• My Tweats

  • Flickr Photos

  • Advertisements

Links – Political Warfare / StratCom / Psyops / Related

Note: I have been hording these, so they are not all current.


The constant portrayal of government agencies as being more villainous than terrorists only serves to facilitate the ideological war being waged by terrorists…


Got that? 2008 is right around the corner and “Pretty soon we’re going to have to go to an Internet strategy. Are you effin kidding me? We should have had an internet strategy 10 years ago. This is a perfect example of why I started thinking in terms of the strategic citizen. We cannot rely on these government bureaucracies to adapt quickly enough to changes in technology. We cannot rely on them to think creatively about strategic communication. Therefore they cannot be relied upon to contribute significantly to the current war of ideas. Oh they’ll continue plugging along doing the same kind of news shows they’ve been doing for the past 50 years. But they will not be innovators, rather like other industrial age media organizations they will stick to their outdated methods until change is forced upon them. Strategic citizens offer the only effective way to keep up with the pace of change.


I love this! There are a bunch of people doing good things out there. This also serves as a lesson for good guys. Be careful what use you make of hotlinked images.


Their “ultimate Iraqi Tet” would feature simultaneous terror strikes in every major Iraqi city. These simultaneous strikes would inflict hideous civilian casualties with the goal of discrediting Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki’s and General David Petraeus’ assessments that Iraqi internal security has improved. The terrorists would reduce Iraqi government buildings to rubble. Striking the Green Zone would be the media coup de grace, intentionally echoing North Vietnam’s assault on the U.S. embassy in Saigon. Al-Qaida terrorists would also attack Shia shrines. Kidnapping or assassinating of senior Iraqi leaders would be another objective.


If it isn’t already happening in secret somewhere, it’s high time to put together an organized effort to combat the Jihad ideologically: A Manhattan Project of counterjihad memetic engineering. Memetic engineering promises to deliver a platform for 4GW/5GW ideological warfare against the Jihad. Al Qaeda has been operating in the ideological war nearly unopposed, with reflexive assistance from the neocommunists of the transnational progressive NGOs and leftist political parties. What will it take? Memetic engineering must be a process of engineering a system of memes: A systems engineering process for meme systems. That much is obviously true simply from the definitions of the words. Let’s look into…


Meatball 1 finds good stuff, like Finding Weakness in Jihadist Propaganda by
MAJOR Timothy R. King, all of which you should read. It’s a 58-page .pdf, so before anybody’s eyes glaze over, let’s focus on MAJ King’s first chapter…

Found via http://cannoneerno4.wordpress.com/2007/12/19/achmed-the-dead-terrorist/

Its Ridicule Warfare via Achmed the Dead Terrorist!


“Mohammed, this is Allah. You’ve been a very bad boy, Mohammed. My justice upon your ass is going to hurt! But if you bring the infidels Osama’s head when they let you out I might have mercy on your scraggily ass. Oh, one more thing. Leave the goats and little boys alone from now on, capiche?””



For about three years I have been carrying this idea of volunteer civilian infowarriors around in the back of my mind…


I remember the last Tet. Yeah, I know, I’m a geezer. But this time I won’t be a helpless 6th-Grader. This time I’m empowered. This time I and my pards have the power to inoculate or to immunize individuals in advance of any propaganda blitz by any of the organized persuaders who seek to gain by carrying the terrorist’s water.


It’s very difficult to turn our minds away from our central governments. We are long accustomed to looking to them for information, instructions, and solutions. But in our current struggle, not only is the government of no help, it is an active impediment to success.

And not just our governments. No large, centralized, hierarchically organized bureaucratic structure will be of any assistance against the worldwide networks of mujahideen. Anything that follows the government model — corporations, large religious groups, national charities, political parties — will exhibit the same inadequacies as our governments. If it has a head office and a chain of command, then for our purposes it’s useless.


…The authors said the press was “crucial to building political pressure to halt military operations,” from the Iraqi government and the Coalition Provisional Authority, which resulted in a “unilateral cease-fire” by U.S. forces…


Facing unfavorable publicity and a lack of Iraqi governmental support, the military ceased their assault and turned the town over to a militia that let the insurgents continue their operations. In sum total, the insurgents scored a massive propaganda victory, demonstrated to the Iraqi people that they could stand up to the American occupiers, and undermined cooperation and trust between Coalition forces and the Iraqi government.


