The Largest Security-Cleared Career Network for Defense and Intelligence Jobs - JOIN NOW

Military

Combat Service Support (CSS)

by LTC Ronald Sutton, MAJ John Catino, MAJ Robert Glisson, and CW4 David Delahoy

Introduction
Table of Contents
Support Aviation in Deep Operations

Successful operational and tactical logistics provides the right combat service support (CSS) at the right time and place during combat operations. The focus of CSS is on manning and arming tactical units, fixing and fueling their equipment, moving soldiers, equipment, and supplies, and sustaining soldiers and their systems. A tactical commander must thoroughly integrate logistics support into his concept of operations. To successfully support the commander's plan, the supporting CSS units must be mobile and responsive.

Logistics planning at all levels involves several critical decisions concerning the interface of combat, combat support (CS), and CSS activities. Support of major operations requires organizing capabilities and resources into an overall logistical concept. Logistics planning and operations must be versatile and complement combat plans and operations, helping the supported unit to accomplish its mission.

To support deep operations, logistical units can carry their support resources (i.e., various classes of supply) throughout the mission, or they can receive resupplies over lines of communication. CSS planners must thoroughly analyze both methods for strengths and weaknesses. In either case, the CSS commander must update the supported unit commander on the assets available, their likely usage and sustainment prospects, and the likely consequences for the supported forces.

The Corps Support Command (COSCOM) tasked one of its Corps Support Groups (CSG) to support TF Hawk. Upon deployment notification, the CSG tailored its task organization based on the necessary personnel, equipment and sustainment assets to establish the Theater Staging Base (TSB) in Tirana Airfield. The CSG was a composite of various assigned and attached units. Organic assets included company or teams from its multifunctional Corps Support Battalions (CSBs), which provided ground, missile and aviation maintenance and supply support. Additionally, the CSG task organization included engineer, medical, and transportation units, field and personnel services, finance, and postal operations. The Corps Materiel Management Center (CMMC) and Logistics Support Elements (LSEs) from the Army Materiel Command (AMC) and the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) were also to be collocated with the CSG.

Force Deployment

Deployment is the component of force projection that focuses on the relocation of forces and materiel to the desired area of operation. During this operation, TF Hawk units went through the Reception, Staging, Onward Movement, and Integration (RSO&I) process, which consists of four interrelated processes in the theater of operations required to transform arriving personnel and materiel into forces capable of meeting operational requirements. The functions of RSO&I are applicable across the entire spectrum of military operations and at all levels of war: strategic, operational, and tactical.

Reception: Unloading personnel and equipment from strategic or operational transport, marshalling local area transport (if required), and providing life support to the deploying personnel. Reception is often the interface between the strategic and the operational levels.

Staging: Assembling, holding, and organizing arriving personnel and equipment into units and forces, incrementally building combat power and preparing units for onward movement; and providing life support for the personnel until the unit becomes self-sustaining.

Onward Movement: Moving units and accompanying materiel from reception facilities and/or marshalling or staging areas to tactical assembly areas (TAAs) or other theater destinations; moving arriving non-unit personnel to gaining commands and moving arriving sustainment materiel from reception facilities to distribution sites. Staging and onward movement are normally within the operational level.

Integration: Synchronizing the transfer of authority over units and forces to a designated component or functional commander for employment in the theater of operations. Integration represents the interface between the operational and tactical levels of war.

Because of insufficient ground lines of communications (LOCs) within Albania, TF Hawk deployed in country and was logistically sustained almost exclusively by air. Rinas Airfield in Tirana was the Task Force's sole Aerial Port of Debarkation (APOD), the only airfield in Albania capable of handling the massive U.S. Air Force cargo aircraft that brought in TF Hawk's personnel and equipment. This created difficulties in both reception and staging.

Since TF Hawk staged and set up for tactical operations at Rinas Airfield, the airport also served as the Theater Staging Base (TSB) and Tactical Assembly Area (TAA). Because the TSB and TAA were collocated, no significant challenges existed in the onward movement and integration portions of RSO&I. However, this article discusses the difficulties in shared use of main supply routes (MSRs) between TF Hawk and NATO coalition forces in support of humanitarian relief operations (HRO). We consider the challenges faced here to be part of the onward movement phase.

