Sunday, May 21, 2006

Deployment (From Hell)

The EBO-related posts generated some response among other bloggers. I'll respond o their critiques when I get a chance. Right now, my priority is to get ready for the 6-month deployment. After completing quite a bit of training and paperwork, I finally depart tomorrow. Six months away from "home". I put home under quotations because I just got to Virginia last year and have been on the road for a long time ever since. I want to say this have been, so far, the deployment order from hell, but that will be whining. Let's say, that it has been the "flexibility is the key to airpower" deployment order. First, they tell me is 4 months then, last month they tell me is 6 months. The location has changed twice. The job description I originally received turned out to be bogus (or so I heard from the dude I'm replacing). I'll find out when I get there, I guess. I am ready to get out of here, though. This is where teleportation will come in handy. I take off tomorrow and will arrive (if I'm lucky) on Wednesday. I'll try to post while out there, however, my main focus for the next weeks will be adapting to my new environment and learning my "new" job. I won't go into any of the other buffooneries, right now. The word "friction" comes to mind. To quote one of my (sadistic) NCOs: "The pleasure is in the pain." Good words to live by.

Special thanks to blogger buds Mark from Zenpundit and Eddie from Live from the FDNF for calling attention to my humble writings.

Please read critiques to my EBO posts from Kingdaddy at Arms and Influence and Robert Farley at Lawyers, Guns and Money, which BTW happens to be three of the four things that got me in trouble last time I went to Vegas. I'll respond to both critiques after I get myself situated. Part 3 of In Defense of EBO is still coming. Needless to say, like Ralph Peters, neither one of them offer an alternative to EBO beyond an attrition-based warfare approach, or what I call the "only-killing-win-wars" approach. Killing is undoubtedly part of warfare, but like I've said before, a strategy that consists of only killing "bad guys" is essentially the absence of strategy.

I've also been readind about Dan's trip to China on tdaxp. I envy the guy. I am actually planning a trip to Asia next year. It was originally semi-planned for this fall, but I had to changed my plans. God (and Uncle Sam) had other plans for me, I guess. I suspect that the Chinese will put together a folder on me as soon as I send my visa application though. I am eagerly awaiting the mega OODA Loop series promised by Dan before the China adventure. Will it top Dan's piece de resistance "Globalization Is Water - The Magic Cloud"? I sure hope so.

Also reading Curtis at Phatic Communion and his resilience- and Gap-related posts.

Here's some preliminary writings of ideas that I will expand upon in the near future:

The object of warfare is to affect our adversaries’ decisions and have him act according to our strategic interests; in the words of Clausewitz, war is “an act of force to compel our enemy to do our will.” Colonel John Boyd speaks of folding an opponent back inside himself by operating inside his observation-orientation-decision-action (OODA) loop. When we operate inside our adversaries’ OODA loop, we come into their view in ambiguous and unpredictable form, thereby producing confusion and entropy among them. As Boyd describes it in “Destruction and Creation”: “High entropy implies a low potential for doing work, a low capacity for taking action or a high degree of confusion and disorder.” An effects-based approach to operations emphasizes the use of synchronized sets of actions that include all aspects of military and other national power that might shape the decisions not only of our adversaries, but also the decisions of friends and neutrals.

Effects Defined

Effects consist of a full spectrum of outcomes, events, or consequences that result from a particular action. An effects based approach to operations stresses the value of connecting all actions (political, diplomatic, economic, and military) to operational and strategic outcomes. In the most basic sense, effects-based operations are planned, executed, assessed, and adapted to influence or change systems or capabilities in order to achieve desired outcomes. The three essential features of effects-based operations (EBO)—planning, employment, and assessment—cannot be separated from one another.

Origins: The Revolt of the Warfighters

Effects-based operations are not new, however, one can trace the current incarnation of the movement to the war experiences of young Air Force officers who were dismayed by the often senseless and ineffective use of airpower in Vietnam. When their turn to lead came, they were determined to do better. Their turn came when Iraqi forces invaded Kuwait in 1990. The planners on the U.S. Central Command’s (USCENTCOM) “Black Hole” air component planning team which was tasked with developing strategic targets during the Persian Gulf War developed an air campaign to achieve an “effect” on specific Iraqi systems that if removed from Iraqi control, would enable USCENTCOM to achieve its objectives and thus allow the U.S. and its allies to achieve their strategic goals.

