Multi-domain battle is a reality, but requires the consideration of a combination of physical and cognitive domains that will affect the outcome of future battles. Cyber is an extremely important aspect for multi-domain battle; enemies no longer need a traditional weapon system to create losses and challenges on the battlefield. Russia’s ability to synchronize their cyber efforts with traditional military pressure has been incredibly illuminating and raises questions about how we would defend against such attacks. However, we shouldn’t go so far down the cyber rabbit hole that we lose sight of other less concrete, but no less critical dimensions of warfare.
The operational force and its commanders must deliberately integrate education into their leader development programs, complementing the efforts of the institutional Army. To enable this, we must increase our awareness of the existing educational resources, maximize our use of these resources and identify shortcomings to assist our leaders in their efforts. The Human Dimension and human performance will be more important in future operational environments than ever before and education is the key to our success.
The power of the narrative dimension is found in the sense of coherence they provide of how the world is, how people are, and how to respond to disruptions of that worldview. The Human Dimension fails to account for their organizing functions to elicit support for a vision of the future, promote clarity of the discourse between people of different social groupings, or unpack the factors influencing human behavior.
There are two calls to action in the Human Dimension White Paper. The first is to senior leaders to provide resources for developing our junior leaders. The second is to junior leaders to begin developing their peers and subordinates. These two must happen in conjunction with each other. And that can only occur through clear and open dialogue between all ranks.
In Foreign Policy’s National Security Blog, Colonel Scott Gerber (USA) recently attempted to make out the Air Sea Battle (ASB) Concept as foolishness. Personally, I am extremely concerned about building an operational concept around a policy shift known as the “Asia Pivot.” My greatest concern is that the United States has not sufficiently fleshed out the strategic underpinnings of translating the Asia Pivot policy into action, however setting that aside for now, I will revisit that in a follow-on post. What I find striking about Gerber’s offering here is how he insists on building a straw man of mythological proportions in order to knock over the ASB Concept.