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This argument manifested into Conversely, Deptula and several other USAF leaders advocated for the implementation of EBO processes whose efficiency had already been de- monstrated in the air component command structures. Nevertheless, the fact remains that some, like U. Concurrently, the U. This was then exported to and disseminated within the U. Army in Finally, operational design OD was incorporated at the beginning of the last decade in the U. Joint Publications as a methodological melting pot of operative art.

Hence, OD is the perfect example of a constructive ap- See, for example, K. Army Command and General Staff College, The Effects of Air Power proach in which the decision-maker constructs their own reasoning model in association with a learning process that reflects its decision-making. As such, OD can be described as a reasoning method, aimed at structuring the complex problems of engagement both before and during the classic opera- tional planning process.

In the U. In summary, OD begins with representing the operational environment and defining its desired end state DES by discerning the set of conditions to be achieved via a systemic perspective. The third step is to determine the operational approach to be used. The OD explains the mechanisms to be implemented for example, the use of either a direct or indirect approach to defeat the enemy or stabilise a situation.

Within its structure, it can be quite similar to a classical course of action as it is articulated in strands of efforts or operations linking intermediate factors de- cisive points, intermediate objectives, etc. It is under this conceptual framework — updated iteratively with detailed planning particularly during the mission analysis phase — from which the actual course of action can be then developed.

Today, even though distinctive nuances remain between armed forces, the systemic perspective is solidly anchored into U. In practice, approaches continue to be fine-tuned, especially during the conduct of operations. During Operation Inherent Resolve against Daech, Air Force and of the intelligence commu- nity units developed micro-target systems analysis to support targeting ope- rations and to update intelligence preparation. See A. See M. Kreuzer and D. In the context of these multiple experiments, Germany has been taking the lead in both SOSA and KD developments even though their own intelligence institutions had yet to adopt them.

Contrarily, many other Allies United Kingdom, Canada, etc. In France, the systems approach first gained momentum at the end of the s in the form of two initiatives. The first was part of the structuring efforts on the function of targeting within the French Air Force, then wit- hin the Centre for the Planning and Conduct of Operations formerly the Joint Operational Centre starting with Operation Allied Force in The second, carried out in parallel by the Directorate of Military Intelligence DRM , consisted of incorporating this approach into the first body of joint military intelligence doctrine.

Above all, beyond support to targeting, the objective was also to wholly structure the analysis of an adversary within the framework of the French JIPOE method also developed at that time, to better support both anticipatory and crisis planning. Yet in practice, applying the systems ap- proach continued to mostly be in connection to targeting work on an episodic basis, involving in particular the DRM and the National Targeting Centre. This was primarily undertaken for anticipatory planning.

The reforms initiated by French Army General Christophe Gomart in , then director of the DRM, paved the way for the French intelligence community to progressively to be in charge of the bulk of these analysis in support to the full spectrum targeting FST on which the operation chain focused its efforts In addition, The Effects of Air Power systems analysis is also implemented on an ad hoc basis in support of several major operations, notably Operation Serval and Operation Chammal Lastly, the systems approach has not remained exclusively in the West.

China, as well as, has evolved their conception of warfare in the early years of the last decade: It is now described as an opposition between system-of-sys- tems SoS of command, strike, intelligence-reconnaissance, support, and informational confrontation. Each engagement requires the implementation of a specific operational SoS to integrate these subsystems according to the contingency.

The objective — directly drawn from U. To conclude, although systems approach is widely used, its implemen- tation nevertheless poses major challenges. Some of which continue to be enduring, while others have appeared more recently as they are linked to technological and strategic developments in the present years.

The study of these challenges will be the topic of the following article. His work focuses on military concepts, capabilities, and technical-operational evolutions; the United States defense policy, opera- tional concepts and capability strategies; the methodology of strategic analysis and situation assessment; and the forms of armed conflict and military inter- ventions.

The systems approach has been progressively adopted — across the At- lantic and amongst Western militaries to various degrees — in intelligence support and planning processes through targeting, effects-based operations, and Operational Design1. However, the exploitation of its full potential still faces multiple challenges. Implementation biases, methodological shortcomings, and the inadequacy of certain processes limit the possibility of truly capturing the complexity of cer- tain situations, thereby contributing, at times, to discrediting the approach.

Indeed, the development of information technologies and practises Big Data, artificial intelligence, etc. Furthermore, a complex system is characterised not only by a structure individuals, infrastructure, equipment, etc. This consumption itself is also influenced by demographic, socio-economic, environmental, and ideological factors, and so forth. Additionally, modelling a transport system also re- quires taking into account geography, politics, finances, trade unions, local history, other transport modes, and more.

