RE: [iwar] A question...

From: Riccardo Sibilia (
Date: 2001-04-10 04:35:14

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From: Riccardo Sibilia <>
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Date: Tue, 10 Apr 2001 13:35:14 +0200 (MEST)
Subject: RE: [iwar] A question...
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Jim, shouldn't we consider IO a nice way of saying IW to please some people on 
the hill?

*covert* is maybe the wrong word (that the reason why I asked for corrections). 
It is meant in the sense that by bombing that particular target (a microwave 
tower, for example) you do not want to implicitly disclose your true goal of 
influencing that particular decision maker (or perhaps you bomb him directly, in 
which case it does not matter). I agree with you about this. Mk 84 and JDAM can 
be very useful means of IW to distrupt or destroy enemy decision capabilities.

In fact you could perhaps explain me something: since the US JCS doctrine 
encompasses both offensive and defensive IO, and IO can be used both in times of 
peace or war (and everything in between), what are the peacetime applications of 
offensive IO? don't you think that anybody confronted by O-IO will consider it 
an act of war at a certain point?

Anyways... here the link to a paper I presented back in 1999 at the FiestaCrows 
conference in San Antonio and a slide from that same Paper:

enjoy :-)


>There is nothing covert about a 500 lb bomb. Physical destruction is as much
>a part of "IW" as perception management.
>Let me mix things further: Are we discussing IW or IO (Information
>Operations)? IW could arguably considered a subset of IO, where IO
>encompasses the whole conflict spectrum (peace, crisis, war, de-escalation,
>peace, ad infinitium). 
>-----Original Message-----
>From: Riccardo Sibilia []
>Sent: Tuesday, April 10, 2001 5:34 AM
>Subject: Re: [iwar] A question...
>Tony, I do agree with you 100%
>I came up recently with the following definition of IW (I know, we do not
>to start it all over again with definitions and so on, but we NEED to get
>from the actual technocratic view and say what IW is done for... one can say
>goes in hollyday to find some rest or to fly 800 miles, land at a sunny
>travel by bus some more an lay on the beach. Both are true, but only one 
>expresses the real reason he is doing that to himself ;-) )
>... so my proposal (that actually put some more light on IW operations
>Information Warfare is a *strategy*, that consist in coverly influencing the
>opponent's decicion cycles the way that favourizes our own goals and in 
>designing our own cycles so, that they are protected from such an influence.
>>From this definition (please excuse me if my english is not so perfect here,
>I've translated it from german... corrections are very much welcome!) one
>where the focus of the yesterday's operations is. It is true, that the limit
>from one operation type to the next is very thin.
>>> > public information management (works with true information that is used
>>> at the
>>> > right time, place, quality and quantity) or
>>>Is this "selective" information?  If so, it is a form of deception, isn't
>>> > disruption (where one tryies to reduce the opponents or public 
>>> attention to a
>>> > certain subject by "noise").
>>>Isn't disruption in this case a form of deception?
>>Well, of course it is.  And deception is generally intended to cause 
>>disruption ...
>>I both love, and hate, to quibble over the meaning of words, but it is a 
>>necessary component of any real discussion.
>>Murder could be described as the "permanent disruption of someone's 
>>I like the 5 operations described by Sibilia:
>>> > disruption;
>>> > deception;
>>> > destruction;
>>> > public information management and
>>> > operational security measures.
>>But the categories are not a nicely bounded as the terms might imply.  If 
>>you "disrupt" an adversary's ability to control a critical process, and as 
>>an "indirect" consequence, something degenerates into collapse, did you 
>>engage in "disruption" or "destruction".
>>Would it be true to say that "all conflict seeks to end conflict"?
>>Confusion among terms often occurs when some assign meaning to words based 
>>upon a supposed "intent" behind the action, others to the "immediate form" 
>>of the action, and yet others based upon the extended consequences of the 
>>action.  If we could be clear in which of these senses a word is defined or
>>intended, confusion would be reduced.
>Riccardo Sibilia                    
>Inst. fuer militaerische Sicherheitstechnik
>Auf der Mauer 2                               Tel. +41 1 252 6260
>8001 Zurich / Switzerland                     Fax. +41 1 252 1667
>Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to 
>Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to 

Riccardo Sibilia                    
Inst. fuer militaerische Sicherheitstechnik
Auf der Mauer 2                               Tel. +41 1 252 6260
8001 Zurich / Switzerland                     Fax. +41 1 252 1667

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