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Thursday, December 9, 2010

What does the departure of Rep. Ike Skelton mean for IO/SC/PA progress and cooperation?

What does the departure of Rep. Ike Skelton mean for IO/SC/PA progress and cooperation?

      In late 2005, I recall seeing a memo from Rep Ike Skelton that address his grave concern about IO/influence bleeding into public affairs and their audiences. It came at a time where USG and DOD PA seemed to be in fierce resistance to the employment/integration of IO, and were marking territory and reinforcing it lobbying. Granted, the cooperation and integration has progressed nicely since then, driven in part by trying SC work (a term without baggage or subjugation) and by mid-grade IO/PA/PSYOP officers and practitioners who were more focused on using all tools/means necessary to succeed in Iraq and Afghanistan and not be distracted by politics of lane defining/restricting. I think the proven success showed we all can work together without permanent subjugation, loss of clout/staff prestige, which appears to have softened the resistance from senior USG and service PAO.
        Personally I think former ASDPA Torie Clark did more than Rep. Skelton to retard and beat down the efforts to have anyone other than PA involved in strategic or region specific information projection (my one conspiracy theory-PA tanked OSI). Efforts we now know are necessary, crucial and possible. But what has Rep. Skelton's role been the last 5 years in all of this? Has his influence/involvement waned, or is he an obstacle that will depart in January?

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