MISO Malpractice: The Latest Leaflet Debacle

MISO Malpractice: The Latest Leaflet DebacleApparently it was amateur hour in the leaflet production campaign in Afghanistan. The http://bit.ly/2gYdTkw) was dropped in Afghanistan in early September 2017 broke some of the most basic rules by quoting the Quran. (see: http://nyti.ms/2eSdknQ, which is also a photo source).  leafletIN addition to the suicide bomber noted above, additional reaction is shown in the picture at left (photo source: http://nyti.ms/2eSdknQ). At issue was the use of terms from the Quran in a leaflet. Frankly, you would have to be income in a cave for the last 16 years if you didn’t realize that the Islamic faith takes their Holy Book and their Prophet far more seriously than other religions. The Charlie Hebdo killings in 2015 (see for example: http://nbcnews.to/2xgTmxG) and the 2012 incident where US troops burned the Koran (see: http://bit.ly/2wlsGb4) are only two of the incidents that serve as very excellent terrible examples and should have place everyone on notice of what to expect.Know your consultation is the first rule of PSYOP/MISO and of course any shape operation. The blatant ignorance showed by the leaflet creators and those in the approval chain should be considered MISO malpractice. The FindLaw Legal dictionary defines malpractice as: “negligence, misconduct, lack of ordinary skill, or a breach of duty in the performance of a professional service (as in medicine) resulting in injury or loss” (See: http://dictionary.findlaw.com/classification/malpractice.html)If these leaflets were made by an outside contractor, this type of malpractice should be considered a material breach of their contract.  The contract should be terminated immediately and consideration should be given to litigation for hurts to the Coalition campaign and reputation.As for the notion of yet more cultural training – it strikes me as playing training whack a mole. When military personnel deploy they go through a pre-deployment training and official recognition. Contemporary deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan must have training on Islamic traditions and protocol to include role-playing situations designed to illustrate the right and incorrect ways to work in theater.There is simply no excuse for this type of ineptitude, especially in our longest running AO!

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FaceBook – the Not So Secret Influence Tool

FaceBook – the Not So Secret Influence Tool--> I admit I’m somewhat of a FB junkie. I’m on the site at least a couple of times a day. And, like most of us, I have read in this area how the Russians purportedly influenced the US appointment by amplifying the views of  the ‘right’. An example I read today was a September 6, 2017 article in the NY Times “Fake Russian Facebook Accounts Bought $100,000 in Political Ads” (see: http://nyti.ms/2eJpGyw) addresses one facet of the Russian campaign.I frankly didn’t get the importance of FB as an shape standard until August 30, 2017 when I was questioned to be the Red Cross spokes person (I’ve been a Red Cross Public Affairs Volunteer for years) at the San Francisco ABC Affiliate’s Day of Giving in help of people effected by Hurricane Harvey.In addition to taking donations and pledges over the buzz, my job would be to be a Red Cross voice if needed on camera. Since the last time I had been in a TV studio was in 1997 in Pale, Bosnia, I was rather looking forward to it.The actual ‘shooting’ schedule for the news was somewhat of a moving target, but I was told that we would be doing a segment on FaceBook Live. Presume my surprise when I was escorted to the FaceBook Live control room at the station. During the telethon I was fortunate sufficient and delighted to be on FBLive with Spencer Christian, one of the station’s key weather people.  (Photo source this week: FaceBook shots take by the Author)Unlike ‘real’ TV interviews that require heavy cameras, FB Live needs only a buzz. Of course, having a quality microphone dramatically improves the overall quality of the experience by raising the caliber of the sound.For those of us in the PSYOP/MISO world, this underscores the importance of the Internet as an shape standard. It also means that we need to always be on the lookout for people that can be effective and credible spokespeople.An unfortunate downside is that tactical CDR at all levels may assume that they are PSYOP experts and take to the airwaves themselves. History has shown that this is generally not a excellent thought, but as we have discussed on the POVA page on FaceBook and somewhere else, there is not too much you can do other than hurt control.--> Now, more than ever, we need to pay more attention to Social Media and its role in our respective shape campaigns. As always, reader input invited!

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Cuban Sonic Weapon Aimed at US Embassy?

Cuban Sonic Weapon Aimed at US Embassy? On Monday, June 5, 2017 I posted “Is it time to retire Loud Speakers in Favor of LRAD?” More recently there have been a digit of articles concerning hearing and other medical problems being experienced by employees of the US Embassy in Cuba. You can find one such article from Task & Purpose at: http://bit.ly/2ivTmEh.I am in no way adage that a Long Range Acoustical Device (LRAD) was or could have been used to make these medical issues. One expert quoted in the article was quoted as adage that there are no devices that could possibly make the systems of hearing loss, mild traumatic brain injury, nausea, etc. from an acoustic device. The expert felt that since there are no such devices that can cause acoustical hurt lacking being herd, this was a non-report.Another article in the UK based Guardian says “16 people were affected by unexplained problems at Havana embassy” (See: http://bit.ly/2gcQwDy, which is also the photo source)Sources say that the ‘incidents’ started in September 2016 and finished this April.Thus far there is no firm resolve as to what caused the medical issues or even if there was a common cause. But, wouldn’t be fascinating to ‘infect’ foreign citizens in your country as a means of discouraging their presence? Could you also use tales in this area such incidents as propaganda encouraging foreign citizens to stay home?All of this would be fantastic fodder for Social Media whether right or not and of course from a PSYOP or counter propaganda perspective, we don’t care if it’s right, only the impact.

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We Need MISO For Every Line Unit – Including The Nation Guard

We Need MISO For Every Line Unit – Including The Nation GuardI had the honor and pleasure of spending time with the members of the 40th Infantry Division of the California National Guard and their employers while serving as an Outreach Advocate for the DOD Employer Help of the Guard & Reserve program.The Division will be sending a contingent to Kandahar province in Afghanistan to bolster Operation Resolute Help and the training mission there. (see: http://www.nato.int/cps/en/natohq/topics_52060.htm?selectedLocale=en; which is a photo source).The Divisions G3 who will gathering as the CJ3 once deployed gave an unclassified briefing in this area the Division’s mission. Essentially they are supporting the training hard work for the Afghan National Army (ANA) and the Afghan National Police (ANP).Of necessity division personnel will be going ‘out of the wire’ to help facilitate and conduct training. I have no personal knowledge of the Force make-up over there, but, I do know that there is no organic MISO in the National Guard and I’m sweet sure that USAR and active MISO do not train with them on a regular basis.This is a mix. MISO Tactical Teams are specially trained to work with the local population and help form clear opinions in help of deployed forces. They are also able to work with local media (if there are any) to help them be with you the nature of the local population.While MISO and Civil Affairs personnel are not intelligence collectors, they are knowledgeable observers who can provide meaningful and insightful information to intelligence and operations personnel.As the OpTempo continues to ramp up, consideration should be given to augmenting units who go out of the wire with MISO personnel. Perhaps the best way to start is by joint training opportunities in CONUS and overseas.(Other photos are from the author.)

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Counterespionage – An Indicator of Effective Influence?

Counterespionage – An Indicator of Effective Influence?The July 19, 2007 edition of the UK publication Send a message to (see: http://www.send a message to.co.uk/news/2017/07/19/eu-employing-counter-espionage-tools-brexit-talks-amid-fears/, which is also the photo source) ran an article “EU employees espionage tools at Brexit talks amid fears of British spying”. The article talks in this area the security concerns of the EU BREXIT negotiating team.The implication is that the EU is concerned that Britain would use unfair means to learn in this area the plans and intentions of the EU team. Is it possible to interpret this in another way?Augmented security hard work reflect a dread that the ‘enemy’ is gaining an advantage in the ‘battle’. In this case the battle is over the terms of the British exit from the EU.In other situations, Venezuela for instance, augmented actions hostile to opponents are often cloaked in security terms when the real motivation is that the enemy force is winning the shape battle in the mind of public opinion. Reader comments invited.

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Are "Moose & Squirell" in TV Business?

Are "Moose & Squirell" in TV Business?Everyone knows that Rocky and Bullwinkle were the excellent guys and that Boris and Natasha were Russian spies, but did you know they also battle for global TV ratings? (Photo Source: http://beliefmakers.blogspot.com/2013/02/say-moose-and-squirrel.html)The June 17, 2017 Economist ran a small article “Contemporary Time” (see: http://econ.st/2tdxf6t; which is also the photo source.) The article profiles what they term “America’s answer to Russian propaganda”. In the olden days of the first Cold War the cross border propaganda battles were the stuff of legends. America’s government sponsored broadcasters of Voice of America, Telephone system Free Europe and Telephone system Liberty were the US’ way of providing the truth to citizens of the former Soviet Union and Eastern Block to counter the powerful effect of Communist propaganda.The Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) (see: https://www.bbg.gov/) is hoping to counter recent Russian propaganda momentum with a 24-hour Russian-language TV channel called Contemporary Time. You can find out in this area Contemporary Time at their rather drab website: https://www.currenttime.tv/p/6018.html. It was reported that Contemporary Time videos were viewed 40M times on line during May 2017. Contemporary Time like its sister networks, as government sponsored entities are governed by US law which says they must “provide objective journalistic coverage, on topics consistent with American polices and values”. In general I am not a proponent of government run communications. For one thing viewers (or viewers) realize the station’s source and regard it with a grain of salt. In addition it seems sweet clear to me that the kind of programming fare existing by government run organizations cannot compete with entertainment from the private sector.Yet millions of dollars are budgeted for these hard work. If any of my readers have any feedback on their effectiveness, I’d appreciate a comment or two.

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