During the road-to-war training process, 1CD held three events in which the HTAT participated: a one-week capstone exercise (CPX), an academics week, and a two-week mission rehearsal exercise (MRX).
During the CPX, the HTAT worked 14 hour days at Fort Hood, Texas as part of the RIFC, informing, educating, and assisting the CJ2 in understanding Eastern Afghanistan, and as part of the greater CJTF-1 staff, integrating, and shaping the processes of governance, development, information operations, and other staff elements.
I contacted COL Hamilton expressing the unit's satisfaction with the HTAT element that had come to the CPX, and expressed the desire for the relationship to continue.
Since there had never been an HTAT in theater these teams may have been concerned that we would try to play a supervisory role.
The leadership model and interaction with the unit served to show how helpful and useful an HTAT could be at Division under the proper conditions.
When the HTAT social scientist left theater after 11 months and the team leader and other team members left four or five months later there was a shuffle of social scientists, team leaders, and other individual replacements, but many of these eventually moved again to other teams.
The early introduction of HTAT to the 4ID was vital to its becoming part of the division staff and mission.
For instance, the G2 developed a detailed set of priority information and commander's critical information requirements that included population centric questions specifically tailored for the HTAT to help answer.
In preparation for Ramadan, a number of HTTs and HTATs provided situational awareness on the religious and cultural significance of Ramadan and its operational significance.
HTATs support echelons above BCT and RCT, integrate into the commander's staff, conduct unclassified open-source and field research, synthesize the information from HTTs deployed with subordinate units, and analyze human terrain information in support of the commander's MDMP.
HTTs and HTATs maintain a geographic and cultural perspective and add a level of consistency and understanding among the Services.
As the Navy and Air Force develop their sociocultural programs, HTS will support their entry into HTT/ HTATs.