A theme from America’s first battles is how and why the U.S. military has repeatedly been unprepared to execute its primary mission at the outbreak of hostilities. In many instances this has in fact been the case. This breakdown has been recognized and in the most recent battles or wars this problem has been improved upon substantially. To be able to rectify the problem some analysis must be undertaken to determine what is necessary to be in a position to execute the primary mission. What is required to be able to execute. I will examine and explain some of what is required by looking at two examples. The first example is one in which I feel the military was not prepared and that is the Vietnam War. I will then compare the Vietnam War to Operation Desert Storm.
Operation Desert Storm is an example of the best the military has ever been prepared to execute its primary mission. I will then illustrate how the military has learned from past failures and is now better prepared to execute its primary mission at the onset of hostilities.
To examine and determine if the U.S. military was or is ready to execute its primary mission we must first determine what is required to be ready. A great place to start is to view the categories of any battalion, brigade or division staff sections. In addition to this there are other catalysts that are within the public and politic arenas that have tremendous influence on being prepared. And ultimately what was the objective of the U.S. military.
Was this objective narrow or broad was it clear and easy to define. These factors have a vast influence on the evaluation of preparedness. After defining these factors for each conflict of this essay, I will then summarize the two conflicts in which this essay is based upon.
What was the objective of Desert Storm and Vietnam?
For Desert Storm there was a United Nations resolution that clearly defined the objective. The resolution ordered Iraq to remove its troops from Kuwait by 15 January 1991 or face military repercussions. That objective is clearly defined and is easily understood by any American soldier so as to execute. In contrast the U.S. began sending advisors to Vietnam in the fifties and ultimately beg