Accession Number : ADA505007


Title :   Unraveling the Persian Knot: Indirect Approaches towards Iran


Descriptive Note : Monograph


Corporate Author : ARMY COMMAND AND GENERAL STAFF COLL FORT LEAVENWORTH KS SCHOOL OF ADVANCED MILITARY STUDIES


Personal Author(s) : Brown, George C


Full Text : https://apps.dtic.mil/dtic/tr/fulltext/u2/a505007.pdf


Report Date : May 2009


Pagination or Media Count : 76


Abstract : In 1979, Ayatollah Khomeini's indirect approach ignited existing socioeconomic conditions to topple the Shah of Iran. A similar indirect approach using psychological operations to target audiences through key vulnerabilities and networks may have applicability today. Joint Pub 5-0 defines the indirect approach as the employment of attacks on an adversary's vulnerabilities when conditions do not permit direct attacks against a defined center of gravity (COG). Using a combination of operations, an indirect approach targets the COG by attacking key adversary weaknesses or requirements. When performed successfully, an indirect approach can isolate, sever, defeat, or degrade adversary capabilities to ultimately prevent their use. In the Shah's case, Khomeini used Iranian public opinion to degrade the monarch's legitimacy and the military's morale and unity to effectively neutralize the Iranian armed forces. Ayatollah Khomeini effectively unified various Iranian opposition groups through a common hatred and desire to overthrow the Shah. Most significantly, he accomplished this using psychological operations while residing almost entirely outside Iran's borders. Joint doctrine defines psychological operations as planned operations to convey selected information and indicators to foreign audiences to influence the emotions, motives, objective reasoning, and ultimately the behavior of foreign governments, organizations, groups, and individuals. Today, fear of a similar psychological invasion haunts the Iranian leadership. Although they led the Islamic Revolution 30 years ago, the regime's inner circle finds itself increasingly out of touch with today's Iranian youth. No longer catering to regime wishes as their parents did, today's youth despise both political and religious edicts. This desire for social freedom presents a constant struggle between the Iranian regime and its largest, most disgruntled, and often unemployed segment of the Iranian population.


Descriptors :   *HISTORY , *YOUTH , *PUBLIC OPINION , *POLITICAL REVOLUTION , *IRAN , *PSYCHOLOGICAL OPERATIONS , *THREATS , *GOVERNMENT(FOREIGN) , VULNERABILITY , EMOTIONS , CIVILIAN POPULATION , ATTITUDES(PSYCHOLOGY) , MOBILIZATION , CENTER OF GRAVITY , MILITARY FORCES(FOREIGN) , ISLAM , SOCIAL WELFARE , ECONOMICS , UNEMPLOYMENT


Subject Categories : Government and Political Science
      Sociology and Law
      Humanities and History
      Psychology


Distribution Statement : APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE