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Special Warfare

By doing so. It is authoritative but requires judgment in application. Commander. interagency and multinational environment. Department of Defense Dictionary of Military and Associated Terms 1 I applaud the JFK Special Warfare Center’s continued efforts to develop and define ARSOF doctrine. the greater imperative in the study of doctrine is for the force to recognize when and where to deviate from it to address a specific operational necessity. Doctrine can also be restrictive if applied too strictly. Our operators must appreciate that there is no template for every situation they will encounter on the battlefield. and the efforts of the Special Warfare Center’s Directorate of Doctrine and Training are essential to providing the linkage from Army SOF doctrine to joint special-operations and service doctrine. we sustain the intellectual and tactical agility that is a hallmark of SOF operations.” — JP 1-02. Olson. While clarifying many of the often confused definitions. Therefore. The United States Special Operations Command has a legislated responsibility to develop doctrine relating to special-operations activities.BY Jeffrey hasler Doctrine is the “fundamental principles by which the military forces or elements thereof guide their actions in support of national objectives. doctrine is a valuable tool and our force needs to understand the terms and the implications of our words — especially in today’s joint. Undoubtedly. — Admiral Eric T. USSOCOM January-February 2011 13 . this article also provides an opportunity to remind our joint force about the application of doctrine during periods of prolonged conflict.

14 Special Warfare Official vs Service Specific or Multinational & Pending Inclusion The highest joint authority for an official doctrinal term is the highest joint publication with proponent authority of the subject. This matters above everything. with varying claims to authority and from every conceivable perspective. That being the case. However. while its description can evolve as context and circumstances change. to describe “is to give an account of. Today. ARSOF leaders at all levels have a duty to strengthen the organizational enterprise by the correct use of terminology. Official vs Unofficial Concepts & Theories Everyone has the individual power to define strictly personal issues — such as personal values or religious meaning — for himself. For example. powers and duties. and no matter the enthusiasm of any individual — are not official doctrine until they go through the vetting process of numerous staffs. editorials and blogs. Functional Areas and Missions8 Another example of terminology confusion results from the improper use of terms that define what our ARSOF organizations do. to represent pictorially. regardless of media attention and repetition. The department’s components perform tasks and activities that supply these functionallyorganized capabilities. During the transition. there is also a value in organizations using terms correctly. or support for. the volume of information and the number of sources has exploded. properly command-approved definitions may take months or years to appear in JP 1-02. For example. Thus. responsibilities. A description is not a definition. a definition focuses on what something is. Joint Operations.11 . The use of trendy — but unapproved — jargon pretending to represent the “progress” of insight or the institutional superiority of the claimant is better left in the unofficial blogosphere. It is a truism that a proper and professional discussion presupposes a prior common definition of terms.4 By contrast. a revised definition for unconventional warfare was approved by the commander of the United States Special Operations Command. two distinct definitions may cause some confusion. morals and art will deteriorate. the habit of defending organizational prerogatives and the personal ambitions of some hoping to market “the next new thing” have all contributed to a glut of conceptual terms. Activities. the word ‘river’ denotes a [linear] moving body of water [but] may connote such things as the relentlessness of time [or] the changing nature of life. QRM JAN09. the authoritative doctrinal definition for “stability operations” is found in JP 3-0. The power to define is the power to design a vision of organizational purpose. but this should be temporary. Hence there must be no arbitrariness in what is said. the joint version takes precedence. is being vetted for inclusion in JP 1-02. to convey an idea or impression of. A definition should be enduring and slow to change. they must not mistake one for the other. QRM JAN09. a much smaller volume of information from a few relatively respected sources aided unity of understanding. For enormous organizations such as the Department of Defense. imaginative professional discussion of terms is healthy and should be encouraged in the professional and academic schoolhouses. Sometimes. repetition of virtuous “lessons” in their correct form is a public good. In earlier generations. if this remains undone. JP 1-02 31JUL10. including responsibilities of the Armed Forces as amended.”5 Whereas. if what is said is not what is meant. However. such as establishing specific standards of manufacturing quality at a business. in May 2009 and is currently the approved definition within the command. however. if justice goes astray. nor ought reporters to carelessly relay the melodious or fashionable for the correct. Mission (Areas). Denote vs Connote This duality of denote/connote is similar to that of define/describe.”6 Applied to doctrine. This definition. Roles are the broad and enduring purposes for which the services and USSOCOM were established by law. Roles. the authority to approve doctrinal definitions is a command prerogative.Story title Defining War “If language is not correct. Regardless of whether leaders are using written or spoken discourse. Such processes provide an opportunity to examine the validity of “new” concepts and eliminate the half-baked and counterproductive.”3 — Confucius. The confusion resulting from such a surfeit of (often questionable) terms is then increased further by vague and misleading descriptions compounded by media amplification. Definition vs Description To define is “to state the precise meaning. Approved joint definitions are then routinely compiled in JP 1-02. As Aristotle told us. The term “function” includes purpose. then what must be done remains undone.”7 Official definitions are specific. Bold. The honorable pursuit of warfighting insights. unofficial concepts and theories — no matter how trendy. when such definitions conflict. “Denote means ‘to signify directly or literally’ and describes the relation between the word and the thing it conventionally names. Sometimes there are other approved definitions — such as service specific or multinational — but they apply only within those constituencies and are therefore limited. or USSOCOM.9 Functions are the appropriate or assigned duties. office or organization as defined in the National Security Act of 1947. ARSOF leaders should sustain that power by staying on an azimuth of doctrinal clarity. accuracy and repetition. By contrast. the people will stand about in helpless confusion. Connote means ‘to signify indirectly. Competencies. Specific functions of the services and USSOCOM are captured in Department of Defense Directives. Tasks. missions or tasks of an individual. this approval decision is the culmination of a lengthy process representing copious amounts of staff work and intellectual effort. then what is said is not what is meant.10 Core Competencies are groupings of functionally-organized capabilities associated with the performance of. Some have the authority to define for organizations beyond the scope of the individual. Rectification of Names The modern world is awash in information. carelessly vague descriptions masquerading as “definitions” erode unity of understanding. suggest or imply’ and describes the relation between the word and the images or associations it evokes. while its description provides context and explains what it does within that context. The information available on any topic comes in varying degrees of content quality. they are not poetry. a Department of Defense core mission area. Functions. or DoD.