Lastly, in the more specific case of strategic confrontations, the way friendly and adversary systems respond to tensions — in other words, their potential fragility or resilience — must also be considered, as summarised by Australian Wing Commander Andrew Hoff- man in his dissertation3. All in all, the entirety of these elements maintains diverse, heterogeneous, and non-linear relationships, which fluctuate and transform in nature and in- tensity. This complexity thus renders the evolution of a system and its com- ponents particularly unpredictable and unreplicable4, contrary to that of a Cartesian system.

A complex system is therefore arbitrarily delimited and must be un- derstood according to its structure, its functions, as well as the mechanisms and dynamics that govern it. By consequence, these three approaches itera- tively respond to each other. Le Moigne, General system theory. Even though these complex phenomena are characterised by patterns of behaviour or evo- lution that aggregate and transcend these multiple elements in a similar way in roughly com- parable situations the famous principles of war are good examples.

The Effects of Air Power From a practical point of view, the military-related question is whether this type of system can be reduced analytically. For those who conformed with the growing anti-EBO wave and supported the emergence of Opera- tional Design, this is a futile endeavour as the Iraqi experience confirmed.

Theoretically, a perfect systems approach can only proceed in a holistic way, making it absolutely necessary to understand the system as a whole. Never- theless, while a purely holistic method can be envisaged during the design process5, where the general outlines of the operational approach are brains- tormed, it remains difficult to envisage this in the context of targeting, where it is necessary to identify precise targets from a practical point of view.

The Methodological Deficit The phenomenon is further amplified by a blatant methodological deficit. It recommends to base this process on joint intelligence preparation of the operational environment JIPOE 7, by combining both quantitative and qualitative approaches.

Similarly, regarding targeting itself, the typology of systems is far too prescriptive. While the lists of target systems e. Conversely, the corpus does not provide any model or precise template for these target systems, whose method of analysis re- mains at the discretion of the operators. Quality supervision is therefore crucial. Deptula, art. Contemporary Challenges to Systems Approach To continue, systems analysis places too much emphasis on structural and functional analysis. It does not sufficiently take into account the multi- ple influencing factors and systems dynamics mentioned earlier.

This leads to two errors. This is nonsense, given that the task of breaking down complex systems is a Sisyphean task, as explained earlier. To take the example of urban transports again, where should one stop during the technical breakdown of the network? At the characteristics of the trains and buses or at the architecture of the stations?

Throughout this endless and painstaking quest for detail, there are also political, social, and economic factors that must be considered in parallel. The solution proposed by the U. The dissemination of tools, such as Analyst Notebook, designed in the security field to analyse specific criminal and ter- rorist networks, is symptomatic of this trend. While such network reconsti- tutions are certainly important, they should only be considered as a single aspect of the systems approach.

To take another example, simply analysing the skeleton, the nervous system, or the blood vessel system is only a single component of analyses that can be done on the human body. Many officers therefore prematurely turn away from this methodo- logy, condemning many works for lacking accessible sources. The most logical approach in intercepting this trend is to promote two levels of analysis.

The first is a top-down, holistic approach, whose purpose is not to carry out a detailed structural and functional analysis, but rather to take into account as many other axes as possible, such as dynamics, influen- cing factors, and so on. The second approach is bottom-up, which focuses on these COGs in a more detailed systems analysis, using the method of critical capabilities, requirements, and vulnerabilities.

In this regard, 9. Subsequently, the bottom-up analysis dissects these COGs to find where this equipment and these buildings are located, the communi- cation and support networks that feed into it, and more. Nevertheless, the top-down analysis identified another possible COG.

It reveals indeed that officers of the air defence forces, for socio-political reasons, have always been amongst the fiercest opponents of the regime; as a consequence, they have been isolated from the state apparatus. Hence, their combativeness during confrontations presents itself as a new possible COG, susceptible to influen- cing, provided that there is adequate actionable intelligence.

This differentiation of granularity levels includes other potential benefits. For one, it can better focus collection efforts. Full analyses of certain target systems may also be of relative value, depending on the situation. This process then subsequently evolved beyond planning to the conduct phase.

GCNAs could be carried out over a period of one month in the following As far as understanding the dynamic evolution of the system is concerned, admittedly, it remains a difficult endeavour from a methodological point of view. The classic approach, widely explored by Germany in the framework of multinational experiments, is to deconstruct the most obvious dynamics via causality diagrams. But here again, from a methodological point of view, how can dispersion over dynamics of little interest be avoided?

One of the best ways to proceed would be to tailor such an analysis to targeting needs. The Lack of Perpetual Reapplication of Processes These constraints illustrate another problem relating to the synchronisa- tion of collection operations, analytical formulations, and the exploitation Smith and S. Contemporary Challenges to Systems Approach of such analyses in operational planning and conduct. It is not repeated again as the planning progress advances onwards.

A TSA, for instance, is a lengthy process, lasting up to eight to twelve months. The planning and conduct of collection opera- tions to gather intelligence involve a cumbersome synchronisation process at the strategic level, which is not often accommodated by constant reorienta- tions. On the other hand, while general planning processes indeed take into account the interactions required between analysis and exploitation, it does not do so in the most ideal manner. However, this is only an implementation of an analysis that had been previously carried out in its first and only phase.

