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Thread: Winning papers; IO Writing Competition

  1. #1
    Council Member SSG Rock's Avatar
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    Default Winning papers; IO Writing Competition

    I hope this is a good place to dump these. I pulled them from USAIOP, CAC & Fort Leavenworth.

    I've only read the winning paper at this point, but I enjoy reading ideas from the field, I hope the members do as well. These are papers that won the CAC/USAIOP Information Operations Writing Competition.

    Enjoy.

    1. "Muddy Boots IO: The Rise of Soldier Blogs"
    2. "Merging IO and PSYOP"
    3. "The Global Information Environment and Public Opinion in the 5th Dimension"
    4. "The Role of Information Operations Campaigns in Shaping a Political Reality: The American Experience as an Example"
    Don't taze me bro!

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    Thanks, I (for one) look forward to reading each of these.

    Regarding the Rohm piece, I remembered PSYOP as having only one traditional role - effect behavioral change; everything else is secondary.

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    Small Wars Journal SWJED's Avatar
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    Default Very Good Point...

    Quote Originally Posted by ilots View Post
    Thanks, I (for one) look forward to reading each of these.

    Regarding the Rohm piece, I remembered PSYOP as having only one traditional role - effect behavioral change; everything else is secondary.
    In all the recent work I've done re: small wars and urban operations the critical aspect of IO was influence...

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    Default Turf and Pride

    -Obviously Rohm's recommendations were ever applied. One would think under Rummy's watch such a merger would have manifested but I realize it takes being able to talk to the Boss before innovation can be implimented. Turf and pride are assets and hindrance. Civilians have no idea at all of the extreme complexity involved in modern military/defense structures and this is odd because we have a full appreciation of the complexity of large business and other Governmental agencies. Given the appreciation and understanding civilians have for corporate and non-military government complexity, there is an accompanying desire to interact with, assist and even confront said structures and their complexity. I would bet a crisp $100 that not one John Q Civilian ever sent a nasty letter to Rummsfeld demanding a merger of Psyop and IO. Isn't that odd and why is that? Why do civilians avoid/ignore interaction with the US military?

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    Council Member carl's Avatar
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    I would bet a crisp $100 that not one John Q Civilian ever sent a nasty letter to Rummsfeld demanding a merger of Psyop and IO. Isn't that odd and why is that? Why do civilians avoid/ignore interaction with the US military?
    Being a John Q Civilian is one of the few things I am actually qualified to talk about so I will give my opinions.

    It never occured to me to send a letter to Rumsfeld about anything. Most of us flyover people, when we have questions or concerns about the military, send letters to our elected representatives, the senator or congressman. Would a letter to Rumsfeld have had any effect or would that exalted member of the manderinate just blown it off as a grumble from a peasant?

    A merger of Psyop and IO is a pretty arcane point for most of us, important, but not something that would be of primary concern.

    One of the many reasons civilians don't think about these things is simply because so many military bases are remote. In the whole northeast and mid-west how many large bases are there near big cities? The people of Colorado Springs are much more concerned than the people of Indianapolis simply because Ft. Carson is in town.

    One thing I learned here in Africa that I never knew before was the attitude of many well educated Americans toward the military. It is not only one of ignorance but active hostility. This I guess comes from the universities.

    I was talking once with two NGO workers, both with masters degrees, and a British Army officer. The officer was working for the UN at the time and he mentioned that NGO and military organizations could profit by trading information and training. Both the NGO workers got looks of horrified disgust on their faces, only barely concealed. Those looks never left their faces as the officer explained exactly how the NGO's would benefit. I don't think they ever really heard anything he said.

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    Council Member Tom Odom's Avatar
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    Default Attitudes

    I was talking once with two NGO workers, both with masters degrees, and a British Army officer. The officer was working for the UN at the time and he mentioned that NGO and military organizations could profit by trading information and training. Both the NGO workers got looks of horrified disgust on their faces, only barely concealed. Those looks never left their faces as the officer explained exactly how the NGO's would benefit. I don't think they ever really heard anything he said.
    Substitute, Tom Odom, for British officer and the story is the same. That said, I did find UN and National Foreign Aid Organizations relatively easy to work with-especially as they knew I was the guy who could whistle up things like airlift, trucks, and other log support that very few countries and NO NGO could provide.

    Best

    Tom

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    Council Member Stan's Avatar
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    Default Educated Americans with attitudes towards the military

    "One thing I learned here in Africa that I never knew before was the attitude of many well educated Americans toward the military. It is not only one of ignorance but active hostility. This I guess comes from the universities."

    Carl,
    You are in a place that as early as 84 hated us all, especially the AID and Peace Corps. The State pukes are even worse.

    We were then huge (60 plus) and everywhere, our job demanded that. Ten years later (and less than 12 US Military at the embassy) someone would give my boss (then LTC Odom) a whole load of Sierra over being armed and surrounded by 800,000 killers. Hello !

    Yea, the Zširians were doing most of the reputation building and the educated Americans simply associated US with THEM. Green is afterall Green

    After nearly 10 years in Zšire, I realized they did not think of me as one of them, rather an evil that was at times necessary but should be kept locked up til that needed day comes.

    New Subject:
    Do you fly out of N'dolo ? I learned how to fly a Bell Jet Ranger there in 88. OK 62 total hours, but free and fun. Our Kingair was also there before everything else went south.

    Take care, Stan

  8. #8
    Council Member marct's Avatar
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    Default It ain't just Americans....

    Quote Originally Posted by carl View Post
    One thing I learned here in Africa that I never knew before was the attitude of many well educated Americans toward the military. It is not only one of ignorance but active hostility. This I guess comes from the universities.
    Carl, it happens in Canada too <wry grin>. I tell my colleagues I'm interested in Iraq and they go on rants about evil American imperialists . When I was mentioning to a few of my colleagues that I was writing an article for SWJ, the ones I respected were concerned about the impact it would have on my career. The ones I tended not to respect, were shocked that I would have anything to do with the "evil imperialists".

    There is a fundamental misunderstanding in many Western societies - certainly Canada and the US, of just what the military does and is supposed to do. Some of that stems from ignorance, some from malice and some from totally incompatible mind sets. As an academic, my own mind set is different from that of the military <shrug>. Ignorance can be cured - even for academics (we just have to study history... right, Steve?). Incompatible mind sets can be changed so that there are at least points of congruence and mutual respect. Malice is another matter....

    Marc
    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
    http://marctyrrell.com/

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    Quote Originally Posted by carl View Post
    I was talking once with two NGO workers, both with masters degrees, and a British Army officer. The officer was working for the UN at the time and he mentioned that NGO and military organizations could profit by trading information and training. Both the NGO workers got looks of horrified disgust on their faces, only barely concealed. Those looks never left their faces as the officer explained exactly how the NGO's would benefit. I don't think they ever really heard anything he said.
    I currently work for a civilian agency and have been involved in discussions and training with the State Department's Office for Reconstruction and Stabilization. For the NGO and USAID folks this is a very big issue. They believe too much interaction with the military, particularly open/public interaction, puts them at significantly greater risk. In addition, they believe they lose legitimacy among the local population. The U.S. Institute of Peace has a couple of very interesting reports about the PRTs in Afghanistan that really highlight this issue. Here's a link to one of the reports that discusses this issue: http://www.usip.org/pubs/specialreports/sr147.html

    I am not a field person and have no practical experience in this area, but I thought these comments and reports might be of interest.

    Take care,
    Brian
    Last edited by BScully; 02-09-2007 at 09:09 PM.

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