Massing Effects in the Information Domain:
A Case Study in Aggressive Information Operations
...I say to you: that we are in a battle,
and that more than half of this battle is taking place in the
battlefield of the media. And that we are in a media battle in
a race for the hearts and minds of our Umma.1
-Ayman al-Zawahiri to Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, 9 July 2005 If I were
grading I would say we probably deserve a "D" or a "D-plus"
as a country as to how well we're doing in the battle of ideas
that's taking place in the world today.2
-Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, 27 March 2006
In 1995, the Department of the Army, Forces
Command, and the Training and Doctrine Command began a joint venture
called Force XXI, the focus of which was to understand how information-age
technology could improve the U.S. Army's warfighting capabilities.
While many experiments with information technology and theory were
conducted across the Army, the Task Force XXI (TFXXI) and Division
XXI Advanced Warfighting Experiments (AWE) were the capstone events
of this venture. Over 70 initiatives were reviewed in the TFXXI
AWE, which culminated at Fort Irwin, California, in March 1997 with
the 1st Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division's National Training
At the heart of this experiment was near real-time
location knowledge of friendly units down to individual vehicles
and in some cases, individual Soldiers. The experiment proved that
"Where I am and where my buddies are" is powerful information
for combat leaders. Leaders at all echelons became convinced that
information-age technology would help our Soldiers, leaders, and
formations become much more capable.
Post-AWE, the Army decided to reduce its combat
power in combat and combat support formations by a quarter to afford
the coming technology. However, our Army has not fully exploited
the available technology, especially in the domain of information
and knowledge management operations.
Information Operations (IO) in the AWE
After graduating from the U.S. Army War College
and serving as a division G3, brigade commander, and division chief
of staff, I was assigned to the Training and Doctrine Command with
duty at Fort Hood in the 4th Infantry Division to support the Force
XXI Joint Venture. Although I had no background in information technology
or acquisition experience, I was involved with the preparation,
execution, and after action reviews of the TFXXI AWE and preparation
for the Division XXI AWE. In the summer of 1997, I was assigned
as assistant division commander for support of the 4th Infantry
Division. As I took on this assignment, I was optimistic that the
results of the Division XXI AWE would support what we had learned
with the TFXXI AWE, and that our Army would continue to aggressively
pursue applying information-age technology to improve our warfighting
capabilities. Although I lacked a technical background in information
technology, I was confident that we were only beginning to understand
the potential improvements to warfighting. I believed that funding,
developing, understanding, and maturing these capabilities were
certainly going to be challenging. I was excited about their prospects.
But I was not prepared for the management of information operations
Shortly before the Division XXI AWE, a decision
was made to add an objective to the experiment, focusing attention
on IO. Because the simulation that would drive the Division XXI
AWE was not designed to train this new aspect of warfighting, a
"Green Cell" was established that would inject information
operations events. Major General William S. Wallace, commanding
general of the 4th Infantry Division at that time, gave me the task
to manage this new IO challenge.
I wasted no time gathering all I could find
on the subject of IO and began to study it. At this stage of our
preparations, our standard operating procedures, battle rhythm,
and command post drills were well established. Adding IO at this
late date seemed to be a good idea added too late. Nevertheless,
in the short time available, I learned as much as I could about
the five disciplines which make up our doctrinal IO: psychological
operations (PSYOP), deception, operational security (OPSEC), electronic
warfare (EW), and computer network operations (CNO).
IO's Importance in Iraq
Although I don't think we enhanced the AWE
by adding IO, the opportunity to focus on this new doctrine did
pay dividends 6 years later when, as the commanding general of III
Corps, I found myself preparing the Corps headquarters to deploy
to Operation Iraqi Freedom. Although IO doctrine had not changed
over those 6 years, its importance to a successful campaign in Iraq
and to the Global War on Terrorism was crystal clear to many in
and out of uniform.
On 1 February 2004, III Corps relieved V Corps.
