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Document created: 1 March 2007
Air & Space Power Journal - Spring 2007

Building a Second-Half Team

Securing Cultural Expertise for the Battlespace

Capt Scott E. McIntosh, USAF

Editorial Abstract: This article contends that force development in the US Air Force is undermined by lackluster feedback at the tactical level. The authors outline the current use of feedback in the service, review factors related to creating effective developmental feedback at the tactical level, and comment on current initiatives designed to improve feedback and force development within the Air Force.

Americans love football. Sports talk shows earn high ratings, and numbers of fans call in to forecast and vent about their favorite team’s recent and future performances. The periodic spectacle of two relatively similar teams—their actions governed by a well-known rule book, meeting within visible boundaries to smash helmets and maneuver toward the end zones—has become part of our national identity.

Perhaps this popular sport has colored the American psyche’s grasp on war. For instance, a portion of our population still waxes nostalgic for the Cold War. Back then, everyone chose between two favorite “teams,” each of which—though endowed with different strengths and weaknesses—brought similar capabilities to the global playing field. Each side made a huge effort to peek into the enemy’s playbook to ascertain his capabilities—President Eisenhower, for instance, created a serious diplomatic donnybrook by attempting to find out via the U-2 the number of bombers the Soviets could bring to the game. One can understand our national-security apparatus’s assumption of success in this endeavor and the big resources committed to it. After all, in 1959 we had one principal enemy with one Big Red playbook, so learning its contents became a high priority.

Fortunately, the two teams never crossed the Fulda Gap line of scrimmage; nor did Coaches Khrushchev and Kennedy take their teams to the Cuba Bowl in 1963. Now, however, the United States has no near-peer competitor and needs to adapt its team accordingly. Each of the numerous potential opponents in the world today uses a different playbook. Analysts can no longer watch the postgame show to prepare for future competitions. Briefing coaches on mission, enemy, terrain, time, and available troops is no longer sufficient. Each enemy will use a playbook tailored to local conditions as well—those of the indigenous culture. Combatant commanders will need advisors, warriors, practitioners, theorists, and strategists educated in human terrain to help them best utilize their people and equipment before, during, and after hostilities. This array of professionals will also hone nonkinetic tools like public affairs (PA), civil affairs (CA), and psychological operations (PSYOP). These are important activities, especially for the postconflict phase of military operations—a phase inherently asymmetric and increasingly conducted in cities. The end of the Cold War, therefore, does not demand a new metaphor but a modification of our previous paradigm, and the Department of Defense (DOD) will need a bench crowded with on-call regional expertise to meet this demand.

Simply put, the enemy is going urban and asymmetric. The Russian approach to Grozny—pulling forces back beyond rocket-propelled-grenade range from city limits and flattening the population center with shells and bombs—will not work in Fallujah. The United States needs nonkinetic, “softer” solutions like PA, CA, and PSYOP to meet its national-security objectives in future conflicts. We can enable and maximize these activities by means of cultural expertise, a craft worthy of the DOD’s investment and cultivation.

Heading into the Stands:
A Useful Analogy for Counterinsurgency

As Maj Raymond Finch describes in his article on the Chechen guerrilla Shamil Basayev, the superpowers are still ready to take the field and prosecute conventional force-on-force conflict. The opposition, however, has discarded the Cold War rule book as nation-states erode and “away games” occur more frequently in venues like Chechnya and Somalia, where the opposition’s athletes “have moved up into the stands, wreaking all sorts of havoc.” Finch envisions the US military of the future maintaining its skills on the field but warns against sitting idle there in anticipation of the ideal opponent while the situation in the bleachers deteriorates.1

Thomas Barnett notes the resistance to pulling our military capability away from its traditional conventional approach:
Our continued focus on the Big One left us with a force that can topple rogue regimes at will, without the assistance of allies, but cannot manage all the lesser includeds that arise in the aftermath—even with the help of our closest allies. In effect, we spent the 1990s buying one sort of military, only to realize after 9/11 that we needed another. . . . America lacked the vision—and the visionaries—to define the 1990s as anything beyond a mere addendum to the Cold War.2
This line of reasoning raises a question: if not “the Big One,” which war should American forces prepare to fight?
Future enemies probably won’t be as militarily inept as Saddam Hussein, who twice went to war with the United States in 12 years, employing exactly the type of force that American commanders expected to fight in Central Europe. Our leadership must embrace the fact that future adversaries will not fight in open terrain, where US air supremacy and expertise with precision-guided munitions will threaten each operational and tactical maneuver. More likely, future adversaries will fight asymmetric warfare in cities.

As Prof. Steven Metz of the US Army War College’s Strategic Studies Institute writes, this asymmetry will emerge in four ways on the future battlefield:

1. The enemy’s method will be unconventional; he will not fight like American conventional forces do.
2. His time perspective will differ—he will deny US decision makers the quick success for which the American electorate yearns in war.
3. The enemy’s “cells, bands, and networks” will not be a hierarchical organization.
4. Finally, an enemy’s ethical asymmetry will be noticeable; he will fight in ways the US soldier finds abhorrent, outside the Geneva convention.3

Hence, the future enemy will not fit well into the parameters of our traditional adversary. If our commanders anticipate a tank battle, for example, the enemy may sow improvised explosive devices (IED) along our route of advance; he will not utilize tanks to assail us. He will be more patient in meeting his goals—like the Vietcong, he will not have to win the battle as long as he doesn’t lose the fight. For intelligence analysts, compiling orders of battle will prove difficult because the enemy’s units won’t be as clearly delineated as our own. Lastly, those amorphous units will fight dirty to wear down our resolve.

The US military’s current expeditionary mind-set makes ports and airfields a priority for delivering and sustaining our forces. The fact that most of these facilities are near major cities is significant since the latter offer several advantages to the asymmetric warrior. First, the reconnaissance-strike cycle that enables us to take down conventional forces so spectacularly works best in open terrain—like that in Mesopotamia. Dense clusters of buildings erode battlefield communications (ground-to-ground, ground-to-air, and air-to-ground) and the effectiveness of munitions. Second, lobbing munitions into a densely populated area significantly raises the chance of killing noncombatants. As the Russians discovered in Chechnya, in the age of the digital camera and global connectivity of the Internet, this sort of indiscriminate destruction weakens one’s case for armed intervention.

The population density of the modern city brings other issues to the combatant commander. As Lester Grau and Jacob Kipp describe this situation, operational commanders need to prepare for the needs of a city’s civilian population. If noncombatants can’t get potable water, an epidemic is likely, and starving, besieged civilians in the modern age will probably end up in front of a camera. American military leaders, therefore, cannot focus solely on the military task of taking down the city. Unlike Field Marshal Friedrich Paulus or Gen Vasily Chuikov at Stalingrad, today’s combatant commander “does not have the luxury of claiming that military necessity precludes consideration of civilians’ survival. He must prepare to restore or provide food, water, health care, public health services, and public safety.”4

In fact, commanders of occupation forces are legally bound to protect and provide for the civilians under their control—in effect to become the mayors of cities in which they are tasked to operate.5 Indigenous providers of essentials, however, can offer much more than the necessities. Grau and Kipp cite neighborhood subject-matter experts as the best sources of intelligence in urban combat. Both the limitations to the electronic spectrum in modern cities and the shortage of municipal maps with a scale of 1:12,500 for these areas have increased the value of harnessing “the local police force, city engineers, utility workers, hospital workers and shopkeepers” to offset the enemy’s human-intelligence advantages.6 In urban warfare, the enemy will often know the local subways and sewers. US commanders will also need this information as well as the locations of electric, gas, fiber-optic, and drainage conduits necessary to provide the aforementioned essentials to populations. A friendly relationship with public-service providers is thus a major benefit in winning the peace.

