WHY WE NEED IO......

WHY WE NEED IO......

Postby Cryptonite » Sun Jan 08, 2017 8:05 pm

Well, with all the news buzz lately, it appears that while we once had the opportunity to leverage the Info Environment through our investments in IO, we dropped the ball by sending mixed messages and by not committing to the charge. Of course this is my humble opinion, and I'm sure many of you will disagree. But everything we do crosses the Information Environment including Cyber.

Why haven't we invested in already established entities such as JIOWC--?
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Re: WHY WE NEED IO......

Postby Sum1 » Sun Jan 08, 2017 10:13 pm

Cryptonite wrote:Well, with all the news buzz lately, it appears that while we once had the opportunity to leverage the Info Environment through our investments in IO, we dropped the ball by sending mixed messages and by not committing to the charge. Of course this is my humble opinion, and I'm sure many of you will disagree. But everything we do crosses the Information Environment including Cyber.

Why haven't we invested in already established entities such as JIOWC--?


*** Personal opinion originating from direct experience working with JIOWC in multiple capacities ***

The people who work at JIOWC are great, enthusiastic, and personable, but the support the organization provides is a joke. They want to be helpful, and have personally offered to help me with various planning initiatives. I would take the "free chicken" they'd offer me by sending them projects to work on behalf of the CCMD, and (if I got any response at all) I'd usually get a report someone wrote 5+ years ago that they just dusted off and emailed me without reading (I know they didn't read it because if they had they would have seen on page 2 that it wasn't in any way relevant to the project).

But it's not JIOWC's fault. The military as a whole struggles to integrate IO into planning, and when it's forced in (think exercises) commanders often appear to have unrealistic expectations of what it can accomplish. It's hard to explain the prep time and work that needs to happen in Phase 0 for IO to have appreciable effects. And there's another problem... assessing IO isn't easy, either.

I think the Navy, in particularly, is behind the power curve with IO. I've written about my experience with IO at the 4-star level, and the general mood from others here is one of our flags said "we don't do IO" so therefore we don't do it. I don't agree, but that's for another discussion. :)
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Re: WHY WE NEED IO......

Postby Cryptonite » Mon Jan 09, 2017 12:39 am

Sum1,

I agree, but my counterargument is that we have not "invested". I understand the Semantics of senior leadership exhaling that we don't do "IO" in a resource constrained environment and the requirements to support Cyber. However, I think most of us who have worked in any capacity of IO know that it depends on which side of the shower curtain you are standing.

My interaction and experience with JIOWC were totally different, but what I requested was centered on GPA(Group & Pop Analysis). I believe that they operate with the right framework in mind; however, they need more practitioners to balance the analysis for integration into plans...just my 1/2 a cent.

I get your position about prep time, BDA etc., but its 2017 and those were the same arguments we were having in 2017 when i was a IO Planner, and the same arguments surrounding Cyber today.


https://community.apan.org/wg/ioc/iofd-t/p/iofm
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Re: WHY WE NEED IO......

Postby yoshi » Mon Jan 09, 2017 3:52 am

Was wondering if/when someone was going to bring up IO in the context of the recent news. Knew also that if it was going to be found, it was only going to be found here. Very important to have this type of discussion, but not in the context of whether or not we do IO. The more important effort is for the military, the Navy, and our community to begin examining how we can better understand what is strategically occurring and, more importantly, how we should react to it. In this regard, 1810 community has been lacking. We've been working really hard, trying to view a landscape panorama through a SIGINT/EW/Cyber technical microscope. We have to be better with what is occurring around the world, at the #'d Fleets, the COCOMs, in the DOS/DOE, elsewhere (these folks are our customers). We have to strategically understand where, when, and how to involve our 3 core skill sets in areas outside of Maryland and IN PLANS OTHER THAN OUR OWN. Sounds a lot like IO, either with us doing it or with us supporting those who are doing it. Finally, if we are going to be in the supporting role (vice running it), we need to understand that the plans into which we need to incorporate our skill sets do not inherently have place holders for our stuff. We need to understand that our stuff has to leave the beltway area and find its way into those plans in a way that is able to dynamically adapt/respond to changes in the plans and changes in the target. At that point, we'd be able to fairly assess our value in the context of military operations. Often, we assess our effort's value in the context of what we are doing or can do rather than what we need to do for someone ELSE's plan to have success. We can't expect success if we continue to sequester ourselves in one place, continually scrambling to demonstrate value based on criteria we ourselves devise. The Navy and the rest of the military aren't interested in our self worth/self respect/self appraisal; they care about a bigger fight and what we bring to it. We must stop being our own customer. I don't want to be misunderstood here. We, as a community, are doing great SIGINT, EW, and cyber work. Our Sailors are amazing and have us excelling at a level far beyond that which could be expected. But, we are qualifying success based on what we can do/get/affect and that often does not connect with the "so what" in the grand scheme of things at the COCOM level. That connection should be routinely maintenanced in billets, priority, and emphasis, and it should be reinforced constantly at the higher community levels.

