Revolution in Military Affairs

REVOLUTIONS IN MILITARY AFFAIRS

HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVE AND FUTURE PROSPECTS

POTENTIAL TECHNOLOGIES FOR FUTURE RMA

CHAPTER I

INTRODUCTION

"A Revolution in Military Affairs (RMA) is a major change in the nature of warfare brought about by the innovative application of new technologies which, combined with dramatic changes in military doctrine and operational and organisational concepts, fundamentally alters the character and conduct of military operations." (1)

1. The military concept of Revolution in Military Affairs (RMA) occurs when a combination of technological, organisational, social, doctrinal and political-economic changes take place in conjunction, and affect the way militaries plan, equip, train, and ultimately wage war.

2. Although some analysts of this subject have identified as many as ten previous RMAs, the current term evolved from a Soviet concept, military technical revolution. Three basic conceptions -- and a number of permutations -- for the current RMA are identified. The first focuses primarily upon changes in the nation state and the role of an organized military in using force -- it highlights the political, social, and economic factors at play worldwide which might lead to the need for completely different types of military force and organizations to apply that force in the future. The second conception, and that most commonly assigned the term RMA, highlights the evolution of weapons, military organizations, and operational concepts among advanced powers -- it focuses on the changes made possible by advancing technology. The third conception is that a true revolution in military affairs is unlikely, but rather there will be continuing evolution in equipment, organizations, and tactics to adjust to changes in technology and the international environment.

3. Current Perspectives of RMA(3). A difficulty arises in understanding the current debate over the RMA because some participants use the term as referring to the revolutionary technology itself that is driving change, while others use the term as referring to revolutionary adaptations by military organizations that may be necessary to deal with the changes in technology or the geopolitical environment, and still others use the term to refer to the revolutionary impact of geopolitical or technological change on the outcome of military conflicts -- regardless of the nature of the particular technology or the reaction of the participants to the technological change. Members of each group use the term "revolution", but in reference to different phenomena. The difference in terms of reference leads to different suggested alternatives.

(a) When reviewing the gamut of perspectives, three fundamental variations of a Revolution in Military Affairs come to the forefront. The first perspective focuses primarily upon changes in the nation state and the role of an organised military in using force. This approach highlights the political, social, and economic factors worldwide, which might require a completely different type of military and organisational structure to apply force in the future. Author's such as RAND's Carl H. Builder and Major Ralph Peters, purport the basic viewpoint on the decline of the nation state, the nature of the emerging international order, and the different types of forces needed in the near-future.

(b) The second perspective—most commonly assigned the term RMA—highlights the evolution of weapons, weapons technology, information technology, and military organisation and doctrine among advanced powers. This "System of Systems" perspective on RMA has been ardently supported by Admiral William Owens, Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, identifies three overlapping areas for force assets. These are 1) intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, 2) command, control, communications and intelligence processing, and 3) precision force.

(c) Finally, the third concept is that a "true" revolution in military affairs has not yet occurred or is unlikely to; however there has been a continuing evolution in equipment, organisations, and tactics to adjust to changes in technology and the international order. Authors such as Michael O'Hanlon and Frederick Kagan, point to the fact much of the technology and weapons systems ascribed to the contemporary RMA were in development long before 1991. In additional, several critics point out that a "revolution" within the military ranks might carry detrimental consequences, produce severe economic strain, and ultimately prove counterproductive. Such authors tend to profess a much more gradual "evolution" in military affairs, as opposed a rapid revolution.

CHAPTER II

METHODOLOGY OF THE STUDY

“A revolution in military affairs (RMA) occurs when a nation's military seizes an opportunity to transform its strategy, military doctrine, training, education, organisation, equipment, operations and tactics to achieve decisive military results in fundamentally new ways.”

William Cohen, former Defence Secretary of the USA.

1. It is a well known fact that the current RMA is driven by the ‘Information Technology' towards achieving network centricity in the battlefield. However it is in no way complete as yet and is an ongoing process of evolution leading to the revolutions in military affairs. The future holds great prospects for IT and one cannot say that the Information Technology is at its saturation. There are numerous upcoming fields of science and technology which are in the development stage and have potential military applications besides civil use. I intend to analyse few of these emerging technologies in order to arrive at a logical conclusion regarding a potential technology which can replace ongoing IT driven RMA and create its own impact towards a new RMA.

Statement of Problem

2. I intend to analyse some of the emerging technologies in order to arrive at a logical conclusion regarding a potential technology which can replace ongoing IT driven RMA and create its own impact towards a new RMA.

Justification of the Study

3. Looking at the current RMA, it is difficult to describe one single factor that has created it. Is it the revolutionary technology that is driving the change, is it the revolutionary adaptation by the military organisations or it is the impact of geopolitical and technological changes that is the constituent of the RMA? There are different opinions. It is said that dynamic global requirements, shifting priorities and a world in flux are bound to create such discontinuities. The second view is that the evolving technology, weapons, military organisations and doctrine are creating this change together.This is the dominant view.However, a major group of analysts consider that a true RMA is unlikely but rather there will be continuous evolution in equipment, organisations and tactics to adjust to changes in technology and the international environment. We assume that all these three conceptions are valid and that it is their interplay which has created the revolution in military affairs.

4. New tools and processes of waging war like information warfare, network-centric warfare (NCW), integrated Command and Control (C4ISR), system of systems, all powered by information technology, have led to the revolution in military affairs (RMA). The countries of the world are now on the brink of a major revolution on how they (will) conduct national security affairs. The technological advancement in the field of communication relates to the information processing and the information processing as related to military affairs includes “Collection, Analysis, Communication, synthesis and dissemination of information” according to an expert. All the information gathered in the real time frame can be processed through computers which today is capable of processing three trillion functions per second. In military affairs the important thing is the application of processing/analysis for discrimination of information. Information technology has greatly enhanced and facilitated the command and control and reduced the time and space dimension to an extent that it is new real time information gathering, processing and dissemination. This has been possible due to the enormous storage and processing capability which has drastically cut down rummaging. This gives birth to C4ISR (Command, Control, Communication, Computer, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance). The application of C4ISR is at much higher level. It connects the strategic level with tactical level in real time. Thus we can also call it “Revolution in Strategic Affairs”.

