The Department of Defense Should Implemented Mandatory Foreign Language Training for All Members

In: Social Issues

Submitted By sbettwy
Words 3586
Pages 15
College of Distance Education
NAVAL WAR COLLEGE
Newport, R.I.

IT’S ABOUT TIME THAT THE DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE IMPLEMENTED MANDATORY FOREIGN LANGUAGE TRAINING FOR ALL MEMBERS

By

Samuel W. Bettwy

Lieutenant Colonel, Judge Advocate, U.S. Army Reserve

A paper submitted to the Faculty of the Naval War College in partial satisfaction of the requirements of the Department of Joint Military Operations.

The contents of this paper reflect my own personal views and are not necessarily endorsed by the Naval War College or the Department of the Navy.

Signature: s/ Samuel W. Bettwy

28 January 2013

_______________________________ John F. Sussilleaux, Professor
INTRODUCTION
It is generally recognized that future U.S. military operations will be multinational. As the Naval War College instructs: “There is no reason to believe American military forces will ever undertake a major operation alone without some other nations participating.”[i] As the Army states in its field manual on Training for Full Spectrum Operations, leaders must prepare to operate at the tactical level in operations involving multinational forces.[ii] And as Joint Publication 3-16 states, “US forces cannot assume that the predominant language will automatically be English”[iii] in coalition operations. Recognizing that multinational operations are the inevitable way of the future, the Department of Defense (DOD) acknowledges the importance of language capability among all ranks across the full range of military operations. DOD also recognizes the reality that only “some” servicemembers will be familiar with the language of coalition partners or local nationals.[iv] In its 2005 Defense Language Transformation Roadmap,[v] DOD concedes that “[l]anguage skill and regional expertise are not valued as Defense…...

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