BOOTS GET CLOSER TO THE GROUND as the U.S. expands its war against the Islamic State, the Army is preparing to deploy a division headquarters to Iraq.
Officials have not identified the division that will deploy — the first division headquarters to go to Iraq since the U.S. withdrawal in 2011.
An official announcement is expected in the coming days. But Army Chief of Staff Gen. Ray Odierno recently confirmed the Army “will send another division headquarters to Iraq to control what we’re doing there, a small headquarters.”
It’s unclear how many soldiers will be sent, or how long they will deploy. Division headquarters average between 100 and 500 soldiers and deploy for one year.
The division headquarters deploying to Iraq is expected to be responsible for coordinating the efforts of the 1,600 troops President Obama has sent to Iraq. Many of these troops are advising and assisting the Iraqi Security Forces, others are providing extra security, while some are providing intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities. The headquarters also is expected to head up the joint operations center that since July has been run by Maj. Gen. Dana Pittard, the deputy commanding general for operations, for U.S. Army Central. General Pittard is a potential commander to head up this deployed Div HQ.
I guess we now need a two star general and an entire Division Headquarters to manage our 1,600 “no boots on the ground” levitating soldiers. Last time I looked a Division HQ managed 10,000 to 25,000 troops depending on the Division type. So I have to assume that commanding “floating above the ground” troops is10 to 15 times harder to manage than regular ‘ground pounders’. Or maybe this is just inflation…it certainly can’t be “mission creep” since they still have no defined mission.
How many more times is the US going to go to war without an understanding what they actually intend to do, how they are going to do it, how many resources will be necessary to achieve the mission, and how and how to ‘get the hell out’ when the mission is complete.
The level of apparent incompetence within the political and military elite appears ‘gob-smacking’. These guys can’t be that stupid. Yet they make the same mistakes time and again. There are only a few logical reasons that I can think of for this apparent confusion. Hubris and ego combined with a massive need to climb the ‘slippery pole’ of power and to hell with the national interest.
Alternatively this is possibly a precursor to a major redeployment of US forces back into Iraq. With two Marine Expeditionary Afloat MEAs in theatre within a couple of weeks plus air deployable Army forces re-entering the Middle East through Gulf nations, the new Divisional Headquarters in Iraq will have plenty of ‘ground pounders’ available to command. (see USN Carrier Battle Group LOCSTATS)
Just don’t expect too many overt signs, of this re-deployment initiative however, until after the US Mid-Term elections. After all a the current administration in the US has a lot of PR spin invested in getting troops out of the Middle East. Any major re-deployment of US forces back into Iraq would be a huge humiliation for the Obama Administration, and could have a massively negative effect on Democratic Party turn out for the Mid-Terms.