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…
The need for a comprehensive approach to strategy that’s relevant to the global information environment is made clear by recent cyber and information attacks. The Solar Winds and Hafnium attacks from US data centers occurred in a context of persistent disinformation campaigns (Russia, China). Yet the US cyber, info ops and law enforcement communities have…
If strategy means anything, it should have definition and purpose. US strategy toward the current Russia regime, and just about any competitor, continues to be described simplistically as deter and defend.
On March 11th, nearly 70,000 students, faculty and staff at the University of Wisconsin were met with the news that a rapid transition to virtual classroom learning would begin following the scheduled spring break.
COVID-19 is an advanced threat against humanity, requiring a broad-based combination of effects to defeat.
The Department of Defense (DoD) spends much time and effort trying to make sense of the Information Environment (IE). This effort is not new.
In 1983, Project Socrates began as a Reagan initiative to develop technology-driven competitive advantage. Then it ended.
We are well into complex, hybrid, grey zone warfare that dynamically blends confrontation with competition. Victory in the form of relative advantages tends to be temporary, requiring a systematic yet supple all-domains all-effects approach. We have to be able to produce all of types of effects and in superior combinations to compete against other relatively-great powers.
In response to chronic shortcomings, the President, Congress, and senior leaders of our intelligence agencies and service components demand original, prescient and accurate analyses.
Note #8, “Mirror Imaging Iran and the World,” brings strategic culture to the forefront of today’s anxious discussion about how best to coerce Iran into cooperation with international norms.
We tend to mirror image our competitors by using clock-world analogies that apply less and less to today’s cloud-world.
How should the US compete under the restraint of using armed force as a last resort against Iran, a pseudo-democratic theocracy that wages complex warfare in ways the US eschews?
The Iranian regime’s shoot-down of an unmanned, non-stealth, hyper-expensive US reconnaissance aircraft in international airspace today was a highly anticipate-able event.
While teaching sense-making in the information environment, I began to apply previous work on complex warfare strategy in East Asia to other regions. Russia is a critical case — a declining nuclear power using combinations of effects to regain a perceived loss of prestige.