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Category: Technology & Innovation

April 1, 2017

Information Warfare in an Information Age

In the past week, how many devices have you used that were connected to the Internet or relied on an algorithm to accomplish a task? Likely, the number is upward of 10 to 15, and most of those devices are used daily, if not hourly. Examples may include a Fit-Bit, cell phone, personal computer, work computer, home monitoring system, car, Internet television, printer, scanner, maps, and, if you are really tech savvy, maybe your coffee pot or refrigerator.

April 1, 2017

Operational Graphics for Cyberspace

Symbols have been part of military tactics, operations, and strategy since armies became too large for personal observation on the battlefield. In joint military operations, it is crucial to have a set of common symbols familiar to all users. The inability of cyber warriors to easily express operational concepts inhibits the identification of cyber key terrain, development of tactics and strategies, and execution of command and control.

Dec. 12, 2016

Chapter 8 | Cyber Policy

The effective use of the informational instrument of national power in all domains, and the use of all the instruments of national power in the cyber domain, will be a serious and growing challenge for the United States. The next U.S. President must have a clear understanding of the relationship of technology, law, and policy in formulating options. Centralized but not procrustean, leadership at the highest level, providing a clear and rational delineation of authorities, will be needed to coordinate and effectively employ U.S. cyber and information capabilities. Internationally, engaging with allies and partners will be vital to our defense; engaging with adversaries will require a new understanding of deterrence and counter-espionage in cyberspace. Domestically, new approaches to public-private partnerships will be key to addressing threats, preserving civil liberties, and unleashing our potential for improved governance and expanded commerce.

Oct. 1, 2016

Predicting the Proliferation of Cyber Weapons into Small States

Recent analysis of cyber warfare has been dominated by works focused on the challenges and opportunities it presents to the conventional military dominance of the United States. This was aptly demonstrated by the 2015 assessment from the Director of National Intelligence, who named cyber threats as the number one strategic issue facing the United States.1 Conversely, questions regarding cyber weapons acquisition by small states have received little attention. While individually weak, small states are numerous. They comprise over half the membership of the United Nations and remain important to geopolitical considerations.2 Moreover, these states are facing progressively difficult security investment choices as the balance among global security, regional dominance, and national interests is constantly being assessed. An increasingly relevant factor in these choices is the escalating costs of military platforms and perceptions that cyber warfare may provide a cheap and effective offensive capability to exert strategic influence over geopolitical rivals.

July 12, 2016

Will Technological Convergence Reverse Globalization?

The Economist defines globalization as the “global integration of the movement of goods, capital and jobs,”1 and for decades, the process has been advancing. The combination of labor cost advantages, increasingly efficient freight systems, and trade agreements fueled globalization by providing regional cost advantages for manufacturing. Over the last six decades, it transformed agricultural societies into industrial powerhouses.

July 1, 2016

Twenty-First Century Information Warfare and the Third Offset Strategy

It is well established that both state and nonstate adversaries are gaining parity with current U.S. military-technological capabilities, and as a result adversaries are eroding the tremendous asymmetrical conventional warfare advantages once exclusively enjoyed by U.S. forces. This leveling of the playing field has been enabled through decreased costs of modern information technology and low barriers of entry to attaining precision weapons; stealth capabilities; sophisticated commercial and military command and control (C2) capabilities; advanced intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR); and relatively cheap access to commercial and government-sponsored space and cyber capabilities. As a result, in November 2014, then–Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel announced the Defense Innovation Initiative to counter adversary technical and tactical progress that, if left unchecked, will ultimately hinder U.S. ability to project power across the globe and permanently challenge its aims of retaining its coveted status as a global hegemon. While there are many aspects to this initiative, the Third Offset Strategy, as outlined in policy, does not adequately address the need for advanced information operations (IO), particularly IO wargaming, modeling and simulation (M&S), and training systems. The purpose of this article is to make the case that increasing the investment in joint live, virtual, and constructive (LVC) IO wargaming and simulations will generate lasting asymmetrical advantages for joint force commanders and will significantly contribute to the achievement of the Third Offset Strategy.

July 1, 2016

#SocialMediaMatters: Lessons Learned from Exercise Trident Juncture

Headquarters from the brigade to combatant command levels must understand how to establish credibility and gain popularity through social media if they are to effectively shape the information environment during modern military operations.

March 29, 2016

Cheap Technology Will Challenge U.S. Tactical Dominance

The convergence of dramatic improvements in the fields of robotics, artificial intelligence, materials, additive manufacturing, and nanoenergetics is dramatically changing the character of conflict in all domains. This convergence is creating a massive increase in capabilities available to increasingly smaller political entities—extending even to the individual. This new diffusion of power has major implications for the conduct of warfare, not the least of which are the major hazards or opportunities that it presents to medium and even small powers. The outcome will depend on the paths they choose.

Oct. 1, 2015

Strategic Development of Special Warfare in Cyberspace

How does the United States develop a strategic cyber-enabled special warfare capability? Why are regional powers such as Iran and Russia better prepared for cyber-enabled special warfare operations than the United States?

April 1, 2015

The Defense Innovation Initiative: The Importance of Capability Prototyping

The recently unveiled Defense Innovation Initiative aims to “pursue innovative ways to sustain and advance our military superiority for the 21st Century” by finding “new and creative ways to sustain, and in some areas expand, our advantages even as we deal with more limited resources.”