The initial conflicts in the Global War on Terrorism, Afghanistan and Iraq, pose significant challenges for the armed forces of the United States and its coalition allies. Among the challenges is the use of field artillery in those campaigns that fall short of conventional warfare. Engaged in a spectrum from full-scale combat to stability and support operations, the military is faced with an ever-changing environment in which to use its combat power. For instance, it is axiomatic that the massive application of firepower necessary to destroy targets in decisive phase III combat operations is not necessary in phase IV stability operations. However, the phasing of campaigns has become increasingly fluid as operations shift from phase III to IV and back to phase III, or activities in one portion of a country are in phase IV while in another portion phase III operations rage. The challenges of this environment are significant but not new. The US military has faced them before, in places like the American West, the Philippines, Latin America, Vietnam, and others. Dr. Larry Yates’ study, Field Artillery in Military Operations Other Than War: An Overview of the US Experience, captures the unique contributions of that branch in a variety of operational experiences. In doing so, this work provides the modern officer with a reference to the continuing utility of field artillery in any future conflict. combat Studies Institute.
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