Small Wars Journal

civil affairs

Civil Affairs: The U.S. Army’s Civil Engagement Force

Tue, 06/11/2019 - 7:43am
The early integration of civil affairs forces at all echelons is necessary to determine what resources are available to support a commander’s civil-military operations (CMO). Enabling the sharing of information and resources with all partners contributes to a position of relative advantage during all phases of competition, armed conflict, and the return to competition.

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Reducing the Dependency on USSOF: The Kosovo CACOY Example

Sun, 06/09/2019 - 1:57pm
As evidenced from the KSF CACOY example, It is critical that USSOF eventually relinquishes command and control of institution building and allows the A/PN unit to succeed, or even fail, on its own. Had CMSE XKS not enforced the importance of KSF officers conducting their own execution and problem solving, they would continue to rely on the US support.

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Calibrating Civil Affairs Forces for Human Geography

Sat, 05/18/2019 - 3:39pm
A fundamental aspect to understanding human geography, insofar as it relates to the entirety of the academic field of geography, is gaining a grasp on the sheer breadth of it. The subdisciplines of geography can be bifurcated between the physical and the social sciences. “When geography concentrates on the distribution of physical features, such as climate, soil, and vegetation, it is a physical science. When it studies cultural features, such as language, industries, and cities, geography is a social science”.

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Calibrating Civil Affairs Forces for Lethality in Large Scale Combat Operations

Mon, 03/18/2019 - 5:07am
To remain relevant in the future operational environment, CA must counter enemy hybrid warfare in the expanded battlefield, specifically in operational and tactical support areas, as part of an integrated security team through civil reconnaissance, civil network analysis, and civil network development.

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Great Power Competition: The Fight for Weak States

Wed, 01/30/2019 - 4:00am
As U.S strategy shifts towards great power competition, the U.S. Army must fully integrate civil affairs forces into their Echelons Above Brigade concept. Civil affairs are the Department of Defense’s primary force, specifically trained and educated to engage and influence the civil component of the environment.

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Civil Affairs and Civil Society: Harnessing the Latent Power of Social Bonds

Mon, 01/07/2019 - 12:22am
Civil Affairs and Joint doctrine allude to civil society’s important role within the OE. However, the concept receives only a few cursory mentions, including: defeating threats to it, mitigating vulnerabilities to it, and reintroducing former combatants into it. Civil society is addressed in neither practical nor theoretical terms. This lack of attention carries over into Civil Affairs Operations and civil-military operations.

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A New U.S. Framework for Stabilization: Opportunities for Civil Affairs

Mon, 10/22/2018 - 6:50am
Kevin Melton, Peter Quaranto, Patrick Quirk, Sara Reckless and Kelly Uribe - State-USAID-DoD Stabilization Assistance Review (SAR) - As we completed the SAR, far more than breaking new intellectual ground, we were more interested in breaking bureaucratic barriers.

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The Future of Civil Affairs: Creating Regimental Order from Chaos SWJED Fri, 10/12/2018 - 5:38am
For Civil Affairs forces to better support a broader operational approach, they must be able to plan population-centric operations to support all ranges of military operations and integrated USEMB strategies.
Special Operations Support to Conflict Prevention SWJED Thu, 10/12/2017 - 9:13pm

In the age of accelerated globalization and its toll exacted on conflict, USSOCOM should prioritize conflict prevention activities to achieve US national security objectives.