Small Wars Journal

The Future Battlefield: Army, Marines Prepare for ‘Massive’ Fight in Megacities

The Future Battlefield: Army, Marines Prepare for ‘Massive’ Fight in Megacities by Todd South - Military Times

In the midst of the Vietnam War, U.S. troops were rocked by an offensive that saw conventional and irregular enemies sweep over territories and entrench themselves in areas of South Vietnam previously untouched by the war.

What would follow would be the most intense urban combat U.S. forces had faced since World War II.

A half century later, lessons from the Battle of Hue City are still being absorbed by today’s warfighters.

Much has changed, but much has remained the same. As Bing West, a Marine combat veteran and former assistant secretary of defense wrote, when comparing Hue and the battle for Mosul, Iraq, “urban warfare remains characterized by slow, massive destruction.”

For a long time, both the Marines and Army failed to do anything substantial to prepare for large-scale urban combat — other than to avoid it whenever possible.

But both services are now updating their urban operations doctrine for the first time in years, and their leaders, Army Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Milley and Marine Corps Commandant Gen. Robert Neller, have publicly pushed for more urban-focused efforts…

Read on.