To return to the analogy, when the US team moves into the stands to confront the opposition’s mischief, it would be wise to get help from the stadium’s custodians and concessionaires. Their routine tasks of maintaining and marketing make them experts in negotiating key terrain and identifying anomalies. Such intelligence is critical in conducting counterinsurgencies; understanding both the opposing team and the spectators is its precursor.

Handling Insurgents:
Putting Aside Some Plowshares

What is the role of human terrain in all this? The most successful asymmetric warfare strategy during the Cold War—Mao Tse-tung’s “People’s War”—called for a team of revolutionary experts to agitate a populace via nationalism and local grievances. Establishing this underground political organization paved the way for organizing guerrilla warfare. “The people” were integral to the insurgents’ aims—its members actively picked up rifles and assailed government forces or simply provided safe haven and logistical support to guerrillas. The well-known analogy of insurgent fish swimming through the sea of the populace propagated with each insurgent success. Attaining such results and maintaining popular support against an arrogant, clueless government proved easy in this paradigm, in which “psychological operations and political mobilization paralleled military actions. In fact, violence was viewed as ‘armed propaganda’ designed for maximum psychological effect, such as demonstrating the weakness or incompetence of the regime or provoking it into excessive reactions, which eroded its support.”7 The most effective efforts to liquidate insurgents in this historical paradigm also alienated the public, both inside and outside the area of conflict. Often, the populace would thus shift its support from government forces to the opposition.

This ugly cycle of “armed propaganda” and “excessive reactions” remains pertinent. Breaking it demands finesse, flexibility, and intense familiarity with local conditions and populations: “In counterinsurgency campaigns, protection of civilians was (sometimes) emphasized, not so much as an end in itself but in order to undercut the insurgents’ infrastructure and because the civilian population was an important source of intelligence. In other words, protection and control of the population was a means to an end, which was defeating the insurgents” (emphasis added).8

As has recently become evident in Iraq, counterinsurgencies are political fights because both insurgent and counterinsurgent need the support of the population. According to Col John Jogerst, commandant of the USAF Special Operations School, “insurgencies are pure politics at the most basic level. It’s more like an election campaign to garner votes, albeit a no-holds-barred campaign on the south side of Chicago in the 1920s, than a war.”9

Human Terrain:
The Best Collectors Won’t
Be Overhead

We must still send our forces into combat with the tangibles (i.e., the best weaponry and equipment we can procure), but in these sorts of engagements, intangibles are just as important. Although the need for clearly delineated and articulated strategic goals lies outside the scope of this article, one intangible remains paramount to victory in future wars—understanding of regional culture. Thomas Hammes observes that understanding the political terrain is an essential facet of modern warfare: “This requires a deep understanding of the culture, history, and current political structure of the area. Because modern conflicts are rarely limited to a single country, this understanding must extend to the region as a whole.”10

In his recent assessment of lessons learned in modern counterinsurgencies, Col Joseph Celeski, USA, retired, a former commander of the Combined Joint Special Operations Task Force in Afghanistan, agrees that commanders going into the stands must have the best possible analysis of the demographics there:
Key to the analysis must include a cultural “assessment,” even prior to entering the area of operations, to understand the forces at play concerning ethnicity, language (to include dialects), religion, and nationalism (or ideology). This assessment must take into account the social influence networks which buttress the society—political, academic, criminal, business, technology, etc. The data provides a start point for the links and nodes sought for in the target analysis of human terrain systems (human nodes, influence links, nexus areas, etc.).11

Hence, many recent publications consider it essential that we understand this regional, human terrain. How can US commanders attain such knowledge?
Superior technology has allowed the American military to master the conventional fight. Unfortunately, it has also led to the gloomy description of “a first-half team playing in a league that keeps score through the end of the game.”12 Certainly, this superior technology will have its place in the last two quarters—but only as an enabler for a more suitable human-collection platform:

It is through good knowledge of local practices that it is possible to identify insurgents or those who assist them. There needs to be an ongoing process of consultation and dialogue with people on the ground for early warning, prevention, learning, and feedback during deployment and for the measures needed to ensure redundancy of missions. Human intelligence . . . based on engagement with local people can be supplemented by other intelligence methods (technology and espionage) but should increasingly be considered the centerpiece of intelligence.13
One can infer that in cities, where populations are dense and the fight, therefore, is more political, the best collectors exist at ground level and don’t require batteries.

Iraq: We’re beyond
the Second Quarter

America can use its technological superiority to collect amazing information that enables “fewer war fighters to levy more damage at a longer distance.”14 Again, however, the second half of the game is not so much about kinetic solutions. In a recent RAND report, Bruce ­Pirnie and others posit that modern air forces can engage ground targets more effectively and efficiently than ever. They also argue that—regardless of the monumental success in Kosovo—ground power remains critical to the modern fight because it necessitates contact with the locals. Airpower will never be the preferred method for such tasks as finding and engaging guerrillas, policing the area, collecting human intelligence, and constructing buildings. These endeavors are important to winning the peace in an urban environment because “activities requiring human contact tend to be most critical in counterinsurgency, stabilization, peacekeeping, ‘nation building,’ and related military operations, missions that have become increasingly important in U.S. strategy since 1989 and that are likely to predominate for the foreseeable future.”15

If US forces want to lob something heavy downrange at this point in the competition, it should be a message rather than a munition. At every step of the process—composition, delivery, and assessment—commanders from the president down will need regional expertise and superb intelligence to assist in this endeavor. As the British found in their counterinsurgencies in Malaya and Borneo during the 1960s, the best intelligence comes from locals, who will provide it only when the counter­insurgent guarantees them security from reprisals and a stake in the counterinsurgency’s success.16 In Iraq, it is essential that coalition forces find a way to do this as well, but they can accomplish only a small piece of it from air and space. Most of the weight rests on the shoulders of the on-scene (ground) commanders in places like Tal Afar and Fallujah.

According to military-affairs author Victor O’Reilly, the hazards of responding to an insurgency amongst a dense population were certainly a factor when the conventional phase of the war in Iraq wound down:
It is my belief that the insurgency was substantially created by the tactics used by the occupying force, who were initially the saviors, in their search for Saddam Hussein. Ambitious generals, who should have known better, created a very aggressive do-what-is-necessary culture. Frustrated troops, with no familiarity with the language or culture naturally make mistakes. And in a tribal society if you shoot one person it spreads right through the system. (emphasis added)
Furthermore, he notes, the search for weapons of mass destruction served to embitter the locals. The lack of interpreters forced soldiers to communicate with sign language, a state of affairs hardly conducive to winning hearts and minds. “The result,” O’Reilly posits, “was that American troops were blind and deaf to much of what was going on around them, and the Iraqis were often terrified.”17

The conflict in Iraq, however, is evolving. Current-affairs commentator Robert Bryce points out an alarming trend. In World War II, mines or booby traps accounted for 3 percent of US combat deaths; the figure rose to 4 percent in Korea and 9 in Vietnam. Notably, though, “from June to November of 2005, [IEDs] were responsible for 65% of combat deaths and roughly half of all nonfatal injuries.” Bryce concludes that this lack of direct engagement cedes the tactical advantage to insurgents, citing an interview with military theorist William Lind to support a particularly somber assessment for American soldiers in Iraq: “Our whole military is based on the idea of overwhelming firepower put on targets, but that doesn’t work in this type of conflict. We are fighting an enemy that has made himself untargetable. . . . Therefore, insurgents can continue fighting the American military in Iraq indefinitely—regardless of how many US troops are deployed or how quickly they are massed.”18 Given the approximate figure of $3.5 billion that the DOD spent in 2006 on counter-IED initiatives and recent press reports that the Army has overextended itself due to frequent rotations to Southwest Asia, one wonders how to address the fluid situation in Iraq.19
Barnett provides a litmus test for US military success in modern expeditionary warfare: “Did we end up improving local security sufficiently to trigger an influx of global connectivity? Increasingly, our military interventions will be judged by the connectivity they leave behind, not the smoking holes.”20 Should the United States employ this metric for success, one would expect a search through the national-security quiver for something less lethal, kinetic, and technical than means used against previous asymmetric foes. As historian Michael Howard remarks in a recent article, “The light provided by our knowledge of technological capabilities and our capacity for sophisticated strategic analysis is so dazzling as to be almost hypnotic; but it is in those shadowy regions of human understanding based on our knowledge of social development, cultural diversity and patterns of behaviour that we have to look for the answers.”21

