FROM PSYOP TO MINDWAR PDF

An Approach to Personal Expression The question is not what you look at, but what you see You were born to yourself. You were given to yourself as a gift. Should you not be grateful? Valley Commander - with - Major Michael A.

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Valley Commander - with - Major Michael A. Aquino Lt. Army had yet to emerge from the disappointment and frustration of the Vietnam War. He intended it not as an article for publication, but simply as a "talking paper" to stimulate dialogue. In this it was quite successful, judging by the extensive and lively letters he received concerning it over the next several months. That should have been the end of MindWar: a minor "staff study" which had done its modest job. With the arising of the Internet in the s, however, MindWar received an entirely unexpected - and somewhat comic - resurrection.

Allusions to it gradually proliferated, with its "sinister" title quickly winning it the most lurid, conspiracy-theory reputation. The rumor mill soon had it transformed into an Orwellian blueprint for Manchurian Candidate mind control and world domination. My own image as an occult personality added fuel to the wildfire: MindWar was now touted by the lunatic fringe as conclusive proof that the Pentagon was awash in Black Magic and Devil-worship.

Now that this absurdly comic opera has at least somewhat subsided, I thought that it might be interesting to make a complete and accurate copy of the paper available, together with an Introduction and some historical-hindsight annotations to place it in reasonable context. After all it did - and perhaps still does - have something worthwhile to say.

Within the U. The principal strategic decisions are made in consideration of traditional political and military interests and goals. Only then is PSYOP invited to the table, to help achieve already-agreed-upon missions more efficiently. MindWar reverses this sequence. Psychological means for achieving victory - essentially through convincing the enemy that he really wants to bring his national policies into harmony with ours - are fashioned in support of basic political goals.

The use of "ordinary" military force bombs, bullets, etc. After seeing the recent film Star Wars, we played with a modification of its name as a futuristic replacement for the somewhat bland Army designation "Psychological Operations". An avowedly science-fictional treatment of MindWar, complete with a caricature of Sutter at its helm, appears in my Star Wars story The Dark Side, available at www.

Essentially you overwhelm your enemy with argument. You seize control of all of the means by which his government and populace process information to make up their minds, and you adjust it so that those minds are made up as you desire. Everyone is happy, no one gets hurt or killed, and nothing is destroyed.

Ordinary warfare, on the other hand, is characterized by its lack of reason. After such a war there is lasting misery, hate, and suffering. The only loser in MindWar are the war profiteers: companies and corporations which grow fat on orders for helicopters, tanks, guns, munitions, etc. While in the s I had no reason to think that this paper had had any official effect upon U. PSYOP doctrine within or beyond the Army, it was with some fascination that I saw specific of its prescriptions applied during the first Gulf War, and recently even more obviously during the invasion of Iraq.

The impact of even these minor techniques of MindWar was remarkable. A psychological climate of inexorable U. Somewhat less positively, the failure of MindWar in this instance to be guided by only the most rigorous principles of truth and ethics has just as inexorably led to a substantial post- victory evaporation of that euphoric climate.

Invoking as it does the most intense emotions and commitments of its audiences, it must deliver the goods as they are judged by the target audiences. If the ethical values of those audiences are not respected - if MindWar is used only in the service of ulterior motives and objectives - the resulting "disintoxication"can be socially shattering. Particularly if MindWar is actually to be employed as a feature of U.

Psychological Operations: The Ethical Dimension is also available for download at www. These new footnotes are identified by "[MA]" at their beginning. Navy is glad someone took the idea seriously enough to pursue it.

Army already possesses an operational weapons systems designed to do what LTC Alexander would like ESP to do - except that this weapons system uses existing communications media.

It seeks to map the minds of neutral and enemy individuals and then to change them in accordance with U. It does this on a wide scale, embracing military units, regions, nations, and blocs. Does PSYOP work, or is it a merely a cosmetic with which field commanders would rather not be bothered? At the time MACV estimated that the elimination of that same number of troops in combat would of cost us 6, dead.

Our national will to victory was attacked more effectively than we attacked that of the North Vietnamese and Viet Cong, and perception of this fact encouraged the enemy to hang on until the United States finally broke and ran for home. It failed not because its principles were unsound, but rather because it was outmatched by the PSYOP of the enemy. The lesson is not to ignore our own PSYOP capability, but rather to change it and strengthen it so that it can do precisely that kind of thing to our enemy in the next war.

Better hardware is nice, but by itself it will change nothing if we do not win the war for the mind. The first thing it is necessary to overcome is a view of PSYOP that limits it to routine, predictable, over-obvious, and hence marginally effective "leaflet and loudspeaker" applications.

Battlefield devices of this sort have their place, but it should be that of a accessory to the main effort. That main effort cannot begin at the company or division level; it must originate at the national level. It both causes and is affected by physical combat, but it is a type of war which is fought on a far more subtle basis as well - in the minds of the national populations involved.

So let us begin with a simple name change. We shall rid ourselves of the self- conscious, almost "embarrassed" concept of "psychological operations".

In its place we shall create Mind War. The term is harsh and fear-inspiring, and so it should be: It is a term of attack and victory - not one of the rationalization and coaxing and conciliation. The enemy may be offended by it; that is quite all right as long as he is defeated by it. A definition is offered: MindWar is the deliberate, aggressive convincing of all participants in a war that we will win that war.

It is deliberate in that it is planned, systematic, and comprehensive effort involving all levels of activity from the strategic to the tactical. It is aggressive because opinions and attitudes must be actively changed from those antagonistic to us to those supportive of us if we are to achieve victory.

