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Old 03-05-2010   #201
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Hi Bill,

Originally Posted by Bill Jakola View Post
FM 5.0 seems to have assumptions of complexity, uncertainty, and continuous change. But letís be clear; this appears as an acknowledgement of the nature of war and not a new aspect of war. War is war. Thus to say the operational environment is complex is not to say that war is more complex, it is just using the inherent complexity as an assumption to build doctrine.
That might have to been the intention of the authors, however that intention is not clearly expressed or presented by using a progressive tense in their verbs - e.g. "is becoming more complex", etc.

With the exception of Wilf who, as we all know is in deep and intimate contact with the Platonic aeon of Ideal Forms (), most of us are unable to make pronouncements about the "nature" of anything. we can talk about "our experience" (individual, institutional, national) of war, but when we start talking about the "nature of war", all we are able to do is map our boundaries characteristics (if we can even do that!). Even if we could a) access the Ideal Form of "war" and were b) able to communicate, then we would still have to say "This is where the current thing we call 'war' differs from the Ideal".

Far better, IMHO, to forget about trying to talk about an Ideal Type and, instead, use doctrine as a way of defining "our" perceptions of the important characteristics of what we a) are doing and b) think we will have to do in the future. Saying that war have become increasingly complex is, in this case, rather silly; far better to say that "we" have to handle more considerations (i.e X, Y and Z) than we did in the past.



ps. This is in light of a general caveat - I'm reading a piece right now that is so conceptually flawed and poorly written that I'm not even sure if it is written in English. By contrast, FM 5.0 is an absolutely brilliant work.

pps. No, Rob, it's not the piece you sent me
Sic Bisquitus Disintegrat...
Marc W.D. Tyrrell, Ph.D.
Institute of Interdisciplinary Studies,
Senior Research Fellow,
The Canadian Centre for Intelligence and Security Studies, NPSIA
Carleton University
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