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Appendix E

Transition Planning and Coordination Activities

Transferring control of an operation from U.S. military to a nonmilitary organization or another military force requires detailed planning and execution. Mission analysis, an identifiable end state, and the national political policy all play an important role in the transition process. Transferring control of an operation is situationally dependent, and each one possesses different characteristics and requirements. Nevertheless, this appendix provides general guidelines and recommendations for the transition process. Mission success often hinges on in-depth, proactive transition planning.

E-1. Transition occurs when either the mission has been accomplished or when the NCA so directs. Criteria for transition may be based on events, measures of effectiveness (MOE), availability of resources, or a specific date. A successful harvest or restoration of critical facilities in the crisis area is an example of an event that might trigger the transition. An appreciable drop in mortality rates, a certain percentage of DCs returned to their homes, and a given decrease in threat activity are examples of statistical criteria that may prompt the end of the involvement of U.S. forces.

E-2. When other organizations (such as the UN, NGOs, and IOs) or the FN have marshaled the necessary capabilities to assume the mission, U.S. forces may execute a transition plan.


E-3. As the redeployment phase for U.S. forces approaches, force protection must remain the number one priority. This phase can often be the most hazardous phase because the focus usually shifts toward leaving as rapidly as possible and away from force protection.

E-4. Transition planning should be an integral part of planning and mission analysis at all levels. Normally accomplished by the future operations cell of the G3 or J3, it should be developed before deployment.

E-5. Areas that impact significantly on the development of a transition plan are--

  • Identification of issues.
  • Key events (past and present).
  • Work required to accomplish the transition.
  • Identification of relevant organizations to succeed the military force in delivering civil-sector services.
  • A thorough knowledge of the organization or force taking control of the operation.

E-6. The following are questions (issues) that can have an impact on transition:

  • What is the desired end state?
  • Who will determine when the transition begins or when the transition is complete MOE?
  • Who will fund the transition?
  • What U.S. forces, equipment, supplies, or other resources will remain behind?
  • Who will support U.S. forces that remain behind?
  • Can intelligence be shared with the incoming force or organization?
  • Will new ROE be established?
  • Will ongoing operations (work with NGOs, IOs, and the FN) be discontinued or interrupted?
  • Will HA projects be interrupted?

E-7. Undoubtedly, many other issues will require attention and deliberation. Planning should link the departure of the outgoing force with the anticipated arrival of the force or organization assuming the mission. Keep the plan "unclassified" and avoid using U.S. military acronyms so that civilian or non-U.S. military agencies or organizations do not become confused (if necessary, provide a glossary for essential abbreviations).

E-8. Every staff section has valuable input to the transition plan. Input should never be refused from a staff section solely based on perceived relevance. Nothing is purely routine when dealing with the UN, multinational military forces, or civilian organizations. Staff sections should highlight how they are organized and how they function.

E-9. Each staff section should develop continuity folders to facilitate a smooth transition. Important files are often forgotten in the haste to redeploy. Knowledge of the incoming force or organization is paramount. Because funding is always a major concern, records of funding sources used in CA projects, as well as lists of potential projects, are also important.

E-10. The incoming HQ should collocate with the current HQ. Collocating the two helps the new staff assume the responsibilities of the old.


Complex humanitarian emergencies lack a mechanism to coordinate, communicate, assess, and evaluate response and outcome for the major participants (NGO, IO, U.S. Government, FN, and military forces). Success in these operations depends on the ability to accomplish agreed upon MOE. These MOE combine security measures used by the military with humanitarian indicators recognized by the relief organizations. MOE have the potential to be a unifying disaster management tool and a partial solution to the communication and coordination problems inherent in these complex emergencies..

Prehospital and Disaster Medicine, 1995

E-11. PDD 56, Managing Complex Contingency Operations, directs that all political-military implementation plans include demonstrable milestones and MOE. As the mission progresses, it further directs the update of political-military plans to reflect milestones that are (or are not) met to incorporate changes to the situation on the ground.

