The Panacea and the Square Peg: Strategic Fallacies of the Air, Undersea and Cyber Domains
NATIONAL DEFENSE UNIV NORFOLK VA JOINT FORCES STAFF COLLEGE
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Strategic thought about new domains can fall victim to logical fallacies. In the interwar period between WWI and WWII, overestimating the impact of air power led strategist to view this new capability as a panacea . For the undersea domain, strategists ignored both the technical limitations that prevented submarines from performing traditional maritime warfare roles and the unique possibilities presented by the elements of stealth and surprise . The square peg fallacy illustrates the strategic effect of wedging submarines into the dominant naval strategy of major fleet engagement. Current thought on the use of cyber power appears susceptible to both fallacies. Mirror imaging the potential effects of a cyber-attack on the US leads some strategists to overestimate the strategic effects of cyber power. The Air-Sea Battle Concept demonstrates the square peg fallacy in how it advocates cyber operations as a method to defeat air defenses. Based on historical analysis, recommendations for future cyber strategy include conducting defensive cyber operations under the joint function of protection, controlling pffensive cyber operations in a manner similar to special operations, and utilizing cyber owers unique advantages against non-state actors.
- Military Aircraft Operations
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics
- Undersea and Antisubmarine Warfare