Reception

The primary airlift challenge that TF Hawk faced was the lack of airports, not the lack of available aircraft. Once on the ground, the APOD personnel faced challenges in the area of reception, which included the maximum capacity of aircraft that could be received, intransit visibility (ITV), communications, and cargo processing.

Photo of aircraft

Maximum On Ground (MOG): A constraining factor for APOD throughput is the working MOG defined as how many parked aircraft can be worked simultaneously. A limited MOG restricts the inbound flow of aircraft, which creates a backlog in the deployment process pipeline. The airfield was split between the Humanitarian "Shining Hope" operation and the TF Hawk operation. Both operations competed for aircraft loading and unloading as well as other airfield resources.

The TF Hawk APOD MOG was three aircraft consisting of two C17s for deploying forces and one C130 for sustainment. The MOG for SHINING HOPE was four aircraft. To hasten off-load in a combat zone, the USAF conducted Engine Run Offloads (EROs) with the combat-loaded Army equipment which accelerated the aircraft off-load process.

Intransit Visibility (ITV): The APOD served as the primary port of entry node for all deploying TF Hawk personnel and early entry forces in theater. The buildup of combat power occurred incrementally over several weeks. Both the Air Force and Army experienced problems maintaining visibility over these in-bound assets (soldiers, equipment, and supplies). The automated systems commonly used by the Air Force, Global Transportation Network ((GTN), a Joint system), Remote Consolidated Aerial Port System ((RCAPS), an Air Force system), and the Global Decision Support System ((GDSS), an Air Force system) were unavailable. They were unavailable due to either fielding changes or lack of internet access. Therefore, the Army was not able to receive ITV information from the Air Force. Since the Army lacked internet access also, it could not obtain ITV from its own GTN system.

APOD operations consisted of two parts. An Air Force Air Mobility Squadron (AMS) and Tanker-Airlift Control Element (TALCE) conducted terminal operations while an Army Arrival/Departure Airfield Control Group (A/DACG) performed the air terminal support functions. Doctrinally, some TALCE ITV functions include:

  • Advise the A/DACG on the airflow and expected arrival of aircraft.
  • Inform the A/DACG on operational changes.
  • Ensure communications between the TALCE and A/DACG.

Because the Air Force initially lacked the ITV systems, the Air Force conducted workarounds, which consisted of several traditional methods. The TALCE received mission schedules one day before execution and provided it to the A/DACG as a warning order. On the day of execution, both the TALCE and A/DACG telephonically contacted their counterparts at home-station for updates. Even with these workarounds, the only reliable ITV occurred after the aircraft landed. Providing the A/DACG ample leadtime can enhance APOD throughput because it allows the A/DACG to coordinate limited transportation assets in advance.

Communications: To perform its mission efficiently, the A/DACG required access to a Local Area Network (LAN) and telephone. The A/DACG uses the GTN, which requires connection to a LAN, to receive classified and unclassified ITV. Access to the LAN allows deploying units to receive updated information such as expected arrival times of equipment and personnel. Telephone lines in the A/DACG operations cell would have helped unit liaisons resolve issues on site.

Cargo Processing: To handle the large quantities of arriving material, an A/DACG with a robust port opening package was required early in the deployment. To prevent a backlog of off-loaded materiel at the APOC and maximize the efficiency of the port clearance operation, it was essential that the A/DACG port opening package arrive in its entirety.

Doctrinally, the reception process involves unloading personnel and equipment from strategic or operational transport. The Army and Air Force share the responsibilities for operating APODs. The Air Force is responsible for the airfield including air terminal control, loading, unloading and servicing of aircraft. The Army is responsible for clearing personnel and cargo. During the deployment, the A/DACG's port opening package included MHE and cargo transports, which were to be used in tandem to clear materiel from the flight line to the unit area. When the MACOM changed the priority of airflow, it split the port opening package. This split disrupted unit integrity and created a two-day gap between the arrival of the MHE and the cargo transports. The A/DACG managed to compensate for this shortfall by borrowing equipment from the Air Force and other deployed units.

