This is crucial to maintain a single center of command and control, to avoid contradictions or miscommunications that might arise due to multiple centers of command and control. While I was deployed, the Assistant Secretary of the Army had operational control, which implies I was bound to obey any orders from the ASA like everyone else in the unit. However, in the capacity of the theatre lead for my project manager (PM), I was also obligated to support and promote the best interests of my Program Manager (PM) at times while in deployment.
I encountered numerous situations when the best interests of my PM directly conflicted with my orders from the (ASA (ALT)); on any of these occasions, I was asked to execute tasks that my PM organization did not agree with. I had a difficult time reconciling the conflicting interests of my PM and the (ASA (ALT)); that is, I was often torn between obeying my orders and ensuring my PM’ s best interests are taken into consideration. In most cases, I was compelled to obey my orders to offend the ASA (ALT) deputy GS 15 and a full bird Colonel, as well as my Colonel stateside.
In the course of this tour, I also learnt that the Modified Table of Organization and Equipment (MTOE) does not adequately describe all the support the war fighter needs; it requires more support personnel to provide adequate operational energy power requirements for several COPs and FOBs. In an Army battalion, support individuals are drawn from the Forward Support Company (FSCs), yet every FSC has only authorized 2 or 3 91 generator mechanics, based on their MTOE.
The incorporation of the FSCs into maneuver contingent has undeniably augmented the combat responsibility for logisticians, thereby enabling soldiers to in logistics military occupational specialities to work for maneuver, fire as well as effects (MFE) contingent. The FSCs are tasked with providing full spectrum logistics support to their specific maneuver contingent in order to sustain unified ground combat operations.
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