Statement of Objectives

5. Borrowing from the Soviets, American military analysts have been discussing the concept of “ military technical revolutions” under the RMA label. Indeed, these analysts have made the RMA a hot topic by observing and describing the state- of -the - art technology that now offers military planners a dazzling array of advanced weapons systems, communication equipment, computer tools and more. In combination, such advanced systems may provide an order of magnitude increase in combat capability. Noting the Gulf War performance of stealth aircraft , precise long range conventional munitions and advanced sensor targeting and information processing technology , many observers suggest that major improvements in combat effectiveness are impending as new technologies are integrated in to the military forces.

6. For American Analysts, a military revolution occurs not as the result of deployment of a single new weapon or technology, but when a set of technologies and associated operational concepts transform the nature and character of warfare and military organizations and their personnel are able to deploy and exploit this set of technologies. Such revolutions are marked not only by changes in force structure and the way armies, navies and air forces fight but also in the way they are organized and trained. During such revolutions military professionals are themselves are often uncertain about new operational concepts and forms of military organizations, a phenomenon that is as true today as it was at the end of the nineteenth century.

7. How may one recognize incipient military revolution? How do military professionals know they are living through such a revolution ? Are the components of military revolution clear enough to allow an unequivocal identification by those experiencing it? Imagination alone is insufficient to analyse such complex phenomena, and military men of great reputation, have failed to recognize the nature of revolution they themselves are experiencing. Even the Soviets acknowledged that military revolutions usually are identified most clearly with hindsight once critical technologies and tactics have been developed or used(4).

Scope

1. With the revolutions in Information Technology, the art of warfare has entered yet another realm that of information warfare. The key proponents of the current information-based RMA state that a combination of high-tech sensors, robust information systems, focused intelligence, stealth technologies, advanced C4, and precision weapons will enable the commander to "see and understand everything on a battlefield, and if you see the battlefield, you will win the war." (5) However this Information technology driven revolution of military affairs is here to stay but what next ? Are there any such emerging technologies which can either supplement or replace the Information technology to create a new impact in the field of warfare to dawn an era of a fresh RMA.

Hypothesis

2. The current or ongoing RMA is that driven by IT towards achieving greater degree of situational awareness as well as network centricity in today's battlefield. However in the era of ever growing technological research and inventions, there are few such emerging technologies which have an application in the military fields, though yet to be exploited to the full potential. These technologies are listed below :-

(a) Nanotechnology

(b) High tech weapons.

(c) Aerospace technology.

(d) Stealth technology.

(e) Robotics.

3. This list is growing day by day as new technologies are emerging and opening the gates to its military applications. Is there any possibility of a new RMA with advent of these technologies to supplement or replace the current information technology driven RMA to change the way war are fought.

Limitations of the Research

3. This particular subject is based on the future prospects of the concept of RMA and is yet much debated over worldwide due to the various schools of thought on the subject of various military analysts . An in depth study of the subject will require much more dedicated time and the expertise and guidance of the scholars on the subject. However since the subject deals with new technologies a research material can be obtained from the various sources such as books, articles and internet. Though the concept is more applicable to the western armies which are using technologies optimally to fight the future wars, most of the research material has been obtained from the articles and books in the foreign media and internet. However all efforts are being made to critically analyse topic and arrive at a logical conclusion.

Organisation of the Dissertation

4. The dissertation has been structured in a manner so as to build up the events leading to current information technology driven RMA , thereafter analyse various emerging technologies with a potential to supplement or create RMA on its own or in conjunction with information technology.

5. How has the present RMA come about and what is its historical background? The importance and relevance of the present RMA brought about by the IT revolution is recognized and acknowledged by the US Army Joint Vision 2020 which dwells upon the vision of the US Armed Forces twenty years hence. Thus the relevance of the present-day IT in tomorrow's warfare cannot be overemphasized. The IT revolution has had a deep-rooted impact on the present RMA. Various facets of these implications have been dealt in detail in Chapter IV.

6. On analyzing the various new technologies, in Chapter V, I shall endeavor to identify a potential technology / technologies which can create a future RMA to include the likely fields of the military applications for this technology.

Conclusion

7. The revolution created by Information Technology is the greatest ever revolution in the history of military affairs. However from here the way ahead is still open to the future technologies to meet the demands of military applications in future conflicts. With the advent of nanotechnology on the horizon for miniaturization of the technological gadgets, it is possible to supplement the current IT based RMA and create a new revolution in the military affairs.

CHAPTER III

CONCEPT OF RMA THROUGH THE AGES

1. The current term, "Revolution in Military Affairs" has evolved from an earlier term -- military technical revolution -- used by Soviet military theorists. (2) In the early 1970s the Soviets had identified two periods of fundamental military change in the 20th Century: one driven by the emergence of aircraft, motor vehicles and chemical warfare in World War I, and the second driven by the development of nuclear weapons, missiles and computers in World War II. The next "military-technical revolution" the Soviets thought, would involve advances in microelectronics, sensors, precision-guidance, automated control systems, and directed energy. By 1984, the Chief of the Soviet General Staff was expressing his concern that the emergence of "automated reconnaissance and strike complexes," including new control systems and very accurate long-range precision weapons, would bring the destructive potential of conventional weapons closer to that of weapons of mass destruction. The success of allied forces in Operation Desert Storm convinced the Soviets that the integration of control, communications, electronic combat, and delivery of conventional fires had been realized for the first time.

2. Based upon an assessment of the outcomes of what have been defined as RMAs in the past, a revolution in military affairs takes place when one of the participants in a conflict incorporates new technology, organization, and doctrine to the extent that victory is attained in the immediate instance, but more importantly, that any other actors who might wish to deal with that participant or that activity must match, or counter the new combination of technology, organization, and doctrine in order to prevail. The accomplishments of the victor become the necessary foundation for any future military activities in that area of conflict. The emphasis on a specific area of conflict is important because it is possible that technologies or organizations proposed as elements of a current RMA -- such as the so-called sensor-to-shooter connection -- could be countered in a particular conflict by other elements, such as nuclear weapons.

