Tuesday, August 25, 2009

We need to learn from our adversaries

A few years ago I proposed an approach to waging a war of ideas:

In [one strategy] the enemy attempts to use the target country’s media as a vehicle to sap the people’s and political leaders’ will to fight...[or] attack a school or a courthouse in order to show that the government can’t defend itself...In [another strategy] the enemy actually becomes the media and the political leadership...the enemy seeks to become the country's media, university and grade school teachers, writers, artists, etc. They become the purveyors of culture.
things become much more complicated if they actually become the judges, intelligence officers, diplomats, policy makers etc. I don’t really think there is a major role for the state in this kind of intellectual war, but rather think that ideas have to be fought with ideas, and that the people who want to defend their country from this kind of attack need to develop their own...tactics independent of the state.

There is no better exemplar of this kind of strategy than the Frankfurt School (Via ChicagoBoyz):

So how do you defeat this kind of an adversary? What kind of strategy, ideas and organization can be successful in this kind of competition?

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