Lieutenant General Ric Sanchez remained the commander of Combined
Joint Task Force-7, and I became his deputy. Over the next 13 months,
5 as Sanchez's deputy and 8 as the commander of Multi-National Corps-Iraq
(MNC-I), my staff, our subordinate units, and I gained a very healthy
respect for IO and knowledge and perception management, primarily
because our enemy was better than we were in operating in the information
domain, certainly in perception management. Although little has
formally changed in our IO doctrine, many leaders, both friend and
foe, understand its awesome power. So why is it that we can't seem
to be the best at IO as we are in so many other areas? Where is
our initiative? Where is our offensive spirit?
In April 2006, with the help of the Battle
Command Training Program (BCTP), III Corps conducted a constructive
simulation to train the headquarters of the 1st Cavalry Division
as it prepared for its potential return to Iraq. As the exercise
director of this Warfighter, I was disappointed at what little progress
we have made in IO. The capabilities to move information not only
around the battlefield but also around the world have grown exponentially,
IO's importance grows daily, and our enemy, who recognizes that
victory can be secured in this domain alone, has seized the opportunity
to be the best at operating in the information domain.
The Green Cell had matured over the 8 years
since the Division XXI AWE, and, although its formal objective for
1st Cav's BCTP Warfighter was to drive IO, it spent little time
in the 5 disciplines of our doctrinal IO. It did, however, spend
very important time in helping Division Headquarters prepare for
the perception of a war it might face in Iraq-regretfully by being
reactive instead of proactive.
I am absolutely convinced that we must approach
IO in a different way and turn it from a passive warfighting discipline
to a very active one. We must learn to employ aggressive IO. We
cannot leave this domain for the enemy; we must fight him on this
battlefield and defeat him there just as we've proven we can on
The Current Information Situation
In an open letter to President George W. Bush
published in the January 2006 issue of the Armed Forces Journal,
Joseph Collins, a former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for
Stability Operations in Bush's administration, predicted that "[i]f
our strategic communications on Iraq don't improve, the strategy
for victory will fail and disastrous consequences will follow."3
We are not consistently achieving synergy and mass in our strategic
communications (consisting of IO, public affairs [PA], public diplomacy,
and military diplomacy) from the strategic to the tactical level,
but blaming the IO component for the overall situation is too convenient
and too narrow. The perception that IO should shoulder the blame
is based on expectations that are beyond the doctrinal charter or
operational capabilities of IO as currently resourced. The collective
belief is that we lack the necessary skills, resources, and guidance
to synchronize IO in order to achieve tangible effects on the battlefield.
Further complicating our efforts in the information
domain is the fact that we are facing an adaptive, relentless, and
technologically savvy foe who recognizes that the global information
network is his most effective tool for attacking what he perceives
to be our center of gravity: public opinion, both domestic and international.
And the truth of the matter is that our enemy is better at integrating
information-based operations, primarily through mass media, into
his operations than we are. In some respects, we seem tied to our
legacy doctrine and less than completely resolved to cope with the
benefits and challenges of information globalization. We are too
wedded to procedures that are anchored in the Cold War-Industrial
Nevertheless, there appears to be an emerging
recognition among warfighters that a broader and more aggressive,
comprehensive, and holistic approach to IO-an approach that recognizes
the challenges of the global information environment and seamlessly
integrates the functions of traditional IO and PA-is required to
succeed on the information-age battlefield. Furthermore, a clear
need exists for strategic and operational commanders to become as
aggressive and as offensive-minded with information operations as
they have always been with other elements of combat power and warfighting
functions-movement and maneuver, fire support, intelligence, and
so on. Given the follow-on successes of XVIII Airborne Corps and
the current success of V Corps, we are clearly making progress,
but we still have much to do to ingrain these advances into the
Examples abound where we have failed to mass
effects and leverage all of the available tools in the information
domain; likewise, we have examples where we have effectively bridged
the gap between IO and PA to achieve integrated full-spectrum effects.
