Applying systems thinking towards countering hybrid warfare
Author(s)Tan, Peihao Raymond.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Engineering and Management Program.
System Design and Management Program.
Donna H. Rhodes.
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Carl von Clausewitz, a famous Prussian general and military theorist asserted that war's nature of being violent, interactive, and fundamentally political, does not change - only its character does. According to Clausewitz, the character of war is a dynamic phenomenon that manifests differently with the "spirit" of each age. In our current digital age, technology has heavily influenced interactions, including warfare. In addition to boosting traditional military means, technology has enabled rapid and widespread weaponization of social, information and infrastructural instruments for political coercion. A rising trend of combining national instruments of power to wage war simultaneously across the political, military, economic, social, information and infrastructural domains is a rapidly emerging threat, characteristic of modem "hybrid wars" being fought today. Traditional military-centric defense policies and strategies are ill-prepared to address such threats that deliberately operate in the "grey zone", playing on ambiguity and tailoring coercion to remain just below detection and response thresholds. In this research, a combination of literature review, descriptive study, inductive approach, normative research, case study and systems thinking are applied to analyze the hybrid warfare threat and then construct a suitable response framework, treating it as system with interrelated constituent parts, synergistically working together over time, within the wider international context, to deliver an emergent counter hybrid warfare capability.
Thesis: S.M. in Engineering and Management, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, System Design and Management Program, 2019Cataloged from PDF version of thesis.Includes bibliographical references (pages 121-124).
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Engineering and Management Program; System Design and Management Program
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Engineering and Management Program., System Design and Management Program.