Network Centric Warfare, Command, and the Nature of War Australian Army Major Christophe Smith Author
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Military theorists such as David Alberts contend that information technologies will allow for wider and more rapid sharing of information. In order to take advantage of the emerging possibilities presented by information technologies the theorists recommend changes to the structure of information age military organizations and changes to the methods for command and control of military forces. Some of their ideas have implications for the traditional function of command. This monograph asks how contemporary military theorists account for the essence of command in information age theories of warfare. Case studies of Frederick the Great, Napoleon Bonaparte, and Dwight D. Eisenhower demonstrate that the essence of command is the dynamic relationship among nine imperatives. These imperatives include context, action, nerve, presentation, design, intellect, expertise, coherence, and the individual. The monograph contends that the emerging information age theories of warfare are flawed because they are based on a definition of command that does not account for these imperatives. The monograph serves as a warning to those who might seek to optimize an army for network centric warfare.


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