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Worldwide missions demand an appropriate mix of forces. This mix includes active, National Guard (NG), and US Army Reserve (USAR) forces in combat, combat support (CS), and combat service support (CSS) units to meet the various mission requirements around the globe. In some cases, division commanders may execute plans for the reception and training of mobilized reserve component (RC) units.

In Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm, the United States demonstrated its capability to assemble, deploy, and rapidly project military forces. The 1st Battalion 158th Field Artillery (Multiple-Launch Rocket System) of the Oklahoma Army National Guard, for example, was alerted for mobilization on 15 November 1990, and federalized on 21 November 1990. The 1-158th FA (MLRS) arrived at its mobilization station, Fort Sill, on 24 November 1990. The battalion's equipment was processed at the mobilization station and shipped to a seaport of embarkation (SPOE) within 24 days of federalization. The battalion, minus equipment, deployed to Southwest Asia on 31 January 1991. Once in country, the battalion awaited the arrival of its equipment. At the seaport of debarkation (SPOD), the battalion off-loaded its own equipment, moved to its VII corps assembly area, and fired in the initial preparation fires for the ground offensive on 22 February 1991. The 1-158th FA mobilized, deployed, and participated in combat fire missions within 82 days from call-up. In other examples, RC units were alerted, mobilized, and deployed into the area of operations in as little as two days.


The end of the cold war has resulted in changes in the national security strategy and the national military strategy. The Army has gone from a forward-deployed to a forward-presence, primarily CONUS-based, force-projection Army. The result is a dramatic

increase in reserve forces' participation in all areas of operation. Understanding the impact of RC mobilization is critical to mission success. Authority for RC mobilization resides in the National Command Authorities (NCA) and the US Congress. The NCA must authorize both the movement of troops and the execution of military actions. y law, no one else in the chain of command has he authority to take such action. The graduated mobilization response (GMR) is key in the mobilization process. The GMR provides for five levels or options which can be adjusted for the degree of severity and ambiguity of the situation. These levels are-

  • Presidential selected reserve call-up (PSRC). Title 10, United States Code (USC) 673(b), authorizes the President to involuntarily call up 200,000 members (all services) of the selected reserve as individuals or units for 180 days, with an extension of up to 180 days. This PSRC authority does not require the President to declare a national emergency; it does require a report to the US Congress within 24 hours.

  • Partial mobilization. Title 10, USC 673(a), authorizes the mobilization of 1,000,000 ready reserve (all services) members for up to 24 months using a Presidential executive order upon proclamation of a national emergency. Congress may declare a state of national emergency and subsequent reserve mobilization under Title 10, USC 672(d). The congressional declaration does

Army National Guard Separate Brigades
Rear Operations Cell
Individual Mobilization Augmentation
Medium Divisions

not limit the number ofreservists mobilized or the length of tour unless specified in the resolution.

  • Full mobilization. Title 10, USC 671(a), 672,674, and 675 authorize the call-up of all forces in the current force structure, including NG and USAR units, individual ready reserve, standby reserve, and members of the retired reserve. In addition, Congress must declare that a state of national emergency or war exists. The length of service is for the duration of the national emergency or war plus six months.

  • Total mobilization. This is an extension of full mobilization. It activates and organizes additional units beyond the current approved force structure. Total mobilization brings the industrial mobilization base up to full capacity to provide the additional resources, equipment, and production facilities needed to support the armed forces of the nation.

  • Selective mobilization. This is used primarily for domestic emergencies or natural disasters. It is authorized under Title 10, USC 3500, 8500, 331, 332, and 333. The President or Congress, through proclamation or special action, authorizes an expansion of the active duty force with NG or USAR units to protect life, federal property, and functions, or to prevent the disruption of federal activities.


Division commanders consider augmenting their forces for operations under the authorities just mentioned. Specifically, division commanders may request, through their chains of command, call-up and attachment of an Army National Guard separate brigade, activation of their division's rear operations cell (ROC), or individual Army reserve augmentations to fill special skill requirements. Plans call for medium divisions to also be available to the Army.

Army National Guard Separate Brigades

Some Army National Guard brigade-sized units are currently designated as separate brigades. These

brigades provide the Army with an additional go-to-war capability when mobilized. The structure of these brigades can best be defined as a modified separate brigade. Some have an assigned training affiliation with active Army units. Others do not. None, however, are assigned to divisions for war planning purposes.

Reserve component separate brigades are armored, mechanized, or light infantry (and one armored cavalry regiment). Armored and mechanized separate brigades comprise a brigade headquarters, three maneuver battalions, an artillery battalion, a support battalion, an engineer battalion, a military intelligence company, and an armored cavalry troop. Infantry brigades comprise a brigade headquarters, three maneuver battalions, an artillery battalion, a support battalion, an engineer company, a cavalry troop, and a military intelligence company.

