Ř Colonel (ret) Douglas Macgregor is a decorated combat veteran, an independent businessman, the author of four books and a PhD. Macgregor was commissioned in the US. Army in 1976 after one year at the Virginia Military Institute and four years at West Point.
Ř Macgregor’s newest book: Warrior’s Rage: The Great Tank Battle of 73 Easting, will be available from the Naval Institute Press in September. In it Macgregor explains how the failure to finish the battle with the Republican Guard along the 73 Easting in 1991 led to Iraq’s second major confrontation with the United States in 2003 resulting in two hollow "victories" and the tragic blood-letting that continues today in Iraq.
Ř Macgregor’s concepts from his groundbreaking books on transformation, Breaking the Phalanx (1997) and Transformation under Fire (2003) have profoundly influenced thinking about transformation inside America’s ground forces.
Ř In the fall of 2001, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld insisted that General “Tommy” Franks and his planning staff meet with Colonel Macgregor on 16-17 January 2002 to discuss a concept for intervention in Iraq involving the use of an armored heavy force of roughly 50,000 troops on two axes in a no warning attack straight into Baghdad followed by the commitment of 15,000 light infantry to control the city once it was taken. The plan assumed that the Iraqi Army and national administrative structures would be retained, assumptions that were subsequently over-turned. Though modified to include extensive air attacks, less armor and far more Army and Marine light infantry in the initial attack, Macgregor’s offensive concept was largely adopted.
Ř In 1991, Macgregor was awarded the bronze star with “V” device for valor for his leadership under fire of combat troops in the 2nd Armored Cavalry Regiment; the lead element of the VII Corps during Desert Storm. Macgregor won notoriety for his personal leadership of the lead cavalry troops from Cougar Squadron that destroyed most of a full-strength Republican Guard Brigade 26 February 1991. This action later became known as the Battle of the 73 Easting, the U.S. Army’s largest tank battle since World War II.
Ř After Desert Storm, Colonel Macgregor commanded the 1st Squadron, 4th Cavalry. Under his command, this unit decisively defeated the Opposing Force (OPFOR) of the National Training Center in four major battles that became the focus of a 1994-1005 RAND study on high performance units. According to observers, the squadron’s performance against the OPFOR was not equaled after November 1993.
Ř In November 1997, Macgregor was assigned to Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE) as the J5, Director of Strategic Planning for the Balkans. In October 1998, Macgregor became the Director of the Joint Operations Center at SHAPE, a position from which he supervised the conduct and planning of operations during the Kosovo Air Campaign with a staff of 240 officers and noncommissioned officers from 19 NATO nations until January 2000.