special operations. maintain. review. and (FM 3-05. IW is also not synonymous with any of liar to. prepare. component has some degree of and Military Contribution to Cooperative Security (2009 QRM) organization. manning. Although host of key related activities. foreign ing and equipment to execute internal defense. Command and Control. Irregular Warfare. security force assistance. a duty assigned to UW Populace and resources control CT an individual or unit. Irregular warfare favors indirect and asymmetric approaches. (DoDD 5100. intelligence and than 20 years. USSOCOM does not assert exclusivity or ownership over these areas. Deterrence Operations. organization capabilities. techniques or procedures tasks. assign. Major Combat Secondary Core Task A Operations.) In common usage. that UW Tasks: CAO clearly indicates the action to be FID MISO In all cases. unconventional warfare. manned. COIN MISO (PO) forces authorities and the civil populace. fense Strategy and National Military Strategy. gives USSOCOM responsibility for certain activities. and counterinsurgency operations. Activities are organizational units for performing specific funcor COIN. SFA IO commander’s relationship with civil (JP 3-0) (2. governThere are five principal activities or operations that are undertaken ment lead for achieving end states defined in national strategy documents. 06OCT10 DRAFT) stability operations. trainUSSOCOM 11 Core Activities: Direct action. 1 July 2002. counterproliferation of weapons of mass destruction. (FM 3-05. or particularly characteristic of. Battlespace Awareness.14 those activities.1 Listed functions are Task List. Civil Affairs operations. the task. psychological operations (now MISO). and stability operations. or FID. or UW. Support Core Task A (Title 10 USC Sec 167. Tasks are based upon doctrine. Primary Core Task A exercise. prescribe.counterintelligence operations in which the joint force may engage to counter irregular threats. and Reconstruction Operations. and ber 2009. etc. especially when applied to lower DA play a supporting role in 9 tasks: Core Tasks include: SR military units. security force assistance. QRM JAN0912 address irregular threats: counterterrorism.1. 01AUG02) component is fully organized. a task. SOCOM D 10-1cc 15 DecemCivil Affairs operations. foreign internal defense. competencies. (JP FID (PRC) CP 3-0) JP 1-02 15 December 2001. Force Support. Logistics. DoD Six Core Mission Areas: Homeland Defense and Civil Support. direct action. assess. information operations. activities. In addition to these five activities. trained and equipped Building Partnerships. the activities do reflect tasks or skills pecu. Each of the department’s core mission areas is underpinned by a in sequence.IW is defined in JP 1 as a violent struggle among state and nonCore Mission Areas are broad Department of Defense military state actors for legitimacy and influence over the relevant populaactivities required to achieve strategic objectives of the National Detions. preponderance of U. or CT. SF perform 9 Principal Tasks: MISO (PO) perform 2 Principal CA perform 1 Principal Task: together with the purpose. tactics.16 information operations [secondary core activity]. (2010 QDR) CJCSM3400. CA support the taken and the reason therefore. Psychological Operations. 06OCT10 DRAFT) Missions (1. unconventional warfare. IW is not synonymous with any tions. special reconnaissance. in parallel or in blended form in a coherent campaign to joint operating concept that visualizes future operations. U. sustain and employ the military capabilities needed to generated by mission analysis. and are DoD Role: The role of the Department of Defense is to field. 06OCT10 DRAFT) (FM 3-05. provides the though it may employ the full range of military and other capabilities. information operations. counter-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction [secondary core activity]. or is the U. Tasks A discrete event or action that enables a mission or function to be accomplished by individuals or organizations.S. A core mission area is a mission for which the department is uniquely responsible. civilmost of these activities have been assigned to USSOCOM for more military operations and support to law-enforcement. counterterrorism. January-February 2011 15 . mission areas. influence and will. special reconnaissance. functions. protect the United States and its allies and to advance our interests. of these activities. foreign internal defense. Protection. Transition. 06OCT10 DRAFT) (FM 3-05.) The task. counterinsurgency. Military Support to Stabilization Security. However. DoD Nine Core Competencies: Force Application.S. CAO involve ARSOF operations: Civil information management (CIM) CP irregular warfare. military information support operations.S. functional areas and missions or an organization’s standard operating procedure. or IW. in order to erode an adversary’s power.17 SFA Foreign humanitarian assistance IO Finally. 01FEB10 ) component supports within its ARSOF 11 Core Activities: Unconventional warfare. it is important to have COIN (FHA) DA a clear understanding of two Nation assistance (NA) SR concepts that are not ARSOF Support to civil administration CT core activities but that frequently (SCA). and Corporate Management and Support (2009 QRM) to execute the task.15 numerous and generally begin with active verbs such as: employ (forces).04c Universal Joint DoD Functions: (and the functions of its major components) are listed in DoDD 5100. there are a Code. advise. organize. government capabilities. counterterrorism. The term can also refer to the function or duties themselves. including strategic communications. Net Centric. UScounterinsurgency.13 Core Activities of Special Operations Section 167 of Title 10. Roles.

