Joint Staff Officers Guide AFSC Pub 1 -- 1997

Appendix G CINCís Strategic Concept

This description is adapted from Joint Pub 5-03.1 (to be published as CJCSM 3122.01).

This annex contains guidance for the format and content of the Basic Plan and CINCís Strategic Concept to be used for the development of operation plans (OPLANs) or concept plans (CONPLANs). The Strategic Concept format will be used to forward the CINCís concept of operations for CJCS concept review.



Issuing Headquarters



Command Plan Number (U)

Plan Title

( ) REFERENCES: List any maps, charts, or other documents essential to comprehension of the Basic Plan.


1. ( ) Situation

a. ( ) General. Describe the general politico-military environment that would establish the probable preconditions for execution of the plan. When submitting a CINCís Strategic Concept, include as an opening statement in this subparagraph a reference to the task assignment from the Joint Strategic Capabilities Plan (JSCP) or other task-assigning document. Summarize the competing political goals that caused the conflict. Identify primary antagonists. State U.S. policy goals and the estimated goals of other parties, and political decisions wanted from other countries in order to obtain U.S. policy goals and conduct effective U.S. military operations to attain U.S. military missions.

b. ( ) Area of Concern

(1) ( ) Area of Responsibility. Describe the geography of the commanderís area of responsibility. A map may also be included as an attachment.

(2) ( ) Area of Interest. Describe the geography of the general area of interest covered by the CINCís Strategic Concept and/or Basic Plan. This description should cover all air, ground, and sea areas that directly affect the operation. A map may also be included as attachments.

(3) ( ) Area of Operations. Describe the geography of the specific areas to be covered in each option contained in the CINCís Strategic Concept and/or Basic Plan. Maps may also be included as attachments.

c. ( ) Deterrent Options. Delineate desired deterrent options, including categories specified in the current JSCP. Specific units (type of units for CINCís Strategic Concept format) and resources will be prioritized in terms of LAD relative to C-day. Include possible military support for diplomatic, political, or economic deterrent options that would support U.S. mission accomplishment.

d. ( ) Enemy Forces. Identify the opposing forces expected on execution and appraise their general capabilities. When preparing the Basic Plan, the reader may be referred to Annex B for details; however, include the information essential to a clear understanding of the magnitude of the hostile threat. When preparing a CINCís Strategic Concept, include all information essential to a clear understanding of the magnitude of the hostile threat.

e. ( ) Friendly Forces

(1) ( ) Describe the operations of unassigned forces, other than those assigned the task of supporting this operation, that could have a direct significant influence on the operations envisaged in this plan.

(2) ( ) List the specific tasks of friendly forces, commands, or Government agencies that would directly support OPORD execution (e.g., USCINCTRANS, CINCSAC, DIA).

f. ( ) Assumptions. List the necessary assumptions, including common assumptions contained in the JSCP or other task-assigning document, on which the plan is based (i.e., those contingent conditions the absence of which will have a significant impact on this plan or supporting plans). State expected conditions over which the commander has no control. Include assumptions that are directly relevant to the development of this plan and supporting plans and assumptions that express conditions that, should they not occur as expected, would invalidate the entire OPLAN/CONPLAN or its concept of operations. Include additional assumptions relevant to specific aspects of the operation in appropriate annexes. Specify the degree of mobilization assumed (e.g., full, partial, or none) and applicability of the Presidential 200,000 Selected Reserve callup authority.

g. ( ) Legal Considerations. List significant legal considerations on which the plan is based.

2. ( ) Mission. State concisely the task and purpose to be accomplished on execution. This statement should answer the following questions: who, what, when, where, why, and sometimes how. State the mission of the commander originating the plan (e.g., the mission may be the task assigned by the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, or it may be deduced from the Commanderís Estimate based on a task assigned by the Chairman). If the plan being prepared is a supporting plan, indicate the plan that it supports and include, when applicable, plans prepared by commanders of allied forces.

