Danish Defence Research Database


Den manøvrebaserede tilgang: … og anvendelsen under Operation Iraqi Freedom i 2003

Student thesis: Diploma Thesis

  • Nicolai Kudsk Knudsen
Afgangsprojekt, (Diploma)
During the Iraq War in 2003 the United States and its coalition partners fought Saddam and his loyal army. The coalition forces swept over Iraq quickly and swiftly and within three weeks, Bagdad was under coalition control.

This project is illustrating how the manoeuvrist approach was part of the coalition’s warfare in Iraq. The project includes a thorough description of the approach, a short summary of the Iraq war in 2003 as well as a description of other indirect approaches. The analyses of the war is conducted using the manoeuvrist approach as an analytical tool. The last part of the project covers a discussion of the approach in Iraq, the conclusion on the findings and a suggestion to further research of the manoeuvrist approach.

The manoeuvrist approach had very positive effects on the course of the coalition’s war in Iraq. The findings of the analysis show several successful examples of where the approach was part of the reasoning behind operational planning including focus on the initiative, decision-making, the understanding of the situation, cohesion and will to fight.

Even though the manoeuvrist approach wasn’t enrolled as part of NATO’s doctrine for Allied Joint Land Operations before 2007, the approach was clearly part of the way the coalition fought in Iraq in 2003.

Furthermore, the study argues that the philosophy behind the approach is appropriate and should be exploited further by the Danish Army. For example, by integrating it into the education of coming soldiers and by implementing the approach in future warfare. The manoeuvrist approach is already part of the Danish doctrine, therefore the transformation of doctrine to training shouldn’t be too tricky
Publication date8 Nov 2018
Number of pages74
Publishing institutionHærens Officersskole
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