Berto Jongman: Russian Nonlinear War (“Gerasimov Doctrine”) — While US in Stuck in One Size Fits All Big War

02 China, 04 Inter-State Conflict, 06 Russia, Advanced Cyber/IO, Cultural Intelligence, Government, IO Deeds of War, Military, Officers Call, Peace Intelligence

berto smallGrading Gerasimov: Evaluating Russian Nonlinear War Through Modern Chinese Doctrine

Victor R. Morris in Small Wars Journal, 17 September 2015

Unrestricted war is a war that surpasses all boundaries and restrictions. It takes nonmilitary forms and military forms and creates a war on many fronts. It is the war of the future.

-Colonel Qiao Liang and Colonel Wang Xiangsui, Unrestricted War, Beijing, 1998

“Gerasimov Doctrine” contains particular similarities to the Chinese doctrine outlined in Unrestricted Warfare published in 1999, and historical roots in previous Russian doctrine. Both strategies involve using proxies, or surrogates, to not only exploit vulnerabilities in low intensity conflict, but to also prepare for future operations, which may involve high intensity conflict. Other strategies involve applying both low and high tech asymmetrical means, and also engaging in several forms of war. For example, Unrestricted Warfare describes 13 forms of “total war” and methods to consciously mix “cocktails” on the battlefield, or to employ combinations of forms of warfare in order to find innovative and effective approaches.

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Robert David Steele Vivas
Robert David Steele Vivas

ROBERT STEELE: Kudos on a very fine article, particularly the illumination of the connection between the Chinese approach to unrestricted warfare without boundaries, and the Russian implementation of the same idea, what the Americans and NATO are now calling hybrid warfare.

I am so very sad to say that I conceptualized all of this in 1989 for General Al Gray's article, Global Intelligence Challenges of the 1990's as published in the American Intelligence Journal.

In particular I distinguished between the Conventional Threat and the Emerging Threat as shown below, and called for “peaceful preventive measures” as a major aspect of integrated national security strategy.

Conventional Threat
Static Orders of Battle
Rules of Engagement (ROE)
Known Doctrine
Strategic Warning
Known Intelligence Assets

Emerging Threat
Dynamic or Random
No constraints (ROE)
Unknown doctrine
No established I&W net
Unlimited 5th column

Typically then, and still today, no one wanted to listen. Conventional war is profitable for the few, peace is profitable for the many, and intelligence is irrelevant to how Washington makes decisions. Our military is a spending machine, nothing more. Viet-Nam and Iraq were about “using up” our military so we would have to buy it again. Until we can establish the primacy of intelligence (evidence-based decision support to strategy, policy, acquisition, and operations) and restore integrity to counterintelligence (enabling the FBI to nail the known financial, religious, and ideological traitors in senior positions across the board) we will continue to be a corrupt ineffective nation unable to assure the security and prosperity of our public.

See Especially (Steele at US Army Strategic Studies Institute):


Threats Strategy and Force Structure, an Alternative Paradigm for 21st Century Security,” in Steven Metz (ed.) Revising the Two MTW Force Shaping Paradigm (Strategic Studies Institute, 2001)

Presidential Leadership and National Security Policymaking“, in Douglas T. Stuart (ed.), Organizing for National Security (Strategic Studies Institute, 2000), pp. 245-282.

TAKEDOWN: Targets, Tools, and Technocracy,” in Lloyd J. Matthews (ed.), Challenging the United States Symmetrically and Asymmetrically: Can America be Defeated? (Strategic Studies Institute, 1998), pp. 117-141.

Information Peacekeeping: The Purest Form of War”, in Lloyd J. Matthews (ed.), Challenging the United States Symmetrically and Asymmetrically: Can America be Defeated? (Strategic Studies Institute, 1998), pp. 143-171.


Human Intelligence (HUMINT): All Humans, All Minds, All the Time (Strategic Studies Institute, May 2010) [NOTE: Cleared by both DoD and CIA prior to publication.]

Information Operations: Putting the I Back Into DIME (Strategic Studies Institute, February 2006)

The New Craft of Intelligence: Achieving Asymmetric Advantage in the face of Nontraditional Threats (Strategic Studies Institute, February 2002)

See Also:

Selected Books

THE OPEN SOURCE EVERYTHING MANFESTO: Transparency, Truth & Trust (Berkeley, CA: North Atlantic/Evolver Editions, 5 June 2012)

INTELLIGENCE FOR EARTH: Clarity, Diversity, Integrity, & Sustainability (Oakton, VA: Earth Intelligence Network, 2010)

COLLECTIVE INTELLIGENCE: Creating a Prosperous World at Peace (Oakton, VA: Earth Intelligence Network, 2008). Edited by Robert Steele and Mark Tovey, senior editor not listed to honor junior.