3. ( ) Execution

a. ( ) Concept of Operations. For most OPLANs, CONPLANs, and the CINCís Strategic Concept, include the entire concept of operations in this section. However, some OPLANs necessarily encompass alternative COAs for accomplishing the mission, and others require considerable detail to convey adequate guidance for the development of supporting plans. Accordingly, the entire concept may be placed in Annex C.

(1) ( ) General. Base the concept of operations on the Commanderís Estimate of the Situation. The estimate states how the commander intends to accomplish his mission, including the forces involved; the time-phasing of operations; the general nature and purpose of operations to be conducted; and the interrelated or cross-Service support, coordination, and cooperation necessary to successful execution. The concept of operations should be sufficiently developed to include an estimate of the level and duration of conflict to give supporting and subordinate commanders a basis for preparing adequate supporting plans. A graphic timeline may be used to assist in describing the various options or phases covered in the concept, including items such as warning and response times, major deployments, and employment phases. The concept should show how the initiative will be gained, security against enemy actions will be maintained, and superiority and surprise will be achieved. Requirements to maintain essential secrecy and to use theater or tactical military deception initiatives during the planning and preparatory phases, during movement to objective areas, and after operations are over should be briefly outlined. In the Basic Plan, reference should be made to Annex A for detailed force requirements. Alternatively, if commanders are planning for sustained armed conflict in their theater, the concept of operations should outline land, air, maritime, and unconventional warfare, psychological operations campaigns, and broad concepts for their mutually supporting conduct. Acknowledging that details of campaigns cannot be determined before armed conflict, sufficient detail should be included to guide force structure, organization, and development, and the planning and conduct of preconflict operations.

(2) ( ) OPLAN Structure. For plans covering situations that could involve armed conflict, the concept of operations will include a separate description for each stage of deterrence and warfighting as depicted in the JSCP.

(3) ( ) Employment. Describe the concept of how the forces are employed in each of the stages, options, and phases contained in OPLAN structure listed above. The concept should clearly outline plans for the use of nuclear weapons and chemical munitions or agents, if any. Plans to conduct supporting operations (e.g., EW, PSYOP, SOW, SAR, deception, and reconnaissance) will be indicated in this section for the CINCís Strategic Concept or by reference to appropriate appendixes of Annex C for the Basic Plan. When a nuclear or deception appendix is not prepared for Annex C, a statement to that effect will be made in this paragraph. A graphic timeline may be used to assist in describing the various options and phases covered.

(4) ( ) Deployment. Summarize the requirements to deploy forces from their normal peacetime locations to the area of operations. Such deployments may include those to be carried out within the command area, as well as deployments of augmentation forces. Particular attention should be given to expected deployments that may be required in order to implement and support the plan when directed. Consideration should also be given to the deployment of rapid reaction forces as a partial implementation of the plan and to deception measures required to provide security, mislead the enemy, and achieve surprise. A graphic timeline may be used to assist in describing the various options and phases covered.

b. ( ) Tasks. List the tasks assigned to each element of the supported and supporting commands in separate numbered sub-subparagraphs. Each task should be a concise statement of a mission to be performed either in future planning for the operation or on execution of the OPORD. The task assignment should encompass all key actions that subordinate and supporting elements must perform in order to fulfill the concept of operations, including theater and tactical military deceptions. However, do not link the actions to deception. If the actions cannot stand alone without exposing the deception, they must be published only in the deception appendix (C-7) to the plan in order to receive special handling. When the plan requires the establishment of a subordinate joint force, tasks are assigned to the component commanders, supporting commanders, and subordinate joint force commanders, as appropriate. The support that each component is expected to give another is stated.

c. ( ) Coordinating Instructions. List the instructions applicable to the entire command or two or more elements of the command that are necessary for proper coordination of the operation but are not appropriate for inclusion in a particular annex. Coordinating instructions establish, in particular, the conditions for execution. Terms pertaining to the timing of execution and deployments should be explained, as should other operational terms that appear in the plan but are not defined in the Joint Staff publications.