To make the most of the systems approach, all processes should be redesigned to incorporate analyses that can be both undertaken and im- plemented repeatedly. Such judgement calls are easier to make for cases spanning several years or in the context of sustained strategic confrontations involving several cycles of targeting efforts.

Concurrently, regarding the conduct of operations, seeing how the U. Formal processes must now endeavour to better incorporate these different avenues and consider them on a global scale as far as anticipating, planning, and the conduct of operations are concerned. Finally, updating the intelligence preparation of the operational environ- ment IPOE and eventually amending the Operational Design should be essential steps in the evaluation of a sustained, long-term campaign.

The evaluation processes prescribed by documents, such as the U. Such assessment constitute a managerial approach that former U. Defence Se- cretary Robert McNamara would not have disapproved of. It transposes me- thods from civil institutional and corporate management to a theatre of ope- rations.

Yet, they have not necessarily improved the decision-making process The Effects of Air Power for executives. Deve- lopment agencies, which have long used these techniques, have been impor- tant sources of inspiration in that matter for the military during the peace operations and irregular wars of the last 25 years Indeed, they proved clearly to be ineffective in Afghanistan. Yet, despite hundreds of hours of feedback and symposia devoted to solving this enigma, the bureaucratic entrapment remained.

Here again, the systemic perspective should form the basis of such evaluations to highlight in a more holistic way the mechanisms at work in the system To some extent, the abundance of data is likely to transform the systems approach. A first element to improve on is regarding the growing multiplicity of informa- tion collection capabilities.

While the increasing diversification of sensors is bound to push the limits of systems analysis, it will still not erase them. This diversification concern indeed primarily technical sensors especially signals and imagery intelligence and Internet sources.

Therefore, it will considerably enrich the awareness and monitoring of many intelligence targets exposed to such means, but its contribution will undoubtedly remain limited for certain variables, such as the classified intentions of adversary leaders, the nature of their relations with each other, the actual functioning of certain functional chains, clandestine activities, etc. Moreover, such growing mass of sensors and data does little to alleviate the recurring challenges of the orientation of the collection effort, which remains instrumental.

Questions thus remain as to what is to be studied and the issues that are to be addressed. Such advances could accelerate the search and exploitation phase of relevant data, either previously stored general intelligence, current intelligence, or prior intelligence support productions or obtained through collection ope- rations. Nonetheless, much remains to be done in regard to unstructured data and information13 generated from sources of various formats that are Gros and J.

Unstructured data or information has not been previously processed as in indexed, tech- nically and semantically structured, and classified and resides in the original format of the The challenge will also be to obtain consistent results with sufficiently justifiable rationale in order to wholly delegate certain tasks to algorithms in complete confidence.

Subsequently, this very constraint continues to generate doubt regar- ding the use of AI on analysis itself. Indeed, perhaps in the near future, AI should significantly improve the speed of structural analysis of well-de- fined networks. For more complex problems, qualitative modeling solutions exist in theory, which are more easily understood by experts than digital solutions.

For example, researchers at the French National Institute for Re- search in Computer Science and Control INRIA have demonstrated the added value of modelling using software automata14 to measure the impacts of overfishing on marine ecosystems. Their modeling takes into account the uncertainty of certain relationships, the heterogeneity of the mechanisms at work, the temporal dynamics etc. Finally, and again, it is essential to master the complexity of these models and, above all, to overcome the diffi- culty of interpreting and explaining their results.

Operational and Strategic Contexts Similarly, the strategic context has important outcomes regarding the sys- tems approach. With the return of strategic competition, targeting must also address hybrid strategies, which consist of exerting disruptive effects on a range of civilian or military targets, while remaining below the threshold of armed conflicts.

Thus, targeting must adapt the use of military instruments to the courses of action of these indirect strategies. Systems approach at the strategic level is hence profoundly affected by both the method and the information required for its implementation. This requires an in-depth un- information source regardless of its nature.

They represent the bulk of the data constituting the information field. All simple everyday machines can be modelled by automata. The challenge here is to combine them with each other and with other more comprehensive models. The systems approach in the context of direct strategies is also reconcep- tualised due to the new paradigm of MDO operations.

The latter envisages a much closer integration of the effects and tasks of various actors force com- ponents and various commands across all domains land, air, sea, cyber, or outer space, electromagnetic and informational , both at the operational and tactical or even sub-tactical level.

From a systemic perspective, MDO is a paradox. Indeed, supporting MDO operations inherently requires a sys- tems approach that transcends the various domains. Yet, the very nature of the effects and actions — the way they are conceived and conducted — varies widely between the traditional physical domains, the cyber domain, and the information domain. Such stark heterogeneity undoubtedly renders process integration in regard to targeting particularly complicated. In this respect, it would seem appropriate to aggregate the different systems analyses that have been developed separately for their individual supporting purposes.

