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Unconventional Warfare Logistics: Utilizing Networked Non-Standard Approaches and Deception

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[Technical Report, Master's Thesis]

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Naval Postgraduate School

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Throughout history, many military campaigns, conventional or irregular, have failed when they were not well supported logistically. ARSOF 2022, written by Charles Cleveland and appearing in the spring 2013 issue of Special Warfare, states that United States Army Special Operations Forces will be the lead component to conduct unconventional warfare UW in the future. However, a 2013 RAND Arroyo Center study, Non-Standard Logistics Support for Unconventional Warfare Sourcebook for Planning and Capability Development, written by Matthew E Boyer et al. on nonstandard logistics identified significant gaps in existing doctrine, authorities, training, and other areas that support such operations. While providing recommendations, RAND did not provide specific solutions to the shortcomings. This thesis proposes a general model to conduct UW resupply, and operationalizes this model in the form of a UW logistics planning and execution cycle. The six-step cycle RANDOM, begins with receipt of mission R. Next, a multicategorical UW logistics feasibility assessment A occurs. Following this assessment, a non-standard N resupply approach is chosen, and a supporting military deception plan D is incorporated into the approach. The resupply operation O is then executed, and feedback from various sources allows modifications M and improvements to the cycle for future resupply operations. This thesis concludes with recommendations for leaders and planners alike and offers a solution to the current lack of existing doctrine surrounding this topic.

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[A, Approved For Public Release]