Units can do several things to ease the reception process at the APOD. First, units can designate liaisons at the APOD to receive inbound personnel and equipment. Many units arrived unaware of where their staging areas were located or to whom they should report because of the frequent changes in task organization. In addition, a cluster of personnel around the off-load area adds to the confusion of an already complex operation. As an interim fix, DACG personnel provided temporary shelter (if available) to the arriving unit until the problem was resolved. There was no established Passenger Holding Area (PHA) for inbound personnel.

Secondly, units should mark their pallets in a manner that allows easy identification if standard markers are absent. Some pallets arrived unmarked and were undeliverable until a unit representative found them. As a minimum, each pallet should have a pallet board on adjacent sides containing the following information and documents:

  • Transportation Control Number (TCN), used for tracking by Army and Air Force ITV systems.
  • DD Form 1387, Military Shipping Label (formerly known as the LOGMARS label), used for ITV.
  • AF Form 2279 (Pallet ID) sheet which contains basic information such as unit name and UIC.
  • Weatherproof shipping envelope containing the Packing List and other documents such as HAZMAT.

Staging

During this operation, infrastructure and space challenged TF Hawk in the areas of cargo processing and unit staging. The lack of a hard surface road network within the TSB hindered delivery of unit equipment to the deployed units. Limited space for cargo processing made materiel handling difficult and slowed the loading and unloading process. In fact, inbound, outbound and frustrated cargo were initially staged in a confined area (100 square meters). Additionally, muddy terrain made it difficult to access some units. These units were assigned staging locations that could not geographically support their operation because of space constraints, muddy terrain, and safety considerations. The infrastructure and space constraints gradually improved when engineer assets began arriving and the ground dried out.

Onward movement

Both TF Hawk and the NATO coalition force in support of HRO in Albania used the same MSR to support their missions. The designated MSR was the only suitable route available to access their forward operating areas. For operational security (OPSEC) reasons, TF Hawk wanted to withhold movements' information from the NATO coalition force, which controls the MSR. The NATO coalition force used the MSR for both logistics resupply and refugee retrograde operations. The TF Hawk movements conflicted with both refugee retrogrades and humanitarian logistic resupply operations.

In an attempt to resolve the challenge, TF Hawk provided a liaison to the NATO coalition forces' Joint Operations Center (JOC) and the Joint Movement Control Center (JMCC). However, the representative did not have authorization to relay detailed tactical movements. The TF Hawk liaison's role was to relay humanitarian movements back to TF Hawk, but not vice-versa. Although a step in the right direction, this one-sided exchange of movements' information did not fully resolve the conflicting priorities on the only MSR essential to the success of both missions.

FM 100-17-3, Reception, Staging, Onward movement, and Integration, states that, "The theater movement control plan is key to a sound movement control system. The plan integrates the transportation capabilities of the component commands, and produces a movement control system with centralized planning and decentralized execution." Additionally, Joint Publication 4-0 adds that, "Inadequate control of movement, whether into or within the theater, results in waste, reduced logistic efficiency and consequently, a loss of potential combat power."

Lessons Learned:

  • The TALCE and A/DACG require NIPRNET (Nonsecure Internet Protocol Router Network) and SIPRNET (Secure Internet Protocol Router Network) access for their ITV systems.

  • Collocate an A/DACG liaison with decisionmaking authority with the TALCE's ITV section to enhance information dissemination and resolve issues.

  • If not present in theater, include an A/DACG capability in the lead elements of the transported force.

  • Splitting unit integrity may degrade performance by separating mission-essential equipment needed to perform the mission efficiently.

  • Strategic planners should sequence a robust A/DACG port-opening package early in the Time-Phased Force Deployment Data (TPFDD) to ensure that personnel and equipment arriving at the APOD continue moving through the port to the staging area.

  • A thorough APOD site reconnaissance with task force unit liaisons would have enhanced throughput efficiency because the liaisons would have provided direct input into the planning process.

  • Consider the effects of weather on the terrain selected for staging operations.

