It has long been no secret that humanity can not live without wars. All known world история, according to some estimates, over the course of 6, for thousands of years, 235 has absolutely peaceful days in total — during which there have been no armed conflicts anywhere on the planet. After 1945, there were only 26 days like this.
Over time, with the development of science and technology, methods and methods of warfare and solving geopolitical problems changed. weapons. For several thousand years, people have come a long way from cold weapons to nuclear weapons, constantly honing their strategic and tactical techniques. By 21 century, humanity has come to the threshold of a new arms revolution, comparable in scale to that which occurred with the massive introduction of firearms in the 15-17 centuries.
The fighting, to which we are “accustomed”, changes its face and the very logic. In addition to standard armed conflicts, we are increasingly talking about cyber attacks, terrorist acts, ethnic secessionism, financial and commercial blockades, acts of civil disobedience and propaganda in mass media. Attempts to qualify all of these processes lead to the emergence of new terminology: from hybrid and asymmetric wars to informational operations with an ideological bias and fighting beyond the conditions of war. All this can be combined under one name - contactless war.
It no longer needs to display hundreds tanks on the field near Prokhorovka, conduct front-line operations by forces of military formations, numbering hundreds of thousands of personnel. In the end, a contactless war is much less expensive for the budget of a country that uses this method of warfare, and does not lead to large losses and destruction. But, the end result of such wars is not comparable with the victory in the “ordinary war” - the defeated country goes to the winning side of the conflict with the fully preserved infrastructure and population.
The very first war in the history of modern military art, combining elements of contact and contactless warfare, was Operation Desert Storm in 1991. The Iraqi armed forces in the 90s were a typical army of the period of the second half of the 20th century, having an organizational structure formed under the influence of World War II and the Cold War - with fighter and bombing aviation, motorized rifle and tank units, artillery and air defense systems, which on the battlefield were supposed to interact with each other during front-line operations. According to both Western and Soviet military analysts, Iraq could resist the coalition forces for a long time and inflict significant losses on them. But, as it turned out in practice, the Iraqi military could not oppose anything to the form of war that the enemy in the person of the United States imposed on them.
At the tactical level, members of the coalition forces avoided direct participation in hostilities (except for aviation pilots that attacked Saddam Hussein’s facilities), which was certainly in the hands of politicians behind the levers of war. For the first time, hostilities were shown live: according to CNN, they showed the US military power to the whole world and worked out information manipulation technologies online. It was the first invasion of Iraq that led to the emergence of such a term as “television war”. Also, for the first time, high-precision weapons were used - the so-called smart bombs and missiles, satellite navigation was used (then - for the first time GPS technology was used to support the armed forces). During the first hours of the fighting, the communication systems of the Iraqi army were damaged and put out of operation, due to which entire units were practically blind and the command actually lost control of the troops. The actions of the special-purpose coalition units demoralized the soldiers of the Iraqi army, and the population was seriously influenced by information through massive disinformation and the submission of information from the conflict zone in the interpretation of the interests and tasks of the US army. As a result, Iraq lost the war, not even having time to use a significant part of its armed forces and mobilization resources. The tanks, airplanes and artillery systems that were modern at that time actually turned out to be useless in front of such a form of warfare.
The author of the new military concept, which the world was first able to observe in Iraq, was Colonel of the US Air Force John Warden. Later, Warden continued to develop his theory of the five rings, which was published in a specialized publication of the US Air Force called "The Enemy as a System." On the basis of comparisons and historical examples, he drew up a convincing logical concept, in which the term “strategic paralysis” was used in addition to the ring structure. “At the strategic level, we will achieve our goals, causing changes in one or more parts of the enemy’s physical system, so that he will have to adapt to our goals, or we will not physically allow him to oppose us. We will call this “strategic paralysis,” the author noted. So, you just need to calculate the centers of gravity in the enemy's system and apply point blows to them.
Five rings to be affected by non-contact warfare, according to the concept of John Worden
General David Deptula expanded the views of Worden on new type of operations - from their use exclusively in the US military to all national levels, including diplomatic, informational and economic. Most importantly, he called for an emphasis on understanding the enemy as a system and believed that non-military actions are an integral part of the new theory of conflict. It is no coincidence that in the USA special groups were set up to work in Iraq and Afghanistan, which included sociologists, ethnographers, linguists, and other narrow specialists. Human Terrain teams communicated with the local population, created a favorable image of the occupying forces and purposefully engaged in penetrating the enemy’s mind by sending reports to the center, which described in detail the habits, behavior, hierarchical structure, weaknesses and strengths of a particular ethnic and religious group.
