Department of the Army Historical Summary: FY 1985
Success on tomorrow's battlefield, which will be more lethal, intense, and complex than ever before, demands a peacetime training program devoted to excellence and the development of individual and unit skills and confidence to the fullest potential. Because of the critical importance of training in mission accomplishment, it was added as the eighth Total Army goal. The Secretary of the Army set the first seven goals-readiness, human, leadership, materiel, future development, strategic deployment, and management-in December 1981 as the basis for assuring the accomplishment of the Army's mission to be an effective deterrent against any attack on U.S. national interest; or, if deterrence fails, to engage and defeat any enemy in any environment.
During the past .year, a number of actions were under way or planned to advance the technical and tactical proficiency of those who command and lead-the noncommissioned officer (NCO) and officer corps.
The School of Advanced Military Studies at the Command and General Staff College (C&GSC) has, since 1983, provided selected officers who have high potential as battalion and brigade commanders and as principal staff officers in divisions and corps with educational opportunities in the science and art of war at tactical and operational levels. A class of forty-eight has been approved for the current year.
Currently, about 1,200 captains are attending the nine-week staff training course at the Combined Arms and Services Staff School. The number of participants in the course, considered one of the most demanding and challenging in the Army, should double next year, but ,plans to train all captains outside the health services, Chaplain's Corps, and Judge Advocate
General's Corps will be delayed due to leadership requirements for light infantry divisions and other key initiatives.
The Chief of Staff approved a revised Officer Advanced Course of twenty weeks with up to six weeks of additional instruction based upon individual student needs relative to his or her next assignment. Implementation of the new format began in January 1985. Length of the revamped course should average twenty-three weeks as compared to the twenty-six week sessions under the old course.
The Chief of Staff also approved plans to carry out the Senior Service College Command and General Staff College Enhancement Program (SCEP). The program features an improved selection process for the Army War College Corresponding Studies Course (AWCCSC), which should result in higher retention rates; increased opportunities for Senior Service College (SSC) graduates and attendees through the SSC Fellowship Program and the addition of new correspondence courses; increased opportunities for CSC graduates and attendees through the evaluation of in-service equivalency; and better chances for officers in both Military Education Levels (MELs 1 and 4) by including foreign school equivalency in the evaluation process. Committees with Army-wide representation will be formed for each SCEP element to insure full implementation.
The Professional Development of Officers Study (PDOS), the first in-depth analysis of professional development in the officer corps since the Review of Education and Training for Officers (RETO) study in 1977, was completed in December 1984. Geared to long-range planning, the study projected training and education requirements through 2025, with special attention given to military training and education in service schools and units, and the identification of strengths and weaknesses in the current system. The PDOS study complements a more broadly based study conducted by the Officer Personnel Management System (OPMS) task force. It looked into all aspects of officer corps management-structure, accessions, separations, command, distribution, the role of proponent branches and arms, specialties, and promotions. A similar review for warrant officers has not yet been completed.
Several initiatives undertaken at the Ranger School during fiscal year 1985 were designed to provide Ranger-qualified soldiers and leaders for the Army's new light divisions. A Ranger School enrollment increase of 900, from 2,100 to 3,000, was approved for implementation in fiscal year 1987. But even with
the increase, some Ranger slots in the new divisions initially will have to be filled with non-Ranger personnel. Also, the first classes in a new four-week Light Leader Course, which got under way at Fort Benning in August 1984, were beginning to turn out commissioned and noncommissioned officers for duty with light infantry units.
Another light division training initiative, a fifteen-week, one station unit training (OSUT) program for 7th Infantry Division COHORT light infantry battalions, began at Fort Benning in November 1984 on a test basis. Training during the first thirteen weeks of the program is the same as that provided to regular infantry recruits, while the two-week add-on provides additional instruction in marksmanship, land navigation, and military operations in urban areas. The success of the new program led to its extension to other 7th Infantry Division battalions, and to plans for expanding it to other COHORT light infantry battalions which will be formed upon activation of the 10th and 6th Infantry Divisions and the conversion of the 25th Infantry Division to a light infantry configuration.
Revision of the Skill Qualification Test (SQT) from a written and practical applications format to a completely written exam in 1982, due to the length of time required to take the performance part, continued to present problems. The changes in the SQT were part of a comprehensive revamping of the Army's Individual Training and Evaluation Program (ITEP) which was designed to streamline and correct deficiencies by employing simpler procedures, greater flexibility, and an improved means of measuring skill level proficiency. The practical applications portion of the old SQT was to be replaced by hands-on common task tests which would serve to evaluate soldier performance. Many soldiers felt that the new test tended to result in lower scores, had an adverse effect on promotions and reenlistment eligibility, which were based largely on SQT test results, and that ability should be considered as well as "text book" knowledge. Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC) sought to resolve discontent with the new SQT by combining the written test and the "hands-on" test; but Major Army Command (MACOM) commanders, at their August 1984 meeting, expressed reservations and the proposed revision was shelved pending further study of the matter.
The Army made progress during the year in reducing the number of enlisted recruits who failed both their first and second skill training courses. The double-failure rate, which a
critical Department of Defense (DOD) Inspector General audit prepared in November 1983 reported to be 38 percent for fiscal year 1981, had leveled-off in fiscal year 1984 and had dropped in fiscal year 1985. Critical factors in the high failure rate, according to the audit report, were that only 24 percent of the trainees surveyed received course reassignments of their choice, the lack of necessary prerequisites for enrollment in their second courses, and their assignment to second courses of such similarity to those they had failed initially as to predispose failure. Improvements in the trainee failure rate during fiscal year 1985 were due in large measure to taking into account individual preferences, ensuring that individuals possessed the prerequisites before training assignments were made, and expanding the availability of trainees' records on file at the Military Personnel Center through the use of computers so that local commanders and their staffs could more effectively match skills with available Military Occupational Specialty (MOS) slots.
A number of actions were taken during the year to improve the Noncommissioned Officer Education System (NCOES). The system comprises fully integrated resident training, self-study, and on-the-job training materials which are designed to sharpen leadership skills and insure technical expertise in support of career progression.
New construction begun at the Sergeants Major Academy this year, when completed in fiscal year 1987, will enable the Army to provide formal training for all first sergeants and sergeants major and institute formal training for senior operations and intelligence NCOs. The new facilities at Biggs Field, Fort Bliss, will permit an expansion of annual enrollments in the first sergeants course from 696 to 1,010, an increase in the sergeants major course from 496 to 624, and an enrollment of 500 students in the new senior operations/intelligence NCO course.
Merger of the primary leadership course for combat support and combat service support soldiers and the primary NCO course for combat arms soldiers into the primary leadership development course was completed during the year. The new course provides standardized instruction in the fundamentals of leadership, responsibility, and authority for all military occupational specialties.
The number of primary technical courses and basic technical courses rose by forty-two during the fiscal year, as the Army continued to expand educational opportunities for the
combat support and combat service support soldiers, thus enabling them to better supervise and train other soldiers on the job. These courses were brought under centralized management at the Military Personnel Center to ensure that full use is made of available training spaces and that the combat support and combat service support NCO is properly trained for career advancement.
In December 1984 TRADOC formed a study group to assess training requirements for the Individual Ready Reserve (IRR) and to develop training strategies to compensate for the fact that early deploying personnel would have little or no time for refresher training after mobilization and prior to deployment. In response to the study group's recommendations, the Army took a number of initiatives this year and planned others for fiscal year 1986 to beef-up peacetime training for the IRR. This year's actions included initiation of a pilot resident training program for IRR members in MOSS 11B, 19E, 31V, 54E, and 63B; development of an IRR training priority model; and making a start on incorporating IRR training strategies into the training requirements analysis system. In fiscal year 1986, following the successful completion of the pilot program, resident IRR training will be expanded to nine MOSs (11B, 12B, 13B, 19E; 31V, 54E, 63B, 76C, and 76Y); an annual review of IRR training priorities will begin; and counterpart training opportunities with active Army units for IRR members will increase.
