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Appendix B

Operation Swift Split

On the airplane again. Lt Gen Edward F. Barnes looked at his watch: 0900, 8 September 2025. "We'll be in the middle of the shooting in three hours," he thought. He looked up at the five-tense warriors sitting with him on the modified 797. He was glad to have them as his staff. Each one knew decisions were measured in someone else's blood.

General Barnes couldn't kick his old habit. Their computers knew what his computer knew, but habit made him tell them anyway: "Guyana and Surinam are at it again. Both countries have vacillated between democracy and military juntas since about 2010. Since then, they have argued over the hydropower of the New River. 1 You know the last border dispute ended only two years ago. Secretary of State Hillary Druary told me three days ago she had finished secret negotiations with the UN and OAS to prepare for armed intervention by the US if peace talks failed. Fighting broke out just over four hours ago. Each side has gained territory, and both countries have committed terrorist acts against civilians in Venezuela and Brazil. The situation could easily spin out of control. Our objectives are to separate the armies and reestablish peace based on the last agreement. Let's go to the board."

Col Frank Whorton was the personnel chief: "This is the first time we've used the automatic personnel status reports in a shooting match, but they're working well. The computer woven into each warrior's clothing gives us their name, rank, unit, specialty, health status, and location. 2 You can see the information split out or lumped together at any level of organization. In addition, a random poll of the troops and leaders has assessed morale, understanding of our mission, and understanding of the cultures we're facing."

General Barnes turned to Brig Gen Bill Hladek. "OK, -2, whacha got?" "Well, sir," General Hladek began, "the screen pretty much sums up the intelligence situation. First off, the computer's showing only a 2 percent probability of WMDs in either country. You know the system will almost never give a straight 100 percent or 0 percent answer because it forces us to take responsibility for decisions. My staff and I ran formal reviews of the intelligence synthesis system eight months ago and validated the four decision-making models listed on your screen. Per standard procedures, we've established links with every US embassy in Latin America, the State Department, OAS Headquarters, UN Headquarters, and professors from eight universities in the US and Latin America on contract as consultants. Their recommendations are starting to pour in. They got almost the same briefing as the one you and the National Security Council gave President Stonerock two hours ago. In addition, 14 journals on South American studies were scanned again and their information updated in our databases. Finally, we added 17 reconnaissance platforms to the three already over the area. 3 At this point, we have dispositions on approximately 86 percent of the enemy forces down there, and we expect a 97 percent disposition before our forces touch down. We've pinpointed their command posts down to the company level and located all their armor and mechanized forces. The system identified one hole we're trying to fill. We know your intel plan says you want to know where government leaders are, but we haven't found the Guyanan 'President-for-Life' yet."

Brig Gen Chip Borud was the joint task force operations officer. He spoke next: "Well, folks, here's the ops situation. We started planning three days ago. We set H-hour when the shooting started,, then implemented Joint Operations Plan 14.76 at H+3 after getting the OK from Secretary of Defense Warden. Mission shred-outs for each unit were briefed in mobility holding areas and on the airplanes while flying in. Culture briefings pointed out about 25 percent of the population is Hindu and about 20 percent is Muslim. 4 Cultural and religious taboos were briefed to help enhance legitimacy for peace enforcement after we stop the fighting. Dutch is the official language in Surinam, 5 so every warrior on the ground is wearing his universal language translator in his ear." 6

General Borud's staff had tested the Wisdom Warrior Advisor System extensively. (The NCOs immediately called the system "the Wiz" and the name stuck.) While putting together the deliberate plan for this theater, General Borud had split his staff into two competing teams. The first team developed courses of action using the now-ancient Global Command and Control System (GCCS) and the second team developed plans using Wiz. Then they ran 400 simulations with the competing plans. For the first hours of the campaign, neither plan had an edge. However, after eight hours, the performance of the Wiz plans pulled way ahead by every measure. First off, Wiz's plans were superior. The plans included factors not considered by the GCCS team and Wiz's team achieved better economy of force. Secondly, information overload killed the GCCS team. The GCCS team discovered human memories and quickly developed gaps, especially under stress. Sometimes those gaps took a long time to fill, even when the whole team worked on them. By contrast, the team with Wiz developed about the same number of memory gaps but could fill them almost instantly just by asking Wiz. Wiz owed a lot to the GCCS concepts but finally put GCCS to rest.

