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Title: Shock and Awe — Achieving Rapid Dominance
Author: Wade, James P., Ullman, Harlan
Language: English
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Shock and Awe:
Achieving Rapid Dominance

Written By

Harlan K. Ullman and James P. Wade


L.A. "Bud" Edney, Fred M. Franks, Charles A. Horner, Jonathan T. Howe,
and Keith Brendley

NDU Press Book
December 1996


Introduction to Rapid Dominance

Chapter 1. Background and Basis
Chapter 2. Shock and Awe
Chapter 3. Strategic, Policy, and Operational Application
Chapter 4. An Outline for System Innovation and Technological
Chapter 5. Future Directions

Appendices -- Reflections of Three Former Commanders
    Appendix A. "Thoughts on Rapid Dominance" by Admiral Bud Edney
    Appendix B. "Defense Alternatives: Forces Required" by General
                 Chuck Horner
    Appendix C. "Enduring Realities and Rapid Dominance" by General
                 Fred Franks

Biographies of the Study Group Members


We are in the early stages of what promises to be an extended debate
about the future of conflict and the future of our defense
establishment. Few will deny that the winds of change are blowing as
never before, driven by a radically altered geopolitical situation, an
evolving information-oriented society, advancing technology, and
budgetary constraints. How our nation responds to the challenge of
change will determine our ability to shape the future and defend
ourselves against 21st century threats. The major issue, however it
may be manifested, involves the degree of change that is required.
Advocates, all along the spectrum from a military technical revolution
to a revolution in military affairs to a revolution in security
affairs, are making their cases. Military institutions are by their
very nature somewhat conservative. History has shown that success has
often sown the seeds of future failure. We as a nation can ill afford
to follow in the footsteps of those who have rested on their laurels
and failed to stretch their imaginations.

Often, those who are the most knowledgeable and experienced about a
subject are not in the most advantageous position to understand a new
world order. Yet these same individuals are often among the most
credible voices and therefore are essential to progress. The authors
of Shock and Awe are a highly accomplished and distinguished group
with the credibility that comes from years of front line experience.
Thus, this work is important not only because of the ideas contained
within, but because of the caliber and credibility of the authors.

ACTIS seeks to articulate and explore advanced concepts. In sponsoring
this work and in disseminating its initial results, we hope to
contribute to the ongoing dialogue about alternatives, their promises,
and their risks. As the authors note, this is a work in progress meant
not to provide definitive solutions but a proposed perspective for
considering future security needs and strategies. To the extent that
vigorous debate ensues we will be successful.

David S. Alberts
Washington, D.C.
October 1996


The purpose of this paper is to explore alternative concepts for
structuring mission capability packages (MCPs) around which future U.
S. military forces might be configured. From the very outset of this
study group's deliberations, we agreed that the most useful
contribution we could make would be to attempt to reach beyond what we
saw as the current and commendable efforts, largely but not entirely
within the Department of Defense, to define concepts for strategy,
doctrine, operations, and force structure to deal with a highly
uncertain future. In approaching this endeavor, we fully recognized
the inherent and actual limits and difficulties in attempting to reach
beyond what may prove to be the full extent of our grasp.

It is, of course, clear that U.S. military forces are currently the
most capable in the world and are likely to remain so for a long time
to come. Why then, many will ask, should we examine and even propose
major excursions and changes if the country occupies this position of
military superiority? For reasons noted in this study, we believe that
excursions are important if only to confirm the validity of current
defense approaches. There are several overrarching realities that have
led us to this conclusion. First, while everyone recognizes that the
Cold War has ended, there is not a consensus about what this means for
more precisely defining the nature of our future security needs.
Despite this absence of both clairvoyance and a galvanizing external
danger, the United States is actively examining new strategic options
and choices. The variety of conceptual efforts underway in the
Pentagon to deal with this uncertainty exemplifies this reality.

At the same time, the current dominance and superiority of American
military power, unencumbered by the danger of an external peer
competitor, have created a period of strategic advantage during which
we have the luxury of time, perhaps measured in many years, to
re-examine with a margin of safety our defense posture. On the other
hand, potential adversaries cannot be expected to ignore this
predominant military capability of the United States and fail to try
to exploit, bypass, or counter it. In other words, faced with American
military superiority in ships, tanks, aircraft, weapons and, most
importantly, in competent fighting personnel, potential adversaries
may try to change the terms of future conflict and make as irrelevant
as possible these current U.S. advantages. We proceed at our own risk
if we dismiss this possibility.

Second, it is relatively clear that current U.S. military capability
will shrink. Despite the pledges of the two major American political
parties to maintain or expand the current level of defense capability,
both the force structure and defense infrastructure are too large to
be maintained at even the present levels and within the defense
budgets that are likely to be approved. Unless a new menace
materializes, defense is headed for "less of the same." Such
reductions may have no strategic consequences. However, that is an
outcome that we believe should not be left to chance.

This shrinkage also means that the Pentagon's good faith strategic
reviews aimed at dealing with our future security needs may be caught
up in the defense budget debate over downsizing and could too easily
drift into becoming advocacy or marketing documents. As the services
are forced into more jealously guarding a declining force structure,
the tendency to "stove-pipe" and compartmentalize technology and
special programs is likely to increase, thereby complicating the
problem of making full use of our extraordinary technological
resources. This means that some external thinking, removed from the
bureaucratic pressures and demands, may be essential to stimulating
and sustaining innovation.

Third, the American commercial-industrial base is undergoing profound
change propelled largely by the entrepreneurial nature of the free
enterprise system and the American personality. Whether in information
or materials-related technology or for that matter in other areas too
numerous to count, the nature of competition is driving both product
breadth and improvement at rates perhaps unthinkable a decade ago. One
sign of these trends is the reality that virtually all new jobs in
this country are being created by small business. In the areas of
commercial information and related management information systems,
these changes are extraordinary and were probably unpredictable even a
few years ago.

On the so-called information highway, performance is increasing
dramatically and quickly while price, cost, and the time to bring to
market new generation technology are diminishing. These positive
trends are not matched yet in the defense-industrial base. One
consequence of this broad commercial transformation is that any future
set of defense choices may be inexorably linked to and dependent on
this profound, ongoing change in the commercial sector and in learning
to harness private sector advances in technology-related products. It
must also be understood that only the United States among all states
and nations has the vastness and breadth of resources and commercial
capability to undertake the full exploitation of this revolutionary

Finally, it is clear that U.S. forces are engaged and deployed
worldwide, often at operating tempos as high as or higher than during
the Cold War. These demands will continue and the diversity of
assigned tasks is unlikely to contract. These forces must be properly
manned, equipped, and trained and must carry out their missions to
standards that are both high and expected by the nation's leaders and
its public. The matter of maintaining this capability while attempting
to reshape the force for a changing future is a major and daunting
challenge not to be underestimated.

These structural realities are exciting and offer a major opportunity
for real revolution and change if we are able and daring enough to
exploit them. This, in turn, has led us to develop the concept of
Rapid Dominance and its attendant focus on Shock and Awe. Rapid
Dominance seeks to integrate these multifaceted realities and facts
and apply them to the common defense at a time when uncertainty about
the future is perhaps one of the few givens. We believe the principles
and ideas underlying this concept are sufficiently compelling and
different enough from current American defense doctrine encapsulated
by "overwhelming or decisive force," "dominant battlefield awareness,"
and "dominant maneuver" to warrant closer examination.

Since before Sun Tzu and the earliest chroniclers of war recorded
their observations, strategists and generals have been tantalized and
confounded by the elusive goal of destroying the adversary's will to
resist before, during, and after battle. Today, we believe that an
unusual opportunity exists to determine whether or not this
long-sought strategic goal of affecting the will, understanding, and
perception of an adversary can be brought closer to fruition. Even if
this task cannot be accomplished, we believe that, at the very
minimum, such an effort will enhance and improve the ability of our
military forces to carry out their missions more successfully through
identifying and reinforcing particular points of leverage in the
conflict and by identifying and creating additional options and
choices for employing our forces more effectively.

Perhaps for the first time in years, the confluence of strategy,
technology, and the genuine quest for innovation has the potential for
revolutionary change. We envisage Rapid Dominance as the possible
military expression, vanguard, and extension of this potential for
revolutionary change. The strategic centers of gravity on which Rapid
Dominance concentrates, modified by the uniquely American ability to
integrate all this, are these junctures of strategy, technology, and
innovation which are focused on the goal of affecting and shaping the
will of the adversary. The goal of Rapid Dominance will be to destroy
or so confound the will to resist that an adversary will have no
alternative except to accept our strategic aims and military
objectives. To achieve this outcome, Rapid Dominance must control the
operational environment and through that dominance, control what the
adversary perceives, understands, and knows, as well as control or
regulate what is not perceived, understood, or known.

In Rapid Dominance, it is an absolutely necessary and vital condition
to be able to defeat, disarm, or neutralize an adversary's military
power. We still must maintain the capacity for the physical and
forceful occupation of territory should there prove to be no
alternative to deploying sufficient numbers of personnel and equipment
on the ground to accomplish that objective. Should this goal of
applying our resources to controlling, affecting, and breaking the
will of an adversary to resist remain elusive, we believe that Rapid
Dominance can still provide a variety of options and choices for
dealing with the operational demands of war and conflict.

To affect the will of the adversary, Rapid Dominance will apply a
variety of approaches and techniques to achieve the necessary level of
Shock and Awe at the appropriate strategic and military leverage
points. This means that psychological and intangible, as well as
physical and concrete effects beyond the destruction of enemy forces
and supporting military infrastructure, will have to be achieved. It
is in this broader and deeper strategic application that Rapid
Dominance perhaps most fundamentally differentiates itself from
current doctrine and offers revolutionary application.

Flowing from the primary concentration on affecting the adversary's
will to resist through imposing a regime of Shock and Awe to achieve
strategic aims and military objectives, four characteristics emerge
that will define the Rapid Dominance military force. These are noted
and discussed in later chapters. The four characteristics are near
total or absolute knowledge and understanding of self, adversary, and
environment; rapidity and timeliness in application; operational
brilliance in execution; and (near) total control and signature
management of the entire operational environment.

Whereas decisive force is inherently capabilities driven-that is, it
focuses on defeating the military capability of an adversary and
therefore tends to be scenario sensitive-Rapid Dominance would seek to
be more universal in application through the overriding objective of
affecting the adversary's will beyond the boundaries traditionally
defined by military capability alone. In other words, where decisive
force is likely to be most relevant is against conventional military
capabilities that can be overwhelmed by American (and allied) military
superiority. In conflict or crisis conditions that depart from this
idealized scenario, the superior nature of our forces is assumed to be
sufficiently broad to prevail. Rapid Dominance would not make this
distinction in either theory or in practice.

We note for the record that should a Rapid Dominance force actually be
fielded with the requisite operational capabilities, this force would
be neither a silver bullet nor a panacea and certainly not an antidote
or preventative for a major policy blunder, miscalculation, or
mistake. It should also be fully appreciated that situations will
exist in which Rapid Dominance (or any other doctrine) may not work or
apply because of political, strategic, or other limiting factors.

We realize some will criticize our focus on affecting an adversary's
will, perception, and understanding through Shock and Awe on the
grounds that this idea is not new and that such an outcome may not be
physically achievable or politically desirable. On the first point, we
believe the use of basic principles of strategy can stand us in good
stead even and perhaps especially in the modern era when adversaries
may not elect to fight the United States along traditional or expected
lines. On whether this ability can and should be achieved, we believe
that question should be part of a broader examination.

Finally, we argue that what is also new in this approach is the way in
which we attempt to integrate far more broadly strategy, technology,
and innovation to achieve Shock and Awe. It is this interaction and
focus which we think will provide the most interesting results.

For these and other reasons, we have embarked on an ambitious
intellectual excursion in making a preliminary definition of Rapid
Dominance. For the moment, we view Rapid Dominance in the formation
stage and not as a final product. Over the next months, we believe
further steps should be taken to refine Rapid Dominance and to develop
"paper" systems and force designs that will add crucial specificity to
this concept. Then, this Rapid Dominance force can be assessed against
five sets of questions:

  - First, assuming that a Rapid Dominance force can be fielded with
    the appropriate capabilities of Shock and Awe to affect and shape
    the adversary's will, how would this force compare with and
    improve on our ability to fight, win, and deal with a major
    regional contingency (MRC)?
  - Second, what utility, if any, does Rapid Dominance and its
    application of Shock and Awe imply for Operations Other Than War
    (OOTW)? Where might Rapid Dominance apply in OOTW, where would it
    not, and where might it offer mixed benefits?
  - Third, what are the political implications of Rapid Dominance in
    both broad and specific applications and could this lead to a form
    of political deterrence to underwrite future U.S. policy? Would
    this political deterrence prove acceptable to allies and to our
    own public?
  - Fourth, what might Rapid Dominance mean for alliances, coalitions,
    and the conduct of allied and combined operations?
  - Finally, what are the consequences of Rapid Dominance on defense
    resource investment priorities and future budgets?

From this examination and experimentation, we believe useful results
will flow.

We also would like to acknowledge the support and role of the National
Defense University in sponsoring this first effort. In particular, we
owe a huge debt of gratitude to Dr. David Alberts of NDU whose
intelligence, enthusiasm, and wisdom, as well as his full support,
have been invaluable and without which this project would have been
far less productive.

Washington, D.C.

1 September 1996

L.A. Edney       J.T. Howe
F.M. Franks      H.K. Ullman
C. A. Horner     J.P. Wade

Introduction to Rapid Dominance

The military posture and capability of the United States of America
are, today, dominant. Simply put, there is no external adversary in
the world that can successfully challenge the extraordinary power of
the American military in either regional conflict or in "conventional"
war as we know it once the United States makes the commitment to take
whatever action may be needed. To be sure, the first phase of a crisis
may be the most difficult-if an aggressor has attacked and U.S. forces
are not in place. However, it will still be years, if not decades,
before potential adversaries will be able to deploy systems with a
full panoply of capabilities that are equivalent to or better than the
aggregate strength of the ships, aircraft, armored vehicles, and
weapons systems in our inventory. Even if an adversary could deploy
similar systems, then matching and overcoming the superb training and
preparation of American service personnel would still be a daunting

Given this reality that our military dominance can and will extend for
some considerable time to come, provided we are prepared to use it,
why then is a re-examination of American defense posture and doctrine
important? The answers to this question involve (1) the changing
nature of the domestic and international environments; (2) the complex
nature of resolving inter and intra-state conflict that falls outside
conventional war, including peacekeeping, and countering terrorism,
crime, and the use of weapons of mass destruction; (3) resource
constraints; (4) defense infrastructure and technical industrial bases
raised on a large, continuous infusion of funding now facing a future
of austerity; and (5) the vast uncertainties of the so-called social,
economic, and information revolutions that could check or counter many
of the nation's assumptions as well as public support currently
underwriting defense.

It is clear that these so-called grey areas involving non-traditional
Operations Other Than War (OOTW) and law enforcement tasks are growing
and pose difficult problems and challenges to American military
forces, especially when and where the use of force may be
inappropriate or simply may not work. The expansion of the role of UN
forces to nation-building in Somalia and its subsequent failure comes
to mind as an example of this danger. It is also arguable that the
formidable nature and huge technological lead of American military
capability could induce an adversary to move to a strategy that
attempted to circumvent all this fighting power through other clever
or agile means. The Vietnam War is a grim reminder of the political
nature of conflict and how our power was once outflanked. Training,
morale, and readiness to fight are perishable commodities requiring
both a generous expenditure of resources and careful nurturing.

Thus, the greatest constraints today to retaining the most dominant
military force in the world, paradoxically, may be in overcoming the
inertia of this success. We may be our own worst enemy.

During the Cold War when the danger was clear, the defense debate was
often fought over how to balance the so-called "strategy-force
structure-budget" formula. Today, that formula has expanded to include
"threat, strategy, force structure, budget, and infrastructure."
Without a "clear and present danger" such as the Axis Powers in 1941
or, later, the Soviet Union to coalesce public agreement on the
threat, it is difficult to construct a supporting strategy that can be
effective either in setting priorities or objectives. Hence, today's
"two war" or two nearly simultaneous Major Regional Contingency (MRC)
strategy has been criticized as strategically and financially
excessive. As noted by administration officials, the current force
structure does not meet the demands of the "two war," MRC strategy
and, in any event, the budget will not support the planned force
structure. Finally, it is widely recognized that the United States
possesses far more infrastructure such as bases and facilities than it
needs to support the current force, thereby draining scarce resources
away from fighting power. As a result, there is a substantial defense
imbalance that will erode fighting power.

In designing its defense posture, the United States has adopted the
doctrine of employing "decisive or overwhelming force." This doctrine
reinforces American advantages in strategic mobility, prepositioning,
technology, training, and in fielding integrated military systems to
provide and retain superiority, and responds to the minimum casualty
and collateral damage criteria set first in the Reagan Administration.
The Revolution in Military Affairs or RMA is cited as the phenomenon
or process by which the United States continues to exploit technology
to maintain this decisive force advantage, particularly in terms of
achieving "dominant battlefield awareness." Through this awareness,
the United States should be able to obtain perfect or near perfect
information on virtually all technical aspects of the battlefield and
therefore be able to defeat or destroy an adversary more effectively,
with fewer losses to ourselves and with a range of capabilities from
long-range precision strike to more effective close-in weapons.

Before proceeding further, an example is useful to focus some of the
as yet unknowable consequences of these broader realities, changes,
and trends. The deployment of American forces to Bosnia is a reaction
to and representation of major shifts occurring in the post-Cold War
world. With these shifts, this deployment is suggestive of what may
lie ahead for the use, relevance, and design of military force. The
legacy of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and then, the start of the Cold War,
caused the West to adopt policies for containing and deterring the
broad threat posed by the Soviet Union and its ideology. Thermonuclear
weapons, complemented over time by strong conventional forces,
threatened societal damage to Russia. Conventional forces backed by
tactical nuclear weapons were later required, in part, to halt a
massive Soviet ground attack in Europe and, in part, to provide an
alternative to (immediate) use of nuclear weapons.

Today, the First Armored Division, the principal American unit serving
in Bosnia is, in essence, the same force that fought so well in
_Desert Storm_ and, for the bulk of the Cold War along with our other
units, had been designed to defend NATO against and then defeat a
numerically superior, armored and mechanized Soviet adversary
advancing across the plains of Germany. Now these troops, as well as
others from both sides of the former Iron Curtain, are engaged in OOTW
for which special training, rules of engagement, command arrangements,
and other support structures have been put in place at short notice,
few of which were even envisaged a few years ago. These are also
operations that, because of intense, instantaneous media coverage, can
have huge domestic political impact especially if events go wrong.

Whether or not this armored division is the most optimally configured
force for such an operation is not relevant for the moment even though
this unit probably was the most appropriate for this task. However, it
is prudent to examine the consequences of changing tasks presaged by
Bosnia, in which the enemy is instability rather than an ideological
or regional adversary we are trying to contain or defeat and
neutrality on our part may be vital to the success of the mission. Do
these changes mean that we should alter our traditional approach to
the doctrine for and design of forces? If so, how? Are there
alternative or more effective ways and means to conduct these
peacekeeping-related operations? And, in this evaluation, are there
alternative doctrines we should consider to fight wars more
effectively as we envisage scenarios under the construct of the MRC?

With the end of the USSR and absent a hostile Russian superpower,
there is no external threat to the existence or survival of the United
States as a nation and there will not be such an immediate threat for
some time to come. This means that there is a finite window of
opportunity when there is no external adversary threatening the total
existence of American society; that our forces are far superior to any
possible military adversary choosing to confront us directly; and
that, with innovative thought, we may be able to create a more
relevant, effective, and efficient means to ensure for the common
defense at the likely levels of future spending.

At the same time that the Bosnia operation is underway, the
fundamental changes occurring at home and abroad must be addressed.
The industrial and technical base of the United States is changing
profoundly. The entrepreneurial and technical advantages of the
American economy were never greater and it is small business that is
creating virtually all new jobs and employment opportunities.
Commercial technology and products are turning over on ever shortening
cycles. Performance, especially in high-technology products, is
improving and costs are being driven downwards.

Sadly, the opposite trends are still found in the defense sector,
where cost is high and will create even tougher choices among
competing programs, especially as the budget shrinks. Cycle time to
field new generation capabilities is lengthening and performance,
especially in computer and information systems, is often obsolete on
delivery. The defense industrial base will continue to compress and it
is not clear that the necessary level of efficiencies or increases in
effectiveness in using this base can be identified and implemented,
suggesting further pressures on a defense budget that is only likely
to be cut.

Indeed, the question must be carefully examined of whether the
military platforms that served us so well in both cold and hot wars
such as tanks, fixed wing aircraft, and large surface ships and
submarines represent the most effective mix of numbers, technology,
strategic mobility, and fighting capability. Our national preference
for "attrition" and "force on forces" warfare continues to shape the
way we design and rationalize our military capability. Therefore, it
is no surprise that in dealing with the MRC, American doctrine, in
some ways, remains an extension of Cold War force planning. While the
magnitude and number of dangerous threats to the nation have been
remarkably reduced by the demise of the USSR, we continue to use
technology to fill traditional missions better rather than to identify
or produce new and more effective solutions for achieving military and
strategic/political objectives.

While there is much talk about "military revolutions" and winning the
"information war," what is generally meant in this lexicon and
discussion is translated into defense programs that relate to
accessing and "fusing" information across command, control,
intelligence, surveillance, target identification, and precision
strike technologies. What is most exciting among these revolutions is
the potential to achieve "dominant battlefield awareness," that is,
achieving the capability to have near-perfect knowledge and
information of the battlefield while depriving the adversary of that
capacity and producing "systems of systems" for this purpose.

The near and mid-term aims of these "revolutions" largely remain
directed at exploiting our advantages in firepower and on fielding
more effective ways of defeating an adversary's weapons systems and
infrastructure for using those systems. The doctrine of "decisive or
overwhelming force" is the conceptual and operational underpinning for
winning the next war based largely on this force-on-force and
attrition model, and winning the information war is vital to this end.
Few have asked whether the pattern of employing more modern technology
for traditional firepower solutions is the best one and if there are
alternative ways to achieve military objectives more effectively and
efficiently. In other words, can the idea of dominant battlefield
awareness be expanded doctrinally, operationally, and in terms of
fixing on alternative military, political, or strategic objectives?

Rapid Dominance, if realized as defined in this paper, would advance
the military revolution to new levels and possibly new dimensions.
Rapid Dominance extends across the entire "threat, strategy, force
structure, budget, infrastructure" formula with broad implications for
how we provide for the future common defense. Organization and
management of defense and defense resources should not be excluded
from this examination although, in this paper, they are not discussed
in detail.

The aim of Rapid Dominance is to affect the will, perception, and
understanding of the adversary to fit or respond to our strategic
policy ends through imposing a regime of Shock and Awe. Clearly, the
traditional military aim of destroying, defeating, or neutralizing the
adversary's military capability is a fundamental and necessary
component of Rapid Dominance. Our intent, however, is to field a range
of capabilities to induce sufficient Shock and Awe to render the
adversary impotent. This means that physical and psychological effects
must be obtained.

Rapid Dominance would therefore provide the ability to control, on an
immediate basis, the entire region of operational interest and the
environment, broadly defined, in and around that area of interest.
Beyond achieving decisive force and dominant battlefield awareness, we
envisage Rapid Dominance producing a capability that can more
effectively and efficiently achieve the stated political or military
objectives underwriting the use of force by rendering the adversary
completely impotent.

In Rapid Dominance, "rapid" means the ability to move quickly before
an adversary can react. This notion of rapidity applies throughout the
spectrum of combat from pre-conflict deployment to all stages of
battle and conflict resolution.

"Dominance" means the ability to affect and dominate an adversary's
will both physically and psychologically. Physical dominance includes
the ability to destroy, disarm, disrupt, neutralize, and to render
impotent. Psychological dominance means the ability to destroy,
defeat, and neuter the will of an adversary to resist; or convince the
adversary to accept our terms and aims short of using force. The
target is the adversary's will, perception, and understanding. The
principal mechanism for achieving this dominance is through imposing
sufficient conditions of "Shock and Awe" on the adversary to convince
or compel it to accept our strategic aims and military objectives.
Clearly, deception, confusion, misinformation, and disinformation,
perhaps in massive amounts, must be employed.

The key objective of Rapid Dominance is to impose this overwhelming
level of Shock and Awe against an adversary on an immediate or
sufficiently timely basis to paralyze its will to carry on. In crude
terms, Rapid Dominance would seize control of the environment and
paralyze or so overload an adversary's perceptions and understanding
of events that the enemy would be incapable of resistance at tactical
and strategic levels. An adversary would be rendered totally impotent
and vulnerable to our actions. To the degree that non-lethal weaponry
is useful, it would be incorporated in the ability to Shock and Awe
and achieve Rapid Dominance.

