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Evolve or Die: Enhancing Electronic Warfare Capability in U.S. Army Brigade Combat Teams to Maintain Lethality and Survivability in Combat

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[Technical Report, Master's Thesis]

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The United States Army is not prepared to effectively operate in a contested electronic warfare EW environment while engaging in armed conflict against a peer adversary. In 2014 the Russian Army demonstrated their ability to rapidly locate Ukrainian command posts, front line combat formations and logistics support bases to employ EW to defeat incoming artillery and mortar fire to disrupt or deny Ukrainian communications and to spoof or jam global positioning system receivers. This change in capability was unprecedented and caught the US military by surprise. The US Army is currently minimally manned and poorly equipped to conduct offensive or defensive EW operations, cannot effectively locate or track adversarial communications and cannot effectively defend itself from adversarial attacks. The US Army needs to conduct immediate evolutionary change to EW equipment available within brigade combat teams while increasing the manning levels to provide offensive and defensive capability at the company, battalion and brigade levels. This enhanced capability will ensure that US formations are not overmatched by peer adversaries on the modern battlefield. Additionally, the US Army needs to invest in researching technology and systems that will provide long term revolutionary change in how EW is waged and the degree with which it can be employed.Without immediately addressing the gaps in electronic warfare that currently exist between US formations and peer adversaries, the US risks being outmaneuvered and incurring unacceptable levels of casualties on the modern battlefield. Systems currently exist in the US inventory and technology exists in friendly and adversarial militaries that should be harnessed to close the current capabilities gap.

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[A, Approved For Public Release]