A Modest Proposal for Air Attack Combat Aviation Advisors, Sandy Green, 9781249593393


This study highlights a gap between USAF’s doctrine and capability in the field of foreign internal defense. Air Force doctrine calls for FID to be conducted across the spectrum of airpower functions, but the current competencies do not include counterland. The author believes that the discrepancy should be rectified, either by changing the doctrine or developing the capacity. He offers four historical examples of counterinsurgencies in which aerial attack was central to military success before concluding that the doctrine is not in error. The next task is to discover if there are contemporary cases in which US allies facing insurgencies might benefit from attack combat aviation advisory missions. After eliminating from consideration thirty-four countries as being unsuitable for a number of reasons, he analyzes both potential FID partners and their insurgent opponents to predict which countries pose the best opportunity for successful FID missions. The criteria include the vulnerability of the insurgent forces to air attack, the capability of the host nation air force to absorb and sustain the advisory instruction, and the government legitimacy and respect for the rule of law. He then proposes a path for building an attack advisory capability that is in harmony with the existing FID structure, the goal being a targeted and measured expansion that encounters little resistance and creates minimal disruption. The focus throughout is on the needs of the host nation and the skills of the advisors; aircraft are discussed only with regard to acquiring the appropriate representative samples for advisor proficiency.

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