E-12. Traditional military planning categorizes operations in component phases that include planning, deployment, execution, and redeployment. Emergency assistance is normally addressed in the execution phase of the operation when the military component is decreasing in importance and the transition process is gaining in importance. (See Figure E-1.)

Figure E-1. Emergency Phase Operations in the Execution Phase During Transition

E-13. MOE development is an interagency process that should begin early in the planning stages of the operation. (See Figure E-2 for a template of the MOE development process.) MOE can be a useful tool in determining when or if the military operation can transition to other authorities.

Figure E-2. Process for MOE Deployment

E-14. MOE should be--

  • Appropriate. MOE should be appropriate to the mission, as follows:
    • Help the decision makers understand the status of the situation in different areas to make better decisions.
    • Present information to higher authorities.
  • Mission-related.
    • The mission must be clearly understood by all participants.
    • MOE must focus on assessing the effectiveness of the mission, not the accomplishment of support tasks.
    • MOE must cover all aspects of the mission and expand as the mission expands.
    • MOE must support decision making.
  • Consistently measurable. MOE should be able to assign either:
    • Qualitative values.
    • Qualitative descriptors.
  • Cost effective. MOE should be reasonable and not levy too high a burden on limited resources.
  • Sensitive. MOE should--
    • Change with progress toward meeting the mission objectives and not be greatly influenced by other factors.
    • Be measured in sufficient detail that changes will be apparent.
    • Timely. MOE should be responsive to changes the participants are trying to measure in a timely enough manner for participants to act.

E-15. The international relief community recognizes four categories of MOE that indicate if HA operations are meeting stated goals, as follows:

  • Security or level of violence.
    • Number of violent acts against each distribution center.
    • Number of violent acts against convoys along each key line of communications (LOC).
    • Fraction of inventory stolen from distribution centers.
    • Fraction of distribution center security mission assumed by transition agency.
    • Fraction of convoy security mission assumed by transition agency along each key LOC.
  • Infrastructure.
    • Fraction of visual flight rule day-capable airfields, by aircraft type.
    • Fraction of all key LOCs that are convoy suitable.
    • Fraction of infrastructure repair efforts met by transition authority.
    • Fraction of potable water sources reestablished.
  • Medical.
    • Crude mortality rates.
    • Under-5-years-old crude mortality rate.
    • Cause-specific mortality rates for disease.
    • Severe malnutrition measurements.
  • Agriculture and economics.
    • Market price of food.
    • Market price of animals.
    • Household surveys.
    • Fraction of land cultivated or leased to raise animals.

E-16. The JFC must establish different MOE for different purposes. Those for resource allocation should be different than for those for transition operations. MOE must reflect more than just the military effort. The mission is to relieve the suffering as soon as possible and to transition to another authority.


E-17. The operational environment is a complex one that requires disciplined, versatile Army forces operating in a joint and multinational environment to respond to different situations. These situations include the rapid transition from one kind of operation to another, such as from peace enforcement to peacekeeping and vice versa. In addition, transitions may occur between authorizing entities. Transitions may also occur during conflict termination and involve the transfers of certain responsibilities to nonmilitary civil agencies, either U.S. Government or non-U.S. Government. These agencies, perhaps with significant U.S. support, will be responsible for achieving political objectives and the strategic end state.


E-18. Transition operations should be planned and executed to the same level of detail as any other operational mission, with a heavy focus on logistics planning. The transition plan should be formatted along the same lines as relief in place and deployment and redeployment. In a joint or multinational environment, commanders at all levels must anticipate, coordinate, and plan transition operations to provide a smooth transition to other agencies or forces and to support redeployment operations. Advance elements of the force assuming the mission should strive for self-sufficiency and not assume provisions for life support and other theater-specific logistics will be available.

E-19. Transition plans and checklists are important for operational planners and commanders. Extensive checklists and plans should be developed by the staff for the transition of--

  • A coalition force to the C2 of an Army force.
  • Responsibilities for CSS.
  • Responsibility to a coalition force.
  • An entire theater from U.S. control to UN control.
  • New Army forces replacing forces scheduled to depart.


