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Impact of Mission Command on Operations

This compilation of works consists mainly of articles from Military Review, publications authored by the Combat Studies Institute, monographs from students at the Command and General Staff College, and selected works from other sources for which we have permission to reproduce.

The Army University Press invites readers to submit for publishing consideration articles to Military Review or longer works to the Combat Studies Institute on issues related to Mission Command for submission on the Army University Press website at http://www.armyupress.army.mil/Publish-With-Us/.


 

 

Army U Press Content

Reinvigorating the Army’s Approach to Command and Control Training for Mission Command (Part 3)

Reinvigorating the Army’s Approach to Command and Control

Training for Mission Command (Part 3)

By Gen. Stephen J. Townsend, U.S. Army
Maj. Gen. Douglas C. Crissman, U.S. Army
Col. Jason C. Slider, U.S. Army
Col. Keith Nightingale, U.S. Army, Retired

In the third of three articles on mission command, the former commander of U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command and his fellow authors discuss how, as with any task or battle drill, soldiers and units must train and practice extensively to enable a culture of mission command and disciplined initiative.

Published Online Exclusive Articles 17 July 2019

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Reinvigorating the Army’s Approach to Mission Command and Control Leading by Mission Command (Part 2)

Reinvigorating the Army’s Approach to Command and Control

Leading by Mission Command (Part 2)

By Gen. Stephen Townsend, U.S. Army
Maj. Gen. Gary Brito, U.S. Army
Maj. Gen. Douglas Crissman, U.S. Army
Maj. Kelly McCoy, U.S. Army

In this follow-up to an article published in the May-June issue of Military Review, the commander of U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command and his fellow authors discuss how effective, successful leadership is the result of using mission command.

Published Online Exclusive Articles 31 May 2019

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Reinvigorating the Army’s Approach to Mission Command It’s Okay to Run with Scissors (Part 1)

Reinvigorating the Army’s Approach to Mission Command

It’s Okay to Run with Scissors (Part 1)

Gen. Stephen Townsend, U.S. Army
Maj. Gen. Douglas Crissman, U.S. Army
Maj. Kelly McCoy, U.S. Army

The mission command philosophy is the U.S. Army’s approach to command and control. It empowers subordinate decision-making and decentralized execution, using mission orders to enable disciplined initiative in accomplishment of the commander’s intent.

Published Online Exclusive Articles 9 April 2019

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The U.S. Army and Mission Command Philosophy versus Practice

The U.S. Army and Mission Command

Philosophy versus Practice

Maj. Brett Matzenbacher, U.S. Army

According to this author, the Army could successfully adopt mission command as its overarching command philosophy by using a more precise definition of mission command and by aligning professional military education with it.

Published Military Review March-April 2018, pg 61

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The Mission Command of Islamic State Deconstructing the Myth of Lone Wolves in the Deep Fight

The Mission Command of Islamic State

Deconstructing the Myth of Lone Wolves in the Deep Fight

1st Lt. Michael P. Ferguson, U.S. Army

The author contends the Islamic State uses a mission command philosophy, and so-called lone wolf attacks in Western countries are in fact deep attacks with strategic implications.

Published Military Review, September-October 2017, pg 68

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The Practical Application of Followership Theory in Mission Command

The Practical Application of Followership Theory in Mission Command

Lt. Col. Mikail Kalimuddin
Singapore Army

The author contends the Islamic State uses a mission command philosophy, and so-called lone wolf attacks in Western countries are in fact deep attacks with strategic implications.

Published Online Exclusive Articles 29 September 2017

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Soldiers with 2nd Squadron, 2nd Cavalry Regiment dismount their Stryker combat vehicle to join Bulgarian army special forces soldiers as they conduct a cordon-and-search during Kabile 15, a multilateral joint-training exercise, as part of Operation Atlantic Resolve 17 June 2015 at Novo Selo Training Area, Bulgaria. (Photo by Spc. Jacqueline Dowland, U.S. Army)

Leeroy Jenkins and Mission Command

Maj. Robert R. Phillipson, U.S. Army

The author uses an infamous story of Leeroy Jenkins in an online game of War of Worldcraft to raise important points about some current holes in conveying commander's intent to subordinates.

Published Online Exclusive Articles 16 May 2017

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Mission Command in the 21st Century Empowering to Win in a Complex World

Mission Command in the 21st Century

Empowering to Win in a Complex World

Foreword by Lt. Gen. Robert B. Brown

Lt. Gen. Robert B. Brown, the commanding general of the Combined Arms Center at Fort Leavenworth, has overseen the publication of a collection of vignettes and articles that sharpen the understanding of mission command. They offer an expanded view of the practice of mission command in widely varied settings. Chapter that addresses urban operations include:

Published by Army University Pres, 2016

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Private First Class Edward Meyers, machine gunner, Alpha Company, 1st 325 Airborne Infantry Regiment (U.S. Army photo)

Mission Command:

Evolution of a Warfighting Function applied to Recruiting Operations

By Sgt 1st Class Alex H. Joy
Cpt. Joseph N. Harmon

Recruiting Command suffers a range of organizational issues as it strives to meet its commander’s intent. The authors explain how mission command can be used to improve recruiting efforts.