  • Sequence Engineer assets early in the TPFDD flow when operating in austere environments to improve the existing infrastructure for cargo processing and unit staging.

  • Refer to Chapter 5, Onward movement, and Appendix I, Movement Control Operations, in FM 100-17-3 for improving Onward movement operations when building combat power.

  • De-conflict movement along the MSR with the controlling authority, the JMCC in this operation, since the NATO coalition force had the authority to control all coalition movements along the MSR.

  • Allow the JMCC's tactical liaison officer to be an integral part of the movements planning process with full authority to influence theater movements.

Supply Operations

The CSG Supply Support Activity (SSA) was TF Hawk's "hub" for all managed resupply items, less ammunition, fuel, and medical. The CSG encountered several challenges in establishing a SSA to manage TF supplies and sustainment parts. It deployed 20 soldiers from various units within the CSG. However, the SSA still needed critical non-commissioned officers (NCOs) for stock control, issue and turn-in sections, and additional supply specialist personnel to perform receipt processing, storage, issue, and pallet-handling functions. These personnel were needed to provide quality control and help reduce the large huge backlog of air cargo pallets arriving in theater. To off-set this personnel shortfall, the CSG received augmentees from non-CSG units and contract personnel.

Photo of CSG soldier in SSA processing receipts and moving them to a storage location

CSG soldier in SSA processing receipts and moving them to a storage location.

During initial deployment, units had to coordinate with the SSA to ensure it had a proper Department of Defense Activity Address Code (DODAAC) or derivative unit identifier code (UIC). Supply doctrine requires that deploying units have a DODAAC or derivative UIC to request supplies and equipment. This caused a slight delay in some units' ability to requisition supplies. Assigning the SSA a DODAAC early during deployment is important because the DODAACs are reported to other strategic logistics organizations such as DLA, AMC, General Services Administration (GSA), Aerial Port of Debarkation (APOD) and Seaport Port of Debarkation (SPOD). These organizations track requisitions, issue repair parts/supplies, and monitor the logistical pipeline. Thus, the SSA, CMMC, Corps G4, and Central Region (CR) resolved the matter expeditiously without adverse impact on the mission.

Because of the compressed deployment timelines and changes to the original TF requirements and force structure, the SSA built its authorized stockage list (ASL) based on the equipment densities. On arrival in theater, it made adjustments to off-set the additional units deployed. The previously built robust "push packages" of repair parts for Maintenance Support Teams (MSTs), developed for another contingency, became the baseline to help roundout the ASL. The SSA was eventually established at 1,700 lines. Additionally, prior to deployment, units were instructed to draw ASL as Prescribed Load List (PLL) items from their supported home-station SSA and store them in ISU90 containers. After deployment into theater, the SSA received and manually verified the ISU90 contents and inputted the information into the Standard Army Retail Supply System (SARSS).

The SSA used SARSS as its automated supply mechanism to requisition, receive, store, inventory, and process the various classes of supply. Because of the lack of data communication linkages with home station during the initial deployment phase, SARSS was unable to process supply data the first few days. It wasn't until the AMC-LSE arrived and provided the SSA with a communication means using its International Maritime Satellite (INMARSAT) communication "fly-away" package that it was able to process requisitions. The SSA later migrated to a Non-secure Internet Protocol Network (NIPRNET) to conduct its supply mission. Establishing SARSS quickly and preparing storage sites were extremely important because 20 to 25 cargo pallets were arriving daily via ALOC from CONUS depots and theater distribution center (TDC).

Photo of receipt processing section in SSA

Receipt processing section in SSA.

The high volume of cargo pallets that needed processing and high customer support requirements required the SSA to established two work shifts to reduce the backlog while still trying to organize its storage locations. Swampland was reclaimed and graveled, and the main road network was widened for two-way traffic that provided a pallet yard area and facilitated through traffic. The CSG SSA achieved mission success for TF Hawk through initiatives, outstanding leadership and the dedicated efforts of its soldiers. Although the SSA had key personnel shortages and limited indoor and outdoor storage locations, it managed to continue providing outstanding customer support for the deployed forces.

