This chapter describes the principles and fundamentals for the employment of the air defense combat function, and the integration of AD capabilities into combined arms operations.

To achieve decisive victory, the Army must have the capability to deploy overwhelming combat power on the battlefield to defeat enemies quickly with minimum casualties. Successful air and missile defense operations are key to generating and sustaining combat power in force-projection operations. ADA will be challenged to provide protection of committed forces and assets throughout the theaters of operations and in the US.

To counter the spectrum of aerial threats, current doctrinal initiatives are built on the premise that a seamless defense must be the overall goal of the air and missile defense efforts. Air threats confronting US forces today and in the future are divided into those best addressed by manned aircraft and those best countered by surface-based systems. As such, air- and surface-based air defenses seek efficiency by avoiding duplication.

The Army requires ADA to counter ballistic and cruise missiles, UAVs, satellites, and helicopters, and to defeat any fixed-wing aircraft that avoid destruction by joint and multinational fighter aircraft. Synergy in the joint arena results from sound doctrine, proper training, and a common understanding of joint force relationships and procedures.


Combatant commanders seek the synergy inherent in joint operations by synchronizing the complementary warfighting capabilities of all the components and supporting commands into a unified effort. Participation in joint training exercises and joint doctrine development is a prerequisite to joint capability. Commanders must train leaders and units to operate as part of the joint team. Liaison is a vital part of this cohesiveness.

Forward-presence ADA forces support collective security arrangements and operate as part of multinational formations. Additionally, ADA units enhance relationships with regional partners through combined exercises, continual contacts, and liaison.

ADA forces must be prepared to conduct a number of operations that integrate warfighting and operations other than war. Robust liaison will facilitate understanding, coordination, and mission accomplishment.


The air defense capabilities of the US Army are best realized through the integration with its many combat functions and tactical units. Army air defense works in concert with joint and multinational air defense forces.


ADA conducts operations as a total force of Active and Reserve Components and civilians. ADA brigades are task-organized with a mix of active and reserve component battalions. Some ADA battalions have an active component and a reserve component roundout. ADA coordinates and integrates with joint and multinational air defense forces.


ADA has a wide mix of forces available to accomplish the mission. In fact, an air defense employment principle supports a mix of capabilities. ADA units can be long or short range, high or low altitude, and mobile or semimobile. Individual systems may have widely varying capabilities against different threat classes. The commander tailors the force to defeat the enemy and protect the force. The commander must also integrate the efforts of combat support and combat service support forces.


The components of combat power can be joined in a limitless array of combinations. These combinations change over time and may be different in deep, close, and rear operations. Balance and a wide choice of employment options are key to success. Denial of enemy RISTA activities is essential to protect friendly forces and assets, and to maintain surprise and the freedom to maneuver.


Just as the military prefers to fight as a joint team, the Army prefers to fight as a combined arms team. ADA is part of the simultaneous application of combat, combat support, and combat service support in every operation. These arms and services are integrated horizontally at each command level, normally battalion through corps, and vertically between command echelons. Combined arms teams strive to conduct fully integrated operations in the dimensions of time, space, purpose, and resources. Combined arms forces operate over increasingly large areas of the battlefield with less force density than in the past. Modern combined arms warfare puts added stress on maintaining dispersed and noncontiguous formations. The application of combined arms is complex and demanding. It requires detailed planning and violent execution by highly trained soldiers and units which have been thoroughly rehearsed.


Advances in electronics, communications, automation, surveillance, precision-guided weapons, and the exploitation of space-based capabilities have increased the lethality, range, accuracy, and reliability of ADA weapons. ADA can best use technology in future conflicts when it is integrated with doctrine.


The levels of war help commanders visualize a logical flow of operations, allocate resources, and assign tasks. Each level is defined by the outcome intended, not by the level of command or size of the unit. The levels of war apply to war and operations other than war.


Strategy involves the art and science of employing armed forces with other instruments of national power to secure strategic goals. At the strategic level of war, the US, acting alone or as a member of a group of nations, uses national interests to determine a strategy to ensure an effective, responsive national power-projection capability. The National Command Authority and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff translate strategy into military policy and requirements. These are the starting points for developing theater campaign plans.

Theater commanders participate in national, alliance, and coalition discussions as the theater military experts. They design the theater campaign plan so that it relates to both national strategies and operational activities. The theater campaign plan sets the desired end state and theater-strategic goals and is the basis for operational-level planning. Combatant and subordinate commanders usually plan and execute campaigns. Combatant commanders have strategic intents, concepts, and objectives.

National missile defense is inherently a strategic operation. Satellite defense, depending on the expected outcome, may also be a strategic operation. Defense against air and missile attacks which originate outside the CINC's battle space may be theater-strategic operations.

Defense of theater-strategic forces and geopolitical assets may also fall into the strategic level of war. Many operations other than war are strategic-level. Since casualties may be a critical vulnerability that could impact on national resolve, ADA units are just as critical then as they are during war.

EAC air defense commands may participate in strategic or theater-strategic planning and execution. Depending on the nature of the operation, corps ADA brigades and divisional battalions may also become involved in strategic or theater-strategic planning and execution.


The focus at the operational level is on conducting joint or multinational operations--the employment of military forces to attain theater-strategic objectives in a theater of war and operational objectives in a theater of operations. This is achieved through the design, organization, and execution of subordinate operations and major operations. The operational level is the vital link between national and theater-strategic aims and the tactical employment of forces. Service component or subordinate joint commanders have operational intents, concepts, and objectives. No specific level of command is solely concerned with operational art. In its simplest form, operational art determines when, where, and for what purposes major forces will fight. It governs the deployment, commitment, withdrawal of forces, and sequencing of successive battles and major operations. Air and missile defense of military forces in a theater of war or operations is an operational-level task.

EAC and corps ADA brigades usually plan and execute at the operational level of war. In some situations, ADA battalion are employed to protect operational forces and assets.


The tactical level of war is concerned with the execution of battles and engagements. Activities at the tactical level focus on the ordered arrangement and maneuver of combat elements in relation to each other and the enemy. Battles and engagements are planned and executed to accomplish military objectives. Tactics is battlefield problem-solving--usually rapid and dynamic in nature. ADA brigades and battalions conduct operations at the tactical level.


Planning is a continuous process that begins with the assignment of guidance and continues until the mission is accomplished. Planning and fighting are often conducted concurrently. Planning is done as thoroughly as time allows. Successful planning requires an appreciation of the simultaneous nature of operations, an awareness of the total mission, anticipation of future events, and application of the battlefield framework.