Over the past several months, National Journal has examined the 2006 Lancet article, and another [PDF] that some of the same authors published in 2004; probed the problems of estimating wartime mortality rates; and interviewed the authors and their critics. NJ has identified potential problems with the research that fall under three broad headings: 1) possible flaws in the design and execution of the study; 2) a lack of transparency in the data, which has raised suspicions of fraud; and 3) political preferences held by the authors and the funders, which include George Soros’s Open Society Institute.


“Mr. Coughlin was accused directly by Mr. Islam of being a Christian zealot or extremist “with a pen,” according to defense officials. Mr. Coughlin appears to have become one of the first casualties in the war of ideas with Islamism.”


Two basic guides for individuals to counteract the pressures of a propaganda blitz from professional persuaders:
Axiom 1: When they intensify. downplay.
Axiom 2: When they downplay, intensify.

Propaganda is used here to mean organized persuasion: for example, both commercial advertising and public relations, and also political and governmental efforts to persuade.Propaganda seeks some kind of response (now or later) from the people who are the target audience. Two general categories are: Command propaganda which seeks a specific, immediate response:”Buy this… Do that … Vote for … Join … Fight ….” (Now!) Conditioning propaganda which seeks to mold public opinions, assumptions, and attitudes on a long-term widespread basis, often as a prelude for command propaganda. (Later)

Counter-propaganda is used here to mean an attempt to inoculate or to immunize individuals in advance of any propaganda blitz by any of the organized persuaders: from any advertisers, from any politicians (Left or Right), or from any governments (domestic or foreign). In the future, assume that professional persuaders will be more sophisticated (not less so) and more organized than they are now, creating an ever accelerating imbalance between the professional persuaders and the average “persuadee” — the average citizen

These counter propaganda axioms are means to an end — a defensive strategy, or a “defensive rhetoric” for receivers. The goal is to equalize the situation between the professional persuaders and their audiences, to counter-balance, to seek a better equilibrium, to bring about a situation of mutuality in which the audience is more nearly on par with the speakers. Realistic assumptions must be made: power exists, weakness exists. The strong do not voluntarily give up power. Total equality will never exist. Yet, a movement toward equality is better than a movement away.


A friend of mine has two brothers serving both in Iraq and Afghanistan. Together, they have been deployed seven times to these war zones. Jake Rademacher is a documentary filmmaker of real talent who had the guts to go to Iraq and live with his brothers outside the Green Zone for several weeks. His film, Brothers at War, is an actual documentary: that is to say, he did not script it and he does not push a viewpoint. What he does do is show his two brothers living in a country that is by turns violent and gentle, with people good and bad, brave and cowardly, and through it all you get to see why his two brothers chose to go back there and risk their lives again and again.

If this film were shown to the American people, support for the war would go up thirty points; not because it has a point to make but simply because it doesn’t. You just see what goes on and you make your own decision.

Brothers at War, and the writings of Michael Yon, Michel Totten and precious few others, are worth entire divisions. They have allowed us a perspective of what is really going on over there. They have lived there for years, long enough to know the people and what makes good news or bad. They have earned my trust and deepest respect for unblinking and courageous reporting that has put the MSM to shame. I suspect Michael Yon has spent more time within the sound of gunfire than any other MSM reporter has total time in country. And he and Mike Totten and a few others have allowed that signal – that small, pure signal – to escape into the ether. Or rather, into the Ethernet.

We have held this line – barely – with the efforts of men like that and a few private citizens writing in their pajamas. The political leadership needs to get in this fight. Now. ”
“When Michael Moore makes a hugely successful film praising Saddam’s paradise and calling these people who bomb women and children in marketplaces “freedom fighters,” and when an election turns and places into Congressional power a political party dedicated to reproducing that helicopter tableau as soon as possible… what would you do? Because if you guess wrong and the Americans leave, you will be taken out into the street in front of your family and have your head sawed off.