Theoretically, the magnitude of Shock and Awe Rapid Dominance seeks to
impose (in extreme cases) is the non-nuclear equivalent of the impact
that the atomic weapons dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki had on the
Japanese. The Japanese were prepared for suicidal resistance until
both nuclear bombs were used. The impact of those weapons was
sufficient to transform both the mindset of the average Japanese
citizen and the outlook of the leadership through this condition of
Shock and Awe. The Japanese simply could not comprehend the
destructive power carried by a single airplane. This incomprehension
produced a state of awe.

We believe that, in a parallel manner, revolutionary potential in
combining new doctrine and existing technology can produce systems
capable of yielding this level of Shock and Awe. In most or many
cases, this Shock and Awe may not necessitate imposing the full
destruction of either nuclear weapons or advanced conventional
technologies but must be underwritten by the ability to do so.

Achieving Rapid Dominance by virtue of applying Shock and Awe at the
appropriate level or levels is the next step in the evolution of a
doctrine for replacing or complementing overwhelming force. By way of
comparison, we have summarized how we view the differences between the
doctrines of Rapid Dominance and Decisive Force in terms of basic
elements that apply to the objectives, uses of force, force size,
scope, speed, casualties, and technique. We recognize that there will
be debate over the relative utility and applicability of these
doctrines and readers are encouraged to participate.

In considering the differences between the concepts of Rapid Dominance
and Decisive Force, it is important to define the terms as precisely
as possible.

The goals of achieving Rapid Dominance using Shock and Awe must be
compared with overwhelming force. "Rapid" implies the ability to "own"
the dimension of time-moving more quickly than an opponent, operating
within his decision cycle, and resolving conflict favorably in a short
period of time. "Dominance" means the ability to control a situation

Rapid Dominance must be all-encompassing. It will require the means to
anticipate and to counter all opposing moves. It will involve the
capability to deny an opponent things of critical value, and to convey
the unmistakable message that unconditional compliance is the only
available recourse. It will imply more than the direct application of
force. It will mean the ability to control the environment and to
master all levels of an opponent's activities to affect will,
perception, and understanding. This could include means of
communication, transportation, food production, water supply, and
other aspects of infrastructure as well as the denial of military
responses. Deception, misinformation, and disinformation are key
components in this assault on the will and understanding of the

Total mastery achieved at extraordinary speed and across tactical,
strategic, and political levels will destroy the will to resist. With
Rapid Dominance, the goal is to use our power with such compellance
that even the strongest of wills will be awed. Rapid Dominance will
strive to achieve a dominance that is so complete and victory is so
swift, that an adversary's losses in both manpower and material could
be relatively light, and yet the message is so unmistakable that
resistance would be seen as futile.

"Decisive Force," on the other hand, implies delivering massive enough
force to prevail. Decisive means using force with plenty of margin for
error. Force implies a traditional "force-on-force" and attrition
approach. This concept does not exclude psychological and other
complementary damage imposition techniques to enhance the application
of force; they have been used throughout the history of warfare. But
such non-destructive means would have an ancillary role. Military
force would be applied in a purer form and targeted primarily against
the military capabilities of an opponent. Time is not always an
essential component. As in _Desert Shield/Storm_, enough time would
have to be allowed to assemble an overwhelming force. Such a luxury is
not always feasible.

The differences become clearer if broken down into their essential

Elements    Rapid Dominance                  Decisive Force
Objective   Control the adversary's will,    Prevail militarily and
            perceptions, and understanding   decisively against a set of
                                             opposing capabilities defined
                                             by the MRC

Use of      Control the adversary's will,    Unquestioned ability to
Force       perceptions, and understanding   prevail militarily over an
            and literally make an adversary  opponent's forces and based
            impotent to act or react         against the adversary's

Force Size  Could be smaller than            Large, highly trained, and
            opposition, but with decisive    well-equipped. Materially
            edge in technology, training,    overwhelming
            and technique

Scope       All encompassing                 Force against force (and
                                             supporting capability)

Speed       Essential                        Desirable

Casualties  Could be relatively few in       Potentially higher on both
            number on both sides             sides

Technique   Paralyze, shock, unnerve, deny,  Systematic destruction of
            destroy                          military capability.
                                             applicable in some situations

Four general categories of core characteristics and capabilities have
been identified that Rapid Dominance-configured mission capability
packages must embrace. These are identified briefly and discussed in
later chapters.

First, Rapid Dominance seeks to maximize */knowledge/* of the
environment, of the adversary, and of our own forces on political,
strategic, economic, and military/operational levels. On one hand, we
want to get into the minds of the adversary far more deeply than we
have in the past. Beyond operational intelligence required for
battlefield awareness, Rapid Dominance means cultural understanding of
the adversary in ways that will affect both ours and their planning
and the outcome of the operation at all appropriate tactical and
strategic levels.

Second, Rapid Dominance must achieve */rapidity/* in the sense of
timeliness. Rapid Dominance must have capabilities that can be applied
swiftly and relatively faster than an adversary's.

Third, Rapid Dominance seeks to achieve total */control of the
environment/* from complete "signature management" of both our and the
adversary's information and intelligence to more discrete means to
deceive, disguise, and misinform.

Fourth, Rapid Dominance aims to achieve new levels of operational
competence that can virtually institutionalize */"brilliance."/* In
some cases, this may mean changing the longstanding principle of
military centralization and empowering individual soldiers, sailors,
and airmen to be crucial components in applying and directing the
application of force.

As we move to turn this concept into specific doctrine and
capabilities for future evaluation, there is another emerging reality
to consider. If the commercial-economic sector is transforming at the
current rate and breadth, it could be that, over the course of many
years, the defense industrial base would follow suit, or face
irrelevance and extinction. Clearly, there are certain areas in
defense which will never or may never be eliminated or replaced.
Nuclear systems are a current example.

Should this trend of commercial dominance play out, it may mean that
military force design and procurement will become dependent on the
private sector and commercial technology. Rapid Dominance is a first
conceptual step to deal with this possibility.

The purpose of this paper is to outline the beginnings of the concept
of Rapid Dominance, its concentration on strategy, technology and
innovation, and its focus on Shock and Awe. Based on this, subsequent
steps will involve expanding mission capability packages concepts
consisting of operations harmonized with doctrine, organization, and
systems and then move on to field prototype systems for further test
and evaluation as advanced concept technology demonstrations.

Background and Basis

In both relative and absolute terms, since the end of World War II,
the military strength and capability of the United States have never
been greater. Yet this condition of virtual military superiority has
created a paradox. Absent a massive threat or massive security
challenge, it is not clear that this military advantage can (always)
be translated into concrete political terms that advance American
interests. Nor is it clear that the current structure and foundations
for this extraordinary force can be sustained for the long term
without either spending more money or imposing major changes to this
structure that may exceed the capacity of our system to accommodate.
As a consequence, the success of the current design and configuration
of our forces may ironically become self-limiting and constraining.
That is not to claim automatically that there are better military
solutions or that the current defense program is not the best our
political system can produce. It is to say, however, that we are
well-advised to pursue alternate ideas and concepts to balance and
measure against the current and planned program.

To stimulate and intrigue the reader, we note at the outset that one
thrust of Rapid Dominance is to expand on the doctrine of overwhelming
or decisive force in both depth and breadth. To push the conceptual
envelope, we ask two sets of broad questions: Can a Rapid Dominance
force lead, for example, to a force structure that can win an MRC such
as _Desert Shield_ and _Desert Storm _far more quickly and cheaply
with far fewer personnel than our planned force both in terms of
stopping any invasion in its tracks and then ejecting the invader? Can
Rapid Dominance produce a force structure with more effective capacity
to deal with grey areas such as OOTW?

Second, if achievable, can Rapid Dominance lead to a form of political
deterrence in which the capacity to make impotent or "shut down" an
adversary can actually control behavior? What are the possible
political implications of this capability and what would this power
mean for conducting coalition war and for how our allies react and

Because Rapid Dominance is aimed at influencing the will, perception,
and understanding of an adversary rather than simply destroying
military capability, this focus must cause us to consider the broadest
spectrum of behavior, ours and theirs, and across all aspects of war
including intelligence, training, education, doctrine, industrial
capacity, and how we organize and manage defense.

We observe at first that even with the successful ending of the Cold
War, the response of the United States in re-evaluating its national
security and defense has been relatively and understandably modest and
cautious. In essence, while the size of the force has been reduced
from Cold War levels of 2.2 million active duty troops to about 1.5
million, and the services have been vocal in revising doctrine and
strategy to reflect the end of the Soviet threat, with the exception
of emphasis on jointness, there are few really fundamental differences
in the design and structure of the forces from even 10 or 15 years

Throughout the Cold War, the defense of the United States rested on
several central and widely accepted and publicly supported
propositions. The "clear and apparent danger" of the Soviet threat was
real and seen as such. The USSR was to be contained and deterred from
hostile action by a combination of political, strategic, and military
actions ranging from the forging of a ring of alliances surrounding
the USSR and its allies to the deployment of tens of thousands of
nuclear and thermonuclear weapons.

Following the truce ending the Korean War, a large, standing military
force was maintained and defined by the operational requirements of
fighting the large formations of military forces of the USSR and its
allies with similar types of military forces, albeit outnumbered. The
role of allies, principally NATO, was assumed and taken into account
in planning, although the paradox of the issue of planning for a long
versus short war in a nuclear world remained unresolved.

Mobilization, as in World War II, was likewise assumed if the Cold War
went hot while, at the same time, it was hoped that any war might be
ended quickly. The largely World War II defense, industrial, and
basing structure was retained along with the intent to rely on our
technological superiority to offset numerical or geographical

It was not by accident that this Cold War concept of defense through
mobilization was similar to the strategy that won the Second World War
and the literal ability of ultimately overwhelming the enemy using the
massive application of force, technology, and associated firepower.
Two decades later, Vietnam exposed the frailty of this approach of
dependence on massive application of firepower especially when
political limits were placed on applying that firepower.

Currently, _Desert Storm_ and the liberation of Kuwait in 1991 have
been taken as the examples that confirm the validity of the doctrine
of overwhelming or decisive force and of ensuring that both strategic
objectives and tactical methods were in congruence. We argue that now
is the time to re-examine these premises of reliance on overwhelming
or decisive force as currently employed and deployed in the force
structure if only as a prudent check.

Beyond prudence, however, it is clear that without a major threat to
generate consensus and to rally the country around defense and defense
spending, the military posture of the United States will erode as the
defense budget is cut. Hence, relying in the future on what is
currently seen to be as sufficient force to be "decisive" could easily
prove unachievable and the results problematic or worse for U.S.

The absence of a direct and daunting external security threat is, of
course, a most obvious aspect of the difficulty in defining the future
defense posture of the nation. The United States has long resisted
maintaining a large standing military and the Cold War years could
prove an aberration to that history. Extending this historical
observation of small standing forces, it is clear that there is no
adversary on the horizon even remotely approaching the military power
of the former USSR. While we might conjure up nominal regional
contingencies against Korea or Iraq as sensible planning scenarios for
establishing the building blocks for force structure, it will prove
difficult to sustain the current defense program over the long term
without a real threat materializing to rally and coalesce public
support. Allocating three percent or less of GDP for defense could
easily prove to be a ceiling and not a floor. It should be noted that
in Europe, defense spending is closing in on 1 to 2 percent of GDP.

Ironically, as the Department of Defense seeks to come to grips with
this new world, the structural limitations and constraints in how we
develop systems and procure weapons based on current technological and
industrial capacity for producing them will be exacerbated by downward
fiscal pressure giving us little room for mistakes and flexibility.
Air, land, space, and sea forces are currently limited in the actual
numbers and types of systems that are available for purchase and more
limited in that there are virtually no new major systems on the
horizon. That could change.

The M-1A-1 tank is in production only for foreign sales. Despite the
allure of the Arsenal Ship, the Navy still has only four active
classes of warships from which to replace its capability and, for the
first time this century since aircraft entered the inventory, is
without a new aircraft in development. The Air Force can be placed in
similar straits if the F-22 program is deferred or canceled because of
rising cost and fiscal constraints. Time will tell what happens to the
Joint Strike Fighter. Assumptions about reliance on technology and R&D
providing insurance policies for future defense needs may prove
ill-advised if and as DOD is forced to cut back and reduce those
programs even further. Indeed, over time, commercial R&D could become
the main source for procuring software and other systems needed to
upgrade today's weapons systems and for so-called "leap-ahead"
technologies that may prove elusive to create.

There is also the crucial issue of revising or indeed developing new
doctrine and military thought to deal with these changing
circumstances. But, without a compelling rationale and with the clear
bureaucratic and political pressures of preparing and defending an
annual budget, more of the same (or more likely, less of the same)
becomes an almost irresistible outcome. While the JCS or OSD or CINCs
may have genuine need for jointly packaged forces that are rapidly
deployable irrespective of Army, Navy, Marine, or Air Force labels,
the services cannot be expected to reverse the years of viewing the
world through service- specific arguments and doctrine.

Although the absolute danger has been dramatically reduced with the
end of the USSR, it would be the height of folly to assume that there
are no risks to the nation nor an absence of evil-doers wishing this
nation harm. It would also be shortsighted to expect that potential
adversaries are unintelligent and would not rely on superior knowledge
of their environment and simplicity to overcome our current military
and technical superiority much as the North Vietnamese did. In
addition, as technology diffuses around, over, and under borders, our
assumptions about guarantees of permanent technological superiority
should welcome thoughtful examination.

Lenin asked the question, "what is to be done?" As a start, the United
States should act to exploit the several major advantages it
possesses. First, we have time. The clarity and danger of future
threats is sufficiently removed for us to take a longer view. While we
may have deferred adding to the inventory of future systems in
development, current systems possess more than enough military
capability to get us through this transition period, even if this
period were to last for more than a decade. This does not mean we can
rest on our oars; if we take advantage of this opportunity, time is on
our side. If we squander this opportunity, then we could ultimately
find ourselves in trouble.

Second, the combination of American technical know-how, the luxury of
the best technically educated and trained society in the world, and
the entrepreneurial spirit of our system offers vast potential if we
are clever enough to exploit this extraordinary resource.

Third, because of significant changes in law and organization
regarding the military, particularly the Goldwater-Nichols Act, and
through a willingness to examine alternatives, the Department of
Defense has actively sought new ideas and concepts. The enhanced role
of the CINCs and the acceptance of jointness are positive
illustrations. Yet, for understandable structural and political
realities noted above, assuring productive innovation continues will
not be automatic. Against these conducive signs, vision, true joint
thinking, and tactical advances still are premium commodities to be
nourished and encouraged.

In building an alternative intellectual concept, it is useful to rely
on successful lessons of the past. For five decades, we have been
successful in applying containment and deterrence in the Cold War.
When deterrence or diplomacy failed as in Kuwait, then the use of
force was inevitable. A first-order issue is how can we augment or
improve the use of existing military capability should it be required.

Should force be needed, our proposal calls for establishing a regime
of Rapid Dominance throughout the area of strategic as well as
operational concern. By Rapid Dominance, we are seeking the capability
to dominate, control, and isolate the entire environment in, around,
over, and under the objective area as quickly as possible, and with
fewer forces than currently envisaged, although direct insertion of
forces is an important component depending upon the tactical
situation. In many cases, this capacity need not be the traditional
firepower solution of only physically destroying an adversary's
military capabilities. Our focus is on the Clausewitzian principle of
affecting the adversary's will to resist as the first order of
business, quickly if not nearly instantaneously. A second goal would
be to stop an attack during the first stages. A third goal, should it
be achievable, would be to promote a regime of political deterrence
that might restrain aggression in the first place.

To accomplish the rendering an adversary incapable of action means
neutralizing the ability to command; to provide logistics; to organize
society; and to function; as well as to control, regulate and deny the
adversary of information, intelligence, and understanding of what is
and what is not happening. This means we must control all necessary
intelligence and information on our forces-the ultimate form of
stealth-and on an adversary's forces as well and then exploit total
situational awareness for rapid action.

Regarding the emergence of current military thought and doctrine, as
implied earlier, warfare today may be in the early and far less mature
stages of a major revolution than is generally assumed. It is
understandable that despite major strategic reassessments, current
doctrine is still highly influenced by Cold War tactics and strategy
and perhaps by the iron grip of the history of conflict since the
early 19th century.

Since Napoleon, the conduct of war between major states has been
largely dominated by combining industrial might with vast amounts of
manpower over time and space. The United States advanced Napoleon's
use of industry and mass armies in the Civil War and our planning up
to the Cold War tended to follow this same pattern. World War II, of
course, exemplified the triumph of this industrial, mobilization, and
massive use of force approach.

In the evolution of U.S. military theory, it can be argued that this
model combining massive industrial might and manpower finally ended in
1989. Although, by then, technological advances to conventional
military capabilities seemed to be approaching the destructive power,
or more precisely, the system lethality of nuclear weapons. In other
words, modern non-nuclear precision weapons perhaps could produce
effects against enemy targets roughly comparable to the military
lethality of theater-level nuclear weapons. If this condition proves
true, could this new lethality fundamentally change the construct for
designing American doctrine and strategy? This question is at the
heart of the "precision and battlefield awareness" school of decisive
force thinking that believes that this fundamental change is in place.

Since the end of the Cold War and, with it, the end of the need to
prepare our forces to fight a more or less equally powerful adversary,
the United States military has conducted two post-Cold War crises
against lesser adversaries quite differently than it fought the Cold
War. In the Panama intervention in 1990 and in Kuwait shortly
thereafter, the suggestion of newer and different methods of warfare
was present. Perhaps both will turn out to be transition campaigns,
where there is much of the old, but also signs of the new. But there
are specific pieces of evidence that should command our attention.

Underlying the planning for _Operation Just Cause_ in Panama and
_Desert Shield/Storm_ in Kuwait was the premeditated incorporation of
a series of rapid, simultaneous attacks designed to apply decisive
force. The aim was to stun, and then rapidly defeat the enemy through
a series of carefully orchestrated land, sea, air, and special
operating forces strikes that took place nearly simultaneously across
a wide battle space and against many military targets. The purpose of
these rapid, simultaneous attacks was to produce immediate paralysis
of both the national state and its armed forces that would lead to
prompt neutralization and capitulation.

In both _Just Cause_ and _Desert Storm_, the United States (plus
coalition forces in _Desert Storm_) had such overwhelming military
capabilities that, in retrospect, the outcome was largely a matter of
drafting a cogent and coordinated operation plan based on using the
entire system of capabilities, and then executing that plan to produce
a decisive victory. The Haitian incursion in 1995 used similar
principles of intimidation to eliminate any real fighting. However, in
_Desert Storm_ unlike Haiti, it took the U.S. and its allies nearly 6
months to deploy over a half million troops before the fighting began.

The recently published JCS Pub 3.0 and the U.S. Army's 525-5 Pamphlet
reflect and exploit operational rapidity and simultaneity. Yet,
progress in these operational directions may be in danger of faltering
if only old Cold War yardsticks are used to make future force
investments and to direct studies about future force structure and
associated infrastructure. As in any transition period, innovation
must be joined by a willingness to experiment. This means the
establishment and cultivation of an experimental apparatus to test and
evaluate new concepts are matters of importance both to foster
innovation and assess its application.

We build on the trends of rapidity and simultaneity and seek to
emphasize control and time. Control is necessary to force behavioral
change in adversaries to achieve strategic or political ends. Control
and then influence come from a range of threats and outcomes,
including putting at risk the targets an adversary holds dear, to
imposing a hierarchy of Shock and Awe, to affecting will, perception,
and understanding. Achieving control may now be theoretically possible
in even more compressed or shortened time periods because of the
potential superiority of enhanced U.S. military capability and further
training and education. To obtain this level of military superiority
that can affect the adversary's will and perception, or at least
achieve the practical military consequences, a great deal of thought,
debate, and experimentation over new concepts will be needed if only
to test and validate contemporary doctrine.

If the political objective is to achieve a level of Shock and Awe
beyond only temporary paralysis, then further actions must follow. The
end point will be to dominate the enemy in such a way as to achieve
the desired objectives. From this concept follows the need to shut
down either a state or an organized enemy through the rapid and
simultaneous application (or threat of application) of land, sea, air,
space, and special operating forces against the broadest spectrum of
the adversary's power base and center or centers of gravity and
against the adversary's will and perception at tactical and strategic

In _Desert Storm_, the objectives were first to evict Iraqi forces
from Kuwait and then to restore the legitimate government. From these
objectives, more limited strategic and political objectives followed,
some for purposes of maintaining coalition solidarity and UN-imposed
sanctions. Not occupying Baghdad was one such political limitation.
These strategic objectives led to identification of the enemy's
centers of gravity as the basis for the application of force to
destroy these centers. This planning led to the repeated, rapid, and
simultaneous use of massive force with great effect.

One obvious tactical objective was to eliminate Saddam Hussein's
command and control. This was accomplished by simultaneous and massive
attacks. Once command and control was destroyed, Iraqi forces in the
Kuwait Theater of Operations (KTO) would be destroyed as quickly as
possible with overwhelming force and with minimum casualties. As
General Colin Powell simply stated, "My plan is to cut off Saddam's
army and then kill it."

There was no sanctuary for Iraqi forces in the KTO. They were
completely vulnerable to unrelenting and devastating attack. Outside
the KTO, targeting was more selective, not because the means were
unavailable for imposing sufficient damage but because our military
objectives were purposely limited. Given the effectiveness of the air
campaign and the overwhelming superiority on the ground, coalition
land forces required only 4 of the 41 days of the war to defeat and to
eject Iraq's forces from Kuwait.

Suppose a _Desert Storm_-type campaign were fought 20 years from now
based on a plan that exploited the concept of Rapid Dominance. Further
assume that Iraq has improved (and rebuilt) its military and that, in
a series of simultaneous and nearly instantaneous actions, our primary
objective was still to shut Iraq down, threaten or destroy its
leadership, and isolate and destroy its military forces as we did in
1991. However, two decades hence, Rapid Dominance might conceivably
achieve this objective in a matter of days (or perhaps hours) and not
after the 6 months or the 500,000 troops that were required in 1990 to
1991. Rapid Dominance may even offer the prospect of stopping an
invasion in its tracks.

Shutting the country down would entail both the physical destruction
of appropriate infrastructure and the shutdown and control of the flow
of all vital information and associated commerce so rapidly as to
achieve a level of national shock akin to the effect that dropping
nuclear weapons on Hiroshima and Nagasaki had on the Japanese.
Simultaneously, Iraq's armed forces would be paralyzed with the
neutralization or destruction of its capabilities. Deception,
disinformation, and misinformation would be applied massively.

This level of simultaneity and Rapid Dominance must also demonstrate
to the adversary our endurance and staying power, that is, the
capability to dominate over as much time as is necessary less an enemy
mistakenly try to wait it out and use time between attacks to recover
sufficiently. If the enemy still resisted, then conventional forms of
attack would follow resulting in the physical occupation of territory.
Control is thus best gained by the demonstrated ability to sustain the
stun effects of the initial rapid series of blows long enough to
affect the enemy's will and his means to continue. There must be
staying power effect on the enemy or they merely absorb the blows,
gain in confidence and their ability to resist, and change tactics
much as occurred during the WWII bombing campaigns and the air war
over North Vietnam.

Achieving these levels of Shock and Awe requires a wide versatility
and competence in employing land, sea, air, space, and special
operating forces and in investment in technology to produce Rapid
Dominance. Different methods for commanding the battle using both
hierarchical and non-hierarchical command to control and direct our
forces are likely to be required especially given the simultaneous
application of capabilities throughout the given battle space by the
full spectrum of our forces. To use these combinations of forces will
require adjustment of current service doctrine and prescribed roles
and functions. Rapid Dominance also means looking to invest in
technologies perhaps not fully or currently captured by the Cold War

To develop the proper combination of forces and future technology
investment for Rapid Dominance, extensive experimentation with this
core concept will be required. This exper-imentation must apply to all
levels of military educational institutions; it must be joint; it can
be accelerated by availability of recent advances in simulation
technology; and it must have operational trials in the field.

To advance this concept, technology and its infrastructure and
application are vital. Here, understanding several facts is important.
The U.S. today is graduating through its college and universities
system approximately 200,000 American and foreign scientists and
engineers per year. This is a great national resource. This technology
infrastructure is dimensions larger in number and scope than the
aggregate of anywhere else in the world. Through appreciation and
exploitation of this potential, a U.S. position of pre-eminence in
science and technology could be assured for the foreseeable future.

One adjunct of this technology revolution is in the information and
information management areas- which, in the U.S., are heavily
commercially oriented. Future military application may well be
analogous to the impact of the internal combustion engine and wireless
radio on land, sea, and air forces in the 1920s and 1930s. The size of
this technological lead between ourselves and the rest of the world,
especially in the base for new information products and services,
should widen further in knowledge and in application. The "Silicon
Valley" revolution is likely to continue increasing computer capacity
on an almost annual basis. By the year 2005, computing power should be
many fold times today's capacity-perhaps ultimately beginning to close
in on the ability of humans to handle data flow as well as the ability
to condense and synthesize data.

