Fire support for irregular warfare
Bracco, Jeffrey A.
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More than six years after the terrorist attacks on the United States and the initial invasion of Afghanistan, the U.S. military finds itself fully engaged in two large-scale combat operations and numerous smaller-scale operations around the globe. The U.S. military that went to war in 2001 was not optimally designed to fight against well entrenched insurgent forces, often fighting in urban terrain. The enemy's ability to adapt to our tactics has been impressive, which in turn drives our need for innovation. Advances made in precision guided munitions, satellite imagery available to the foot soldier, and networked fires have increased the lethality of indirect fires. At the same time, these advances have reduced the risk of collateral damage as well as improved the safety margins for friendly troops. The purpose of this thesis is to examine how artillery has been used in irregular conflicts over the past century, and how our current capabilities can be best utilized by applying the lessons learned from these previous conflicts. The combination of new technologies and applied lessons from previous irregular conflicts will help us develop the most appropriate application of artillery assets when conducting irregular warfare.
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