More than one campaign can occur concurrently within the same theater. Operations go on simultaneously throughout the commander's battle space. A wide variety of combat and noncombat operations requires synchronization to achieve designated objectives. A single unifying concept of operations synchronizes actions taken at each level of war against the enemy. The intent is to destroy or disrupt the enemy's key capabilities and functions and exploit the resulting advantage before the enemy can react. Commanders at all levels require vision to fight simultaneously and to respond to contingency requirements.


From receipt of the mission to its accomplishment, commanders at all levels consider everything that may affect their operation. Awareness is thinking beyond the current moment and throughout the dimensions of the commander's battle space. By having a total mission awareness, the commander thinks about immediate tasks to accomplish and about activities before and after the immediate tasks.


Deterring aggression and, if need be, winning wars are the team's common goals. Americans culturally respond to and respect teamwork as an important value. An effective fighting force requires teamwork which is based on individual trust and unit cohesion. In many cases of force-projection operations, deploying units will find themselves assigned to an organization that has not previously trained or worked with them. Additionally, many Army units may be operating in a joint, multinational, or interagency environment for the first time. Forging a team is one of the early challenges facing commanders. Team-building techniques should include commanders' meetings, leader reconnaissance, and liaison team exchanges.


Army planning requires the complete definition of the mission, expression of the commander's intent, completion of commander and staff estimates, and development of a concept of operations. These form the basis for a plan or order and set the conditions for decisive victory. The initial plan establishes the commander's intent, concept of operations, and tasks for subordinate units. It allows the greatest possible latitude for subordinate leaders. It is flexible enough to permit leaders to seize opportunities consistent with the commander's intent. The plan sets the stage for future operations. Mission orders which specify what the subordinate commands are to do without directing how they must do it are often the best.


Army commanders determine the best sequence of operations to achieve a tempo which will reach the desired objective. Commanders consider a variety of factors which affect sequencing decisions. Force-projection operations are complicated by a rapidly changing enemy situation. The sequence that commanders choose, therefore, should not rule out future options but should be flexible enough to accommodate change.


The sequence of major operations or battles relates directly to the commander's decision on phasing. A phase represents a period during which a number of forces are involved in similar activities. A transition to another phase indicates a shift in emphasis. During planning, commanders establish conditions for moving into each phase. Actions by the enemy can also determine conditions for phases. Logistics is crucial to phasing. Operational planners must consider establishing logistics bases, lines of communications, priorities for services and support, and protection of logistics. Logistics, then, is key to sequencing the major operations of a campaign; and air defense is critical to protection of all logistics activities.

Branches and Sequels

No plan of operations survives intact after first contact with the enemy. The commander builds flexibility into the plan to preserve freedom of action under rapidly changing conditions. Branches and sequels directly relate to the concept of phasing. Their proper use can add flexibility to a campaign or operation plan.

Branches. Branches are contingency plans or options built into the basic plan for changing the disposition, orientation, or direction of movement, and for accepting or declining battle. They give commanders flexibility by anticipating enemy reactions that could alter the basic plan.

Sequels. Sequels are subsequent operations based on the possible outcomes of the current operation. Executing a sequel will normally mean beginning another phase of the campaign. This is a continuous process during an operation so that the commander always has options.


Deception operations are designed to mislead enemy decision makers by distorting, concealing, and falsifying friendly intentions, capabilities, and dispositions. The deception objective is the enemy commander. The goal is to mislead the opposing military commander, prompting the enemy to conduct activities that unwittingly serve friendly purposes.

Deception operations can be planned at all levels and must support the higher headquarters deception plan. In some cases, strategic and operational plans may include the employment of operational and tactical forces without their commanders being aware of the deception effort. Tactical deception may relate to smaller or more localized areas or forces having less to do with what is to be done, but deceiving the enemy as to exactly when, where, how, or who will accomplish the missions.

Many ADA units have unique and powerful signatures. Since ADA units are vital to force protection, they may be frequently deployed and employed in support of deception operations.


A rehearsal is the process of practicing a plan before actual execution. Rehearsing key combat actions allows participants to become familiar with the operation and to visualize the plan. Rehearsals assist units in orienting themselves to their environment and to other units during execution. Rehearsals provide an opportunity for subordinate leaders to analyze and understand the plan. Rehearsals also provide a forum to "proof" the plan to validate its feasibility, logic, and adequacy of its battle command measures. While rehearsals with combat units usually occur at the tactical level, headquarters at the operational level can rehearse key aspects of a plan using command post exercises. Even if time does not permit a complete rehearsal with a full complement of troops and equipment, some form of rehearsal must take place with all key leaders.

ADA commanders and leaders must conduct some form of rehearsal with their units. They must also participate in the rehearsal of the supported units. Time management must be flexible to accomplish both tasks.


The use of weapons of mass destruction can have an enormous impact on the conduct of all operations. Not only does their sheer killing and destructive power redefine the tactical battlefield, but the strategic, operational, psychological, and political impacts of their use affect campaign designs. The effects of these weapons can cause large-scale shifts in tactical objectives, phases, and courses of action. Planning for the possibility of their use against friendly forces is critical to campaign design.

A swift end to the conflict will partially negate the opportunity to employ these weapons. Still, force protection is an imperative in this environment. Effective air and missile defense is crucial. Commanders implement defensive principles of avoidance, protection, and decontamination. Commanders also take offensive preventive measures such as raids, air attacks, and operations designed to locate and neutralize such weapons.

ADA units provide for the protection of the force and geopolitical assets from many forms of chemical or biological air or missile attack. Current capabilities against nuclear air or missile attack must be improved. ADA soldiers must be prepared to survive, fight, and win under conditions produced by weapons of mass destruction.


A battlefield framework helps commanders relate their forces to one another and to the enemy in time, space, resources, and purpose. This battlefield framework establishes an area of geopolitical and operational responsibility for the commander and provides a way to visualize how to employ forces against the enemy. To understand this framework is to understand the relationship among the area of operations (AO), battle space, and operations in depth. Proper relationships allow for simultaneous operations and massing of effects against the enemy.

US joint doctrine establishes a preferred framework where joint forces can apply combat power simultaneously throughout the land, sea, air, and space dimensions of the theater. Thus, US Army doctrine also prefers such a battlefield framework. Selecting choices to lay out that framework is the business of both tactical- and operational-level commanders and staffs.


The CINC achieves theater focus by structuring the theater through the application of operational art. Theater structure is a product of the CINC's strategic objective, the forces allocated for the theater, the strategy for employment, the factors of mission, terrain, troops, and time available (METT-T), and the presence of alliance or coalition structures.

In operations other than war, CINCs focus their efforts through the designation of an AO. If required, the AO may be further subdivided into a joint operations area (JOA), joint zone (JZ), or joint special operations area (JSOA).