E-20. Army commanders need to identify a transition planning cell in their respective G2 or S2, G3 or S3, and G5 or S5 operations sections. Transitions are sequels to ongoing operations and should be viewed as future operations. Consequently, the planning cell is most likely that part of the staff that focuses on transitions. Other Services or the joint staff may identify a transition planning cell in future operations. Army commanders must constitute a transition planning cell from available assets within their staffs. Interfacing between the Army transition planning cells and future operations planning cells expedites the process and serves as a forum to resolve issues. Commanders must make sure transition and redeployment planning of forces and equipment begins early.

E-21. If Army forces are entering the theater to assume a mission from another Service, some of the following questions must be answered:

  • What equipment or resources will be left behind?
  • What will be assumed under a UN or logistics support contract?
  • Are sufficient forces and equipment programmed to cover all missions?
  • What are the relief-in-place SOPs of the relieving and relieved units?
  • When does the transition of command occur?
  • What liaison needs to be established?
  • How will reconnaissance and surveillance be maintained?
  • How will information be exchanged?
  • How will fire support remain continuous during the transition?
  • How will movement be controlled?
  • How and when will responsibility for the area be passed?
  • How will communications be maintained with the relieved unit?
  • What is the sequence of relief?
  • What will be the chain of command?
  • Is there a joint HQ?
  • Within the joint structure, is there a land component commander?
  • With whom must communications be established?
  • What FN support is available and who are the points of contact?
  • What agreements, understandings, or SOPs have been developed with NGOs, IOs, the FN, and UN forces?
  • What are the reporting requirements?
  • How does information flow?


E-22. U.S. military actions accomplish a specific military objective. The actions must, however, always support and defend the Constitution of the United States and its democratic form of government. An important precept of the U.S. Constitution is civilian control of the military. When military forces are deployed into an operational area, civilians and respective governments in that area often lose their privileges, responsibilities, and basic rights. CMO planners must consider and estimate the impact of the military on the civilian community. Military guidance from higher HQ must clearly define the commander's authority as related to the general ROE and the populace.


E-23. If civil authority is not clearly granted to the military commander, he generally assumes only his military responsibilities. If constraints and restrictions impact on military COAs, the commander exercises more control or modifies the operation. The degree of responsibility for CA activities assumed by the commander is relative to the effort required to disengage and redeploy his forces.


E-24. Commanders should plan and coordinate CA activities that maximize nonmilitary support. Employing the nonmilitary resources, in coordination with military operations, minimizes the potential for interference. It also maximizes military resources for the most appropriate purpose. Continuous involvement of U.S. Government and FN officials and agencies expedites transition of civil responsibilities to civil authorities.


E-25. As the commander's principal planner for CMO, the CMO staff officer must be involved in transition planning from the beginning and should be a primary player in the transition planning cell. The G5 or Joint CMO officer ensures the following are completely documented for the transition process:

  • Ongoing CA activities.
  • Coordination with the local government and local populace.
  • Interaction with other military forces and all nonmilitary agencies.

E-26. All references should be prepared, if possible, for handoff to the incoming force or agency. These references should include--

  • CA workbooks.
  • Resource card files.
  • CA area studies.
  • CMO estimates.
  • Copies of CA situation reports.
  • Other pertinent information that will aid in the efficiency and effectiveness of the transition process.

NOTE: The actions listed above must occur simultaneously in the CMO main and rear cells.


E-27. The CMOC is heavily involved in the transition process. The CMOC prepares to hand over its role as the facilitator between U.S. forces and the IOs, NGOs, and local government agencies. CMOC personnel prepare a transition plan to include all ongoing projects and coordination, points of contact for all agencies with whom the CMOC has worked, possible resources, and any other information that may facilitate the transition process.


E-28. All CA assets involved in a mission must be prepared to assist in planning and executing transition operations. The civil dimension may be the most complex portion of this process. All teams or sections must develop historical files to aid in the transition process. There is no substitute for detailed staff work and good record keeping.


