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Old 01-28-2020, 10:39 AM
Outpost75 Outpost75 is offline
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Some comments on the article linked in post #5 above:

Every threat the author raised has been used in real world operations. Russia in Georgia and Crimea; Israel against Syria.

Very real. Devastating at critical times.

Anti-access area denial has a huge defensive component. Our military ignores it because “we win on the offense”.
You can only tell the flags what they don't want to hear but so many times, then they don’t invite you into the room anymore.

Critical infrastructure protection gets a ton of lip service. I’m pretty comfortable that our nuke facilities do it well. Commercial power, telecomm, etc do it less well. Setting the right incentives for spares, maintenance, and emergency surgery capacity might do a lot more good for infrastructure protection that any lead federal agency plan.

Nuclear war is A threat, but not THE threat. It’s the black swan.

Cyber and precision strike against APOD/SPOD and C4ISR control nodes are the military threat.

SPODS have potentially devastating consequences for citizens. Bomb a LNG tanker at the port of Bayonne and things might get sporting in NYC and beyond as the consequences build over a week or two. Good Civil Defense builds resilience to buffer against major disruptions. Commercial drones are becoming cheaper every day for those who point to our great port security.

Americans are spoiled and entitled. They expect someone else to save them. Congress will balk at spending cash for CD training and risk mitigation. Everyone expects the CDC to save them from Ebola... or whatever virus results for poor lifestyle choices.

In light of all this, I think the tax structure is the right place to start CD efforts in Congress. Little things like immediate expensing for emergency repair supplies rather than depreciation. That helps utilities and businesses invest in the right things. Similar credits for family CD stocks and equipment could be arranged like the recent tax credits for so-called green energy investment.

The Generals DO know the risk to critical infrastructure. Besides Paul Nakasone, few mention them in polite company because of the risk to preferred programs. DC politics.

Share the above linked article with your elected representatives.

It’s a start if people in power read it with an open mind.

I've sent it on to my Senators and a former classmate who’s on the Carlisle Army War College faculty.

It’s worthwhile to make explicit one of my assumptions: that many bureaucrats don’t have the right knowledge or incentives to implement a large scale program. That includes military officers operating outside their expertise centers.

I don’t mean to imply that all government employees are incompetent or lazy. They aren’t. Most are quite conscientious about their duties. However, many tasks are unfamiliar or beyond their skill set. They do the best they can, which sometimes is "good enough for government work" but sometimes is harmful. The Army acquisition process is filled with examples of both. As are recent our wars.

My starting point for discussion is always to look at incentives and trust private sector initiatives. The private sector isn’t perfect and will often get things wrong. Private companies simply respond and correct faster because they have to (unless part of a monopsony arrangement buffered from immediate consequence.)

So, there IS a role for government leadership and coordination of effort. The bulk of the heavy lifting should be done by private sector experts with appropriate incentives to reward desired choices. A nudge, if you will (though I dislike the Cass Sunstein abuse of that idea).

I appologise if my comments sometimes seem incomplete due to unstated assumptions, based on a former audience.
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