posted on Mar, 17 2014 @ 09:21 PM
UK Government Looks
to "Armed Propaganda" to Win Wars
For both sides, showing successful attacks on the opposition or highlighting the abuses of occupying forces is essential to forcing a withdrawal
through undermining domestic support or fomenting international unpopularity.
The latest report on global strategic trends from the Ministry of Defence calls this “armed propaganda”, highlighting the fact that attacks may be
staged as much for their value on YouTube as their physical effect in weakening the enemy. From this point of view, all wars are media wars and, with
this in mind, the MoD predicts that “kinetic” force will become less important as social influence becomes increasingly significant in defending
Military forces have long talked about "winning hearts and minds," and of course psychological warfare and psyops will be familiar topics to many on
What seems to be new about this particular approach is that it seems more finely-tuned than past efforts I have read about. And rather than targeting
insurgents or soldiers directy, it targets people on the homefront. The effort is not to sap the will of the fighters or impact their ideologcial
orientation; rather, it is to undermine the systems of support for the war effort as a whole in the societies they emerge from. Thus, it is a bit like
attacking the logistical supply train of an army, but on the cognative level.
This approach also makes use of social networks...everything is social networks these days, it seems. Businesses have been establishing social
networking strategies for some time. Now its the military's term to get all sociable.
ATS is a social network, of sorts, and one that is very political in nature. It seems ripe for targeting.
There is, of course, a shadow side to this effort. If governments can convince people that the enemy is trying to undermine their nation's efforts on
social networks, then they can also shut down legitimate dissent on the homefront. The possibilities for domestic oppression are unsettling to say the
The use of the expresson "armed propaganda" also is effective in giving the impression that words are weapons. Expressing your opinion mught thus
not be considered "free speech" but a type of insurrection.