3. Most true revolutions in military affairs have only been recognized after they have taken place. Except, perhaps, for nuclear weapons, the reality and power of the several revolutions in military affairs which will be briefly discussed below was recognized later, but not during their gestation period. One reason for this is that even in the relatively distant past, warfare itself has been in a constant state of flux. Most of this change was evolutionary, and as such was relatively easily countered. The effects of true revolutions in military affairs went beyond these changes and created a new environment. It should be noted that, from the perspective of the participants in the process, what was seen as evolutionary by the victorious side could have been seen as revolutionary by the losing side -- and by history.

Past Revolutions

4. There are several interpretations of the exact number and constituent elements of earlier revolutions in military affairs. One analyst counts as many as ten RMAs since the fourteenth century. (6) The Infantry Revolution and the Artillery Revolution took place during the Hundred Years War. In the first of these, infantry displaced the dominant role of heavy cavalry on the battlefield; in the second, advances in technology led to the development of effective cannons and siege warfare which could quickly degrade the formerly strong defenses of cities.

5. The outcome of the Battle of Crecy -- which marked the end of cavalry supremacy -- provides an example of the overwhelming dominance that becomes evident from the completion of an RMA. In that battle the French lost 1,542 knights and lords, and suffered over 10,000 casualties among crossbowmen and other support troops. The victorious English, relying on disciplined formations of infantry with unprecedented use of longbowmen, lost two knights, one squire, forty other men-at-arms and archers, and "a few dozen Welsh." (7)

6. Other revolutions in military affairs took place at sea where the advent of sail powered warships and cannon changed the nature of Naval Warfare. A Fortress Revolution in the sixteenth resulted from the development of fortifications better able to withstand the siege artillery of the day. The development of muskets and tactics to overcome their weaknesses and exploit their power led to another revolution. The large squares of pikemen(8) and archers which had earlier overcome mounted cavalry, now became targets for artillery and musket fire. The Napoleonic Revolution took place when the French were able to standardize and improve their artillery, greatly increase the size of their armies and greatly improve the organization and command of their military formations.

7. The development of railroads and telegraphs, and the introduction of rifling for muskets and artillery created another Land Warfare Revolution in the 19th century. The American Civil War was fought by exploiting these developments. A second Naval Revolution took place at the end of the century as the rifled cannon, steel ships, and steam power changed the face of warfare at sea. The end of this period saw the introduction of the submarine and torpedo. The culmination of the tactics, organizations and technology of the two 19th century revolutions was reached in the early stages of World War I with static trench warfare on land and submarine warfare at sea.

8. The changes in technology and organization which had taken place by the end of World War I set the stage for the Revolutions in Mechanization, Aviation and Information which took place in the interwar period. These revolutions led to the great military innovations of World War II: Blitzkrieg by the German Army, carrier aviation by Japan and the United States, amphibious warfare by the United States, and strategic bombing by Great Britain and the United States. In the context of the discussion today, it should be noted that all of the elements of the later revolution -- motor vehicles and tanks, airplanes and radios -- were present in World War I. It was the combination of their technical advancement in the 1920s and 1930s, along with new doctrine and organizations that created revolutions. Finally the Nuclear Revolution took place as a result of the coupling of nuclear weapons with intercontinental bombers and ballistic missiles.

9. Because a defining characteristic of the last half of the twentieth century has been very rapid, accelerating, unavoidable, technological change, one of the major elements needed for a revolution in military affairs -- technological change -- is now always present. At the same time, rapid societal change and organizational adaptations by military forces are taking place. The presence of these phenomena has led to continuing discussions as to whether there currently exist, or will exist in the near future, the elements needed to create another revolution in military affairs.

Advanced Computer Technologies

10. The continuing, rapid, advances in this category are driving all of the other elements in the RMA. The increases in computer speed and reliability, combined with new or more sensitive types of sensors, has made possible dramatic increases in weapons accuracy and lethality, intelligence gathering and dissemination, and communications. The ability to model or simulate processes, activities, or objects has grown exponentially in the recent past. The desire to take advantage of the increasing sophistication of modeling and simulation activities has been one of the major elements in the plans of the U.S. military services to adapt to the future.

11. A war involving a participant possessing the elements of this vision of an RMA would take place at a very rapid pace, involve synoptic battlefield awareness, the use of very lethal precision guided weapons, control of the entire electromagnetic spectrum, and be highly integrated among all the components and services. This type of warfare would be most effective against "conventional" but less technologically advanced powers, and less effective against unsophisticated opponents or guerrillas.

12. Some of the consequences of accepting this technology-based view of the RMA would be the obverse of what Builder proposes. Thus, the focus of the Department of Defense would be on relatively small, highly sophisticated, technologically advanced weapons and organizations. The word relatively is emphasized because the size of the force would be a consequence of the size of the threat. It is possible to conceptualize a significant, large, technologically competitive adversary in 20 years or less that would require a large, technologically competent U.S. force.

13. Because a central element of this perception of the RMA is computer technology -- which is now highly market-driven -- it is unlikely that the pace of change in this area is going to slow. One consequence of this rapid pace could be much shorter production runs for major weapons systems because the systems are likely to become obsolete much sooner. This rapid pace also gives rise to the present tension between those who wish to retain capabilities for some indefinite future and those who believe that the current budgetary environment forces the relinquishment of existing -- not necessarily obsolete -- capabilities in order to afford future capabilities. Another consequence of the rapid pace of technology is likely to be a continuation of the search for "silver bullets." A notable characteristic of some members of this group is the claim that a single technology -- usually the one they are proposing -- will create an RMA by itself.

CHAPTER IV

INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY DRIVEN RMA

1. In the 20th Century, warfare changes were represented by three major military developments, in that chronological order: the first was mechanized warfare, submarine warfare and air warfare; the second was nuclear weapons, ballistic missiles and EW; the third was cybernetics & information technology. As my analysis would subsequently attempt to bring out, it is this third military development which is at the heart of 'RMA' in the sense this word is formally understood today.