In parallel to advances in computing power will be the ability to
transfer information into and out of the hands of individual users.
The addition of virtual reality and other technical aids will enhance
and potentially quicken individual decision-making ability.
Technologies associated with bioscience and bioengineering are likely
to be of particular importance in enhancing these capabilities and are
also an area of American predominance. Material sciences, software,
and communications are all American strengths, and should remain so
well into the next century.

A significant element supporting this explosion in applied information
and other technologies is the American free enterprise system and its
entrepreneurial character. This drive is needed to translate this
technology into military hardware. The nature of the U.S. market and
its competitive basis reinforce this element. The largest challenges
may be to shape and exploit this commercial potential and then to
ensure that its enduring advantages become fundamental in the makeup
of our military forces. Unlike the defense industrial base required
during the Cold War, this new commercial base is neither heavy nor is
it a massive industry relying on producing large things. Indeed, its
edge has depended on getting "smaller, smarter, and cheaper."

The fundamental technology thrust for channeling this new American
industrial base to support Rapid Dominance must be toward the control
and management of everything that is significant to the operations
bearing on the particular Area of Interest (AOI). And we mean
everything! Control of the environment is far broader than only the
objective of achieving dominant battlefield awareness. Control means
the ability to change, to a greater or lesser degree, the "signatures"
of all of the combat forces engaged in the AOI. With this concept, the
operational frameworks in applying force across the entire spectrum of
platforms (satellites, aircraft, land vehicles, ships) can be measured
(and controlled) from many minus decibels of cross section, to many
plus decibels; communications can be entirely covert, i.e., many dB
less than the ambient environment, or that approaching "white noise."
The location of both the individual and his unit can be measured in
real time in meters, if not feet, anywhere in the world. Through
virtual reality, movement in three-dimensional grids over hundreds of
square kilometers, offer precise location and movement control, both
during day and night in conditions of unprecedented confidence. This
occurs in real time. Denying or deceiving the adversary, including
real-time manipulation of senses and inputs, is part of this control.

A Rapid Dominance-configured force would enter an AOI and immediately
control the operational/environmental signatures both individually and
in the aggregate. As needed, line and non-line-of-sight weapons of
near pin-point accuracy would be delivered across the entire area of
operation. Stealthy UAVs and mobile robotics systems, together with
decoys, would be deployed in large numbers for surveillance,
targeting, strike, and deception and would produce their own impact of
electronic Shock and Awe on the enemy. This application of force can
be done as rapidly as political and strategic conditions demand.

The effects mean literally "turning on and off" the "lights" that
enable any potential aggressor to see or appreciate the conditions and
events concerning his forces and, ultimately, his society. What is
radically different in Rapid Dominance is the comprehensive system
assemblage and integration of many evolving and even revolutionary
technical advances in dominant battlefield awareness squared-materials
application, sensor and signature control, computer and bioengineering
applied to massive amounts of data, enable weapon application with
simultaneity, precision, and lethality that to date have not been
applied as a total system. Deception, disinformation, and
misinformation will become major elements of this systemic approach.

The R&D reality is that technology advances will likely come from the
commercial world as the DOD base continues to shrink. It is clear that
in certain areas, DOD must remain involved where there is no private
R&D or to fill gaps in R&D. Warships, fighter aircraft, tanks, and
missile defense are examples. However, advances in commercial
technology in the Information Age are unlikely to be matched by DOD.

Of equal importance is how we train, organize, and educate our combat
officers and key enlisted personnel. Command must be geared to
achieving the best of the best-not the best among the good.
Assimilating in real time the vast amount of information and putting
information to use will no doubt lead to major changes in the
composition, competence, and authority of (even and especially)
individual military unit commanders perhaps to the squad or private
soldier level.

Of course, even with the most perfect information, an unqualified,
inexperienced, or unprepared military commander may not win except
with extraordinary luck or an incompetent foe. And, we repeat that
there are cases where NO military force may be able to succeed if the
objectives are unobtainable. The match of the entrepreneurial
individual with the potential of the technology base is key.
Optimizing and integrating all elements into a total system is a
certain way to exploit the opportunity that we can perceive becoming
more visible in the coming years.

Shock and Awe

The basis for Rapid Dominance rests in the ability to affect the will,
perception, and understanding of the adversary through imposing
sufficient Shock and Awe to achieve the necessary political,
strategic, and operational goals of the conflict or crisis that led to
the use of force. War, of course, in the broadest sense has been
characterized by Clausewitz to include substantial elements of "fog,
friction, and fear." In the Clausewitzian view, "shock and awe" were
necessary effects arising from application of military power and were
aimed at destroying the will of an adversary to resist. Earlier and
similar observations had been made by the great Chinese military
writer Sun Tzu around 500 B.C. Sun Tzu observed that disarming an
adversary before battle was joined was the most effective outcome a
commander could achieve. Sun Tzu was well aware of the crucial
importance of achieving Shock and Awe prior to, during, and in ending
battle. He also observed that "war is deception," implying that Shock
and Awe were greatly leveraged through clever, if not brilliant,
employment of force.

In Rapid Dominance, the aim of affecting the adversary's will,
understanding, and perception through achieving Shock and Awe is
multifaceted. To identify and present these facets, we need first to
examine the different aspects of and mechanisms by which Shock and Awe
affect an adversary. One recalls from old photographs and movie or
television screens, the comatose and glazed expressions of survivors
of the great bombardments of World War I and the attendant horrors and
death of trench warfare. These images and expressions of shock
transcend race, culture, and history. Indeed, TV coverage of _Desert
Storm_ vividly portrayed Iraqi soldiers registering these effects of
battlefield Shock and Awe.

In our excursion, we seek to determine whether and how Shock and Awe
can become sufficiently intimidating and compelling factors to force
or otherwise convince an adversary to accept our will in the
Clausewitzian sense, such that the strategic aims and military
objectives of the campaign will achieve a political end. Then, Shock
and Awe are linked to the four core characteristics that define Rapid
Dominance: knowledge, rapidity, brilliance, and control.

The first step in this process is to establish a hierarchy of
different types, models, and examples of Shock and Awe in order to
identify the principal mechanisms, aims, and aspects that
differentiate each model as unique or important. At this stage,
historical examples are offered. However, in subsequent stages, a task
will be to identify current and future examples to show the effects of
Shock and Awe. From this identification, the next step in this
methodology is to develop alternative mission capability packages
consisting of a concept of operations doctrine, tactics, force
structure, organizations, and systems to analyze and determine how
best each form or variant of Shock and Awe might be achieved. To
repeat, intimidation and compliance are the outputs we seek to obtain
by the threat of use or by the actual application of our alternative
force package. Then the mission capability package is examined in
conditions of both MRCs and OOTW.

For discussion purposes, nine examples representing differing
historical types, variants, and characteristics of Shock and Awe have
been derived. These examples are not exclusive categories and overlap
exists between and among them. The first example is "Overwhelming
Force," the doctrine and concept shaping today's American force
structure. The aims of this doctrine are to apply massive or
overwhelming force as quickly as possible on an adversary in order to
disarm, incapacitate, or render the enemy militarily impotent with as
few casualties and losses to ourselves and to non-combatants as
possible. The superiority of American forces, technically and
operationally, is crucial to successful application.

There are several major criticisms and potential weaknesses of this
approach. The first is its obvious reliance on large numbers of highly
capable (and expensive) platforms such as the M-1 tank, F-14,15, and
18 aircraft and CVN/DDG-51/SSN-688 ships designed principally to be
used jointly or individually to destroy and attrite other forces and
supporting capability. In other words, this example has principally
been derived from force-on-forces attrition relationships even though
command and control, logistical, and supporting forces cannot be
disaggregated from this doctrine.

The other major shortcoming of a force-on-force or a
platform-on-platform attrition basis is that with declining numbers of
worthy and well enough equipped adversaries against whom to apply this
doctrine, justifying it to a questioning Congress and public will
prove more difficult. While it is clear that "system of systems" and
other alternative military concepts are under consideration, for the
time being, these have not replaced the current platform and
force-on-force attrition orientation. It should be noted, there will
be no doctrinal alternatives unless ample effort is made to provide a
comprehensive and detailed examination of possible alternatives.

Second, this approach is based on ultimately projecting large amounts
of force. This requires significant logistical lift and the time to
transport the necessary forces. Rapidity may not always follow,
especially when it is necessary to deliver large quantities of
decisive force to remote or distant regions. Third, the costs of
maintaining a sufficiently decisive force may outstrip the money
provided to pay for the numbers of highly capable forces needed.
Finally, at a time when the commercial marketplace is increasing the
performance of its products while also lowering price and cycle time
to field newer generations systems, the opposite trends are still
endemic in the defense sector. This will compound the tension between
quality and quantity already cited. None of these shortcomings is
necessarily fatal. However, none should be dismissed without fuller

Certainly, Rapid Dominance seeks to achieve certain objectives that
are similar to those of current doctrine. A major distinction is that
Rapid Dominance envisages a wider application of force across a
broader spectrum of leverage points to impose Shock and Awe. This
breadth should lead to a more comprehensive and integrated interaction
among all the specific components and units that produce aggregate
military capability and must include training and education, as well
as new ways to exploit our technical and industrial capacity. It is
possible that in these resource, technical, and commercial industrial
areas that Rapid Dominance may provide particular utility that
otherwise may constrain the effectiveness of Decisive Force.

The second example is "Hiroshima and Nagasaki" noted earlier. The
intent here is to impose a regime of Shock and Awe through delivery of
instant, nearly incomprehensible levels of massive destruction
directed at influencing society writ large, meaning its leadership and
public, rather than targeting directly against military or strategic
objectives even with relatively few numbers or systems. The employment
of this capability against society and its values, called
"counter-value" in the nuclear deterrent jargon, is massively
destructive strikes directly at the public will of the adversary to
resist and, ideally or theoretically, would instantly or quickly
incapacitate that will over the space of a few hours or days.

The major flaws and shortcomings are severalfold and rest in
determining whether this magnitude and speed of destruction can
actually be achieved using non-nuclear systems to render an adversary
impotent; to destroy quickly the will to resist within acceptable and
probably unachievably low levels of societal destruction; and whether
a political decision would be taken in any case to use this type of
capability given the magnitude of the consequences and the risk of

It can be argued that in the bombing campaign of _Desert Storm_,
similar objectives were envisioned. The differences between this
example and _Desert Storm_ are through the totality of a society that
would be affected by a massive and indiscriminate regime of
destruction and the speed of imposing those strikes as occurred to
those Japanese cities. This example of shock, awe, and intimidation
rests on the proposition that such effects must occur in very short
periods of time.

The next example is "Massive Bombardment." This category of Shock and
Awe applies massive and, perhaps today, relatively precise destructive
power largely against military targets and related sectors over time.
It is unlikely to produce an immediate effect on the will of the
adversary to resist. In a sense, this is an endurance contest in which
the enemy is finally broken through exhaustion. However, it is the
cumulative effect of this application of destruction power that will
ultimately impose sufficient Shock and Awe, as well as perhaps destroy
the physical means to resist, that an adversary will be forced to
accept whatever terms may be imposed. As noted, trench warfare of the
First World War, the strategic bombing campaign in Europe of the
Second World War (which was not effective in this regard), and related
B-52 raids in Vietnam and especially over the New Year period of
1972-73, illustrate the application of massive bombardment.

Massive Bombardment, directed at largely military-strategic targets,
is indeed an aspect of applying "Overwhelming Force," even though
political constraints make this example most unlikely to be repeated
in the future. There is also the option of applying massive
destruction against purely civilian or "counter-value" targets such as
the firebombing of Tokyo in World War II when unconditionality marks
the terms of surrender. It is the cumulative impact of destruction on
the endurance and capacity of the adversary that ultimately affects
the will to resist that is the central foundation of this example.

The shortcoming with this example is clear, and rests in the question
of political feasibility and acceptability, and what circumstances
would be necessary to dictate and permit use of massive bombardment.
Outright invasion and aggression such as Iraq's attack against Kuwait
could clearly qualify as reasons to justify using this level of Shock
and Awe. However, as with Overwhelming Force, this response is not
time-sensitive and would require massive application of force for some
duration as well as political support.

Fourth is the "Blitzkreig" example. In real Blitzkreig, Shock and Awe
were not achieved through the massive application of firepower across
a broad front nor through the delivery of massive levels of force.
Instead, the intent was to apply precise, surgical amounts of tightly
focused force to achieve maximum leverage but with total economies of
scale. The German Wehrmacht's Blitzkreig was not a massive attack
across a very broad front, although the opponent may have been
deceived into believing that. Instead, the enemy's line was probed in
multiple locations and, wherever it could be most easily penetrated,
attack was concentrated in a narrow salient. The image is that of the
shaped charge, penetrating through a relatively tiny hole in a tank's
armor and then exploding outwardly to achieve a maximum cone of damage
against the unarmored or less protected innards.

To the degree that this example of achieving Shock and Awe is directed
against military targets, it requires skill if not brilliance in
execution, or nearly total incompetence in the adversary. The
adversary, finding front lines broken and the rear vulnerable, panics,
surrenders, or both. Hitler's campaign in France and Holland and the
seizure of the Dutch forts and the occupation of Crete in 1940 are
obvious illustrations. The use of Special Operations forces in
significant numbers is an adjunct to imposing this level of Shock and

_Desert Storm_ could have been a classic Blitzkreig maneuver if the
attack were mounted without the long preparatory bombardment and was
concentrated in a single sector-either the "left hook" or the Marine
attack "up the middle," and with total surprise. The major differences
between the operation in Kuwait and Germany's capture of France in
1940 were that the allies in Saudi Arabia had complete military and
technical superiority unlike the Germans and that, once under attack,
Iraq's front line collapsed virtually everywhere, giving the coalition
license to pick and choose the points for penetration and then
dominate the battle with fire and maneuver. The lesson for future
adversaries about the Blitzkreig example and the United States is that
they will face in us an opponent able to employ technically superior
forces with brilliance, speed, and vast leverage in achieving Shock
and Awe through the precise application of force.

It must also be noted that there are certainly situations such as
guerilla war where this or most means of employing force to obtain
Shock and Awe may simply prove inapplicable. For example, the German
Blitzkreig would have performed with the greatest difficulty in the
Vietnam War, where enemy forces had relatively few lines to be
penetrated or selectively savaged by this type of warfare.

The shortcomings of Blitzkrieg ironically rest in its strengths. Can
brilliance and superiority be maintained? Is there a flexible enough
infrastructure to ensure training to that standard, and can the
supporting industrial base continue to produce at acceptable costs the
systems to maintain this operational and technical superiority? Rapid
Dominance requires a positive answer to these questions, at least

The fifth example is named after the Chinese philosopher-warrior, Sun
Tzu. The "Sun Tzu" example is based on selective, instant decapitation
of military or societal targets to achieve Shock and Awe. This
discrete or precise nature of applying force differentiates this from
Hiroshima and Massive Destruction examples. Sun Tzu was brought before
Ho Lu, the King of Wu, who had read all of Sun Tzu's thirteen chapters
on war and proposed a test of Sun's military skills. Ho asked if the
rules applied to women. When the answer was yes, the king challenged
Sun Tzu to turn the royal concubines into a marching troop. The
concubines merely laughed at Sun Tzu until he had the head cut off the
head concubine. The ladies still could not bring themselves to take
the master's orders seriously. So, Sun Tzu had the head cut off a
second concubine. From that point on, so the story goes, the ladies
learned to march with the precision of a drill team.

The objectives of this example are to achieve Shock and Awe and hence
compliance or capitulation through very selective, utterly brutal and
ruthless, and rapid application of force to intimidate. The
fundamental values or lives are the principal targets and the aim is
to convince the majority that resistance is futile by targeting and
harming the few. Both society and the military are the targets. In a
sense, Sun Tzu attempts to achieve Hiroshima levels of Shock and Awe
but through far more selective and informed targeting. Decapitation is
merely one instrument. This model can easily fall outside the cultural
heritage and values of the U.S. for it to be useful without major
refinement. Shutting down an adversary's ability to "see" or to
communicate is another variant but without many historical examples to
show useful wartime applications.

A subset of the Sun Tzu example is the view that war is deception. In
this subset, the attempt is to deceive the enemy into what we wish the
enemy to perceive and thereby trick, cajole, induce, or force the
adversary. The thrust or target is the perception, understanding, and
knowledge of the adversary. In some ways, the ancient Trojan Horse is
an early example of deception. However, as we will see, the deception
model may have new foundations in the technological innovations that
are occurring and in our ability to control the environment.

The shortcomings with Sun Tzu are similar to those of the Massive
Destruction and the Blitzkreig examples. It is questionable that a
decision to employ American force this ruthlessly in quasi- or real
assassination will ever be made by the U.S. Further, the standard to
maintain the ability to perform these missions is high and dependent
on both resources and on supporting intelligence, especially human
intelligence-not an American strong point.

Britain's Special Air Service provides the SAS example and is distinct
from the Blitzkreig or Sun Tzu categories because it focuses on
depriving an adversary of its senses in order to impose Shock and Awe.
The image here is the hostage rescue team employing stun grenades to
incapacitate an adversary, but on a far larger scale. The stun grenade
produces blinding light and deafening noise. The result shocks and
confuses the adversary and makes him senseless. The aim in this
example of achieving Shock and Awe is to produce so much light and
sound or the converse, to deprive the adversary of all senses, and
therefore to disable and to disarm. Without senses, the adversary
becomes impotent and entirely vulnerable.

A huge "battlefield" stun grenade that encompasses large areas is a
dramatic if unachievable illustration. Perhaps a high altitude nuclear
detonation that blacks out virtually all electronic and electrical
equipment better describes the intended effect regardless of
likelihood of use. Depriving the enemy, in specific areas, of the
ability to communicate, observe, and to interact is a more reasonable
and perhaps more achievable variant. This deprival of senses,
including all electronics and substitution of false signals or data to
create this feeling of impotence, is another variant. Above all, Shock
and Awe are imposed instantly and the mechanism or target is
deprivation of the senses.

The shortcomings of the SAS approach mirror in part shortcomings of
other approaches. Technological solutions are crucial but may not be
conceivable outside the EMP effects of nuclear weapons. Intelligence
is clearly vital. Without precise knowledge of who and what are to be
stunned, this example will not work.

The sixth example of applying Shock and Awe is the "Haitian" example
(or to the purist, the Potemkin Village example). It is based on
imposing Shock and Awe through a show of force and indeed through
deception, misinformation, and disinformation and is different from
the U.S. intervention in Haiti in 1995. In the early 1800s, native
Haitians were seeking to extricate their country from French control.
The Haitian leaders staged a martial parade for the visiting French
military contingent and marched, reportedly, a hand full of battalions
repeatedly in review. The French were deceived into believing that the
native forces numbered in the tens of thousands and concluded that
French military action was futile and that its forces would be
overwhelmed. As a result, the Haitians were able to achieve their
freedom without firing a shot.

To be sure, there are points of similarity between the Haitian example
and the others. Deception, disinformation, and guile are more crucial
in this regime. However, the target or focus is the will and
perception of the intended target. Perhaps the Sun Tzu category comes
closest to this one except that while Sun Tzu is selective in applying
force, it is clear that imposing actual pain and shock are essential
ingredients and deception, disin-formation, and guile are secondary.
Demonstrative uses of force are also important. The issue is how to
determine what demonstrations will affect the perceptions of the
intended target in line with the overall political aims.

The weakness of this form of Shock and Awe is its major dependency on
intelligence. One must be certain that the will and perceptions of the
adversary can be manipulated. The classic misfire is the adversary who
is not impressed and, instead, is further provoked to action by the
unintended actions of the aggressor. Saddam Hussein and the Iraqis'
invasion of Kuwait demonstrate when this Potemkin Village model can
backfire. Saddam simply let his bluff be called.

The next example is that of "The Roman Legions." Achieving Shock and
Awe rests in the ability to deter and overpower an adversary through
the adversary's perception and fear of his vulnerability and our own
invincibility, even though applying ultimate retribution could take a
considerable period of time. The target set encompasses both military
and societal values. In occupying a vast empire stretching from the
Atlantic to the Red Sea, Rome could deploy relatively small number of
forces to secure each of these territories. In the first place, Roman
forces were far superior to native forces individually and
collectively. In the second place, if an untoward act occurred, the
perpetrator could rest assured that Roman vengeance ultimately would
take place. This was similar to British "Gunboat Diplomacy" of the
nineteenth century when the British fleet would return to the scene of
any crime against the crown and extract its retribution through the
wholesale destruction of offending villages.

There were several vital factors in Rome's ability to achieve Shock
and Awe. The invincibility of its Legions, or the perception of that
prowess, and the inevitability of retribution were among the most
significant factors. In other words, reprisals and the use of force to
exact a severe punishment, as well as the certainty that this sword of
Damocles would descend, were essential ingredients. The distinction
between this category and the others is the ex post facto nature of
achieving Shock and Awe. In the other categories, there is the need
for seizing the initiative and applying con-temporaneous force to
achieve Shock and Awe. With the Roman example, the Shock and Awe have
already been achieved. It is the breakdown of this regime or the rise
of new and as yet unbowed adversaries that leads to the reactive use
of force.

The major shortcoming is the assumption of the inevitability of
reprisals and the capacity to take punitive action. That is not and
may not always be the case with the United States, although we can
attempt to make others believe it will be. The takeover of the Embassy
in Tehran by dissident "students" in 1979 and American impotence in
the aftermath are suggestive of the shortcoming. That aside, the
example or perception of the invincibility of American military power
is not a bad one to embellish.

The next category for achieving Shock and Awe is termed the Decay and
Default model and is based on the imposition of societal breakdown
over a lengthy period but without the application of massive
destruction. This example is obviously not rapid but cumulative. In
this example, both military and societal values are targets. Selective
and focused force is applied. It is the long-term corrosive effects of
the continuing breakdown in the system and society that ultimately
compels an adversary to surrender or to accept terms. Shock and Awe
are therefore not immediate either in application or in producing the
end result. Economic embargoes, long-term policies that harass and
aggravate the adversary, and other types of punitive actions that do
not threaten the entire society but apply pressure as in the Chinese
water torture, a drop at a time, are the mechanisms. Finally, the
preoccupation with the decay and disruption of society produces a
variant of Shock and Awe in the form of frustration collapsing the
will to resist.

The significant weakness of this approach is time duration. In many
cases, the time required to impose such a regime of Shock and Awe is
unacceptably long or simply cannot be achieved by conventional or
politically acceptable means.

The final example is that of "The Royal Canadian Mounted Police,"
whose unofficial motto was "never send a man where you can send a
bullet." The distinction between this example and the others is that
this example is even more selective than Sun Tzu and implies that
standoff capabilities as opposed to forces in place can achieve the
required objectives. There should not be too fine a point, however, in
belaboring differences with the other examples in this regard over
standoff. A stealthy aircraft bombing unimpededly is not distinct from
a cruise missile fired at 1,000 miles regarding the effect of ordnance
on target.

A few observations about these examples offer insights on which to
test and evaluate means of applying Rapid Dominance. It is clear that
the targets in each category include military, civilian, industrial,
infrastructure, and societal components of a country or group. In
certain cases, time is the crucial consideration in imposing Shock and
Awe and in most of the examples, emphasis is on a rapid or sudden
imposition of Shock and Awe. However, in several examples, the effects
of Shock and Awe must be and are cumulative. They are either achieved
over time or achieved through earlier conditioning and experiences.
Not all of these categories are dependent on technology or on new
technological breakthroughs. What is relatively new or different is
the extent to which brilliance and competence in using force, in
understanding where an adversary's weak points lie and in executing
military operations with deftness, are vital. While this recognition
is not new, emphasis is crucial on exploiting brilliance and therefore
on the presumption that brilliance may be taught or institutionalized
and is not a function only of gifted individuals.

There is also a key distinction between selective or precise and
massive application of force. Technology, in the form of "zero CEP"
weapons, may provide the seemingly contradictory capability of systems
that are both precise and have the net consequence of imposing massive
disruption, destruction, or damage. This damage goes beyond the loss
of power grids and other easily identifiable industrial targeting
sets. Loss of all communications can have a massively destructive
impact even though physical destruction can be relatively limited.

In some of the examples, the objective is to apply brutal levels of
power and force to achieve Shock and Awe. In the attempt to keep war
"immaculate," at least in limiting collateral damage, one point should
not be forgotten. Above all, war is a nasty business or, as Sherman
put it, "war is hell." While there are surely humanitarian
considerations that cannot or should not be ignored, the ability to
Shock and Awe ultimately rests in the ability to frighten, scare,
intimidate, and disarm. The Clausewitzian dictum concerning the
violent nature of war is dismissed only at our peril.

