The United States Recent Wars Against Iraq

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The United States of America fought within the last two decades two major wars against Iraq, which were totally different in their character. On the one hand, in 1990 America conducted Operation Desert Storm to defeat Iraq after its invasion of Kuwait, mainly with traditional also called conventional warfare. On the other hand, Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) in 2003, which was after the declared defeat of Saddam Hussein’s military forces a brutal conflict of U.S. forces together with the new government authorities against non-state actors primarily executed through irregular warfare. The economic crisis in 2008 also forced America to reduce its military budget due to a huge national debt, but the global threats remain the same and therefore the United States has to prioritize its capabilities. Therefore, the U.S. military should increase irregular warfare capabilities and limit its conventional abilities to an initial entry element to achieve the national security objectives of the United States of America in the 21st century.
The first step in prioritizing U.S. capabilities is the definition of irregular and conventional warfare as well as pointing out the national strategic objectives of the United States of America. In 2008 the Department of Defense defined irregular warfare as “[a] violent struggle among state and non-state actors for legitimacy and influence over the relevant population(s). Irregular warfare favors indirect and asymmetric approaches, though it may employ the full range of military and other capacities, in order to erode an adversary’s power, influence, and will.” On the other hand, the definition of conventional or traditional warfare is “[a] form of warfare between the regulated militaries of states, or ...

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...gional involvement to increase security. Additionally, each insurgency is due to its historical, cultural, and regional context unique and requests a different preparation to be successful, which points out the unpredictable risk of each conflict.
In conclusion, the United States should increase its SOF and highly trained military personnel to strengthen American irregular warfare capabilities. In contrast, the USA should limit its conventional warfare abilities to an ‘initial entry element’ consisting of 18 active maneuver elements to strike globally with conventional means if necessary. A reserve system tailored to the U.S. budget is a prerequisite to ensure mobilization and additional capabilities. The counter insurgency conflict is the biggest challenge for the American national strategic objectives due to its risk, resource intensity, and undermining effect.
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