The very nature of MDO operations poses other challenges. One of its objectives is to improve the ability to seize tactical opportunities by streamli- ning the decision-making process. This should establish subsidiarity at the lowest tactical level to which command and control authorities may be trans- ferred or delegated from the component level.

In other words, MDO are likely to turn operations into a large, more or less decentralized dynamic tar- geting exercise. The key then is to reconfigure intelligence support so that it is robust enough to sustain the entire apparatus, if not, MDO would simply be rendered as a futile effort of attrition. Operation Unified Protector of may be an indicator that intensively upgrading intelligence prepara- tions at the tactical level within a limited timeframe is, in fact, feasible, even Contemporary Challenges to Systems Approach for the French armed forces An identical process, by consequence, should also be applicable in the case of micro-TSAs.

Moving forwards, the most immediate obstacles that lay ahead are three- fold. The first is transitioning these methodological deductions into reality. The second relates to information-sharing within the Alliance. Producing analyses in a multinational context not only requires already-developed out- puts to be accessible, but also high speeds when sharing tactical ISR.

Current practises, constrained by both culturally and politically rigid security arran- gements, do not allow for this. This is especially the case if MDO operations were to also extend into the sensitive cyber domain. The final obstacle to overcome is human resources. Achieving and maintaining this com- petence, including the way in which expertise can be accessed in a highly de- centralised system, continues to pose the same two-part challenge of twenty years ago when reflections on network-centric warfare first began.

In conclusion, as present-day operations become increasingly complex, systems approach becomes all the more necessary in order to optimise the full potential of intelligence and command instruments, and of course, ca- pabilities.

Hence, more effort must be invested into evolving methodology beyond the still-present but ill-suited culture of analytical exhaustiveness and excessive focus on detail. While the latter remains required to support the planning and conduct of tactical actions at the end of the process, it must not be undertaken to the detriment of understanding the system as a whole, for only it alone can sustain a strategy. He is conducting research on grand strategy. A for- mer fighter pilot, Colonel Richard Gros flew some 2, flying hours on various versions of the Mirage His deployed assignments include four years in Djibouti and temporary duties in the Middle East, the Horn of Africa, and Central Africa.

His research is centered on the changing perceptions of how to seize the initia- tive, as well as the transformative nature of space-time, particularly in regard to "heterotopias" as conceived by Michel Foucault , thresholds, and transitional spaces. Moreover, he serves as a reserve officer for the Center of Strategic Aerospace Studies.

The enemies can threaten to use force, or use it. From then on, stems a kind of calculation available to the parties, between the expected gains on the one hand and the investment or sacrifice made to achieve them on the other. An instrument of this dialec- tic, coercion seeks to constrain an actor by forcing him to act in a certain way or by forcing him to stop to act.

This is what Thomas Schelling categorizes as compellence and deterrence3. Threshold Effects in Strategy From a philosophical point of view, coercion aims at influencing the be- havior of actors by means of a form of rationality. While this form of linearity works in the general case, it does not allow us to solve the strategic equations posed at the limits of these rationalities and, which require recourse to the theory of thresholds.

A threshold is a level or point at which a phenomenon is detected, occurs or evolves. The threshold is modeled by a break between two linearities that invalidates the possible cal- culations at a distance from this critical point. In strategy, when approaching a threshold, the cost of entry becomes disproportionate to the expected gains. Russia used them for example for the annexation of Crimea thanks to Russian nationals living in Ukraine.

Deploring these doings but lacking effective legal instruments to make Beijing or Moscow back down, the West diagnosed Russia and China as having found a space for offensive maneuvers below their individual and collective reaction thresholds. In the case of Crimea, no clearly identifiable marker in the Western thought pattern marked the Russian strategy.

An action happening below the threshold of armed conflict annexation of Crimea could have been supported by put- ting Russian nuclear assets on alert. The use of nuclear weapons is simulated in military exercises to start de-escalading the conflict4. Hybrid, conven- tional and nuclear actions get intertwined, which could accentuate a misun- derstanding of the stakes and destabilize the international order.

Yet, biology, psychology and philosophy inform us that the awareness of thresholds, which are part of the inherent mechanisms of perception in 4. For a critical approach to the concept of Escalade to De-escalate, see E. The Effects of Air Power living organisms5, is necessary for the perception of change to occur. The elimination of thresholds amounts to a reduction in the perception of si- gnals, notifications or escalation.

On the other hand, frank actions mark, signal, and send a more easily perceptible and clearer message. Henceforth stems the question of the impact of removing the high and low boundaries at strategic and military level, for air and space power. The purpose of this article will therefore be twofold. On the one hand, we will show how thresholds facilitate the reading of strategies and inten- tions and tend to make them less prone to escalation6.