For a policy maker in the White House or Pentagon and the concerned
Member of Congress with responsibility for providing for the common
defense, what lessons emerge from these examples and hierarchies?
First, there are always broader sets of operational concepts and
constructs available for achieving political objectives than may be
realized. Not all of these alternatives are necessarily better or
feasible. However, the examples suggest that further intellectual and
conceptual effort is a worthwhile investment in dealing with national
security options in the future.

Second, time becomes an opportunity as well as a constraint in
generating new thinking. In many past cases, time was generally viewed
as an adversary. We had to race against several clocks to arrive
"firstest with the mostest," to prevent an enemy from advancing, or to
ensure we had ample forces on station should they be required. Rapid
Dominance would alleviate many of these constraints as we would have
the capacity to deploy effective forces far more quickly. Therefore,
in this case, we can view time as an ally. The political issue rests
in longstanding arguments to limit the President from having the
capacity to deploy or use force quickly, thereby involving the nation
without conferring with full consultation with Congress. While this is
an obvious point, it should not eliminate alternative types of force
packages derived from Rapid Dominance from full consideration and
experimentation. Indeed, our experience with nuclear weapons and
emergency release procedures shows that delegating instant
presidential authority can be handled responsibly.

Responding to the precise, rapid, and massive criteria of several
models, it is clear that one capability not presently in the arsenal
is a "zero-CEP" weapon, meaning one that is precise and timely. It is
also clear that, while deception, guile, and brilliance are important
attributes in war, there are no guarantees that they can be
institutionalized in any military force.

Another capability that Rapid Dominance would stress relates to the
Sun Tzu example. Suppose there are "EMP-like" or High Powered
Microwave (HPM) systems that can be fielded and provide broad ability
to incapacitate even a relatively primitive society. In using these
weapons, the nerve centers of that society would be attacked rather
than using this illustrative system to achieve hard target kill
because there were few hard targets. To be sure, HPM and EMP-like
systems have been and are being carefully researched.

Finally, to return to the idea that deception, disinformation, and
misinformation are crucial aspects of waging war, Rapid Dominance
would seek to achieve several further capabilities. By using complete
signature management, larger formations could be made to look like
smaller and smaller formations made to seem larger. At sea, carrier
battle groups could be disguised and smaller warships could be made to
appear as large formations. This signature management would apply
across the entire spectrum of the senses and not just radar or
electronic ranges. Indeed, gaining the ability to regulate what
information and intelligence are both available and not available to
the adversary is a key aim. This is more than denial or deception. It
is control in the fullest sense of the word.

The next step is to match the four significant characteristics that
define Rapid Dominance- knowledge, rapidity, brilliance, and
control-with Shock and Awe against achievable military objectives in
order to derive suitable strategies and doctrines, configure forces
and force packages accordingly, and determine those integrated systems
and innovative uses of technologies and capabilities that will provide
the necessary means to achieve these objectives in conditions that
include both the MRC and OOTW.

Strategic, Policy, and Operational Application

In assessing the future utility and applicability of Rapid Dominance,
it is crucial to consider the political context in which force is
likely to be employed. As we enter the next century, the probability
is low that an overriding, massive, direct threat posed by a
peer-competitor to the U.S. will emerge in the near term. Without
compelling reasons, public tolerance toward American sacrifice abroad
will remain low and may even decrease. This reluctance on the part of
Americans to tolerate pain is directly correlated to perceptions of
threat to U.S. interests. Without a clear and present danger, the
definition of national interest may remain narrow.

Americans have always appreciated rapid and decisive military
solutions. But, many challenges or crises in the future are likely to
be marginal to U.S. interests and therefore may not be resolvable
before American political staying power is exhausted. In this period,
political micro-management and fine tuning are likely to be even more
prevalent as administrations respond to public sentiments for
minimizing casualties and, without a threat or compelling reason, U.S.

Future actions and measures may likely reflect "politically correct"
alternatives. In 1991, the Gulf War came close to presenting the
nearly optimal situation for prosecution to a decisive and
irreversible conclusion. Such a course, however, was not politically
feasible because it would have shattered the allied coalition while
exceeding the authority of the UN mandate. Military operations that
impact across a whole population or cause "innocent civilians" to
suffer (e.g., some economic sanctions, collateral damage from raids)
also are likely to be only politically acceptable in aggravated
situations. For example, if economic sanctions cause malnutrition or
other health problems or collateral damage from bombing or shelling
impacts hospitals, schools, orphanages, or refugee camps, the policy
may be the ultimate victim.

The U.S. military is more likely to find itself in a supporting
foreign policy role with discrete missions that are only one facet of
a larger political context. This context is almost certainly going to
expand into militarily grey areas of OOTW, including those impinging
on law enforcement and ensuring political stability. Forces may be
called upon to deal with or control situations on the margin rather
than to achieve total submission or defeat of an opponent. The
prevailing political preference is likely to continue to be to try to
bound these complex challenges through fine tuning, artificial
constructs, and discretely limited tasks, often performed in the midst
of internal conflict. Economic sanctions (e.g., Serbia, Iraq), "no
fly" zones (e.g., Southern and Northern Iraq and Bosnia), "safe
havens" (e.g., Bosnia), humanitarian relief delivered by "all means
necessary" (e.g., Somalia, Bosnia), and embassy protection and
evacuation (e.g., Liberia in 1991 and again in 1996) are the kinds of
OOTW tasks more likely to be assigned by policy makers. Such tasks
tend to be inconclusive and of long duration. They also increase
vulnerability to terrorist attack such as the bombing of the Kolbah
Barracks in Riyadh in June 1996.

Americans prefer not to intervene, especially when the direct threat
to the U.S. is ambiguous, tenuous, or difficult to define. Therefore,
when intervention is necessary there is likely to be both a political
and practical imperative to have allied or international involvement
or at least the political cover of the UN, NATO, or appropriate NGOs.

As more states (and sub-national groups) acquire nuclear, chemical,
and biological weapons of mass destruction (WMD) capabilities and
longer range delivery means, the ability for rogues to inflict pain
will increase as will the ability to ratchet up the political risks.
WMD can easily complicate our ability to influence positive and
constructive behavior of possessors. Because of the threat of
retaliation, WMD capabilities may become politically acceptable
targets provided collateral damage to civilians is minimized.
Preemption may become a more realistic option along the lines of
Israel's strikes against Syria's nuclear reactors in 1982. It is,
however, a responsible state's worst nightmare to have successfully
struck a chemical, biological, or nuclear production facility with
precision only to learn the next day that hundreds of civilians have
been killed due to the inadvertent release of chemical, biological, or
nuclear materials.

There must also be an appropriate political context that justifies the
use of preemptive force, as opposed to less destructive or non-lethal
types of sanctions (e.g., responses to terrorism in the case of Libya,
invasion of Kuwait by Iraq, exports of WMD to a threatening country
such as Iran, the North Korean threat to South Korea and Japan).

The U.S. will, nevertheless, need to maintain the capability to deter
and defeat both strategic and other direct threats to its vital
interests, preferably on a decisive basis. In an unsettled, less
structured, and volatile world, the ability to use force with
precision, effectiveness, impunity, and, when needed, rapidity, will
still be a powerful influence on cooperation, stability, and, where
relevant, submission.

Imposing Rapid Dominance on a nation, group, or situation, if
achievable, will be a highly desirable and relevant asset in this
turbulent period. Bosnia offers an example. At the outset of the
breakup of Yugoslavia, if we had had this type of capability, without
potentially high costs, to counter effectively the widely predicted
invasion of Bosnia, the U.S. strategy for dealing with that tangled
and messy situation might have been much different. Thousands of lives
might have been spared. In other grey or marginal situations Rapid
Dominance could make the difference between a politically acceptable
response or inadequate action with consequences similar to what
happened in Bosnia.

In considering how Rapid Dominance might apply and might be used, it
is first important to know what it is that we want to achieve with
military force. We need to consider whether the application of force
will allow us to influence and control an adversary's will or merely
exacerbate a bad situation. Therefore, it is essential to know what is
of value to that adversary. An objective, realistic, and in-depth
situational grasp will be essential to such an understanding. For
example, disarming or destroying may produce unintended consequences.
For a conventional foe that values its military and depends on
technology, Rapid Dominance should be particularly effective and
persuasive. In the case of less developed nations, however, the
opportunity for exercising influence in this way and against military
formations may be considerably less and must be carefully assessed.

As noted, in cases of marginal direct threats to U.S. security, the
cost in casualties needs to be low. To be effective, we must take away
an opponent's ability to make it cost us in terms of casualty levels
we consider intolerable. In applying Rapid Dominance we also must be
defending something which is of value to us. The lower the value in
terms of our national interests, the lower the price we are likely to
be willing to pay.

In MRC situations, we need to have the capability to defeat, destroy,
or incapacitate an opponent. On the other hand, in OOTW, other
non-military factors are likely to be involved and goals made more
limited. For example, it may be necessary to intimidate or capture the
leadership in order to restore order or reverse an action, or it may
simply be necessary to anticipate, prevent, and counter opposition to
conduct of a more limited mission (e.g., feeding the starving or
protecting innocent people from genocide).

In U.S. planning for OOTW, it is a virtual given that risk will be
minimized and there will be a discrete and proportional use of force
with minimal collateral damage. This means that there must be a belief
that a mission can be accomplished and is worth the resources
necessary to do so. Before initiating action in these often confusing
situations, objectives must be clearly established and, once engaged,
there should be a willingness to persevere through the inevitable
rough patches.

Whether in an MRC or in OOTW, we first will need to know what we want
to achieve with Rapid Dominance. This is a task for political
leadership which is informed with military advice concerning what is
feasible, what is not, and what is uncertain. The extent of the
mission must be clearly defined. Is it to defeat an enemy so it will
no longer pose a threat? Do we only need to stop an adversary from
carrying out a particular act? Must we control a situation entirely or
only sufficiently to be able to carry out a specific mission? Can we
really affect the adversary's will?

Recent events give us examples of outcomes likely to be relevant in
the future. MRCs call for the full spectrum of outcomes-from reversing
military action (e.g., the invasion of Kuwait); to establishing a
government more acceptable to the U.S. and the world, probably using
military coercion (Haiti, Panama); to eliminating a threat to the U.S.
or its allies. We may want to persuade an adversary to cease an
aggression or act of interference or otherwise change behavior we
cannot accept or tolerate. Political expectations in MRCs are for the
effective use of force and for rapid success or at least steady
progress. Casualties should be moderate or at least acceptable, with
the threshold of American pain dependent on the directness of the
threat to U.S. interests and with the degree of compellance
appropriate to the political rationale.

OOTW present a different set of challenges. These challenges are
likely to require discrete dominance of specific circumstances rather
than total dominance. The general tasks may include a wide variety of
requirements. For example, it may be necessary to try to prevent or
stop genocide (e.g., Rwanda) and ethnic cleansing (e.g., Bosnia). The
task may be to cooperate with a humanitarian relief effort (e.g.,
prevention of starvation in Somalia or Bosnia). The goal of employing
force may be free and fair elections (e.g., Cambodia, Bosnia). The
requirement could be to destroy a limited objective (e.g., an
above-ground or underground chemical weapons plant or documented
nuclear weapons facilities developed by hostile or unfriendly states).

Other tasks could simply be to preserve international rights (e.g.,
protecting the neutral shipping of the western oil flow in the Gulf
during the Iran-Iraq war). A more testing challenge might be to
accomplish a limited political goal (e.g., gesture to deal with
Israeli incursion in Lebanon in 1982). We undoubtedly will face the
future requirement to reverse a potential threat to Americans or to a
region of importance with a limited military action (e.g., in Grenada
in 1983 or the Mayaguez rescue in Cambodia in 1975). Discrete moves to
bolster preventive diplomacy and/or overt measures to demonstrate
preparedness to assist (e.g., forces sent to Sudan to support Chad
under threat of invasion from Libya and recent Navy operations in the
Taiwan Strait) will still be relevant.

Countering terrorism also will be part of a continuing agenda (hostage
rescue-e.g., Iran, Lebanon; hijacking-e.g., _Achille Lauro_; deterrent
to further moves-e.g., the Higgins operation, Libyan raids, missile
attack on Iraq after the threat to former President Bush). We may also
need to interdict weapons, terrorists, or other discrete cargoes
moving between nations (e.g., North Korean missile shipments to Iran,
Iranian and Libyan arms exchanges).

Economic sanctions are likely to continue to be a preferable political
alternative or a necessary political prelude to an offensive military
step (e.g., implemented as the first step in actions to counter
Libyan-sponsored terrorism; tried first as an alternative to war with
Iraq; used ineffectively against the Serbs to try to convince them not
to continue to support Bosnian Serb aggression; and tried with Haiti
as an unsuccessful alternative to occupation). Our past experience has
been that we seldom have had decisive or immediate results from these
economic measures, sanctions, and embargoes. Considerable time is
required to have impact and we have not been particularly efficient in
controlling the leakage and spillover in these situations. Sanctions
almost always require full international cooperation which cannot be
assumed or guaranteed. In Bosnia, of course, some portions of the arms
embargo were deliberately allowed to be permeable and the U.S. turned
a blind eye to Iran's support of the Bosnians.

Past experience also has taught us some relevant lessons about the
potential of Shock and Awe. Improvements in the capabilities enhancing
these outcomes could make a decisive difference in dealing with future
challenges. History also cautions us as well that there will be
restraints in employing Rapid Dominance and that there are fundamental
differences in MRC and OOTW applications.

Shock and Awe, when properly applied, have been very effective in the
past. They will be effective in the future, even when applied in
limited ways that do not reflect the more encompassing impact
envisioned by Rapid Dominance. There are many examples of how a very
limited application of force made a significant difference through the
mechanisms of Shock and Awe. Experiences, including successes and
failures, illustrate some of the potential of Rapid Dominance if
implemented effectively.

The Vietnam War provides certain lessons. When B-52 strikes, which
made the ground rumble, were added to the equation during the
Christmas 1972 bombing of Hanoi, dragging negotiations with the North
Vietnamese on a peace agreement moved swiftly to an acceptable
conclusion. Daily reports following the controversial B-52 "carpet"
bombing raids in Cambodia talked of North Vietnamese/Vietcong soldiers
wandering around in a daze due to shock and concussion. Both B-52s and
naval gunfire, especially from 16 inch guns of a battleship, had a
similar impact on invading North Vietnamese troop concentrations. The
mining of Haiphong Harbor, although initiated late in the war, was
equally effective in immediately stopping shipping in and out of North

When President Nixon wanted to deal with the perplexing problems of
our POWs and failing domestic morale, as well as take away substantial
political leverage from the North Vietnamese, he directed the raid to
rescue prisoners jailed just outside Hanoi. The raid itself was well
executed. American forces reached and searched the prison and returned
safely. But no Americans were freed because a last minute transfer of
the POWs from the prison had not been detected. If there had been
prisoners still there to be rescued, the operation would have been a
highly dramatic and influential event. The point is that accurate and
timely intelligence remains crucial.

There seems to be little doubt that the combined F-111 and naval air
strike against Libya in 1986 in response to the discotheque terrorist
attack in Germany gave Gadhafi pause. The perception that he
personally might be targeted appeared to get Gadhafi's attention.

When our troops were having difficulty dislodging Grenadian soldiers
from their main fortress, Marine tanks were sailed around the island
to confront them. At the sight of tank guns, the seemingly stubborn
occupants surrendered almost immediately without a fight.

The cease fire in the bloody Iran-Iraq war was quick to follow after
the commencement of daily Iraqi long-range rocket bombardments of
Tehran that amounted to a reign of terror. Given that both sides were
exhausted at that point, a show of force could have been convincing.
Strong U.S. action in response to Iran's mining of neutral waters may
also have had a sobering effect on the mullahs. Not only were Iran's
vulnerable oil-producing platforms in the Gulf boarded and destroyed
with impunity by the U.S., but Iranian naval forces that had come out
to challenge the U.S. Navy were destroyed. Iraq's reign of terror, and
the strong American message to Iran, possibly helped end the war.

In our troublesome stay in Somalia, AC-130 gunships earned immediate
respect from potential troublemakers with their ability to see wide
areas night or day, remain on station for hours as night patrols, and
strike with precision and relative impunity. The methodical drone of
AC-130s circling in the air was enough to restore some order, although
a few civilians found the noise unsettling. In another situation, the
aftermath of systematic UN efforts to destroy faction leader Mohamed
Aideed's illegal arms facilities generated an unexpected reaction from
other warlords, including those colluding with him, which was to
volunteer to hand over their own weapons storage areas. For a fleeting
moment, Shock and Awe created an important opportunity.

During the many vagaries of the Bosnia tragedy, it would appear that
when NATO accurately delivered potent doses of air power, rather than
occasional pin pricks, the Serbs seemed finally to understand that an
appearance of cooperation rather than defiance was in their interest.
This NATO message in the form of air power, of course, was
strengthened by the effectiveness of the accompanying Croatian/Muslim
counter-offensive and the fatigue of Bosnian Serb fighters. Sustaining
the shock effect with forces on the ground was a necessary combination
to gain the staying power effect to change the will of the Serbs. It
was not accomplished by air alone. Timing remains important.

Past failures also offer examples of how Rapid Dominance might have
made a difference in reacting to those difficult situations. Rapid
Dominance might have provided a better response to those setbacks or
might have offered a more effective alternative that would have
avoided the vulnerabilities in those situations in the first place
(e.g., Bay of Pigs, Iran embassy rescue in 1980, Lebanon Marine
barracks bombing in 1983, response to the Pueblo seizure by North
Korea in 1968, and the reaction to the downed helicopters during the
Ranger raid in Somalia).

We should also learn from other states who have demonstrated effective
application of the characteristics of Rapid Dominance. Israel's rout
of Syria's air force and missile defenses in Lebanon's Baaka Valley
shows how dramatic success can have political spillover. On the other
hand, Japan's surprise attack on Pearl Harbor produced the reverse
effects of Shock and Awe and had the unintended consequence of
galvanizing the U.S. into action.

Even without a Rapid Dominance capability or when facing a more
technologically dependent opponent, it is clear from these examples
and many others in recent U.S. experiences that certain improvements
in capabilities would provide us with greater flexibility in the
future. This is especially true in OOTW situations, which require a
multiplicity of effective instruments at our disposal. It is also true
that certain operations such as peacekeeping tend to be manpower

If we are to stay ahead of an adversary and deny things of value to
that adversary, dynamic, accurate, and integrated intelligence is
essential. Intelligence needs to move to levels unprecedented in
scope, timeliness, accuracy, and availability in real time. The Gulf
War, despite its success, showed classic limitations in intelligence.
Even though we had nearly every intelligence asset designed to deal
with the USSR available for use, we were unable to detect the full
extent of Iraq's WMD capability; unable to find mobile missile
launchers even with a major expenditure of on-scene assets; in some
cases, we could only "see" kilometers in front of our advancing
forces; and we mistakenly attacked targets we thought were legitimate
but had civilians inside. In some instances, only reliable human
intelligence may provide the necessary information (for example, in
order to understand what is happening in deep underground facilities).

Another important capability we should try to achieve in the future is
the ability to intimidate, capture, convince, or significantly
influence the perceptions and understanding of individual
troublemakers. This need has been demonstrated repeatedly in recent
years (e.g., Gadhafi in Libya, Aideed in Somalia, Saddam Hussein in
Iraq, Noreiga in Panama). Such a perception is particularly relevant
when the problem appears not to be caused by a unified population but
by the ambitions of individual leaders who have intimidated or killed
off any likely internal opposition. Such a capability requires
effective real-time intelligence and a variety of methods for
accomplishing the task (from exceptionally precise weapons to
effective "snatch" operations).

In a world in which non-lethal sanctions are a political imperative,
we will continue to need the ability to shut down all commerce into
and out of any country from shipping, air, rail, and roads. We ought
to be able to do this in a much more thorough, decisive, and shocking
way than we have in the past. The ability to apply pressure or cause
acquiescence employing non-lethal means also will be important in some
circumstances. Weapons that shock and awe, stun and paralyze, but do
not kill in significant numbers may be the only ones that are
politically acceptable in the future. This also means that crowd
control with minimum violence may be needed. In certain circumstances,
the costs of having to resort to lethal force may be too politically
expensive in terms of local support as well as support in the U.S. and

As is already well recognized, we need to be able to shut down key
electronic communications to, from, and within a country (or within a
specific sub-group or faction). We also need the ability to control
radio and television within a country. It is important, however, in
all cases, to be able to deny an adversary's ability to communicate
and to have our own means of reaching the population with appropriate

In addition to being able to eliminate military capabilities
selectively, including weapons systems, overt and covert stockpiles,
fuel, WMD, and related logistics, we will need to have the capability
selectively to incapacitate, neutralize, or destroy other things
considered of great value to opponents. Increased targeting precision
will compound effectiveness as well as help to avoid the political
pitfalls of using force such as the inevitable, unintended collateral
damage that has been the pattern of the past.

More surgical and carefully crafted applications of force, however,
will only partially reduce the restraints and limits on utilizing
Rapid Dominance in MRCs and OOTW. There are substantial differences in
the political constraints likely to be imposed in dealing with MRCs
and with OOTW. For example, there is much greater latitude to use
dominant force and Shock and Awe in MRCs than in OOTW.

In MRC situations, we are often likely to face conventional powers
which are well organized, well equipped, and broadly dependent on
technology. Although more powerful, these developed states are also
likely to be especially vulnerable to a technologically sophisticated
approach such as Rapid Dominance as long as we maintain this military
edge and the ability to neutralize their military systems. Even in the
most compelling circumstance where a Rapid Dominance force is used,
however, support from other nations will be politically desirable.

In most circumstances there will be limits to the targets of value to
an adversary which can be destroyed as well as to the numbers and
types of weapons that can be employed. For example, the political
circumstances in which nuclear weapons could be employed are quite
limited. In both MRCs and OOTW, certain actions are politically as
well as morally unacceptable except in extreme cases. Such
restrictions are likely to apply to targets affecting control of
access to food, water, and clean air, and to destruction of religious
and cultural centers, even if there is low collateral damage.

In OOTW situations, we are much more vulnerable to criticism of using
excessive force, especially if there is civilian or collateral damage.
The concept of proportionality is likely to remain an operative
principle in U.S. policy and may be taken to extremes, especially if
the marginal nature of a situation leads to a marginal and ineffective
response. Some people, both military and civilian, even argue that
superior technology should not be employed in such situations and that
an adversary should be fought on his own terms. While such arguments
should be rejected, they nonetheless sometimes have a political
influence that must be considered. We should always use technology to
minimize our casualties, give us every advantage, reduce collateral
damage, and make us look more formidable. At the same time, there
needs to be sufficient provocation to warrant destruction or denial.
Our actions must always be consistent with our own system of values.

The "rapid" component of Rapid Dominance is one of the most appealing
aspects of the concept, both politically and militarily. The ability
to take action that is timely and decisive multiplies substantially
the chances of ultimate success. Action needs to be taken precisely
when it will have greatest impact. Often initial public outrage and
political support for action in response to a provocation subsides if
a prolonged buildup is necessary in order to prepare to take action.

The ability to react faster than an adversary, to assimilate
information and act on it effectively, is also an important advantage.
In a NATO region-wide dynamic computer war game a few years ago, it
was clear that the simulated enemy was advancing faster than the
defensive chain of command could make counter moves. The tradition of
sending decisions up the line was simply too slow to cope with the
dynamic challenge posed by the adversary. Commanders on scene lacked
the authority to respond and adjust to rapidly changing situations.
The exercise graphically demonstrated to the country involved the need
to institute fundamental command and control streamlining. It also
demonstrated the advantages of being able to make local decisions in
real time while still effectively coordinating and optimizing the
overall effort.

The Navy's "command by negation" concept evolved in the 1980s in order
to deal with the rapidity of the air/missile threat and the need to
integrate dynamically the offensive and defensive missile, air, sea,
and undersea capabilities of a battle group and its joint components
(e.g., AWACs). This concept was one way of solving the time problem
while keeping the overall commander in the picture. The commander
could then intervene and modify actions as necessary to conform to the
broader strategy. This type of control was helped by the evolution of
electronic links and secure communications and the availability of

Commanders employing Rapid Dominance will need to orchestrate it using
similar principles, while applying greater selective ability to turn
on and off a variety of systems, sensors, and devices influencing the
whole operational picture. Technology should also give commanders a
much better grasp of what is evolving during a battle. Just as the
American military of today has made "owning the night" part of its
tactical advantage, "owning" the dimension of time will be critical to
the success of Rapid Dominance.

In conceptual terms, the following is suggestive of a future force
configuration and the design of a mission capability package (MCP)
based on Rapid Dominance.

Operational Construct

Rapid Dominance is based on affecting the adversary's will,
perception, and knowledge through imposing sufficient Shock and Awe to
overcome resistance, allowing us to achieve our aims. Four
characteristics are vital: knowledge, rapidity, brilliance, and
control of the environment.