In developing the crisis plan for this campaign, Borud and his team gave Wiz the campaign and national objectives. Then they told Wiz to design campaigns using the philosophies of many commanders and theorists. Sun Tzu in ancient China, Jomini and Clausewitz after Napoleon, MacArthur in World War I, Bradley and Halsey in World War II, Dayan in Israel's fight for Palestine, Giap in Vietnam, Horner in the Gulf War, and Wallman in the Big War of 2013.

Wiz pulled together the information in its databases and all the databases to which it was connected: digitized maps, political maps, cultural guides, industrial data, current weather and forecasts, enemy doctrine, enemy objectives, and the doctrines and capabilities of available US forces. Wiz then used several models to determine the most likely enemy centers of gravity.

Wiz determined the initial center of gravity for both countries was the King Edward VII Falls on the New River. It was the key to exploiting the hydropower potential in the area and was the objective of both countries. Wiz also pointed out our airborne and long-range air assault troops could seize the Falls faster than either Guyana or Surinam. Wiz reasoned that if we held both sides' reason for war, we could gain our initial objective to stop the fighting.

Wiz automatically ran simulations on the planned campaigns and evaluated them against the usual criteria: ability to achieve national objectives, contribution to a long-term better state of peace, casualties to our side, casualties to the enemy, estimate of collateral damage, time to complete the campaign, logistics feasibility, and cost.

General Barnes had given Borud the weights for each factor. Wiz determined Sun Tzu's style would work best overall. However, Wiz pointed out that emulating MacArthur's audacity in World War I would play well in the cultures of Guyana and Surinam and would be useful for establishing legitimacy of UN forces in enforcing the peace.

Borud told all this to Barnes and held his breath. Borud knew this was the point at which Barnes always proved why he was in charge. Barnes was a genius. He trusted Wiz. He appreciated using something much like it when he worked logistics on the joint staff in the Big War just 12 years ago. But Barnes knew no computer could replace him. Barnes could feel the battlefield. He could smell the enemy. Barnes could taste the battle. He knew only a human can run this most human of endeavors. He wanted Wiz's help but he knew the decision was his, and his alone. Barnes closed his eyes and thought silently for several minutes. Finally, he asked, "Roxanne, what about you?"

Col Roxanne Wyant, the J-4, stirred. "General, Wiz is working the logistics just fine. It already projected the minimum and maximum force sets for the most likely scenarios needed to meet the national objectives. It has incorporated the scenarios run by the J-3 and issued orders for the minimum force set to immediately move to staging areas in the theater. It also issued warning orders for units in the maximum force set. We'll send out execution orders to them if you give the word. Wiz alerted our primary suppliers and our "just-in-time" resupply will start flowing this afternoon. Since logistics feasibility was a grading criteria for the ops planning, we have no limiting factors due to logistics in any of the plans in front of you."

General Barnes grunted. It was all being done in accordance with the standard procedures he had issued, but it was still a surprise when the computer thought two steps ahead of him, even when he had told it what steps to take.

The meeting had taken 15 minutes. He needed a cup of coffee and a few minutes to think alone, so he excused the staff. He looked at the holographic battlespace picture on his desk and zoomed in on the King Edward VII Falls. General Barnes knew that every captain in the 82d Airborne could see the same thing through the contact lenses each one wore. 7 "But what do I want those great captains to do?" Barnes paced back and forth in the small cabin. After five minutes, he called the staff in, then called the secretary of defense and the president. "Mr. President, this is what we should do..."