Figure 4-1. Theater Structure Diagram

In war, the CINC achieves focus through the designation of a theater of war (see preceding diagram 4-1). Within that theater, single or multiple theaters of operation can be formed. Multiple theaters of operation are formed when there are multiple major threats. A JSOA can also be designated. The JSOA within the theater of war can overlap into the theater of operations.

A theater of war does not normally encompass the theater commander's entire area of responsibility (AOR). The theater commander may thus conduct combat operations within a theater of war and react to a separate contingency in a theater of operations or JSOA elsewhere in his AOR. Finally, the theater commander would continue normal peacetime activities throughout the remainder of the AOR. Nation assistance and similar activities do not cease when higher levels of violence begin. The theater environment is often one of simultaneous activities across the full range of military operations.

The theater commander could also establish a combat zone (CZ) and communications zone (COMMZ). The CZ is an area required by combat forces to conduct operations. It normally extends forward from the corps rear boundary. The COMMZ constitutes the rear portion of a theater of operations, reaching back to the CONUS base or perhaps to another combatant commander's AOR. The COMMZ contains those theater organizations, lines of communications (LOCs), and other agencies required to support forces in the field. The COMMZ includes air and seaports that support the flow of forces into the theater. It is usually contiguous to the CZ but may be separate--connected only by thin LOCs.


A theater of war will normally contain more than one theater of operations, which can extend from friendly ports and logistics areas to distant sources of enemy support. Within a theater of operations, the JFC may define the lateral, rear, and forward boundaries of a geographical area of operations, including the airspace above. Subordinate commanders may also define smaller AOs as the conditions of METT-T dictate. Within the AO, the supported commander has the authority to control and synchronize the timing, priority, and effects of joint force actions consistent with the higher commander's intent and concept.

The AO must be appropriate in size and design so that the commander can accomplish the mission and protect the force. It should allow for employment of all systems to the full extent of their capabilities.

If a land component commander is designated, an AO may be assigned. This determines what activities occur within the AO and how they contribute to mission accomplishment. The commander allocates parts of this area to subordinate commanders, usually using zones or sectors. Commanders at all levels have the full range of measures described in FMs 101-5 and 101-5-1 to help them control operations within their AO. Generally, however, they should use the minimum measures necessary for effective control of combat and sustaining activities.

ADA units are typically assigned an area of operations also. This area is actually three-dimensional as it encompasses the airspace above. The AO may be called a missile, joint, or low-altitude air defense engagement zone. It may not exactly correspond to the supported unit AO.


The area of interest is the area of concern to the commander, including the area of operations and his battle space, areas adjacent thereto, and extending into enemy territory to the objectives of current or planned operations. This area also includes areas occupied by enemy forces which could jeopardize the accomplishment of the mission. The area of interest for ADA commanders includes all areas from which the enemy could launch aircraft or missiles against the protected force. The area of interest overlaps those of adjacent and higher units, to include areas to the rear of the AO. The area of interest helps to focus the information requirements of commanders from battalion to echelons above corps.


Battle space is an intellectual tool that the commander uses to first see the battlefield, then to dominate it. Within a given battle space, commanders must understand the effects of geography and terrain, appropriately apply use of organic capabilities, and integrate joint and multinational assets that can be brought to bear against the enemy. The commander is aware of the battle space vertical and horizontal considerations of ADA systems' performance and the implications this has on both engagement and force operations.

Commanders seek to dominate the enemy in a given battle space. Battle space is a physical volume that expands or contracts in relation to the ability to acquire and engage the enemy. It includes the breadth, depth, and height in which the commander positions and moves assets over time. Battle space is not assigned by a higher commander and extends beyond the commander's AO. It is based on the notion that commanders expand their thinking to develop a vision for dominating the enemy and protecting the force before any mental constraints are emplaced, such as boundaries. This gives them complete freedom of thought to envision operations according to existing and projected factors of METT-T.

Battle space includes the combat power of all friendly forces that can be brought to bear on the enemy, including joint and multinational forces. It contains the physical, three-dimensional view of the battlefield, which can later be depicted with operational graphics. Battle space also includes the operational dimensions of combat, including time, tempo, depth, and synchronization.

At the lower tactical levels, battle space is determined by the range of direct and indirect fire systems and the terrain on which they are applied. The higher the echelon, the greater the complexity and number of variations of battle space. An ADA brigade commander envisions the multinational battle space of ADA battalions' short- and long-range weapons, airborne and ground sensor systems, and other assets.

Unity of effort is essential to operations within a given battle space. Ownership of assets is less important than application of their effects toward an intended purpose. In that way, battle space can overlap, shared by two adjacent commanders who perceive ways to employ their respective assets to mutual advantage.

Battle space must be used to every possible advantage. It is best to see, target, and hit the enemy at a distance from which he cannot hit back. Conversely, if the enemy has distinct advantages at long range, the counter may be to move in closer to deter the enemy from using firepower that may endanger its own forces.

Understanding battle space allows commanders to keep options open, protect and sustain forces, synchronize combat power, and keep the enemy off balance. As the commander considers the mission, he can visualize how the battle space should look at different times as the unit moves against the enemy. This helps to determine how to task-organize and position units during different phases.

Effective commanders have always known how to use battle space. The tempo of operations today has accelerated to the point that all commanders must learn to dominate their battle space. That space has expanded dramatically as have events and combat systems that can impact on it. The challenges to control battle space have increased as have the penalties for failing to know what is where within that space and how those resources can be respectively protected, denied, damaged, or destroyed. ADA leaders will be challenged to constantly remind supported commanders of the requirement to dominate the aerial dimension of battle space.

Commanders use the concept of battle space to help determine how the terrain and all available combat power can be used to dominate the enemy and protect the force. Eventually, this vision becomes the battlefield framework from which their intent and concept of operation are derived. Understanding battle space allows commanders to synchronize combat power against the enemy and keep the enemy from extending its battle space to its greatest range. As commanders consider their mission, they visualize how they can make best use of their battle space. This helps them determine how they might task-organize and position their units. By understanding how to visualize operations in depth, commanders can synchronize operations to disrupt the enemy in depth, to throw it off balance, to attack its functions, and to set the conditions for decisive victory.


Commanders visualize their battle space to set the relationship of friendly forces to one another and to the enemy in time, space, resources, and purpose. Once commanders decide the purpose and relationship of battlefield activities, they determine how to arrange them within the breadth, depth, and space of the battlefield to meet their considerations of METT-T. This, in turn, helps them relate their activities to those of the enemy over time.

