What is the Role of Heavy Armor in the Army of 2020?   [open pdf - 2MB]

From the thesis abstract: "With operations in Iraq complete and an ongoing transition in Afghanistan, what is the role of the heavy armor force in the Army of 2020? This thesis analyzes the capabilities of the current heavy force through the lens of the current strategic context and Army operational concepts articulated in the Unified Land Operations to determine the role of the heavy force in 2020. Although several senior leaders have stated that armor will play a significant role in the future, none have articulated what that role will be. As the Army focuses on force reduction and economic constraints, it must also prepare a future fighting force to succeed against competitors who will employ all forms of warfare and tactics, perhaps simultaneously. As the Israeli Defense Force learned with difficulty in the Second Lebanon War, only well prepared ground forces can defeat a hybrid threat in complex terrain. The thesis demonstrates that when employed with supporting systems of dismounted infantry and artillery, the heavy armor force capabilities of mobility, firepower, and protection provide the overmatch necessary to fight and win against the hybrid threats of 2020."

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