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Newsletter 10-46
June 2010

Foreword

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This publication provides a series of articles on interagency issues related to complex operations. Complex operations include stabilization and reconstruction operations, counterinsurgency, and irregular warfare. These operations demand the integration of U.S., coalition, host-nation, and nongovernment capabilities to end violence, rebuild governments and societies, develop economies, and create the conditions for lasting peace and stability.

The articles have been compiled by the Center for Complex Operations (CCO). The CCO was initially formed in the summer of 2008 and is now located at the National Defense University (NDU). Its four overlapping functions, as directed by Congress, are to provide for effective coordination in the preparation of Department of Defense and other U.S. government (USG) personnel for complex operations; foster unity of effort among the departments and agencies of the USG, foreign governments and militaries, international organizations, and nongovernmental organizations; conduct research, collect, analyze, distribute lessons learned, and compile best practices in matters relating to complex operations; and identify gaps in the training and education of military and civilian governmental personnel relating to complex operations, and facilitate efforts to fill such gaps.

The CCO is comprised of permanent representatives from the Office of the Secretary of Defense, the State Department's Office of the Coordinator for Reconstruction and Stabilization, and the U.S. Agency for International Development and draws from the expertise of NDU, civilian academic institutions, the U.S. Institute of Peace, and the military services and commands. Recent CCU activities include conducting conferences and seminars on whole-of-government approaches to complex operations, developing training programs for Ministry of Defense advisors in Iraq and Afghanistan, and assessing the lessons learned by returning members of provincial reconstruction teams.

This publication is provided to those preparing to deploy to Iraq and Afghanistan with the hope it may provide a better understanding of the capabilities, and sometimes concerns, which must be considered if we are to succeed in the highly complex civil-military environment that characterize the current conflicts we face.

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Last Reviewed: May 18, 2012

 
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