E-29. CMO planning is a command responsibility. It must be coordinated, at a minimum, with all other staff planners. All CA activities require close coordination with all or some other military forces, U.S. and foreign government agencies, and NGOs with a vested interest. Coordination is especially pertinent in transition planning and operations. CMO planners consider all available support to ensure successful completion of the CMO mission. In most cases, CMO planners directly or indirectly support the agencies assigned by law to carry out national policy. JP 3-08, Interagency Coordination During Joint Operations, provides important information on the interoperability of various organizations in military operations. To ensure success, coordination and cooperation with the following are vital to the conduct of an operation:

  • Other U.S. staffs and units (SO and conventional forces).
  • FN military.
  • Coalition military.
  • U.S. Government.
  • Foreign governments.
  • International agencies.
  • NGOs.


E-30. The CMO staff usually coordinates in-country activities through the country team (Figure E-3). The country team concept represents the process of interdepartmental coordination among key members of the U.S. diplomatic mission. In practice, the makeup of the country team varies widely, depending on the--

  • Desires of the COM.
  • Country situation.
  • U.S. departments and agencies represented in country.
  • Problems to be considered.

Figure E-3. Sample Country Team Organization

E-31. The country team coordinates activities to achieve a unified program for the FN and U.S. national interests. Working under the Ambassador's direction, the country team pools the skills and resources of the participating agencies. This multinational effort helps eliminate problems and realize U.S. national objectives and goals.


E-32. As chairman, the U.S. Ambassador presides over the country team. Team composition is determined by the chairman and may include the--

  • Deputy, COM.
  • Director, USAID.
  • Public affairs officer.
  • FBI liaison.
  • Intelligence agency liaison.
  • Press secretary.
  • Department attachés (commerce, labor, and other departments).
  • Economics officer.
  • Political officer.
  • Chief of the SAO.
  • Embassy staff personnel, as appropriate.
  • Defense attachés.


E-33. Effective CA activities require close contact between the U.S. military, the DOS, and other U.S. Government agencies. Normally, an Executive Order defines agency responsibilities, functions, and interagency relationships. Either the senior DOS representative or the U.S. commander has overall responsibility for U.S. activities in the area.


E-34. Because the DOS formulates and implements foreign policy, it has a vested interest in CA activities. In the area of CMO, the DOS has primary or joint responsibility with DOD for policy concerning--

  • The government in a country where U.S. forces are present.
  • The extent to which U.S. forces aid a host government.
  • Any matters that may impact on U.S. relations with other nations, particularly allies and neutrals.
  • The level at which the economy of a country is influenced by U.S. operations, to include the degree of rehabilitation to be effected with U.S. support.
  • Operations where subsistence for local civilians relates to U.S. forces in the area.
  • Matters involving PSYOP, PA, CA, civil information, or other measures to influence the attitude of the populace.
  • Plans for turning CA activities over to civilian control at the end of hostilities.


E-35. The United States Information Agency (USIA)--United States Information Service (USIS) overseas--is an independent agency with oversight by the DOS. The USIA helps achieve U.S. foreign policy objectives by influencing public attitudes in foreign areas. It advises the President and the various U.S. departments and agencies of the possible impact of policy, programs, and official statements on foreign opinion.

E-36. The USIA is interested in the impact of CMO on the local populace. It aids CA personnel by developing popular support. It detects and counters hostile attempts to distort and frustrate U.S. policies and programs. The USIA supports CA activities through--

  • Radio and television broadcasts.
  • Personal contacts.
  • Demonstrations.
  • Motion pictures.
  • Book publication and distribution.
  • Exhibits.
  • English language instruction.


E-37. The USAID is an autonomous agency under the policy direction of the International Development Cooperation Agency of the DOS. It supervises and directs all developmental assistance programs under the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 and similar legislation. The USAID plans and supports programs having long-term goals of improving economic and social conditions. CA elements must coordinate with USAID through the political advisor or SAO. This arrangement ensures a coordinated effort to accomplish U.S. objectives.