S. (JP 3-05. JUL10. neither subsumes the other. Core activity of ARSOF. nongovernmental organizations. Not synonymous with unconventional warfare. APR06). (JP 3-13. Although not doctrine. MAR09. FM 3-05. (DoDD 3000. MAR10. allies and partners. FID. Core activity of ARSOF. JAN09). to influence. Insurgency can also refer to the group itself. SEP06. Core activity of ARSOF. (JP 3-05.and reserve-component forces of the military services designated by the secretary of defense and specifically organized. Core activity of ARSOF. Unconventional Warfare (UW) Activities conducted to enable a resistance movement or insurgency to coerce.137. predominantly indigenous forces. Core activity of ARSOF. There is no joint doctrine for UW. disrupt or overthrow a government or occupying power by operating through or with an underground. DEC10. (JP 3-22. TC 18-06 in development in 2011). Formerly known as psychological operations. ATTP 3-18. (C) ATTP 3-05. NOV09). operational. FM 3-57 in development 2011). but not all (joint) SOF are (Army) SF. FM 3-53 in development 2011). ATTP 3-18. Military Information Support Operations (MISO) As an activity: Supports all of the other core activities by increasing the psychological effects inherent in their application. Irregular warfare favors indirect and asymmetric approaches. Key related activity of IW. (2) Those forces other than designated special operations forces. FM 3-05. denied or politically sensitive environments and which employ specialized military capabilities to seize. Security Force Assistance (SFA) The Department of Defense activities that contribute to unified action by the U. FM 3-05. or alliances of states. Counterproliferation (CP) of Weapons of Mass Destruction Actions taken to defeat the threat and/or use of weapons of mass destruction against the United States. CT and Stability Operations. FEB06. TC 31-73. Army forces organized. Stability Operations An overarching term encompassing various military missions. military deception and operations security.04. 16 Special Warfare . (JP 3-26. psychological operations. (JP 3-57.30. As a capability: Conducted across the strategic.1. APR07). (JP 3-22. Counterinsurgency (COIN) Comprehensive civilian and military efforts taken to defeat an insurgency and to address any core grievances. emergency infrastructure reconstruction and humanitarian relief. capture. auxiliary and guerrilla force in a denied area. Civil Affairs Operations (CAO) Those military operations conducted by civil affairs forces that: (1) enhance the relationship between military forces and civil authorities in localities where military forces are present. DEC06 is the primary conceptual reference). JAN10. IW comprises five principle activities: UW. insurgency. Direct Action (DA) Short-duration strikes and other small-scale offensive actions conducted as a special operation in hostile. Core activity and organizing principle for SF. and tactical levels of conflict as part of interagency activities to achieve U. SF and SOF are not synonymous: All (Army) SF are SOF. Special Operations Forces (SOF) Those active. in concert with specified supporting and related capabilities. provide essential governmental services.S. indigenous populations and institutions. Core activty of IW. Not synonymous with FID or COIN. Although not doctrine. Direct action differs from conventional offensive actions in the level of physical and political risk.40. denied or politically sensitive environments to collect or verify information of strategic or operational significance. though it may employ the full range of military and other capabilities in order to erode an adversary’s power. exploit. DEC03). disrupt. (JP 3-24. (JP 3-13. JUL08. computer network operations. COIN. Secondary core activity of ARSOF.07. (JP 3-05. IW JOC. JUL08. (JP 3-05. (JP 3-05. tasks and activities conducted outside the United States in coordination with other instruments of national power to maintain or re-establish a safe and secure environment. APR05. Core activity of ARSOF. intended to coerce or to intimidate governments or societies in the pursuit of goals that are generally political. APR07). v2.132. government to support the development of the capacity and capability of foreign security forces and their supporting institutions. Terrorism The calculated use of unlawful violence or the threat of unlawful violence to inculcate fear. influence and will.1. Conventional Forces (CF) (1) Those forces capable of conducting operations using non-nuclear weapons. national objectives. and the private sector. Counterterroism (CT) Actions taken directly against terrorist networks and indirectly to influence and render global environments inhospitable to terrorist networks. Core activty of IW.S.2.203 (U). Guerrilla Warfare (GW) Military and paramilitary operations conducted in enemy-held or hostile territory by irregular. (JP 3-05. DEC08). our forces. Subset of FID. NOV10). (JP 3-07. JUL10. OCT09. (JP 3-40. lawlessness. MAY10 is the primary conceptual reference). DEC03. TC 18-02 in development 2011). NOV09). (JP 3-0. Core activity of ARSOF. DEC03). Special Forces (SF) U. JUN09. with an emphasis on unconventional-warfare capabilities.Quick Reference guide of terms: Defining war BY Jeffrey hasler official Terms (Use in Written and Spoken Discourse) Irregular Warfare (IW) A violent struggle among state and nonstate actors for legitimacy and influence over the relevant populations. Not synonymous with those activities. or seize or retain territory in order to force a change in an adversary’s government or policies. v2. Traditional Warfare A form of warfare between the regulated militaries of states. (JP 3-24. Core activity of IW. trained and equipped to conduct special operations. Information Operations (IO) Integrated employment of the core capabilities of electronic warfare. Special Reconnaissance (SR) Reconnaissance and surveillance actions conducted as a special operation in hostile. Core activity of ARSOF. SFA and FID overlap. JUN08). Secondary core activity of ARSOF. SSTRO JOC. FM 3-05. and (3) involve application of functional specialty skills that normally are the responsibility of civil government to enhance the conduct of civil-military operations. corrupt or usurp adversarial human and automated decision-making while protecting our own. employing military capabilities not normally found in conventional forces. (TC18-01. These actions provide an additive capability for commanders and supplement other conventional reconnaissance and surveillance actions. Core activity of IW. (JP 1. trained and equipped to conduct and support special operations.2. OCT09). DEC03. Both a core activity and a capability of ARSOF. operational techniques and the degree of discriminate and precise use of force to achieve specific objectives. TC 18-05 in development 2011). Insurgency The organized use of subversion and violence by a group or movement that seeks to overthrow or force change of a governing authority. (2) require coordination with other interagency organizations. in which the objective is to defeat an adversary’s armed forces. religious or ideological. recover or damage designated targets.) Foreign Internal Defense (FID) Participation by civilian and military agencies of a government in any of the action programs taken by another government or other designated organization to free and protect its society from subversion. destroy an adversary’s war-making capacity. terrorism or other threats to its security. intergovernmental organizations.01 in development 2011. destroy.