Engagement Processes

There is a force application process that prescribes attacking multiple, vital targets simultaneously in an attempt to collapse an adversary’s system, and therefore leaving him with no means to respond, and, when he does respond, he does so in a manner that is favorable to us. If we think beyond merely “servicing” targets – the “only killing wins wars” mentality- and begin to think in terms of desired effects, this “kinetic option” becomes only one of the many options that are part of our range as warfighters.

EBO is an evolutionary idea that does not invalidate the customary notions of annihilation or attrition, but widens the options available to a commander.

piece de resistance? wow. i never knew the purpose of tdaxp was the promulgation of the magic cloud before :-)

Variations of the OODA Looop is considerably dryer than Magic Cloud. Essentially Variations is a long literature review. It goes over how the OODA loop has been defined, without giving new theory.

Hope that's not too disappointing :-)
The missing element in every human 'solution' is
an accurate definition of the creature.

The way we define 'human' determines our view
of self, others, relationships, institutions, life, and
future. Important? Only the Creator who made us
in His own image is qualified to define us accurately.

Many problems in human experience are the result of
false and inaccurate definitions of humankind premised
in man-made religions and humanistic philosophies.

Human knowledge is a fraction of the whole universe.
The balance is a vast void of human ignorance. Human
reason cannot fully function in such a void; thus, the
intellect can rise no higher than the criteria by which it
perceives and measures values.

Humanism makes man his own standard of measure.
However, as with all measuring systems, a standard
must be greater than the value measured. Based on
preponderant ignorance and an egocentric carnal
nature, humanism demotes reason to the simpleton
task of excuse-making in behalf of the rule of appe-
tites, desires, feelings, emotions, and glands.

Because man, hobbled in an ego-centric predicament,
cannot invent criteria greater than himself, the humanist
lacks a predictive capability. Without instinct or trans-
cendent criteria, humanism cannot evaluate options with
foresight and vision for progression and survival. Lack-
ing foresight, man is blind to potential consequence and
is unwittingly committed to mediocrity, collectivism,
averages, and regression - and worse. Humanism is an
unworthy worship.

The void of human ignorance can easily be filled with
a functional faith while not-so-patiently awaiting the
foot-dragging growth of human knowledge and behav-
ior. Faith, initiated by the Creator and revealed and
validated in His Word, the Bible, brings a transcend-
ent standard to man the choice-maker. Other philo-
sophies and religions are man-made, humanism, and
thereby lack what only the Bible has:

1.Transcendent Criteria and
2.Fulfilled Prophetic Validation.

The vision of faith in God and His Word is survival
equipment for today and the future.

Human is earth's Choicemaker. Psalm 25:12 He is by
nature and nature's God a creature of Choice - and of
Criteria. Psalm 119:30,173 His unique and definitive
characteristic is, and of Right ought to be, the natural
foundation of his environments, institutions, and re-
spectful relations to his fellow-man. Thus, he is orien-
ted to a Freedom whose roots are in the Order of the

Each individual human being possesses a unique, highly
developed, and sensitive perception of diversity. Thus
aware, man is endowed with a natural capability for enact-
ing internal mental and external physical selectivity.
Quantitative and qualitative choice-making thus lends
itself as the superior basis of an active intelligence.

Human is earth's Choicemaker. His title describes
his definitive and typifying characteristic. Recall
that his other features are but vehicles of experi-
ence intent on the development of perceptive
awareness and the following acts of decision and
choice. Note that the products of man cannot define
him for they are the fruit of the discerning choice-
making process and include the cognition of self,
the utility of experience, the development of value-
measuring systems and language, and the accultur-
ation of civilization.

The arts and the sciences of man, as with his habits,
customs, and traditions, are the creative harvest of
his perceptive and selective powers. Creativity, the
creative process, is a choice-making process. His
articles, constructs, and commodities, however
marvelous to behold, deserve neither awe nor idol-
atry, for man, not his contrivance, is earth's own
highest expression of the creative process.

Human is earth's Choicemaker. The sublime and
significant act of choosing is, itself, the Archimedean
fulcrum upon which man levers and redirects the
forces of cause and effect to an elected level of qual-
ity and diversity. Further, it orients him toward a
natural environmental opportunity, freedom, and
bestows earth's title, The Choicemaker, on his
singular and plural brow.

To the advent of a new season we commend the
present generation and the "multitudes in the valley of

Let us proclaim it. Behold!
The Season of Generation-Choicemaker Joel 3:14 KJV

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