To: NATOPressOffice_all

Hopefully by now you have familiarized yourselves somewhat with the contents of the recent Top Secret FM 3-06: The New Urban Doctrine for Complex Environments. If not, please do read it as much as you can as it’s quite complex. In the meantime, here’s the SSG’s editorial summary, which should suffice for most media usages of the FOS:

  1. The Fourth Offset Strategy comes at a strange time, as the Third Offset Strategy is still underway throughout the US and NATO. While the Third Offset was developed by DOD alongside the pivot to the “two fronts” doctrine developed in the late 2010s marking a return to war between peer geopolitical powers after the end of the War on Terror. However, the Fourth Offset Strategy is essential both within and alongside TOS, and should not be seen as a supersession, but rather another front in the overall movement to maintain US/NATO military supremacy. The Third and Fourth Offsets close like pincers on the army of the future—a fully capable, agile, lethal, and adaptive H/A fighting force capable of near-instantaneous deployment and command of any operational theater it may find itself in.
  2. The Fourth Offset Strategy, broadly speaking, represents a revolution in urban warfare. The strategy is the concerted application of the guidelines set forth in army doctrine developed over the last decade, though the DOD and NATO have been well aware of the problems endemic in fighting in cities and megacities. FOS represents a practical, strategic application of nearly 40 years of research.
  3. At its core, the Fourth Offset Strategy consists of a doctrinal embrace of complexity when fighting within cities and megacities. This is a stark shift from previous doctrine which was undeveloped and suited best for fighting in towns surrounded by undeveloped countryside, largely not updated since tactics present as far back as the middle ages. Internally termed “Chaos Doctrine” (if you need a bit of conversational color), the strategy is formulated for fighting in cities that would “swallow” a traditional army. Rather than attempt to control the city and establish deterrence, area denial, and to hold key positions, FOS envisions “Fire Teams” composed of human and autonomous soldiers, linked to air, cyber, and maritime support as well as commanders, which are given discrete goals and loose directives on how to accomplish them, which can change given the parameters of the mission.
  4. Prior to the deployment of Fire Teams, FOS also stipulates the presence of psyop and cy-op units in order to “attack the city” by destabilizing crucial infrastructures and populations. According to FM 3-06 and especially the later FM 3-06k-m Addenda, the tactic of “local internal destruction and destabilization” (LIDD) is undertaken to create a “summon and destroy” (S&D) scenario. S&D tells us that, in fighting in unfamiliar, hostile terrain, the indigenous enemy obviously enjoys a massive advantage. By destabilizing and complexifying the environment, we deprive the indigenous enemy of their ability to navigate, coordinate, and attack. S&D follows that in this environment, hostiles will converge on the location of Fire Teams as best they can in a haphazard, uncoordinated way, at which point they can be dealt with by the Fire Team.
  5. In this fluid, shifting, alien landscape, the Fire Teams will maintain cohesion and tactical superiority by employing jam-proof inter-team and command communications, multi-domain cohesion between cyber, air, and maritime forces, human & autonomous agent cooperation, One World Terrain spatial information, and farseeing weapons systems.
  6. The introduction of the Fourth Offset Strategy will, over the coming years, allow NATO to defend and protect our interests in the urbanized cores of the world, and serve as a deterrent in the complex, urban homes of NATO’s enemies.