In any case, the Navy leadership needs a community dedicated to understanding the strategic landscape, operating/planning within it, and responding to it. We've been content to describe resource constraints and external pressures as barriers preventing our ability to do so. It's not resources which determine attention span, though. The truth is we pilot our own ship, thus the strategic posture we maintain is a result of our decisions, not some ethereal resource deficiency. Resource deficiency occurs when resources are constrained - just like everyone else's - based on what is/is not brought to the bigger fight. We aren't yet in that situation, although I sometimes wonder if the unmanned thing going from 2/6 to the 9 code doesn't hint at it.

We could benefit also from properly scoping our cyber effort. Certainly, cyber defense is critical; beyond that is the debate. What we need to understand about the world - the Russians, the Syrians, the Chinese, etc - isn't a cyber thing; it's much broader. In fact, the cyber window is a VERY small aperture through which understanding can arrive. As a service, and especially as a community, we continue to take actions (personnel and organizational) which do not appreciate or account for its limitations. We continue to focus on the small percent of the picture it provides while having dramatically insufficient regard for the remaining percent we MUST understand. And, what's more, we continue to push the community toward an increasingly narrow focus using our board precept, billet growth, general emphasis. When I look at what we focus on and the level of granularity to which we focus, if I had to pick a community best suited to do IO (other than our three core skill sets) by maintaining the strategic understanding and gearing the IWC's operational input to the Navy, I don't see how the Intel community wouldn't presently be a better choice. That makes me a little sad, because we should be a better natural fit, we say that's what we do, and we willingly decide not to.
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Re: WHY WE NEED IO......

Postby Sum1 » Mon Jan 09, 2017 12:28 pm

yoshi wrote:We, as a community, are doing great SIGINT, EW, and cyber work. Our Sailors are amazing and have us excelling at a level far beyond that which could be expected. But, we are qualifying success based on what we can do/get/affect and that often does not connect with the "so what" in the grand scheme of things at the COCOM level. That connection should be routinely maintained in billets, priority, and emphasis, and it should be reinforced constantly at the higher community levels.


I agree with a lot of what you said, but the quoted part is KEY. I keep seeing this, especially when I sit in on the CYBERCOM CUB or read the WARs being distributed across the enterprise. I think we do a very bad job drawing distinctions between legacy SIGINT/NSA-type work and the military work we should be focusing on. Defining "success" based solely on what we managed to do without accounting in any way for the effect it had is hollow and self-serving. I also think that's part of the reason why we have a hard time synchronizing with other military operations (another being the ever-present question of authorities). There should never be a "cyber" scheme of maneuver independent of the overall scheme of maneuver. They NEED to be one in the same. Just like we should make people snap a rubber band on their wrist every time they say "cyber" target. There are targets. That's it. The combatant commands should maintain, synchronize, and deconflict (how about all THOSE buzzwords) the various component targeting efforts and RTL/etc. So, again, my opinion, is cyber needs to ACT like a component supporting geographic combatant commanders by running their own targeting efforts and PUSHING those ETFs up to the CCMD for inclusion into the larger effort. My observation is we're trying to do this and making some progress, but it's slow going, cumbersome, and sometimes CYBERCOM just decides they aren't going to do it for a particular mission/operation. Wrong answer.

IO is supposedly the synchronization of the various information related capabilities affecting the information environment. Gone are the days where we can sit in our stovepipes of excellence and let someone else drive all the coordination for us. We have billets at CCMDs, JS, CYBERCOM, etc. that need to understand the bigger picture so that they can be that sync/coord entity. You don't build that expertise/experience by exposing someone to it for the first time as an O-5/O-6.
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Re: WHY WE NEED IO......

Postby COMEVIL » Mon Jan 09, 2017 5:44 pm

Cryptonite wrote:Well, with all the news buzz lately, it appears that while we once had the opportunity to leverage the Info Environment through our investments in IO, we dropped the ball by sending mixed messages and by not committing to the charge. Of course this is my humble opinion, and I'm sure many of you will disagree. But everything we do crosses the Information Environment including Cyber.

Why haven't we invested in already established entities such as JIOWC--?


Can you define WE and MIXED MESSAGES and the CHARGE. Honestly, I don't understand any of the context here.
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Re: WHY WE NEED IO......

Postby Cryptonite » Tue Jan 10, 2017 6:21 am

"Can you define WE and MIXED MESSAGES and the CHARGE. Honestly, I don't understand any of the context here."

We: CWO Community.

Mixed Messages: N"IO"C, #'d Fleet N39s, Joint IO Jobs.

Charge: Numerous Commands "MFTs" that still have IO as a core or supporting mission.
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Re: WHY WE NEED IO......

Postby COMEVIL » Tue Jan 10, 2017 1:40 pm

Cryptonite wrote:"Can you define WE and MIXED MESSAGES and the CHARGE. Honestly, I don't understand any of the context here."

We: CWO Community.

Mixed Messages: N"IO"C, #'d Fleet N39s, Joint IO Jobs.

Charge: Numerous Commands "MFTs" that still have IO as a core or supporting mission.


Who is the target and what is the desired endstate? Does the Navy specifically have a role? What do we uniquely contribute that other forces cannot?

IO campaigns are typically targeted against people. Naval Forces, beyond NSW and NECC, don't typically interact with the local population in the way that ground troops do. So what exactly would a Naval force contribute to IO beyond broadcasts and pamphlets?
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Re: WHY WE NEED IO......

Postby Sum1 » Tue Jan 10, 2017 5:41 pm

COMEVIL wrote:
Cryptonite wrote:"Can you define WE and MIXED MESSAGES and the CHARGE. Honestly, I don't understand any of the context here."

We: CWO Community.

Mixed Messages: N"IO"C, #'d Fleet N39s, Joint IO Jobs.

Charge: Numerous Commands "MFTs" that still have IO as a core or supporting mission.


Who is the target and what is the desired endstate? Does the Navy specifically have a role? What do we uniquely contribute that other forces cannot?

IO campaigns are typically targeted against people. Naval Forces, beyond NSW and NECC, don't typically interact with the local population in the way that ground troops do. So what exactly would a Naval force contribute to IO beyond broadcasts and pamphlets?


That question really needs to be asked while taking into account the phases of conflict and what your specific objectives are. Additionally, the question needs some kind of context because the implications at the tactical level are vastly different than the implications at the strategic or operational levels.

From a tactical level influencing individuals (KLE) or target audiences (MISO), the interaction with a population is important. What about virtual interactions through social media? Did we send a tactical message when we sent a couple Navy combatants to do counter-piracy in GOA? Why is a low altitude overpass sometimes in the ROE for the escalation of force? Would we do that if we assessed the target audience wouldn't see that "message" as credible? What about maritime capabilities leveraged to delivery other types of messaging? At the operational/strategic levels, what kind of message does our government send when they park a couple of CSGs off the coast of a foreign adversary? How is that action synchronized with SLEs between senior government officials of two or more nations? Does that synchronization amplify the intended message?

We can provide smart, strategic, critical thinkers who can help translate foreign policy into military strategy, which the services then use as guidance to do their jobs. At the very tip of the most pointy spear (or the deepest bowls of the most remotely operated warship) this stuff may seem inconsequential in the moment, but we (the U.S.) isn't in this for the short game. We NEED to be in that conversation because to ignore it means we continue operating in our stovepipe of excellence. If Information is really a warfighting domain and we consider it important in today's military, then we represent TWO elements of national power that absolutely must be leveraged in constructive ways.
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Re: WHY WE NEED IO......

Postby COMEVIL » Tue Jan 10, 2017 6:21 pm

Sum1 wrote:
COMEVIL wrote:
Cryptonite wrote:"Can you define WE and MIXED MESSAGES and the CHARGE. Honestly, I don't understand any of the context here."

We: CWO Community.

Mixed Messages: N"IO"C, #'d Fleet N39s, Joint IO Jobs.

Charge: Numerous Commands "MFTs" that still have IO as a core or supporting mission.


Who is the target and what is the desired endstate? Does the Navy specifically have a role? What do we uniquely contribute that other forces cannot?

IO campaigns are typically targeted against people. Naval Forces, beyond NSW and NECC, don't typically interact with the local population in the way that ground troops do. So what exactly would a Naval force contribute to IO beyond broadcasts and pamphlets?


That question really needs to be asked while taking into account the phases of conflict and what your specific objectives are. Additionally, the question needs some kind of context because the implications at the tactical level are vastly different than the implications at the strategic or operational levels.

From a tactical level influencing individuals (KLE) or target audiences (MISO), the interaction with a population is important. What about virtual interactions through social media? Did we send a tactical message when we sent a couple Navy combatants to do counter-piracy in GOA? Why is a low altitude overpass sometimes in the ROE for the escalation of force? Would we do that if we assessed the target audience wouldn't see that "message" as credible? What about maritime capabilities leveraged to delivery other types of messaging? At the operational/strategic levels, what kind of message does our government send when they park a couple of CSGs off the coast of a foreign adversary? How is that action synchronized with SLEs between senior government officials of two or more nations? Does that synchronization amplify the intended message?

We can provide smart, strategic, critical thinkers who can help translate foreign policy into military strategy, which the services then use as guidance to do their jobs. At the very tip of the most pointy spear (or the deepest bowls of the most remotely operated warship) this stuff may seem inconsequential in the moment, but we (the U.S.) isn't in this for the short game. We NEED to be in that conversation because to ignore it means we continue operating in our stovepipe of excellence. If Information is really a warfighting domain and we consider it important in today's military, then we represent TWO elements of national power that absolutely must be leveraged in constructive ways.


All credible, important work. By why WE, as in the CWO community? Other than a misstep labeling us IW for a few years, we are plenty engaged in our current mission set -- SIGINT, Cyber, EW. And we can fill all of those jobs as it is. So why WE? Without additionally manpower, we shouldn't even consider it. Pretty certain, in fact, we are divesting for this very reason.
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