Thursday, 3 March 2011

Operation Earnest Voice - online engagement

In written testimony to the US Senate Armed Services Committee on Tuesday, Gen. James N Mattis, commander of US Central Command, spoke about the unseen work of the military in countering radical Islamist propaganda. In particular he spoke about Operation Earnest Voice, for which the Pentagon requested $45 million last year, to go towards "products to counter radical ideology and influence key audiences across the region via internet or other mediums".
The programme is said to provide the capability to engage its target audiences in both Arabic and Urdu weblogs, chat rooms and social networks.
This is what Mattis wrote in his submission to the committee: "CENTCOM Activities in the Information Environment: Consistent with the guidance provided by Secretary Gates last December, we conduct Operation Earnest Voice (OEV), which synchronizes and oversees all of our Information Operations activities. OEV seeks to disrupt recruitment and training of suicide bombers; deny safe havens for our adversaries; and counter extremist ideology and propaganda. Full funding of OEV supports all activities associated with degrading the enemy narrative, including web engagement and web-based product distribution capabilities. The effective engagement of our enemies in cyberspace requires the ability for us to conduct a full-spectrum of traditional military activities against them in that domain, including all aspects of Information Operations and Strategic Communication. We coordinate with the Joint Staff, the Interagency, the Intelligence Community, and our coalition partners to examine the adversary’s use of cyberspace and identify techniques, tactics and procedures we can use to counter the adversary in the cyber domain."
Anyone have any more information on this programme?

Some information can be found on the website of the Association of Old Crows (AOC) - I kid you not! Based just outside Washington, this professional association claims over 13,500 members and 180 + member organisations engaged in the science and practice of Electronic Warfare, information operations and related disciplines. It produces the Journal of Electronic Defense for its members and holds regular conferences and debates.

3 comments:

The Familiar Strange said...

This may be another connecting dot.

http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2011/02/22/exclusive-militarys-persona-software-cost-millions-used-for-classified-social-media-activities/

Nick Fielding said...

Thanks for this very useful link. This is clearly a huge programme with very scary attributes. More clarification needed.

john milton said...

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