Three closely related sets of activities characterize operations within an AO--deep, close, and rear operations. Army commanders fight deep, close, and rear actions simultaneously in a manner that appears to the enemy as one continuous operation. They seek to attack the enemy simultaneously throughout the depth of the battlefield and mass both effects and forces when and where necessary to accomplish the mission.

Consistent with the JFC's plan, assets of other members of the joint team are used to accomplish these attacks as well as operate outside tactical depths to achieve simultaneous attacks throughout the theater. Fighting within this framework thus requires constant synchronization. The lines between these actions may be transparent and will often shift. Sometimes time and space are separated between these elements. Commanders arrange deep, close, and rear operations consistent with orders they have received and in a way that accomplishes the mission at least cost.

Reaching the decisive point quickly is the aim. The factors of METT-T determine the relationship between assets committed to close, deep, and rear operations. Commanders must see the entire AO and react promptly to developments anywhere within it.

Understanding time-space relationships and systems capabilities is vital to minimize reaction times and contributes directly to maintaining the momentum of operations and the initiative. It is important to know not only the location of the enemy but also how fast friendly and enemy commanders can react to each other's initiatives.

Synchronization of deep, close, and rear operations is a complex undertaking. It requires a clear understanding of the commander's intent. Effective operations in depth require dynamic, anticipatory responses to synchronize a variety of assets, including space-based systems. The ultimate success in synchronizing deep, close, and rear operations determines the outcome of battles, major operations, and campaigns.

Deep Operations

Deep operations are those directed against enemy forces and functions beyond the close battle. They are executed at all levels with fires, maneuver, and leadership. Protection provided by air defense is embedded in the plan. Deep operations affect the enemy through either attack or threat of attack. They expand the battlefield in space and time to the full extent of friendly capabilities. Effective deep operations facilitate overall mission success and enhance protection of the force.

The deep battle is designed to shape the battlefield by nullifying the enemy's firepower, disrupting command and control, destroying supplies, and breaking morale. A well-orchestrated deep battle may help cause the enemy to be defeated outright or may prevent it from achieving intended objectives. ADA leaders are active proponents in nominating counterair and TMD targets for attack by Army or joint assets.

While the enemy is best defeated by fighting him deep, it may be necessary to fight close and deep simultaneously. In doing so, Army forces use deep operations to set the conditions for decisive future operations. Attack of enemy formations at depth delays, diverts, or reduces enemy combat capabilities and hastens enemy defeat. These operations enable friendly forces to choose the time, place, and method to fight the close battle.

While firepower plays an essential role in the conduct of deep operations, the integrated application of firepower and maneuver makes the Army's deep attack capability effective. Airborne and air assault forces, attack aviation, and high-speed armor forces provide the land component and joint force commanders the capability to thrust deep into the battlefield to seize facilities and destroy key enemy functions that would be too expensive or risky to attack by other means.

Maneuver at depth will often require dedicated air defense protection. Successful deep maneuver requires the synchronization of supporting assets, including systems organic to Army echelons and those of other services or multinational forces.

Close Operations

Forces in immediate contact with the enemy are fighting close operations. Close operations are usually the corps and division current battles. At the tactical level, they include the engagements fought by brigades and battalions. Commanders should dictate when and where to fight decisive close battles. Only ground forces can dominate the terrain through close operations. Close battle occurs where, when, and against whom commanders choose to commit assault formations. Normally, it takes close operations on land to gain decisive and lasting battlefield effects.

The concept of close operations is sufficiently elastic to adjust to the conditions of a wide range of combat situations. Commanders must concentrate forces only when necessary for decisive effects, preferring to concentrate effects instead. Deciding between concentration of forces or massing of effects is a function of METT-T. Friendly forces are most likely to be attacked by rotary-wing aircraft during close operations. Air defense of close operations focuses on this threat while retaining the tactical flexibility to protect the force from attack by all the others.

Rear Operations

Rear operations assist in providing freedom of action and continuity of operations, logistics, and battle command. Their primary purposes are to sustain the current close and deep fights and to posture the force for future operations. At the operational level, rear operations support current operations and posture the force for the next phase of the major operation or campaign. At the tactical level, they enhance the commander's ability to influence the tempo of combat, helping him take advantage of any opportunity without delay. At either level, rear areas may not be contiguous with forward areas, complicating both protection for rear area forces and sustainment of forces fighting close operations.

Rear operations can be the targets of the enemy's deep attack. To preclude diverting assets needed for close operations, commanders train and equip units involved in rear operations to protect themselves against all but the most serious threats. Active air defense should be provided by dedicated ADA units. By providing defense in depth, the air, missile, and surveillance threats can be defeated or reduced in strength prior to their arrival in the rear. All units must be able to take self-defense measures (both active and passive).


Battlefield success requires a combined arms effort that is well integrated into joint and multinational operations. Weapons of increased complexity and lethality characterize the battlefield. The air battle is an integral part of the joint battle, and the US Army contributes to the air battle through air defense operations.

Army doctrine describes the structure of modern warfare and recognizes its inherent three-dimensional nature. Synchronizing ground operations with air operations is the bedrock on which this doctrine is based.


The principal task of theater commanders and their subordinates is to plan and execute campaigns. The goal of campaigns is to achieve strategic military objectives through the concentration of superior strength against enemy vulnerabilities at the decisive time and place. Participating services work in concert toward common goals and synchronize their efforts.

The Campaign Plan

The theater campaign plan originates with broad, strategic guidance from the National Command Authority, Joint Chiefs of Staff, or coalition command authority. Based on this guidance, the JFC and staff complete an estimate of the situation, decide upon a course of action, and direct the preparation of the theater campaign plan.

The campaign plan reflects the JFC's translation of national and alliance or coalition strategies into a theater military strategy. The campaign plan expresses operational military objectives which support the theater strategy and defines those objectives in terms of desired results of combat operations. The campaign plan also expresses the commander's mission priorities and decisions regarding apportionment of the resources of component air, land, and sea forces. Through the theater campaign plan, the JFC states the intent and provides a blueprint for conducting the early phases of the campaign, a general concept for follow-on campaign operations, and campaign sustainment guidance.

The component commanders assist in preparing the theater campaign plan, and they develop mutually supporting and synchronized air, land, and sea operations plans. Their plans implement the theater commander's guidance as it affects the employment of their respective forces. The JFC ensures the supporting plans embody the theater campaign objectives and provide for maximum combat power at the right place and time. Synchronization and unity of effort are the principal benefits of the JFC's review and integration of the supporting operations plans into the theater plan.

Roles of the Components in the Campaign

The US Army, Air Force, Navy, and Marine Corps, as well as allied and coalition forces, support the theater campaign through interlocking missions and combat functions. The joint and multinational air forces contribute to the air operations. Through their participation in air interdiction, counterair, and close air support, the joint air forces directly support the theater commander's land operations. Due to the land, sea, and air capabilities of the Navy and Marine Corps, the JFC integrates them into all aspects of the theater campaign plan.

