Paper #52. Beyond Doctrinal Plug-Ins: Integrate IO to Win Complex Wars

  • Thomas A. Drohan, Ph.D., Brig Gen USAF ret.
  • Security, Strategy
  • No Comments

Winning complex wars requires setting more than military end states. Information-heavy complex problems (ICP’s) in hyper-connected environments can persist for generations (Ehlers and Blannin, Campaigning for Complex Problems). These problem sets require enduring social efforts and information-led operations such as narrative warfare. As in Ukraine and Taiwan, the perpetual fight is to get an adversary to…

Paper #48. Supply Chain Networks in the Age of AI, Part I: Fixing Joint Doctrine

  • Thomas A. Drohan, Ph.D., Brig Gen USAF ret.
  • Cyber, Leadership, Strategy
  • No Comments

This paper is Part I of II that defines and applies information environment concepts to supply chain networks for an age of artificial intelligence (AI).  To avoid overtrained learning, I draw from supply chain examples and beyond.[i] Part I fixes two fundamental flaws in joint military doctrine: (1) the failure to define the information environment…

Note #23. Net Assessment and JADC2: A Step Toward All-Effects Warfare?

  • Thomas A. Drohan, Ph.D., Brig Gen USAF ret.
  • Asia-Pacific, Cyber, Eurasia, Strategy
  • No Comments

Net Assessment The purpose of net assessment is to gain an asymmetric advantage over competitors. US goals generally seek technological superiority. The US Office of Net Assessment, in a rare run of leadership continuity (Andy Marshall, 1973-2015), analyzed strategic competitions and recommended offsets against adversary strengths. Some offsets threatened the mutual vulnerability of Mutual Assured…

Paper #45. AI-assisted Psychological Strategies: Human-directed Critical Thinking to Disarm Theocratic Strategy

  • Thomas A. Drohan, Ph.D., Brig Gen USAF ret.
  • Cyber, Leadership, Middle East & North Africa, Security, Strategy
  • No Comments

This article completes our series on AI-assisted strategy, but with a stronger emphasis on combined effects. I use the language of combined effects strategy. Combined effects strategy is a broader alternative to the prevailing paradigm of combined arms that dominates failed US security strategy. Unlike papers #42 and #43 that focused on either cooperative or…

Paper #44. China’s Belt and Road Initiative as Combined-Effect Strategy: How Democracies Can Compete

  • Thomas A. Drohan, Ph.D., Brig Gen USAF ret.
  • Asia-Pacific, Leadership, Security, Strategy
  • No Comments

ICSL Paper #41 developed “concepts of influence,” a critical component to effective strategy. Concepts of influence are the ways and means that act on will and capability to bring about the ends of strategy. They may be entirely human-created or assisted or created by artificial intelligence. This paper applies concepts of influence to show how…

Paper #41. Concepts of Influence: Critical to Strategy and Human Control of Artificial Intelligence

  • Thomas A. Drohan, Ph.D., Brig Gen USAF ret.
  • Cyber, Leadership, Strategy
  • No Comments

Strategy for dynamic end-states must be multi-dimensional to be competitive in the information environment (ICSL Note #22). If operations are not informing and influencing, they become existential rather than instrumental. They justify themselves, which makes for poor strategy. Yet strategy is the competition that matters most for relevant operations. As we consider the three basic…

Paper #39. Information Intelligence & Assessment for All-Effects Warfare: A Competition that Subsumes Combined Arms & Deterrence

  • Thomas A. Drohan, Ph.D., Brig Gen USAF ret.
  • Leadership, Security, Strategy
  • No Comments

Our previous paper offered an assessable definition of “information“ to address two persistent problems in US security strategy: (1) the mismatch between narrow military doctrine and its broad effects; and (2) a “competition continuum“ below armed conflict. Why does this matter? The Information Environment is expansive, accessible and dynamic, characteristics that enable competitors to exploit…

Paper #35. What Might Military Operations Learn From Google? In Africa

  • Thomas A. Drohan, Ph.D., Brig Gen USAF ret.
  • Cyber, Strategy, Sub-Saharan Africa
  • No Comments

Military operations must be prepared to conduct  so-called “great power competition” as well as big and small wars just as complex. In all cases, we need to implement superior strategy to defeat clever competitors. 

Paper #34. Cyber Security-Resilience: Compliance & Competitiveness in the Information Environment

  • Thomas A. Drohan, Ph.D., Brig Gen USAF ret.
  • Commercial, Cyber, Security, Strategy
  • No Comments

Manipulating information over cyber networks has become a societal weapon of choice. Compared to traditional military, diplomatic and economic instruments of state power, cyber information power has competitive advantages. 

Paper #23. Collapsing the Loop: How China’s Narrative Subverts OODA Decision-making & What to Do About It

  • Thomas A. Drohan, Ph.D., Brig Gen USAF ret.
  • Asia-Pacific, Cyber, Strategy
  • No Comments

Colonel John Boyd’s OODA Loop—Observe, Orient, Decide, and Act— is a powerful model for making decisions in contested environments. Strategic use of information can defeat it. Understanding narrative strategies can protect it.

Note #14. Machine-learning a Video: “The Corona Virus and the Impact on the Global Supply Chain”

  • Thomas A. Drohan, Ph.D., Brig Gen USAF ret.
  • Commercial, Leadership, Strategy
  • No Comments

This Note uses critical thinking to analyze complex linkages in a YouTube video from the MIT Center for Transportation and Logistics: The Corona Virus and the Impact on the Global Supply Chain.

Teaching & Learning #3. Visual Analytics & Case Method Applied to COVID-19

  • Thomas A. Drohan, Ph.D., Brig Gen USAF ret.
  • Teaching & Learning, With Blackboard & Map
  • No Comments

In an age of artificial intelligence and quantum computing, governments and businesses become more dependent on machine learning. Human learning is a continual requirement.

Paper #12. Time to Recreate Effective Competitive Advantage: Strategy, Technology and Information

  • Thomas A. Drohan, Ph.D., Brig Gen USAF ret.
  • Commercial, Leadership, Strategy
  • No Comments

In 1983, Project Socrates began as a Reagan initiative to develop technology-driven competitive advantage. Then it ended.