The hidden fault
This post was sent my Friedrich. He was an officer on one of our allies' special operation forces.
A few years back, we were deployed together with the Americans. Word came down the chain of command about insurgents in an area that has previously been cleared and a new plan of action was needed to help bring quiet to that area again. We were told to make a plan and show it to the Americans. We needed to work together in this and their commaning officer had control.
After a few days of working together with the senior enlisted men, the intel officers and some local assets, we had something we thought was a good plan. Not too complicated but called for the different parts to work simultaneously in the different AOs.
We prepared the Powerpoint and our senior enlisted guy and I went to present it to the Americans. The first thing they asked us was whether we ran this by the Red Team. So, I asked: what Red Team?
Well, it turned out that a civilian Red Team was contracted to help with some planning for the Americans and they (the Americans) like the way the plans and tactics were attacked by this Red Team, so they wanted our plan to be tested too.
I said OK and I went looking for this Red Team. They were located on a tent next to the intel shop. Their TOC was simple but very busy. I introduced myself and the guy running the Red Team introduced himself and the team to me. We sat and for the next 2 days we worked together on the plan. They would "attack it" and we would provide a better solution. They would talk about an alternative method to certain pieces of the plan that made a lot of sense, so in those cases we combined their ideas with ours.
After 48 hours, I have to admit the plan looked very good. They showed us possible problems that we didn't account for, hidden faults that needed to be extracted. But not in a negative way, no. You could see that they were trying really hard to see this from the side of the insurgents, and well, actually from all sides. Even our own side was going to have problems (mostly on the chain of command comms) if parts of the plan were not clarified better.
Overall we were very impressed, and after the rotation was over I discussed this with my commanding officer. I am happy to say that a Red Team is part of our planning too now.