Accession Number:

ADA533235

Title:

Rethinking Strategic Surprise: Defence Planning Under "Bounded Uncertainty"

Descriptive Note:

Technical memorandum

Corporate Author:

DEFENCE RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT CANADA OTTAWA (ONTARIO) CENTRE FOR OPERATIONAL RESEARCH AND ANALYSIS

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:

2010-08-01

Pagination or Media Count:

42.0

Abstract:

This Technical Memorandum contends that the defence planning process is ill served by the assumption that uncertainty abounds. To the extent that uncertainty poses a serious impediment to effective defence planning against the threat of strategic surprise, it is a problem circumscribed by relatively firm knowledge as to the potential sources of danger. Accordingly, I propose recasting the problem of strategic surprise as one of bounded uncertainty. The argument is empirically illustrated through an examination of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, the Korean War, and the 911 terrorist attacks.

Subject Categories:

  • Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE