What’s the private sector demand/niche for an out-of-work IO contractor extraordinaire?
Forward thinking Defense contracting companies should be mapping a strategy on the commercial/private industry application of warrior IO skills/experience. As one war winds down, and limited and possible dwindling funding for the remaining smaller war, the lucrative defense industry may soon see far less contracts in high demand areas of IO and intel. Don’t want to survive by being lucky, survive by being prescient. When the supplemental wave crashes, will you end up on the beach beached or on another breaker?
How do we bring our understanding of the information battlespace to the civilian government sector? DOS is an obvious choice, but what about DHS? DEA? FBI? Can the FBI use an IO planner to fix a fugitive, or make him move? Leaflets aside, why can’t we use the same IA collaboration developed to find AAM, but instead of it residing in DOD, it resides in the IA, supported by civ (not military) or contracted planners. If IO can work with intel and ops in the hunt for AAM, why can’t it be done domestically as well as internationally? The principles of enabling or exploiting operation and information success, synchronizing to support FBI or DEA operation objectives/intelligence collection requirements (do we want suspect to move/communicate, not move/communicate, communicate). Very likely that pieces are being done, but think back 10, 7 or even 4 years ago to when commander’s/staffs thought they were already doing IO because they had a Public Affairs officer or a TPD in direct support. The eaches don’t essentially make the whole, and the IO practitioners and the commanders and staffs they support have learned this well in the last five years. So if there is practical application in the government sector, consider the target audience that has to buy into this to be where our military leadership at various levels was 8-10 years ago.
The payoff is government agencies incorporating the IO practitioner capability for operational effectiveness. Since there are no civilian schools or feeder systems to create such a skillset, at least initially it may be contracted to quickly bring in those civilians and military who have developed said fundamentals, skills and intuition to support ops/intel.