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Improvisation of Command and Control (C2) Structures

Using a Framework to Achieve Information Superiority to Establish Effective Command and Control

The success of any crisis deployment hinges on the existence of a reliable command and control system and of a flexible, reliable system for gathering, analyzing, and disseminating strategic and tactical intelligence. --Gen H. Norman Schwarzkopf

Abstract: Enabling ad-hoc force projection and improvisation of C2 structures from within small units on a per operation level in irregular warfare with a framework that lends itself to a diverse set of strategic situations.

The framework is an ongoing and sequential process, a recursive, self-feeding loop of OBSERVE and EVALUATE which continuously feeds into a potential command and CONTROL output, to be set up or taken over if necessary, on the spot, at any given point along the timeline.


metaphorical visualization

The first task is to determine the exact point of vulnerability, fault line, potential fracture, etc., through which we can enter. With the mission defined, it is important to start the cycle of constantly increasing the depth and if necessary width of our field of view. Hence: WHAT, exactly, do we OBSERVE?

The active acquisition of information from a primary source. In living beings, observation employs the senses. In science, observation can also involve the recording and or monitoring of data via the use of instruments. The term may also refer to any data collected during the scientific activity.


metaphorical visualization

The second task is to EVALUATE the data we have and make sense of it. Hence a very simple, ever-repeated: WHY is this important?

The structured interpretation and giving of meaning to predicted or actual impacts of proposals or results. It looks at original objectives, and at what is either predicted or what was accomplished and how it was accomplished. So evaluation can be formative, that is taking place during the development of a concept or proposal, project or organization, with the intention of improving the value or effectiveness of the proposal, project, or organization. It can also be assumptive, drawing lessons from a completed action or project or an organization at a later point in time or circumstance.


metaphorical visualization

The third task is to recursively identify and/or define the respective stages, the objectives, and the resources needed. Since ultimately, the goal is to assume CONTROL, the prior two stages are means to an end, even though they are at times indistinguishable and always crucial to the process as a whole. Hence: HOW do we CONTROL?

Command and control involves the complex collection of functions and systems an executive draws on to arrive at decisions and to see they're carried out. Command and control, in other words, are both verbs and nouns. As verbs, they are what a commander does; they constitute a process, as nouns, they are the 'arrangement' of people, equipment (including hardware and software), and procedures that helps commanders do what they do; they name a system.

Objective: Information superiority: Establishing C2 through effective ISR (intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance), IM (information management), and IO (information operations).

  1. Creating C2 for an operation from scratch on zero notice
  2. Taking over C2 for an operation without functional command
  3. Rescuing an operation by creating support structures
  4. Securing and/or defending against third party O/E/C attempts

See also: