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The U.S. Army Professional Writing Collection draws from a variety of professional journals that focus on relevant issues affecting The Army. The views expressed are those of the author and do not represent the official position of the Army. This micro-site seeks to stimulate innovative thinking about the challenges that may face tomorrow's Army. It is further intended that the articles featured on this site cause reflection, increased dialogue within the Army Community, and in the best case, action by Soldiers. Updated monthly, these articles are written by Soldiers, civilians, academics, and other subject matter experts. Links to various Army publications, Department of Defense journals and selected non-governmental defense-related publications are also provided on this site.

Marketing: An Overlooked Aspect of Information Operations

Marketing: An Overlooked Aspect of Information OperationsDefeating enemy formations on the €eld of battle is merely the €rst, and often the easiest, phase of a military operation. Ultimate success (accomplishing the political goals of the National Command Authority) hinges on a successful post-high-intensity conict occupation in which the population comes to accept the new state of affairs. In all phases, understanding and inuencing the people is critical to reducing the cost of victory in terms of lives, dollars, and time. The Army has had varying degrees of success over the past 100 years in inuencing the people of opposing nations. In Cuba, the Philippines, the Dominican Republic, Italy, Germany, Japan, Korea, Vietnam, Haiti, Grenada, Panama, Somalia, Bosnia, and Kosovo, we have run the gamut from success to failure. Recognizing the need to win over populations, the Army has begun to emphasize information operations in every deployment. Such operations are one part of the Army’s campaign to achieve information superiority during a conict. Information superiority is “the operational advantage derived from the ability to collect, process, and disseminate an uninterrupted ow of information while exploiting or denying an adversary’s ability to do the same.”

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Winning the Peace The Requirement for Full-Spectrum Operations

Winning the Peace The Requirement for Full-Spectrum OperationsMany people question why a military force is concerned with infrastructure repair, governance, and economic pluralism: why not rely on the state, federal and non-governmental organizations? It comes down to a simple answer of capacity relative to the situation. The U.S. military is built to create secure conditions. But true long-term security does not come from the end of a gun in this culture; it comes from a balanced approach within a robust information operations apparatus. It is easy to advocate a lopsided approach of physical security before infusing projects, economic incentives, and governance for short-term political gain or bureaucratic positioning. But true progress, in the face of an insurgent threat that does not recognize spans of control or legalistic precedence (yet takes advantages of those same inef€ciencies of organizations designed for another era), should be weighed against accomplishing the mission and protecting the force by using a more balanced, full-spectrum, transitional approach. It is time we recognize with renewed clarity the words of President Kennedy, who understood “that few of the important problems of our time have, in the €nal analysis, been €nally solved by military power alone.”


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The Origins of al Qaeda's Ideology: Implications for U.S. Strategy

The Origins of al Qaeda's Ideology: Implications for U.S. StrategyThe leader of Egyptian President Sadat’s assassins, Bin Laden’s chief ideologue, and a leading American neoconservative supporter of Israel all call for a revolutionary transformation of the Middle East. However, the United States, the existing Arab regimes, and the traditional Sunni clerical establishments all share an interest in avoiding instability and revolution. This shared interest makes the establishments in the Sunni world America’s natural partners in the struggle against al Qaeda and similar movements. If American strategists fail to understand and exploit the divide between the establishments and the revolutionaries within Sunni Islam, the United States will play into the radicals’ hands, and turn fence-sitting Sunnis into enemies. In contemporary Western discussions of the Muslim world, it is common to hear calls for a “reformation in Islam” as an antidote to al Qaeda. These calls often betray a misunderstanding of Sunni Islam. In fact, a Sunni “reformation” has been under way for more than a century, and it works against Western security interests.


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Ultramicro, Nonlethal, and Reversible: Looking Ahead to Military Biotechnology

Ultramicro, Nonlethal, and Reversible: Looking Ahead to Military BiotechnologyOur world is undergoing a military revolution characterized by electronics, computers, communications, and microinformation technology. In recent wars, this progress helped reduce casualties, and the desire to cause fewer casualties has become an important factor restricting military operations. Biotechnology is developing quite rapidly and has had an enormous effect on the progress of science and technology, as well as on the global economy. In the field of military affairs, modern biotechnology maintains a rapid pace of development and plays an important role in medical protection. However, it is gradually revealing a character of aggression as well. Therefore, it is of increasing military value. Mainstream science and technology extend from the land to the seas, air, and space. In an age that emphasizes the command of information, we have begun to explore a new technological space. Today, the modern biotechnology that focuses on the microcosmos of the life structure can directly explore the main entity of war—human beings themselves—thus taking precise control of the battle effectiveness of enemies.


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The Current Revolution in the Nature of Conflict

The Current Revolution in the Nature of ConflictThe nature of conflict changes constantly. But every so often the economic, social, political and technological pressures which force that change build up, and the suddenness, the pace, breadth and extent of change reach such a pitch that we can call it a ‘revolution’ rather than evolution. Such revolutions in the nature of conflict include the years 1648 (the peace of Westphalia and the coming-of-age of the nation-state), 1789 (The French Revolution and Napoleonic Wars) and 1914 (the industrialization of warfare). Today, we are currently experiencing just such a revolution in the nature of conflict. The main drivers of today’s revolution in the nature of conflict are: (a) the growing gap between rich and poor countries, (b) the uncontrollable proliferation of technology, and (c) the information explosion. The major source of problems for us in today’s revolution lies in bad governance--the incompetence of governments in weak or failing states, which cannot cope with their internal pressures or resolve local and regional disputes, and our own inability to change our national and international systems of governance to cope with the new challenges.

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