E-38. Foreign assistance provided by the USAID may elevate the populace's esteem for U.S. forces and thus enhance the commander's efforts. To avoid redundancy, the CMO staff must inform the commander and supporting PSYOP and PA elements on USAID programs.

E-39. The USAID places its emphasis on four major areas:

  • Market forces. The USAID strives to stimulate market economies in developing nations and to interest U.S. companies in investing in those countries.

  • Policy dialogue. Governments of many developing countries have policies that hinder economic growth. The USAID emphasizes the importance of policy reform to development progress.

  • Institution building. Schools, colleges, training organizations, supportive government ministries, and other institutions are all necessary to economic growth of developing nations.

  • Technology transfer. The transfer of appropriate technology enables countries to develop their own products. Research is a critical part of this process.

E-40. CA activities should not duplicate or negatively impact USAID assistance. CA personnel must coordinate H/CA and MCA projects with USAID efforts to ensure they complement each other. The USAID also provides foreign economic assistance, which fits into two main categories: development assistance (normally loans and grants) and the economic support fund, which is part of the SA program. The goal of development assistance is to improve living standards through financial aid to self-help programs. The economic support fund promotes economic and political stability in areas where the United States has special security interests. Fund resources meet a variety of needs. Examples include balance of payments, infrastructure financing, development programs, and other capital projects.

E-41. The OFDA is an office of the USAID. It coordinates the U.S. Government's OCONUS response to natural and man-made disasters and focuses primarily on complex international emergencies, such as famines and civil wars. The OFDA provides five life-sustaining interventions: food, medical care, shelter, water, and sanitation. This assistance is provided through--

  • Special emergency authorities.
  • Grants to NGOs and IOs.
  • DARTs.


E-42. DOD SA programs encompass SAOs that are titled differently in various countries, depending on the scope of their activities and the desires of the FN. When a country team does not have an SAO assigned as a separate entity, the defense attaché assumes the responsibilities for SA. When assigned to an embassy or mission, these personnel work for and report to the Ambassador or COM, not the senior military commander in country.


E-43. The DOJ has projects and activities ongoing in foreign countries. The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) are agencies of the DOJ. The DEA conducts CD operations, among other activities. The INS is the lead agency for civilians seeking asylum in the United States.


E-44. The Department of Transportation (DOT) can, upon request, support specific CA activities. Support that reduces military requirements aids the U.S. military effort. The strategic-level CMO staff must maintain a working knowledge of specific DOT capabilities and operations in its region.


E-45. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has a direct impact on the population and is a source of detailed area study information. The USDA has projects and activities ongoing in foreign countries. It can provide technical help to CA activities, if requested. Additionally, coordinated CMO and USDA projects can be developed for a given country or region.


E-46. The Department of Commerce (DOC) has technical expertise in areas of trade, economics, and business regulations. DOC expertise can be used to support CA activities. CMO planners must consider U.S. commerce policies that support interagency cooperation. The long-term effects of CA activities can bring commercial as well as political stability to the area.


E-47. Before deployment, CA personnel must know what agencies and organizations are in their assigned area. These organizations may conduct operations that are humanitarian (short-term) or developmental (long-term) in scope. The sponsoring groups or agencies may be private corporations, foundations, professional associations, or religious groups. With careful and proper coordination, these agencies and organizations can augment or enhance CA activities. In coordinating with NGOs, the CMO staff officer must evaluate NGO goals and objectives and consider their effect on the military mission. NGOs are generally concerned with humanitarian objectives. These objectives create a relationship between the NGO and the local populace and the government. NGOs may support the CMO effort by--

  • Conducting welfare and relief programs.
  • Volunteering to assist in the establishment and development of educational programs and facilities.
  • Teaching and conducting public health enhancement programs.
  • Caring for the sick and injured.
  • Establishing and maintaining orphanages, sanitariums, or other institutions.
  • Advising the local populace on agriculture, industry, and trade developments.
  • Establishing and maintaining camps for DCs.
  • Developing immigration programs for DCs.

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