The Army's role in the theater campaign is also multidimensional and requires combined arms. The Army's combat functions directly support land operations. These systems also support and are integral to air operations. For example, the air defense combat function, for which ADA is both the proponent and principal contributor, is the Army's primary means to integrate Army contributions to joint counterair and theater missile defense operations. The Campaign Planning Linkages illustration 4-2 depicts an example of integrated Army and Air Force support required to conduct the theater campaign.


Army doctrine stresses the importance of the relationship between air and ground operations. The airspace of a theater is as important a dimension of ground operations as the terrain itself. To ensure maximum benefit from air operations, the theater commander may designate a joint force air component commander. The JFACC is responsible for air operations planning, allocation, direction, and execution, and for control of air operations.

Figure 4-2. Campaign Planning Linkages

Joint Air Operations

Normally, the forces under the JFACC 's control perform the air operations combat missions concurrently. The missions are mutually supporting and include, but are not limited to, air interdiction (AI), close air support (CAS), counterair (CA), strategic attack, tactical surveillance and reconnaissance, tactical airlift, and support of maritime operations. Air operations influence all other combat operations. Air operations may be independent of land and sea activities and can achieve certain independent results. However, they normally combine with other combat operations to produce interrelated results which support the theater commander's objectives. Each element of the air operation is important to the successful completion of the theater campaign; but strategic attack, AI, CAS, and counterair components are the primary contributors to land operations. TMD attack operations do not ordinarily receive their own air apportionment category. Rather, TMD attack operations are a part of strategic attack and air interdiction.

Counterair and Theater Missile Defense Operations

Airspace provides an added dimension to maneuver. Forces use the air environment for maneuver, delivery of fires, surveillance, reconnaissance, electronic warfare, battle command, and transportation. The commander who best exploits the full potential of airspace will more effectively exercise freedom to maneuver forces at the right place and time. Air superiority enables commanders to better optimize their tactical flexibility and their freedom to execute attacks to neutralize or destroy an enemy's potential to wage war. Counterair and theater missile defense operations protect friendly forces, enable friendly forces to use airspace, and deny use of airspace to the enemy. Thus, counterair and theater missile defense operations are an integral part of planning, fighting, and winning the campaign.

Operational Elements of Counterair and Theater Defense

Chapter 3 introduced the three operational elements of counterair operations. They are OCA, DCA, and SEAD. Chapter 3 also introduced the four operational elements of theater missile defense. Known as the four pillars of TMD, they are active defense, passive defense, attack operations, and C4I.

General Requirements of Counterair and Defense Operations

Operations require coordination of each service's capabilities. A fully coordinated battle command system facilitates interservice synchronization of activities. The proper mix and synchronization of surface-based and aerial platforms provide the commander with flexible and agile forces which complement each other and deny the enemy a preferred attack option. Similarly, flexible offensive forces must simultaneously engage the enemy by performing attack operations, OCA, AI, SEAD, and CAS to degrade the enemy's capability to bring combat power to bear and to exploit every possible enemy weakness.


The campaign is a joint and multinational series of battles. The services and national forces coordinate and synchronize their efforts to bring combat operations to a successful conclusion. The Army, through the air defense combat function, participates in joint counterair and theater missile defense operations. Moreover, the Army is a major contributor, providing a wide spectrum of air and missile defense-capable systems and forces. The theater objectives of Army air defense are to preserve combat power, to gain the initiative, and to support offensive operations (see the following illustration).


Preserve combat power

Gain initiative

Support offensive operations


At the operational and tactical levels of war, freedom to maneuver is crucial to achieving superior combat power. Freedom to maneuver facilitates the ability of land and air forces to shape the battlefield, achieve advantage, set the terms for combat and future operations, and exploit success. Freedom to maneuver is the catalyst that permits land, air, and sea forces to reach their full destructive potential. Combined with the synergistic effect of synchronized surface and air operations, freedom to maneuver ultimately leads to success on the battlefield.

The ability of any unit at any echelon to maneuver freely on the battlefield centers around reliable logistical support and effective battle command. Friendly forces must anticipate enemy efforts to deny or disrupt freedom to maneuver. Enemy air power represents the most flexible, far-reaching, and destructive threat to friendly operations.

To retain the freedom to maneuver and to protect critical assets, the joint and multinational forces must not only prevent attacks but also destroy the enemy's ability to attack. The rapid destruction of the enemy's air capability enhances friendly force flexibility and contributes to early victory. Therefore, the counterair and theater missile defense forces must kill enemy air platforms and missiles at the earliest opportunity, consistent with the force's mission. The results are protection of the force from the immediate air threat and reduction of the air and missile threat to future operations.

To achieve success, all members of the combined arms team must contribute to air defense. ADA is the only Army force dedicated to execute air defense operations. Other members of the combined arms team, supported by an accurate and timely air and missile early warning and intelligence capability, can support the air defense effort.

Field artillery units can attack TBM launch sites, critical air operation support facilities, and enemy ground-based air defenses. Army aviation, with air combat capabilities, can engage enemy aircraft in self-defense or when the ground force commander determines the need to use aviation in an air defense role. Combined arms elements can also strike deep against air operations support facilities and enemy air defenses. Special operations forces can perform deep offensive and reconnaissance operations to cripple and disrupt missile and air operation facilities. Other combined arms units can use organic weapons in self-defense against selected air targets. Smoke units can conceal large areas or restrict contour flight approaches.

All combat, combat support, and combat service support branches participate in the air defense mission directly or indirectly. Combat service support units provide the personnel and material to carry out the mission. Engineer units provide terrain analysis, fortification construction, and assistance in rapid displacement and emplacement of ADA units.

The US Army focuses on the counterair and theater missile defense missions from a different perspective than other services. Within the Army, each echelon of command views the focus of these missions differently. At echelons above corps, the focus tends toward theater-level counterair and TMD objectives. At successively lower levels of command, the focus shifts increasingly toward providing freedom to maneuver by protecting the force. These perspectives relate directly to the different battlefield characteristics and requirements at each command level.

At the theater level, the commander must control the airspace to protect strategic critical forces and geopolitical assets, the loss of which would imperil the conduct of the campaign. Corps commanders exercise control over most of the ground forces in the theater. They also control forces capable of destroying enemy air power on the ground or in the air. Objectives of air defense at the corps are protecting the force, providing freedom to maneuver, controlling the air environment, and destroying enemy air and missile power on the ground and in flight.

Since the division commander is primarily concerned with tactical-level operations, the requirement for divisional air defense focuses on protecting the force. The division must be free to maneuver to shape the battlefield and destroy the enemy.


The contribution of Army assets, particularly ADA, to the joint counterair and theater missile defense mission is important to other air and ground operations. Army contributions directly influence the JFC's apportionment of the total air effort. The JFC determines the allocation of capabilities and forces, made available by components, necessary to support his goals. The JFC normally apportions the available capabilities and forces for each of the mission areas of strategic attack, interdiction, CAS, counterair, and maritime support by percent, priority of effort, or weight of effort.

Attack operations may be factored into OCA, but can be accomplished in other mission areas such as interdiction. Once air superiority has been established by joint forces and Army air defense, the JFC can reduce the apportionment of capabilities and forces to counterair. These assets can then be tasked in support of other air, naval, and ground operations. Therefore, the Army air defense contribution to the counterair and theater missile defense operation is a major factor in providing the ground force commanders greater combat air power to achieve their objectives.


Force-projection operations usually begin as a rapid response to a crisis somewhere in the world. Force-projection operations challenge ADA leaders. Early critical decisions are required at every level in war and operations other than war. ADA commanders and forces will routinely be required to plan and execute multiple concurrent activities.

Force projection is a complex process in which each action affects many others. ADA units should not expect to move smoothly from one stage to the next. Deployed forces and lines of communications require protection.

The intelligence community may only have general information about a contingency area. Host nation support may be unknown. Missions might change at any point. Despite the complexity of force-projection operations, ADA units are able to execute them successfully.


Credible, robust, lethal, and tailored forces must be introduced early in force-projection operations. Sufficient combat power to resolve a crisis on favorable terms must be deployed. These forces must be interoperable and flexible to take into account unforeseen circumstances. The early entry ADA force must possess the lethality to protect the force the moment it arrives in theater. Commanders cannot depend on having the time to build up lethal forces in a theater. A tailored ADA task force with enough assets and access to joint and multinational counterair, theater missile defense, and intelligence assets might even be able to deter the enemy from attacking critical functions such as battle command, logistics, and maneuver.


ADA commanders and units everywhere in the Army must expect to be alerted and deployed with little prior warning. This attitude enables ADA forces to mentally and physically prepare. If units have been assigned a region of focus, planning must begin long before alerting. Continuous force tracking (total asset visibility) and intelligence readiness are important elements of anticipation. Plans must be simple, deployment options redundant, and deployment flow sufficiently versatile to generate alternative options. Early deploying ADA forces must have the combat capability to protect lodgments from the moment of arrival since hostilities can begin at any time.


Force tailoring is the process of determining the right mix and sequence of units. Crisis response ADA forces on quick alert may have little time to tailor forces. Their force packages should include sufficient combat power to sustain them for the short term. Initial and follow-on ADA reinforcement forces can then be tailored to meet the specific concerns of the long-term mission. Commanders consider the factors of METT-T, strategic lift, pre-positioned assets, and host nation and joint or multinational support when they tailor forces.

Commanders might find they need to substitute one type of ADA unit for another or to add ADA units that have never trained together. This places a premium on early and continuous teamwork which builds the cohesion that is essential for mission success. ADA commanders must select a force composition appropriate for the mission, build the team, and plan for simultaneous deployment and rapid employment of the ADA force.


The intelligence combat function must provide timely, relevant, accurate, and predictive all-source intelligence on enemy capabilities and activities. As described in FM 34-1, the following principles are critical to IEW operations:

Intelligence must support the air defense commander during all phases of the decision-making process. During planning the commander at each level drives the intelligence effort. They initially drive intelligence through the identification of priority intelligence requirements (PIRs). Each commander must broker subordinate commanders' intelligence requirements. Then intelligence assets are tasked to meet those requirements.


Force-projection operations will tax ADA battle command. Two or more phases may be conducted concurrently. The deployment phase may result in the physical separation of units in space and time. The enemy may attack unexpectedly before deployment is complete. Simplicity and the ability to adapt and adjust are key considerations. Tactical ADA commanders must adapt to the nature of the deployment flow and prepare plans that rapidly build combat power, provide protection of the force, and facilitate future operations.

ADA commanders must have robust battle command means during force projection. They must accurately track friendly forces and forecast their arrival in theater. Space-based systems can greatly facilitate the commander's real-time knowledge of unit status and other key assets, as well as connecting into joint and multinational counterair and theater missile defenses. Establishing adequate communications networks will require innovation. Communications must be secure, reliable, timely, and compatible with the mix of supporting, supported, and adjacent forces and services. ADA units must rapidly establish communications with other organizations and services in the operation.


Successful ADA force projection requires tailorable, flexible, modular logistics. The nature of logistical projection depends on the factors of METT-T. Force projection may require the development of forward support bases, intermediate staging bases, and lodgments in theater. Contracted logistics may provide some initial support. Split-based logistical operations (part in theater and part in the US) reduce the burden on the deployment flow and preclude unnecessary stockage in theater. A split-based logistics concept relies on assured communications systems.


Demanding and relevant training focused on the ADA mission is important. Units build on home-station training by focusing on missions and conditions they expect to encounter during force-projection operations. Although training begins at home stations, ADA units continue to train to standard and to rehearse following arrival in theater and throughout the conduct of operations as time, the enemy, and other conditions permit. Lessons learned should be passed up the chain of command, from unit to unit, and from early deploying units to follow-on forces. Training continues after hostilities cease.


Force-projection operations will almost always involve operations with other nations. Measures taken to achieve unity of effort and mutual trust greatly facilitate operations. Commanders and soldiers should be sensitive to cultural differences that may impact on operations.

Allied or coalition counterair and missile defense requirements must be incorporated into the overall plan. Likewise, allied or coalition capabilities must be maximized during operations.


The impact of visual media on the conduct of ADA operations is substantially greater today than in any previous era. When hostilities begin, tactical ADA commanders are normally separated from the media's visual presentations, which are usually available at the theater and national levels. Providing early and continuous access to the press throughout force projection enhances operations and strengthens public support. However, misuse of the media can endanger units; provide the enemy vital targeting, combat damage, and friendly force deployment data; and weaken public support.


At all stages of force-projection operations, commanders at all levels must consider issues related to the end state and the transition to peace. At every level, analysis of the objectives for the operation should always include consideration of the anticipated consequences of the war to help smooth the transition from active combat to postconflict operations.


Force projection is the military's ability to respond quickly and decisively to global requirements. It is fundamental to Army doctrine. The eight stages of force-projection operations follow a general sequence, although these stages often overlap in time and space. Activities of one stage will often blend with another.