The United States holds a superlative edge in air superiority, medical evacuation and treatment, logistics, and robust fire support—all essential facets. We can also put multiple platforms over the battlefield to monitor both the fight and many variables invisible to ground commanders. Each of these strengths remains essential even if enemy players drop their uniforms and head into the bleachers; this is certainly the case in Iraq, where IEDs represent a concrete symptom of this development. In order to win such small fights, however, the US team must communicate with concessionaires and custodial staff to keep feeding the spectators and to gain familiarity with the stadium. Maintaining communication with the fans themselves can yield valuable intelligence when something unexpected pops up in the crowd.

Consider, for instance, the aforementioned IEDs. In No True Glory: A Frontline Account of the Battle for Fallujah, Bing West describes not only the combat learning curve, but also a specific failure that could have been avoided had we established a working dialogue with the city dwellers. He reveals that soldiers of the US Army’s 3rd Infantry Division quickly grew suspicious of their surroundings: dead dogs, barrels lying at odd angles, or cardboard boxes remaining stationary during high winds could be booby-trapped. Daily patrols, one could surmise, were essential to building this situational awareness. “In mid-July [2003], though, one soldier was killed and three wounded when an artillery shell detonated as a convoy drove through western Fallujah. Dozens of ­local residents had driven around the device, but no one had warned the Americans.”22

It takes two entities to conduct a dialogue; we need to cultivate finesse in order to prevent American players from knocking people over and stepping on toes in their drive toward mission accomplishment. An active campaign to explain the presence of American might and to display interest in the population’s well-being could gain at least passive support from spectators and could induce local inhabitants to surreptitiously point out hazards to US soldiers.

Possible Solutions

The means to facilitate this dialogue already reside within the aforementioned quiver, and the DOD has ready access to it. First, as defined by Joint Publication (JP) 1-02, Department of Defense Dictionary of Military and Associated Terms, 12 April 2001 (as amended through 14 April 2006), public affairs is “public information, command information, and community relations activities directed toward both the external and internal publics with interest in the Department of Defense.” Simply put, US forces can communicate their intents and activities via this medium. The need for PA is highlighted in the 9/11 Commission Report, wherein Richard Holbrooke asks, “ ‘How can a man in a cave outcommunicate the world’s leading communications society?’ ” and Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage states that “Americans have been ‘exporting our fears and our anger,’ not our vision of opportunity and hope.”23 PA may not invent US vision and goals, but when it comes to the struggle to drown out radical anti-US rhetoric, it certainly has a critical role to play in communicating them to the affected parties.

Second, according to JP 1-02, civil affairs activities “(1) enhance the relationship between military forces and civil authorities in areas where military forces are present; and (2) involve application of civil affairs functional specialty skills, in areas normally the responsibility of civil government, to enhance conduct of civil-military operations.” Thomas Henriksen mentions that such activities include “refurbishing schools, building roads, digging wells, and treating the sick.”24 In sum, CA minimizes the disruption of noncombatants’ lives in the war zone, making each of them a stakeholder in the operation. If, for instance, a municipality is without potable water for months and US forces provide a permanent waterworks, then the head of every affected household has an interest in keeping insurgents far away from the town.

Prof. Dan Moran of the Naval Postgraduate School writes that Mao’s soldiers helped harvest crops, deterred crime, taught citizens to read, and made civil reconstruction a priority while fighting Japanese and Nationalist forces. These activities “allowed the revolutionary warrior to occupy the political and psychological void his own actions were intended to create.” By contrast, he notes, fighting against insurgencies demands a deployable instrument to work shoulder-to-shoulder with local populations and provide better “grassroots social action” than the insurgents.25 The United States recognized the need to fill this void by creating CA units during World War II, so the pertinent apparatus has existed for six decades.