Comparing Operation Vigilant Resolve and Operation Al-Fajr clearly
illustrates the power of an aggressive, holistic approach to integrating
IO into the battle plan. A careful study of IO in support of Operation
Al-Fajr suggests three imperatives for the future of full-spectrum
-The successful massing of information effects
requires the commander to clearly articulate his intent for the
integration of all the available elements of operations in the information
domain into the battle plan.
-The successful massing of information effects
requires precise and disciplined execution from shaping operations
-Commanders at all echelons must, at present,
serve as the bridge across the doctrinal gap between IO and PA in
order to synchronize efforts in the information domain. Only in
this way will the intended effect be achieved.
In April 2004, in response to the murder and
desecration of Blackwater contractors in Fallujah, Coalition forces
led by the I Marine Expeditionary Force (I MEF) launched Operation
Vigilant Resolve, an assault to restore control of Fallujah. In
spite of the superior combat power of I MEF-in leadership, movement
and maneuver, and fire support-the operation failed because operations
in the information domain were not integrated into the battle plan;
in effect, we failed to give the warfighter-on-the-ground the best
opportunity to achieve a decisive victory. Steps to prepare the
information battlefield, including engaging numerous and varied
Iraqi leaders, removing enemy information centers, and rapidly disseminating
information from the battlefield to worldwide media were not woven
into the plan.
U.S. forces unilaterally halted combat operations
after a few days due to lack of support from the Interim Iraqi Government
and international pressures amid media focus on unsubstantiated
enemy reports of collateral damage and excessive force. Marines
won virtually every combat engagement throughout the battle and
did so within the established rules of engagement. The missing element
was an overall integrated information component to gain widespread
support of significant influencers and to prepare key publics for
the realities of the battle plan. Without such advance support,
the finest combat plan executed by competent and brave Soldiers
and Marines proved limited in effectiveness. The insurgent forces
established links with regional and global media outlets that had
agendas of their own. Our failure to mass effects in the global
information sphere proved decisive on the battleground in Fallujah.4
Raising the IO Threshold
As the summer of 2004 passed and the Fallujah
brigade experiment failed, it became imperative that the city's
festering insurgent safe haven had to be removed. Planning for Operation
Al-Fajr, an assault to decisively clear Fallujah of insurgent activity,
was initiated. A key task for MNC-I planners was to ensure that
the information defeat of Vigilant Resolve was not repeated in Operation
Al-Fajr. Accordingly, we focused our planning to avoid replication
of Vigilant Resolve and to prevent the worldwide media clamor and
international public condemnation that would negatively impact operations.
To articulate a clear intent in the information
domain, we developed what we called "the IO threshold."
Its purpose was to enable the MNC-I commander to visualize a point
at which enemy information-based operations (aimed at international,
regional, and local media coverage) began to undermine the Coalition
forces' ability to conduct unconstrained combat operations. As Operation
Vigilant Resolve proved, the enemy understands the idea of an IO
threshold. He is capable of effectively using the global media to
impede our operations by creating the perception that our combat
operations are indiscriminate, disproportionate, and in violation
of the rules of war.
Using the commander's intent for massed effects
in the information domain as expressed in terms of the IO threshold,
we illustrated to our subordinate commanders that kinetic shaping
operations had to be conducted underneath the IO threshold; that
is, we couldn't remove a city block to prepare the battlefield because
such an act could create negative effects in the information domain.
Any resulting negative international and local media coverage could
impair the conduct of the overall campaign, as had happened during
Operation Vigilant Resolve.
We used the same concept to brief the operation
to Multi-National Force-Iraq (MNF-I) commander General George Casey
and to convince him that when I MEF executed the decisive operation,
crossing the IO threshold could not distract us from our tactical
and operational objectives. Once across the threshold, we planned
for success to be achieved in days and hours.
