Examination of Witnesses (Questions 620
WEDNESDAY 5 FEBRUARY 2003
CBE AND MR
620. Can we move on to doctrines for special
forces? If I understood you, Mr Kernohan, I agree with your views
about the use of the word "doctrines". I think it is
not the right word. Anyway, for the purposes of now we would be
interested to know how the doctrine for Special Forces is integrated
with all other aspects of military doctrine. Of course, we are
asking this question because of the enhanced role which the Special
Forces now have. We are of course aware of the fact that much
surrounding Special Forces is classified, so I am merely asking
you to speak in general terms.
(Air Vice Marshal McNicoll) I can answer your question
in part but not in whole. We have recently produced a Special
Forces doctrine at JDCC in conjunction with the UK Special Forces.
That document obviously is classified but it is intended to inform
the wider audience within the UK armed forces of the utility of
Special Forces and how they are employed. What we are not engaged
in and what I understand the MoD does not make a practice of commenting
on anyway is actual details of Special Forces' internal doctrine.
Mr Cran: You anticipated my next two questions,
which were, are you involved and who else is involved. You have
answered those, so we can move on, Chairman.
621. Should information operations become an
overarching strategic concept for UK defence planners?
(Air Vice Marshal McNicoll) We now view the information
campaign as being the central part of the campaign, information
in the widest sense encompassing all actions of the campaign.
The effects based targeting that I talked about earlier is very
definitely part of that and our aspiration to move towards effects
based operations is also part of that. I think I am agreeing with
622. Is specialist information superiority training
needed and is it being taught all over again?
(Air Vice Marshal McNicoll) People do require specialist
training for specialist appointments but I think there is a generality
which means that everybody involved needs to have a better picture
and that in fact is part of policy on information operations.
623. How are you going to keep current with
doctrine? Once you produce your most recent documents you will
still be functioning, I presume, and topping up, or will you be
(Air Vice Marshal McNicoll) I think producing doctrine
from scratch the way this organisation did was a bit like building
the Forth Bridge, but we are now into painting it.
Chairman: You will still be here. Thank you
so much for coming.