JP 1-02 defines a third nonkinetic tool, psycho­logical operations, as “planned operations to convey selected information and indicators to foreign audiences to influence their emotions, motives, objective reasoning, and ultimately the behavior of foreign governments, organizations, groups, and individuals. The purpose of psychological operations is to induce or reinforce foreign attitudes and behavior favorable to the originator’s objectives.” As highlighted previously, each of these concepts—PA, CA, and PSYOP—is important to commanders fighting in cities and against asymmetric foes.

Cultural information, buttressed by cultural intelligence, serves as the foundation of effective PA, CA, and PSYOP. Cultural preparation of the battlefield, therefore, is paramount. In their article “Refocusing Intelligence,” Keith Masback and Sean Tytler envision intelligence providing leadership—the “consumer”—not only with facts, but also the context of those facts. Thus consumers see battlefield causes as well as effects, a perspective that could augment their effectiveness in unconventional military actions. Where can the US military acquire this level of analysis?
Education that stresses investigative skills, tests assumptions, and informs our analysts with a complete range of cultural, economic, and social understanding will best position them to overcome biases, and strengthen their argument as they seek to mitigate the biases of their customers. A critical enabler to mitigating analyst and user bias is cultural awareness. Operators and decision makers must understand our adversaries—their biases, cultural beliefs, and image of the United States—in order to truly understand their motivations and intentions.26

Currently, three sources can provide this perspective to our commanders. First, as Barnett points out, manpower is moving from the “Gap,” where American forces will increasingly deploy to export security, to the industrialized and globalized “Core”: “They are coming, [and] our only choice is how we welcome them” (emphasis in original).27 Anyone who has spent time in a US military organization has met a service member who has earned his US citizenship via service in that organization. Each of these individuals, beyond his or her military specialty, can provide area expertise to US commanders. A concerted effort to locate these people and attach them to units deploying into their areas of origin could yield dividends—ask any commander who has dealt with a locally contracted interpreter in a combat zone. Certain advantages accrue by having someone in the US military hierarchy—in or out of uniform—available to commanders to take the pulse of local populations or enable negotiations with them.

Second, at the staff level, regional partners are very important. Beyond the obvious blood-and-treasure burdens shared by coalition partners, regional expertise could prove vital not only to smashing conventional forces, but also to securing the support of those the coalition wishes to liberate in the process. If, for example, a commander from Minnesota wanted to take down Florida, he would be wise to look for common interests with Mississippi, Georgia, and Alabama. Liaison officers from those states could advise the commander’s staff on a wide range of issues should common interests emerge. Although some people may prefer a unilateral approach, imagine how the amphibious assault on Hitler’s Fortress Europe would have developed without assistance from the British—or the French. For a more recent example, one need only look to the essential support provided by Kurdish peshmerga militias (with 10th Special Forces Group advisors) to the 173rd Airborne Brigade in the first days of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Third and most desirable, especially from the security standpoint, is the foreign area officer (FAO) program. In April 2005, Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz signed Department of Defense Directive (DODD) 1315.17, Military Department Foreign Area Officer (FAO) Programs, tasking the military departments to “deliberately develop a corps of FAOs, who shall be commissioned officers with a broad range of military skills and experiences; have knowledge of political-military affairs; have familiarity with the political, cultural, sociological, economic, and geographic factors of the countries and regions in which they are stationed; and have professional proficiency in one or more of the dominant languages in their regions of expertise.” The directive calls on the heads of DOD components to cultivate a stable of on-call regional experts with a principal military specialty, a graduate degree, duty experience in the regional area, and professional-level foreign-language skills. To make this proposal marketable, FAOs will receive opportunity “for promotion into the General/Flag Officer ranks” and periodic “language [as well as] regional expertise sustainment and refresher training.”28 Recognizing the importance of this asset, the DOD is providing high-visibility billets and maintaining needed expertise for the program.