2. The use of information in warfare is perhaps as old as warfare itself. Development and spread of information technology (IT) witnessed over the last decade or so has resulted in an enhanced importance to information in military activities. Information dominance enjoyed by the coalition forces during the Gulf War of 1991has been cited as one of the most important factors that led to the Iraqi defeat. At a tactical level, information advantage is seen to provide conventional forces an effective ‘force multiplier' ;while at the strategic level access to relevant information could turn out to be centre of gravity( at least for the more technologically intensive force) The imperative in a future war thus may not be the destruction of the enemy forces, but perhaps to paralyse the enemy by removing his ability to control his forces effectively. To that extent, information control would evolve as a valuable adjunct to land control, air control and sea control. Thus amongst multitude of means of dominating an enemy during war, Information operations have emerged as a vital and important tool. Operation Desert storm marked the beginning of the first microchip war, a battle of high-tech weaponry that was frighteningly accurate. It was a watershed in the history of combat, a transition between the ages of terrifying carpet bombing raids to the impersonal wizardry of computer age.

3. There is no denying the fact that Information Operations enabled the coalition forces to win operation Desert Storm with a stunningly low casualty rate . This points to a revolutionary advances in military capability achieved by the United states with the help of new generation military support systems- the so called “force multipliers”. Computers and modern electronics formed the backbone of these new generation systems that changed the character of war. It contributed immensely to the dominance of the coalition forces in the collection , analysis, dissemination and application of information and knowledge.

Information Operations

4. This new military strategy had its genesis during the 1970s when it was developed as part f what has been called the “ Offset strategy” (9) . the strategy was envisaged as a counter to the perceived threat of an armoured assault by the Warsaw Pact forces in Central Europe where the NATO forces were disadvantaged both in terms of personnel and armoured equipment by a three to one ratio. The NATO forces therefore leveraged the use of technology as a force multiplier by building better weapon systems using current technology, and supporting these systems on the battlefield with newly developed equipment that multiplied their combat effectiveness. Thus a lethal combination of cutting age technology and state of the art equipment gave a coalition forces a significant competitive advantage over their opposing counterparts.

5. the remarkable success story of the coalition forces in the Gulf War was chiefly built on five critical components, viz. command, control, communications, intelligence(C3I) and precision guidance(10) . During Desert storm the military commanders had an excellent situational awareness owing to massive deployment of C3I components. Intelligence sensors, navigation systems and communication systems gave the coalition battlefield commanders the exact location of friendly forces, opposing forces and own troops. The United States effectively used its various space satellite systems to generate data for maps, locate military units, identify military systems and pinpoint the location of command and control installations of the Iraqi forces. In order to maintain the information superiority of the coalition forces over the Iraqis, a tremendous array of electronic warfare systems were brought on the battlefield by the United States. An important aspect of information operations illustrated during Desert Storm was the immense capability displayed by a new generation technological equipments be it a recce , AD C and R or the precision attack. Thus the Gulf War was undoubtedly a new chapter in warfare propelled by the post- industrial advances in the information technology for processing and application of vast information. Although the “peek in to the future” accorded at that time was blurred and imperfect, it was clear that a military revolution was underway, which could compressively change the way future wars would be fought, resolved and deterred.

Advanced Computer Technologies

8. The continuing, rapid, advances in this category are driving all of the other elements in the RMA. The increases in computer speed and reliability, combined with new or more sensitive types of sensors, has made possible dramatic increases in weapons accuracy and lethality, intelligence gathering and dissemination, and communications. The ability to model or simulate processes, activities, or objects has grown exponentially in the recent past. The desire to take advantage of the increasing sophistication of modeling and simulation activities has been one of the major elements in the plans of the U.S. military services to adapt to the future.

9. A war involving a participant possessing the elements of this vision of an RMA would take place at a very rapid pace, involve synoptic battlefield awareness, the use of very lethal precision guided weapons, control of the entire electromagnetic spectrum, and be highly integrated among all the components and services. This type of warfare would be most effective against "conventional" but less technologically advanced powers, and less effective against unsophisticated opponents or guerrillas.

10. Some of the consequences of accepting this technology-based view of the RMA would be the obverse of what Builder proposes. Thus, the focus of the Department of Defense would be on relatively small, highly sophisticated, technologically advanced weapons and organizations. The word relatively is emphasized because the size of the force would be a consequence of the size of the threat. It is possible to conceptualize a significant, large, technologically competitive adversary in 20 years or less that would require a large, technologically competent U.S. force.

11. Because a central element of this perception of the RMA is computer technology -- which is now highly market-driven -- it is unlikely that the pace of change in this area is going to slow. One consequence of this rapid pace could be much shorter production runs for major weapons systems because the systems are likely to become obsolete much sooner. This rapid pace also gives rise to the present tension between those who wish to retain capabilities for some indefinite future and those who believe that the current budgetary environment forces the relinquishment of existing -- not necessarily obsolete -- capabilities in order to afford future capabilities. Another consequence of the rapid pace of technology is likely to be a continuation of the search for "silver bullets." A notable characteristic of some members of this group is the claim that a single technology -- usually the one they are proposing -- will create an RMA by itself.