Using this intent as a guideline, MNF-I, MNC-I,
and Multi-National Force-West (MNF-W) developed courses of action
to mass effects in the information domain, thereby raising the IO
threshold and creating additional "maneuver" room for
combat operations in Fallujah. We deliberately countered enemy information
campaigning, planned and executed IO shaping operations, and executed
carefully planned senior leader engagements, military diplomacy,
and public diplomacy activities. As a result of these synchronized,
integrated, and complementary actions, we were able to mass information
effects and build a strong base of support for combat operations
in advance of the operation; in other words, we were able to raise
the IO threshold by preparing key influencers and agencies for the
This offensive mindset and aggressive massing
of effects resulted in two additional complementary effects: first,
MNC-I placed additional pressure on the enemy throughout Iraq through
the elimination of widespread support for his activities; second,
decisionmakers were prepared for the pending operation and given
the necessary information to prepare their constituencies for the
IO in Operation Al-Fajr
As with other operations, massing effects in
the information domain requires disciplined execution by leaders,
Soldiers, and staffs at all echelons. In Operation Al-Fajr, this
meant precise, painstaking execution of all the core elements of
traditional IO as well as other elements of combat power that had
information implications. Doctrinal IO-PSYOP, deception, OPSEC,
EW, and CNO-played a significant role in our shaping operations.
Fallujah became a textbook case for the coordination and use of
the core elements of IO capabilities in support of the tactical
Deception and OPSEC. MNF-I, MNC-I, and MNF-W
used deception and OPSEC to conceal our buildup of forces north
of Fallujah. We attempted to focus the enemy's attention on the
south by constant and aggressive patrolling and feints from the
south while simultaneously executing precision strikes in the southern
parts of the city. Movement by the British Black Watch Battle Group
and employment of a very maneuverable brigade combat team in a dynamic
cordon also aided in this effort.
PSYOP. MNC-I conducted very effective PSYOP
encouraging noncombatants to leave the city and persuading insurgents
to surrender. These doctrinal psychological operations might have
been the most important aspect of our operations to defeat the enemy
in Fallujah, as some estimates showed that 90 percent of the noncombatants
departed the city.
Electronic warfare. MNC-I and MNF-W also controlled
the enemy's communications capabilities by restricting his access
to select communications and not only denying the enemy a means
to communicate but also directing him to a means that we could monitor.
Computer network operations. Although we cannot
discuss operations in this realm here, we must not allow the enemy
to win the battle in cyberspace.
The massing of information effects in Al-Fajr
was also apparent in the incorporation of information considerations
into the application of other elements of combat power. The seizure
of the Fallujah hospital by Iraqi commandos during the early stages
of the battle provides an excellent example of the integration of
full-spectrum planning, rehearsing, and execution of IO in support
of overall campaign objectives. During the military decision-making
process, MNF-W identified a piece of key IO terrain that it believed
had to be secured early in the operation to begin eliminating the
enemy's ability to disseminate misinformation and propaganda. The
Fallujah hospital had long been used as a propaganda organ by insurgent
forces and had been one of the most significant sources of enemy
information during Operation Vigilant Resolve. By securing this
key IO terrain, MNF-W could significantly disrupt the enemy's access
point to disseminate information.
The Iraqi 36th Commando Battalion captured
the Fallujah hospital in the first major combat operation of Al-Fajr.
Documented by CBS reporter Kirk Spitzer, this operation established
Coalition control of the enemy propaganda platform while building
the legitimacy of the Iraqi Security Forces as well as the Interim
Iraqi Government. Although this small attack garnered only a footnote
in history, it was decisive to winning the IO battle: Without this
portal, the enemy had a much weaker voice.
Bridging the IO-PA firewall. In order to mass
effects in the information domain and effectively integrate IO into
the battle plan, the warfighter must find a way to bridge the doctrinal
firewall separating IO and PA without violating the rules governing
both. This firewall is essential to ensuring PSYOP, Deception Operations,
EW, and CNO do not migrate into PA and discredit the PA effort.
We need to be proud of our values and be prepared to underwrite
the risk that we will expose too much in the service of transparency;
this is counterbalanced with an implicit trust that our values and
the truth will eventually prevail. Truth and transparency are strengths
and not hindrances. Truth and transparency in PA are the military's
legal obligation, and they also reinforce the effectiveness of our
IO by providing a trusted source of information to domestic and
international media. Providing information is only effective in
the long run if the information is truthful and squares with the
realities faced by its recipients.