Application of all or of selective capabilities within the Rapid
Dominance systems of systems will then decisively direct the
application of military/defense resources and produce the requisite
outcome. Rapid Dominance envisages the execution of specific actions
in real or near real time to counter actions or intentions deemed
detrimental to U.S. interests. On the high end of conflict, Rapid
Dominance would introduce a reaction of Shock and Awe in areas of
highest value to the threatening individual, group, or state. In many
cases, prior understanding of the power of Rapid Dominance would act
as a deterrent to the objectionable action. When used, Rapid Dominance
would ensure favorable early resolution of issues with minimal loss of
lives and collateral damage. The concept theoretically should be able
to impact adversarial situations that apply across the board to high,
mid, low, no, or minimal technology threats.

Rapid Dominance expands the art of joint combined arms war fighting
capabilities to a new level. Rapid Dominance requires a sophisticated,
interconnected, and interoperable grid of netted intelligence,
surveillance, reconnaissance, communications systems, data analysis,
and real-time deliverable actionable information to the shooter. This
network must provide total situational awareness and supporting nodal
analysis that enables U.S. forces to act inside the adversary's
decision loop in a manner that on the high end produces Shock and Awe
among the threat parties. Properly detailed nodal analysis of this
knowledge grid will enable the shutting down of specific functions or
all essential functions near simultaneously. This will often times be
netted pieces of data where the sum of the parts gives the answer and
the battlefield advantage to the force possessing this rapidly netted

The "rapid" part of the equation becomes the ability to get real-time
actionable targeting information to the appropriate shooter, whether
the shooter is a tank division, an individual tank, an artillery
battery, an individual rifle man, a naval battle group, an individual
ship, an air wing/squadron, or an aircraft in flight. This means the
need to have the right shooter in the right place; locating and
identifying the target correctly and quickly; allocating and assigning
targets rapidly; getting the "shoot" order or general authority to the
shooter; and then assessing the battle damage accurately.

At whatever the unit level, Shock and Awe are provided by the speed
and effectiveness of this cycle. Then, the ability to do this
simultaneously throughout the battlefield creates a strategic Shock
and Awe on the opposing forces, their leadership, and populous. This
simultaneity and concurrency are central tenets of imposing Shock and
Awe. When the video results of these attacks are broadcast in real
time worldwide on CNN, the positive impact on coalition support and
negative impact on potential threat support can be decisive.

The first priority of a doctrine of Rapid Dominance should be to
deter, alter, or affect the will and therefore those actions that are
either unacceptable to U.S. national security interests or endanger
the democratic community of states and access to free markets. These
political objectives are generally those envisioned in the major and
lower regional conflict scenarios (MRC & LRC). Should deterrence fail,
the application of Rapid Dominance in these circumstances should
create sufficient Shock and Awe to the immediate threat forces and
leadership as well as provide a clear message for other potential
threat partners. The doctrine of Rapid Dominance would not be limited
to MRC and LRC scenarios. It has applications in a variety of areas
such as countering WMD, terrorism, and perhaps other tasks. The
challenge is that should deterrence fail, the execution of a response
based on Rapid Dominance must be proportional to the threat, yet
decisive enough to convey the right degree of Shock and Awe. Rapid
Dominance cannot solve all or even most of the world's problems. We
repeat our disclaimer that this is not a silver bullet. However, Rapid
Dominance and its capacity for achieving Shock and Awe could be
applied for egregious threats or violations of international law, such

  - Direct military threats to the territory of the U.S., its friends,
    and allies;
  - Blatant aggression involving a large state crushing a small state;
  - Rogue leader/state sponsored terrorism/use of WMD;
  - Egregious violations of human rights on a large scale; and
  - Threat to essential world markets.

Clearly, the Information Highway is crossing all sovereign borders and
penetrating even the most closed societies. The inequities and
benefits in all societies are becoming known to the masses as well as
the power brokers. The requirement for Rapid Dominance to develop
sophisticated capabilities to penetrate the Information Highway and
create road blocks as well as control inputs/outputs to the highway
both overtly and covertly is fundamental to the concept.

These same techniques also apply to law enforcement agencies targeting
international crime and drug cartels using the highway. Closer
interagency cooperations and coordination between military and law
enforcement activities and capabilities must be established.
Experience with the military involvement in the drug war revealed
considerable cultural differences between these organizations.
Overcoming these cultural differences among organizations is not easy.
The required trust and confidence for sharing sensitive information
and support between these agencies and the military needs to be
developed further. Interagency coordination and cooperation must be
raised to a new level of sophistication. Some laws may need to be
changed. War in Cyberspace does not recognize domestic or foreign
boundaries. In this environment the subjects of Information Warfare
and Information In Warfare take on new meaning and require focused
development. We must become proficient within this environment.

Operational Assumptions

  - The enemy picks the time and place to initiate the conflict (i.e.,
    we are surprised).
  - We then attain control of the initiative through superior speed,
    knowledge, and capacity to act and react.
  - Our forces are perceived to be invincible; engagements must
    convince the enemy there is no hope.
  - Combat must be unrelenting and omnipresent at times, places, and
    tempo of choosing.
  - Allied operations must be thoroughly integrated, from political
    objectives through combat to include psychological warfare.
  - The enemy must be hit in those areas of greatest importance to him
    and devastated by the ferocity and swiftness of our attack.

From these assumptions, certain operational criteria follow that help
to define a Rapid Dominance Force with more specificity in improving:

  - Intelligence, indications, and warning on an aggressor's actions
  - The length of time required for a decision to react
  - Decisive responses at various levels and times after the crises or
    conflict begins to develop:
    - Respond in 1 to 3 days with air and missile strikes and special
    - Respond in 5 to 10 days with more massive power up to and
      including a joint task force of corps size
    - Respond in 10 to 30 days with a second corps

The Rapid Dominance MCP

As a next step, we need to sketch out what a Rapid Dominance Force
might look like for a corps-sized air, ground, sea, and space joint
task force supported by necessary intelligence assets that can impose
sufficient Shock and Awe to break the will of the adversary. First,
this force will emphasize capabilities to maximize the core
characteristics of knowledge of self, adversary, and environment;
rapidity; brilliance in execution; and control of the environment.

Knowledge means more than dominant battlefield awareness. It means
understanding the adversary's mind and anticipating his reactions. It
means targeting those things that will produce the intended Shock and
Awe. And, it means having feedback and good, timely battle assessment
to enable knowledge to be used dynamically as well as to know how our
forces will react.

Rapidity means moving and acting as quickly as necessary and always on
a timely basis. Rapidity can be instant or as required.

Brilliance in operations means achieving the highest standards of
operational competence and, through a superiority of knowledge,
maintaining the ability to impose Shock and Awe through continuously
surprising and psychologically and physically breaking the adversary's
will to resist. This will require training and exercising of joint
land, sea, air, space, and special forces to new standards of
excellence and competence. It is mainly in training where the
difference lies in achieving operational brilliance. This desired
standard of performance can be achieved by making innovations to
permit new levels of battlefield fidelity for training units and
developing leaders.

Control of the environment would include complete signature control on
the entire battle area out to hundreds of miles. We would control our
signatures as well as what we wanted the adversary to see or hear and
what we do not want the enemy to know. Destruction of the adversary's
systems would begin with long-range stealthy, or "stand-off" Zero CEP
weapons, extend to FOG-M type battlefield weapons to close-in systems.
Small units would be able to call in "fires" for 360 degrees on a
nearly instant basis.

Attacks from all aspects would be complemented by deception,
disinformation, surveillance, targeting, and killing. "Pulse" weapons
would be used to disarm and actively deceive the enemy through
disrupting and attacking all aspects of the adversary's electronics,
information, and C4I infrastructure. It is this "lay down" of total
power across all areas in rapid and simultaneous actions that would
impose the Shock and Awe.

The remainder, roughly a third of this Joint Task Force, would consist
of traditional platforms including conventional ground, air, and
amphibious forces, naval battle group forces, and the necessary
supporting logistical, C4I, medical and other capabilities and ground
forces to conduct and sustain conventional or traditional operations
if needed and to support or defend traditionally vulnerable targets
such as ports, roads, and other infrastructure.

Tactical employment is, of course, dependent on the conditions of the
MRC. In general, the most rapidly deployable units of this corps, the
future equivalent of the Eighteenth Airborne Corps, would be sent to
secure or reinforce a limited area into which the remainder of the
force would flow. This AOR would be self-protected. Our goal is that
perhaps a Rapid Dominance force of as few as 2,000 troops could
successfully defend against an enemy of 10-20,000 in an MRC and that a
full corps can be deployed within 5 to 10 days.

These units would arrive quickly and, as directed, begin disarming,
destroying, and disabling the enemy's military wherewithal using
"stand-off" capabilities. Forward-based or long-range reconnaissance
units could be employed/supported by UAVs and overhead surveillance.

Units would be forward deployed in accordance with their time phased
plan. These units would be used either to complete the attack or to
carry it to the adversary, occupy selective territory physically, or
carry out the requirements of the post-war occupation campaign. Should
traditional forces be needed, they would of course be available.

Protection and self-defense would partly be provided by controlling
the environment. In effect, we would cast a cloak around the adversary
and permit the adversary to see and know what we alone provided. This
would leave an adversary blind, deaf, and dumb. With superior and
rapid firepower, the blinded, deafened enemy would be destroyed and
defeated as we saw fit. This would maximize Shock and Awe and help
break the adversary's will.

In OOTW, the Rapid Dominance JTF might function as follows. First, the
ability to deploy dominant force rapidly to attack or threaten to
attack appropriate targets could be brought to bear without involving
manpower-intense or manned sensors and weapons. Second, once deployed,
since self-defense is likely to be required against small arms, mines,
and shoulder carried or mortar weapons, certainly some form of "armor"
or protective vehicles and shelters would be necessary. However,
through the UAVs, C4I, and virtual reality systems, as well as through
signature management and other Shock and Awe weapons including High
Powered Microwave (HPM) and "stun-like" systems, this force would have
more than dominant battlefield awareness.

There are, of course, caveats. Unless strategic or policy objectives
are in line with operational capabilities, military force is unlikely
to be a useful instrument. It is also unlikely that any operational
construct, no matter how brilliantly conceived, could overcome such a
disconnect. Vietnam and Somalia remind us of these limitations.

The assimilation of intelligence-strategically, culturally, and
operationally-is a central thrust and component of the knowledge
aspect of Rapid Dominance. Our forces must not only fight smarter;
these forces, at all or most levels, must be educated and trained
differently with far more emphasis on intelligence, broadly defined.
This knowledge, when applied rapidly under conditions of brilliance
and in a controlled environment, is a centerpiece of Rapid Dominance.

There must be full comprehension of the adversary across strategic,
political, military, cultural, intellectual, and perceptual lines.
This understanding must go beyond how an adversary might use military
force. Those crucial values that motivate and underlie a nation or a
group must be understood if the appropriate level of Shock and Awe is
to be achieved.

There are also obvious questions that must be answered. Does Rapid
Dominance apply only or mostly to the high end of the conflict
spectrum involving more traditional applications of force to achieve
political objectives, as envisioned in the MRC and LRC scenarios? Yet
to be explored is the degree to which a concept of Rapid Dominance
with Shock and Awe applies to OOTW, countering terrorism against U.S.
interests, controlling rogue states/leaders, etc. What are the
political and military prerequisites to apply Rapid Dominance? Are
they applicable and realistically achievable in the increasingly
complex interaction of national non-government organizations
(PVOs/NGOs) present worldwide to provide health and humanitarian care
to refugees and other disenfranchised people? Would the concept of
Rapid Dominance with a degree of Shock and Awe offend and generate
counterproductive public relations backlash from those who believe
force should only be used as a last resort and then with a measurable
degree of proportionality?

At this point, we can only raise questions and expect to have them
answered at a later date. This line of questions, concerns, and issues
as well as a host of others, needs to be examined up front and
answered in the Rapid Dominance concept development process. We must
be careful that we do not overvisualize Rapid Dominance versus the
reality of credible/affordable capabilities to execute the concept.
Rapid Dominance must still confront the fog of war. Decisions will
still be made based on judgment and confidence in the intelligence
provided, the estimate of threat intentions, knowledge of true center
of gravity targets, and confidence in our own force capabilities to
inflict Shock and Awe. In fact, the key will be the ability to
penetrate this fog with increased clarity and to control events now
unmanageable through more rapid gathering, analyzing, and distributing
actionable information. Complicating the issue is the fact that the
U.S. has not clearly defined its role in the post-Cold War era. As the
world's only credible superpower, the U.S. cannot avoid a leadership
role but neither can it avoid the focused criticism applied to all
leaders. This is the classical "damned if you do and damned if you
don't" syndrome.

At this stage, the concept of Rapid Dominance is a work in progress.
It needs to be "operationalized." By designing a nominal MCP and
fitting with it paper systems and capabilities, we can explore the
answers to many of the questions we raised above. Three steps are
needed to proceed down the road on the way to a real capability.
First, feasibility of the requisite technical capabilities needs to be
established. Second, wargaming of the MCP must be done. Third, and
perhaps most difficult, deriving the means for implementing the most
promising aspects of Rapid Dominance must occur.

An Outline for System Innovation and Technological Integration

Achieving Shock and Awe is central to Rapid Dominance, and therefore
must serve as the key organizing principle for any rigorous
examination and exploitation of system concepts and technologies for
Rapid Dominance. Understanding the interplay between technology and
doctrine is not only or simply a straightforward matter of
establishing operational requirements and then seeking to attain them
through invention and design. It is a complex and interactive process
of experimentation and discovery wherein intellect, hard work,
endurance, and innovation must drive the use of technology. Rather
than make changes, however significant, to modifying current
capabilities or building newer, similar ones, Rapid Dominance seeks to
identify and field systems specifically designed to achieve Shock and
Awe-systems that may break the mold much as the Model T Ford once did
years ago.

The genetic decoders in bioengineering laboratories, computer-aided
design tools used by engineers, vast database management systems in
place in corporate offices, computer-controlled machines enabling
composite materials, and the countless academic, business, and
personal computers are all evidence of the prominent and ever
increasing role information technologies have assumed in modern
economies. Many of the technologies underlying the Information Age are
being spearheaded by U.S. small business and its entrepreneurial
culture. Certainly, from the huge consumer electronics firms in Japan
to software development businesses in India, the rest of the world
participates and competes. But few can deny that U.S. industry
provides the leadership in and is the preeminent developer of
information technologies as they are most broadly defined. This
leadership position, properly leveraged, provides the United States
with an ever increasing military advantage over competing nations.

Leveraging technology requires more than merely incorporating it into
U.S. forces; it is likely to include a significant redesign of both
forces and leadership to embrace these rapidly evolving technologies.
Many of the technologies that will support Rapid Dominance are already
discernible. Unlike the impact of nuclear weapons, it is unlikely that
a single technology or system will emerge to produce Rapid Dominance.
It will only be attainable through the broadest integration of
strategic concepts, doctrine, operational needs, technological
advances, system design, and appropriate organization of command,
control, training and education. And only a large, immensely capable
country such as the U.S. may be able to achieve this.

Rapid Dominance seeks to integrate this confluence of strategy,
technology, and innovation. Four core characteristics were defined
earlier as crucial:

  - Complete knowledge of self, adversary, and the environment;
  - Rapidity;
  - Brilliance of execution; and
  - Control of the environment.

What follows is illustrative rather than exhaustive of how technology
can be used in a broad system approach. Many of these technologies
currently are being addressed within the defense community. Analysts,
military strategists, acquisition planners, and even "futurists" are
wrestling with the meaning and consequences of the Information Age.
Our focus on systems and technologies begins with these four

Knowledge of Self, Adversary, and Environment

In the modern threat environment, it is difficult to estimate where
the next crisis may occur, let alone the next war. Even 5 years ago,
who would have foreseen the significant involvement of the U.S.
military in places like Somalia, Haiti, Rwanda, Bosnia, and the South
China Sea? To which hot spots can we expect to see U.S. troops
deployed over the next 5 years? Over the next 20? In this section we
argue that, in addition to improving our force capabilities, the U.S.
must develop an intelligence repository far more extensive than during
the Cold War, covering virtually all the important regions and
organizational structures throughout the world.

During the Cold War, intelligence agencies focused more on a bipolar
world and built sizable organizations to collect information on "the
other side." This same intelligence structure, in the main, is in
place today facing a multipolar world, where any number of power
structures-whether they be states, international organizations, or
even small groups of individuals-must be monitored with an
understanding that extends to their leadership, culture, economic
direction, and military capability.

As the technologies relevant to knowing the adversary and his
environment are examined, an emerging theme is the clear shift from
technology developments that once resided within our government to
those driven by commercial demands. For example, the information
technologies used by U.S. intelligence agencies are of such
complexity, importance, and expense that they are referred to as
"national assets" and are developed and managed by large, dedicated
organizations. Even here, commercial companies are rapidly encroaching
on what once seemed to be an unassailable market position in Earth
observation systems. One may already purchase synthetic aperture radar
interferometry images from any number of sources, and panchromatic
visual images with one meter resolution will soon be available over
the counter for remarkably little cost. Indeed, the only real barrier
to this burgeoning market is the understandable concerns that
governments have with allowing such technology to be widely available.
In areas such as encryption and data security, commercial developers
are more likely to reach limits of government acceptance before those
of technological capability.

With untold billions invested in communications systems, even the most
modern U.S. military communication systems often compare poorly with
commercial systems. While this has long been the case for fielded
systems, it is becoming true for even the most sophisticated research
and development programs being undertaken by defense organizations.

As a case in point, one may consider a program recently initiated by
the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) called
Battlefield Awareness and Data Dissemination (BADD). At the heart of
this program, large amounts of data are collected within a vast
database residing on commercial computers and enterprise management
systems. This information is then disseminated to the troops through
the commercial Global Broadcast System (GBS) onto "set-top" boxes, an
enabling technology that was developed commercially. Even with this
leveraging of private industry, there is a real question as to whether
DARPA will be able to field a system that would compete well with
surprisingly similar commercial systems. Internet channels planned by
media industry giants such as BSkyB will offer multi-megabit,
interactive, digital data connections to the Net merely as an
enticement for subscribers to enroll for their full digital
broadcasting service (200 to 300 channels of digital video and sound).
Understanding that there is much more to BADD than the little
discussed here, one still almost wonders whether DARPA could simply
buy a subscription and connect it to an appropriate, commercial,
network management system. More to the point, if even well funded and
aggressive technology development organizations such as DARPA find it
difficult to remain ahead of commercial advancements, there may be a
fundamental lesson to be learned regarding the management of
defense-related technologies.

Knowledge and Intelligence

"Intelligence" is comprised of five categories of knowledge and
understanding: a society's leadership; culture and values; the
strategic, political, economic, and physical environment; military
capabilities and orders of battle; and comprehensive battlefield
information. Examples of technologies and system approaches of
potential relevance in these areas are discussed below.

Understanding potential adversaries, coalition partners, and involved
neutral countries implies an infrastructure for acquiring an in-depth
knowledge about cultures, leadership values, and other driving factors
that allow us, when needed and on a timely basis, to get "into their
minds." Applicable technologies include automated language
translators, interactive and autonomous computer simulations, advanced
database systems for organizing and understanding data and
transactions of individuals and institutions, and computerized
educational systems for training and learning these skills.

Collecting sufficient and timely environmental information is crucial
to Rapid Dominance. Logistics, demographics, and infrastructure are
broad areas of collection along with geography, road/rail/ship lanes,
utility sites and corridors, manufacturing, government sites, military
and paramilitary facilities, population demographics, economic and
financial pressure points (such as oil wells or gold mines), and major
dams and bridges. Technologies used to provide environmental awareness
include traditional means such as satellites that can be augmented
with dynamic sensor management tools for optimizing observation
routines. The vast quantities of data that reside on the world's
computer networks, if properly exploited, provide another rich source
of information. Data mining tools, such as Web crawlers, gatherers,
brokers, and repositories that pull and organize data from public
networks, will be essential to building a more complete picture of
potential adversaries. Since not all databases and host computers are
cooperative with these methods, offensive information warfare tools
will be required to obtain specific pieces of information that are
vital for national security purposes.

Once data are collected, they must be processed and disseminated and
then stored for future access. Enterprise data storage and retrieval
systems that are capable of working with many terrabytes (1,000
gigabytes) of information are already commonplace. Since it is
impossible for humans to comprehend such vast quantities of
information without some assistance, data exploitation tools (filters,
fusion, automatic target recognition, image understanding, etc.) will
be crucial technologies. Finally, the information, once processed,
will be of little use if not disseminated to the right people in a
timely fashion. "Intelligent data" dissemination and wide bandwidth
communications are examples of essential technologies emerging in this

In addition to knowledge about regions and locations where U.S. force
may be applied, it is important to maintain vigilance and up-to-date
knowledge on specific "hot spots" and to have sufficient flexibility
within the system to shift attention rapidly to new areas. Systems
addressing this more time-sensitive set of tasks would include light,
quickly deployable satellites, high altitude and endurance unmanned
aerial vehicles, manned platforms, and unattended ground sensors.

As a crisis unfolds and the insertion of U.S. troops or other military
action becomes more probable, information needs and the number of
information consumers both increase dramatically. Information that
must be collected and correlated include targeting, battle damage
assessment (BDA), weather, terrain, infrastructure, tracking of
special targets, logistics, position and status of our own troops,
identification friend or foe (IFF), and status of material. It is
vitally important that sufficient sensor systems work in all weather
conditions and at night to maintain the "operations tempo" required by
Rapid Dominance.

Battlefield awareness requires three information technologies:
collection, fusion, and dissemination of real-time actionable
information to a shooter. Rapid Dominance requires an unprecedented
level of real-time information collection that will be provided by
sensor systems such as space platforms, UAVs, unattended ground
sensors, and advanced manned reconnaissance platforms. In addition,
the entire infosphere of the adversary will be monitored not only for
classic information such as operational commands but also to determine
the shock effect being created by Rapid Dominance operations.
Collecting data from cooperative sources such as one's own troops,
allies, and friendly non-combatants is also critical. While _Operation
Desert Storm_ showed the value of self-location sensors such as GPS,
the friendly fire casualties demonstrated that there is still work to
be done in terms of giving each commander and soldier sufficient
information to operate effectively. Much of this information, such as
the physiological status of individual combatants, is not currently
collected, and much of what is sensed is not properly disseminated.

It would be hard to overstate the importance of information
dissemination within Rapid Dominance. Administering Shock and Awe
requires a spectrum of attacks that the adversary is unable to fathom,
but our own forces must operate effectively, even aggressively, within
an environment that could easily lead to serious information
bottlenecks and overload. Commercial technologies will be key to the
U.S. developing a structure to effectively disseminate information.
Already, commercial communications technologies such as global
broadcast satellites and protocols like those underlying the Internet
have been used as stop gaps by the U.S. military in major deployments.

Merely transmitting the right information at the right time will not
be sufficient for operations enabling Rapid Dominance. Information
will need to be fused to create knowledge-based displays. The
technologies that will be important in this area go beyond the data
fusion algorithms currently in place and should leverage heavily off
of technologies in fields such as computer image generation, virtual
reality, and advanced simulation.


In a technology sense, rapidity includes the speed of operational
planning, determining appropriate action, deployment, and employment
all focused toward minimizing response time. Three factors combine to
make military planning far more difficult today than in the Cold War
era. First, there is great uncertainty early on in the location of a
conflict, who the adversary may be, and with whom one may be allied.
Second, there is normally very little time available for planning,
with the military sometimes having only weeks or days before
committing troops to an unanticipated mission. Third, vastly more
information is available to the planner, which is both a blessing and
a curse. Several technologies that partially define Intelligent
Dynamic Planning will make it easier for the commander to plan Rapid

  - Model based planning
  - Machine intelligence
  - Dynamic planning based upon feedback and new information
  - Selectively automated decision aides (commanders associate)
  - Imbedded rehearsal and training
  - Brilliance in Execution

It is impossible to institutionalize brilliance. However, the standard
can be set. The Dynamic Planning noted above is part of the capability
for this characteristic as are the systems and technologies discussed

  Technologies Critical to Achieving Brilliance in Rapid Dominance

For shock to be administered with minimum collateral damage, key
targets of value must be neutralized or destroyed, and the enemy must
be made to feel completely helpless and unable to consider a
meaningful response. Furthermore, the enemy's confusion must be
complete, adding to a general impression of impotence. Most
importantly, strategic targets, military forces, leadership and key
societal resources must be located, tracked, and targeted. This will
require substantial sensor, computational, and communication
technologies. Designated targets must be destroyed rapidly and with
assurance. Finally, the status and position of friendly forces must be
known at all times, and the logistics supporting them must be
sufficiently flexible to allow for rapid movement, reconfiguration,
and decentralization of location.

Several technologies that can help in this are discussed below, as
divided into the following subsections: sensors, computational
systems, communications and system integration.

