Transforming for Stabilization and Reconstruction Operations by Hans Binnendijk and Stuart E. Johnson, National Defense University

Recent military operations in Afghanistan and Iraq were characterized by the rapid defeat of the enemy's military forces, by the relatively small size of the U.S. force, and by a very limited destruction of the critical civilian infrastructure. This success can be credited in large part to the ongoing transformation of the U.S. military evident in its effective use of information superiority, precision strike, and rapid maneuver on the battlefield.

It is precisely the success of the U.S. military in transforming its forces to execute rapid decisive operations that makes it imperative to transform how it prepares for and executes stabilization and reconstruction (S&R) operations. The very rapid defeat of the enemy military means the U.S. must be ready to field the resources needed to secure stability and begin the reconstruction process promptly-even concurrently-with the end of major combat. This can only be done if planning for the stabilization and reconstruction operations is integrated into planning for major combat operations from the beginning, moreover, need to be the right skills in the theater to begin their operations concurrently with the surrender or collapse of the enemy military.

This book examines the various elements of the stabilization and reconstruction capabilities needed by the U.S. military. It addresses systematically the range of issues that must be resolved to transform S&R operations, including military strategy, organization, technology, personnel, and education.