Lessons Learned:

  • Assigning units a deployment DODAAC or derivative UIC prior to deployment greatly reduces supply problems in theater.

  • The Army should review the personnel and equipment requirements for Split-Based Operations (SBO). Units must deploy with sufficient personnel and mission-essential support packages such as SARSS to sustain combat readiness.

Arming-Class V Operations: The CSG was responsible for receiving, storing, issuing, and providing security for ammunition stocks. TF Hawk units deployed with their ammunition basic load via ALOC from home station while other ammunition stocks were shipped from CR. One ammunition platoon had the mission to receive, store, and issue ammunition. The transportation company transported the ammunition to the ammunition storage point (ASP) holding area where it was inventoried and entered into the accountable records system or the Standard Army Ammunition System-Modern (SAAS-MOD). Later, the ammunition was taken to a designated storage location and separated by field storage categories. Most of the ammunition was placed in either a roadside storage site or existing covered locations. For safety purposes, contractors erected Hesco-Bastion barriers alongside all the roadside storage locations to reduce the dangers of explosion and cleared large areas of vegetation to create fire breaks within the storage sites.

Photo of organizing unit ammunition basic loads

Class V Storage -- Organizing unit ammunition basic loads.

The ammunition platoon established the ASP to store six days of supply (DOS), the command stockage objective (SO) for mission critical munitions. However, after the ASP was established, the objective was set to increase the SO to 15 DOS once the proposed new ASP site was built. Although this SO was never reached, the amount of ammunition requiring storage still exceeded the initial command SO of six DOS for some Department of Defense Identification Codes (DODICs).

Photo of ammunition storage area protected using Hesco-Bastion barriers filled with gravel

Ammunition storage area protected using Hesco-Bastion barriers filled with gravel.

To handle ammunition movement, the platoon used one 6,000-lb commercial forklift, two 6000-lb rough-terrain variable-reach forklifts (RTFLs), and one 10,000-lb forklift. The 6,000-lb commercial forklift was not well suited for the rough terrain in the ASP, although it was effective for hard-surface operations. The two authorized 6,000-lb RTFLs were suitable for handling and moving most types of ammunition over rough terrain in the ASP, but lacked the lifting capability to handle larger munitions, such as the Multiple-Launch Rocket System (MLRS) pods. For that, the ammunition platoon needed to borrow a 10K forklift from an adjacent unit. During predeployment, the unit identified the 10K forklift as needed MHE. However, because of other priorities, the forklift was delayed in the equipment flow and never arrived.

Lessons Learned:

  • MHE assets are critical and must receive priority in deploying forces equipment planning. Ammunition platoons definitely need its MHE to move and store heavy ammunition stocks such as the MLRS pods.

  • Hesco-Bastions barriers (force protection asset) reduced the safety risk for stocks given the limited space.

Fueling - Class III Operations: Providing clear priorities for fueling, accurately estimating fuel consumption, and economizing assets whenever possible to ensuring adequate support of operations. Since this was an Aviation deep attack mission, a careful planning of fuel requirements and establishment of future Refuel On the Move (ROM) sites was necessary. To support TF Hawk, tankers and fuel bladders were used. Due to limited terrain, fuel farms were located too close to troop-living areas and vehicles. However, as engineers and contractors cleared other terrain areas, priority was placed on relocating those farms to safer areas.

Ground and Aviation Maintenance Operations

Ground Maintenance: The CSG deployed to the AO with a task organization of four different ground maintenance companies to perform base camp support. Upon arrival in theater, one company was designated as the lead base camp direct support maintenance company. Organic and attached CSG units performed their own preventive maintenance checks and services (PMCS). The lead base support maintenance company encountered several challenges to providing responsive maintenance support: limited availability of hard surface areas for maintenance diagnostics; minimal shop, bench and PLL stocks; few technical manuals; insufficient numbers of MOS competencies; and an insufficient quantity of test equipment. Also, several support units failed to deploy with their Unit Level Logistics System (ULLS) boxes to maintain their maintenance systems and request repair parts. This required loading several units onto one ULLS box, thus creating a problem when trying to consolidate AMSS data for TF Hawk.