  Sensor Technologies

Sensor technologies are grouped into four areas: active, passive,
imbedded, and processing.

_Active sensors:_ By far, the most important of the energy-emitting
sensors is radar. Among the best all-weather capabilities of any type
of sensor, the role for and capabilities of radar have steadily
increased since the Second World War. Radar systems are used for early
warning, air defense, air asset management, air traffic control, naval
fleet defense, detection and tracking of moving ground targets,
missile targeting, missile terminal guidance, terrain data
development, and weather prediction. For Rapid Dominance, radars and
other active sensors must operate with low probability of intercept.
Particularly with stealthy systems, this will present a unique
challenge to military systems where one may not expect a great amount
of "spin-on" from the commercial sector. It is vitally important to be
able to sense the enemy under all conditions and environments. Sensors
must penetrate foliage and walls and detect threats such as
underground and underwater mines.

There are many other important active sensor classes, three of which
are active acoustics, lidar and magnetic anomaly detectors. Broadband
underwater active acoustics could address pressing needs such as
shallow-water anti-submarine warfare and mine detection (both buried
and silt covered). The practical application of lidar is a relatively
recent development enabled by advances in laser, power management, and
data processing technologies. Lidar can be used for fire control,
weapon guidance, foliage penetration (vegetation is translucent in the
near infrared (NIR) regime), and target imaging/recognition. Lidar
detects shape directly and shape fluctuations such as vibration and
motion and has proven very hard to spoof. Magnetic anomaly detectors
will continue to find application in areas of anti-mine and
anti-submarine warfare and in screening for weapons at security
checkpoints and elsewhere.

Electronic emissions are of themselves a liability only where they
create a signature of use to an enemy. The ability to emit energy, yet
in ways that are less discernible, should be an attractive avenue to
explore for the future. The coordinated application of many sensor
platforms, some of which may be completely passive, in conjunction
with emitting sensors is a potentially major area of exploration.

_Passive sensors:_ Among the passive sensor types, the most important
for U.S. forces is forward-looking infrared (FLIR). FLIR technology
has allowed the U.S. to "own the night," as was handily displayed in
_Operation Desert Storm_. Some of the significant technology
advancements underway in this area include multiple wavelength
sensors, very large focal planes, and the increasing performance of
uncooled sensors. Particularly in the area of uncooled sensors,
commercial developments are underway that promise to drastically
reduce the cost of competent IR sensors.

Other passive sensor technologies of note include hyperspectral
visible/NIR collection and processing and inexpensive, scatterable,
unattended ground sensors (acoustic, seismic, "hot spot," etc.).
Hyperspectral imaging allows target searches to be conducted in the
frequency domain, as opposed to the spatial domain as is the norm
today. This provides a powerful new input for automatic target
recognition (ATR) systems, is useful for addressing low observables
(LO), and is especially important for remote imaging assets.

Unattended ground sensors allow critical areas to be monitored
continually. For example, the actual area of operations for Scuds in
ODS was relatively small, but it was very difficult for then-current
sensing systems to oversee. Technologies being developed in the area
of microelectromechanical systems, in particular, hold promise for
enabling capable and inexpensive sensor fields.

_Imbedded sensors:_ Monitoring the position and status of Blue and
friendly forces and assets is of equal importance in tracking the
enemy. GPS presented a tremendous advantage to troops in ODS. This
capability needs to be extended down to the individual soldier, and
the status of all critical material and personnel needs to be tracked.

_Sensor signal processing:_ Finally, the signals from modern sensors
are of limited use without proper processing and presentation to the
user. This area will be developed further in the computational
technologies section. Technologies that are historically grouped with
sensor systems include automatic target recognition, imbedded
multisensor fusion and correlation, and displays.

  Computational Technologies

The capabilities of the integrated circuit (IC), and in particular the
microprocessor, continue to increase unabated. Certainly, physical
limits must be approached at some point, but each looming barrier has
so far been met by technological innovation. Nevertheless, should the
march of IC improvements slow somewhat, the software and networking
technologies that are being developed at an accelerating pace will
permit the vision of Rapid Dominance to become of ever increasing

Rapid Dominance requires the collection, management, and fast access
of enormous quantities of information. Technologies that will enable
this include computational hardware advances such as increasingly
powerful workstations, reduced-cost image generators, massively
parallel machines, compact displays, reduced-cost memory devices
(i.e., DRAM, RAID, and optical jukeboxes) client/server-specific
database engines, reconfigurable simulation cells, "wearable" PCs,
advanced human-computer interface (HCI) techniques (i.e., voice
interfaces and those coming to define "virtual reality"), and PCMCIA
technology for peripherals (i.e., digital comms boards, miniaturized
hard drives, and modems).

Software advances will be even more critical for Rapid Dominance.
Areas of importance include:

  - Network data engines
  - Object-oriented architectures
  - Advanced modeling and simulation
  - Machine intelligence
  - Automatic target recognition
  - Computer-aided software engineering (CASE) tools

Network technologies are just now emerging but are being driven at a
frenzied pace in the commercial marketplace. A variety of advanced
tools beyond "hot link" browsing are being introduced daily. Data
browsers, brokers, gatherers, and network repositories are being
released, as demonstrated by products like _Harvester_ and _Netscape's
Catalog Server_. Platform independent languages such as JAVA and their
associated virtual computational engines promise the same network
flexibility for programs that is now enjoyed by data.

Perhaps the most important area of technology development for Rapid
Dominance is the development of practical object-oriented
architectures and protocols. Protocols such as CORBA, OLE, ALSP, HLA
and DIS[1] are changing the face of computing, making it much easier
to link programs and databases, and access and correlate information
that was previously "entombed" within its legacy application.

[Footnote 1: CORBA (common object request broker architecture), OLE
(object linking and embedding), ALSP (aggregate level simulation
protocol), HLA (high-level architecture), DIS (Distributed Interactive
Simulation). These are all protocols or the architectures defining
protocols that, in part, enable disparate software and/or hardware
components to be linked or otherwise share information and logical

One interesting application area migrating toward an object-oriented
approach is geospatial databases. In the past, geospatial data were
stored as either raster-based or vector information, and significant
processing was required for users to make queries regarding roads,
areas, or objects such as building sites. A new approach, called a
spatial database engine, creates intuitive objects from standard
geospatial databases and uses commercial databases to add attributes
to the objects. This is a very powerful technique that allows
geospatial data, a key element of warfighting, to be managed quickly
and efficiently using commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) software. It is
particularly useful for distributed databases such as one would find
on a network.

Modeling and simulation is also benefiting from object-oriented
technologies. Simulations were once stand-alone codes. If one wanted
to simulate a joint battle, one began with an existing model (i.e.,
land combat) and then modified it to include other components (i.e.,
aircraft and ships). Similarly, if a new technology were to be
modeled, new code normally had to be written, even in cases where
good, validated, stand-alone technology models existed. The obvious
drawbacks to this approach are that it is costly, often produces
inferior simulations for the new additions, and quickly results in
extremely large codes with commensurate large code management
problems. Object-oriented approaches allow models and simulations to
be linked to form a richer environment for examining new technologies
and joint force structures.

Linking force-on-force simulations with design tools such as
computer-aided design (CAD) programs and physics-based simulations
presents a new type of tool referred to as simulation-based design.
Once fully realized, this capability will allow new technologies to be
much more easily evaluated, introducing a source for greater
efficiency into today's somewhat haphazard acquisition system.

Simulations based on object-oriented architectures also promise more
flexibility that will enable scenarios and unexpected situations to be
made as inputs and simulated rapidly, forming the core for a
battlefield visualization system capable of modeling "what if"
situations. Outputs from these simulations could be used for mission
rehearsal. Even today, pilots and special operations forces often "fly
through" crude, three-dimensional renderings of a mission area to
familiarize themselves with information such as surface-to-air missile
(SAM) sites and landmarks.

The promise of computational technologies brings with it potential
vulnerabilities that must be protected against threats. In a world
where information plays a vital role in warfare, information
collection and processing tools will become targets. Defenses against
information warfare must be developed. The threat is real and is
growing especially in the commercial and private sectors. Even today,
malicious hackers devise data-destroying viruses and distribute them
through a plethora of electronic media; numerous sites on the Net are
dedicated to the discussion and development of offensive computer
viruses, with ample tools for even the novice to download and employ.
Moreover, computer crimes cost the world economy billions of dollars
annually. Although information warfare poses serious threats, the
realm of information is where operations underlying Rapid Dominance
most reside, and the enemy will find himself fully engaged should he
choose to fight on our terms. Rapid Dominance is essentially
information warfare on a grand scale in all dimensions of offensive,
defensive and leveraging effective use of available information.

  Communication Technologies

One of the modern communication devices being fielded within U.S.
forces today is the SINGCARS radio. With a data rate of somewhat less
than 10 kbps, SINGCARS is woefully inadequate for supporting Rapid
Dominance. However, more appropriate technologies are emerging:

  - GBS and other satellite broadcast services
  - Wider bandwidth, digital communication protocols
  - Asynchronous transfer mode (ATM) switches
  - Advanced comm relay platforms (UAV, Lightsat, Iridium, etc.)

GBS, for example, figures prominently in the BADD (battlefield
awareness and data dissemination) program that aims at providing close
to 30 Mbps of data broadcast bandwidth. This will be supported by
multi-terrabyte databases, advanced data browsers, and query managers,
and will be linked to the Joint Tactical Internet.

Networking must also be supported by communications technologies. The
basic problem of a battlefield network is that while some nodes may
support very large data pipes, a number of nodes will be operating at
SINGCARS data rates. This led to the BADD notion of one-way data
broadcasting via GBS of large data files (such as UAV video and
overhead imagery) and very low bandwidth data querying back to the
data sources.

Modern communications will tend to be more multimedia-based, which is
particularly important for Rapid Dominance, where decisions must be
made quickly based upon very large quantities of data, some of which
will be collected and transmitted in real time. Technologies such as
digital video teleconferencing, virtual whiteboards, and even 3D
virtual environments where commanders may participate in collaborative
planning sessions will become important.

Finally, battlefield communications must be secure and, where
feasible, non-observable to the enemy.

Control of the Environment

The actual attack of targets in order to induce Shock and Awe may, in
some sense, be considered a subset of controlling the enemy's
perception. It will not always be necessary to destroy numerous
targets in order to induce shock. However, it would be vitally
important to give the appearance that there are no safe havens from
attack, and that any target may be attacked at any time with impunity
and force. Furthermore, as discussed earlier, confusion must be
imposed on the adversary by supplying only information which will
shape the adversary's perceptions and help break his will. Finally,
the enemy must be displaced from selected key positions, for if he is
allowed to occupy those areas that he considers strategically
important, it is difficult to imagine how his shock could be complete.

Controlling an enemy's perception of the battlespace includes
manipulating his view of the threat, his own troops and status, and
the environment in which he operates. This will be accomplished by
selectively denying knowledge to the enemy while presenting him with
information that is either misleading or serves our purposes. Sensing
and feedback of an enemy leadership's perception of the situation will
be critical.

Technologies of interest here include those that allow systems and
entire force units to modify their signature from being very stealthy
to being completely obvious. An ability to attack enemy information
systems will also be critical, encompassing system technologies from
laser-based counter sensor weapons to embedded computer viruses,
commonly referred to as Trojan Horses. In all cases, the goal will be
to deny the enemy any information that would be useful to him and to
impose a construct of deception and misinformation at all levels of

Clearly, technologies necessary to achieve battlefield awareness
already mentioned will be crucial in allowing a "perception attack" (a
form of information warfare) to be successfully carried out. The need
and requirements for Battlefield Damage Assessment (BDA) will increase
dramatically. It will be necessary to understand not only whether a
target was killed but also how enemy leadership, troops, and society
viewed this destruction.

So far, primarily information technologies have been discussed.
Obviously, there will continue to be requirements for numerous other
types of systems. Among the more important system technologies
critical to achieving control of the environment include:

  - Weapons platforms with stealth technology
  - Weapons systems
  - Robotic systems

  Weapons platforms

One of the fundamental rationales for weapons platforms is to move
people and ordinance to within an effective range of the target.
Centuries before smart weapons and robotic systems, this reasoning was
understood intuitively. Since ordinance must still be placed on the
target, weapons platforms such as described below still demand

  - Stealthy bombers and strike aircraft either land or sea platform
  - Arsenal ships
  - Submarines with conventional cruise missiles
  - Stealthy land vehicles
  - Stealthy observation/attack helicopters

Stealth, combined with stand off, will contribute strongly to the
protection of manned systems on the modern battlefield and will also
be used extensively for other, high-value unmanned systems. However,
protection of the force is inherent within the concept of Rapid
Dominance, and it will rely upon the control of information and the
enemy's perception of events, stealth being one of the elements
enabling this control.

  Weapons systems

Smart munitions will be required on the future battlefield. Linked
with information technologies, the combination will allow killing any
target that can be identified. The main element Rapid Dominance
requires of weapons systems is the ability to be rapidly focused on
objectives as identified and targeted by commanders using the
information management systems already discussed. Commanders will
require the flexibility to call massive, precision strikes or to
attack individual, high-priority targets with near zero CEP. This
implies a mixture of weapons comprised of systems such as those
mentioned below.

  - Cruise missiles
  - Zero CEP, long-range cruise missile ("President's weapon")
  - Stand-off submunition platforms
  - Smart submunitions
  - Brilliant submunitions
  - Wide area smart mines
  - Long-range and short-range surface attack missiles

  Robotic systems

Robotic systems are an important area of consideration within Rapid
Dominance. First, selected robotic systems will enable the force by
making it more responsive in concentrating sensors and weapons.
Second, they will make fighting a 24-hour battle feasible even with
reduced manpower within the force structure. Third, robotic systems
can provide force presence even in areas considered too dangerous for
a large manned element. Finally, since the ultimate operational goal
of Rapid Dominance is to create shock, one may consider the effect
that fighting robotic systems may have on the enemy.

In examining the utility of robotic systems within Rapid Dominance,
one must first consider that, by any measure, robotic systems have not
lived up to the optimistic expectations placed on them in the past.
From the overburdening of the Aquilla UAV to the massive and poorly
planned investment in robotics made by General Motors in the early
1980s, robotics has been an area of unfulfilled promises. However, the
reasons for a string of spectacular failures lie more with planners'
faulty attempts to understand and incorporate the technology than by
egregious shortcomings of the technology itself. Robots have been seen
as replacements for manned systems rather than extremely complicated
and capable machines suitable for a set of tightly defined tasks.
Robotic systems, or taskable machines as some are beginning to refer
to them, hold promise for the future simply because they represent the
intersection of a myriad of fast-moving technology areas such as
information technologies, communications, microelectronics,
micro-electromechanical systems, simulation, and computer-aided design
and manufacturing. In some sense, taskable machines are the physical
embodiment of information technologies. It may well be that in the
future the joke will be, "Never send a robot to do a man's job." But
even so, there will be ample jobs for taskable machines and the
society that learns to properly design, build, control, and integrate
these systems into their force structure will gain significant
advantage over any potential opponent.


The technologies and systems presented in this section are not
extraordinary nor do they comprise a complete list. Indeed, entire
fields such as materials, bioengineering, and microelectronics are
left for future consideration, although they are of obvious and vital
importance. Also not addressed here are the training, education, and
organizational implications required under a regime of Rapid
Dominance. Given the overriding importance of information collection
and management, these will need to be addressed across the defense
community as it is most broadly defined.

Rapid Dominance combines a doctrine and operational concept that
challenges the current process of how new technologies invented in the
commercial sector are incorporated into defense, and provides an
affirmative methodology for research, development, and system
integration. We must learn to exploit the potential of these
technologies even though, in many cases, this development process in
the private sector is profoundly independent from how we conduct the
business of defense. It is this environment of innovative upheaval
that any useful foundation for strategic and operational thought must
address. Rapid Dominance capitalizes on, and may even require, this
rapid and chaotic development of technology.

We believe that what will distinguish Rapid Dominance from other
doctrines is first that it uses an intellectual construct to drive
innovation and innovation to drive exploiting and integrating
technology into new and perhaps somewhat differently constructed
systems. Second, it is the comprehensive quality of Rapid Dominance in
which strategies, doctrine, technology, systems, operations, training,
organization, and education are dealt with together that may make the
most significant difference. But, as the reader will discern, specific
identification and design of Rapid Dominance systems is part of the
next step.

Future Directions

At this stage, Rapid Dominance is an intellectual construct based on
these key points. First, Rapid Dominance has evolved from the
collective professional, policy, and operational experience of the
study group covering the last four decades. This experience ran from
Vietnam to_ Desert Storm_ and from serving with operational units in
the field to being part of the decision-making process in the Oval
Office in Washington. It also included immersion in technology and
systems from thermonuclear weapons to advanced weapons software.

Second, Rapid Dominance seeks to exploit the unique juncture of
strategy, technology, and innovation created by the end of the Cold
War and to establish an alternative foundation for military doctrine
and force structure.

Third, Rapid Dominance draws on the strategic uses of force as
envisaged by Sun Tzu and Clausewitz to overpower or affect the will,
perception, and understanding of the adversary for strategic aims and
military objectives. But, in Rapid Dominance, the principal mechanism
for affecting the adversary's will is through the imposition of a
regime of Shock and Awe sufficient to achieve the aims of policy. It
is this relationship with and reliance on Shock and Awe that
differentiates Rapid Dominance from attrition, maneuver, and other
military doctrines including overwhelming force.

Shock and Awe impact on psychological, perceptual, and physical
levels. At one level, destroying an adversary's military force leaving
the enemy impotent and vulnerable may provide the necessary Shock and
Awe. At another level, the certainty of this outcome may cause an
adversary to accept our terms well short of conflict. In the great
middle ground, the appropriate balance of Shock and Awe must cause the
perception and anticipation of certain defeat and the threat and fear
of action that may shut down all or part of the adversary's society or
render his ability to fight useless short of complete physical

Finally, in order to impose enough Shock and Awe to affect an
adversary's will, four core characteristics of a Rapid Dominance-
configured force were defined. First, complete knowledge and
understanding of self, of the adversary, and of the environment are
essential. This knowledge and understanding exceed the expectations of
dominant battlefield awareness and DBA becomes a subset of Rapid

Rather like the wise investor and not the speculator who is only
familiar with a particular company and not the stock market in
general, the Rapid Dominance force must have complete knowledge and
understanding of many likely adversaries and regions. This requirement
for knowledge and understanding will place a huge, new burden on the
military forces and necessitate fundamental changes in policy,
organization, training, education, structure, and equipage.

Second is rapidity. Rapidity combines speed, timeliness, and agility
and the ability to sustain control after the initial shock. Rapidity
enables us to act as quickly as needed and always more quickly than
the adversary can react or take counter-actions. Rapidity is also an
antidote to surprise. If we cannot anticipate surprise, or are
surprised, rapidity provides a correcting capacity to neutralize the
effects of that surprise.

Third, and most provocatively, is setting the standard of operations
and execution in terms of brilliance. The consequences and
implications of setting brilliance as the standard and achieving it
are profound. Reconfiguration of command authority and organization
possibly to decentrali-zation down to individual troops must follow.
Allowing and encouraging an operational doctrine of the "first to
respond" will set the tempo provided that effective de-confliction of
friendly on friendly engagements has been assured.

This, of course, means that complete revision of doctrine, training,
and organization will be required. The matter is not just "fighting
smarter." It is learning to fight at even higher standards of skill
and competence.

Fourth is control of the environment. Control is defined in the
broadest sense: physical control of the land, air, sea, and space and
control of the "ether" in which information is passed and received.
This requires signature management throughout the full conflict
spectrum-deception, disinformation, verification, information control,
and target management-all with rapidity in both physical and
psychological impact. By depriving an adversary of the physical use of
time, space, and the ether, we play on the adversary's will and offer
the prospect of certain destruction should resistance follow.

The next step in this process must be specifically defining this Rapid
Dominance force in terms of force structure, capabilities, doctrine,
organization, and order of battle. We have begun this effort and are
focusing on a joint task force sized somewhere between a reinforced
division and a full corps (i.e., a strength of 75,000 - 200,000). We
also have the aim of being able to deploy this force within 5 to 10
days of the order to move and, of course, will be able to send smaller
force packages on a nearly instantaneous basis. We appreciate the
mobility and logistical implications of this requirement.

Once we design this "paper" force and equip it with "paper" systems,
we must evaluate it against the five basic questions and tests we
noted in the Prologue.

The first test of this Rapid Dominance force will be against the MRC.
The comparison, in the broadest sense, must be with the programmed
force and whatever emerges from the Quadrennial Defense Review of
1997. We will need to examine closely how and where and why Rapid
Dominance and Shock and Awe work and where they do not. At the very
least, we expect that this will help strengthen the current force and
improve current capabilities. Of course, it is our hope that this test
will validate Rapid Dominance as a legitimate doctrine.

Second, the Rapid Dominance force must be tested across the entire
spectrum of OOTW. These are the most difficult tests because, in some
of them, no force may be suitable and no force may work.

Third, the test of determining the political consequences of Rapid
Dominance must be conducted. On one hand, if this force capability can
be achieved and Shock and Awe administered to affect an adversary's
will, can a form of political deterrence be created? In the most
approximate sense, and we emphasize approximate, the analogy with
nuclear deterrence might be drawn. An adversary may be persuaded or
deterred from taking action in the first instance. On the other hand,
this capacity may be seen as politically unusable and allies and
others within the United States may not be fully trusting of the
possessor always to employ this force responsibly.

Fourth is the test of the implications of Rapid Dominance for
alliances and for waging coalition warfare. Our allies are already
concerned that the United States is leaving them far behind in
military technology and capability. If we possess this force and our
allies or partners do not, how do we fight together? Our view is that
this can be worked out through technology sharing and perhaps new
divisions of labor and mission specialization. However, these are
important points to be considered.

Finally, what does all this mean for resource investments in defense?

It is also likely that because Rapid Dominance will cause profound
consequences, the iron grip of the political bureaucracy will make a
fair examination difficult. It is no accident that other attempts at
change, especially those that ask for or are tainted with reform, have
had a short life span. It is interesting to note in this regard that
the President's Commission on Intelligence and its fine report that
recommended changes and refinements to the U.S. intelligence
community, despite a very positive initial reception, led to only a
few meaningful actions.

This discussion leads to two final points. We are all too well aware
that any strategy and force structure have vulnerabilities and
potential weaknesses. The experiences that this study group
collectively had in Vietnam makes this concern very strongly held. We
observe that in the private sector, the vulnerability of information
systems is real and is being exploited. A former director of the FBI
has told us that in New York, for example, the number one recruiting
target for organized crime is the teenage computer whiz. We think that
this "hacking," writ large in the private sector, must be assumed as
part of the defense problem. Hence, sensitivity to vulnerabilities
must be even greater, perhaps ironically, than it was during the Cold
War, because exploitation can come from many more sources in the

Second, wags may criticize Rapid Dominance as attempting to create a
"Mission Impossible Force." To be sure, we emphasize and demand
brilliance as the operational goal. However, we also know that the
military today is seen as a leading example of the best American
society has to offer. We wish to build on this reality. We note the
experience and the performance, albeit under highly unusual
circumstances, of_ Desert Storm_. We see no reason why that level of
performance cannot be made a permanent part of the fabric of the
American military.

Because we have entered a period of transition in which we enjoy a
dominant military position and a greatly reduced window of
vulnerability, this is the right time for experimentation and
demonstration. Rapid Dominance is still a concept and a work in
progress, not a final road map or blueprint. But the concept does
warrant, in our view, a commitment to explore and an opportunity that
could lead to dramatically better capabilities.

We believe that through Rapid Dominance and the commitment to examine
the entire range of defense across all components and aspects, a
revolution is possible. If Rapid Dominance can be harnessed in an
affordable and efficient way and an operational capability fielded to
impose sufficient Shock and Awe to affect an adversary's will, then
this will be the real Revolution in Military Affairs. We ask those who
are intrigued by this prospect to join us.

Appendix A

Thoughts on Rapid Dominance
by Admiral Bud Edney, USN (Ret.)

Why the need for a concept of Rapid Dominance? The answer lies in the
combined realities of modern technology, economics, and politics.