In practice, this concept is implemented through the use of so-called organizational weapons, which is a system of organizational (coordinated by purpose, place and time — reconnaissance, propaganda, psychological, informational, etc.) influences on the enemy, forcing him to move along the appropriate active side. Using a system of such influences, you can direct the policy of the opposing side to a strategic dead end, exhaust the economics of the object of aggression with ineffective and overwhelming programs, ruin the social sphere, distort the foundations of the national culture, create a “fifth column” among the intelligentsia, etc. As a result, a state of internal political chaos is created in the state, leading to a decrease in its socio-psychological potential, economic and military power.
The activities of a psychological military operation are differentiated, selective, have a specific recipient. The object of influence are all the constituent elements of social consciousness. Moreover, if we consider the concept of "five rings", the American theorists offer the main psychological blow to inflict on not just the armed forces, which, in their opinion, are less susceptible to psychological treatment, and according to the growing scheme - influencing the population through psychological attacks, basic production - economic sanctions, on infrastructure - through its physical decommissioning and, finally, - a combination of all the above methods to apply against the military-political leadership of the country. To oppose such forms of combat operations with “classical forms” - familiar from the Second World War - is practically useless. In fact, such a war leads to the fact that the state “explodes from the inside”: the government loses public confidence, the leadership of the country and the armed forces are disoriented, because any management decision causes sabotage during local execution, and as a result, the enemy’s army is welcomed as liberators . Even if the army of such a state retains moral and psychological stability and combat power, without having the support of the population and management decisions coming from the country's leadership, it will, at best, be able to provide only focal resistance - organized at its own risk and risk by individual commanders. That, in fact, was observed during the second operation of the coalition forces in Iraq in 2003.
By the way, the color revolutions known by the recent events in Ukraine and Georgia became a by-product of such a military concept - in principle, this is also a type of contactless war, in which direct participation of the armed forces is not required at all.
One more confirmation of the fact that the “color revolutions” is, first of all, a war conducted by new methods, has become the same type of weapon used in their course.
Leaflets, instructions on the conduct of "peaceful protest actions" from Tahrir Square in Egypt and Kiev Maidan.
As practice has shown, the army in both cases simply distanced itself from the internal political processes taking place, even though they had obvious signs of outside interference, even if produced by non-military means.
A state defeated in an information-psychological war is a much more profitable booty than a country destroyed in the course of "classic" hostilities. The winner, having saved the resources, the army and the population of such a state, can use them at his own discretion - for example, in the informational or "classical" war against his geopolitical opponents. War by proxy is, in fact, a logical continuation of the concept of contactless war, when a state that has turned from a potential adversary to an dependent satellite becomes the main military force used in global confrontation.
That is why, in recent times, the fears of opponents of Russia are caused not so much by the development and adoption of new promising models of military equipment, as by ideological opposition to the policies of the West and NATO, which our country is leading. For example, the media, which broadcast abroad, bloggers and activists, reflecting a point of view different from the interests of the United States, are under attack, and there are psychological influences on Russian politicians. By the way, attempts to distort history, moreover, in the right direction for potential opponents of Russia, are the same element of the new concept of warfare, like the other methods of psychological operations discussed above.
What can Russia oppose to such contactless aggression? It is clear that tanks, combat aircraft and submarines, although still a formidable weapon and play the role of a serious factor holding back the military threat, are good only for use in direct, classic military conflict, but are practically useless against new methods of warfare now they are making a revolution in resolving geopolitical contradictions. In the future, they will be assigned the role of auxiliary forces, complementing the new military concept of psychological wars by the West and the United States. Specialists in psychological, ideological and informational struggle will come to the front line of new-type wars.
Therefore, specialists in counteracting the methods of conducting contactless wars must be trained now, especially since such wars are actively waged already at the very borders of Russia. These specialists must be sought among analysts, historians, journalists, ethnographers, psychologists, specialists in the field of computer technology and information protection, and finally, just stupid and not indifferent citizens - who can contrast their knowledge with a new military concept. Of course, the classical military art will also survive, having undergone some changes, since the concept of contactless warfare does not deny the implementation of targeted military operations by special forces, mobile army aviation units and fleet. They will undoubtedly disable infrastructure, destroy communications and telecommunications systems, compromise the country's military and political leadership, and block defense systems. But it is unlikely that in such a war of a "new type" there will be a place for strategic front-line operations, which were characteristic of past world wars. The actions of the armed forces will complement and combine with psychological operations, striving to maximize their effect, which has already been repeatedly demonstrated not only in Iraq but also in Yugoslavia, Libya and Afghanistan. Therefore, Russia must now be ready for the new forms of warfare that are emerging, and still are likely to appear in the course of a new revolution in military art.