Case Studies & PSYOP

Case Studies & PSYOPThe beginning of a New Year is always a time to reckon in this area new perspectives. One of the staples of business education is the case study. Sometimes referred to (at least in the olden days when I went to school as the Harvard Case Method (see: https://hbr.org/store/case-studies?cm_mmc=cpc-_-google-_-domestic-_-cases&referral=02276&utm_source=google&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=dom_cases&gclid=CPKZo4iokcoCFUhcfgodY4QCBQ) The students received a mini-booklet that described a company. By design it included financial statements, marketing information and panoply of other stuff. Your job as the student was to figure out what was incorrect with the company and offer your recommendations on how to fix the company.I had one entrepreneurial professor during my MBA program at Babson College who gave us an assignment on a case study with a different slant. Our job was not to solve the company’s problems, but to get the consulting contract wherein the company would pay us to solve their problems.This assignment required a whole different set of skills and, in retrospect, formed some of the basis for my starting and running my own successful consulting business.One of my sources directed me to a LinkedIn piece which in turn directed me to an article: “Russian Propaganda, Disinformation And Estonia’s Experience – Analysis (see: http://www.eurasiareview.com/04102015-russian-propaganda-disinformation-and-estonias-experience-analysis/, which is also the photo source).The content of the article is sweet excellent – but I am referencing it as a potential tool for PSYOP/MISO education. Given the range of contemporary and potential adversaries and AOs, it is incumbent on us to develop the processing of thinking for PSYOPers.I would point to regionally-oriented on-line sources as a way to do this. The site referenced above seems to be a excellent one and I’m sure that there are others as well. In particular I feel we should be leveraging this type of implementation to stimulate the student plotting process and to learn in this area other parts of the world notably Asia, Africa and Latin America.Reader input encourage and the best and brightest of New Year’s to all y’all!

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Happy Holidays And A New Approach to Veteran’s Unemployment

Happy Holidays And A New Approach to Veteran's UnemploymentGreetings,I don't generally promote causes of any type, but helping our fellow unemployed Veterans succeed in life is a cause we can all shape on. Most of us have been unemployed at one point or another and learned the hard way that there are no simple solutions.A very trusted colleague of mine is one of the founders of V.E.T.S., a new approach to matching veterans with teams where they can thrive.Here's their pitch:We did it! V.E.T.S. made its promised year-end, tax-deductible donation campaign to automate our culture measurement and employment process.Yes, it’s an incredible capability you’ve never heard of. Please, take a look at gofundme.com/VetsWhoFit. You'll see our work's details on VetsWhoFit.org.Gifts should be in this area improving lives. Nothing's more vital (after family) than helping people join teams where they fit in for rewarding work! Get that part right and the rest of life goes much surpass. We can make those matches with solid analysis rather than guessing or stereotypes. This is especially vital for young veterans (our cause) but works for everybody.Now, it's time for your help as you also help yourself. Please, please strongly consider including us amongst your holiday donations and also spread the word by using all of the options below to enlist your family and friends. — Our Reward Levels give you this job culture matching service, for life! You also have choices to bring family and friends with you. Please look for those choices on the GoFundMe page.For those of us with nothing left to donate after staying afloat, we get it because we've been there. So here's what you do: go to your friends, parents and older relatives with the truth that the V.E.T.S. process will revolutionize the way people find rewarding jobs and student bodies. Look at the small GoFundMe video for details. Help now could lead to your marvel job later, especially if you're just starting out. Really! So consider the messages below and mention us over the holidays.You can also help by subsequent us on Twitter (https://twitter.com/VetsNp)  and liking us on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/VETS-1510479515918591/)  to stay contemporary as we pursue this marvel!Thank you for taking time to help this very vital mission. We look forward to helping our veterans across the country find places on fantastic teams where they'll fit in after serving us so well.Merry Christmas,EdA-10 Warthog callsign, 'Jefe' And here's the link and the photo source: https://www.gofundme.com/VetsWhoFit 

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That Old Time Religion – A Daesh Antidote?