ADA commanders should assume no set arrangement of events. They should be prepared to deal with many concurrent activities. They should conceptualize a logical flow through the stages but be prepared to make adjustments. The stages include mobilization, predeployment activities, deployment, entry operations, operations, postconflict or postcrisis operations, redeployment, and demobilization. The following paragraphs discuss the potential stages of force-projection operations.


Mobilization is a process in which the armed forces augment the active component capability in preparation for war or other national emergencies. Mobilization includes activating all or part of the Reserve Components as well as assembling and organizing personnel, supplies, and materiel; and certifying the proficiency of individuals and units. The mobilization system includes five levels which can support the mobilization for specific, limited contingencies up to extended mobilization necessary to support large, protracted wars. The actual mobilization flow for a unit also includes five phases from planning to port of embarkation.

ADA commanders must be involved in the mobilization process because an extensive part of their task organization is from the Reserve Components. Some Patriot battalions have reserve component roundout batteries. All ADA units will receive individual augmentees to round out their strength. Details of the mobilization process are in FM 100-17.


Since all units are an integral part of the force-projection strategy, units' mission-essential task lists must reflect appropriate mobilization and deployment tasks. ADA unit training must emphasize all critical aspects of force projection.

Force tailoring is conducted based on the mission and resources available. The theater campaign plan will specify command, intelligence, logistics, and any multinational operations relationships, if known. The G2 or S2 must begin a detailed IPB as early as possible to support planning. Anticipatory logistics planning during this stage is key to successful execution of later stages. Operations security is critical during this stage. The combatant or joint force commander will establish the sequence in which Army units should deploy relative to the movement of forces of the other services. ADA commanders must prioritize lift requirements consistent with METT-T. ADA commanders use available time to complete training and certification as well as building new team cohesion. For forward presence forces, it also may be necessary to provide air defense force protection and counter-RISTA during this stage.


ADA units are trained, structured, and postured for rapid deployment. Deployment planning tools, described in FM 55-65, allow commanders to adapt to rapidly changing circumstances. Lift assets are limited, yet critical to the successful projection of the force. ADA commanders make every effort to integrate the capabilities of the host nation, joint and multinational forces, and forward presence forces with those of the deploying force. Commanders must balance the factors of METT-T against available lift assets to determine the composition of the initial response force. Each crisis will have unique demands, causing commanders to balance requirements against lift. In deployment, commanders must maintain versatility and agility in force mix, combat capability, sustainment, and lift, along with the need to forecast future events that call for decisions early in the deployment stage.

ADA commanders are responsible to provide force protection during deployment. They must tailor the force to accomplish the mission against the threat developed during IPB. They may have to sacrifice mobility, redundant communications, and sustainability to bring in sufficient firepower to protect the force and geopolitical assets during the initial phases of the deployment. Counter-RISTA will also be a significant part of the responsibilities of the ADA commanders, especially with respect to UAVs. Protection of joint air defense priorities may outweigh defense of service priorities.


The requirements of entry operations will vary. Each operation will be different. Entry may be either opposed or unopposed. Forces are most vulnerable and the success of the operation at greatest risk during initial entry. This vulnerability is most acute when the enemy possesses weapons of mass destruction. Defensive and offensive operations to counter these weapons will affect ADA, Army, joint, and multinational planning. Protecting the force will be critical to the success of this phase of the operation.

Continuous intelligence support is critical. Entry force commanders will have in-flight intelligence during deployment and entry operations. Once on the ground, a deployable intelligence support element (DISE) will provide split-based intelligence operations by bringing together communications capabilities, automated intelligence fusion systems, and broadcast downlinks in a scalable, deployable package.

Even as entry operations are beginning, the commander shifts focus to building up capabilities in preparation for operations. Entry operations include rapid buildup and expansion which may require the following:

Positioning the forces must achieve initial mission success and also maximize future employment options.

ADA forces provide the requisite force protection, in coordination with other joint and multinational air and missile defense elements. Early deployment of counter-missile and counter-RISTA ADA units is crucial to the success of entry operations. Even in an apparently benign entry operation, protection of the force remains a critical command consideration. Theater missile defense operations protect the lodgment, geopolitical assets, and debarking forces. Counter-RISTA operations deny the enemy targeting information which is key to the enemy sustaining a productive air or missile attack. Units conducting counter-RISTA operations may need to be deployed away from the force to achieve early engagement. As the joint force expands the lodgment, ADA units continue to protect the force and geopolitical assets and deny enemy RISTA throughout the AO. This is particularly critical to deceiving the enemy on the US intended course of action.


At some point in time, the joint force commander will decide to move against the enemy. The ground commander might reposition forces to facilitate the imminent start of combat. ADA units will be required to cover the force while it moves and to mask the move from the enemy. ADA units may be involved in deception operations related to repositioning the force.

Army commanders normally seek to engage enemy forces simultaneously throughout the depth of the AO. The commander weights the main effort with sufficient, sustained combat power to win the decisive battles and allocates enough combat power to supporting efforts to ensure overall victory. Force agility, initiative, and synchronized operations throughout the width and depth of the battlefield characterize ADA operations. Counter-RISTA and force protection remain crucial to the multinational, joint, and Army commanders' plans. Commanders conduct their operations with a sound logistical foundation integrated with their concept of combat operations. Countering helicopters increases in importance during the operations phase. Ensuring freedom to maneuver and minimizing casualties for the force are two of the primary objectives of air defense.

ADA commanders must use the same types of planning processes used by the supported force. This facilitates understanding and synchronization. Naturally the factors which go into the planning process for ADA units will be tailored to their mission and capabilities. Examples of AD estimates and annexes are at Appendix B. ADA commanders use employment principles and guidelines to design air defenses. When applying these principles and guidelines, planners must consider the tactical and technical capabilities of each weapon and sensor system as well as the relevant factors of METT-T, IPB, and the air defense priorities.

Air Defense Employment Principles

There are four principles which commanders apply when planning active air defense operations. These principles are mass, mix, mobility, and integration.

Mass. Mass is the concentration of air defense combat power. It is achieved by assigning enough firepower to successfully defend the force or the asset against air and missile attack or surveillance. To mass air defense combat power, commanders may have to accept risks in other areas of the battlefield.

Mix. Mix is the employment of a combination of weapon and sensor systems to protect the force and assets from the threat. Mix offsets the limitations of one system with the capabilities of another and complicates the problem of the attacker. All joint and multinational arms resources are considered when applying this principle. Proper mix causes the enemy to adjust their tactics. Tactics designed to defeat one system may make the enemy vulnerable to another system.

