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Irregular Warfare

Countering Irregular Threats 2017 Edition

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The Irregular Warfare: Countering Irregular Threats Joint Operating Concept (JOC) is the United States Department of Defense approach for countering irregular threats. Terrorism, insurgency, instability, corruption, and transnational organized crime are some examples of irregular threats. Although the JOC is a military based perspective, the JOC has proven to be a viable conceptualization for irregular threats. Therefore, private, public , and government organizations, departments, and agencies must understand the underlying concept and supporting precepts and premises embedded in the JOC. Understanding the concept is the first step; committing to the concept is next. Achieving the organizational capacity and capability to employ the concept in an inter-agency, cross-domain, multinational, and host nation environment is the final step. Organizational understanding, commitment, and employment all begin at the individual level.

Another reason why private, public, and non-military government agencies and organizations should be familiar with the JOC, is that the JOC articulates how the joint force must operate to counter irregular threats. A joint force includes many non-military entities. The JOC also guides force development, materiel and non-materiel capability development, and experimentation, so the JOC facilitates cooperation and collaboration via articulation. In short, the JOC describes how the future joint force will conduct operations, when directed by the US President or Secretary of Defense, to prevent, deter, disrupt, and defeat non-state actors, as well as state actors who pose irregular threats.

One more reason why people in private, public, and government organizations should be familiar with the JOC is that the concept prefers indirect approaches as compared to kinetic or direct military action. Some examples of indirect approaches are diplomatic, information, and economic pressure. The reason for this is that indirect means work better and last longer as compared to military means. The JOC is based on ends, ways, and means. For the sake of clarity, ends are the objectives or desired outcomes; ways are specific actions that the joint force will undertake to reach those outcomes; and means are the methods and capabilities required to execute the ways. So private, public, and non-military means are the best way to achieve the desired ends.

It is true that multidisciplinary synergy intended to prevent, deter, disrupt, and defeat irregular threats is difficult to obtain. The key to synergy is a synchronized well-developed enterprise wide educational program that at minimum provides private, public, and non-military government staff with training that encompasses the complexities of the JOC and the spillover between the various functional and operational domains. This requires a polythetic or multi-theoretical approach to irregular threats; one that utilizes tailored counter methods and techniques.


Your Instructor


Richard J. Campbell
Richard J. Campbell

Author, project coordinator, Intel analyst, curriculum/training developer, lessons learned coordinator, site lead, Anti Money-laundering Specialist, technical trainer & leader. Master's degree in psych and three graduate level certificates (Strategic Intelligence-targeting, Anti Money-laundering & Counter Terrorist Financing, and Anti-terrorism).

Richard J. Campbell served in the US Army for over 20-yrs. He was assigned to the 2nd 75th INF Ranger Battalion at Fort Lewis WA (7-yrs) and was a Team Lead at the JFK Special Warfare Center at Fort Bragg NC (5-yrs). He retired in 1995 as an Operations NCO for a Command Group. Next, he completed a BA and MA in psychology and worked on in-patient psychiatric wards as a member of a multidisciplinary psychiatric treatment team (7-yrs).

In 2005 he began working on the Iraq-Kuwait border as Observer/Controller and training developer (5-yrs) and developed, taught, and assessed Search and Site Exploitation related topics.During that time he published a book titled Asymmetric Tactical Training. In 2010 he began acting as the Curriculum Developer, Lessons Learned Coordinator, and Site-lead at The NATO Counterinsurgency Training Center in Kabul Afghanistan (CTC-A) (2-yrs). Since then has developed a online course-ware set in response to the 2015 DOD Combating Terrorism Technical Support Office Broad Agency Announcement, worked at the USMC Small War Center and Irregular Warfare Integration Div. in VA, and published several articles. He is currently in SE Asia developing training content for AML/CTF.

A portion of his articles can be viewed on the Joint Center for International Security Force Assistance (JCISFA) website within the Community of Interest page. Another portion of his work can be purchased via the Amazon.com Kindle Book Store.


Class Curriculum


  Irregular Warfare
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