Today, the direct impact of bullets and
bombs is often much less than the propaganda opportunities and
perceptions they create. A famous dead Prussian once said war is a
continuation of politics, but the reality today is that war is politics
and nearly every act is an attempt to gain strategic influence over
friends, foes, and neutrals. YouTube, blogs, and all forms of other
media and connectivity everywhere means every GI Joe and Jihadi gets at
least a bit part in the theater of information, for better or worse.
imagine Karl Rove takes this to heart and instead of the US telling
foreign audiences what we want our own people to hear, we tell them the
truth about their false idols?
coups like Abu Gharib and even the Urban Tourniquet aren’t met by
American messaging (I dare not use the P-word for in America thou
taints thyself on use) based on facts. In fact, they aren’t met by
anything at all. Remember the “blooper” video of the “fearsome” Zarqawi
unable to handle his gun while wearing his spiffy white New Balance
shoes? What an opportunity to mock the man, but we were limited because
the US had built him up to be something he wasn’t (or at least much
more than the thug he was). And then there’s Sadr and his childlike
rants to his subordinates?
Hopefully someone like him at least.
The US really has to do something about Strategic Communication / Strategic Influence / Political Warfare. It needs this as a significant capability.
Filed under: 4GW Tagged: | Strategic Communcation|Influence|Political Warfare