We will not win if we content ourselves with countering opinions and attitudes instilled by enemy governments. We must reach the people before they resolve to support their armies, and we must reach those armies before our combat troops ever see them on battlefields. Compare this definition with that of psychological warfare as first offered by General William Donovan of the OSS in his World War II-era "Basic Estimate of Psychological Warfare": Psychological warfare is the coordination and use of all means, including moral and physical, by which the end is attained - other than those of recognized military operations, but including the psychological exploitation of the result of those recognized military actions - which tend to destroy the will of the enemy to achieve victory and to damage his political or economic capacity to do so; which tend to deprive the enemy of the support, assistance, or sympathy of his allies or associates or of neutrals, or to prevent his acquisition of such support, assistance, or sympathy; or which tend to create, maintain, or increase the will to victory of our own people and allies and to acquire, maintain, or to increase the support, assistance, and sympathy of neutrals.

War Report of the OSS. Carlisle Barracks: U. Army War College. Moscow, June , pages Again and again efforts to forge this weapon into its most effective configuration were frustrated by leaders who could not or should not see that wars are fought and won or lost not on battlefields but in the minds of men. As Colonel Paddock so aptly concludes: In a real sense, the manner in which psychological and unconventional warfare evolved from until their union as a formal Army capability in suggests a theme that runs throughout the history of special warfare: the story of a hesitant and reluctant Army attempting to cope with concepts and organizations of an unconventional nature.

It is certainly not considered a precondition to command decisions. Thus PSYOP cannot predetermine the political or psychological effectiveness of a given military action. It can only be used to point that action in the best possible colors as it is taken. MindWar cannot be so relegated. It is, in fact, the strategy to which tactical warfare must conform if it is to achieve maximum effectiveness.

The MindWar scenario must be preeminent in the mind of the commander and must be the principal factor in his every field decision. Otherwise he sacrifices measures which actually contribute to winning the war to measures of immediate, tangible satisfaction.

MindWar teams must offer technical expertise to the commander from the onset of the planning process, and at all levels down to that of the battalion.

Such teams cannot be composed - as they are now - of branch-immaterial officers and NCOs who know simply the basics of tactical propaganda operations. They must be composed of full-time experts who strive to translate the strategy of national MindWar into tactical goals maximize the effective winning of the war and minimize loss of life. Such MindWar teams will win commanders respect only if they can deliver on their promises. Such efforts must continue, but they are properly seen as reinforcement of the main MindWar effort.

We must attack that will before it is thus locked in place. We must instill in it a predisposition to inevitable defeat. Strategic MindWar must begin the moment war is considered to be inevitable. It is in their homes and their communities that they are most vulnerable to MindWar. Was the United States defeated in the jungles of Vietnam, or was it defeated in the streets of American cities? In its strategic context, MindWar must reach out to friends, enemies, and neutrals alike across the globe - neither through primitive "battlefield" leaflets and loudspeakers of PSYOP nor through the weak, imprecise, and narrow effort of psychotronics 11 - but through the media possessed by the United States which have the capabilities to reach virtually all people on the face of the Earth.

These media are, of course, the electronic media - television and radio. State of the art developments in satellite communication, video recording techniques, and laser and optical transmission of broadcasts make possible a penetration of the minds of the world such as would have been inconceivable just a few years ago. Like the sword Excalibur, we have but to reach out and seize this tool; and it can transform the world for us if we have the courage and the integrity to enhance civilization with it.

If we do not accept Excalibur, then we relinquish our ability to inspire foreign cultures with our morality. If they then desire moralities unsatisfactory to us, we have no choice but to fight them on a more brutish level. MindWar must target all participants if it is to be effective. It must not only weaken the enemy; it must strengthen the United States.

It strengthens the United States by denying enemy propaganda access to our people, and by explaining and emphasizing to our people the rationale for our national interest in a specific war. The Propaganda Ministry of Goebbels must not be a part of the American way of life. Quite right, and so it must be axiomatic of MindWar that it always speaks the truth.

MindWar thus involves the stated promise of the truth that the United States has resolved to make real if it is not already so. MindWar is not new. Consider the atomic attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Surrender followed; a long and costly ground invasion was averted.

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Paul E. The paper was titled "From PSYOP to MindWar: The Psychology of Victory," and it presented a Nietzschean scheme for waging perpetual psychological warfare against friend and enemy populations alike, and even against the American people. The "MindWar" paper was provoked by an article by Lt. John Alexander, which appeared in the December edition of Military Review, advocating the introduction of ESP extra-sensory perception , "tele-pathetic behavior modification," para-psychology, psychokinesis "mind over matter" , remote viewing, out of body experiences, and other New Age and occult practices into U.

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From PSYOP to MindWar – The Psychology of Victory (1980)

Army had yet to emerge from the disappointment and frustration of the Vietnam War. In this it was quite successful, judging by the extensive and lively letters he received concerning it over the next several months. The rumor mill soon had it transformed into an Orwellian blueprint for Manchurian Candidate mind control and world domination. My own image as an occult personality added fuel to the wildfire: MindWar was now touted by the lunatic fringe as conclusive proof that the Pentagon was awash in Black Magic and Devil-worship. Within the U.

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Martial Law, Jade Helmsters dig selves a deeper hole. In final act of a tragi-comedic play, hype-full, hope-less, hysteria-full Helmsters in Right, Left, Alt. When we need you the most, Michael Aquino, where are you? At NSA, you say. But not necessarily in ways that they think. Obliquely connected to it, maybe.

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