Thursday, November 5, 2009

Lessons from 4/1 AD, the first Iraq AAB

From the American Forces Press Service:

WASHINGTON, Nov. 4, 2009 – The first new “advise and assist” brigades already in Iraq and others slated to arrive soon have a big leg up on their new mission, thanks to the groundwork laid by the “Highlander” brigade, which provided a test bed for the new concept.

The 1st Armored Division’s 4th Brigade has been on the ground in Iraq since April, conducting the initial advise and assist operations to pass on to the first officially designated AAB, explained Army Col. Peter Newell, the brigade commander.

The Defense Department announced in July plans to send four of the new brigades to Iraq beginning this fall to train and mentor Iraqi security forces.

The brigades will focus less on traditional combat operations and more on advising, assisting and developing capabilities within the Iraqi security forces, Newell said. They also will conduct coordinated counterterrorism missions and support the State Department’s provincial reconstruction teams and other U.S. interagency partners in Iraq.

The first units assigned the mission are the 3rd Infantry Division’s 1st and 2nd Brigade Combat Teams based at Fort Stewart Ga., and its 3rd BCT at Fort Benning, Ga.; and the 4th Infantry Division’s 3rd BCT at Fort Carson, Colo. In addition, the 82nd Airborne Division’s 1st Brigade, which recently arrived in Iraq, has taken on the AAB mission.

Of course, you already know all of this, and I've written about the concept and force structure here, here and here. This article is a good summary, though, and has a lot of quotes from the brigade's commander about the challenges of operating in such a radically different way to what a BCT does either during COIN or MCO -- so take a look.

1 comment:

  1. What are the prospects of other countries developing FID focused brigades, or battalions?

    Perhaps countries such as China and India? Perhaps China and India could both dedicate one Army command to international FID. One Corps each to African capacity building, including African Union training, equipping and advising.

    All international FID missions including the small missions the Chinese and Indians have in training the ANSF (India's in country mission is larger than China's) would be under their FID centric Army Commands.