Fiscal year 1985 saw the continuation of initiatives begun in 1982, the Army year of Physical Fitness, to improve the physical and mental well being of soldiers and their families. This year the Army Families Fitness Manual was published and distributed, and the Army Fitness School and Research Institute completed a comprehensive study of infantry soldier physical requirements. Also, extension of the over-forty medical screening effort to the reserve components began. Future projects in this vital area include enrolling reserve component personnel in master fitness training courses and developing fitness programs to meet specific combat requirements.
Training Facilities and Devices
The National Training Center at Fort Irwin, California, expanded its role of providing the most rigorous combined arms training experience short of war to both active and reserve component units. In fiscal year 1985, 28 battalions, including 5
of the Army National Guard, trained at the center-up from 24 battalions, including 1 guard battalion, during fiscal year 1984. Utilizing live fire as well as the latest in electronic devices and dedicated opposing forces in realistic scenarios, the center provides commanders with an objective assessment of their unit's training status. Data collected during the training course, which lasts twenty days for active Army units, is used to improve training, tactical doctrine, and weapons and support systems employment throughout the Army; and provides a record of performance that helps participating units work on areas that need improvement in follow-on home station training.
The U.S. Army School of the Americas transferred from Fort Gulick, Panama, to a temporary site at Fort Benning, Georgia, and became a component of TRADOC as of 16 April 1985. The mission of the School of the Americas is to train Latin American military personnel using the Spanish language. The school curriculum includes a Command and General Staff College, an Infantry Officer Basic Course, Patrolling, a Noncommissioned Officers Professional Development course and others. TRADOC's Permanent Site Study Group reviewed forty-one posts as potential sites for the final location and then reduced that number to three sites. A permanent site decision will be made by the Secretary of the Army in early 1986.
Activity in the Army's range modernization program during fiscal year 1985 centered on new range designs to meet training requirements created by the fielding of new weapons; upgrading existing ranges suffering the effects of two decades of underfunding; and modernization in response to new and expanded training requirements. A key element in the program was the Department of the Army Ammunition Ranges and Targets Agency, which provided field assistance to major command and installation trainers in design, site adaptation, and use of state-of-the-art technology. Construction of mufti-purpose range complexes, begun in fiscal year 1984 at Forts Bliss, Riley, Hood, and two major training areas in Germany, continued into fiscal year 1985. One of the German ranges, at Grafenwohr, was completed in November 1984. It is the first company-size range in the Army and can accommodate the M1 Abrams tank and the Bradley fighting vehicles. Completion of the work at Grafenwohr capped a massive two-year effort which also involved construction of facilities at Hohenfels and Wildflecken. Coordinated by the Corps of Engineers' office in Frankfurt (European Division) and performed by USAREUR's
18th Engineer Brigade, this was the largest military construction effort by Army engineer troops in decades.
In other range modernization actions, Army Training Centers began a full upgrade of rifle ranges, and new ranges were built for infantry divisions in Hawaii and Korea; the first "light" mufti-purpose range for airborne/airmobile/light infantry was fielded; and funds were obligated to demonstrate the first multiple object location system at the Fort Hood multipurpose range complex. Also, to correct the Army's serious deficiencies in training facilities for military operations on urbanized terrain (MOUT), construction of new facilities was begun at Forts Ord and Hood. These will supplement existing facilities at Fort Bragg and Berlin (FRG). Both facilities will feature a live-fire MOUT assault course for teaching basic urban combat skills to individuals and squads. The new facilities will also have the capability to conduct force on force exercises at the platoon and company level.
