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The Army goes to great lengths to capture lessons learned and preserve these lessons for current practitioners and future generations. Though the Army is one of the most self-critical organizations found in American society, a well-deserved reputation has also been earned for failing to inculcate those lessons by transforming the institutional Army. Change is achieved through a continuous cycle of adaptive innovation, experimentation, and experience. In Iraq, out of necessity while in contact with a dynamic enemy, the Army transformed on the battlefield with radical changes in doctrine, organization, training, and materiel, which significantly enabled battlefield success. As a result of the withdrawl of troops from Iraq at the end of 2011, this Paper analyzes the success of the military’s counterinsurgency strategy and nation-building efforts, examines the future of combat which the Army may face in order to recommend a suitable force posture, and makes recommendations for future competencies and capabilities utilizing the problem-solving construct of DOTMLPF in order to ensure future victories in this relevant component of the full spectrum of conflict.
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G. Scott Taylor Lieutenant Colonel,
Beyond the Battlefield: Institutional Army Transformation Following Victory in Iraq ( US Army War College Press, 2012),