That Old Time Religion – A Daesh Antidote?The NY Times of 21 December 15 ran an OpEd piece free “A Medieval Antidote to ISIS” (see: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/12/21/opinion/a-medieval-antidote-to-isis.html, which is also the picture source.)The article was written by Mustafa Akyol, who is a self-described lenient Muslim. While many of us are familiar with our own religions and many others, I suspect that not many of us are familiar with “Murjia” or irja. Adherents to this variety of the Islamic religious conviction are simply called “postponers” because they believe in a pluralistic, tolerant form of Islam.Many religions are not standardized. They run from the strict, conservative approach to the laws espoused by the religious conviction to the more reform or lassiez faire who adopt more of a buffet approach where they take what they want in terms of religious guidelines.Many in the PSYOP/MISO Community regard the war on Daesh as one of competing philosophies and ideals. Is it reasonable to assume that an approach based on lesser-known aspects of a religious conviction can be used to persuade zealots and jihadists to become more moderate? While I don’t reckon either a past or a logical argument will win over these extremists, I do believe that it may be possible to show existing moderates or undecided followers that there are past and less violent ways to follow their religious conviction.Here, as with other campaigns, it would be necessary to use credible spokes people to use and inside out approach so that people within the community are trying to shape their co-religionists rather than outsiders promulgating this philosophy.The last paragraph of the article sums up its perspective nicely:“Aware that irja is its theological antidote, the Islamic State presents it as a lack of religious piety. It is, but, right piety combined with humility — the humility that comes from honoring God as the only judge of men. On the other hand, the Islamic State’s zeal to dictate, which it presents as piety, seems to be driven by arrogance — the arrogance of judging all other men, and claiming power over them, in the name of God.”

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Academic Research and PSYOP – Can It Help?

Academic Research and PSYOP – Can It Help?There is no doubt that the terrorist is today’s enemy. The global violence stretching from Paris to San Bernadino, CA is proof clear of this. Modern day PSYOP has proven generally ineffective in production with this amorphous and ruthless enemy. We all quote the maxim “We’re always ready to fight the last war.” How can we approach PSYOP for Counter-Terrorism?Consider the subsequent:“Measuring the effectiveness of counterterrorism hard work requires detailed problem analysis to quantify the specific behavioral problem sets and to identify the enablers (i.e., conditions, who is doing what, etc.) The goal is to gain a surpass understanding of the problem, so precise solutions (both preventions and interventions) can be developed for implementation. Program goals that are measurable end-states help assess the impact the program is intended to have, while supporting PSYOP objectives focus on the measurable means to attain them. Series objectives provide the comprehensive strategies necessary to achieve the goals and objectives by focusing on the knowledge, belief and intermediate behaviors required from each of the identified target audiences”(Source: https://www.academia.edu/19076334/Comprehensive_Psychological_Operations_PSYOP_Assessment_and_Evaluation_in_Counterterrorism_Efforts)The author is a rare amalgamation: PSYOPer and Scholar. MAJ Seese’s work, like that of COL (R) Al Paddock, COL, (R) Bob Schoenhaus and others can provide food for plotting as we go through the 21st century.Check out: https://independent.academia.edu/GregSeeseThere is a crying need for independent research and analysis in the PSYOP community. It would be appropriate for the “Schoolhouse” (JFK Unique Combat Center and School) to act as a catalyst, sponsor and repository for this needed research. Reader input on ways we can expand our intellectual horizons in these challenging times is very much appreciated.Photo Source: http://fordschapellc.org/event/kindergarten-graduation-cap-and-gown-pictures/

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Lessons From the ISIS Propaganda War