The evolution or revolution of information technology is impacting
everything we do and how we do it on a worldwide basis. The
far-reaching effects of the resulting information highway that crosses
all boundaries are already impacting the strategic decisions,
economics, and politics of the world of nation states. Borders are no
defense for the penetration of information even in highly controlled
or authoritarian societies. Similarly, the exploration and use of high
technology in space, together with the advent of sophisticated highly
accurate ballistic and cruise missiles, means borders between states
are not as important for strategic and impenetrable defenses in depth
as they used to be. The rapid advancements in telecommunications
technology, combined with the exploration and use of space vehicles to
saturate a world hungry for information, means that leaders can no
longer shield their people from the outside world. Thus information
will penetrate whatever curtain or wall that is erected in a futile
attempt to block it out. New centers of gravity are being created as
are new vulnerability choke points. The country or power structure
that harnesses the capabilities and dimensions of the information
revolution as it applies to issues of national security will remain in
control of its own destiny. The United States possesses a qualitative
and quantitative lead that, when combined with a properly focused and
coordinated (harmonized) industry, defense, and national security
policy, should ensure success for the foreseeable future. Harnessing
information technology and applying it to new strategic and doctrinal
thought in application of military force is the essence of Rapid


With the end of the Cold War and the dismantling of the Soviet Union,
there is no major power capable of destroying the U.S. mainland. Given
this absence of devastating threat, defense expenditures will continue
to be squeezed to address more pressing domestic priorities. Voter
demands for a balanced budget, national health care, social security
reform, educational reform, family values, crime and drug use
reduction, lower taxes, etc., will combine to put increasing pressure
on the defense bottom line in the out years. The result will be a
steady decline in war fighting readiness and force structure that will
place our security interests at risk unless we leverage our technology
leadership to achieve military advantage with lower force levels but
increased war fighting effectiveness. This is also the essence of
Rapid Dominance.


The reality of current politics is that the trauma of Vietnam, the
results of the Gulf War, and our status as the only remaining
superpower after the Cold War equate to some new constraints (real or
perceived) on the application of military force to support our foreign
policy. These political sensitivities need to be understood up front
and include the following:

  - The U.S. is not the world's policeman
  - Involvement of U.S. Forces must be justified as essential to vital
    U.S. security interests
  - Support of Congress and People is a necessary prerequisite
  - Avoid commitment of ground forces
  - Offer instead U.S. intelligence, air lift, sea lift, logistics
    support, etc.
  - Avoid risk of loss of U.S. lives at almost all costs
  - Ensure decisive force applied for mission assigned
  - Rules of Engagement allow U.S. forces to defend themselves
  - Minimize civilian casualties, loss of life, and collateral damage
  - Specify achievable mission objectives up front with an end in the
    not-too-distant future sight before committing
  - U.S. led coalition force preferred-U.S. Forces remain under U.S.
    Command. These political restraints may limit the application of
    Rapid Dominance to Major and Minor Regional Conflicts. This is an
    issue that needs further exploration and analysis.

What is Rapid Dominance?

Rapid Dominance is the full use of capabilities within a system of
systems that can decisively impact events requiring the application of
military/defense resources through affecting the adversary's will.
Rapid Dominance envisions execution in real or near real time to
counter actions or intentions deemed detrimental to U.S. interests. On
one end of the spectrum, Rapid Dominance would introduce a regime of
Shock and Awe in areas of high value to the threatening individual,
group, or state. In many cases the prior knowledge of credible U.S.
Rapid Dominance capabilities would act as a deterrent. Rapid Dominance
would ensure favorable early resolution of issues at minimal loss of
lives and collateral damage. The concept ideally should be able to
impact adversarial situations that apply across the board, addressing
high-, mid-, low-, and no-technology threats. Some of these aims may
not be achievable given the political and technology constraints, but
need to be explored.

Rapid Dominance expands the art of joint combined arms war fighting
capabilities to a new level. Rapid Dominance requires a sophisticated,
interconnected, and interoperable grid of netted intelligence,
surveillance, reconnaissance, communications systems, and data
analysis to deliver in real time, actionable information to the
shooter. This network must provide total situational awareness and
nodal analysis that enables U.S. forces to act inside the adversary's
decision loop in a manner that on the high end produces Shock and Awe
among the threat parties. Properly detailed nodal analysis of this
grid of knowledge and vulnerability will enable the shutting down of
specific or all essential functions nearly simultaneously. We expect
that through these netted pieces of data, often, the sum of the parts
will yield profound battlefield advantages to the possessor. The
"Rapid" part of the equation becomes the ability to get real time
actionable targeting information to the shooter, whether the shooter
is a tank division, an individual tank, an artillery battery, an
individual rifleman, a naval battle group, an individual ship, an air
wing/squadron, or an aircraft in flight. At whatever unit level, Shock
and Awe are magnified by the speed and effectiveness of targeting. The
ability to achieve Rapid Dominance simultaneously throughout the
battlefield will create strategic Shock and Awe on the opposing
forces, their leadership, and society. When the video results of these
attacks are broadcast real time worldwide on CNN, the positive impact
on coalition support and negative impact on potential threat support
can be decisive.

The top priority of Rapid Dominance should be to deter, alter, or
affect those actions that are either unacceptable to U.S. national
security interests or endanger the democratic community of states and
access to free markets. These political objectives are generally those
envisioned in the major and lesser regional conflict scenarios (MRC &
LRC). Should deterrence fail, the application of Rapid Dominance
should create sufficient Shock and Awe to intimidate the enemy forces
and leadership as well as provide a clear message for other potential
aggressors. Rapid Dominance would not be limited to MRC and LRC
scenarios. It has application in a variety of areas, including
countering WMD, terrorism, and other political problems. The challenge
is that should deterrence fail, the execution of a response based on
Rapid Dominance must be proportional to the threat yet decisive enough
to convey the appropriate degree of Shock and Awe. Rapid Dominance
cannot solve all or even most of the world's problems. It initially
appears that Rapid Dominance should be applied sparingly for egregious
threats or violations of international law, such as:

  - Blatant aggression involving a large state crushing a small state
  - Rogue leader/state sponsored terrorism/use of WMD
  - Egregious violations of human rights on a large scale
  - Threat to essential world markets

Clearly the Information Highway is crossing all sovereign borders and
penetrating even the most closed societies. The inequities and
benefits in closed societies are becoming known to both the public as
well as the bosses. The requirement for Rapid Dominance to develop
sophisticated capabilities to penetrate the Information Highway and
create road blocks as well as control input/outputs to the highway
both overtly and covertly is fundamental to the concept.

These same techniques also apply to law enforcement agencies targeting
international crime and drug cartels using the highway. Closer
interagency cooperation and coordination between military and law
enforcement activities and capabilities must be established.
Experience with the military involvement in the drug war revealed
considerable cultural differences between these organizations.
Overcoming these cultural differences is not easy. The required trust
and confidence for sharing sensitive information and support between
these agencies and the military needs to be developed further.
Interagency coordination and cooperation must be raised to a new level
of sophistication. Some laws may need to be changed. War in Cyberspace
does not recognize domestic versus foreign boundaries. In this
environment the subjects of Information Warfare and Information In
Warfare take on new meaning and require focused development. We must
become proficient within this environment.

This breakdown of traditional boundaries requires a great deal more
thought with regard to the issues of security, vulnerabilities
(their's and our's), and the concept of Rapid Dominance. Does Rapid
Dominance apply only or mostly to the high end of the spectrum,
involving more traditional applications of force to achieve political
objectives as envisioned in the MRC and LRC scenarios? Yet to be
explored is the degree to which a concept of Rapid Dominance applies
to OOTW, countering terrorism against U.S. interests, controlling
rogue states/leaders, etc. What are the political and military
prerequisites to apply Rapid Dominance? Are they applicable and
realistically achievable in the increasingly complex interaction of
national governments/law enforcement organizations and international
as well as local private venture or non-government organizations
(PVOs/NGOs) present worldwide to provide health and humanitarian care
to refugees and other disenfranchised people? Would the concept of
Rapid Dominance offend and generate a counterproductive public
relations backlash from those who believe force should only be used as
a last resort and then with a measurable degree of proportionality?

At this point, one can only raise these types of issues to be
addressed at a later date. This line of questions, concerns, and
issues, as well as a host of others, needs to be raised up front
during the concept development phase of the development of specific
Mission Capability Package concepts. We must be careful that we do not
overvisualize Rapid Dominance versus the reality of credible/affordable
capabilities to execute the concept. Rapid Dominance does not eliminate
the fog of war. Decisions will still be made on the leader's judgment
and confidence in the intelligence provided, the estimate of threat
intentions, knowledge of true center of gravity targets, and confidence
in our own force capabilities to inflict Shock and Awe. In fact, the
ability to penetrate this fog is the key to Rapid Dominance.
Complicating the issue is the fact that the U.S. has not clearly
defined its role in the post-Cold War era. As the world's only credible
superpower, the U.S. can not avoid a leadership role, but neither can
it avoid the focused criticism applied to all leaders. We are in the
classical "damned if we do and damned if we don't" syndrome. One of the
serious side effects of Rapid Dominance could be that if you adapt a
strategy of Rapid Dominance and succeed, you may now own the problem
and be responsible for the solution. Do we know the funding tail to
such a policy and are we as a nation ready to accept this cost when/if
Rapid Dominance is applied in situations that are less than of vital
interest? This subject needs further development beyond the limitations
of this book.

Rapid Dominance and The Future Battlefield

What will the battlefield of the future really look like? The _Desert
Storm_ conflict indicated to many who analyzed it that the real focus
of battle will no longer be force on force as we have traditionally
considered it. By the time the Allied Forces engaged the opposing Iraq
forces, the enemy force for all practical purposes had already been
demoralized and smashed. This was accomplished by establishing air
superiority followed by a carefully orchestrated campaign of precision
air strikes (including Tomahawk missiles). The Iraqi ground forces
were isolated by cutting off logistic support, severing communications
with its leadership, and stinging them with the Shock and Awe achieved
by B-52 strikes on the entrenched Iraqi forces in the open desert.
Shock and awe were introduced in the manner that stealth aircraft
penetrated enemy air defenses and surgically attacked center of
gravity targets with impunity. Shock and awe were also present in the
degree that coalition forces owned the night and could rapidly
maneuver large units in terrain thought to be foreign, imposing, and
unforgiving for the predominantly U.S. forces. Instead, as Colin
Powell noted, the Coalition Forces cut off the head and life lines to
the Iraqi Army in the field and then set about killing it. The fact
that a democratically led coalition could choose not to massacre the
remnants of Iraq's army during its panic-induced retreat underscores
that we knew how much power we had and could employ restraint. The
impact of real-time video media coverage of these events, beamed
simultaneously into government headquarters and civilian living rooms
worldwide, is a phenomenon that impacted events on the battlefield and
further highlighted the compassion of that decision. In dealing with a
"butcher" we could not fall to that level.

The battlefield of the future will not be a neat 200x200 mile box
where you will know everything that is going on inside the box
(although that would be an extremely helpful first step). The
battlefield of the future will encompass every pressure point that
controls or influences the elements of the battle. In examining this
battlefield and the application of force and Shock and Awe, we seek to
mass devastatingly accurate and simultaneous firepower on critical
nodes/targets that count for the mission at hand, rather than
necessarily having to mass large armies in the field to engage one
another. Clearly, the Gulf War raised warfare to a new level with the
demonstrated effectiveness and application of air to ground/water and
surface to ground/water launched precision guided weapons. No longer
will commanders count sorties and tonnage of ordnance dropped, but
rather targets destroyed per sortie! Note: there may well be an issue
of affordability here. We may not be able to get 1) high tech, 2)
MRC/OOTW, and 3) large armies. This does not eliminate the requirement
for sufficient force in the field to defend against an all-out assault
or eject another force and occupy the contested land to ensure the
objectives of conflict are carried out. Air power can punish,
simultaneously destroy center of gravity targets, and so demoralize
the opposing forces that land campaign objectives can be achieved with
smaller forces. In some cases, the Shock and Awe achieved by the air
campaign may result in an early cessation of conflict before the land
campaign is necessary. This is more likely against a modernized,
developed state than an underdeveloped government.

The confluence of several technologies, including all aspects of
stealth aircraft, satellite global positioning, improved weapon
targeting and terminal guidance, cruise missile technology, space
relayed command & control, real-time surveillance from space, the
introduction of JSTARS, and massive application of night vision
techniques, are the first phase of these changes. With elements of
this technology now more and more on the open market to whomever has
the cash or friends, the advantage of obtaining greater situational
awareness and real-time processing of available data cannot be taken
for granted.

In future environments, and short of all-out war, it is clear that
political and military decision making will have to establish close
control of the actionable information distributed to shooters in the
field. It is legitimate to ask why Israeli forces that had air
superiority, UAV surveillance, and extremely accurate firepower
capabilities in the most recent incursion into Southern Lebanon
against Hezbolla terrorist attacks had to respond with an artillery
barrage to one Kaytusha rocket fired from close to a known UN
encampment. When this artillery response resulted in killing more than
100 refugees fleeing the Israeli operation, the result was a public
relations disaster and mission failure for the stated limited Israeli
objectives. This represents a case of ill-conceived application of
Rapid Dominance that resulted in counter-productive Shock and Awe
generating adverse public opinion focused against Israel. This was
also a case of applying high technology and state controlled Rapid
Dominance against a low-technology guerrilla warfare force. Clearly
the Hezbolla appeared to win more than they lost in this exchange. The
lessons learned from this tragic incident as well as the applicability
of Rapid Dominance techniques in this environment need further study.
The massing and movement of refugees in large numbers is a reality and
a planning factor that must be dealt with up front. The fact that the
value of life itself is viewed differently by warring factions must
also be considered. If one side willingly uses refugees as a shield
and the other is trying to protect their lives, then operations to
achieve Rapid Dominance require clear (and perhaps restrictive) rules
of engagement in the field. The rapidity of response may not always be
the right tactic and an escalation of targeting different centers of
gravity rather than responding directly to events in the field
promises to be more effective. The theory of Rapid Dominance clearly
needs further development, gaming, and simulation. Each decision to
apply Rapid Dominance will be unique, complex, risky, and different
than the previous one. Knowledge and information on the battlefield as
well as that concerning center of gravity targets will be incomplete
even with a goal of total situational awareness.

Instruments to Achieve Shock and Awe

Shock and awe are actions that create fears, dangers, and destruction
that are incompre-hensible to the people at large, specific
elements/sectors of the threat society, or the leadership. Nature in
the form of tornadoes, hurricanes, earthquakes, floods, uncontrolled
fires, famine, and disease can engender Shock and Awe. The ultimate
military application of Shock and Awe was the use of two atomic
weapons against Japan in WWII. The Shock and Awe that resulted from
the use of these weapons not only brought an abrupt end to the war
with Japan (through unconditional surrender), but have deterred the
further use of these weapons for over 50 years. Not unexpectedly,
these events did not stop the proliferation or increase in the
destructive power of these weapons by a factor of ten. The holocaust
was a state policy of Shock and Awe that stunned the world in its
brutality and inhumanity. Yet it has not deterred the world from
executing or tolerating atrocities of equal brutality and inhumanity
(Cambodia, Syria, Rwanda, etc.). Similar applications of Shock and Awe
have differing toleration levels and impacts depending on the
environment and political system against which it is applied. As an
example, the massive bombing raids of WWII by Germany and the U.S. did
not result in a sufficient level of Shock and Awe to end the fighting.
The fear of the unknown created by the atomic attacks rather than
their actual destruction was the deciding factor in that theater. The
B-52 raids in Vietnam provided localized elements of Shock and Awe,
but until applied to the capital city of Hanoi, had no impact toward
war termination. When applied in concentrated repetitive strikes in
November/December of 1972 under _Operation Rolling Thunder III_, the
cease fire followed in short order. In fact, throughout history there
have been weapons and tactics designed to create varying degrees of
Shock and Awe. While there has always been shock, awe, and fear
associated with warfare, unless the fear or losses are focused and
great enough, a quick cessation of hostilities under favorable terms
is not certain. How to apply elements of Shock and Awe against rogue
states, terrorist elements, international drug and crime cartels, as
well as in the more traditional MRCs and LRCs needs much further study
and analysis. Shock and awe, to reach the level required to achieve
Rapid Dominance, must also bring fear to those who are in charge. It
must be applied quickly, decisively, and preferably with impunity
(such as stealth bombing with air superiority). The element of
impunity, that is the other side is powerless to stop the damage, is a
key element of this strategy. If on the other hand attacks are
directed at the general public a backlash could be unleased because of
the excessive and brutal losses of innocent civilians.

Much more study and analysis is needed to identify and examine the
pros and cons of a policy that initiates a doctrine of Shock and Awe
for limited objectives rather than responds in kind to a provocation.
What are the limits of the doctrine of Shock and Awe? What
circumstances merit the application? Can Shock and Awe be used to
achieve limited objectives with little or no risk of life to allied
forces or innocent civilians? Can true center of gravity targets be
identified for ideological/terrorist groups? Can levels of Shock and
Awe be categorized by effectiveness and priority of weapons systems?
If so, what are the key enabling technologies? What types of Shock and
Awe would be both impressive and generate high returns? A few
desirable capabilities from a former CINC's perspective are listed

  - Blow up an entire mine field simultaneously in its entirety
    immediately after it had been laid.
  - Destroy the mine laden mine-laying vehicles at their loading
  - Destroy in real time terrorist training camps or publicity
    generating threats such as the recent display of 70 bomb laden
    suicide terrorists pledging to wreak havoc worldwide. (This
    probably requires inside penetration of the targeted
  - Destroy simultaneously all/selective WMD launchers,
    storage/production facilities of a rogue state.
  - Selectively target rogue terrorist leaders as was apparently done
    by the Russians in Chechnya recently when they killed the top
    rebel leader by detecting and homing in on his satellite phone
    conversation (helicopter rocket attack).
  - Stop, divert, capture the cash flow to terrorist elements.

Thoughts on Applications of Shock and Awe

It is the use of Shock and Awe to achieve Rapid Dominance that is so
fascinating and has the greatest potential for leverage if it can be
harnessed in a variety of situations. This basis for Rapid Dominance
requires a clearer under-standing of what our end objectives are than
we usually have when we stumble into the use of military force, often
it seems by default and at the last possible minute. At this point, I
have more questions than answers. How does Rapid Dominance differ by
the goals and missions assigned? What are the key elements to apply
Rapid Dominance for each envisioned threat? What are the most likely
threats for the next 20 years? Is Rapid Dominance applicable to all
these threats? Can we separate Rapid Dominance into categories with
and without Shock and Awe?

In addition to answering these and other questions, it seems to me it
would be helpful to generate a list of desirable capabilities that
would help me select a response option. This list of capabilities
would be useful to focus (1) scarce R&D dollars to fill in the holes
with technology, (2) intelligence and surveillance collection
priorities, (3) innovative thought to further develop the concept (War
College papers and Wargaming series), and (4) development of CINC
plans and requirements to meet these capabilities. Examples of such
capabilities are:

  - Deploying highly effective TBMD and Cruise Missile Defense.
  - Severing all/selective communications between leadership and field
    as well as selective elements by call in the field.
  - Intercepting and transmitting revised orders to selective threat
    field units.
  - Projecting false radar pictures on selective key threat scopes.
  - Inserting fouled fuel in threat storage facilities that generates
    engine failures.
  - Inserting metal/material fatigue to failure attachments on key
    threat systems.
  - Identifying specific location and determining strength and
    material of protected targets of value.
  - Developing dial a setting ordnance capable of destroying all
    hardened targets.
  - Detecting and tracting (destroying at will) all targets of value
    including mobile targets.
  - Detecting and targeting key threat launch systems before launch.
  - Detecting plot and simultaneously destroying an employed mine
    field (land & sea).
  - Making threat submarine movements transparent to targeting at

Obviously, such a wish list should be prioritized and tailored to the
limits of achievable near/mid-term technology and affordability. This
may not even be the right type of capabilities one might want. That
is, we may need a totally non-standard list. My judgment is that we
should develop one or two black "silver bullet" capabilities, if we
get too far afield, the system will not be able to digest the
recommendations. However, the concept of Rapid Dominance requires
stepping to a new level of getting inside the opposition's decision
loop. Rapid Dominance at the ultimate level would enable stopping,
diverting, or changing the decision process and decision executing
machinery/systems either preemptively or reactively in time to ensure
core U.S. security requirements are met.

Rapid Dominance Infrastructure

The current direction and speed of downsizing and acquisition reform
is adequate for the type of forces and capabilities necessary to
implement a Rapid Dominance strategy. I would like to reserve comments
in this area until the project is further developed. We do not need to
raise reasons to discard the concept as too hard before it is
sufficiently defined. I have the feeling that bringing these
conceptual capabilities to realities within a system of systems is
neither cheap nor easy. There is still too much waste and inefficiency
in our defense acquisition process as well as in the overlap between
service requirements and capabilities. Rapid Dominance will not be
service-unique and requires a synergistic approach from planning to

Final Thoughts

The implications of the ongoing revolution in telecommunications and
information processing as it applies to our national security
interests dictate that we need new imaginative concepts of operation
to ensure the efficacy of our international leadership in a multipolar
world. With technology upgrading capabilities by factors of 10 or more
every 18 months, we can no longer afford to have concepts of
operations wait for the technology to reach the field. The concept of
Rapid Dominance requires innovative thought and different directions
than that imbedded in our military hierarchy. We need to introduce the
concept at all levels of military professional education and training.
The best results of this effort will be generated from the younger
minds brought up on the leading edge of the information revolution.
The challenge is to engage those minds in the solution and to take the
risks required to fund priorities enabling the development of this
capability now. Such a cultural change is not easy. One thing is
certain-business as usual will not get us there. The window of
opportunity will close faster than we think.

Appendix B

Defense Alternatives: Forces Required
by General Chuck Horner, USAF (Ret.)

The end of the Cold War will require a review of United States
National Security Policy and a concomitant change in our National
Defense Strategy. This strategy will respond to the changes in the
world's security environment, including the dissolution of the Soviet
Union and Warsaw Pact, the evolution in U.S. security alliances such
as NATO and NORAD, the increased and unique threat posed by the
proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, and the widening of the
spectrum of conflict which will challenge the peace and security of
our nation and its allies.

The causes of conflict and the modes which threats to our security
interests will take have multiplied with the end of the Cold War. The
nuclear weapons of the Cold War remain and will remain for some
considerable time, even though there is a growing appreciation as to
the declining utility of these devices. For sure there will be
continuing pressure throughout the world to eliminate the presence of
nuclear weapons in conjunction with efforts to halt the production,
stockpiling, and deployment of chemical and biological weapons. It is
likely that START II will be followed by START III and IV, as nations
who claim ownership of nuclear weapons realize ownership has a high
cost and marginal payoff. However, progress will be slow due to the
immense importance of achieving symmetry during nuclear disarmament
and the cumbersome and exacting safeguards associated with the
disarmament process. Therefore, for the foreseeable future the threat
of nuclear war must be addressed even though it will be less likely
than before. The spectrum of national security challenges will expand
as the threat of nuclear annihilation subsides.

The decisive victory achieved by the coalition forces over Iraq during
_Desert Storm_ should give future aggressors of major regional
conflict cause to pause. While this does not mean that the threat of
conventional warfare has vanished, it does mean that the national
leader intending to use major conflict to achieve political aims must
carefully craft strategy that will avoid the opportunity for
confrontation with a large coalition force lead by the United States.
Such a strategy might include surprise attack; short intense military
action; the threat or use of nuclear, biological and/or chemical
weapons; advanced surveillance measures and precision munitions; and
warfare carried out on a fragmented battlefield which includes attacks
on the capitals of other nations by means of ballistic missiles or
unconventional warfare forces. This will be warfare for which the
United States is ill trained and ill equipped.

Other challenges to the world's security will take many forms to which
the military forces of the United States can play a constructive role.
These are commonly referred to as Operations Other Than War, even
though they may include the use of force to achieve desired political
goals. They include the increasingly familiar peacemaking,
peacekeeping, show of force, and humanitarian relief efforts. Success
in these operations may well require retraining, re-equipping, or
reorganizing our military forces. Each mission should be evaluated
with respect to what is required to accomplish its unique challenges.
However, the basic doctrine, training, or equipage of the military
forces should be based on what is required to fight the residual Cold
War, as well as deal with the growing demands of a major regional

The political goals upon which our national security strategy should
be crafted are fairly straightforward. First, we should seek to
preserve and invigorate the role of leadership the United States has
maintained since the end of World War II, or the end of the Cold War
(you take your pick). Second, and not apart from the first goal, the
United States must be sufficiently strong to prevent or deter use of
effective military power against us. It is not inconceivable that our
so-called superpower status could be defeated in battle by a crafty
and well-prepared adversary. Witness what happened to the powerful
victors of WWII in Vietnam. Third, U.S. military forces must be of
sufficient size, configuration, and readiness to bring a major
conventional conflict to a successful termination. It goes without
saying that during this process we need to reduce nuclear weapons to
numbers that do not threaten the virtual destruction of the world.
Nuclear deterrence forces also must remain in place. Fourth and
lastly, our military forces must be capable of responding to all the
other tasks and functions for which the national command authority
calls upon the military. This first of challenges should be used to
define the military forces we field, how we train them, and the
methods we use to employ them.