4. ( ) Administration and Logistics

a. ( ) Concept of Support. In preparing the Basic Plan, most guidance on Service support is normally contained in a series of detailed annexes listed in the subsequent subparagraphs. For a general understanding of the requirements for logistics support, personnel policies, and administrative plans, this subparagraph should include broad guidance as to how such support is to be furnished. Additional subparagraphs refer to the annexes that contain detailed guidance on each major aspect of support. When preparing the CINCís Strategic Concept, this subparagraph will state the same broad guidance as to how such support is to be furnished and, instead of referring to specific annexes in the subsequent subparagraphs, will contain additional summary-level guidance.

b. ( ) Logistics. In preparing a Basic Plan, refer to Annex D. When preparing the CINCís Strategic Concept, state the policies, guidance, and procedures to support all options for operations contained in the CINCís Strategic Concept. Logistics phases will be concurrent with operational phases. This subparagraph should cover sustainment priorities and resources; base development and other civil engineering requirements; host-nation support; and inter-Service responsibilities. The priority and movement of major logistics items should be identified for each option and phase of the concept. Strategic and theater ports for resupply should be identified. Transportation policies, guidance, and procedures for all options should be outlined. Logistics and transportation assumptions should be identified and included with other plan assumptions in subparagraph l.f. Identify detailed planning requirements and subordinate task assignments.

c. ( ) Personnel. In preparing a Basic Plan, refer to Annex E. When preparing the CINCís Strategic Concept, state the policies, guidance, and procedures to support all options contained in the CINCís Strategic Concept. Identify detailed planning requirements and subordinate task assignments. Assign tasks for establishing and operating joint personnel facilities and making provisions for staffing them. Discuss the administrative management of participating personnel, the reconstitution of forces, command replacement policies, and required staff augmentation to command headquarters.

d. ( ) Public Affairs. In preparing the Basic Plan refer to Annex F.

e. ( ) Civil Affairs. In preparing the Basic Plan refer to Annex G.

f. ( ) Environmental Services. In preparing the Basic Plan refer to Annex H.

g. ( ) Mapping, Charting, and Geodesy. In preparing the Basic Plan refer to Annex M.

h. ( ) Medical Services. In preparing the Basic Plan, refer to Annex Q. When preparing the CINCís Strategic Concept, outline the policies and guidance for medical care and support. Identify planning requirements and subordinate task assignments for hospitalization and evacuation. Describe critical medical supplies and resources. Assign tasks for establishing joint medical authorities and provisions for staffing them. Medical assumptions should be identified and included in subparagraph 1f, Assumptions. Wartime host-nation support agreements or provisions to support should be referenced in Annex P.

5. ( ) Command and Control

a. ( ) Command Relationships. In preparing a Basic Plan refer to Annex J. When preparing the CINCís Strategic Concept, state the organizational structure expected to exist during plan implementation. Indicate any changes to major command and control organizations and the time of the expected shift. Identify all Command Arrangement Agreements (CAAs) and Memorandums of Understanding (MOUs) used and those that require development.

b. ( ) Command Posts. List the designations and locations of each major headquarters involved in execution. When headquarters are to be deployed or the OPLAN provides for the relocation of headquarters to an alternate command post, indicate the location and time of opening and closing of each headquarters.

c. ( ) Succession to Command. Designate in order of succession the commanders responsible for assuming command of the operation in specific applicable circumstances.

d. ( ) Command, Control, and Communications Systems. State generally the scope of C3 systems and procedures required to support the operation. Highlight any C3 systems or procedures requiring special emphasis. When preparing a Basic Plan, refer the reader to Annex K for details.



Commander in Chief

Annexes: (For a Basic Plan, list only those actually published.) Listing not required when preparing CINCís Strategic Concept.
























Director, J-5