CHAPTER V

OVERVIEW OF POTENTIAL TECHNOLOGIES FOR FUTURE RMA

“What occurs when the application of new technologies into a significant number of military systems with innovative operational concepts and organizational adaptation in a way that fundamentally alters the character and conduct of conflict”. (11)

Andrew F Krepinevich

1. Technology-driven changes in military operations are not recent phenomena. Indeed, technological developments have been bringing about profound changes in the nature of warfare since the dawn of history. (12) If there is indeed to be a contemporary revolution in military affairs, a great number of new technologies, warfighting concepts, and organizational innovations are still required to make it possible. There are some objections to RMA by technology-oriented methodology, claiming that revolutions in military affairs are less accidents of invention than the purposeful creations of military establishments. Although these are largely right on the latter point, technology has been an essential ingredient in most RMAs. For example, at least one major development in weaponry contributed centrally to each of the ten major military revolutions since 1300, as identified by Andrew Krepinevich. While technology usually forms the basis of a RMA, the desire to have a capability can produce a doctrine which then drives the RMA's technological aspect. For example, LTC Earl Ellis of the USMC described the basic concept of amphibious warfare in 1920/21, years before the technologies needed to implement a doctrine based on those concepts existed. The Marines subsequently developed many of the technologies in order to be able to apply the doctrine. However, such instances of doctrine driving technological development are rarer than those in which a new technology creates the conditions which call for the formulation of new doctrine and organisational concepts. (11)

2. The current revolution in military affairs (RMA) is based primarily on the impact made by advancing information, sensor, computing, and telecommunications technologies on the modern military. The concept is defined in the US as :-

“A Revolution in Military Affairs (RMA) occurs when a nation's military seizes an opportunity to transform its strategy, military doctrine, training, education, organization, equipment, operations, and tactics to achieve decisive military results in fundamentally new ways.”

The interplay of advanced technology and new operational concepts occurs in two distinct ways. The first is "requirements pull," where a new critical operational task emerges requiring the development of new technology to accomplish new missions. An example of this is ballistic missile defense (BMD), where the proliferation of ballistic missiles and their associated technologies created the requirement for theater missile defense of forward forces and potentially national ballistic missile defense for the U.S. homeland. The second is "technology push," where a promising new technology spurs the development of a new weapon system or operational concept and enables new, perhaps previously un-thought of, missions. An example of this is the utilization of the global positioning system to navigate precision munitions. It is the combination of requirements pull and technology push that drives the current RMA by maturing advanced technologies and enabling new military missions.

3. Technology is constantly advancing—particularly in a world that is systematically organized to conduct scientific and engineering research on a large scale. The armed forces of a country, such as the United States, that depends heavily on technology is continuously and constantly innovating and developing new technologies in order to stay ahead. Military forces, a decade into the twenty-first century currently possess "dominant battlefield knowledge," "full-dimensional protection," "dominant maneuver," and "precision strike" ability from long distances. But what do these terms really mean? The understanding of the RMA hypothesis, is that they accept the following specific technological premises:

(a) Improvements in computers and electronics will make possible major advances in weapons and warfare—most notably in areas such as information processing and information networks but also in communications, robotics, advanced munitions, and other technologies.

(b) Sensors will become radically more capable, in effect making the battlefield "transparent."

(c) Land vehicles, ships, rockets, and aircraft will become drastically lighter, more fuel efficient, faster, and more stealthy, making combat forces far more rapidly deployable and lethal once deployed.

(d) New types of weaponry—such as space weapons, directed energy beams, and advanced biological agents—will be developed and widely deployed.

(e) Advent of nanotechnology in to the defence applications will miniaturise the systems and the concepts of employment of the forces as systems

If properly exploited and integrated into military organizations, tactics, and concepts of operations, these technical trends can soon add up to a revolution in military affairs that will constitute the greatest advances in warfare since the advent of blitzkrieg and aircraft carriers in the 1930s and nuclear weapons in the 1940s.

High Tech Weapons of the Future

4. Directed energy weapons (DEW) This is a technology area that has been neglected in current RMA. The technologies associated with DEWs have been maturing, while political willingness and expenditures capability of advanced nations are making deployment of DEW systems in the near future a realistic possibility. The use of DEWs on the modern battlefield would contribute to the current RMA. DEWs will be able to provide defense against short-range artillery shells and theater/intercontinental missiles, as well as anti-satellite capabilities that will contribute to a space control strategy.

5. Precision Firepower /Smart Bombs In the 21st-century Information Age, the preference for firepower delivered by air and supported from space has reached new heights. Weapons are now so accurate that we describe them as precision- guided munitions (PGMs), “smart,” or even “brilliant” bombs. Unguided projectiles are merely “dumb” bombs. The United States, using intelligence and precision weapons, can destroy almost anything, anywhere, any time. Theorists have advanced a number of schools of thought concerning what this capability means to military strategy. Although these concepts differ on particular issues, they stem from a common belief that precision weapons offer a new way of accomplishing military strategy. One should not deny the importance of precision firepower and related Information-Age warfighting concepts. They are indeed fundamentally changing the tactical and operational levels of war. The relationship between fire and maneuver and airpower and landpower is constantly evolving because of changes in society and technology. The revolution in military affairs being driven by the Information Age is yet another episode in this long process.

Robotic Warfare.

5. Abstractly speaking the new unmanned vehicle robotic technologies, both UGVs and UAVs currently under development will change the future warfare. Today there are discussions on the ethical implications of this changing paradigm along with the new strategies, surveillance tactics and future innovation that will be implemented. Being considered are also political and media related issues. The game of hide and seek, electronic attacks and robots Vs humans or robots Vs robots are projected into the future in these dialogues as military men, philosophers and diplomats alike contemplate the realities on the road. Thefuture cometh in the modern battles pace- those participating must. Adapt or Die. When we discuss robots in warfare it includes Unmanned vehicles ground or aerial such as UAV, UCAV, UGV, UUV. These are controlled either by telerobotics or autonomously. These robots are the future of the warfare. The US military is not alone in such tools of war. Robots in human conflicts are at home in many nations military. Countries like India, Russia, China, Iran, UK, Germany, France, Italy, Israel and Australia all have UAV programs. Of course so does Al Qaeda, Hezbollah, Syria and many of the other international terrorist groups.

