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Operation Iraqi Freedom - Orders of Battle

Operation Iraqi Freedom - Orders of Battle

Operation Iraqi Freedom - Orders of

file:///C|/Documents%20and%20Settings/Rikhye/Desktop/history/%2346%20June%2030,%202004/OIF.html Operation Iraqi Freedom Planning Shawn Dudley The American liberation of Iraq from the Hussein Regime is perhaps one of the most complex, and certainly risky, military operations the US Army has conducted in the last 50 years. American forces in Operation Iraqi Freedom were employed in about half the numbers the original CENTCOM plan had envisioned (3 divisions instead of 6), made their assault in about half the time (22 days as opposed to 45), and encountered both major weather problems as well as unforeseen opposition from irregulars in support of the Hussein Regime and Al-Qaeda. Following the phase of the initial destruction of the regime was what continues to be the very difficult work of pacifying the nation, which, while it compares well versus past conflicts such as Vietnam and the Philippine Insurrection of the 1900s, still has caused a great deal of trouble to our relatively medium-sized army. The Army has announced a portion of its OIF-3 rotation already, which will include the 3rd Infantry and 101st Airborne Divisions, as well as National Guard units. It seems likely given the amount of blood and treasure the US has spent so far, it is very unlikely we will be leaving Iraq for the foreseeable future. Original Plans for Invasion: Mid-1990s As a prelude to the Section, we can detail CENTCOM's original expected order of battle for an invasion of Iraq, as composed in the early to mid 1990s. US Forces in such a major operation were expected to number six Army divisions and two Marine divisions, plus appropriate Air and Naval support. This compares to seven Army division, two Marine divisions, two Allied divisions (one French, one British), and other regional forces employed in Operation Desert Storm in 1991. Using the mid-1990s numbers, such an invasion force might have looked like this HQ Third US Army First Wave: XVIII Airborne Corps (would arrive within 30 days) 82nd Airborne Division - deploy by air 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) - deploy by sea file:///C|/Documents%20and%20Settings/Rikhye/Desktop/history/%2346%20June%2030,%202004/OIF.html (1 of 4)7/6/2004 11:28:00 AM

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