Rear Operations Cell

Intrinsic to the division rear CP is the ROC. The ROC is a 19-person RC unit that augments the division's rear operations staff This augmentation results in a fully capable 24-hour division rear command post. The ROC assists with rear area planning, coordinating and controlling of rear security operations, movement control, terrain management, and damage control.

Individual Mobilization Augmentation

Individual mobilization augmentees (IMAs) are reserve personnel generally assigned to an approved TOE or table of distribution and allowances (TDA) but may be available to augment the division commander's staff in times of crisis. These soldiers may be able to provide specific skills to the division as well as fill unmanned positions in units. If special reserve augmentation is required, the division submits a request through the appropriate chain of command to the US Army Reserve Personnel Center.

Medium Divisions

Finally, the Army National Guard is developing divisions patterned after the 2d Infantry Division in Korea. This design consists of one armored, one mechanized, and one light infantry brigade with traditional division CS and CSS units. This division is designed to provide commanders with a great degree of operational flexibility. When fielded and trained,

the medium divisions' strengths and limitations should be similar to that of armored divisions.


Although Active Army divisions have very little impact on the reserve mobilization process, commanders and their staffs must know how RC units mobilize. They also must know their role in the process.

The division commander may identify and recommend or request specific types of reserve forces required to support a specific OPLAN through the appropriate chain of command. (Normally reserve units are identified in CINC-developed OPLANs and time-phased force and deployment data (TPFDD).) Early identification of any needed RC support allows for the mobilization planning of these units. Divisions routinely express their requirements to their corps headquarters.

The division commander and his staff also consider individual manpower requirements. These generally fall into four categories:

  • Manpower required to bring units up to approved authorized levels of organization.

  • Manpower required for unit filler or casualty replacements.

  • Civilian manpower required to meet expanded missions within the sustaining base and to support requirements of the supported combatant commanders.

  • Military and civilian requirements in the sustaining base.

Some IMAs are already assigned to TOE positions. These individuals are assigned against MTOEs in AC divisions. IMAs may be activated for a specific training period or a crisis.

The division or his installation commander may also be a mobilization station commander. As RC units enter active duty (or report to duty), the mobilization station commander plans for their administrative services and support. The primary concern is ensuring soldiers meet requirements and standards for active duty and processing for overseas movement (POM) deployment. These

include, but are not limited to, specific legal, medical, dental, and administrative standards. Mobilization installations will meet many of these requirements. Installation commanders may or may not request division support. The installation's planning process will certainly affect the division. (See Army Mobilization Operations Planning and Execution System.)

Initially, mobilized RC unit facility needs may not impact on the division. Under a selected or PSRC mobilization, existing structures can fill facilities requirements. However, as a GMR increases, the division or installation will have to deal with the increased demand for facilities on its installation. Commanders must also anticipate increased requirements for medical, dental, and other support. Note that during Operation Desert Storm, facilities and property accountability at some installations became a problem because deployed AC units did not completely clear their buildings.

Installation mobilization plans may require National Environmental Policy Act analysis before their final approval. (For example, increased soldier populations in older garrison areas may overburden present sewage capacities and require environmental waivers.) "Dual-hatted" commanders should be aware that environmental restrictions impact mobilization plans. They should have specific contingency plans or prenegotiated waivers to meet these requirements.

Deliberate planning must also include the impact a full or total mobilization would have on the division's facilities. Both financial management and services and contracting should be considered. Financial management and services planning should include currency support for procurement and organizational support in the area of operations (AO); field services (commissary and exchange services); military pay and travel; and central funding operations. Contracting support should be considered to fill gaps in the existing facilities and services, including billeting, food service, transportation, and medical and dental services and supplies.

Mobilization of the RC occurs in five phases: planning, alert, home station, mobilization station, and movement to port of embarkation.

Planning is the first and probably most important phase of mobilization. This phase must include both the AC and the RC during peacetime to properly plan, train, and

prepare to accomplish their assigned mobilization missions. Critical to this phase is the identification of combat, CS, and CSS units to support the various combatant commanders' CONPLANs and OPLANs. Reserve component units remain under control of their state or US Army Reserve Command (USARC) during this phase. However, AC WARTRACE and dedicated training association (DTA) units continue planning and coordination with their RC units for mobilization and employment. Thus, RC DTA unit METLs must reflect the divisions' training guidance.

The alert phase begins when an RC unit receives notice of a pending order to active duty; it ends when the unit enters active federal service (effective date of entry on federal active duty). Actions initiated in the planning phase help the unit transition to an active status. Some key unit members are brought on active status early to begin these actions. Command and control (C2) of RC units remain unchanged during this phase.