The Army moved forward during the past year in the utilization of computers to train soldiers in the classroom and on post. Training and Doctrine Command is placing mainframe computers in selected sites and purchasing 1,000 terminals which will be linked by telephone as part of a nationwide instructional network that will contain five regional mainframes joining 1,200 terminals. Work also continued on an interactive video disc-based electronic information delivery system (EIDS), which will provide Army schools high fidelity video simulations and interactive training. Purchase of 1,900 EIDS units is planned for next year, and development of programs for use with the system is under way.
The unprecedented integration of modern weapons into the force structure and increased constraints on people, dollars, time, fuel, ammunition, repair parts, and environmental concerns have placed a premium on bringing into play training devices and simulators utilizing lasers, video discs, and computer-generated imagery to effect realistic conditions in carrying out effective field training programs. Their use in marksmanship and gunnery training programs permits greater utilization of training ammunition and other resources for advanced gunnery and combined arms live-fire exercises. This year emphasis in this area has centered on a vigorous research and development effort geared to the Army's most critical training device requirements, including precision gunnery, field artillery crew training, and signal intelligence operations and maintenance
training; and the procurement of a number of devices already developed.
New devices and simulators introduced during fiscal year 1985 included the unit conduct of fire trainer (UCOFT) for tank and infantry fighting vehicle crews and the Army Training Battle Simulation System (ARTBASS) for maneuver area commanders and their staffs. The Multiple Integrated Laser System (MILES), introduced two years ago, provides unparalleled opportunities for realistic, two-sided, tactical training on a number of ground, aircraft, and air defense direct-fire weapons systems and which has been particularly effective in battalion-level field training exercises at the National Training Center.
In October 1984 computers were installed worldwide throughout the U.S. Army chaplaincy at major commands, installations, the U.S. Army Chaplain Center and School, the U.S. Army Chaplain Board at Fort Monmouth, New Jersey, and the Office of the Chief of Chaplains. The system of 218 computers, which are accessible through autovon, commercial lines, and an 800 number, automated such administrative functions as statistical data and reports, appropriated and nonappropriated fund records, and reports and general administrative support activities, including word processing. The system has had the effect of increasing the quantity and quality of administrative support without increasing the number of support personnel. In May 1985 the Assistant Secretary of the Army approved the procurement of up to sixty-three additional compatible systems to expand system capabilities at installation level.
The Army field exercise program involves deployment of equipment and troops within the continental United States and in Europe, Southwest Asia, the Pacific, and Central America. In addition to providing realistic, mission-oriented training, the exercises provide an opportunity to practice combined arms techniques, cooperation with other services, interoperability with allied forces, and demonstrate to friend and foe alike the capability and willingness of the United States to deploy rapidly in a crisis situation. During fiscal year 1985, Army forces, both active and reserve components, participated in 12 Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS)-directed and 37 JCS-coordinated exer-
cises, up from 10 directed and 32 coordinated exercises in fiscal year 1984. A few of the major ones are noted below.
The tenth annual TEAM SPIRIT exercise involving U.S. and Korean forces was held in March 1985. The purpose of this series of exercises is to improve combat readiness of ROK and U.S. supporting forces through training in joint/combined operations, to include receiving, staging, employing, and redeploying out-of-country forces, and to show potential foes the resolve of South Korea and the United States in preserving freedom. This year's exercise focused on refinements in the application of AirLand Battle doctrine, rapid deployment of U.S. forces from other areas of the Pacific and the continental United States, and realistic training in a field environment.
United States Readiness Command (USREDCOM) conducted BORDER STAR 85, a joint readiness exercise involving some 30,000 Army, Air Force, and Marine service members in March 1985. Held at Fort Bliss, Texas, White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico, and adjacent public lands, the exercise used opposing forces in a simulated combat environment to train, test, and evaluate commanders, staffs, and forces in joint operations. Participants included I Corps Headquarters, units of the 9th Infantry Division, the 3d Armored Cavalry Regiment, 9th and 12th Air Force units, and elements of the 4th Marine Air Wing. More than thirty National Guard units and over fifty Army Reserve units also participated.