As Sean Edwards forecasts in his RAND study Mars Unmasked: The Changing Face of Urban Operations, asymmetry and urban warfare will probably marry up against US forces in future conflict. In this scenario, Edwards also posits that the American public will expect war with few casualties, that both physical limitations and those imposed by the rules of engagement will favor the other side, and that infantry-on-infantry clashes will degrade US advantages in heavy weaponry: “When civilians are present in large numbers, their support may be the center of gravity, especially in insurgencies. Noncombatants can conceal the enemy, provide intelligence, and take an active role in the fighting” (emphasis added).29 The physical urban environment with its inherent restrictions—“density of structures, the teeming population, the complexity of terrain, the multiplicity of channels for communication, the voluminous background ‘noise,’ the prodigious quantity and heterogeneity of resources”—provides a rich human terrain as well.30 The DOD—as validated by DODD 1315.17—has realized the importance of cultivating subject-matter experts to help prepare that human terrain.

The US team has a great record on the gridiron, but its efforts to move with finesse among the people and protect them in the stands are spotty. Similarly, America enjoys superb technology, but that advantage won’t be enough to support its teams when they leave the field of conventional play. The added emphasis and resources for area expertise enable commanders and statesmen—coaches, quarterbacks, and managers—to better equip, train, and lead our players to victory in the stands as well. The American citizenry—which includes the team’s players, fans, and owners—will witness returns on the investment.

[ Feedback? Email the Editor ]


1. Maj Raymond C. Finch III, “A Face of Future Battle: Chechen Fighter Shamil Basayev,” Military Review 77, no. 3 (May–June 1997): 39.

2. Thomas P. M. Barnett, The Pentagon’s New Map: War and Peace in the Twenty-first Century (New York: G. P. Putnam’s Sons, 2004), 62–63.

3. Steven Metz, “Small Wars: From Low Intensity Conflict to Irregular Challenges,” in Rethinking the Principles of War, ed. Anthony D. McIvor (Annapolis: Naval Institute Press, 2005), 280.

4. Lt Col Lester W. Grau and Jacob W. Kipp, “Urban Combat: Confronting the Specter,” Military Review 89, no. 4 (July–August 1999): 13, https://calldbp.leavenworth .army.mil/eng_mr/2006091214483150/04_Jul_Aug/REFTP/05art.pdf#xml=/scripts/cqcgi.exe/@ss_prod .env?CQ_SESSION_KEY=RNUPQSWPDCVP&CQ_QH =125622&CQDC=6&CQ_PDF_HIGHLIGHT=YES&CQ _CUR_DOCUMENT=1.

5. See convention 4, pt. 3, sec. 3, Reference Guide to the Geneva Conventions, http://www.globalissuesgroup.com/geneva/convention4.html.

6. Grau and Kipp, “Urban Combat,” 14.

7. Metz, “Small Wars,” 83.

8. Mary H. Kaldor, “Principles for the Use of the Military in Human Security Operations,” in Rethinking the Principles of War, 393.

9. Col John Jogerst, commandant, United States Air Force Special Operations School, interview by the author, 28 February 2006.

10. Thomas X. Hammes, “Rethinking the Principles of War: The Future of Warfare,” in Rethinking the Principles of War, 273.

11. Col Joseph D. Celeski, Operationalizing COIN [counterinsurgency], JSOU Report 05-2 (Hurlburt Field, FL: Joint Special Operations University, September 2005), 40.

12. Barnett, Pentagon’s New Map, 319.

13. Kaldor, “Principles,” 396.

14. Dr. J. Douglas Beason and Dr. Mark Lewis, “The War Fighter’s Need for Science and Technology,” Air and Space Power Journal 19, no. 4 (Winter 2005): 72, http://www.airpower.maxwell.af.mil/airchronicles/apj/apj05/win05/win05.pdf.