Photo of maintenance personnel repairing hose using the Histru Repair Hose System on the Maintenance Contact Truck

Maintenance personnel repairing hose using the Histru Repair Hose System
on the Maintenance Contact Truck.

Most of these challenges arose from changes in TF Hawk's deployment timelines, task organization changes, and force structure cap. However, the lead base maintenance company organized personnel and equipment assets from assigned and attached CSG units. The unit cleared two old buildings for vehicle inspection, diagnostics, and repairs; consolidated repair parts stockage from other units; established maintenance control procedures; coordinated replenishment parts with the SSA; and maintained liaison with home station. The base camp maintenance support company repaired everything from electronic components, generators, heavy engineer equipment, missile system components, forklifts, hoses, and all types of wheeled and tracked vehicles.

Lessons Learned:

  • Units should deploy with sufficient TMs, PLL, battery chargers, system-specific special tools and other organic assets, such as their ULLS automation capability on deployments to the theater (this includes deploying trained ULLS operators).

  • Ensure and prepare a "robust" support package with the necessary personnel and equipment to support deploying forces and conduct of SBO.

Aviation Maintenance: Aviation maintenance units faced many challenges in support of TF Hawk. The most critical elements in providing aviation maintenance support were the demands of Split-Based Operations. The blending of aviation maintenance units unaccustomed to working together was another challenge. Nevertheless, aviation maintenance personnel overcame these challenges and provided superior maintenance and logistical support for TF Hawk aviation assets, ensuring timely mission success.

The number of attack helicopters in TF Hawk was limited to 24 AH-64s. To facilitate continuous operations, the TF Attack Helicopter Regiment deployed almost all of its personnel from its headquarters and two squadrons. However, to meet the cap placed on deployed aircraft, each squadron deployed only 12 AH-64s, half the authorized strength. The regiment conducted continuous operations by rotating each squadron through 24-hour cycles. To increase aircraft availability for continuous operations, each squadron deployed all 24 crew chiefs to maintain the 12 deployed aircraft. By placing two crew chiefs on each AH-64, the squadrons increased aircraft readiness and their ability to conduct continuous operations.

Photo of AH-64 preparing for test flight after rotor head change and extensive AVIM maintenance

AH-64 preparing for test flight after rotor head change and extensive AVIM maintenance.

The anticipated deep operations mission also affected the organization of the TF Hawk AVIM unit. Supporting the corps AVIM needs required blending the personnel of two maintenance companies and their equipment and leadership to maintain the TF Apache, Blackhawk, and Chinook airframes. This required creative decisionmaking to determine methods for sharing special tools and personnel needed to support the home-station mission as well as the deployed forces without deploying contractors.

Lessons Learned:

  • TF Hawk was more capable and retained greater flexibility by deploying two squadrons of AH-64A maintenance assets to support one squadron of aircraft.

  • Despite the requirement for 24 aircraft, equivalent to one squadron, the decision to deploy the assets of two squadron provided the Fully Mission Capable (FMC) airframes required to maintain the high operational tempo.

  • For rapid deployment and split operations in future deployments, restructure the unit to meet these requirements, especially in the one-deep and one-of-a-kind special tools.

  • Corps AVIM units were not structured to conduct split-based operations because of equipment and personnel densities.

Combat Health Support

Combat Health Support (CHS) for TF Hawk included several innovations. The Contingency Medical Force (CMF) was the first pre-designed comprehensive Level III healthcare facility designed to be both rapidly deployable and able to conduct continuous medical and surgical operations in an austere, ambiguous environment. A Battalion Aid Station was created for the Special Troops Battalion to provide area medical support for the Deep Operations Coordination Center. A Forward Support Medical Company from a division deployed to provide comprehensive Levels I and II combat health support for the task force in lieu of a doctrinal Area Support Medical Company. Various medical teams representing medical logistics, preventive medicine, veterinary medicine, combat stress control, and dental contributed greatly to the overall mission in spite of enduring shortages in both equipment and personnel. An Aeromedical Evacuation Liaison Team from the Air Force, as well as a Casualty Assistance Team from the theater personnel command also ably augmented the CMF. Ground and air evacuation units from the theater supported the entire task force.