The challenge is getting the truth out first,
in an appealing package, before the enemy does. Timing is critical.
Furthermore, we must recognize that the current global media gravitates
toward information that is packaged for ease of dissemination and
consumption; the media will favor a timely, complete story. As an
aside, the enemy knows this, but he is not encumbered by the truth
or regulations, which makes our challenge that much harder.
As our main force entered Fallujah from the
north (which the enemy did not expect until 2,000-pound precision
weapons breached the railway berm and the main attack launched),
they did so with guidance-
-To be prepared to execute actions specifically
tailored to capture photographic documentation of insurgent activities
-To pass that information quickly up the chain
to MNC-I, which would then turn that documentation into products
that could be disseminated by the Iraqi Government and our PA elements.
Specific guidance was handed down to key elements
to develop bite-sized vignettes with graphics and clear storylines.5
An example of massing effects, this small component of the battle
enabled the Coalition to get its story out first and thereby dominate
the information domain. Figure 2 is an example of this type of product:
MNC-I used information from combat forces to construct a document
that illustrated insurgent atrocities discovered in Fallujah. To
borrow a football analogy, MNC-I flooded the zone with images and
stories that the media could-and did-use.
The PAO and other staff sections can use information
gathered from external sources. For example, the 1st Cavalry Division,
operating as Task Force Baghdad, used information gained from multiple
sources to create a product for public distribution. On the eve
of the January 2005 election, insurgents attacked the U.S. Embassy
with rockets and killed embassy personnel. Media outlets fixated
on the event. Some media coverage initially focused on the Coalition's
inability to stop the insurgents even in the most secure areas.
Even though the truth of the matter was that the insurgents had
no targeting capability and had merely struck the building through
luck, the storyline still had resonance.
What the insurgents did not know was that the
image of the rocket-firing was captured by an unmanned aerial vehicle
(UAV). Through the UAV, analysts saw the group assemble and fire
the weapon, and then tracked their movement. Coalition forces moved
to a house where the insurgents reassembled following the firing
and detained most of those who had participated.
The Division simultaneously recorded the event,
and the recording was quickly taken to the public affairs officer
and edited for delivery to media. The product showed the rocket
firing, the attempted escape from the area by the insurgents, and
their capture. Using the relatively new capability for posting such
items to a publicly accessible webpage via the Digital Video and
Imagery Distribution System (DVIDS), the Division alerted the media
to its availability.6 Media outlets
downloaded the product, and the storyline in the media shifted from
the Coalition's inability to stop insurgent activity to how successful
the Coalition was in detaining the insurgents.
Was this PA or IO? Developing a packaged product
for dissemination might appear more like IO than PA, but it was
clearly a PA action to utilize the DVIDS' capability. No media outlet
could have collected this information independently. The PAO is
charged by the commander to determine how best to provide information
about the conduct of operations within the construct of doctrine
and law. Surely, close cooperation with IO officers fits within
doctrinal and legal parameters. Of course, such work should be done
in conjunction with standard embedding of reporters and the provision
of senior-leader access to the media as often as possible. First-hand
reporting by reporters from commercial outlets is indispensable
to commanders seeking transparency; in fact, embedded reporters
were critically important in the media coverage of Operation Al-Fajr:
Over 80 embedded reporters worked with MNF-W during combat operations.
In reality, these two vignettes (Al-Fajr and
the embassy attack) are clear examples of how we can mass effects
in the information domain by leveraging all available tools. The
1st Cav PAO decided to use available technology to deliver a clearer
public message about the course of events. Why shouldn't we use
our situational awareness technology and network-centric warfare
to give us an asymmetric advantage over our enemies? In Fallujah,
when enemy forces used a mosque, a minaret, or some other protected
site as a sniper position, the rules of engagement rightfully-and
legally-enabled our Soldiers and leaders to engage with lethal force.