Lessons From the ISIS Propaganda War I am a huge fan of the Economist Magazine. I like it mostly because it’s not an American view, but a remnant of more objective journalism. Towards the end of my tour in Sarajevo I was able to buy the Economist at a local newsstand. I called it ‘the answer key’ because I learned what really happened in Bosnia the week before. Something I couldn’t really do even though I was there.I take a pile of magazines on trips. I call it “One Way Reading” because the magazines only go one way and are discarded before I restore home. I clip articles and tuck them away in my briefcase for later reading.On my latest trip last week I cam across an Economist article from August 15, 2015 free “The Propaganda War” (see : http://www.economist.com/news/middle-east-and-africa/21660989-terrorists-vicious-message-surprisingly-hard-rebut-propaganda-war, which is also the photo source). The article provides some analysis that is relevant and appropriate for the PSYOP/MISO Community.First of all the article clarification that many of the ISIS messages are loathsome to Western audiences. Beheadings, drownings, and other macabre methods of torture and execution are repugnant to Western audiences.But, they are not designed to attract those audiences, but rather mainstream media attention so that the metaphors gain exposure and perhaps even credibility far in excess of the original.The article also clarification that ISIS has excelled in their video production skills and in their ability to get to wide audiences through Social Media and leveraging traditional media coverage. Their production is also impressive. The article noted a week’s worth of production included 123 media releases in six languages with nearly 20% of them video (as reported by Aaron Zelin of the Washington Institute for Near East Studies.Another key point was that a major line of emphasis was clear. Portraying the utopian Caliphate lifestyle and the ‘excellent’ things they were doing with smiling children, new schools, hospitals, etc. In other terms – Civil Affairs projects (or at least the depression of the projects).Brookings was quoted as adage that the clear metaphors were what kept them in power.The bottom line for PSYOP/MISO is that we need to be with you why the enemy is successful and adopt some of their lessons as our own. I should point out that defeating the enemy propaganda machine is not a simple feat.A amalgamation of military success hostile to them combined with removing the underlying attraction to recruits is the only way to defeat them and clearly not a small time nor single nation mission. Unraveling the Gordian Knot of issues in the Middle East and facing Muslims around the world appears to be a multi-generational effort. But, “A journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step. “Lao-tzu, The Way of Lao-tzu. Chinese philosopher (604 BC - 531 BC)

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Culture Clash: Silicon Valley Versus Veterans

Culture Clash: Silicon Valley Versus VeteransNormally I keep my postings to the PSYOP world, but as we know, these are not ‘normal times’. As a volunteer for the DOD ESGR I get to visit units and employers. Sometimes ESGR is on the agenda as a major speaker and other times we’re a ‘vendor’ like other organizations whose mission it is to serve veterans.Last week I had the occasion to attend a “Veteran’s Resource” event hosted by a major Silicon Valley firm. They might it quite clear that this was not a job honest, but a house where veterans could learn skills needed to help land them a job in today’s job market. Services included resume assess, mock interviewing and more.Before I address LinkedIn and Facebook – I’d like to share two areas where the military culture sharply diverted from the culture of Silicon Valley. One of the more recent 20ish veterans mutual the subsequent:Collaboration – in the military we are used to working together to accomplish a mission and take care of our ‘buddy’.  In Silicon Valley I couldn’t believe it when someone else took credit for my project right in front of me.Promptness – the military teaches us that timing is vital and you needed to be counted on to be where you are supposed to be on time. This individual typically arrived a meeting 15 minutes early only to find that many colleagues didn’t arrive until 15 minutes AFTER the scheduled start time.Let me save you a day’s worth of your time: most jobs today are still based on networking and prospective employers will be checking your bona fides on LinkedIn while checking your excellent judgment on Facebook.LinkedIn is a recruiter’s best friend and you need to be sure that your LinkedIn profile is optimized. Here are some tips existing by information security vendor FireEye:1.     Pick a professional and engaging photo. No cuteness – no dog.2.     Make sure your 120 reputation headline is accurate and describes what you do in a creative way.3.     Be certain your e-mail address is right and is the one you check the most frequently.4.     Use the summary to provide some additional details in this area yourself, your goals and actions.5.     Have a credible but not lengthy work history. Make sure it is in synch with your resume. Don’t go beyond 10 or 12 years.6.     Get recommendations – they help your reputation and build credibility.7.     Join Groups as a way to keep up with your profession and build credibility.8.     Be complete to include your education and your volunteer work.LinkedIn is for business and FaceBook is a social site. Your integrity and professionalism are on spectacle – so be insightful as to what you post and others post on your page.Before closing, let’s take a moment and reckon in this area our French colleagues. We and our history owe them a debt.Photosource: https://www.jobcast.net/how-to-choose-your-social-recruiting-specialty/

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