Aerospace Technologies

6. A very common perception about Aerospace technologies is that those technologies that deal with aviation and space. The post-modern period, however, can be said to have begun in the last decade of the 20th century when a critical level of maturity was attained in aviation, space, communication, and information technologies. The third wave is one dominated by knowledge-based technology. The roots of third wave technology can be traced to the four technologies of aviation, space, communications and computers. Aviation technologies matured and attained a critical mass for faster growth by the end of World War II. This led to explorations in space, communications, computers and other allied technologies10. The specific needs of the aviation and space sectors, small size (miniaturisation) and high performance (computation), led to rapid growth in the fields of computers and communications. Once critical thresholds, in terms of performance, miniaturisation and production, were achieved in all four sectors by the 1990s, we find that the integration and interaction of these technologies have fuelled an explosive growth in all segments, underwritten by the core factors of information and knowledge. All these four segments, when fused, emerge as aerospace technologies. Aerospace power, realised through exploitation of aerospace technologies, is bringing about radical changes in the characteristics of the military power of a nation. These manifest themselves in four crucial areas of warfare in such a manner that these are responsible for major changes in the very nature of warfare, which is what the current RMA is all about. Currently, there are nearly 30 emerging technologies that are related to aerospace technologies and which would significantly affect the national power of major nations. Space related technology alone is advancing at such a rapid rate, that space has already become a crucial centre of gravity in the international power struggle. Military, civil, and commercial space sectors are converging, if not already have converged, and this is leading to an inevitable necessity for major nations to have space-faring ability. Space-based satellites are critical to vital information activities for modern warfare such as surveillance, reconnaissance, intelligence, navigation, communications, early warning, weather and electronic warfare. Information has always been and will be central to the conduct of warfare. Modern aerospace power has enabled an enormous availability of information for military forces. The major transformation in the nature of war necessitated by the RMA due to aerospace technologies is a shift from linear to non-linear war that plays the mental game as against the physical destructive pattern of the 20th century war. The major result of the ongoing aerospace revolution in military affairs would be seen in the conduct of wars in the 21st century. Because wars were fought on the surface of the earth for thousands of years, man has been conditioned to view war in a surface perspective. Hence the space power will be the future of warfare and create an RMA wherein the dimensions of war fighting will move away and away from the earth's surface. Space warfare is viewed as another new area of warfare. The military importance of space has been clear for over 40 years but only recently has it become possible to envisage an almost seamless integration of space systems into military operations. The utility of space systems for communications is well established but their use for global, real-time surveillance, reconnaissance and targeting is a more recent phenomenon. Space systems also provide precise navigation and meteorological data. Further into the future, space transportation systems, anti-satellite weapons, missile defences, and even space-based ground attack systems might play important roles in the conduct of military operations although some of these capabilities would raise complex arms control issues that would have to be addressed. Certainly, the achievement of superiority in space assets would be a critical advantage and its denial to an opponent would be an important war goal. (13)

Nano technology

8. Nanotechnology broadly encompasses the design, creation, synthesis, manipulation and application of functional material and systems through control of matter at the atomic and molecular levels( ranging between one and 100 nanometers or 1000 times smaller than the next largest unit, the micron) is emerging as the major focus of scientific and technological innovation for the 21 st century. Although surrounded by popular hyperbole in the 1980s and 1990s associated with the spectr of spontaneously self- replicating assemblers and “gray goo” (81) nanotechnology no longer is dismissed as science fiction and offers real prospects for working at the nexus orf quantum mechanics and Newtonian physics to design material with molecular precision. This opens profoundly new horizons to take advantage of both sets of material features to create devices at the macro scale with unique properties designed at the individual molecular level. Accordingly, an increasing number of nanotechnology enabled applications have begun to appear, ranging from enhanced sunscreen protection to novel power sources, artificial intelligence and smart sensor devices. Related innovations in pharmacology formulations, contrast agents for biomedical imaging, fabrics, optical material and superstrong protective coatings, for example, are now coming to practical fruition. (82)

9. Nanotechnology al;so is expected to advance medical diagnostics, therapeutics, vaccines and computing. With scientists already pushing convergence of engineered systems with basic physical, chemical, biological and human processes, there is growing confidence among researchers, industrialists and policymakers that nanotechnology will create a technological revolution in the years to come.

10. Although the full impact is not likely to materialize for the next twenty years with advances moving through successive generations of passive to active applications and systems by 2020. Proponents project with confidence that this will alter fundamentally global military technology to a greater extent than nuclear fission. As stated by Shimon Peres, “ that which has been achieved by the atomic bomb in the field of military strategy will be accomplished in the future by nanotechnology in the field of civil potential. The immense potential of nanotechnology has not been lost n strategic communities across the globe. In the US, federal nanotechnology R & D funding exceeds $ 1.4 billion per year across sixteen agencies and is loosely coordinated through National Nanotechnology Initiative (NNI). (83) In April 2007, Russia's then President, Vladimir Putin, echoed the charge by announcing plans to invest almost $ 8 billion in nanotechnology between 2008 and 2015 as part of an intensive effort to secure Moscow's competitive advantages in the high tech world economy beyond the crutch of its energy resurgence. Similarly the European union has committed $3.3 billion over the next two years. Other states including Japan, China, India, Brazil, Israel and Iran have followed the suit by scrambling to formulate respective national nanotechnology strategies that target research, development and deployment of potentially revolutionary commercial and defence related technologies and application. Accordingly, it6 is widely consideres that sales of nanotech products are on track to exceed $ 1 trillion by 2015. Notwithstanding the global consensus that a revolution is in the making, the future of nanotechnology remains uncertain.

11. The increasing attention to nanotechnology also carries direct links to international security. Even if molecular self-assemblers and nanobots are not physically possible, mainstream nanotech R & D is projected not only to lead to improvements in traditional weaponry but to generate revolutionary military applications and systems. There are at least 10 prospective security applications that have captured attention of the mainstream foresight community. Projected prominent applications include ; much smaller and faster electronics and computers to be used in weapons, uniforms, logistics, artificial intelligence and communications systems; tiny sensors that would provide new approaches to CBW defences; lighter, stronger and heat resistant materials for traditional and new types of smaller vehicles; smart protective fabrics, implants and gear; novel, very small, cheap and efficient energy storage systems; extremely accurate and long range target guidance system; autonomous mini and microbots; markedly smaller satellites and launch vehicles; and nuclear weapons ignited by microspots that would significantly lower the explosive yield and blur distinctions with convetional weaponry.

