White paper says Army needs tough, realistic training

| March 18, 2016 | 0 Comments
Photo by Mike CaseySoldiers from the 1st Cavalry Division practice conducting an assault during a training event at Fort Hood, Texas. A recent white paper says the Army needs tough, realistic training to prepare Soldiers for future missions.

Soldiers from the 1st Cavalry Division practice conducting an assault during a training event at Fort Hood, Texas. A recent white paper says the Army needs tough, realistic training to prepare Soldiers for future missions.

 

Story and photo by Mike Casey
Army News Service

FORT LEAVENWORTH, Kan. — The Army must make training more like combat to prepare units and leaders for the complexities of future conflicts, a recent white paper has stated.

Lt. Gen. Robert B. Brown, commander, Combined Arms Center, approved the document, entitled “Enhancing Realistic Training.”

In the white paper’s forward, Brown said, training needs to reflect the intensity of combat that Soldiers saw in Iraq and Afghanistan.

“Legacy training methodologies and capabilities do not replicate the complexities or challenges they encountered during a decade of conflict,” he said. “Our Soldiers and leaders realize the environment they will encounter in future combat is growing in complexity and unknowns, and they are demanding realism in training.”

The white paper recommends the Combined Arms Center training establish an enhanced realistic training work group to conduct an accelerated capabilities-based assessment to identify the critical gaps and potential solutions for current and long-term capabilities development efforts.

Here is the white paper’s definition of realistic training: Realistic training is the deliberate practice of individual and collective tasks to enable tactical and technical proficiency that support mission accomplishment in a training environment that approximates the operational environment in both sufficient complexity and substance.

The operational environment is constantly changing, requiring the Army to prepare units to counter innovative threats. These threats can include regular and irregular forces, as well as criminals and terrorists, or even a hybrid threat that includes all of those groups.

Enhanced realistic training capabilities will provide a training environment that represents many of the conditions expected on future battlefields based on observed operational environment trends, the white paper stated.

Photo by Sgt. Brian C. Erickson, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division Public Affairs Office Soldiers from 3rd Squadron, 4th Cavalry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division, remove a sked stretcher from its case for a simulated casualty during Bronco Rumble, May 2013. A new recently released report suggests ways for improving Army-wide training and making it more realistic.

Photo by Sgt. Brian C. Erickson, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division Public Affairs Office
Soldiers from 3rd Squadron, 4th Cavalry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division, remove a sked stretcher from its case for a simulated casualty during Bronco Rumble, May 2013.

To prepare units, training events must accomplish the following:

  • Add multiple challenges for Soldiers, leaders and units to consider and overcome.
  • Represent the physical and cognitive stresses of combat and its moral and ethical challenges.
  • Incorporate the human, social-cultural and political aspects of conflict, replicate joint and combined arms effects, and the capabilities and limitations of Army ground forces and Unified Action Partners.

The white paper supports the Army Operating Concept and Human Dimension Strategy. The concept states that training must be more realistic and challenging.

The 2015 Human Dimension Strategy lists realistic training as one of three lines of effort to develop cohesive teams of professionals who can thrive in ambiguous, complex and challenging situations.

(Editor’s note: Casey works at the Combined Arms Center-Training.)

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Category: Army News Service, News

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