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Appendix D

Operations Other Than War

Operations other than war are military activities during peacetime and conflict that do not necessarily involve armed clashes between two organized forces. A cavalry troop will conduct reconnaissance, security, offensive, defensive, and other tactical operations in support of operations other than war. Some examples of operations other than war that a cavalry troop may be involved in are as follows:

Counterdrug Strikes and raids

Disaster relief Peace enforcement

Civil support Support to insurgency

Peace-building Anti-terrorism

Nation assistance Peacekeeping

Noncombatant evacuation

operations (NEO)

The primary operational constraints during operations other than war are defined by the rules of engagement (ROE). These rules range from the use of force for self-defense only to total impartiality when applying force. The rules of engagement for peacetime will be more restrictive than those for conflict. The troop commander should consider the following in relation to the rules of engagement:

  • The degree of force used must only be sufficient to achieve the task at hand and prevent, as far as possible, loss of human life or serious injury.
  • Leaders at all levels must ensure that the ROE do not limit the soldiers' ability to defend themselves.
  • Leaders must never tape over magazines to keep soldiers from chambering rounds.
  • Leaders must ensure all soldiers understand what conditions must be met before chambering rounds.
  • The ROE must be realistic, simple, and easy to understand. Develop a single card that clearly outlines the ROE and issue it to all soldiers for reference, keeping in mind that the card in itself is not the answer. Soldiers must know and understand the ROE.
  • During peacekeeping, forces have no mandate to prevent violations of peace agreements by the active use of force. (Observe and report only.) To maintain the peace, units may be positioned between belligerents. Troop commanders must realize that soldiers are being placed at risk. The protection of the troop must be emphasized.
  • Peace enforcement missions allow the active use of force. The peacetime ROE resemble the ROE for hostilities (wartime).
  • The formulation of ROE should consider the cultural differences of multinational forces.
  • Soldiers should be trained in the ROE, using tactical vignettes or simulated events. Train soldiers to avoid unnecessary collateral damage to property.

Actions on contact and the troop's ability to develop the situation will be affected by the rules of engagement for the theater in which the troop is operating. The troop commander should rehearse battle drills based on those rules.

In preparing for operations other than war, a troop may require specialized training. They could benefit from training in the following areas:

  • Nature of peacekeeping.
  • Regional orientation/culture of belligerents.
  • Negotiating skills.
  • Mine/booby trap/unexploded ordnance training.
  • Checkpoint operations.
  • Investigating and reporting.
  • Information collection.
  • Patrolling.
  • Media inter-relationships.
  • Establishing a buffer zone.
  • Supervising a truce or cease-fire.
  • Contributing to maintenance of law and order.
  • Demilitarizing cities or geographical areas.
  • Border surveillance/security.

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