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Lesson Index: [ Introduction | Lesson Objective | Overview | Asymmetric Warfare—Definition | Alternative Operational Concepts | Anti-Access Strategy | Power Projection—A Military Strategy | Anti-access: A Strategy Threat | Anti-Access: Weapons Threat | Anti-access: Political Threats | Countering Anti-Access Strategies | Global Strike CONOPS | Summary ]

Title: Anti-access: A Strategy Threat

Action: Music plays for a few seconds and the following quote by the National Science Board in 1999 is shown center screen:

Those states preparing for potential conflict with the United States will seek to capitalize on the great distances U.S. forces must travel to engage them, and on U.S. forces’ near absolute reliance on unimpeded access to and use of ports, airfields, bases and littoral waters in the theater of conflict…

Voice: A Defense Science Board study indicates that potential US adversaries have learned a few lessons from DESERT STORM and US military operations since then.

Action: The quote is removed and a graph is presented on screen. The horizontal axis is labeled “Time” and the vertical axis is labeled “Forces Committed.” The graph is divided vertically into four sections with different colors representing the active state of the Armed Forces at those times. The sections are “Peacetime Posture”, “Transition to MTW Posture”, “Prosecute MTW”, and “Disengage/Reconstitute”, from left to right. There are also two horizontal sections at the bottom of the graph; the lower section is labeled “Steady State Force Pressure” and the upper section is labeled “Crisis Response/Humanitarian Relief.” There is a bell-shaped curve that starts at the top of “Steady State Force Pressure.” The point where the curve meets the right edge of “Peacetime Posture” is labeled “Strategic Warning”. The curve peaks in the middle of the “Prosecute MTW” section at a point indicated by arrow as “Desired Force Level for MTW.” A point just before the peak on the curve is labeled “Enemy Attacks.” The section between the “Strategic Warning” and “Enemy Attacks” points on the graph is labeled “CONUS-to-Theater Deployment.”

Voice: They recognize the U.S. reliance on warning time and access to deployment bases and are actively preparing to exploit this reliance as a weakness.

Action: The “Enemy Attacks” point on the graph is highlighted and replaces the “Strategic Warning” point.

Voice: Consider a scenario where a surprise attack eliminates the warning time...

Action: The curve is displaced to be much flatter. The new line is labeled as “Force Deployment Limited by Anti-Access.”

Voice: ...and anti-access measures limit the forces that can be moved into theater.

Action: The graphic is replaced with the following quote by President George W. Bush, spoken in 2000, in the screen center:

The Gulf War was a stunning victory. But it took six months of planning and transport to summon our fleets and divisions and position them for battle. In the future, we are unlikely to have that kind of time. Enemy ballistic and cruise missiles and weapons of mass destruction may make such operations difficult. Satellite technology, commercially available, may reveal to potential enemies the location of our ships and troops…

Voice: The resulting situation could look a lot more like Normandy during World War II than the case we had at the beginning of DESERT STORM.

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