The third phase, home station mobilization, begins when RC units enter on federal active duty at their local armories or centers. It concludes upon the RC units' departure for the mobilization station (MS) or port of embarkation (POE). During this phase, the unit finalizes necessary actions to bring it to an active status and to prepare for movement to its MS or POE. Under a partial or full mobilization, command and control of RC units fall under the CONUSA.

Arrival at the mobilization station begins the next phase of mobilization. It ends as the unit arrives at the POE. All efforts focus on bringing RC units to a mission-capable status in the shortest amount of time. Processing for overseas movement and validation or certification for deployment are the major concerns of RC units during this phase. Unit validation and certification for deployment are responsibilities of the installation or garrison commander and his representatives. Command and control of mobilized RC units remain the responsibility of the mobilized units' MS installation commander. However, the division coordinates and provides liaison with the supporting RC unit.

Port of embarkation is the fifth phase of the mobilization process. It concerns those actions that occur at the POE. This phase corresponds to the second phase of deployment and begins with the units' arrival at the POE and ends on their departure from the POE. At the APOE and SPOE, units prepare and load equipment and manifest and load personnel.


Planning for demobilization is critical. The division cannot wait for crisis termination to begin planning for redeployment and demobilization of mobilized RC units. It must begin early in the process. The division's role in demobilization may be much greater than in mobilization. It begins in the division's AO with reconstitution of attached RC forces and preparation for redeployment to CONUS or OCONUS demobilization stations. There are five phases of demobilization: demobilization planning; area of operations demobilization; POE-to-demobilization station or CONUS demobilization center (CDC); demobilization station (DMS) or CDC actions; and home station home of record actions.

Demobilization planning begins concurrently with mobilization. Demobilization planning may impact on division planners in theater as RC units begin the tasks of reconstitution and demobilization while under division or corps control. This planning considers critical decisions and priorities between personnel and logistics support along with the DOD's desire to return RC soldiers to CONUS as quickly as possible. Plans must address many issues including basic equipment maintenance, disposition actions, decorations and awards, and evaluation reports. The division may also coordinate for installation support activities at both the division's home station installation and the RC unit's demobilization station. The division will be an active player in communicating demobilization plans and actions down to attached RC units.

Area of operations demobilization begins with the reconstitution of RC units. It ends when these units arrive at the POE for onward movement. Again, the division's actions in theater play a great part in the successful demobilization of RC units. Initiation of administrative and logistic actions to ensure soldiers are cared for, critical equipment is maintained, and supplies are properly accounted for is of primary importance. During this phase, the division programs RC units for movement to DMSs. These stations are usually at the same

place the units were mobilized. The division ensures units and individuals are programmed to move to POE. Other service and support actions, such as medical and dental care, are initiated (if available in theater) to further speed the demobilization process.

The POE-to-demobilization station or CONUS demobilization center phase overlaps with the redeployment phase discussed in FM 100-17. This phase ends on arrival at the DMS or CDC. Past redeployment experiences and exercises have indicated the corps or division should provide a C2 organization chartered to assist logistics organizations such as Theater Army Area Commands (TAACOMs) or the COSCOM in theater POE operations. Command of redeploying units passes from the supported CINC to the supporting CINC upon "wheels up" from the APOE or when passing the outer marker from SPOE. While in transit, the USTRANSCOM temporarily exercises control until arrival at the APOD or SPOD.

The RC units' arrival at the DMS, or individual RC soldiers' arrival at CDC, begins the fourth phase of the demobilization effort. Installation commanders ensure all necessary medical and dental actions, finance records, legal and entitlement briefings, personnel records updates, and logistics files are current before releasing units or individuals for movement to their home stations. Installation plans

for increased soldier and family support activities should be prepared for execution on arrival of returning individuals and units. Welcome-home ceremonies, which include both soldiers and families, should be planned and executed for returning units.

Home station/home of record actions is the final phase of the demobilization process. It ends with release from federal service at the RC units' home stations or the individuals' homes of record. Actions are taken at home stations to complete the demobilization process and return the units to a pure RC status. Some of these actions include turning in individual equipment, ensuring the maintenance and storage of equipment, and updating inventories and hand receipts. CONUSA issues orders (less Army special operations force (ARSOF)) establishing active duty RC units' date and time of release from active duty and subsequent reversion to RC status. The US Army Special Operations Command releases the special operations forces.

The timely and expedient demobilization and reconstitution of the reserve component are critical to success of the US force-projection Army. How well the Army redeploys, demobilizes, and reconstitutes from its last contingency operation may well determine its ability to rapidly mobilize and deploy for the next crisis or emergency situation.

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