I think the Surge has had spectacular success not because of the additional troops so much as for the fact that when the media and the Democrats demanded we cut and run… we did not cut and run. We doubled down. When the calls for defeat and dishonor were at their loudest – sad to say a not unwarranted street rep we had made for ourselves – somehow, somehow we simply just hung on and gave them not a retreat but a charge.

Jesus Christ, but that must have gotten someone’s attention. Yes, the Surge is working. But I believe it is not a surge of boots that is doing the work so much as it is a surge of hope.

And hope… well, hope is a dangerous thing. For every day that Iraq returns not only to normal but to free normal is a day remembered. It is a day to which other, darker days may be compared.


Rather than simply advertising to buttress recruitment, the Military should be producing . . . propaganda. Gasp! There once was a time when the artists in Hollywood took care of showing the people just how great and courageous the American GI’s were, but those days are long gone. So what’s wrong with a little self-promotion? Why doesn’t the Military run ads in the homes of the constituents of the Reids, Pelosis, Murthas, et al? Forget talking about how effective and strong the U.S. Soldier is; show the American public how flippin’ good the American Soldier is, and be not ashamed in doing so.


Al-Qaida video messages of Osama bin Laden and Ayman al-Zawahri can now be downloaded to cell phones, the terror network announced as part of its attempts to extend its influence.


The Democrat / al Qaeda alliance is a phrase you will hear again.”
And so it was settled. Al Qaeda would attack Iraqis, creating media events that the Western media could use to try to lose the war at home. It was understood that this strategy would turn the Iraqis against al Qaeda, losing the war on the ground, but maybe not before the Democrats and their media allies managed to lose the war in America. It would be a race: could the Democrat/ al Qaeda alliance create defeat in America before the American military would win the war in Iraq?


This is a story that bears watching. There is a pattern developing here, and with the Haditha Marines, and Blackwater. The enemy is reducing our kinetic combat power through Information Operations, Military Deception, Propaganda and hoax.


Success will be less a matter of imposing one’s will and more a function of shaping behavior — of fiends, adversaries, and most importantly, the people in between.” Our own people must also be included. Success in irregular warfare requires communication superiority, but to date our enemies have been more successful. Our conflict with the Third Jihad will be won or lost in this battlefield.


The threat of the global Islamic revivalist movement (Third Jihad) has brought to our attention the fallacy of the war and peace duality. We must now think in terms of a war-irregular warfare-peace trilogy. During policy formulation we must think of three subdivisions of conflict and cooperation — each having unique means, strategies, tactics, methods and techniques.


The simple fact is that we never won the Cold War as decisively as we should have. Yes, the Berlin Wall fell, and the Soviet Union collapsed. This removed the military threat to the West, and the most hardcore, economic Marxism suffered a blow as a credible alternative. However, one of the really big mistakes we made after the Cold War ended was to declare that Socialism was now dead, and thus no longer anything to worry about. Here we are, nearly a generation later, discovering that Marxist rhetoric and thinking have penetrated every single stratum of our society, from the Universities to the media. Islamic terrorism is explained as caused by “poverty, oppression and marginalization,” a classic, Marxist interpretation.

What happened is that while the “hard” Marxism of the Soviet Union may have collapsed, at least for now, the “soft” Marxism of the Western Left has actually grown stronger, in part because we deemed it to be less threatening. The “hard” Marxists had intercontinental nuclear missiles and openly said that they would “bury” us. The soft Marxists talk about tolerance and may seem less threatening, but their goal of overthrowing the evil, capitalist West remains the same. In fact, they are more dangerous precisely because they hide their true goals under different labels. Perhaps we should call it “stealth Socialism” instead of soft Socialism.

One of the readers of Fjordman blog once pointed out that we never had a thorough de-Marxification process after the Cold War, similar to the de-Nazification after WW2
We are now paying the price for this. Not only has Marxism survived, it is thriving and has in some ways grown stronger. Leftist ideas about Multiculturalism and de-facto open borders have achieved a virtual hegemony in public discourse, their critics vilified and demonized. By hiding their intentions under labels such as “anti-racism” and “tolerance,” Leftists have achieved a degree of censorship of public discourse they could never have dreamt of had they openly stated that their intention was to radically transform Western civilization and destroy its foundations.

