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Lohaus-AEI 2016

Special Operations Forces in the Gray Zone: An Operational Framework for Employing Special Operations Forces in the Space Between War and Peace

Lohaus

sof gray zone

@techreport{lohaus:aei-2016,
  author={Phillip Lohaus},
  title={Special Operations Forces in the Gray Zone: An
         Operational Framework for Employing Special
         Operations Forces in the Space Between War and Peace},
  institution={American Enterprise Institute},
  year={2016},
  month={December},
}

"Special operations forces (SOF), along with elements of the intelligence community, are uniquely adapted to operating in this ambiguous zone. Tradecraft and operational approaches tied to irregular warfare, unconventional warfare, information warfare, and building partner capacity are both indigenous to SOF and important tools to addressing gray zone challenges, and they should certainly be enhanced."

"America’s enemies already know that they cannot compete with its conventional military power; they have no other choice but to observe and react to their stronger adversary. Rather than trying to level the conventional playing field, a winning strategy for them is to leverage asymmetric strengths that minimize the relevance of America’s superior military."

"Further, as the SOF community is asked to take on an increasing share of the nation’s security responsibilities, its ability to operate in innovative ways and with agility, precision, subtlety, and speed—the very qualities needed to address gray zone challenges—may diminish if it is not used carefully and adroitly."

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