We must have the agility to use our technological advantage, too,
so that as a main gun round moves downrange to destroy a sniper
position, simultaneously the digital image of the sniper violating
the rules of war, plus the necessary information to create the packaged
product, can be transmitted for dissemination to the news media.
Implications for the Future
The big issue in our world is whether our
doctrine and our policy are up to date. We owe more thinking to
the combatant commanders. What are the things that should be balanced
when you look at information and communications issues?7
-Lawrence Di Rita
MNF-I, MNC-I and MNF-W were successful in massing
effects in the information domain in Operation Al-Fajr for three
reasons: We articulated an achievable end-state; we took pains to
integrate, synchronize, and execute with discipline all of the elements
of combat power (leadership, movement and maneuver, intelligence)
and all of the tools available in the information domain (traditional
IO, PA, engagement, and political actions); and we were able to
effectively bridge the firewall between IO and PA to achieve our
desired end-state without violating the rules of either discipline.
This integration has broader implications.
We must consider how tactical actions will influence the operational
and strategic levels. Because of its failure to influence important
audiences, Operation Vigilant Resolve offers a cautionary tale for
anyone who would downplay the significance of information in modern
If general expectations are that we should
be able to compete and win the information battle in the global
media environment-and this appears to be the general perception
within our Army-then we must reshape our doctrine and develop ways
to train in the new domains, ways that will evolve as the Information
Age evolves. We should restructure the definitions of IO and PA
and the relationship between them and develop a considerable global
mass-marketing and public-relations capability. There is no other
option because "winning modern wars is as much dependent on
carrying domestic and international public opinion as it is on defeating
the enemy on the battlefield."8
This idea is not without controversy. The recent
debate in the media concerning the use of the Lincoln Group to push
written opinion-editorials to Iraqi news outlets by paying for their
placement illustrates that there are no clean lines in this discussion.
Despite this situation, innovation and the use of new techniques
will help us win future campaigns. The new reality simply will not
enable Cold War methods to figuratively outgun technologically able
enemies unfettered by cumbersome processes for dissemination of
In an article published in the New York Times
on 22 March 2006, Lawrence Di Rita, co-director of a Pentagon panel
studying communications questions for the Quadrennial Defense Review,
said Rumsfeld and other senior officials were considering new policies
for regional combatant commanders. Di Rita noted that "[t]he
big issue in our world is whether our doctrine and our policy are
up to date. We owe more thinking to the combatant commanders."9
Massing of effects in the information domain
can be achieved, as evidenced by Operation Al-Fajr. Functional progress
within the realms of the communications professions (IO and PA)
requires that we accommodate to the globalization of information.
After III Corps departed and XVIII Airborne Corps took over as the
new MNC-I in early 2005, it remained (and remains) clear that in
Iraq our U.S. and Coalition partners have inculcated the lessons
of Vigilant Resolve and Al-Fajr.
We must address the challenges an interconnected
global media/communications environment and its processes pose to
our information-related operations, an environment in which timely
and fully packaged stories are far more valuable than mere imagery.
While acknowledging continued greater levels of globalization, we
must be able to harness all of the elements of national power in
an integrated manner. Doing so is absolutely critical if the United
States is to successfully defend itself. Failure to do so could
In the weeks leading up to the historic January
2005 elections in Iraq, we in the Multi-National Corps-Iraq (MNC-I)
Public Affairs Office had developed a comprehensive plan to publicize
important aspects of pre-election preparations together with whatever
events might unfold during that historically important day. Part
of that plan included having obtained clearance to have Fox news
reporter Geraldo Rivera cover events from the command's Joint Operations
Center in Baghdad. During the preparation phase of this plan, we
arranged for Rivera to visit several units "outside the wire,"
including accompanying mounted and dismounted patrols in Mosul.