The Left have become ideological orphans after the Cold War, or perhaps we should call them ideological mercenaries. Although the viable economic alternative to capitalism didn’t work out, their hatred for this system never subsided, it merely transformed into other forms. Multiculturalism is just a different word for “divide and conquer,” pitting various ethnic and cultural groups against each other and destroying the coherence of Western society from within.

Leftist Strategic Citizen and Master Propagandist Jon Steward using the ridicule techniques at Hot Air


Joel Pollak (no relation) reports on his blog that Charles Enderlin, the France 2 television reporter implicated in the Mohammed al-Dura fabrication, admitted at a talk at Harvard last night that the famous scenes of Yasser Arafat donating blood after the 9/11 attacks were, like the footage of the IDF killing al-Dura, staged…


Some in the media, being extremely altruistic, will knowingly and happily go along with such charades. In addition, the extreme altruism of some of the rest will cause them not to exercise their critical faculties. They will be so eager for any evidence that Israel is imposing hardship on the Palestinians that they will lap, up such stunts. It is as if the tent is really a building, and there is not alternative to artificial light within. In a sense, they will see what they want to see.
I think they’re correct. All of this behavior is indeed “of a piece”. It is a deliberate attempt to use the West’s altruist moral code against it, by creating humanitarian crises, and either blaming the West for them or asking for its help to alleviate them, whichever best serves the goals of the moment. There is psychological warfare and then there is this use of the enemy’s moral code as a weapon. Perhaps we should call it “humanitarian warfare”.


The impact of Smith-Mundt must be addressed before any substantial revision to America’s information capabilities will succeed. Doing so will result in more effective capabilities that conform to the modern world and will have a greater ripple effect through government than any new doctrine or report could possibly hope for.


Of course we shouldn’t stop there, strategic citizens could produce comic books and every other kind of media as well. Our larger conception of info ops must include private enterprise, “civilian information support teams” to complement our “military information support teams…

Ridicule Warfare enabler : http://www.che-mart.com/


Careful, indeed. It turns out that on Tuesday, as our Eli Lake reported on page one of yesterday’s Sun, the director of national intelligence, Mr. McConnell says he now regrets the phrasing of the unclassified estimate that so stirred America’s enthusiasts of diplomacy. In testimony before the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, Mr. McConnell went further. He noted that Iran is developing both the long range ballistic missiles and the nuclear fuel for a potential weapon. What had halted, it turns out, was work to design the actual warhead and secret enrichment activity. The Iranians continued to enrich uranium in the open in Natanz in defiance of two Security Council resolutions.

Ridicule Warfare Enabler: http://www.teddybearmuhammad.com/


Today, there is a misconception that the U.S. government isn’t supposed to propagandize its own people. Despite the role of the Press Secretary, the Department Heads, and the NSC (in 43s first term), we still fantasize there ain’t no propagandizing. Smith-Mundt is liberally cited as the cause of this mythical prophalactic.


Some of the most famous Google bombs are also expressions of political opinion (e.g. “liar” leading to Tony Blair or “miserable failure”, or even simply “failure” leading to the White House’s biography of George W. Bush). In general, one of the keys to Google’s popularity has been its ability to capture what ordinary Web citizens (“netizens”) believe to be important via the information provided in webpage links. However, Google is reluctant to stop organized or commercial exploitation of their algorithms.


It looks like the new Rambo flick is resonating and inspiring many Burmese. Hollywood could be making movies that would inspire Americans and especially people in the Muslim world in the same way. Movies that could do good by contributing to the ideological war against Islamic extremists and make money by making movies that people actually want to see. So will Hollywood learn the lesson of Rambo? It seems silly to even ask the question: of course they won’t.


To begin with, we must accept that the romantic days of the United States Information Agency are gone.
Unlike half a century ago, the U.S. military has a clear voice and is arguably our dominant public diplomat. Therefore, simply resurrecting “USIA” without reorganizing our national information capabilities across civilian and military lines would turn it into just another voice struggling to be heard over America’s military commanders, spokespersons, and warfighters.
What needs to change? First and foremost, we must…


IO is a secondary area of operations for the United States. Good IO programs cannot remediate incompetent statecraft or poor military leadership or put a “happy face” on obvious disasters but poor or absent IO capabilities can fritter away the capital that successful diplomacy or military action can accrue when our enemies accusations go unanswered.


