the 8th Air Force abruptly pulled out of the exercise. The 8th Air Force and other higher headquarters units significantly adjusted their commitment to RS 99 by sending response cells. Only the 40th ID (M) and 32d Army Air Missile Defense Command (a modified table of organization and equipment [MTOE]-structured AC/RC unit) sent a full complement of division-level players.

Support Provided

III Corps augmented the ARFOR ACE with the All-Source Analysis System (ASAS) Remote Workstation (RWS), unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), and Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System (Joint STARS) operators. A team of five officers and noncommissioned officers (NCOs) from the 104th Military Intelligence (MI) Battalion, 4th ID (M), also supported the 40th ID (M) on the exercise. On four different occasions before and during the exercise, the team trained and guided the 40th ID (M) through the growing pains of standing up an ARFOR ACE. This teaming effort closely compares to the 1st Cavalry Division's efforts to prepare the 49th Armored Division, Texas ARNG, for their Bosnian ARFOR headquarters mission early in 1999.

Contractor support at RS 99 was extensive. During their last WFX, the 40th ID (M) relied exclusively on one contractor to help incorporate their Warlord Notebooks (WLNB) into the architecture of the G2 section and makeshift ACE (seven of eight National Guard divisions are still missing an ACE in their current MTOEs). In contrast, during RS 99, the ACE received contractor support from seven companies. The Battle Command Training Program (BCTP) Operations Group D, from Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, rounded out the expertise necessary to prepare for RS 99.

Added Collection and Processing Equipment Enhanced Operations

Just before the exercise, the Division received three ASAS RWS systems that III Corps dedicated to help the ARFOR ACE receive and parse the large volume of data it would have to process. The 40th ID (M) matched those three Sun Microsystems with three of their own, modified the architecture from an entirely WLNB configuration, and fielded a complete, RWS-configured ACE. WLNBs became a secondary means to process data, which we used as imagery intelligence (IMINT) sidebar workstations. The rest of the systems included a Joint STARS Workstation (JSWS), two HUNTER UAV baseline systems, COLISEUM (Community On-Line Intelligence System for End Users and Managers) software, and the Advance Field Artillery Tactical Data System (AFATDS). These added systems were a revelation for most of the ARNG soldiers who had not seen them before.

The ASAS substitute system, WLNB, significantly challenges ACE battle captains that participate in a typical ARNG division WFX. They must rely solely on these single-source workstations to sift through the massive volume of text messages and push the pertinent intelligence to the all-source section. By then, hopefully, the battle captain, all-source analysts, and order of battle (OB) technicians would have developed an accurate graphical intelligence summary (INTSUM), updated their superiors, and adjusted the collection plan accordingly.

Today's intelligence community has better collection assets at its disposal. IMINT has readily become one of the customer's preferred choices for intelligence. In addition to human intelligence (HUMINT), time-sensitive IMINT is a necessity for decision-maker's use to adjust their plans or approve targets for engagement. The old proverb, "A picture is worth a thousand words," is alive and well at any level ACE. ACE personnel should be able to step back and visually monitor the moving target indicators (MTIs) on the JSWS, dynamically retask collection assets if necessary, keep analysts focused on the commander's priority intelligence requirements (PIR), and constantly feed the targeting cell. They should be aware, however, that in a heavy-text message environment, the battle captain could easily fall into the trap of focusing on the monitor and lose sight of the big picture, crippling his ability to orchestrate the ACE.

Conclusion

The current Army multicomponent concept can only work in the military intelligence (MI) community if ARNG division personnel have opportunities to work with the AC in a modern architectural environment like RS 99. The upcoming deployment of the 49th Armored Division to Bosnia-Herzegovina demonstrates a need for such training. Another purpose for expanding on this trend is to assist our AC teaming partners. Shortfalls in MI soldier retention have forced many AC units to seek qualified National Guard personnel that can step into a job and hit the ground running. Teaming Guard divisions with AC units and giving them the experience of a joint exercise have established a trend that can enable the Army to meet its future requirements.

Captain John Bento graduated from Rhode Island College with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Soviet Studies and from Monterey Peninsula College with an Associate of Arts degree in Russian Language. He received his Reserve Officer Training Corps commission from Providence College and is currently serving as the Tactical Intelligence Officer for the Division Tactical Command Post, 40th Infantry Division (Mechanized), California Army National Guard (CA ARNG). He is also the division's full-time U.S. Army Guard and Reserve (AGR) Deputy G2. Readers can reach CPT Bento via E-mail at FAWARRIOR@AOL.COM.
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Article Details
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Title Annotation:Army National Guard
Author:Bento, John C.
Publication:Military Intelligence Professional Bulletin
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Jan 1, 2002
Words:1090
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