12. Due to wide ranging character of these innovations, military nanotechnology is expected to carry both offensive and defensive implications. For example, nanotechnology could offer qualitative new options for genetically (re)engineering viruses at the same time that nanoscale research stands to push the frontiers of detection, protection and remediation. At present, the effectiveness of nanotechnology research for weaponry versus countermeasures remains unclear and indistinguishable. Similarly, key commercial nanotech innovations in the realm of health/ medicine, materials, environment and energy are likely to produce spillover effects for military applications, while information technology and nanobots will hold advanced applications in the consumer/ health sector, thus compounding technical uncertainty regarding the distinguish ability of future offensive and defensive applications and systems.

13. Although the nanoscience revolution is in full swing, the issues of reliability, cost capability, manufacturability, utility, compatability and recyclability have not yet been extensively investigated. Furthermore, sustained financial support for nanotech investments does not hold the only key to distinguishing promise from hype. The mushrooming opportunities are matched by concerns for unprecedental environmental, ethical/legal and public health risks as well as for abuse of artificial intelligence unleashed by nanotechnology R & D. Coupled with public anxiety associated with science fiction- based nano-nightmares, the trajectory of development is subject to unpredictable change. Technical experts and the international foresight community are attuned to numerous nano-impeding(red), as well as nano advancing(blue) drivers that are likely to determine the course of futre breakthroughs.

Conclusion

Technology-driven RMAs are usually brought about by combinations of technologies, rather than individual technologies. More precisely, technology-driven RMAs are usually brought about by weapons or systems exploiting combinations of technologies. Examples include the blitzkrieg, which was enabled by the combination of three technologies—the tank, the two-way tactical radio, and the dive bomber; and the ICBM, which was enabled by the combination of three technologies—long-range ballistic missiles, lightweight fusion warheads, and highly accurate inertial guidance.

Not all technology-driven RMAs involve weapons. For example, the coming of the railroad to Europe and America in the 1830s- 1850s led to a revolution in strategic mobility. This was first demonstrated by the French when they moved 250,000 men at heretofore unheard-of speed to the front in northern Italy to engage the Austrians during the War of 1859. It was later demonstrated (by both sides) on numerous occasions in the 1860s during the American Civil War, and (particularly by the Germans) in 1870 during the Franco-Prussian War. (71)

All successful technology-driven RMAs appear to have three components: technology, doctrine, and organization. Technology, even when developed into a revolutionary weapon or system, is not enough to produce an RMA. It must be combined with doctrine (i.e., an agreed-upon concept for the employment of the new weapon or system) (72) and organization (i.e., a military force structure crafted to exploit the new weapon or system). For example, the blitzkrieg RMA resulted from the combination of the tank, two-way radio, and dive-bomber technologies, an operational concept in which highly mobile armored forces broke through enemy lines and rapidly penetrated to the rear, and a force structure (the panzer division) that concentrated the available tanks into a few specialized divisions. (73) The carrier aviation RMA resulted from the combination of technologies enabling military aircraft to take off and land on carrier decks; the operational concept allowed carrier aircraft to engage an opposing naval force at distances well beyond naval gunfire range and concentrate their attack on the opposing carriers. The force structure (the carrier task force) was built around the aircraft carrier and its planes. (74)

There are probably as many “failed” RMAs as successful RMAs. Some comparatively recent examples include the nuclear-powered military aircraft, the electromagnetic gun, and the thus far unfruitful attempts to develop high-energy laser (HEL) weapons for use in military combat.

RMAs often take a long time to come to fruition. There are many examples of this. The U.S. Navy began experimenting with aircraft in 1910; it took them almost three decades to fully develop the carrier warfare RMA. Similarly, the German army began experimenting with tanks in the early 1920s; it took them almost two decades to create the blitzkrieg. (75) Further back in time, although all of the major technology developments embodied in the machine gun were essentially completed by the 1870s, it did not come to fruition as an RMA in European warfare until September 1914, some 40 years later. (76) Even further back in time, the English developed the technology of the longbow and operational concepts for its use in combat over almost a century of civil wars in Britain, before springing it on the French at Crecy in 1346. (77) So the “revolution” in revolutions in military affairs does not mean the change will occur rapidly—sometimes it will, often it won't—but ultimately it will be profound. (78) (79)

2. Based upon an assessment of the outcomes of what have been defined as RMAs in the past, a revolution in military affairs takes place when one of the participants in a conflict incorporates new technology, organization, and doctrine to the extent that victory is attained in the immediate instance, but more importantly, that any other actors who might wish to deal with that participant or that activity must match, or counter the new combination of technology, organization, and doctrine in order to prevail. The accomplishments of the victor become the necessary foundation for any future military activities in that area of conflict. The emphasis on a specific area of conflict is important because it is possible that technologies or organizations proposed as elements of a current RMA -- such as the so-called sensor-to-shooter connection -- could be countered in a particular conflict by other elements, such as nuclear weapons.

3. Most true revolutions in military affairs have only been recognized after they have taken place. Except, perhaps, for nuclear weapons, the reality and power of the several revolutions in military affairs which will be briefly discussed below was recognized later, but not during their gestation period. One reason for this is that even in the relatively distant past, warfare itself has been in a constant state of flux. Most of this change was evolutionary, and as such was relatively easily countered. The effects of true revolutions in military affairs went beyond these changes and created a new environment. It should be noted that, from the perspective of the participants in the process, what was seen as evolutionary by the victorious side could have been seen as revolutionary by the losing side -- and by history.

1. In recent years, weapons technology has leapt forward. Weapons can be delivered with unprecedented precision; surveillance and reconnaissance systems can provide remarkably detailed information about hostile force structures and locations; and a combination of data analysis and distribution systems can allow this information to be rapidly exploited.

2. Most military analysts now agree that advances in military technology require a fundamental reappraisal and revision of operational concepts to ensure that full advantage is taken of them. This combination of technological advances and revisions in operational concepts represents a revolution in military affairs.