THE SMART NATION ACT: Public Intelligence in the Public Interest (Oakton, VA: Open Source Solutions International Press, 2006) Foreword by Congressman Rob Simmons (R-CT-02)

INFORMATION OPERATIONS: All Information, All Languages, All the Time (Oakton, VA: Open Source Solutions International Press, 2006)

PEACEKEEPING INTELLIGENCE: Emerging Concepts for the Future (Oakton, VA: Open Source Solutions International Press, 2003) Edited by Ben de Jong, Cees Wiebes, and Robert Steele. (Foreword by Dame Pauline Neville-Jones, former Chair, Joint Intelligence Committee of the United Kingdom)

THE NEW CRAFT OF INTELLIGENCE: Personal, Public, & Political (Oakton, VA: Open Source Solutions International Press, 2002) (Foreword by Senator Pat Roberts (R-KS), Chairman, Senate Select Committee on Intelligence)

ON INTELLIGENCE: Spies and Secrecy in an Open World (Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association Press, 2000; Oakton, VA: Open Source Solutions International Press, 2002) (Foreword by Senator David Boren (D-OK), former Chairman, Senate Select Committee on Intelligence)

Selected Articles

The National Military Strategy: Dishonest Platitudes,” CounterPunch, 6 July 2015

APPLIED COLLECTIVE INTELLIGENCE: Human-Centric Holistic Analytics, True Cost Economics, and Open Everything,” Spanda Journal, Special Issue on Collective Intelligence, January 2015

On Defense Intelligence: Seven Strikes,” CounterPunch, 2 July 2014

Healing the Americas with an Open Source Agency: Can Chile Lead the Americas Toward Open Source Everything?, “ AAIntelligencia Magazine (30 March 2013)

U.S. Naval Seapower in the 21st Century: 450-Ship Navy, <24 Hours to Anywhere, Peace From the Sea.” Phi Beta Iota, July 2012

Intelligence for the President—AND Everyone Else,” CounterPunch, Weekend Edition, February 27 – 1 March 2009

Intelligence Reform: More Needs to Be DoneParameters (Summer 2005)

Peacekeeping Intelligence & Information Peacekeeping,” International Journal of Intelligence & Counterintelligence (Summer 2005)

Information Peacekeeping and the Future of Intelligence,” International Journal of Intelligence and Counterintelligence (Summer 2004)

The New Craft of Intelligence: Making the Most of Open Private Sector Knowledge,” TIME Magazine (Web), 2002

Muddy Waters, Rusting Buckets: A Skeptical Assessment of U.S. Naval Effectiveness in the 21st Century” (accepted for publication by the U.S. Naval Institute Proceedings, withdrawn and published at 17 November 1999).

The Asymmetric Threat: Listening to the Debate,” Joint Forces Quarterly No. 20 (National Defense University, Autumn/Winter 98-99), pp. 78-84.

First to Fight but Not Fighting Smart: A Skeptical Assessment of U.S. Marine Corps Effectiveness in the 21st Century“, Marine Corps Gazette (May 1999)

C4I: The New Linchpin,” Proceedings (U.S. Naval Institute, July 1992)

Applying the ‘New Paradigm’: How to Avoid Strategic Intelligence Failures in the Future,” American Intelligence Journal (Autumn 1991)

Intelligence Support fo Expeditionary Planners,” Marine Corps Gazette (September 1991)

Intelligence in the 1990's: Recasting National Security in a Changing World,” American Intelligence Journal (Summer/Fall 1990)

Selected Chapters

Foreword” in Stephen E. Arnold, Cyber-OSINT: Next Generation Information Access (Harrod’s Creek, KY: Arnold IT, February 2015).
“Peace from Above: Envisioning the Future of UN Air Power,” in A. Walter Dorn (ed.), Air Power in UN Operations: Wings for Peace (Farnham, UK: Ashgate Publishing, 2014), Chapter 17, pp. 297-316.

The Evolving Craft of Intelligence,” in Robert Dover, Michael Goodman, and Claudia Hillebrand (eds.). Routledge Companion to Intelligence Studies (Oxford, UK: Routledge, 22 August 2013)

The Ultimate Hack Re-Inventing Intelligence to Re-Engineer Earth,” in Uffe Kock Wiil (ed.), Counter-Terrorism and Open Source Intelligence (Heidelberg, DE: Springer, 2011)

Open Source Intelligence (OSINT)” in Loch Johnson (ed.), Strategic Intelligence (Volume 2: Collection, Santa Barbara, CA: Praeger, 2007), pp. 95-122. This is the strategic overview in relation to all aspects of secret intelligence.

The Importance of Open Source Intelligence to the Military,” in Loch K. Johnson and James J. Wirtz (eds.), Strategic Intelligence: Windows into a Secret World (Cary, NC: Roxbury, 2004), pp. 112-119.

Information Peacekeeping & The Future of Intelligence: The United Nations, Smart Mobs, & the Seven Tribes,” in Ben de Jong, Wies Platje, and Robert Steele (eds.), PEACEKEEPING INTELLIGENCE: Emerging Concepts for the Future (Oakton, VA: Open Source Solutions International Press, 2003), pp. 201-225

Peacekeeping Intelligence: Leadership Digest 1.0,” in Ben de Jong, Wies Platje, and Robert Steele (eds.), PEACEKEEPING INTELLIGENCE: Emerging Concepts for the Future (Oakton, VA: Open Source Solutions International Press, 2003), pp. 389-435

INFORMATION PEACEKEEPING: The Purest Form of War,” in Douglas Dearth and Alan Campen, CYBERWAR: Myths, Mysteries, and Realities (Armed Forces and Electronics Association Press, 1998).

Creating a Smart Nation: Information Strategy, Virtual Intelligence, and Information Warfare,” in Alan D. Campen, Douglas H. Dearth, and R. Thomas Goodden (eds.), CYBERWAR: Security, Strategy, and Conflict in the Information Age (AFCEA, 1996)

Recent Studies Inclusive of Different Analytic Models

Beyond Data Monitoring – Achieving the Sustainability Development Goals Through Intelligence (Decision-Support) Integrating Holistic Analytics, True Cost Economics, and Open Source Everything (UN White Paper, Oakton, VA: Earth Intelligence Network, 14 October 2014)

1976-2013: Analytic, Methodological, & Technical Models, Phi Beta Iota Public Intelligence Blog, 30 March 2013

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