Collective training that challenges soldiers and embraces technology is coming to your post. Commanders, it will be your job to see that it is done right.
That is the message of Gen. Robert Cone, commanding general of Training and Doctrine Command, as he lays out the vision for 21st-century training.
“The world as we have known it for 10 years … will change on New Year’s Eve,” Cone told a packed house attending the Maneuver Conference outside Fort Benning in mid-September. The New Year brings with it a transition out of Iraq and a sweeping return to training for unified operations in the full spectrum, specifically offensive, defensive and stability operations. Expect a lot of training in leadership principles, the profession of arms, autonomous squad operations, combined arms maneuver and wide-area security.
Interesting article. Two major takeaways. First, the swing back from a COIN focus with brigades tending to prep for their next deployment, with an extremely focused set of training tasks, back to a generic full-spectrum training schedule.
Secondly, the complaint that commanders have declined ownership of training. I’m pretty sure there’s any number of leaders who don’t subscribe to GEN Cone’s description. Having said that, if brigade tells battalion what it’s Mission Essential Task List is gonna be, there’s only so much ownership the battalion commander has.
There’s another tiny tidbit that was interesting. The idea of placing a specific geographic focus on training for individual brigades. The Army has any number of officers who serve as experts in specific geographical areas. Rotating them back to units, or having them serve as subject matter experts, to prep units for possible deployment to a specific region makes sense. The units would still have to be prepared to deploy anywhere, anytime, but if you can get a leg up on the most likely area, why not?