A particularly valuable innovation involved the attachment of the Air Ambulance Company to the Aviation Brigade, instead of the medical command. This enabled the company commander to play an active role in the development of evacuation planning instead of working with the aviation assets externally. The commander sat in the meetings as a green-tab commander and had complete access to all information necessary for him to accomplish his mission. Access to aviation supply and maintenance was easier to attain, as well as integration into the Army Airspace Command and Control (A2C2) plan. By having direct input with the aviation brigade commander, the medical company commander was able to demonstrate the company's capabilities. This also enabled the medical company commander to be included with the Downed Aircraft and Aircrew Recovery Team (DAART). This team consisted of a security team, a command and control aircraft, and a MEDEVAC aircraft. The MEDEVAC aircraft was an UH-60B equipped with a high-performance hoist, enabling the aircrew to extract casualties from rugged Balkan terrain.

To ensure that prompt release authority is available to them, medical commanders traditionally prefer to retain aeromedical evacuation under their direct command and control. But the many benefits derived by placing the MEDEVAC units under aviation control in the field makes this a viable option for future operations.

Strategic Logistics Support: The AMC and DLA were invaluable assets to the CSG and TF Hawk. Both provided logistics support elements (LSEs) that assisted the corps and CSG staff elements in strategic logistics. The LSEs collocated with the CSG and were well integrated with rest of the CSG staff. The AMC-LSE was an invaluable asset to the CSG maintenance and supply operation. It augmented the CSG in expediting repair parts and provided technical assistance and training to TF Hawk.

AMC Logistics Assistance Representatives (LARs) deployed with sufficient teams to integrate logistics planning and expedite supply and maintenance support, both ground and air, to TF Hawk. They provided technical advice, supply and maintenance soldier training, communication linkages, and maintenance diagnostics troubleshooting. They expedited receipt of Army managed repair parts, provided TIER III maintenance support for office automation equipment, and supported maintenance, supply services, and critical logistics communications. The AMC-LSE deployed with a portable communications package, the INMARSAT that provided CSG logisticians an independent capability to communicate with home station until command nets were established. This communication package was critical in providing a wide area network for the SSA automated SARSS back to home station.

The LSE also provided both voice and data communication capabilities. Additionally, the LSE provided the only commercial (civilian) telephone line available, which was critical in communicating with the Military Traffic Management Command (MTMC) since they had only commercial communication and other supply activities in the Central Region that interfaced with DLA.

DLA provides several types of logistics support to the armed forces. It is responsible for eliminating logistical redundancy and standardizing common supplies. The team facilitated integrating materiel management support of DLA common commodities such as subsistence, clothing and other general supplies package/bulk petroleum, and medical materiel. It collocated with the CSG primary staff, CMMC, and the AMC-LSE.

Lessons Learned:

  • Deploying an AMC-LSE early in the operation is a combat multiplier.

  • AMC-E LSE "fly away" communications (INMARSAT) helped the SSA conduct Split-Based Operations (SBOs) for its SAARS communication link.

  • AMC-E LSA's ability to tap into technical expertise quickly adverted long lead times and decreased non-mission capable deadlines.

Contractor Support: During TF Hawk, the Army used civilian contractor augmentees to support its deployed forces. The Logistics Civil Augmentation Program (LOGCAP) is an Army program governed by AR 700-137, LOGCAP. It incorporates civilian contractors to augment Army forces and perform selected engineering and logistical services in wartime or other contingency operations. The contractor provided field services such as laundry, semi-permanent latrine and shower facilities, potable water, transportation, maintenance, and supply support. They also assumed dining facility operations and conducted facilities upgrades.

References:

FM 100-10, Combat Service Support
FM 63-2-2, Combat Service Support Operations
FM 54-30, Corps Support Groups
FM 9-6, Munitions Support in the Theater of Operations
AR 700-137, LOGCAP

Introduction
Table of Contents
Support Aviation in Deep Operations



NEWSLETTER
Join the GlobalSecurity.org mailing list


One Billion Americans: The Case for Thinking Bigger - by Matthew Yglesias