The 3d Sustainment Brigade support operations
class V (ammunition) section provided oversight
and management and planned the responsible
drawdown of ammunition for the corps storage area
(CSA), ammunition supply point (ASP), and seven
ammunition transfer holding points (ATHPs) in U.S.
Division North (USD–N) and U.S. Division Central
During Operation Iraqi Freedom 10–11 and Operation
New Dawn, the class V section coordinated and provided
oversight for the movement and resupply of ammunition
from the ammunition storage activities (ASAs)
throughout the area of operations. The section developed
plans, policies, programs, and procedures for the class V
wartime mission and future operations. It was responsible
for managing retrograde, redistribution operations, and
common-item support with the other services.
The class V section was manned with Soldiers with
military occupational specialties 890A (ammunition
warrant officer), 89B (ammunition specialist), and 89A
(ammunition stock control and accounting specialist).
Throughout the deployment, the section provided support
to seven brigade combat teams (BCTs), six advise and
assist brigades, and two combat aviation brigades, including
air assault, Armor, cavalry, Aviation, and Engineer
units. The class V section verified that all subordinate
units continuously possessed the proper combat load and
ensured that the supporting ASAs maintained a current
The section successfully provided ammunition support
to more than 100 units in USD–N and USD–C. Simultaneously,
it supported the retrograde of more than 3,000
tons of ammunition valued at $278 million to Kuwait
and cross-leveled 1,020 tons of ammunition from Iraq to
Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.
Reducing Class V in Iraq
While rightsizing ASAs, the class V section continuously
anticipated and adapted to changing circumstances.
Executing the class V reduction in Iraq and moving the
past 7 years’ accumulation of ammunition was a mission
in itself. The section developed a plan and supervised the
closure of one ATHP and the conversions of the theater’s
only CSA to an ASP, an ASP to an ATHP, and four ATHPs
to four basic load ammunition holding areas.
During the conversions and rightsizing of ASA operations,
the section realized that the contractor, KBR, which
had been assisting with daily ammunition operations,
was removed from the CSA and ASP prematurely. The
workload at the time was equivalent to when the CSA
was operated by a company-sized element with KBR
augmentation during the 2008 surge. The heavy and
medium platoon operations at the ASP would need to be
During the initial phase of the responsible drawdown
of forces from Iraq, the class V section played an integral
role in setting the conditions and reconfiguring the class
V structure. The section was able to redistribute 8 million
rounds valued at $10 million to an enduring ASA. The
closure of the ATHP enabled the commanders to use the
closed site as a consolidated multi-unit ammunition holding
area to reduce the explosive storage site footprint.
To better support the using units, the section restructured
and streamlined the ammunition shipping process to
fill ammunition requests by coordinating with the 3d Sustainment
Brigade’s transportation section and movement
control battalion. The restructure decreased customer
resupply wait time from 20 days to 5 days.
Because of the section’s proficiency in Standard Army
Ammunition System–Modernization (SAAS–MOD), it
was able to issue 1,300 lateral transfer directives (LTDs)
and track and manage the retrograde of class V. Once
they were created using SAAS–MOD, the LTDs were
exported into a Microsoft Excel “.slk” file and emailed to
all parties involved.
The section also maintained asset visibility of ammunition
using SAAS–MOD, the Total Ammunition Management
Information System (TAMIS), the Munitions
Report, and the Battle Command Sustainment Support
System (BCS3). Incorporating these multiple systems
July–August 2012 11
improved forecasting and consumption analysis for 25
mission-critical Department of Defense identification
codes (DODICs). Analyzing the expenditures daily using
a logistics status report or BCS3 and requiring ammunition
managers to submit a monthly expenditure report
ensured that the remaining ASAs effectively supported
the units’ requirements.
How It Was Done
The class V section’s Soldiers proactively assisted
incoming and outgoing units in all facets of ammunition
operations. They reviewed, validated, and approved
ammunition requests. Remarkably, the section managed
more than 5,000 tons of ammunition valued at more than
$365 million. It tracked 2,500 LTDs moving through the
Iraq joint operations area, totaling 1,000 tons of mmunition.
The section also revised ammunition procedures in
order to resupply units that no longer had an ATHP.
The class V section continued to evaluate the stockage
objective for the remaining ASAs against the units’ combat load requirements as BCTs transitioned to advise
and assist brigades. The section’s meticulous attention to
detail enabled it to predict call-forward requirements so
units would not fall below 75 percent of their authorizations
for critical ammunition. This ensured a constant
flow of ammunition resupply throughout USD–N and
In determining the call-forward requirements, the section
compared the ASAs’ stockage objectives and the
lot locators generated using SAAS–MOD, the ASAs’ on-hand quantities, the unit’s authorization, the unit’s
on-hand quantities, and the mission. The section tracked
the unit’s on-hand quantities and expenditure rate using a
logistics status report, BCS3, and TAMIS to collect data
on expenditure reporting. Analyzing the collected data
provided a common operational picture for future requirements
and helped to determine delivery time.
In an effort to reduce excess stocks above approved
stockage objectives, the section analyzed mission requirements.
It was imperative for units to accurately account
for the ammunition they had on hand. This information
provided ammunition managers with a current common
operational picture. As the force structure was reduced,
class V stocks were also reduced to levels required to accomplish
ongoing missions without interruption.
The reduction of class V occurred in five phases. The
first three phases included retrograding unserviceable
ammunition to the demilitarization site in Iraq, retrograding
ammunition not expended in the last 12 months, and
retrograding ammunition with no current stockage objective
to Kuwait. The last two phases included retrograding
ammunition in excess of stockage objectives and in
excess of critical DODICs.
Contingency stocks were requisitioned, configured,
and pre-positioned in order to support the maneuver
force during contingency operations. Theater stocks were
reduced by approximately 50 percent in 8 months in conjunction
with the reduction of the force while the ASAs
were rightsized to the required levels.
Training for the Job
To ensure that Soldiers managing and operating ASPs
in the future are better prepared, leaders at all levels must
ensure that they are thoroughly trained and cross-trained
in the basic ammunition operations functions of forecasting,
SAAS–MOD, expenditure reporting, munitions reporting,
BCS3, and TAMIS. The Mobilization Ordnance
Specific Training program (conducted primarily at Blue
Grass Army Depot, Kentucky) is designed to provide
ammunition professionals with some of the necessary
tools and instruction to help them succeed as ammunition
advisers in theater. It includes refresher information,
Army sustainment doctrine, and discussion of relevant
The Army Forces Command Standard Army Management
Information System Mobile Training Team, offered
through Cobham Analytic Solutions, also provides units
with additional training on SAAS–MOD. The program
includes a combined 40 hours of training on system administration
and ASP functional operations.
During its tour in Iraq, the class V section improved
the management of excess and unserviceable ammunition
and successfully closed one ATHP and converted the
theater’s only CSA to an ASP, an ASP to an ATHP, and
four ATHPs to basic load ammunition holding areas while
supplying the forces with required munitions. This was
done in conjunction with the retrograde of 5,044 tons of
non-mission-essential ammunition to Kuwait, the crossleveling
of ammunition to Afghanistan, and the demolition
of unserviceable ammunition.
The class V section also provided invaluable insight
when dealing with foreign military sales for other agencies.
Forecasting and communication was the key to the
overall success of the mission. Throughout the process,
the Soldiers of the class V section were consummate
professionals with unparalleled dedication to duty. They
proved they were capable of managing the Army’s three
most precious commodities: Soldiers, time, and money.