less-relevant and fading convention of warfare. The original branch argues that American policy should not be constrained by the need for “heroic-crusade” motivations to intervene in small-scale stability operations. Knowing this is said to have great explanatory value. are adaptive to their operating environments and have decentralized leadership adept at achieving efficiencies vs. A different 7GW school is rooted in what might be characterized as reductio ad absurdum. An entirely different 6GW theory — associated largely with Russian theorists — is based entirely on technological progress. The second branch is an effete academic argument that asserts that Western civilization has evolved beyond heroic rationales — i. Be advised that a so-called Asymmetric Warfare Group exists to combat asymmetric threats. but not synonymous with. battlefield victory and notions of black or white no longer apply. A statement of the obvious. One continuation of this school claims 6GW is 5GW with an increased emphasis on the vulnerabilities of human biology and psychology. Global Way of War Held up by advocates as a desired evolution from the perceived limitations of a traditional “Western way of war. Depictions of opponents’ organizations resemble business organization models that are deliberately non-hiearchical. Use the officially defined term “conventional forces” instead.” This so-called “XGW” dropped the 4GW basis in modernism and replaced it with a spectrum of power dispersion. obviating the need for large-casualty invasions and occupations. where the source and destination of all conflict is rooted in the individual consciousness. Conventional Warfare There is no such doctrinal term.” “asymmetric approaches” or “asymmetric TTPs” can be useful descriptors in characterizing any given set of war phenomena. Netwar A concept focused on the identification of social networks used by irregular-threat opponents. including all warfare. OODA A theory that whoever is able to observe. an assailable theory of generational evolution and an arbitrary nation-state start point that controls out most of human experience. or “generation. Fourth Generation Warfare (4GW) (and derivative/similar concepts) Advocates of 4GW maintain that the world is in a new era.” Nonconventional Warfare A vague. All of the time devoted to this intellectual ferment would probably be better spent contemplating Sun Tzu. A confluence of technology. and the quest for asymmetric advantages against them. There are even at least two schools of “7GW.” of warfare. economics and information has produced unprecedented empowerment relative to scale. the second by firepower and the third by maneuver. the more broadly defined concept of “holistic warfare. there is no new kind of warfare called hybrid warfare. whereby the sixth generation will highlight exploitation of advanced technology. unless. and tellingly. into a competitive warfighting advantage. perhaps. Information Warfare A concept referring to the exploitation of information management to achieve comparative advantages over an opponent. enabled in part by information technology. for “fortune and glory” — for conducting warfare. UW. JP 1-02 directs that the term not be used. Not one of these ideas is approved for doctrine. have been inherent in war since the dawn of man. decide and act faster has a warfighting advantage. Avoid use of this term. As if this weren’t enough. ahistorical and contrived theory based on an assailable model of generational definition. they will seek to exploit enemy weaknesses in ways the enemy does not expect and which are difficult to protect against. Similar to.” 2GW becomes “counterforce. and this requires an imaginative fusion of any and all human disciplines. COIN and related topics. Network-centric warfare (NCW) A theory of organization and information management that seeks to translate an information advantage. there are advocates for various so-called “6GW” theories. orient.” January-February 2011 17 . However.. 4GW enthusiasts have multiplied. Matrix Warfare Describes an environment in which war and peace. used together under unified direction. generic concept frequently used to connote using any and all ways and means available to prosecute warfare. URW refers to a Chinese Peoples’ Liberation Army monograph advocating the use of any and all means to attack or subvert the United States specifically. Partisan Warfare The use of irregular troops raised to resist foreign occupation of an area.” Holistic Warfare A broad. It is influential non-doctrine. Asymmetries between opponents. It is not synonymous with unconventional warfare. 4GW is a pretentious. Unfortunately and counterproductively. this term is sometimes abbreviated “UW. while explicitly recognizing no rules that apply to an ascendant power. A common saying for enthusiasts is: “It takes a network to beat a network.e. This school asserts that he who thinks faster and better will win. Like the asymmetries in so-called asymmetric warfare. terms such as “asymmetric threats. It “discovers” insights already known. 4GW proponents claim that the new generation is characterized by the use of all instruments of power — not only the military — to defeat the will of enemy decision-makers.” which is counterproductive because of avoidable confusion with the proper doctrinal abbreviation for unconventional warfare. Not synonymous with the doctrinal term “information operations. Nevertheless. It is a relatively recent update of Chinese tradition. more cumbersome competitors. ways and means. However. and in which success or failure will be determined in a collection of gray-area results. hybrids are inherent in everything.” A distinction is now made by some between G standing for generation and G standing for “gradient. General Purpose Forces There is no such doctrinal term. The officially defined “traditional warfare” can be used instead.” mirror-image force and procedures will avoid using them.Reproduction authorized and encouraged nondoctrinal/unofficial Terms and theories (Avoid Use in Official Written and spoken Discourse) Asymmetric Warfare (AW) Opponents who cannot prevail against an enemy by using “symmetrical. or Eastern-style monism. the plain English usage of terms such as “hybrid threats” or “hybrid approaches” does provide useful descriptors.” Legacy Warfare A vague term sometimes used loosely to connote a previous. It doesn’t. with a very specific international context and usage. Conceptually redundent with IW and other contemporary theories. Post-Heroic Warfare This is one school of thought with two branches. one is locked into a priori conceptual strait jackets on the limited combination of ends. in most cases. which has a specific meaning. Specific to World War II or before. Friendly units would be networked together to achieve an OODA loop advantage. Hybrid Warfare The common thread among various theorists is the truism that some combination of two or more dissimilar elements produces a hybrid. It emphasizes leveraging emerging technologies and psychological operations. particulary in IW.” and 5GW becomes “perception manipulation.” 3GW remains manuever. 4GW becomes “counterperception.” One school is predicated on achieving the superlative application of the Boydian OODA loop. Unrestricted Warfare (URW) Unfortunately. The gradients are then fundamentally understood as: 0GW becomes “survival. these phrases are used in senior policy and command documents. and the 4GW model has been appended with more useless “new-found revelations. provide a range of options to a clever commander. Not synonymous with NCW. in a (theoretically) coordinated manner. This is not a new kind of warfare. simple and plain-English negation of “conventional warfare” that is used in academic discussions. Whole-of-Government Approach (as it applies to warfare) Connotes the use of all instruments of government power together. The first generation was characterized by massed manpower.” 1GW becomes “force projection. Compound Warfare (CW) Varying mixes of conventional regular forces and irregular forces. Rather.” whereby the context of observation is changed so that the foe is manipulated into reacting on false assumptions.

or USASOC. The president. police. with or by indigenous or surrogate forces who are organized. from the ministerial level down to units of those forces. The effective application of military forces can create the conditions for the other instruments of national power to exert their influence. ARSOF’s primary role in FID is to assess. techniques and procedures manual. or a joint-force commander may task an ARSOF element to perform missions for which it is the best suited among available forces or perhaps the only force available. First. potentially including the conduct of all other ARSOF core activities. ARSOF are organized. terrorism and other threats to its security. trained. intelligence activities and unconventional assisted recovery. SFA is a core activity for ARSOF. which is currently in revision. Special Forces Unconventional Warfare. the Irregular Warfare Joint Operating Concept. The Army’s new FID manual is scheduled for publication in September 2011 as ATTP 3-05. guerrilla warfare. forces peculiar to specific nations. and when ATTP 3-18. government effort based in law and is not a subordinate activity to COIN. CAO is the ARSOF core activity most essential to stability operations. version 2. nondoctrinal concept such as “conventional warfare. The conflict is waged not for military supremacy but for political power. There are three categories of support in FID: indirect support. delete or radically alter the nature of an ARSOF mission. or HN. lawlessness. SFA is DoD’s contribution to unified action to develop the capacity and capability of foreign security forces. Any ARSOF core activity could be employed in support of stability operations. Army Special Operations Command. Foreign Internal Defense. United States Code (10 USC 167).” The current. ARSOF missions are normally joint or interagency in nature. FSF include but are not limited to the military. advise and assist HN military and paramilitary forces with tasks that require the unique capabilities of ARSOF.01 Special Forces Unconventional Warfare. JP 3-22. tribes or ethnic groups. tasks and activities conducted outside the United States in coordination with other instruments of national power to maintain or re-establish a safe and secure environment. coast guard and customs officials. Mission priorities vary from one theater of operations to another. missions and functions as directed by Congress in Section 164. Stability operations are typically lengthy endeavors conducted within an environment of political ambiguity. conduct and support special operations throughout the range of military operations. but is not limited to. ARSOF may be employed in any of the three categories.40. Although it is not approved as joint doctrine. states. The current authoritative reference on ARSOF’s role is FM 3-05. Military power can contribute to the resolution of this form of warfare. and the governmental ministries and departments responsible . Special Operations. the secretary of defense. longstanding joint UW definition found in JP 1-02 is “a broad spectrum of military and paramilitary operations. prison. FID is a core activity for ARSOF and a core IW activity.18 From this definition. ARSOF plan. subversion.S. program of internal defense and development. dated 17 May 2010. The goal is to enable these HN forces to maintain internal stability. Title 10. equipped. As a result. border police. but it is not decisive.0. normally of long duration. SFA and FID overlap without being subsets of each other. integrating the planning efforts of all the agencies and organizations involved in a stability operation is essential to long-term peace and stability. emergency infrastructure reconstruction and humanitarian relief. which will be available electronically from the Reimer Training and Doctrine Digital Library in 2011. FID is not restricted to times of conflict.22. sabotage. JP 3-22 defines SFA as the Department of Defense activities that contribute to unified action by the U. Second. FID is an umbrella concept that covers a broad range of activities. defines FID as participation by civilian and military agencies of a government in any of the action programs taken by another government or designated organization to free and protect its society from subversion. and to address the causes of instability. UW is the core [activity] and organizing principle for Army Special Forces. Thus. infrastructure-protection forces. There is no joint doctrine for UW. train. ARSOF can conduct these missions unilaterally.S. as part of a coalition force or with indigenous assets. FID is a whole-of-U. Stability Operations is defined in JP 3-0 as an overarching term encompassing various military missions. military forces establish conditions that enable the efforts of the other instruments of national and international power.” The USSOCOM version is being proposed as the replacement term for inclusion in JP 1-02 through JP 3-05. the potentially slow development process of government reconstruction and stabilization policy may frustrate flexible military plans that adapt to the lethal dynamics of combat operations. to counter subversion and violence in their country. Through a comprehensive approach to stability operations. provide essential governmental services.137. supported and directed in varying degrees by an external source. predominantly conducted through.01 is complete. Those efforts build a foundation for transitioning to civilian control by providing the requisite security and control to stabilize an operational area. The current UW product is TC 18-01. with allied forces. is the reference most directly focused on IW. it is clear that UW is not the opposite of some loosely understood.Defining War IW differs from conventional operations dramatically in two aspects. TC 18-01 will fill the doctrinal void for UW while the new Army UW tactics. it is warfare among and within the people. Its primary intent is to help the legitimate governing body address internal threats and their underlying causes through a host-nation. Civil Affairs. IW differs from conventional warfare by its emphasis on the indirect approach. ATTP 3-18. it will be the authoritative UW reference. trained and equipped specifically to accomplish the core activities. Title 10. paramilitary forces. It includes. However. correctional and penal services. By order of the commander of the U. is under development using the updated Army doctrine hierarchy of ATTP publications. IW is addressed in JP 3-0 as a strategic context and in FM 3-0 as an operational theme.S. ARSOF missions are dynamic because they are directly affected by politico-military considerations. or FSF. and the most closely-focused reference is FM 3-05. disrupt or overthrow a government or occupy- 18 Special Warfare ing power by operating through or with an underground. insurgency. UW is a core activity for ARSOF and a core IW activity. government to support the development of the capacity and capability of foreign security forces and their supporting institutions. A change in national-security strategy or policy may add. ARSOF Core Activities ARSOF possess unique capabilities to support USSOCOM’s roles. auxiliary and guerrilla force in a denied area. United States Code (10 USC 164) and Section 167. Like UW. Army Special Operations Forces Foreign Internal Defense. The USSOCOM definition of UW was approved in May 2009 — Activities conducted to enable a resistance movement or insurgency to coerce. Foreign Internal Defense. However. direct support not involving combat and combat operations.

that ARSOF will become dedicated reconnaissance assets for convenBoth aspects of the COIN mission are of equal importance and must tional forces.Army’s role is FM 3-24. conduct standbatant commanders. However. Forces Advisor Guide. This provides an environment in which the HN government that may not be otherwise attainable. Special Forces Counterinsurgency.S. military information support. area assessment and postARSOF committed to COIN have a dual mission.1. in hostile. capabilities not normally found in conventional forces. Security Force Assistance. and region-specific knowledge. capture. prepares FSF to defend against external threats and to perform as part DA is a core activity for ARSOF. denied or politically sensitive environments to collect or verify for SFA is FM 3-07. exploit. intelligence. USSOCOM Direct Action (DA) off attacks by fire from air. Kennedy Civil Affairs Operations (CAO) limited in scope and duration. denied or port the overall COIN program by conducting operations. and in coordination with close-quarters battle).S. and it has the responsibility to lead tary capabilities to seize. TC 31-73 will be reviewed. TC 31-73. Although pertinent to most ARSOF activities. intelligence and tactical may create an additional and unique capability to achieve objectives support. Direct action differs from conventional offensive SFA capability across DoD.-controlled “eyes on target. DA operations are normally cess. Joint Forces Security Force Assistance (SFA) ambush or assault tactics (including Command. will highlight SF participation in COIN. Counterinsurgency. TC 18-05. FID and SFA are similar at the tactical Operations. The authoritative reference on the January-February 2011 19 . conduct anti-ship operations. (C) Special Forces Direct Action Operations (U). they must strike reconnaissance. ARSOF may employ raid. precise use of force to achieve speand identification of critical indiUnconventional Warfare (UW) cific objectives. operational techniques individuals and units. The U. provide terminal joint-sourcing solutions that recomSpecial Reconnaissance (SR) guidance for precision-guided munimend the most appropriate forces tions. vidual skills.03. joint capabiliARSOF CORE ACTIVITIES and the degree of discriminate and ties. but Special Warfare Center and School’s Counterproliferation (CP) of Weapons of Mass they may provide specific. denied or USSOCOM is the designated joint proponent and will lead developpolitically sensitive environments and which employ specialized miliment of joint doctrine for SFA. any core grievances. coordination and integration of the designated targets.S. The authoritative Army reference hostile. When published in midfor FSF. training and experience. terrain-masking or hostile countermeasures. denied area. Techniques developing an FSF’s internal capacity and capability. ARSOF supU. biological. SFA also and Procedures. However. Second. defines COIN as comprehensive civilprovide an additive capability for commanders and supplement other ian and military efforts taken to defeat an insurgency and to address conventional reconnaissance and surveillance actions. both SFA and FID focus on 2011. These actions Counterinsurgency Operations. in collaboration with Foreign Internal Defense (FID) erations. Special DA is ATTP 3-18. ARSOF are particularly valuable in COIN characteristics of a particular area. defines DA as short-duration strikes and other small-scale level where advisory skills are applicable to both. In the conduct of these opAdditionally. At operational and strategic levels. ARSOF may also employ advanced reconnaissance and be conducted at the same time. MISO. It may complement other collection methods assist the HN forces to defeat or neutralize the insurgent militarily. emplace mines the services and geographic comCounterinsurgency (COIN) and other munitions. training. JP 3-24. JP 3-05 defines SR as reconnaisto SF’s conduct of SFA. ground or is tasked with developing global maritime platforms. recover or damage the collaborative development. The authoritative reference on SF’s role in SFA. updated and redessance and surveillance actions conducted as a special operation in ignated TC 18-02 sometime in 2011. constrained by weather. SR may also include assessment of because of their specialized capabilities in CAO. destroy.” when authorized. such as politically sensitive territory. First. JP 3-05. validated SFA requirements referred Military Information Support Operations (MISO) or recover or capture personnel or to the global force management promaterial. ARSOF conduct DA opArms Center — the Army’s designaterations independently or as part of ed proponent for SFA — in developlarger conventional or unconventionment of Army service doctrine for al operations or campaigns. well-deDirectorate of Training and Doctrine Destruction (Secondary) fined and often time-sensitive results collaborates with the Army Training of strategic and operationally critical and Doctrine Command’s Combined Information Operations (IO) (Secondary) significance. or once-contested or insurgent-controlled areas. Army John F. the Joint Staff and U. residual nuclear or environmental hazards in a language skills. employing military COIN is a core activity for ARSOF and a core IW activity. conduct independent sabo(conventional forces and/or SOF) for Counterterrorism (CT) tage. That allows the HN government to start or resume functioning in Selected ARSOF conduct SR as a HUMINT activity that places U. training and education for political risk. (July 2008) is a practical guide directly relevant SR is a core activity of ARSOF. hydrographic or geographic and information operations. Military operations in support of COIN fall into SR may include information on activities of an actual or potential enthree broad categories: civil-military operations. SR includes target acquisition. combat operations emy or secure data on the meteorological. That includes development of SFA in joint actions in the level of physical and doctrine.S. Tactics. chemical. joint mission-essential task lists. such use does not mean can win the trust and support of its people and become self-sustaining. Doctrine for Joint Special of an international coalition. information of strategic or operational significance. ARSOF SR support of conventional forces SFA. offensive actions conducted as a special operation in hostile.

MISO are also a key related activity of IW. ARSOF’s conduct of the IO activity affects the information environment to achieve information superiority over an adversary. information-dissemination activities (during federal and local relief efforts in response to a natural or man-made disaster and as coordinated with ongoing military and lead federal agency PA efforts). neutral or hostile areas of operation to facilitate military operations and to consolidate operational objectives. operational and tactical levels of conflict as part of interagency activities to achieve U. conducts domestic U. in concert with specified supporting and related capabilities. CAO. MISO. MISO [PO] are conducted across the strategic. disrupt. psychological operations [now MISO].40. radiological or nuclear weapons capable of a high order of destruction or causing mass casualties and excludes the means of transporting or propelling the weapon where such means is a separable and divisible part from the weapon. While doctrine is being updated to reflect the nuances of the change.132. in the absence of other military operations. JP 3-57. exploit and report information on terrorist organizations.Defining War surveillance sensors and collection methods that utilize indigenous assets.S.30 and FM 3-05. The authoritative reference on SF’s role in SR is ATTP 3-18. However.” The preponderance of activities conducted by ARSOF in CP is a combination of the other ARSOF core activities. hostage or sensitive-materiel recovery that require capabilities not normally found in conventional military units. The authoritative reference on ARSOF’s role in CP is FM 3-05. CP is an ARSOF secondary core activity. Combating Weapons of Mass Destruction. CAO are conducted by the designated conventional Army and the U. and appropriate DoD directives limit ARSOF involvement in CT. the most authoritative current references remain JP 3-13. allies and partners. ARSOF activities within CT include. personnel. supports the countering of adversary information. Commanders conduct CMO to establish. and provides an important nonlethal fire under the fires warfighting function. provide primary support to IO. provides support to IO as a core capability. surveillance and reconnais- . As one of the core capabilities of IO. USSOCOM is the joint proponent for CA. influence or exploit relations between military forces and civil authorities (government and nongovernment) and the civilian populace in friendly. nongovernmental organizations. analyzes and addresses psychological factors in the operational environment. most CA units reside in the Regular Army and the Army Reserve. maintain. Two ARSOF capabilities. defines IO as the integrated employment of the core capabilities of electronic warfare. Biological. Although FM 3-05. and it normally does not require secondary confirmation. Department of Justice and Department of State have lead-agency authority. they are not MISO. These activities could include. CA forces are organized. unless they are planned and executed specifically to influence the perceptions and subsequent behavior of a target audience. operational and tactical levels and across the full range of military operations. CT is a core activity of ARSOF and a core IW activity. and Nuclear Operations. JP 3-13. the name was changed in June 2010 by order of the commander of USSOCOM. supports other agencies’ information activities (military information support). defines CAO as those military operations conducted by Civil Affairs forces that: (1) enhance the relationship between military forces and civil authorities in localities where military forces are present. MISO were formerly known as psychological operations.2 and FM 3-05. integrated intelligence. Radiological. IO is an ARSOF secondary core activity and a key related activity of IW. ARSOF conduct CT missions as SO by covert. Counterterrorism. military deception and operations security. ARSOF’s role and added capability is to conduct offensive measures within DoD’s overall combating-terrorism efforts. IO. to influence. MISO are the primary ARSOF information capability that: achieves information objectives. fully synchronized.S. biological.S. While CA forces can be found within the Navy and Marines. Psychological Operations.40 are authoritative references for MISO and CA respectively. assets and activities. network and infrastructure attacks to execute pre-emptive strikes against terrorist organizations. They may also occur. Civil-Military Operations. indigenous populations and institutions and the private sector. JP 3-26. (2) require coordination with other interagency organizations. MISO can support other capabilities or can be the supported capability in some situations. 20 Special Warfare CAO is an ARSOF core activity and a key related activity of IW. our forces. Note that the IO definition does not yet reflect the recent name change from psychological operations to MISO. While all military activities can have degrees of psychological impact on the enemy and civilian population. but are not limited to. According to FM 3-05. corrupt or usurp adversarial human and automated decision-making while protecting our own. CMO may occur at the strategic. UW and FID. as a core activity. with the concurrence of the chief of staff of the Army. but are not limited to: intelligence operations to collect. there is no direct ARSOF reference for IO. Most CT activities are classified. Civil Affairs Operations. (C) Special Forces Special Reconnaissance Operations (U). trained and equipped to provide specialized support to commanders. When received and passed to users. but SWCS is the force-modernization proponent for Army CA. Army Special Operations Forces Chemical. Information Operations. JP 3-40. MISO [PO] support all of the other core activities by increasing the psychological effects inherent in their application. and nonlethal activities to defeat the ideologies or motivations that spawn terrorism by nonlethal means. One important aspect of MIS as a capability is the role of MIS specialists as advisers on psychological effects. clandestine or low-visibility means. if directed. JP 3 40 defines WMD as “chemical. Army Reserve. Information superiority is the operational advantage gained through improved. ARSOF possess the capability to conduct these operations in environments that may be denied to conventional forces because of political or threat conditions. defines CP as actions taken to defeat the threat and/or use of weapons of mass destruction against the United States. and (3) involve application of functional specialty skills that normally are the responsibility of civil government to enhance the conduct of civil-military operations. MISO are both an ARSOF core activity and a capability. The authoritative reference on CAO is FM 3-05. MISO and CAO. It is important not to confuse psychological impact with planned psychological effects as part of MISO. MISO are the primary means of influencing foreign target audiences. intergovernmental organizations. national objectives. defines CT as actions taken directly against terrorist networks and indirectly to influence and render global environments inhospitable to terrorist networks. Legal and political restrictions. As a capability. SR intelligence is considered reliable and accurate.04.30. computer network operations. constitutes information activities across the range of military operations.

com/mission/Confucius_Rectification. doctrinal and operational discourse are ultimately unhelpful. 19. 8. Huber (ed. 14.”2011 Downloaded 02NOV10 from http://www. when such concepts restate the obvious or can’t survive scrutiny. 23. lessons learned. further complicating the goal of establishing and reinforcing up-to-date. Joint Operations. IO target or protect information. American Heritage Dictionary. Downloaded 22OCT10 from http://www. American Heritage Dictionary. Unrestricted Warfare (URW). Accessed through the free dictionary 25OCT10 from http://www.html 20.ii. Echevarria. 4. QRM. academia and the press that they demand a brief summary.”19 — The Deerhunter Regular review and restatement of approved definitions and their descriptions are necessary as sources of doctrine (e. July-August 2006. Title 10 USC Sec 167. Directorate of Training and Doctrine. Netwar. they deepen the swamp of misunderstanding and thicken the conceptual fog.cfm?q=138. 1980. our Soldiers are not English teachers.” Special Warfare. these passages are often summarized as “We are what we repeatedly do. tr. com/dictionary/activities. 01FEB10.). USSOCOM Directive 10-1cc. paras 4-5.” Marine Corps Gazette. 5. 14.” Special Warfare. currently influential. July 2010.thefreedictionary. Partisan Warfare. Special Army Special Operations Forces (Draft). unity and clarity.. most influential and most recent schools of thought as judged by the author.” NOV05. General Purpose Forces and FID. CJCSM 3500. JFK Special Warfare Center and School. Quadrennial Roles and Missions Review Report (QRM). Monterey. 15DEC09. Special Operations Forces in an Era of Persistent Conflict. 3. 20 No.” Small Wars Journal. The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language. 12. Compound Warfare: That Fatal Knot. Malvesti. incorrect usage of unapproved terms does so exponentially. Matrix Warfare.merriam-webster. OCT10. 16. OCT09.” Special Warfare. CG USASOC. Closing Generally speaking. nondoctrinal terms are so widely (and often incorrectly) used throughout government. Department of Defense Directive (DoDD) 5100. March-April 2010. “Post-heroic Warfare. As appropriate. Such official definitions can provide continuity. September-October 2009. authoritative and clearly articulated doctrine are other. “The Great UW Debate. Faculty of History Oxford. Downloaded 01NOV10 from http://www.-The.” Special Warfare. 3. Hasler. Incorrect usage of doctrinal terms sows confusion and hinders mission accomplishment. CG USSOCOM MAY09.” Joint Forces Quarterly. Nonconventional Warfare. com/scripts/Deer-Hunter. The references listed here are incomplete and representative – not comprehensive – and only cover some of the largest. ARSOF’s correct usage of doctrinal definitions provides a reliable azimuth through them. Conventional Warfare. concepts. Universal Joint Task List. FM 3-05. “The Rising Dominance of the Information Revolution within RMA Thought. Sources necessary for a broad understanding of the unofficial terms analyzed in this article are Information Warfare. U. JAN09. “The Sling and the Stone” [Book Review].”FEB99. Nicomachean Ethics.04C. 13. Qiao and Wang. Merriam-Webster 2010. JP 1-02. Book 13.20 This guide is in the center spread of this article and can be pulled out for readers to use and instruct others. policy. Internet Movie Script Database. 11. “The New Rules of War. JP 3-0. LTC John Mulbury. Fourth Generation Warfare (4GW) and derivative/similar concepts. Post-Heroic Warfare. which enables friendly forces to understand and act first. military education. Hybrid Warfare. 01JUL01. Lind. “The Changing Face of War: Into the Fourth Generation. Holistic Warfare. Legacy Warfare. the unofficial terms and theories that beguile the policy.analects-ink. 2002. is not an act. January-February 2011 21 .. Excellence. Verse 3. Hasler is a doctrine writer and analyst in the Special Forces Doctrine Division. FEB10. 01AUG02. pp 3-7. a list of the most current and/or influential nondoctrinal terms has been summarized in a quick-reference guide of terms including: Asymmetric Warfare (AW). Book 2 Section 4. 9. Accessed 28OCT10 from http://www. Calif. January-February 2008. March-April 2007. QRM. MAJ D. al.html. “Ramping Up to face the Challenge of Irregular Warfare. Compound Warfare (CW).” Special Jones. and they may therefore be relied upon for effective professional discussion. training. Confucius. Regardless of good intentions or patronage. it is important that properly-approved definitions should be adhered to and repeated often and accurately by leaders at every echelon. References 1. Global Way of War.” June 2010. 20. Although misattributed as a direct quote. Jeffrey L. Unapproved. 22 March 2010. Ware. This isn’t something else. but a habit. Before retiring from the Army in 2010 as a chief warrant officer 4. “ARSOF. 06OCT10.imsdb. 18.S. Listed alphabetically by author: Arquilla. Roles and Missions Framework. 16. Space limitations prevent a full discussion of such terms. 7. The Analects of Confucius. M. JP 1-02. 10. The ultimate targets of all IO are the human decision-making processes and the attainment of information superiority. QRM. “Unrestricted Warfare.” Downloaded 04NOV10 from http://classics. “Defining War. nondoctrinal terms. Fourth Edition. “UW/FID and Why Words Matter. McCullar. information-transfer links. “Hybrid vs. strategicstudiesinstitute. GL-II-3. May07. However. p 10. However. they become counterproductive. Department of Defense Dictionary of Military and Associated” Foreign Policy. CWO 4 Jeffrey Hasler. and the human decision-making process through core. Vol. then. and the Whole-of-Government Approach (as it applies to warfare). The Hazard of Nondoctrinal Terms “This is this. 9. LTG Mulholland.g. 4. LTC Mark Grdovic. supporting and related capabilities. FEB10. Aristotle. et. knowledge management. “Fourth-Generation Warfare and other Myths. Luttwak. By contrast. Compound War the Janus Choice: Defining Today’s Multifaceted Conflict. He is a graduate of Indiana University and the Naval Postgraduate School.” Foreign Affairs. James R. “Toward Post-Heroic Warfare. 2. Strategic Studies Institute [Link]. Hoffman. 4. 15. copyright 2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company. “To Serve the Nation. and our senior leaders are not terminologists or walking dictionaries. MAY95. COL David Witty. 3. However. 6. This is this. Network-Centric Warfare (NCW). ADM Olson.sance. OCT89. and information management (FM 3-0). Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR). operations planning and strategy) naturally evolve and doctrine is routinely updated. information-gathering and information-processing nodes. he served more than 28 years in a variety of Special Forces assignments. 7.1.