On the other, we will explain how thresholds reinforce the perception of the effects of air power, particularly the kinetic effects of strategic range. A biological description of the notion of thresholds will first show how they are natural and necessary to life, and then how they manifest themselves in the human species, at the physiological and psychological levels. A philo- sophical approach will then illustrate how this physical reality has insinuated itself into the psychic level of the species, as much at the individual level as at the group level.

Finally, the elevation of the subject to the level of strategy will allow us to focus on the manifestations of thresholds in international relations and to understand their indispensable character, especially in the control of escalation, nuclear dialectics, and strategic signaling. A Biological Grounding of Perception At the human, macroscopic scale, nature is tangible and continuous.

Quantities such as temperature and pressure, for example, physically respond to more continuous change. When they are measured, their variations, even rapid, are gradual8. A thermometer displays values, which change without jumping to intermediate values. In contrast, an observation at the subatomic scale shows that nature is es- sentially made up of vacuum, energy and particles whose states are discrete, i.

The awarding of the Nobel Prize in Medicine to D. Julius and A. Patapoutian for their discoveries concerning temperature and pressure receptors have highlighted this reality. Their work has shown that perception by threshold is inscribed in the genetic heritage of living be- ings.

Neologism used in this circumstance in the armies. In infintesimal reality the discrete thresholds of excitation of the particles in a system com- bine and produce the notion of system temperature; conversely, the ambient temperature of the system modifies the excitation thresholds of the particles composing the system.

Threshold Effects in Strategy diate phases. The continuity at the macroscopic level is only apparent and does not account for the discontinuous reality of the microscopic. Human beings are thus made up of cells which are themselves composed of molecules, thus of atoms, particles, energy and vacuum. Notwithstanding their infinitesimal discrete composition, their reality and their vital quantities such as tempera- ture, blood pressure, etc, are continuous.

The perception that living beings have of their environment occurs at the macroscopic scale: They perceive magnitudes and not particulate matter. If it appears intuitive, this reality is nevertheless verified by the works of D. Their discoveries concerning temperature and pressure receptors have brought to light the reality of threshold perception at the molecular level9. To remain on the example of temperature, living beings will perceive a change when their local temperature evolves appreciably in direct contact by conduction or in proximity by infrared radiation to a heat source The difficulty of this type of perception lies in its relative character.

Indeed, living beings, lacking a reference or an internal origin, do not feel an abso- lute magnitude but a variation of magnitude. The desensitization value represents the threshold of perception below which information is not perceived by the sensor and will not result in the production of a stimulus.

This reduction in stress in living beings placed in favorable conditions favors their adaptation to the environment and, consequently, makes it possible for them to rest, attain serenity and, in fine, more accurately identify alerts. Finally, desensitization around the mean value allows receptors to use that value as a reference by refocusing on it and, thus, to enable better detection of any variation away from the mean.

As sensors often have a reduced detection range, this refocusing makes it easier to detect any changes to alert the subject if ne- cessary. A good alert can lead to a healthy reflex such as an immediate 9. It is common to hear about four modes of heat transmission: conduction, radiation, con- vection and advection. We will only consider conduction and radiation here, as the change in temperature by convection and advection is by contact, i.

The Effects of Air Power movement backwards when in contact with a source of intense heat or a reaction of preservation when faced with a predator. How does this indispensable character of the thresholds, allowing the species of the fauna and the flora to perceive their environment, manifest itself in Man?

From Anatomy to the Psyche in Humans Two fields of medicine are particularly relevant to the analysis of thresholds and perception of the environment in the human species: the stu- dy of sensory receptors on the one hand and psychology on the other. Both will be briefly considered here.

In anatomy, touch is the human sense that best illustrates the notion of threshold. The work of the neurophysiologist D. Rose, who is interested in thermoreceptors, i. Rose establishes that this depends mainly on three factors. The first is the initial skin temperature. As a result, it becomes more sensitive to heat.

By symmetry, the lower the body tempe- rature, the more sensitive it will be to cold actually a lower heat level. The second factor is the speed of temperature change. A slow temperature change is less easily perceived than a rapid change. Finally, there is the size of the stimulated surface area, the increase which leads to an increase in the thermal sensitivity of the subject.

In other words, the more the pheno- menon is spread out, the easier it is to perceive. Since their transposition appears so intuitively enlightening, it is inte- resting to bear in mind these physiological properties when one wonders about the efficiency of the use of force, and of air and space power in par- ticular.

Is a targeted use of bombing, for example, more likely to preserve the sensitivity of the adversary than an extended use? Are adversaries more sensitive to escalation heating up than to de-escalation cooling down? Are they also quicker to react to a sudden aggression than to a slow deve- lopment of a situation? The anatomical example of heat perception could be reinforced by those of hearing, sight, taste and smell, whose receptors function according to the See for example the interview of the neurophysiologist D.

Rose, available on the ENS website: D. Threshold Effects in Strategy same principle of sending impulses to the central nervous system only once a minimal stimulus threshold is crossed. Rather than examining them all, it seems more relevant to emphasize that these anatomical properties are also manifested at the psychological level in humans and mammals in general.

The empirical work of psychology professors R. Lubow and A. Lubow and Moore first isolated the behavior in sheep and goats in without any preconditioning e. In other words, the phenomenon occurs naturally. It refers to the ability of individuals to pay less attention to an envi- ronmental stimulus — or even to ignore it completely — when exposure is re- current.

If an individual is repeatedly exposed to a stimulus, his or her mind will eventually become accustomed to it and will no longer perceive it, even though the stimulus excites his or her sensory receptors and the latter gene- rate a nerve impulse. It is as if the mind applies a second filter in addition to the physiological filter existing at the level of the receptors and responds only when a threshold was exceeded, not only in amplitude but also in frequency. Thus, psychology, as well as anatomy, illustrate that thresholds are inscribed in living beings, both at the biological and psychological levels, and that they have a fundamental role in the perception that individuals have of their en- vironment.

That being said, do thresholds influence the way people think? From the Psyche to the Collective Thought, Philosophical Approach In order to try to understand how the existence of physiological and psy- chological thresholds makes it possible to define a framework of thought in this case of anticipation and calculation likely to influence a strategy, we can begin by recalling the distant meaning of this notion.

A first acceptance of a threshold first refers to a physical space that delimits two heterogeneous realities. To cross the threshold of a house is to switch from a public or external space to a private, singular space, where the newcomer will have to be attentive because he does not know yet what to expect. He has eve- rything to discover about the organization that prevails inside this non-neutral space.

This is why, since Greek antiquity, the threshold has taken on strong symbolic importance, and wealthy families adorn it with statues to reinforce its visibility and even incite the visitor to be ready to meet the unexpected. The physical nature of thresholds underlines its transitional nature. Once crossed, one enters a new type of relationship — particularly codified in many cultures: The relationship of hospitality, made up of gifts and counter-gifts, but also of See also the work of F.

The Effects of Air Power reciprocal obligations, each one being expected to respect its prerogatives. For the Romans, crossing the threshold also meant entering a domain protected by the Lar, a deity unique and specific to this place, which surrounded the nature of his influence with a kind of mystery. In a certain way, the threshold exists to be seen, to let you differentiate the place where you come from, from the place where you project to be, and to prepare yourself to adopt other registers of behavior.

The threshold does not only underline the heterogeneous nature of the en- vironments that it makes it possible to distinguish; it also characterizes a qua- litative leap in levels, that one encounters in human psychology, where deve- lopment takes place gradually, through various acquisitions corresponding to stages. The psychologist H. Wallon specifies that each of these stages is marked by a critical threshold: to evolve from a state to another in cognitive develop- ment is often synonymous with a crisis that must be overcome, as in the case of a child to be weaned, or in the adhesion of an adult to values which will become her own and will brand her choices.

Graduation offers a better understanding of changes of behavior, because it highlights a certain number of intermediate stages where we can hope to act to avoid the rise to extremes. This procures the advantage of a certain predictability, of possibilities for action and of time to act between the different stages, before reaching fateful thresholds. However, the absence of intermediate states is extremely dangerous in a strategic context where what is potentially at stake in the interplay of actors is neither more nor less than their very survival.

This creates a context that forces a party to be more responsive than the adversary and to immediately employ extreme means, to prevent the enemy from opting for a first strike with full force Such a notion might partly explain why the human mind expects to encoun- ter gradual action in coercive strategies and has some feeling for what is and is not worth punishing, and of the degree of severity to be expected depending on what is about to be done.

But this does not predict how the warning, which One can thus think of the strategic context between India and Pakistan, two contiguous states with no mutual strategic depth and each possessing a nuclear deterrent. Threshold Effects in Strategy carries the threat of a coercive response, is interpreted, and it is precisely here that the effectiveness of a deterrent or of a warning is at stake.

In his Laws, Plato notes that what inspires the law is above all the ob- servation of certain behavioral mechanisms that the legislator does not invent but uses as levers. Extrapolating this idea, we could say that any coercive doctrine is in part inspired by observed and repeated standard behaviors over time, which is a matter of dissuading by relying on certain recurrences observed in human motivations — such as the will to survive.

How decisive is it that an order or a defense include explicit language to reinforce the guarantee that it will be followed? Plato believes that every law requires a prelude for this purpose: "That which precedes it [the law], and which is destined to produce per- suasion in people's minds, does indeed produce it, and acts as a prelude; for all this preamble in which the legislator tries to persuade, seems to me to have no other purpose than to dispose the person to whom the law is addressed to receive The explanation of the prescription "if this type of action is committed, then we enter into a repertoire of responses that leads us to change our scale" can, however, be two-edged: it can procure the benefit of soliciting an understanding of the law and reinforcing its acceptance-- and perhaps its application.

