DROP ZONE: Restoring a Sacred Promise

The heroic reputation of Combat Search and Rescue (CSAR) Airmen is well earned and well known. At some point, however, even the most august group of warriors become limited when the tools and concepts they employ are no longer adequate to the new challenges of an evolving multi-domain battlespace.

The Case for Dispersed Basing

There are compelling reasons for implementing dispersed basing, including survivability and the capacity to execute multi-domain operations. There are also significant challenges to overcome, including building partnerships; sustainment; restructuring personnel and training requirements; ensuring command, control, communications, and computers, intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (C4ISR) connectivity; and base defense.
By Aaron Sick

The Combat Cloud Across the Range of Military Operations: Multinational Partnerships

Today’s increasingly dynamic operational environment requires a full spectrum of multinational capabilities that span across the domains, especially those that are typically very coalition heavy, such as peacekeeping missions and humanitarian assistance. This diversity requires coalition members to become part of a dynamic information-sharing system and a specific C2 network.
By El Mostafa Bouhafa and Jacob Hess

DROP ZONE: The Combat Cloud and Multinational Partnerships

Next week, OTH will postulate why combat cloud has to be built as a coalition system, as well as probe how this new MDC2 system may apply across the range of military operations, while protecting information security from increasingly capable cyber threats.

Cosmic Girl’s Stiletto

The United States Air Force must be far more clever with the use of the assets at its disposal.
By Peter Garretson

Tyranny of the Easy Button: Finding Balance Between Contract & Organic Logistics

Proper balance between contract support and organic logistics forces is imperative to ensure the US Army’s ability to meet the future demands of a multi-domain battlespace.
By Jessica McCarthy

Bridging Startup and Military Cyber Cultures Part III: Adapting Cybersecurity Architects

The military does not create cyber culture, because it is not solely a military occupation.
By John Myers

USAF Strategic Development of a Domain

The success of our past and future battles depends on a lot more than what we do with our platforms — it depends on what platforms we have developed, where we have based them, and our partner building capacity.
By Peter Garretson

DROP ZONE: The Future Air Force

Next week, Over the Horizon will offer two posts that seek to guide leaders in developing strategy and culture within a domain.

Bridging Startup and Military Cyber Cultures Part II: Key Differences in Building a Cyber Force and Architecting Security

This initial cyber cadre will eventually recruit, train, and grow more junior personnel as the program expands.
By John Myers

Multi-Domain Thinking and the Human Domain

Multi-Domain thinking requires an understanding of the nature of domains and how they interact with each other, while ultimately focusing on affecting participants in order to achieve a lasting outcome understood in the human domain.
By Tom Flounders

DROP ZONE: The Human Domain

Multiple dilemmas are not merely to place an adversary at risk, but also to force a specific set of decisions by enemy leaders. The US must outmaneuver our adversaries in the human domain.

Outlining the Multi-Domain Operational Concept Part III: Moving Toward Practical Application

Multi-domain theory contains the potential for problem-based—rather than Service-based—solutions, leading to increased options for warfighters and decision-makers while presenting adversaries with increasing dilemmas.
By Jon Bott

Organising Logistics for Multi-Domain Battle: Making a Complex Problem Even More Complex

Sustaining operations in the hypothesised dispersed and deadly conflict zones of the present and future creates especially acute problems for land forces in multi-domain battle.
By David Beaumont

DROP ZONE: Logistics in Multi-Domain Operations

Over the Horizon is excited to announce a series of collaborations with experts from partner nations!

Outlining the Multi-Domain Operational Concept Part II: Evolution of an Idea

It is important to recognize multi-domain operations as an important new operational concept that is more mindset than prescribed method, one that evolves previous thought, and one that itself deserves continued development.
By Jonathan Bott

The Value of a Secret: Secrecy vs Innovation

Everything ran in its own compartment. I think that far more than people realize, it was a tragedy of bureaucratic inability to adapt to unconventional

Understanding Change: Improve, Innovate, or Create?

Innovation is not an end in and of itself, but rather a tool that can be used to achieve a desired end.
By Jon Farley

OTH Podcast 1: Second Generation Military Design

Welcome to OTH’s first podcast! For this debut episode we discuss the evolution of military design and how we might bridge theory to practice.

Outlining the Multi-Domain Operating Concept

By Jonathan Bott Hew Strachan wrote that “getting the questions right is the first step to finding the correct answers.” In considering the challenges of

DROP ZONE: Why Multi-Domain Operations?

War in the age of technological integration and globalization has eliminated the right of weapons to label war and, with regard to the new starting

Getting off the Bench: Challenges to Integrating Cyber into Multi-Domain Operations

Utilizing cyberspace as a warfighting domain is still, however, in its infancy. It must evolve similar to how the utilization of the air domain evolved during the 20th century
By Joed Carbonell

C4ISR Concerns for Air Mobility Command

AMC C4ISR capability is dependent on deployment and sustainment capabilities provided by multiple organizations using a mixture of classified and unclassified systems. These systems have significant vulnerabilities in regards to operational security and potential cyber attacks.
By Isaiah Oppelaar

Combat Cloud: A High Tech Solution to a Low Tech Problem

Building a common operating picture from data stored in a cloud environment and creating the illusion of the availability of perfect information creates three large risks: joint forces become more vulnerable to Electromagnetic Spectrum (EMS) attacks and reflexive control strategies; command, control, and execution become increasingly centralized; and an information-denied environment causes decision paralysis.
By Katrina Schweiker

Putting the Advantage of Mass Back into Airpower: RPA Utility Beyond the COIN Fight

The USAF and broader DOD must seriously examine the potential role for RPAs beyond the permissive battle-spaces they currently excel in. They have far more to offer than surveillance and precision strikes against undefended, soft targets.
By Mark Nexon

DROP ZONE: Decision Making

Innovation continues the quest to provide more perfect information and decrease the risk of making an incorrect decision.

Energy: The Dominant Element of the National Instruments of Power

Economic globalization, industrial modernization, and the technological revolution have led to the emergence of an element of a nation’s power that underpins them all: energy.
By Mike Benitez, Prichard Keely, and Mark Nexon

Air Mobility, Multi-Domain Operations, and the MAF’s Future: an Interview with General Everhart

“We need to be able to move at the speed of electrons and to be able to do C2 over the horizon, and know where we are with precision navigation and timing inside a multi-domain space.”

DROP ZONE: Multi-Domain C2

Next week, OTH looks at multi-domain command and control as well as how energy can be leverage as an instrument of national power.

Purpose Driven Operations

It is incumbent upon commanders to develop purposes for subordinate operations first and subsequently build the tasks. The “why” trumps the “how” both in importance and in priority.
By Tom Flounders

The Future of Mission Command: an Interview with Mr. Michael McCarthy

The Future of Mission Command: “We conceived a system in the 1990’s that is based on 1980’s technology. There is a groundswell of folks that are saying we need a new approach.”

DROP ZONE: Joint Command and Control

Our Services need to mature and lead the drive to Jointness, both across the DOD and the complex American alliance system

Innovative Space Solutions

Integrating low cost near-space balloon technology with cyber, space, air, maritime, and land forces will operationalize near-space and allow the US to retain its asymmetric advantage over future adversaries.
By Brent Cantrell

Multi-Domain Battle: Does it End the Never-Ending Quest for Joint Readiness?

Future jointness demands fundamental changes to organizing, training, and equipping the joint force to meet combatant commander multi-domain requirements.
By Mike Benitez

Multi-Domain Strategic Thinking: What Problem Are We Trying to Solve?

Multi-domain strategy therefore requires patterns of thought characterized by focus on affecting human cognition, distilling clarity from complex environments, and planning and executing operations within the uncertainty of future conflict.
By Wilford Garvin

Looking Beyond Your Service for Multi-Domain Success

For “multi-domain” to be an effective concept, the military and civilian government must have a common understanding of the term, its implications on operations, command and control (C2), acquisitions, and the necessity of military multi-domain operations to be tied into the whole-of-government’s strategic framework.
By Aaron Sick

Drop Zone: Multi-Domain Operations and the Joint Force

During the next two weeks, OTH will offer several articles to discuss the overall mindset and scope of multi-domain operations.

Making Sense of Irregular War

Irregularity in terms of non-uniformed forces and indirect force application describe how the war is fought, not why. While this may seem like academic semantics, it is not.
By Joe Brown

Climate Change, Multi-Domain Risk, and the Complexity of Interagency Science Policy: An Interview with Dr. April Melvin

Increasing temperatures and potentially intensifying weather patterns will impact conventional military operations, the broader impacts of climate change on global trends and the human domain pose a far larger dilemma for the American military.

DROP ZONE: Climate Change and the Impact on Operations

Next week in “Climate Change, Multi-Domain Risk, and the Complexity of Interagency Science Policy” OTH Senior Editor Mark Nexon interviews Dr. April Melvin.

Multi-Domain Command and Control: The Air Force Perspective with Brigadier General B. Chance Saltzman (Part 2 of 2)

How do we need to organize as an Air Force to provide multi-domain capabilities? Second, how do we train our forces so they can provide multi-domain capability? Finally, how are we equipping our forces so they can do it?

Multi-Domain Operations and Strategy in the American Revolution

George Washington’s objective was achieving victory in the human domain, and it proved to be the decisive factor for strategic victory.
By Tom Flounders

Multi-Domain Command and Control: The Air Force Perspective with Brigadier General B. Chance Saltzman (Part 1 of 2)

OTH interviews the US Air Force’s lead on developing multi-domain Command and Control.

DROPZONE: How Does the Air Force See Multi-Domain Operations?

A new concept, one the Army in particular is meaningfully exploring, is quickly coming into vogue in the Pentagon. Multi-Domain Operations (MDO) looks to combine

Reflexive Control in Operational Art: Designing Emergent Opportunity in the Vicksburg Campaign

True victory in military operations arises through the acceptance of defeat by one of the antagonists. Despite this, military decision making frequently devolves into analysis of things over thoughts. Grant demonstrated mastery of this concept at Vicksburg.
By Wilford Garvin

DROP ZONE: Looking Backwards in Order to Look Forwards

History may not easily divulge its true lessons. But by objectively analyzing past wars, we can begin to see the commonalities that commanders can exploit to achieve success.

Bridging Startup and Military Cyber Cultures Part I: A Startup Chief Technical Officer Reflects on his Military Roots

The military cyber community lacks a solid culture to set the tone and expectations for how fusing cyber and kinetic operations should be conducted, central to enabling effective multi-domain operations.
By John Myers

DROP ZONE: A Cultural Crossroads: Shaping Military Cyber Operations Culture

Organizational culture is central to how a group performs … or fails to. It sets group norms, expectations, and values that shape and focus individual

Deterrence in a Complex Nuclear Future

As the United States Air Force prepares itself for the future, it must look critically at the manner in which it achieves nuclear deterrence. The world in which we live and the adversaries whom we strive to deter are far different, and so our deterrence method must also evolve. In order to defeat our adversaries in the future, we must prepare now.
By Mary Yelnicker

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