AHUAS TARA III, a continuation of the BIG PINE series of joint/combined U.S./Honduran exercises conducted in 1983 and 1984, was held from 11 February through 3 May 1985. Its purpose was to continue the U.S. presence in Central America, reassure friendly Caribbean nations, and deter aggression. During the preparatory phase (11 February-12 April) of the exercise, an engineer task force with support elements undertook engineer operations to support the joint/combined anti-armor and counterinsurgency field training portions of the exercise which began in mid-April. Redeployment of all exercise forces and equipment, including the first tanks used in the BIG PINE series, was completed on 3 May. In late April 1985 UNIVERSAL TREK 85, a joint U.S./Honduran amphibious exercise on the Northern coast of Honduras, involved some 6,600 U.S. troops, supported by attack helicopters and guided missile ships.
The Army secretariat, staff, and MACOMs were major participants in two joint Chiefs of Staff Command Post exercises during fiscal year 1985. Exercise POWDER RIVER 85 was a mobilization and deployment exercise centering on mufti-theater
conventional war plan execution. It was conducted 15-26 October 1984 and involved the participation of the Office of the Secretary of Defense, the Office of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, military services, unified and specified commands, and representatives of federal civil agencies. Army participants included major commands, continental armies, reserve component forces, and mobilization stations. Exercise WINTEX/CIMEX 85 was a NATO exercise with U.S. participation sponsored by the JCS. The exercise was a biennial NATO reinforced, worldwide CPR. The major Army participants were HQDA, USAREUR, MACOMs, and reserve component forces. The focus of the exercise for the Army, as was also true of POWDER RIVER 85, was to exercise and evaluate policies, plans, and procedures associated with the reinforcement of NATO.
Reserve Component Training
A number of initiatives were taken to improve training opportunities for reserve component units during fiscal year 1985. In addition to an increase in the number of National Guard battalions receiving training at the National Training Center, tactical engagement simulation equipment was being installed at reserve component summer training sites. Overseas deployment training, which provides high priority reserve component units the opportunity to train in their wartime contingency command alongside the active Army units with which they would serve, continued to grow, expanding to over 1,200 units/cells in 1985. The CAPSTONE program, which aligns reserve component units scheduled for deployment to Europe with their wartime chain of command, either in an affiliated or round out status, has been expanded to include the Pacific, Southwest Asia, and sustaining forces in the continental United States. During fiscal year 1985 reserve component commanders of CAPSTONE-aligned units met with their active Army counterparts and their staffs to exchange information, refine operations plans, and identify training requirements.
An important adjunct to reserve component training is the Active Guard/Reserve Program, which enhances training and readiness by providing reserve component units with the fulltime personnel necessary to improve training, logistics mobilization planning, and readiness. Active Guard/Reserve personnel also serve as recruiters and in key staff positions in headquarters responsible for administering the National Guard and Army Reserve. Active Guard/Reserve Program strength in-
creased by 6,332 members-4,403 in the National Guard and 1,929 in the Army Reserve-during fiscal year 1985. Current plans provide for continuing increases in program strength through fiscal year 1990.
Also during the year, the Army published a regulation (AR 135-18) that laid the foundation for a total life cycle Active Guard/Reserve personnel management system. The regulation established acquisition, sustainment, and separation policies to provide the cadre of qualified full-time personnel the Guard and Reserve need. The National Guard Bureau and the Office of the Chief, Army Reserve, are preparing regulations to extend the policies delineated in AR 135-18 to their respective components.
In July 1985 the Secretary of the Army directed that a study be conducted on Reserve Officer Logistics Training. A task force at the U.S. Army Logistics Center, Fort Lee, Virginia, has begun an in depth examination of problems encountered by reserve component officers in receiving adequate training in the logistic functions of supply, maintenance, transportation, etc. The study should be completed in fiscal year 1986.
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Last updated 4 March 2004