15. Bruce R. Pirnie et al., Beyond Close Air Support: Forging a New Air-Ground Partnership, MG-301-AF (Santa Monica, CA: RAND, 2005), 25, http://www.rand.org/pubs/monographs/2005/RAND_MG301.pdf.

16. Maj Scott R. McMichael, A Historical Perspective on Light Infantry (Fort Leavenworth, KS: US Army Command and General Staff College, Combat Studies Institute, 1987), 137, http://www.cgsc.army.mil/carl/download/csipubs/historic/hist_c3_pt2.pdf.  

17. Quoted in James Fallows, “Why Iraq Has No Army,” Atlantic 296, no. 5 (December 2005): 66–67, http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/200512/iraq-army.

18. Robert Bryce, “Man versus Mine,” Atlantic 297, no. 1 (January/February 2006): 44, 46.

19. Ibid., 44; and Associated Press, “Army Stretched to Breaking Point, Report Says,” CNN.com, 25 January 2006, http://www.cnn.com/2006/US/01/25/army.study .ap/index.html (accessed 25 January 2006).

20. Barnett, Pentagon’s New Map, 137.

21. Michael Howard, “The Future of Deterrence,” RUSI [Royal United Services Institute] Journal 131, no. 2 (June 1986): 10.

22. Bing West, No True Glory: A Frontline Account of the Battle for Fallujah (New York: Bantam Books, 2005), 18.

23. National Commission on Terrorist Attacks upon the United States, The 9/11 Commission Report: Final Report of the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks upon the United States (Washington, DC: The Commission, 2004), 377, http://www.9-11commission.gov/report/911Report.pdf.

24. Thomas H. Henriksen, Dividing Our Enemies, JSOU Report 05-5 (Hurlburt Field, FL: Joint Special Operations University, November 2005), 1.

25. Daniel Moran, Wars of National Liberation (London: Cassell, 2001), 49.

26. Keith J. Masback and Sean Tytler, “Refocusing Intelligence,” in Rethinking the Principles of War, 544–45.

27. Barnett, Pentagon’s New Map, 214.

28. Department of Defense Directive (DODD) 1315.17, Military Department Foreign Area Officer (FAO) Programs, 28 April 2005, 2, 4, http://www.dtic.mil/whs/directives/corres/pdf/131517_042805/131517p.pdf.

29. Sean J. A. Edwards, Mars Unmasked: The Changing Face of Urban Operations, MR-1173-A (Santa Monica, CA: RAND, 2000), xi, xvii, http://www.rand.org/pubs/monograph_reports/MR1173/MR1173.sum.pdf.

30. Scott Gerwehr and Russell W. Glenn, Unweaving the Web: Deception and Adaptation in Future Urban Operations, MR-1495-A (Santa Monica, CA: RAND, 2003), xiii, http://www.rand.org/pubs/monograph_reports/MR1495/MR1495.sum.pdf.


Capt Scott E. McIntosh

Capt Scott E. McIntosh (MA, Naval Postgraduate School) is director of the South Central Asia Orientation Course at the USAF Special Operations School, Hurlburt Field, Florida. He previously served at McConnell AFB, Kansas, providing tactical and strategic intelligence support to the base’s KC-135 mission and supporting combat aircrews in Operations Northern Watch, Southern Watch, and Allied Force. He then provided intelligence support to the 3rd Armored Corps’ air liaison officer at Fort Hood, Texas, and deployed to the air support operations center for Combined Joint Task Forces Mountain and 180 to enable close air support for Operation Enduring Freedom. A Eurasian affairs specialist, he has studied at the Russian Government Language Institute at St. Petersburg, Russia; Ivan Franko University at L’viv, Ukraine; and the US Army’s Foreign Language Training Center–Europe at Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany. Captain McIntosh is a distinguished graduate of both the Naval Postgraduate School and Defense Language Institute in Monterey, California.


The conclusions and opinions expressed in this document are those of the author cultivated in the freedom of expression, academic environment of Air University. They do not reflect the official position of the U.S. Government, Department of Defense, the United States Air Force or the Air University

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