TF Smith Staff Ride as Leader Professional Development

by Capt. Etienne P. Jeanjacques IV, 3rd Military Intelligence Battalion
Stripes Korea

3rd MI BN HIGHLIGHTS
TF Smith Staff Ride

UNITS
3rd MI BN

Description: On 8 and 21 February 2017, 3rd MI BN (AE) conducted Staff Rides as Leader Professional Development on the site at which TF Smith fought the Korean People’s Army in July 1950 in the first US battle of the Korean War. The training audience for these Staff Rides was junior enlisted personnel.

The Soldiers discussed the strategic guidance given to TF Smith and the inconsistencies within it, the tactical conduct of the battle while walking the actual battlefield, how "readiness" effected the conduct of the battle (based on a pre-reading on 8A readiness in 1950), and the battle's significance for US-ROK relations.

Assessment: A total of 39x junior enlisted personnel in grades E1-E5 attended, and the event resulted in significant professional development for the attendees. The junior NCOs in particular enjoyed the critical discussion of readiness and engaged in a heated debate over whether TF Smith had been adequately prepared by its leaders for war. Most concluded it had not been.
 

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