Can’t Tell the Players WIthout a Field Manual

Robert Farley reports on a visit to an Army training facility at Fort Knox and observes, “one thing that I found particularly interesting is that in this discussion of transformation and training revision NO ONE mentioned FM 3-24; indeed, while the captains we spoke to later in the afternoon knew about it, none we spoke to had read it.”

FM 3-24 is, of course, the famous counterinsurgency field manual written by General David Petraeus before he was posted to Iraq, a document that’s been much chewed-over by national security reporters and pundits. Of course, I suppose it’s possible that the manual is having a large impact on training through second-order effects even though it doesn’t seem to be widely read, but this does call into question how much has really changed since its completion.