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Military


US Military Exercises

The more you sweat in peace time,
the less you bleed in combat.

Their drills were bloodless battles and
their battles, bloody drills.
Titus Flavius Josephus, of the Romans

Unified Command

Joint Chiefs
Africa Command
European Command
Pacific Command
Central Command
Southern Command
Northern Command
Joint Forces Command
Space Command
Special Operations Command
Strategic Command
Transportation Command



Service Exercises

Army
Navy
Marines
Air Force



Exercise Scenario Geography

The CJCS Exercise Program is the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff's principal vehicle for achieving joint and multinational training. The Joint Staff's exercise budget funds only the transportation of personnel and equipment to these world wide exercises. The program provides combatant commanders with their primary means to train battle staffs and forces in joint and combined operations, to evaluate war plans, and to execute their engagement strategies. It provides an opportunity to stress strategic transportation and C4I systems and evaluate their readiness and supportability across the full range of military operations. This critical program also provides a vehicle for the Department of Defense to assess the military's ability to satisfy joint national security requirements and to enhance and evaluate interoperability between the Services, as well as exercise critical Service-unique deployment and redeployment skills.

Another notable departure from service-centric tradition is the decision to phase out so-called Title 10 war games, which typically had been conducted by each service to showcase their individual capabilities. That is no longer acceptable at the Pentagon. Title 10 war games are being replaced by joint war games.

CJCS Exercise program supports all DOD corporate goals but most particularly "shape the international environment and respond to the full spectrum of crises by providing appropriately sized, positioned, and mobile forces." The CJCS exercise program, a key component of the Joint Training System (JTS), is the Chairman's principal vehicle for achieving joint and multinational training. This critical program provides a vehicle for the Department to assess the military's ability to satisfy joint national security requirements and to enhance and evaluate interoperability among the Services, as well as exercise critical Service unique deployment/redeployment skills.

In addition to the obvious contributions to readiness and strategic access, this program provides political and diplomatic returns well beyond its relatively low cost. Exercises demonstrate US resolve and capability to project military power anywhere in the world in support of US national interests and in support of US allies. Additionally, the CJCS Exercise Program provides an opportunity to stress strategic transportation and C4I systems and evaluate their readiness and supportability across the full spectrum of military operations.

These combined exercises include both CJCS exercises and other CINC exercises that are not under the CJCS exercise program. Further, the CJCS exercise program includes combinations of joint, combined, and single Service exercises. Combined exercises are defined as those exercises, both overseas and CONUS, that have foreign nation participation. Some of these exercises, such as the Partnership for Peace (PFP) or the New Horizons series exercises, can include numerous exercises combined within those headings (i.e., for FY 2000 USEUCOM has 16 exercises combined under PFP).

The CJCS Exercise Program is the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff's principal vehicle for achieving joint and multinational training. The Joint Staff's exercise budget funds only the transportation of personnel and equipment to these world wide exercises. The program provides combatant commanders with their primary means to train battle staffs and forces in joint and combined operations, to evaluate war plans, and to execute their engagement strategies. It provides an opportunity to stress strategic transportation and C4I systems and evaluate their readiness and supportability across the full range of military operations. This critical program also provides a vehicle for the Department of Defense to assess the military's ability to satisfy joint national security requirements and to enhance and evaluate interoperability between the Services, as well as exercise critical Service-unique deployment and redeployment skills.

To reduce the impact of OPTEMPO on people, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs directed an overall 30 percent reduction in joint exercise man-days between FY96 and FY01 - a goal that was met. Additionally, this directive resulted in reducing the number of joint exercises from 277 in FY96 to 189 in FY00. The additional FY00 Congressional reductions in the CJCS Exercise Program Service Incremental Funding made it more difficult for this important program to match essential training with the need to reduce OPTEMPO/PERSTEMPO. In accordance with Defense Planning Guidance, the Joint Staff rebaselined this program, having achieved the 30 percent requirement for cumulative man-day reductions by FY 2001.

United States military forces are permitted to carry out humanitarian assistance projects and activities as part of training operations overseas. These deployments are an integral aspect of maintaining a forward US military presence, ensuring operational readiness to respond to crises, and preparing the Reserve Components for their wartime missions. Humanitarian and civic assistance (HCA) activities are conducted in conjunction with authorized military operations and are authorized by 10 USC Section 401.

Experience with live ordnance and exposure to live fire conditions are essential to combat readiness and are prerequisites for those who may be called to engage in combat. Foregoing this experience, for whatever reason, is likely to result in increased casualties and suboptimized performance in battle. Exposure to live ordnance rivets the attention of those who manage, handle and employ it with a combination of fear and reverence that inert ordnance cannot convey. The uncertainty and intimidation when working in a live fire environment can be significantly reduced by the practical experience of live ordnance training. Exposure to live ordnance in a high stress environment, as similar to actual combat conditions as reasonable, instills confidence in comrades, seniors and subordinates, and in their procedures and equipment. It provides an opportunity to practice the critical tasks and coordination essential to survival and success in combat. There is no realistic simulation for this experience.

The use of live ordnance validates every aspect of weapon employment, including combat systems, fusing and arming of weapons, as well as the human factors involved. For effective delivery of live ordnance, ship, aircraft and combat systems must perform flawlessly from "magazine to target." The performance of individuals using weapons loaded with live ordnance is based on actual results and target damage. Live ordnance training develops individuals who know when to --or when not to -- deliver fires. Such skills are highly perishable, and practice is absolutely necessary to ensure accurate delivery of fires.

The safety of U.S. forces in combat is significantly enhanced through the conduct of live ordnance training. Conventional ordnance incident reports, which document systems, equipment and procedural issues that affect the safety and reliability of weapons, are generated largely from experience gained by training with live ordnance. The corrective action taken to remedy ordnance deficiencies improves combat readiness, equipment reliability, and personal safety.



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