By H+5 hours, the plane carrying Capt "Acid" Raines' airborne company was loitering over the Caribbean along with the six other C-18s carrying the minimum force set. At H+6 hours, everyone there heard and saw President Stonerock give his objectives. Next, General Barnes appeared and briefed his intent and the outline of the campaign plan. The contact lens displays were so vivid, Captain Raines almost came to attention. Five minutes later, the brigade commander appeared and told Captain Raines to secure the northwest side of the top of the King Edward VII Falls. Raines' Raiders had a mission.

Captain Raines asked Wiz for enemy dispositions and estimated arrival times at the falls. He then zoomed in his country display on the falls and asked Wiz for the best drop zone locations. Wiz told Raines to clarify his meaning of "best." After Raines gave Wiz the criteria, Wiz gave Raines a choice. He could land his company together in a clearing on the southeast side of the falls and take boats across to the northwest side. Wiz said this gave him a 90 percent probability he could have his whole company in place one hour before the time Wiz estimated the enemy would arrive. On the other hand, Raines could jump his company into a small drop zone on the northwest side, closer to his final position, but with multiple aircraft passes. That meant he could have men in place three hours before the enemy got there but Wiz said there was a 40 percent chance he would lose 15 men in the hazardous drop into the jungle. Raines would rather have less time to dig in together than have more time with some men dead. He picked the clear zone across the river.

Raines had his platoon sergeants look at the plans. No one suggested changes so Raines sent them to the brigade commander. Wiz noted another company was dropping at the same place so the brigade commander gave Raines priority. Wiz passed the word to both company commanders and used its airspace management routines to vector the transport planes. 8 It would take an hour to fly to the drop zone. Raines decided some practice would help so he had Wiz display the drop, river crossing, and platoon maneuvers in double real time on each man's display, then turned the men over to the platoon sergeants. At H+7 hours, Raines' Raiders started their drop.

It took six days. It really took only four days to separate the armies but it took two more days to convince the Guyanan "President-for-life" to join the peace talks. They fulfilled the prophecy: faster operations mean more effectiveness. 9


Credits

1. Illustrations of Clausewitz, Sun Tzu, and Napoleon in figure 3-3 courtesy of Daniel M. Armstrong, L. Susan Fair, and Steven C. Garst, artists at Air University Press, Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama.

2. Globe graphic in figure 3-2 courtesy of Maj Larry Adair, USAF, student at Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama.

3. Holographic battlespace in figure 3-7 courtesy of Air Force Institute of Technology.

4. Figures 1-0, 2-3, 3-4, and 3-6 contain clipart from Microsoft Clipart Gallery * 1995 with courtesy from Microsoft Corp.

5. Figure 3-5 contains clipart from Federal Clip Art * 95 with courtesy from One Mile Up, Inc.


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Notes

1
Central Intelligence Agency, The World Factbook 1995, 399.
2
2025 Concept, No. 900572, "Plastic Computing," 2025 Concepts Database (Maxwell AFB, Ala.: Air War College/2025, 1996); 2025 Concept, No. 900490, "Crewman's Data Vest," 2025 Concepts Database (Maxwell AFB, Ala.: Air War College/2025, 1996).
3
2025 Concept, No. 900552, "On-demand Tactical Recce Satellite Constellation," 2025 Concepts Database (Maxwell AFB, Ala.: Air War College/2025, 1996).
4
Central Intelligence Agency, 399.
5
Ibid.
6
2025 Concept, No. 900340, "Universal Language Translator," 2025 Concepts Database (Maxwell AFB, Ala.: Air War College/2025, 1996).
7
2025 Concept, No. 900263, "The All Seeing Warrior," 2025 Concepts Database (Maxwell AFB, Ala.: Air War College/2025, 1996).
8
2025 Concept, No. 900526, "Space-Based Airspace Control & Deconfliction System," 2025 Concepts Database (Maxwell AFB, Ala.: Air War College/2025, 1996).
9
USAF Scientific Advisory Board, New World Vistas: Air and Space Power for the 21st Century, summary volume (Washington, D.C.: USAF Scientific Advisory Board, 15 December 1995), 6.


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