The United States has granted veto power over any military operation it might attempt to whoever can delegitimize the mission and kill domestic support. All current and future enemies and adversaries have to do to paralyze us is partner with domestic oppositional elements such as anti-war organizations, anti-Administration politicians, wealthy Hungarian benefactors, the Perpetually Aggrieved, Guilty White Liberals, the Politically Correct, Multi-cultural, Carbon Dispensationists and Transnational Progressives who can be relied upon to activate their As Sahab media arms in a coordinated effort to magnify all imperfections, exaggerate all negative aspects, accept at face value all enemy narratives, treat all friendly narratives with withering scorn and total skepticsm, and hamsting any effort to employ American power.
Our enemies and adversaries will never be held to these standards.
America is going out of the super power business. The ability of enemies, adversaries, and internal opponents to deny legitimacy exceeds .gov/.mil’s ability to sustain or build legitimacy. Lucky for us .gov/.mil ain’t the only game in town.


Clearly, the status quo is unacceptable. Smith-Mundt must either be revised or abolished. Either way, more discussion is required and now is the time to spark it.


I could think of two state actors that western cyber-militias might transgress. Those are:
1. Law Enforcement and;
2. Intelligence agencies.
Let us imagine a scenario where a sub-state actor like the FBI…

Newish Blog: http://www.spinhunters.org


For a while now I have believed that the best model for citizen self-mobilization and strategic communications is political activism rather than advertising/marketing. (I’m really tired of hearing about how we need to “re-brand” America.)

Update: Here is an older post of related links of mine.

17 Responses

  1. We need to get more eyes on this.

  2. Yes we do. Sadly, in the real physical world, most (hmmm…all?) of my friends and family could care less. They are too busy living.

  3. Check your email. I have sent runners to deliver a tomahawk, a wampum belt, and a bundle of red sticks to the soldier societies of the Amriki tribe.

  4. Eye opening and very clever. I’m in the UK so our media has a different stance.
    Clearly there is more than initially meets the eye.
    Keep it up.

  5. It is kind of sad that for most of humanity’s thousands of years of history, 99% of the propaganda concerning “how good our soldiers are” were untrue, distortions, exaggerations, etc.

    Now that a nation finally has a military that combines the best of human traits, nobody seems to even know about it.

    A sad testament to human foolishness.

  6. Indeed. There are enough atrocity by militaries going on that it is easier for most to believe it must happen.

    I don’t have the link handy, but I read something about the Israel army where some leftist academics were trying to determine why there was not wide spread murder, raping and looting by the Israel. They were very puzzled. In their lefty addled brain, it was expected that the Israelis would of course rape/loot/murder…so that hat to figure out why it was not happening (good order and discipline, was not considered).

  7. As with scott beauchamp, it has been demonstrated that there is a strong minority group that likes to motivate war criminals to talk about their crimes and the crimes they have witnessed, on the belief that the military or government are covering up atrocities because they are so extensive and often happen in isolated or dangerous locations.

    These people, ironically, are never able to prevent war crimes, they are just, coincidentally of course, out there to promote war crimes and to promote people talking about them.

    The idea of improving human behavior and the human condition, while leaving human nature alone, seems to be a very low priority item, assuming it is even on the list.

  8. […] into my Grand Unified Field Theory of Counterinsurgent Supportive Communications magnum opus that I failed to interest greater talents than mine in […]

  9. It’s not forgotten!

  10. Heh…still not forgotten. Life (anda creaky Internet connection) have interfeared.

  11. It’s January! phil is on my ass about it. I blamed you.

  12. I should be blamed. I had 4/5 of written out on a notepad. Let me pull that out and finish it. I may revisit based on some newer thoughts.

  13. Did you find it amongst the old drafts you’ve been posting today?

  14. It was never typed in – it is in a notebook. Yeah, it is time for it to be finished and posted.

  15. […] 2008 May 22 by Cannoneer No. 4  Y’all don’t steal my title (unless you’re PurpleSlog). This may be what my Grand Unified Field Theory of Counterinsurgent Supportive Communications […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: