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  • OODA Loops or COIN? Which would you rather have for breakfast?

    by coldwarrior ( 114 Comments › )
    Filed under Afghanistan, History, Open thread, Political Correctness at April 29th, 2010 - 8:00 am

    Back in the uncomplicated, Non-PC day, we fought wars using simple models/flow charts like this for basic guidance and direction in both strategy and tactics. The first flow chart is Col John Boyd’s OODA Loop (see GULF War 1 as an example of implementation), Boyd is the West with von Clausewitz meets the Eastern Sun Tzu in a simple and lethal package: OBSERVE-ORIENT-DECIDE-ACT! Stay inside of your opponent’s decision loops and make him react to you. Repeat as necessary.  Simple, right?

    Now, somehow, we went from the very concise and easy to understand OODA Loop to this:

    Its coloured charts, graphs and bullet-points are supposed to make the most incomprehensible data crystal clear.

    But even the sharpest military minds in American were left baffled by this PowerPoint slide, a mind-boggling attempt to explain the situation in Afghanistan.

    ‘When we understand that slide, we’ll have won the war,’ General Stanley McChrystal, the US and NATO force commander, remarked wryly when confronted by the sprawling spaghetti diagram in a briefing.

    There is growing concern about the insiduous spread of PowerPoint which has come to dominate the lives of many junior officers.

    Dubbed the PowerPoint Rangers, they spend hours slaving away on slides to illustrate every Afghan scenario.

    ANY QUESTIONS? I thought not. The above two diagrams should provide plenty of insight.

    This is an open thread as well…

    (please see this post for some background on COIN)



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