Reflection on Baghdad Seizure
Here's a great quote from an outstanding book, The March Up : Taking Baghdad with the 1st Marine Division: About Entering Baghdad: A single battalion plans its movement: "Under the old doctrine, the plan would have been to deploy abreast two companies with tanks across the five-kilometer front and advance down the peninsula block by block, reaching the university at the western end by the afternoon of the second day. "Instead McDonough proposed rolling through the center of the Snoozle [a certain piece of terrain in Baghdad where palaces are located], tanks in the lead, peeling off one company to secure the embassies and one platoon to guard the approaches to the central bridges, and sending tanks on with one company to search the university. Conlin [the Bn Cmdr] should ignore random RPG shots, McDonough [the operations officer] urged, and concentrate on grabbing the three key pieces of real estate; he should rely on shock to crumble the resolve of any stay-behinds. He should finish taking the Snoozle in four hours and the next day move on to another sector. In other sectors, the Army and Marine units were planning the same type of nonlinear movement." I quote this here because it is an excellent look at the "bypass and collapse" vs "straight up the middle" concepts of attacking a city. No doubt similar formulations have been used in Fallujah. Maneuver warfare triumphs again. Four hours vs. two days. Outstanding. Think on this when reading press reports.