The strategic geographic depth the United States enjoys, bounded by
two oceans on the east and west and non-threatening nations to the
north and south, means that our nation is somewhat immune from attack,
other than by means of infiltration such as a terrorist, or from the
skies by means of long-range aircraft, and cruise or ballistic
missiles. We will require some actions and defenses which address
these threats, but the major portion of our national defense effort
must be placed on building and sustaining offensive forces for combat
in environments other than our own soil. This dictates that our
projection forces must be capable of rapidly responding to an
unforeseen crisis anywhere in the world, keeping in mind that quick,
decisive surprise favors our potential enemies. Given that we have
proven unable to predict the outbreak of conflict in the past, these
forces must also be ready at all times to carry out combat operations
in most any place. There will not be time to modernize their equipment
or train reserve force units. They must be capable of projecting and
sustaining their military power over long distances and operating in
the environment of the enemy's choosing. Last but not least, when
required, they must be capable of decisive combat, not by attrition of
the enemy force in head-to-head combat as was our nature in past wars,
but by Shock and Awe so that conflict resolution is achieved with a
maximum of success at the minimum loss of life in the shortest time.
These characteristics for our projection force cannot be achieved
easily, as the processes that defined our Cold War doctrines, force
structures, equipment, and ways of doing business are loath to change.

The Services' and joint requirements oversight processes that define
the equipment provided our military forces place emphasis on force
structure and the traditional roles for those forces. This inertia can
freeze our land, sea, air, and space capabilities at current or near
current levels, but may prove inadequate to carry out new strategies.
There are few incentives for a Service or the Joint Staff to reward
innovation or divestiture of roles or missions in order to change the
character and mix of land, sea, air, and space forces and to prepare
them to fight the battles we must envisage for the twenty-first

For example, the Services claim lessons learned from _Desert Storm_
which reinforce late twentieth century ways of fighting and ignore the
troublesome aspects which loom in the future and threaten our
traditional view of the battlefield. Many acclaim the role of
precision weapons for our forces, but ignore the threat they pose if
they are in the hands of the enemy. What would be the lessons learned
if several hundred canisters of live Sensor Fused Weapons were
released by a red force ballistic missile on the 24th Division during
a Fort Irwin engagement? Certainly there would be profound changes in
tactics, doctrine, and equipment indicated for the surviving U.S. Army
force. What if radar homing Surface to Air Missiles were employed by
the red force during a Red Flag exercise in the Nevada desert, not
using centralized Soviet tactics/doctrine, but instead using
decentralized yet cooperative engagement operations as would be used
by our best and brightest if unleashed from their stagnant doctrines?
I doubt that the Air Force would be spending millions of dollars
trying to build electronic countermeasures to hide the large number of
expensive and very non-stealthy aircraft they continue to build, such
as the F-15E.

Imagine the shock on our populace if a single cruise missile were
actually allowed to score a direct hit on the Carl Vinson aircraft
carrier during a Solid Shield joint exercise with the attendant loss
of life numbering in the 4,000 to 5,000 range. You would think the
maritime force would reexamine the method it provides air power from
the sea, vital yet today too vulnerable.

How many times do we hear that the space forces are configured to
provide intelligence from overhead only to find in Iraq or Bosnia that
the front line forces receive products that are old, inaccurate and
altered to keep our Soviet foes from gaining knowledge of our
capabilities? Perhaps we if we would dual hat the Director of the
Central Intelligence Agency to the position of J-2, or even
Commander-in-Chief of a regional unified command, there would be vast
improvements in the tasking, evaluation, and delivery of space-derived
intelligence to regional combat forces. Then we might see full
understanding of the increasing role of space forces and implement
change to make them more relevant to our national security strategies
of the next century. Innovation, not size, must be sought because we
do not have the resources to do both. Moreover, large forces drive our
operational level strategy to force-on-force engagements in the
attrition warfare model of the last century with its attendant
causalities and destruction of equipment. George Patton's dictum still
stands that directed his troops not to die for their country, but to
get the other SOB to die for his.

Military operations will also place less emphasis on dying and
destruction. The ever-present television camera ensures that the
horrors of war are broadcast worldwide. War's immorality should some
day lead to its banishment. Unfortunately, that day is probably a long
way away. Nonetheless, weapons of war and their employment tactics
must minimize death and destruction. This is not a call for non-lethal
weapons; it is a call for military forces to get right to the heart of
the enemy and conclude operations as rapidly and efficiently as they
possibly can given their equipment, training, and doctrine. This means
there must be wide flexibility in how they may function. Military
operations will be across a wide spectrum of warfare and will demand
flexibility. Modern war will require our military leadership to
navigate through a changing spectrum of political constraints and ever
changing political goals as each scenario unfolds. We must make our
forces capable of dampening the capacity of the enemy to use force by
controlling the conflict rapidly even when surprised. We failed to do
that tactically in _Desert Storm_ in the case of the SCUD missile
attacks, but were fortunate that the Iraqis were equally inept at
taking political advantage of this card they held and skillfully
employed on the battlefield. We must also look for efficiency before
we even join in battle.

Defense spending has declined as a percent of federal outlays since
the end of the Cold War. Given the leadership role the United States
plays in the world, one could think a reasonable sum to devote to
defense might be three percent of our gross national product,
certainly an amount much smaller than what an average family expends
for its security by means of life, health, causality, car, medical
insurance, and retirement benefits. Given the prospect of long-term,
constant funding, the Department of Defense could then give more
thought to how to build the most modern, efficient military force
within the dollars available. We would no longer define our forces
against some mythical threat or scenario which generates impetus to
protect force size rather than quality. The Army, Navy, Air Force,
Marine Corps, and space forces would be required to build a team based
on a salary cap. You might be willing to pay big bucks for a B-2
superstar quarterback, but you will also need lower cost and capable
riflemen or destroyers to block and tackle. Most of all, you would
reward the Service or Agency who would innovate to provide efficiency.

Manpower has become the driving cost in the all-volunteer military
force. Investment cost of a ship, tank, aircraft or satellite might be
high, but it is the operations and maintenance costs that will drive
how much resources we are required to expend to gain and maintain a
given military capability. Again turning to _Desert Storm_, the huge
advantages of overflight precision munitions dropped from stealth
aircraft has not been understood or accepted by the operations
analysts who argue what we should build or buy next. If it had been,
would the Navy have allowed the A-12 program to fail, would the Air
Force be pouring hundreds of millions if not eventually billions of
dollars into equipping forty year old B-52s with conventional
missiles, or would the Army be maintaining heavy divisions at a
personal cost of $60 billion for 35 years of ownership? Why not build
a Division force equivalent using technology and doctrine to provide a
"heavy division equivalent" force using far fewer troops featuring
speed, shock, precision fire while avoiding the manpower costs of
dollars that in peacetime include added costs for recruitment,
training, and sustaining and in war have an even greater added cost
computed in blood? Why don't we do this? The answer is because it
would require rare innovation, trust, and support from the equally
intransigent federal funding authorities. Most importantly, the
Services are not rewarded for innovation which recognizes the
contributions of another Service or Ally.

Jointness has become an altar at which all military personnel must
worship even if they don't understand or believe. Defenders of the
status quo argue that there is merit in duplication or redundancy and
these arguments have some validity. The question becomes how much
overlap or redundancy between land, sea, air, and space forces can the
nation afford, and what is the opportunity cost to the core competency
of the land, sea, air, or space force that builds and/or maintains the
duplicative force structure. A second yet vastly different question
arises when considering the unique capabilities a Service provides to
support itself and the other services. For example, how much the Air
Force should spend on airlift forces is not cast in terms of what the
envisaged requirement is for airlift, ton miles per day, to support
the mythical scenarios. The alternative sea, land, and space lift
requirements can be postulated; however, if the Navy, Army, or Air
Force do not satisfy those sea, land, and space lift requirement, then
there is a shortfall which will in turn generate a need for more

During _Desert Storm_, nearly 90 percent of the deployed equipment
arrived by sea, but not in time if the Iraqis had continued their
first attack in August. A majority of overland movement was provided
by Saudi Arabian civilian trucks and drivers, and the Army had neither
the resources nor the responsiveness to activate reserve forces needed
to meet the truck and rail support requirements of our military
forces. As a result, costly airlift was used to move forces that
should have traveled by land and sea. If added space capabilities had
been needed, there was almost no capability for the timely launch of a
satellite. Would it not be wise to index spending on land, sea, air,
and space launch on one and other, postulate lift requirements on what
the new force needs as it innovates and slims down. The need to
respond on a moment's notice adds to the value of airlift and
prepositioned ships. The outcome though would be not to allow any of
the Services to divert general support money into core competencies
and thereby shift the jointness burden to another Service.

Innovate. Use the carrier to haul the army to war, and then fly the
fighters aboard after the helicopters or tanks are unloaded. Accept
the benefits of Federal Express that can be federalized during times
of national emergency as a costly, but ready augmentation to military
supply lines that has no cost during the much longer periods of
peacetime. Our nation has other industrial capacities that also have
duplicate military capabilities. They may be 80 percent solutions, but
the cost of ownership could prohibit creation and maintenance of a
military owned and operated 100 percent solution. Iridium telephones
may not be jam-resistant or secure, but 80 percent of the time they
will satisfy the need for 2 percent of the cost. Of course, this
avoids the problem we have created for ourselves with our medieval
acquisition system.

Finally, we must acquire hardware of a type and at a pace that will
assure the future force capability will be enduring. We cannot keep up
with technology using our current ways of acquiring military hardware
and training our people in how to use and maintain it. In many areas
we would be better off to throw it away when it breaks given the low
cost, durability, and reliability of modern solid state electronics.
Why train technicians? Give the troops a gold card and a telephone
number and they know how to spend money more efficiently than do our
government agencies. Make sure the equipment we do buy not only
integrates with that of other services and functions, but that it can
integrate with both older and newer equipment designated to do the
same function. The fighter aircraft secure radio must be capable of
communicating with the ground and sea based forces command and
control, as importantly it must be able to communicate with the next
generation fighter aircraft radio.

The added dimension is the realization that we are unlikely to fight
alone in the future. We gain valuable legitimacy from forming
coalitions, plus it makes up for the growing feeble force structure we
maintain in declining budget years. An enduring force must also
recognize the necessity to operate cooperatively with the forces of
other nations. This means we must more freely release our technologies
to foreign nations so that our military forces can fight side by side,
so that our deployment forces can draw from stocks of others while our
logistics system seeks to catch up with the rapidly deployed combat

In the final analysis, all of this shaping and sharpening of our
military forces will be for naught if there is not an equal change in
the policy side of the equation. What good are highly trained,
efficient, capable land, sea, air, and space forces if the
implementing authorities are incapable of defining principles, goals,
and integrating strategies for their employment? While this is not the
province of the military to solve, the military must understand how
disjointed policy, weak political leadership, or dysfunctional
international cooperation will preclude success on the battlefield.

Again, one of the missed lessons of _Desert Storm_ was the difficult
and successful integration of international leadership achieved by the
President, Secretary of Defense, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of
Staff, Congressional leaders, and allied National Command Authorities
as well as many others. It was this leadership, coupled with the
ineptness of the enemy, that covered over the failures of our Cold
War-equipped and trained forces that fought _Desert Storm_. This does
not take anything away from the military victory, but it does make it
difficult to glean the right lessons for the future. Perhaps that is
why we are so loathe to change our forces at a time when change is
demanded by a new strategic environment and new threats to our
national security. Defining alternative forces in light of the changed
national security environment, goals and strategy raises two
questions: what kind or mix of military force and how much best
balances the requirements and funds available.

Deep Strike: A Key to Shock and Awe

In the world of surprise attack and withdrawal from foreign bases, all
initial responses to combat operations will be some form of deep
strike. Given strategic warning (don't bet on it) after deployment of
our military forces, Deep Strike is a term that relates to the
political boundaries or proximity to military forces. The geography of
the area of conflict will further define deep strike. But a rule of
thumb might be attacks on a target beyond range of surface-based fires
except for ballistic or cruise missiles. More important than range is
the characteristics of the Deep Strike targets. Deep Strike targets
could be classified as ones the enemy does not wish to place at high
levels of risk. They can be characterized by the functions they
perform, such as:

  - Leadership
  - Command and Control (a function of leadership)
  - Control of Military Forces, especially air and space
  - Logistics and Sustainment
  - National Economic Base
  - Internal Security/Political
  - National Will, Theirs and Ours

Intelligence used to nominate the targets for these strikes must
examine the functions and then define the physical objects or people
who comprise the system which is responsible for the successful
operation of the function. You define the system and then attack the
critical elements in order to achieve economy of force. Often these
target sets are difficult to define, as these functions often
represent the enemy's most valuable and therefore protected elements.
The intelligence collection associated with each function will vary
from target set to target set. Large, fixed infrastructure, such as
associated with an electrical grid, lends itself to traditional
reconnaissance and evaluation of technical analysis. Leadership
targets are better defined by using human intelligence and subjective
analysis. In all cases success starts with innovative intelligence
products, which has not been a hallmark of United States operations.
Such intelligence products must be examined through the eyes of the
enemy, their values and concerns. Too often we apply judgments based
on our viewpoint.

One target system may serve the attainment of a number of different
goals. For example, attacks on the electrical power system of the
enemy may debilitate his capacity to command and control his military
forces, operate vital elements of the economy and thus degrade the
political support required to sustain the conflict. This same target
system may be attacked a variety of ways. Most common methods would be
using stealth aircraft and cruise missiles to bomb power plants and
switching centers. Areas with isolated populations lend themselves to
using special operations forces infiltrated to destroy an isolated
power grid node for transmission of energy from one highly populated
area to another. Now it is obvious that computer signals used to
command the power grid are targets as intrusion into the enemy's
control system provides the means to simply turn off electricity to
selected areas. Attacks by all these means achieves even greater
results than the sum of its parts because enemy responses to restore
electrical power will be confused as elements such as computer
intrusion are confused with bombing destruction.

The characteristics of value in attacking these important targets
systems are simultaneity, impunity, and timing. The greatest effect
will be achieved when the strikes are coordinated in such a manner as
to inflict maximum Shock and Awe on the enemy element. This means
operations must be coordinated and orchestrated carefully and flexibly
as enemy reaction to the attack is evaluated. Moreover, presence is
projected when a combination of functions or target sets supporting a
variety of functions are struck at the same time with impunity. In
order to achieve maximum results, the attacks will need to be
evaluated quickly in order to define previously unknown elements of
the system or how the enemy perceives the impact on his system.
Finally, the attacker must be alert as to the interaction of the
functions as the effects of these Deep Strikes begin to take hold. In
order to achieve desired levels of Shock and Awe, the attacker must
know the current and projected effects of his strikes against elements
of the enemy's residual system. If the trick is to define the system
of targets needed to conduct successful Deep Strike, it is even more
important to know how to alter the initial plan as the battle unfolds
and timing becomes everything.

The characteristics of forces needed to carry out Deep Strike are long
range, flexibility, precision, survivability, and speed. Cost of the
operation is a factor; however, system cost must include peacetime
operations and maintenance costs as well of the costs during actual
combat. There is also a human element in the cost of combat operations
which escalates rapidly as military force is misused. The total cost
of these operations must also address the cost of intelligence used to
support Deep Strikes. Intelligence operations may be the most costly
due to the importance of these targets to the enemy. Alternatively,
the human intelligence associated with these attacks may be the most
inexpensive since their national importance makes them vulnerable to
knowl-edgeable dissidents.


Deep Strike is defined by distance, albeit relative distance. Some of
the target sets may lend themselves to circumstances beyond the
nation's control; for example, Seoul borders on North Korea. Our
protective oceans mean that likely conflict is offshore. The
likelihood our next adversary may have access to surveillance,
precision munitions, and long-range delivery systems dictates that
much of our operations will be at long range, lest our forces come
under attack at their ports, camps, and bases. There will be a need
for systems capable of projecting military force from distances of
10,000KM. A sizable portion of the force must be able to deliver
ordnance of enemy targets from ranges in excess of 5,000KM. Launching
attacks from inside 1,000KM of the enemy forces will demand that
friendly forces be protected from attack by means of active and
passive defenses and dispersal. This latter constraint will preclude
achieving levels of Shock and Awe through simultaneous attack.


Great cost benefits are attained if the vehicle used to deliver the
attack is reusable. Keep in mind that the force built for the most
demanding conflict must also be flexible for other operations.
Therefore, while ballistic missiles provide great range, speed, and
survivability in reaching their target, their cost become prohibitive
in large-scale operations which endure beyond a few hours, or in
smaller-scale operations where the goals are modest and the demands on
other military forces are low. Simultaneous combat operations require
a number of expensive, expendable platforms in the opening hours of
the conflict if our response is to be timely and induce shock. Awe is
not achieved if the enemy is permitted to gain experience in being
attacked; at best you may make them numb. Alternatively, reusable
long-range survivable systems provide needed flexibility to alter the
Deep Strike plan as it unfolds. The food chain of weapons systems
ranges from the most valuable systems such as ballistic missiles,
cruise missiles, and stealth bombers, to less valuable, but useful,
stealth fighter and long-range surface-to-surface high trajectory


Discriminate fires are important due to the likelihood of people and
structures being in close proximity to the desired target. It is not
improbable that the national command center is located next door to a
children's hospital.

Discriminate fires require precision in target cordinate
identification and location. Precision does not mean "small warhead,"
although there is a beneficial impact as the right amount of explosive
is placed on the target due the penalties imposed on the delivery
vehicle required to carry the warhead long distances. All operations
involving the use of firepower must also understand and evaluate the
beneficial aspects of using non-destructive elements in conjunction
with the attack to include all aspects of the so-called information

Appendix C

Enduring Realities and Rapid Dominance
by General Fred Franks

Rapid Dominance, as we see it, is a markedly different concept for the
use of force to gain national security ob jectives. At its core, Rapid
Dominance blends unique capabilities of land, sea, air, space, and
special operating forces. It is important to note the vital role of
jointness in using forces from all elements and resisting the lure of
gimmicks and cost-free options that may appear within the reach of
high technology but are not.

Examining current joint force capabilities reveals some enduring
truths that should be used to evaluate future concepts. Joint force
commanders today benefit from the wide array of capabilities available
to the joint warfighting team. The ability to combine and use forces
from all dimensions in a variety of powerful combinations to fit
mission circumstances presents a versatility of capabilities that
makes defense by adversaries difficult. Balance and versatility are
key. Balance in capabilities and the inherent versatility to combine
them in unpredictable, yet highly effective ways has served U.S.
national security interests well since the end of the Cold War. One
has only to look at the variety of methods employed in Panama (1989),
Desert Storm (1991), Somalia (1992), Rwanda (1993), Haiti (1994), and
Bosnia (1995) in both war and operations other than war. Joint force
commanders employed, and in some cases invented, new combinations of
balanced capabilities and were willing to go beyond the confines of
service doctrines to fit mission circumstances. For example, a U.S.
Army brigade of the 10th Mountain Division with helicopters replaced
much of the carrier air wing and flew off the carrier Eisenhower
during the Haiti operation. This force packaging capability is an
advantage unique to the U.S.

As we look beyond the present to future and bolder defense concepts
such as Rapid Dominance, the key will be to maintain that balance in
land, sea, air, space, and special operating forces combinations
available to the joint force commander. U.S. military forces are now
multidimensional in capabilities, able to use force in ways
unpredictable to an adversary. U.S. forces also have enormous
versatility, able to be used in war and what have become termed
operations other than war. Balance permits that.

Moreover, joint force commanders, recognizing this capability, have
found ways to introduce land forces even more rapidly given today's
methods. Recently, a brigade of the 1st Cavalry Division rapidly
deployed by air from Ft. Hood, Texas, to Kuwait and was able to fall
in on equipment forward positioned and be available for combat soon
after arrival. A recent article in Navy Times pointed out, "In fact,
as each wave of soldiers arrived in Kuwait, they were heading north --
combat ready -- within six hours." This was a dramatic example of the
rapid ability to combine land forces with air and sea forces using
both distant forces with those already in the theater. That
combination in that set of strategic circumstances provided a rapid
deterrent in an area of vital national security interests to the U.S.

Another enduring truth is the need for staying power and ensuring that
capacity is perceived by a potential adversary. Staying power means
the ability to press the initial advantage gained until the strategic
objective is achieved. On-the-ground presence, in addition to forces
in theater, as demonstrated in Kuwait in 1993 and again in 1996,
provided commitment and staying power to convince Iraq that it would
be disastrous to consider any form of military action. The inherent
staying power of land forces, wherever future tactical concepts may
lead, makes them a powerful contributing partner in our Rapid
Dominance concept.

Finally, there is the issue of physical control. Control combines with
staying power to defeat the enemy's will. One of the many lessons of
Desert Storm is that it was not until after land forces attacked Iraq
and Kuwait that Iraqi forces were expelled from Kuwait. Despite the
awesome shock and destructive effects of attacks f rom the air and
sea, it was only after coalition ground attacks to extend control to
both Kuwait and southeastern Iraq by defeat and destruction of
defending Iraqi forces that strategic objectives were secured. Control
on land was extended past the cease fire until such time in April as
the UN passed a permanent cease fire and sanctions resolution. Land
forces remaining in southeastern Iraq provided the staying power and

The size, shape, and composition of forces that will fight in all
elements will assuredly change in the future. Early work done in
advanced warfighting experiments out of TRADOC's Battle Labs beginning
in 1992 and growing into the current Force XXI and other promising
capabilities as well as by the USMC at MCCDC at Quantico are the
precursors of how change may be discovered and implemented. The
challenge is to ensure that all components of our fighting power are
properly balanced and combined into the most effective and lethal
mixes of land, sea, air, space, and special operating forces. This is
the heart of the Rapid Dominance force of the future.

Extension of real and perceived control over the will and ability of
any adversary to oppose or threaten us will insure and guarantee
success of initial operations, thereby maximizing Shock and Awe.
Indeed, getting forces on land rapidly and operationally will be a
major factor in achieving the enduring effects of Shock and Awe.
Certainly, as forces on land evolve and change, they must meet the
requirements of rapidity and sustainment and are vital components of
any mix of forces that seek by Shock and Awe to stun and then rapidly
dominate an adversary to achieve U.S. national security objectives.

We strongly feel that we as a nation cannot stand still in exploring
defense alternatives. We must seize this time to be bold in our
thinking. More thought and hypotheses with operational methods that
break through or expand current service doctrines are needed from a
joint perspective even as services look to the future from their own
service perspective. Then there must be rigorous experiments using
both high fidelity simulations and actual joint field trials to
determine the worth of these hypotheses to blend the wide array of
technology available to the total joint force and according to bold
new concepts. The results will determine the worth of Rapid Dominance
concepts by judging whether they will permit even more balanced,
versatile, and lethal combinations to fit known and anticipated future
strategic circumstances.

Study Group Members

*/L.A. "Bud" Edney/* is a retired Navy admiral and naval aviator. A
veteran of over 350 combat missions in Vietnam, Admiral Edney's senior
billets included Vice Chief of Naval Operations and Commander-in-Chief,
Atlantic Command/Supreme Allied Commander, Atlantic. Admiral Edney has
an advanced degree from Harvard and was a 1970 White House Fellow.

*/Fred M. Franks/* is a retired Army general and a highly experienced
combat armor officer. During the Gulf War, he commanded VII Corps and
last served as Commanding General of the Training and Doctrine
Command. He has two master's degrees from Columbia and is a graduate
of the National War College. He is the author of _Into the Storm, a
Study in Command,_ written with Tom Clancy to be published by G.P.
Putnam's Sons in 1997.

*/Charles A. Horner/* is a retired Air Force general and a highly
experienced combat fighter and attack pilot. During the Gulf War,
General Horner commanded all allied air forces. His last assignment
was Commander-in-Chief, Space Command. A graduate of the National War
College, he now serves as consultant to government and industry.

*/Jonathan T. Howe/* is a retired Navy admiral and both a submarine and
surface warfare qualified officer. He has served as Deputy Assistant
to the President for National Security Affairs, Deputy Chairman of
NATO's Military Committee, Commander-in-Chief Allied Forces Southern
Europe/CINC U.S. Naval Forces Europe, and was Special Representative
of the Secretary General of the UN to Somalia. He has a Ph.D. from the
Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy and currently heads a charitable

*/Harlan K. Ullman/* divides his time between the worlds of business and
public policy. A former naval person, he is with the Center for
Strategic and International Studies and the Center for Naval Analyses.
His last book, _IN IRONS: U.S. Military Might in the New Century,_ was
published by the National Defense University Press in 1995.

*/James P. Wade, Jr./*, a scientist by training, is a West Point
graduate and infantry officer. He has held many senior positions in
DOD, including head of Policy Planning, Assistant to SECDEF for Atomic
Energy, Assistant Secretary for Acquisition, and Acting Head of
Defense Research and Engineering. He is Chairman and CEO of DGI which
conducted this study.

*/Keith Brendley/* is a Vice President with Defense Group Inc. He was
formerly with Sarcos Research Corporation, RAND, System Planning
Corporation and NASA, Ames Research Center. He holds mechanical
engineering degrees from the University of Illinois (B.S.) and the
University of Maryland (M.S.).

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