1. The military concept of Revolution in Military Affairs (RMA) is a theory about the future of warfare, often connected to technological and organizational recommendations for change in the military affairs. Especially tied to modern information, communications, and space technology, RMA is often linked to current discussions under the label of Transformation and total systems integration in the US military

1. "The Battlefield of the Future" - 21st Century Warfare Issues", Air University, (http://www.cdsar.af.mil/battle.bfoc.html) Chapter 3, p. 1, Jeffrey McKitrick, James Blackwell, Fred Littlepage, Georges Kraus, Richard Blanchfield and Dale Hill

2. For reference on the origins of the terms and the evolving thinking of one of the major contributors to the debate, see, "What is the Revolution in Military Affairs," by Barry Watts of the Northrop-Grumman Analysis Center. The beginning of this section draws heavily upon this study.

3. Builder's views appeared in the May 1995 issue of Armed Forces Journal International, pp. 38-39. Alvin and Heidi Toffler have also presented similar arguments in two of their books, The Third Wave and War and Anti-War.

4. The RMA concept pp33-34, The “Future of War- Organisations as Weapons” by Mark D Mandeles.

5. Mackubin Thomas Owens, "Technology, the RMA, and Future War," Strategic Review, Spring 1998, 67.

6. The following section draws upon an article in The National Interest for Fall 1994, Cavalry to Computer: The Pattern of Military Revolutions, by Andrew F. Krepinevich.

7. ibid.

8. ‘Pike' is the long sharp stick used as a weapon in the past by soldiers on foot.

9. See William j Perry, “Defence in An Age of Hope”, Foreign Affairs, (November/December 1996), pp. 76-77.

10. Operation Desert Storm witnessed for the first time an amalgamation of myriad technologies in the theatre of war. Satellites, communication systems, navigational aids and unmanned aerial vehicles were utilized for a variety of purposes including terrain mappin, location fixing, dissemination of information and battle damage assessment. For a detailed account of how different technologies were harnessed for benefitting the war fighters see Air Vice Marshal Vishwa Mohan Tiwari(Retd) and Rajni Kant Tiwari, ‘The High Tech War of Twentieth Century' ( New Delhi : Vikas Publishing House Ltd, 1996).

11. Andrew F Kreplnevlch, “Cavalry to Computer: The Pattern of Military-Revolutions,” In the National Interest(Fall 1994), p 30.

12. 1A rich literature of the history of military technology describes this process. Van Creveld (1989) includes a bibliographical essay reviewing this literature, with numerous references.

13. NATO : The Revolution in Military Affairs. From internet site http://www.naa.be/publications/comrep/1998/ar299stc-e.html(29 Nov 2009).

81. Drexler,K.E.1981.Molecularengineering:Anapproachtotimedevelopmentofgeneralcapabilitiesformolecularmanipulation.ProceedingsoftheNationalAcademiesofScience(PNAS)78,pp.5275-5278.

81.DanielRatnerandMarkA.Ratner,NanotechnologyandHomelandSecurity(UpperSaddleRiver,NJ:PrenticeHall,2004),pp.1to28.NationalResearchCouncil,(2006)AMatterofSize:TriennialReviewoftheNationalNanotechnologyInitiative,Washington,D.C.;NationalAcademiesPress.representsthe“nextfrontier”oftechnologicaladvancement.Althoughthefullimpactisnotlikelytomaterializeforthenexttwentyyears withadvancesmovingthroughsuccessivegenerationsofpassivetoactiveapplicationsandsystemsby2020proponentsprojectwithconfidencethatthis“revolutionatthebottom”willalterfundamentallyglobalprosperityandsecuritytoagreaterextentthannuclearfission.AsstatedbyShimonPeres,“thatwhichhasbeenachievedbytheatomicbombinthefieldofmilitarystrategywillbeaccomplishedinthefuturebynanotechnologyinthefieldof civil potential.

83. TheNNIwaslaunchedinJanuary2000withaninitial$497millioningovernment-sponsoredfunding.By2003,thegovernmentcommitted$710million.President GeorgeW.Bushsignedthe21stCenturyNanotechnologyResearchand Development Act into law inDecember2003.

71. See Brodie (1973, pp. 148-151) and van Creveld (1989, pp. 158-159).

72. Dupuy (1966) defines doctrine as “Principles, policies, and concepts which are combined into an integrated system for the purpose of governing all components of a military force in combat, and assuring consistent, coordinated employment of these components.” Doctrine normally includes concepts of operation, tactics, and, at its fullest, principles of strategy.

73. In contrast, the French, who had more (and better) tanks in 1940 than did the Germans, spread them out more or less equally throughout all the divisions of the French army (the wrong force structure) and used them as mobile fire support to the infantry (the wrong doctrine). During the 1920s and 1930s, the U.S. Army also viewed tanks primarily as infantry support weapons (the wrong doctrine); this led them to develop tanks with low-velocity guns (the wrong system), which were significantly inferior to the German tanks (with high-velocity guns) they faced in World War II. (See Johnson, 1990 and 1998.)

74. Dupuy (1984) discusses the critical role that the marriage of new weapons and new doctrine plays in the creation of an RMA.

75. See Guderian (1952), Macksey (1975), and Corum (1992).

76. See Ellis (1975).

77. See Churchill (1958), pp. 332-351.

78. Andrew Marshall (1995) makes this same point in his 1995 writing on RMAs, in which he says: “The term ‘revolution' is not meant to insist that the change will be rapid—indeed past revolutions have unfolded over a period of decades—but only that the change will be profound, that the new methods of warfare will be far more powerful than the old.”

79. Some RMAs do happen quickly, however. The best recent example may be the atomic bomb, which was developed and employed over a period of only four years. See Rhodes (1986).

BIBLIOGRAPHY

1. Norman Davis, “An Information-Based Revolution in Military Affairs,” Strategic Review, Vol. 24, No. 1, Winter 1996, pp. 43-53. U.S. Strategic Institute. Used by permission.

2. “Revolution in Military Affairs (RMA)” by Sharjeel Rizwan.

3. O.Hanlon, Michael. 2000. Technological Change and the Future of Warfare: Understanding the Revolution in Military Affairs. Washington, DC, Brookings Institution Press. Examines the hypothesis of a coming RMA from an American military perspective. O.Hanlon provides a historical perspective of RMA, presenting the origins and various schools of thought in the contemporary debate. Ultimately he is skeptical of RMA and develops technical and strategic arguments against it.

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