Tuesday, September 28, 2010

FM 3-28 Civil Support Ops

A new Field Manual {August 2010]has finally appeared after several years in the revision process post Hurricane Katrina providing doctrine for civil support operations. This should be considered a seminal document for military and civil relationships. My hope is that it is studies and analyzed in detain by various interested persons involved HS/EM.

One thing I always find of interest in expressions of doctrine are the various definitions that are utilized in the document.

Set forth at one point FM 3-28 provides the following:

"Homeland security and homeland defense are complementary components of the National Security
Strategy. Homeland defense is the protection of U.S. sovereignty, territory, domestic population, and
critical defense infrastructure against external threats and aggression, or other threats as directed by the
President (Joint Publication (JP) 3-27). Missions are defined as homeland defense if the nation is under
concerted attack from a foreign enemy. Department of Defense leads homeland defense and is supported
by the other federal agencies. In turn, Department of Defense supports the Nation's homeland security
effort, which is led by the Department of Homeland Security. Homeland security is the concerted national
effort to prevent terrorist attacks within the United States; reduce America's vulnerability to terrorism,
major disasters, and other emergencies; and minimize the damage and recover from attacks, major
disasters, and other emergencies that occur (JP 3-28). In both homeland defense and homeland security, the
Army conducts civil support operations. The discussion in this field manual emphasizes civil support
operations in support of homeland security."

I would have argued for an all-hazards definition and more use of terminology that reflects civil planning concepts and to the extent the document does not it reflects the DOD concern to always be other than "supportive" in its civil relationships. That said hoping others will bring to the attention of this blogger analytical pieces on this document and doctrine. Note it does NOT use the normal all-hazards paradigms or even accurate reflect the military role in the National Response Framework [NRF]! But hey it does provide an effort at updating what has been documented by GAO as the failure of DOD to provide a systems approach to key civil support ops.