The last 20 years of Counterinsurgency employing precision strikes against an enemy force hidden amongst the civilian population has required a legal review of suck strikes before they are ordered to minimize incidental and collateral damage to civilians and protected places. The Marine Corps’ shift toward Expeditionary Advanced Base Operations (EABO) that calls for a “an alternative forward force posture based on a more difficult to target, low-signature, and dispersed forward-basing infrastructure” reverses those roles particularly when considering the requirement to make use of civilian infrastructure to maintain that low profile.
For a Pioneer nation like America, built on exploration and a seemingly endless frontier, the romance of expeditions is part of our national psyche. The term “Expeditionary Force” sounds cool, as it evokes feelings of adventure and risk-taking in far-away places. Expeditionary forces are comprised of tough, competent men who travel light in remote areas, and rely on their wits to survive and win in unfamiliar environments. Thus, it’s only natural we want to call everything our military does abroad an “Expeditionary Force.”
About the Author(s)
The U.S. military needs to maintain a global presence; dominate locally; be able to sustain stability operations; and be able to concentrate forces to meet more robust threats.