But in other respects, it could also compromise its force, since the didactic act of explaining it could be read as the law's failure to impose itself on everyone. From the perspective of usage in order to single out inappropriate behavior or to discourage it, this may produce an ambivalent response, depending on the representation that the actors have of the threshold: if it does not appear clearly, it can be inoperative unrecognized, it cannot play the role of a signal , but if it is too explicit, its demonstrative force can be undermined firstly by the very nature of an explanation that can be interpreted as a justification, potentially taken to be a sign of fragility in the conviction of the one who could be led to apply what it states in the event of crossing the threshold.

How can the definition of thresholds be the basis of a strategy marked by a graduation of coercive response? We have suggested part of the answer by underlining the immemorial symbolism of the threshold from an anthropological point of view and by recalling that human development is itself characterized by the passage of one phase to another by crossing critical thresholds, which predisposes the human psyche to adopt models of thought based on the The Effects of Air Power gradual nature of the associated causes and effects.

In this sense, examina- tion of typical reasoning processes engaged in by utilitarians may enable us to go a bit further in this analysis. From Reality to Utilitarian Modeling of Behavior When the goal is to get actors to refrain from choosing certain behaviors on their own-- for example, actions such as aggression-- this can be achieved by referring any potential opponent to a utilitarian calculation.

A utilita- rian calculation relies on weighing the consequences of a potential action, in terms of pleasure or suffering, in order to decide what is worth doing or not. This is why these philosophers, led by J. Bentham, are often called upon when describing the thought mechanisms on which strategies of warning, discouragement and dissuasion are based - and bet on.

Bentham suggests reflection on what can make a punishment effective. In order for the penalties to be approved by all the actors, they must seem appropriate to them, which means that they must be conceived according to a hierarchy that is in line with the scale of values commonly shared by all of the actors. Then, writes Bentham, "one will be struck above all by their appropriateness, by their analogy with offences, by this scale of graduation in which an aggravated offence will lead to an aggravated punishment, an extenuating circumstance to a mitigated punishment" The graduation of penalties has several virtues for the utilitarian: by following a logic of pro- portionality, it makes them more acceptable — that is, fairer — which gives rise to the hope that those to whom it is addressed will play the game, that is, become sufficiently predictable by refraining from crossing the thresholds that mark the most serious levels of aggression.

The first influence of graded sentencing is referral. Or, in other words, on publicity—which in the etymo- logical sense means "making public"-- that the logic of dissuasion begins; since the strength of the response is a function of the level of unacceptabi- lity, it induces a calculation that postulates that the desire for survival is the absolute norm of behavior, and that one will refrain from going outside the framework of accepted practices if one's physical integrity is at stake.

A good understanding of the risk involved is essential here for everyone to make this calculation in the intended fashion, so as to ensure satisfactory stability in society. From the perspective of utilitarian thinking about punishment, the existence of scales and the definition of thresholds e. If this does not discourage all criminal activity, it can at least limit the extent of it by making it clear to the perpetrators of certain crimes that it is in their interest not to escalate their case to a level that would lead to the death penalty, for example.

Threshold Effects in Strategy A deterrence strategy based on a resolutely graduated coercive response, however, has important specific features in comparison with the utilitarian model of penalties imposed on behalf of the state against individuals who break the rules. Thus, in the latter case, the moral calculation the one by which the actor asks himself how advantageous it is to act in one way or another is essentially unilateral, whereas in the case of nuclear17 deterrence, the public power knows that reaching the threshold of use of the weapon will, on the one hand, not only test the credibility of its determination, but also, on the other hand, it must assume that the taboo of the use of the weapon will be broken, which, beyond an inter-state conflict, could lead the world into an even more uncertain era where strategic calculation would be even more difficult.

This induces another specificity of the level of nuclear response: the potential adversary may think that the deliberately vague defi- nition of a nuclear threshold still leaves him the possibility of engaging in a double-edged "bluff", as E.

Laval explains: "from to , the nuclear weapon was considered the ultimate asymmetric tool, capable of denying war. This conflict opened the door to a field that would later be qualified as "infra-nuclear", i. The nuclear threshold thus not only marks the attainment of a stage at which the use of the weapon becomes possible; it also represents a limit beyond which the actors tip over into a universe where the points of refe- rence disappear, making any calculation eminently dangerous.

The existence of this threshold reinforces the asymmetric perception of nuclear weapons, and thus of the exceptionally serious nature of what justifies their use. It is this threshold that makes it possible to bind the destinies of adversaries: an unacceptable attack on the vital interests of one will cause unacceptable da- mage to the other. Its danger makes it essential to understand the intentions and to read the messages that the adversaries address in their dialectic.

The thresholds allowing warnings are thus undoubtedly linked to the upper limit of the use of nuclear weapons, and vice versa. Application to the Strategic Dialectic The publication of H. Kahn's book in was a very interesting exer- cise in strategic foresight to understand how the existence of thresholds can influence the way actors think.

Resolutely opposed to the theory of "massive retaliation", which in the s foresaw an atomic response to any Soviet ag- gression, Kahn considered that the "all-or-nothing" strategy was not so dis- suasive after all, since it put its promoters in the position of having to resort very quickly to a nuclear strike, without which they would lose credibility. Understood here in a general way, without reference to a particular national model. Kahn, De l'escalade. The Effects of Air Power It also made them responsible for an irreparable rise to extremes, although not necessarily proportionate to the gravity of the attack that would have provoked it Kahn imagined using his scientific and technical knowledge to design an autonomous system of graduated responses to any form of Soviet aggression, which would replace massive retaliation.

This potential "Doomsday Machine" was to be based on a repertoire of 44 rungs of the ladder that were supposed to reflect the different degrees of intensity of international crises and the responses considered proportionate to each of these stages, from that of the "low-intensity political crisis" rung 1 to the "nuclear spasm", or "mutually assured destruction" rung Each threshold determined by Kahn has specific strategic properties, as well as several warning options. Thus, the existence of thresholds makes it possible to envisage a form of reversibility, albeit theoretical, even once the nuclear taboo has been broken by the use of the weapon.

The MacNamara doctrine illustrates this way of using multiple thresholds in deterrence, a model which is of course not adopted in the French approach. The strategic interest of the existence of thresholds is, as we can see, multi- faceted. They make it possible to delimit two different "playgrounds", where other rules and other calculations apply, underlining an evolution in the rela- tionship between the players: "below the threshold", writes A.

Glucksmann in The Discourse of War 21 "a classic zero-sum game is played, above the threshold a non-calculable game of survival. Thus, each threshold expresses the maximum 'decomposition' of the global use of violence" and entails "the risk of going to zero", and thus of finding oneself deprived of the essential reference points for thinking about one's action in terms of survival. Moreo- ver, the transgression of one party provides an objective basis for justifying the perception of aggression, while at the same time making it possible to qualify the level thereof.

Even if one may fear that when this transgression occurs, it may open the way to other, more serious actions, the fact that the levels encourage the visualization of an escalation lets us hope that we also perceive the interest in stopping a conflict on the 4th rung of the scale will not inevitably lead to the 40th rung — which would be compromised Considered one of the most eminent American futurists, Herman Kahn was also a mathematician, economist and strategist.

Founder of the Hudson Institute , an organization specialized in futurology, he worked from to at the Rand Corporation, a private research organization linked to the U. Air Force. As a strategist, he originated the doctrine of graduated response and devised the "forty-four steps" of a possible world war. His book On Thermonuclear War develops the idea that the difference between nuclear and conventional warfare is not in kind, but only in degree.

Threshold Effects in Strategy by the absence of a threshold or even the existence of a single threshold, as in massive retaliation, where the act triggers an ineluctable ascent to the extremes. Nobody, in fact, except the international game, in other words the strategic chessboard itself. The metaphor of the game of chess emphasizes that beyond the shared rule, each player knows that he must reconstruct the strategy of the other, according to which he can adapt or re-evaluate his own strategy.

But while it is in the interest of the players to maintain the mystery around their respective strategies in the game of chess, the very existence of the deterrent force and the strategic option that it represents obliges in itself to be vigilant of everything that could trigger it. This is why the question of doctrine of use is the subject of such in-depth analysis between national actors, and it also explains the importance of the threshold thesis, in a rela- tionship so particular that the actors are both sovereign—i.

This notion of threshold permeates Man entirely and is manifested in individual and collective ways of thinking. In strategy, thresholds facilitate the signaling of intentions and tend to have a stabilizing effect, participating in the control of escalation. It therefore ap- pears useful to better understand their characteristics in order to produce one's own strategy. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Game Revolution. Retrieved July 27, PC Gamer. Future plc. Archived from the original on Rock, Paper, Shotgun.

Wargamer Limited. Retrieved July 28, Network N. Blue's News. July 26, Video Gamer. Gamasutra Press release. UBM Tech. Retrieved May 1, CBS Interactive. Retrieved June 2, Eugen Systems. Direct Action High Treason.

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Bagration binary options reviews This can be both direct if the action immedia- Throughout history, warfare has continued to plague civilisations as one of the most complex human endeavours to conduct. As appealing and pragmatic as it may seem,3 such characterisation re- mains lacking. This consumption itself is also influenced by demographic, socio-economic, environmental, and ideological factors, and so forth. Game Revolution.
Bagration binary options reviews An identical process, by consequence, should also be applicable in the case of micro-TSAs. To put it mildly, not everyone bagration binary options reviews agree with his views. French political and military authorities immediately saw the advantages that utilising the Tegel site could bring to their image. Questions thus remain as to what is to be studied and the issues that are to be addressed. The MacNamara doctrine illustrates this way of using multiple thresholds in deterrence, a model which is of course not adopted in the French approach.
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