The Challenges of Command

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  • Topic: Army, 101st Airborne Division, Military ranks
  • Pages : 2 (549 words )
  • Download(s) : 236
  • Published : April 11, 2009
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The Challenge of Command: US Army COL Roger H. Nye, New Jersey, Avery Publishing Company, 1986. A compilation of ideas and lessons learned during the author’s military career. He infers reading military events facilitates a leaders understanding of success and failure. Eight categories emphasize the authors point. In chapter one titled visions of our military selves, focuses on a lieutenant reporting to his first military unit. The author interviews Army Brigade Commanders including Colonel Peter M. Dawkins, Commander of 3rd Brigade, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) at the time. The author asks what his lieutenants need to learn and Colonel Dawkins answered as follows: “Most lieutenants who have been in a company for a year know their jobs really well but real learning comes from being in the job.” He then went on to say, “I don’t believe its naïve or unrealistic to expect junior officers to read.” Chapter two focuses on the challenges of the commander. Commanders must direct with authority and think in order to make sound judgments. The commander’s role cannot be taught but can be generated by a vision of mission and professional values. Chapter three suggests a company commander must be more technically competent than anyone else on weapon systems, tactics, communications and training. Lastly, he must eliminate the ten percent bad Soldiers so that the other ninety percent can do their jobs. Chapter four concentrates on the commander as a tactician. Then Lieutenant Colonel Wesley Clark urged his officers at Fort Carson, Colorado to study maps. He said an officer should ask “Where am I on this map?” Then: “What is the best way of moving a military force through this terrain?” Ask this same map, “If I were organizing this terrain for defense by a combined arms team, what geographical features would guide my thinking about the kind of defense I would use?” Chapter five verbalizes the commander as a warrior. We have...
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