Army Chemical Review

SUMMER 2015

Army Chemical Review presents professional information about Chemical Corps functions related to chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear, smoke, flame, and civil support operations.

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17 Summer 2015 I n the summer of 2012, Brigadier General Peggy C. Combs, who was then the 27th Chief of Chemical, di- rected a review of the U.S. Army chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear (CBRN) force. The review was de- signed to assess the ability of the U.S. Army Chemical Corps to support evolving missions related to global contingency operations. The assessment revealed a Corps that was out of balance— built for a bygone era and ill- suited to counter contemporary weapons of mass destruction (WMD) threats and CBRN hazards. Consequently, Brigadier General Combs directed a force design update (FDU) in or- der to posture the force to provide the right mix of capa- bilities. In October 2014, the Vice Chief of Staff of the Army approved the CBRN FDU; and in fscal year 2016, the Army will begin transforming the CBRN force to meet future opera- tional requirements. As the Regiment evolves, it is impor- tant that the community of practice understand the reasons for the changes and the capabilities of the future force. Before executing the redesign, the Capabilities Develop- ment Integration Directorate; Concepts, Organization, and Doctrine Development Division; U.S. Army Maneuver Sup- port Center of Excellence (MSCoE), conducted an analysis of current force capabilities in relation to the capabilities di- rected through strategic guidance and combatant command operational plans. The assessment revealed a current force designed almost exclusively for the CBRN passive defense mission, with 73 percent of the current structure organized to conduct decontamination and biological detection opera- tions (see Table 1, page 18). After assessing the capabilities of the current force, the Capabilities Development Integration Directorate—with in- put from the operating force—conducted an analysis of joint force requirements. The analysis indicated that combatant commands require a CBRN force that is capable of execut- ing a wide array of missions. While the contemporary force is manned, trained, and equipped to support the CBRN de- fense mission, a large part of the force is sourced in sup- port of WMD elimination and CBRN consequence manage- ment operational plans. To execute these missions, opera- ting force commanders rely heavily on nonstandard so- lutions to provide dismounted reconnaissance and mass casualty decontamination capabilities. While these solu- tions provide initial capabilities, they are not completely supported by the generating force, which places the bur- den for training and sustainment on operational com- manders. The analysis revealed that, while the CBRN force has evolved over the past decade, it has failed to meet contemporary requirements. Change is necessary to optimize the force to support contemporary and future re- quirements. The intent of the FDU is to provide a scala- ble, tailorable force that is capable of supporting the full spectrum of missions for Army and joint commanders. The FDU is one element of an integrated doctrine, organization, training, materiel, leadership and education, personnel, and facilities–policy (DOTMLPF-P) solution set that enhances the relevance and readiness of the Chemical Regiment on the contemporary battlefeld. The CBRN Battalion: One of the requirements of the FDU is to increase the mission command capability of the CBRN force. The need for this increased capability is based on the global force management demand signal that currently sources battal- ion headquarters to support WMD elimination and conse- quence management operations. The complexity of the mis- sions requires increased technical and tactical expertise to "Change is necessary to optimize the force to support contemporary and future requirements. The intent of the FDU is to provide a scalable, tailorable force that is capable of supporting the full spectrum of missions for Army and joint commanders."

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