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During Desert Shield, the Air Force built a very complicated organizational architecture to control large numbers of air sorties. During the air campaign itself, officers at each level of the Central Command Air Forces believed they were managing the chaos of war. Yet, when the activities of the many significant participants are pieced together, it appears that neither the planners nor Lt. Gen. Charles A. Horner, the Joint Force Air Component Commander, knew the details of what was happening in the air campaign or how well the campaign was going. There was little appreciation of the implications of complex organizational architectures for military command and control. Against a smarter and more aggressive foe, the system may well have failed.
About the Author
MARK D. MANDELES is President of the J. de Bloch Group.
THOMAS C. HONE is a member of the faculty of the George C. Marshall Center.
SANFORD S. TERRY is Lieutenant Colonel, United States Air Force.
Table of Contents
The Black Hole and Its Impact in Desert Shield
The TACC and GAT in Desert Storm
Bomb Damage Assessment and Command and Control of the Air Campaign
Lt. Gen. Charles A. Horner as the First Joint Force Air Component Commander
Appendix: "Black Hole" Strategic Air Campaign Planners
Notes on Sources