Published Online Exclusive Articles, 24 June 2016

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(U.S. Army photo by Steve Stover)

Mission Command in Education

By Paul Sanders, U.S. Army, Retired

The author explains how the adult education concept Andragogik as applied in Army Distance Education programs provides students with the foundations of the six principles of Mission Command.

Published Online Exclusive Articles, 24 March 2016

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16 Cases in Mission Command- cover

16 Cases in Mission Command

General Editor Donald P. Wright, Ph. D.

This collection of historical vignettes seeks to sharpen understanding of mission command philosophy and practice by providing examples from the past in which mission command principles played a decisive role. Each historical account is complemented by an annotated explanation of how the six mission command principles shaped the action. Chapters that address urban operations include:

Published by Combat Studies Institute Press, July 2013

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Chapter 17 - Mission Command In Extremis

Lieutenant General Walton Walker’s “Stand or Die” Order

Thomas Hanson, PhD, Colonel (Ret), US Army
Contributing Author

Dr. Tom Hanson, Colonel (Ret), US Army, assumed duties as Director of the Department of Military History for the Command and General Staff College in January, 2017. His book Combat Ready? The Eighth US Army on the Eve of the Korean War was recently placed on the Army Chief of Staff’s Recommended Reading List. He holds a BA in history from the University of Minnesota and an MA and PhD from The Ohio State University.


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Additional Resources

Integrating the Decisive Action Training Environment Training for Near-Peer Threats

Integrating the Decisive Action Training Environment

Training for Near-Peer Threats

By Sgt. 1st Class Steven Harvey
U.S. Army Cyber Center of Excellence

Everything from politics, economics, religion, infrastructure, technology, and even social media has the potential to dramatically affect mission outcome. Incorporating these factors, as well as current operational environment (OE) variables are all part of the Army's Decisive Action Training Environments (DATE) training.

Published by NCO Journal, 12 July 2019

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FM 3-0: Operations A Selected Overview

FM 3-0: Operations

A Selected Overview

By Sgt. 1st Class Raymond Kiely
Combined Arms Center — Fort Leavenworth

As the focus on COIN operations shifts to a LSCO-oriented mindset to prepare for near-peer threats, FM 3-0 is a standardized guide that allows Soldiers to develop training and tactics with the future battlefield in mind.

Published by NCO Journal, 10 July 2019

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A Culture of Trust

A Culture of Trust

Implications for Security Challenges in Nigeria

By By Master Sgt. Michael Holmberg,
Master Sgt. Andres Salazar,
Sgt. 1st Class Jonah Herd,
Sgt. 1st Class Brandie Lane,
and Sgt. 1st Class Natasha Orslene

A culture of trust is a priority for the Army and essential to mission command. Soldiers are stewards of their professions through education, training, professional development, and the enforcement of ethical standards.

Published by the NCO Journal - 20 May 2019

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U.S. Army Command Sgt. Maj. Timothy Hileman, Pennsylvania National Guard, speaks with Soldiers of 1st Battalion, 111th Infantry Regiment, 56th Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 28th Infantry Division, Pennsylvania National Guard during their training rotation at the National Training Center, Fort Irwin, California, Aug. 13, 2018. (U.S. Army National Guard photo by Sgt. 1st Class HollyAnn Nicom)

A Stewardship of the Profession

Using Mission Command as a Mechanism for Subordinate Leadership Development

By Sgt. Reed P. Russell
Delta Company, 14th Brigade Engineer Battalion, 2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division

Allow your Soldiers to learn and grow through tangible experience and disciplined initiative, and you may be surprised at the extent to which they will commit to themselves, the mission, and the Army.

Published by the NCO Journal, 29 October 2018

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The commander's intent, one of the six guiding principles of mission command, should be concise and to the point. The “conciseness“ depends upon your target audience. For example, “go sweep the hangar floor“ is enough for a sergeant who has swept many a hangar floor. However, if you are telling the specialist who has never done it before, more details may be needed. (Graphic by NCO Journal)

The Philosophy of Mission Command and the NCO Corps

By Command Sgt. Maj. Paul G. Hutchings
2nd Battalion, 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (Airborne)

We know what mission command is, and knowing is half the battle, but do we practice mission command at the NCO level? Is mission command, especially the philosophy, even in the realm of the NCO? Lastly, how do we create agile and adaptive leaders?

Published by the NCO Journal, 21 February 2018

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