Mobility. Mobility is the capability to move from place to place while retaining the ability to perform the air defense mission. The mobility of air defense resources must be equivalent to the mobility of the supported force. First priority for mobility should be planning moves that support accomplishment of the mission. Tactical situations may dictate additional moves to enhance survivability. Strategic mobility is essential to support force-projection operations.

Integration. Integration is the close coordination of effort and unity of action which maximizes operational effectiveness. It is applicable, regardless of command relationships established. Active air defense operations must be integrated into the supported commander's concept of the operation. The AD plan describes vertical and horizontal integration of air defense systems across the width and depth of the battlefield. This includes integration with joint and multinational forces.

Air Defense Artillery Employment Guidelines

Six employment guidelines apply when planning and positioning ADA resources. The guidelines are mutual support, overlapping fires, balanced fires, weighted coverage, early engagement, and defense in depth. Which guidelines apply to a given situation depend upon METT-T. See the illustration 4-3.

Mutual support. Mutual support is achieved by positioning weapons so that the fires of one weapon can engage targets within the dead zone of the adjacent weapon system. For gun systems, this dead zone is usually small.

For missile systems, the dead zone can be large and the need for mutual support is great. Mutual support can also be used to cover nonoperational units or units at lower states of readiness.

Overlapping fires. Overlapping fires are achieved by positioning weapons so their engagement envelopes overlap. Because of the many altitudes from which the threat can attack or surveil, the defense planner must apply mutual support or overlapping fires vertically and horizontally.

Balanced fires. Balanced fires are achieved by positioning weapons to deliver an equal volume of fire in all directions. This may be necessary when air defense is used in an area where the terrain does not canalize the enemy, or when the air avenue of approach is not predictable.

Weighted coverage. Weighted coverage is achieved by combining and concentrating fires toward the most likely enemy air avenues of approach or direction of attack. Based on the tactical situation, a commander may risk leaving one direction of attack unprotected or lightly protected to weight coverage toward another direction.

Early engagement. Early engagement is achieved by positioning sensors and weapons so they can engage the threat before ordnance release or target acquisition. Ideally, ADA should engage and destroy the enemy before it can fire on or acquire the defended asset or force.

Figure 4-3. The Six Air Defense Artillery Employment Guidelines

Defense in depth. Defense in depth is achieved by positioning sensors and weapons so the air threat will come under an increasing volume of fire as it approaches the protected asset or force. Defense in depth lowers the probability that the threat will reach the defended asset or force.

Air Defense Priorities

The ADA commander considers METT-T, IPB, and the supported commander's intent and concept of operations before establishing air defense priorities. The ADA commander develops these priorities based on the factors of criticality, vulnerability, recuperability, and the threat. The ADA commander recommends these priorities to the supported commander for approval. See the following illustration.


ADA commander develops and recommends air defense priorities to the supported commander.

  • Considers METT-T, IPB, and the supported commander's intent.

Priorities developed in consideration of criticality, vulnerability, recuperability, and threat.

  • Criticality--The degree to which an asset or force is essential to mission accomplishment.

  • Vulnerability--The degree to which an asset or force is susceptible to surveillance and attack or to damage if attacked.

  • Recuperability--The degree to which an asset or force can recover from inflicted damage to continue its mission.

  • Threat--The probability an asset or force will be targeted by enemy air.

Criticality. Criticality is the degree to which an asset or force is essential to mission accomplishment. Determination of the criticality of an asset or force is made by assessing the impact on the conduct of the operation that would result from damage to the asset or force. The degree of criticality is based on whether damage to the asset or force prevents, seriously interferes with, or causes only limited interference with the execution of the plan.

Vulnerability. Vulnerability is the degree to which an asset or force is susceptible to surveillance and attack or to damage if attacked. Consideration should be given to the asset's or force's hardness, its specific mission in the overall operation, its ability to disperse or displace to another position, its capability to provide for its own air defense, and the amount of protection afforded by its passive air defense measures.

Recuperability. Recuperability is the degree to which an asset or force can recover from inflicted damage in terms of time, equipment, and available manpower to continue its mission. The ADA commander considers the time to replace soldiers, equipment, or entire units, as well as whether a different element can perform the same mission. Assessment of geopolitical assets is provided by coordination with civil authorities.

Threat. The probability of an asset or force being targeted for surveillance or attack by enemy air must be assessed. The use of threat information to develop AD priorities is a reverse IPB process--what we expect enemy air to surveil and attack, based on IPB. Targeting information provided by intelligence estimates, past enemy surveillance and attack methods, and enemy doctrine is useful in evaluating air defense priorities. To determine the relative importance of assets and forces, the ADA commander considers certain characteristics which make an asset or force a lucrative target for the enemy. In effect, this is reverse target value analysis.


When hostilities cease or a truce is declared, deployed forces transition to a period of postconflict operations. This transition can occur in one part of a theater while combat operations are still underway in other parts. Postconflict operations focus on restoring order, minimizing confusion following the operation, reestablishing host nation infrastructure, preparing forces for redeployment, and continuing presence to allow other elements of national power to achieve the overall strategic aims. Postconflict operations place demands on every level of command. Batteries may be called upon to conduct humanitarian assistance and population control. ADA units may be called on to control prisoners, handle refugees, and perform other required humanitarian assistance activities.

However, the postconflict stage may be interrupted by the resumption of hostilities. Thus, units must rapidly consolidate, reconstitute, train, and prepare to remain in theater should the fighting resume. During this time, force protection is vital to prevent isolated attacks. ADA forces concentrate on providing force security and preventing surprise, permitting unimpeded reconstitution and facilitating unopposed embarkation of forces that are no longer needed in theater.


The objective of this stage is to redeploy forces no longer needed. Postconflict requirements have a direct effect on the redeployment flow. Commanders contend with the same challenge as in deployment, balancing the factors of METT-T against available lift assets. Forces not required for subsequent operations will redeploy to home station and prepare for future missions.

Protection of the force during redeployment is as critical as during deployment or any other stage of the operation. While the most significant aerial attack capabilities may have been eliminated, ADA forces must be prepared to counter desperation or retaliatory air and missile attacks.

Reconstitution activities can begin in theater prior to redeployment. They include rebuilding unit integrity and accounting for soldiers and equipment. If the force has been exposed to nuclear, chemical, or biological contaminants, reconstitution activities may include thorough decontamination of personnel and equipment. These activities continue after arrival at home station with the focus on the rebuilding of units back to premobilization levels of readiness, regeneration of logistics stockpiles, and the accountability of mobilized equipment and supplies.


Demobilization is the process by which units, individuals, and materiel transfer from active to a premobilization posture. Although the overall focus is generally on units and individuals, the demobilization of logistics also requires significant resources. Lessons learned must be captured before demobilization is completed.