This preparation phase culminated with us dropping him off in Tikrit
two days prior to the election for a final sensing of the Iraqi
However, on the evening just prior to the election,
the MNC-I chief of staff called me in to inform me that higher headquarters
had made a last-minute decision not to permit interviews with MNC-I
forces on election day. this was a stunning development owing to
the many commitments we had made to the media. Fortunately, we were
able to negotiate a modification to the guidance that permitted
interviews with battalion and lower level elements. However, we
were unable to clear media access for interviews at HQ MNC-I. This
placed us in a very difficult position with Rivera, potentially
putting him and his network in a bad position at virtually the last
minute and compromising our ability to show an immensely important
dimension of what we believed was going to be a great and vitally
Both concerns weighed heavily on me as we scrambled
to find alternatives. I viewed the situation as a matter of honor,
believing that the broken commitment could easily be perceived as
a betrayal of trust. The anxiety apparently showed on my face as
I went to the helipad the next day to meet Rivera coming from Tikrit.
As Rivera saw me walk towards him, he asked me what was wrong. I
paused, and then said: "Geraldo I've got some bad news."
His chin dropped, his face became tensely serious,
and his eyes narrowed with concern. He said: "What's wrong-what
"Well," I began, "though I know
that we committed to support your coverage of the election from
here, for reasons I am not at liberty to explain, we have to cancel
your access to the MNC-I operations center."
At that point, his eyes opened, his face regained
its composure, and he let out a gasp of relief. He then grabbed
my head and, with his hand behind my neck, placed his forehead on
my forehead-skin to skin-and said: "Is that all?" Continuing,
he said, "Man, you had me worried. I thought you were going
to tell me another helicopter with troops was shot down or something
like that-Man, am I relieved." After briefly discussing our
efforts to find alternative ways to cover the election, he then
said, "Don't sweat it-this is just bureaucratic B.S. -we'll
figure something out."
As it turned out, the 1st Cavalry Division's
public affairs officer, LTC James Hutton, was able to set up a visually
rich opportunity at a police station in Saba Al Boor, supported
by the 256th enhanced separate Brigade of the Louisiana National
Guard. Ironically, the change of venue resulted in some of the most
dramatic and famous coverage of election day. Rivera reported from
polling stations and featured the work of the soldiers of the 256th,
who demonstrated the great effort that had gone into making the
election a resounding success.
Subsequently, Rivera continued to provide some
of the most consistently comprehensive, informed, and accurate reporting
that we saw during III Corps' entire tour in Iraq.
Editor's note: the above anecdote was solicited
by the editor, Military Review, from the Public Affairs Officer,
COL Dan Baggio, who served under LTG Metz in Iraq during the period
encompassing the first Iraqi election.
1. Ayman al-Zawahiri, intercepted
letter to Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, 9 July 2005, on-line at <www.dni.gov/letter_in_english.pdf>,
accessed 26 April 2006.
2. Secretary of Defense
Donald Rumsfeld, in response to a question after a speech at the
Army War College, Carlisle Barracks, PA, 27 March 2006.
3. Joseph J. Collins,
"An Open Letter to President Bush," Armed Forces Journal
143, no. 6 (January 2006): 28, on-line at <http://www.armedforcesjournal.com/story.
php?F=1403423_0106>, accessed 1 May 2006.
4. Ralph Peters, "The
Counterrevolution in Military Affairs-Fashionable thinking about
defense ignores the great threats of our time," The Weekly
Standard, volume 11, 2, 6 February 2006.
5. LTG Thomas F. Metz,
"The Battle of Fallujah: A Case Study for Warfare in the Information
Age," briefing to the Capitol Bohemian Club, 26 October 2005,
6. The Digital Video
and Imagery Distribution System (DVIDS) feeds a signal from a portable
machine to a satellite. News stations can pull the signal from the
DVIDS website either live or from stored data on the site. It was
first used in Iraq in 2004.
7. Thom Shanker, "No
Breach Seen in Work in Iraq on Propaganda," New York Times,
22 March 2006.
8. Kenneth Payne, "The
Media as an Instrument of War," Parameters 35, 1 (spring 2005):
81, on-line at < http://www.carlisle.army.mil/usawc/Parameters/05spring/payne.
htm>, accessed 1 May 2006.
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