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    Total Force Integration

    The United States Army Reserves and Army National Guard has played a vital role for the Department of Defense. Over last four years, since the publishing of Army Directive 2012-08 (Army Total Force Policy) signed by the Secretary of the Army in September 2012, the Army has moved forward in implementing the Total Force policy across all operations. The most prominent integration of Army forces are within logistical unit in the Army Reserve. The Surface Deployment and Distribution Command is leading efforts in incorporating the Total Forces particularly through the partnership with the reserve component in ensuring readiness is maintained and the Army can execute its wartime functions. The 595th Transportation Brigade, which is SDDCs only forward-deployed operational brigade maintains its readiness through the comprehensive relationship and integrations of reserve forces into its formation. As the DoD Single Port Manager (SPM) in the CENTCOM AOR, the 595th Transportation Brigade has the sole mission of managing Port Operations in support of strategic surface movements of US forces. Due to the uniqueness of its mission, the 595th Transportation Brigade, must utilize the Reserve Component Deployment Support Command (DSC) to maintain readiness and execute national strategic objectives. Therefore, the Deployment Support Command efforts ensuring 1184th Deployment and Distribution Support Brigade (DDSB) and the 936th Expeditionary Theater Opening Element (ETOE) were trained and ready to integrate into active component formations were vitally important to readiness and security.
    The 1184th Deployment and Distribution Battalion (DDSB) and the 936th Expeditionary Theater Opening Element (ETOE) were chosen because of their designation as “Ready” in the ARFORGEN cycle. Members from these units augment the 595th Transportation Brigade by providing critical capability to the operational environment. The 1184th DDSB located in Mobile, Alabama is a headquarters element designed to provide mission command and technical supervise of terminal companies and detachments. The 936th ETOE located in Miami, Florida, manages terminal operations in seaports by providing organic, multimodal, multi-ship, 24-hour supervision of contract labor hired to receive, clear, and move forward cargo and provides cargo documentation service and intransit visibility (ITV) in seaports. With this integrated capability, 595th Transportation Brigade was able to maintain its readiness and provide additional capability for increased velocity in ports throughout the area of responsibility.
    In order to provide the readiness and increased capability to an active Army force, efforts to achieve a successful mobilization were in order. The mobilization process begins with First Army notifying the units. The First Army then focuses on the commander’s requirements for the mission nine months to a year out from the unit's actual mobilization. Soon after notification a Joint Assessment Conference (JAC) confirms commanders identify pre- and post-mobilization tasks, reserve units training requirements, develop a training plan to synchronize the entire mobilization process and finally select a mobilization training center. During this period of the training phase, selected deploying Soldiers are allowed time to attend 1059 producing courses. DSC deploying Soldiers were expected to have priority of training courses, however some scheduled schools were cancelled less than 24 hours before execution. Nonetheless, Soldiers conducted some pre-deployment training at the Deployment Support Command headquarters located in Birmingham, Alabama. This training included the Theater Academic Seminar (TAS) in which member of 595th Transportation Brigade and the subordinate battalions facilitated theater specific training. After a month of pre-deployment training, Soldiers returned home to prepare to leave for mobilization.
    The 1184th mobilized in Mobile, AL on 27 October 2016 at the USAR Center. An activation ceremony was conducted on the USS Alabama in Mobile Bay on 29 October 2016. About 200 family members and friends gathered together on the deck for a farewell. MG (ret) Janet Cobb, former 1184th DDSB commander and director of the USS Alabama Battleship Memorial Park, was the guest speaker. The ceremony culminated with well-wishes from family members and goodbyes in preparation for the twelve hour bus ride the next day to the mobilization site, North Fort Hood, TX.
    The union between the 1184th and 936th prior to deployment occurred at Fort Hood. They joined to conduct training at the mobilization site. The time spent at the mobilization site is dedicated to bringing units up to date on current key tactics, techniques and procedures used in the theater. Their collective efforts culminated with the Mission Rehearsal Exercise (MRX). However, this MRX could have been better prepared by providing better training material, SOPs and mission plans. After the MRX and validation, Soldiers were granted a 4 day pass over the Thanksgiving holiday. 6 days later they were on their way to begin a new mission. The Soldiers were greeted at the Gateway by several members of the 595th Transportation Brigade’s chain of command. In processing and lodging were the first order of business, after a long 2 days of flying. The next 24 hours involved rest, chow and orientation to the area of operations.
    Leadership plays an important part in the integration process. Army leadership continues to work to overcome the challenges in Total Force training and readiness. Leaders have to provide guidance on the direction of training required for new members and provide a blueprint of how the mission will proceed in the future. It is vital that commanders leverage the capabilities of the total force to support operational missions. Reserve Soldiers has to be afforded the same resources and courses as active Soldiers. It is a necessity to train and maintain skills.
    Effective transitions are key to the success of continuous operations. It is accomplished through effective continuity books and efficient processes. CPT Lance Baker, a reserve Soldier assigned to the 831st Transportation Battalion stated “RIP/TOA at the 831st Trans BN was a success. We immediately felt integrated in all BN operations and learned our respective jobs in short order.”

    The reserve component will play an ever increasing role in active component formations. Therefore, DSC and 595th Transportation Brigade must continue to leverage the capabilities of the total force to support ongoing missions.



    Date Taken: 01.31.2017
    Date Posted: 04.08.2017 01:28
    Story ID: 229681
    Location: KW

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