Accession Number : ADA309833

Title :   Why Johnny Can't Dismount: The Decline of America's Mechanized Infantry Force.

Descriptive Note : Monograph,

Corporate Author : ARMY COMMAND AND GENERAL STAFF COLL FORT LEAVENWORTH KS SCHOOL OF ADVANCED MIL ITARY STUDIES

Personal Author(s) : Gibbons, Edward G., Jr

PDF Url : ADA309833

Report Date : 14 DEC 1995

Pagination or Media Count : 67

Abstract : The Bradley Infantry Fighting Vehicle's (BFV) introduction in 1983 inaugurated a fundamental change in the perception of the mechanized infantryman's role in combat. For the first time, the mechanized infantry company/team possessed the requisite organic firepower to support the maneuver of its dismounted infantry while simultaneously supplementing the anti-armor firepower of its accompanying tanks. The thesis of this paper is that the price for this capability is a focus on gunnery training at the expense of dismounted infantry individual and collective tasks -- recognized prior to the Bradley's introduction as the core element of the mechanized infantry company's contribution to the combined arms team. In the introduction, the monograph introduces a definition of combined arms taken from the 1982 edition of FM 100-5 that states 'Combined arms is defined as two or more arms in mutual support to produce complementary and reinforcing effects that neither can attain separately.' Using this criteria, the monograph then examines the theoretical and doctrinal basis for the effectiveness of the combined arms organization and the role of the mechanized infantryman on the battlefield. In the section that follows, the explanation of complementary and reinforcing effects is expanded, and its evolution in doctrine is explored. An examination of the fighting doctrine and training doctrine pertaining to mechanized infantry follows. Finally, using CTC observations and indicators from recent mechanized infantry command experience, the monograph evaluates the current level of dismounted mechanized infantry proficiency. The monograph ends by offering several changes to the current training program for mechanized infantry units to enable them to train and fight more effectively as combined arms organizations.

Descriptors :   *ARMY TRAINING, *MILITARY CAPABILITIES, *DEFICIENCIES, *INFANTRY PERSONNEL, *TANKS(COMBAT VEHICLES), *MECHANIZATION, *GUNNERY TRAINERS, MILITARY DOCTRINE, COMBAT SUPPORT, ANTIARMOR AMMUNITION, TEAMS(PERSONNEL), THESES, COMPANY LEVEL ORGANIZATIONS, MANEUVERS, PROFICIENCY, FIREPOWER, PERCEPTION.

Subject Categories : Military Forces and Organizations
      Combat Vehicles
      Fire Control and Bombing Systems

Distribution Statement : APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE