The Third Road Threat: Towards a Comprehensive Theory of Information Warfare (Part 4/4)

Abstract: The conclusion of this four-part essay series on Information Warfare, this section provides recommendations for how the US government might mitigate information aggression though both military and civilian action beginning with the recommendation to establish a doctrinal framework for thinking, communicating, planning, and acting within the information environment while organizing to meet the threat.

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The Third Road Threat: Towards a Comprehensive Theory of Information Warfare (Part 3/4)

Abstract: This third essay demonstrates the utility of the IW taxonomy developed in part two to a critical analysis of China’s Information Warfare efforts.

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The Third Road Threat: Towards a Comprehensive Theory of Information Warfare (Part 2/4)

Abstract: This second of four essays develops a taxonomy, attack vectors, definition and theory of victory for information warfare developed from first principles of information theory.

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The Third Road Threat: Towards a Comprehensive Theory of Information Warfare (Part 1/4)

Abstract: America’s adversaries are waging a decades-long information war calibrated to advance their national interests at the expense of the United States while avoiding direct and decisive conflict with the US military. Key to their strategy is exploiting ubiquitous, high-speed connectivity to directly access the American people, a national center of gravity. Simultaneously, the US government is poorly organized to engage in information conflict, lacking a unified theory, definition, doctrine, and organizational structure for Information Warfare (IW). This four-part essay develops a theory of IW using first principles of information theory. It presents a novel IW definition, taxonomy, attack vectors, and theory of victory to inform how the United States thinks and competes within the information environment and concludes with recommendations for how the United States might compete in the information war through military and civilian action. This first of four essays establishes a historical basis for thinking about information warfare as a key component of conflict from the earliest recorded battles to today.

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The Power of Truth: How to Compete with Information Warfare

Abstract: The United States Air Force (USAF) must leverage truth to defuse adversarial claims to plausible deniability. A fictional scenario of an RC-135 shootdown by a Russian private military company (PMC) conveys the implications of failure with information warfare (IW). Today, the USAF lacks the ability to counter plausible deniability in the information environment with the tempo and speed required to outpace and outthink its adversaries. Three recommendations are offered. First, the USAF should operate outside of current geographic constraints. Second, the USAF should shift to a problem-centric strategy independent of intelligence collection platforms. Lastly, the USAF should shift its information warfare posture from reactive to proactive in today’s dynamic information environment.

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