The objective of Military Leadership Psychology is Victory

Throughout history, leadership has held significant importance in the military. Therefore, it is critical to comprehend military psychology, which is exclusively focused on achieving victory.

Military psychology is strategically structured to ensure victory through optimising performance, resilience, and mental health of service members.

By enhancing training, fostering resilience, and addressing mental health needs, it aims to bolster readiness and effectiveness.

Additionally, it analyses enemy behaviour, supports leadership, and contributes to psychological operations to gain strategic advantage.

In essence, military psychology’s multifaceted approach is geared towards maximising psychological readiness and operational success in the complex and demanding environments of modern warfare

Leaders, Leadership and Victory

A leader is tasked with motivating and reassuring soldiers of the value of the causes they are tasked with defending, as well as furnishing them with the necessary psychological and tactical fortitude to achieve victory in combat.

Political, social, and cultural connections have been leveraged to establish the psychological structure required for military leadership ever since the ancient Greek era.

Despite the emergence of psychology as a recognised scientific discipline in the late nineteenth century, the psychological dimension of warfare continued to be vital.

Military science is founded upon the principles of strategy, tactics, and operations.

Military psychology can be readily incorporated into the broader parent sciences, specifically their applied branches, which encompass topics that extend beyond processes directly related to conflict.

The post–World War II era witnessed the emergence of a greater number of terms than the Iraq War in 1991.

These terms exhibit resemblances to the term “psychological war” or possess semantic components associated with psychological warfare.

Technological, economic, and political developments that gained momentum concurrently with the institutionalisation of psychology would increase its role in recruiting, educating, and preparing soldiers for military service and combat as the twentieth century progressed.

The terms emerged from the discernment of military analysts, who considered contemporary geopolitical events and trends, the rapid advancements in technology and the military sector, and the determination to discontinue the exclusive reliance on nuclear weapons to establish dominance.

I will define the following terms for you:

1. In its broadest definition, “special war”:

Is an alternative term for psychological warfare. Mostly utilised by Eastern Bloc countries. Evidently, Russia considers the conflict with Ukraine to be a Special Operation, given the current context.

2. Low-intensity conflict;

Refers to activities in which complete dominion over the political, economic, and social dynamics of a country is pursued by employing various clandestine methods, while abstaining from the utilisation of physical aggression.

3. Operations:

That employ deceitful methods to counterbalance the advantages of the more powerful side are referred to as asymmetric threats. Their fundamental tactic is to prolong contact with the enemy and deplete his resources; ideology triumphs over technology at all times.

As a result, their objective is not territorial conquest or sovereignty threats; rather, it is to undermine adversaries’ resolve and capability to employ superior conventional military capabilities and to intervene effectively in protracted regional conflicts.

4. Public diplomacy:

During periods of peace, the term “public diplomacy” is employed to denote the concept of psychological warfare, which is different in practice during times of conflict.

Public diplomacy, an emerging concept in the field of international relations, operates under the premise that the application of “soft powers” may yield greater results than resorting to force or engaging in conflict.

Public diplomacy pertains to the conduct of an independent nation with regard to the citizens of other countries, with the intention of influencing their perspectives and gaining support for its own national goals or interests on the international stage.

By means of expert exchanges, public relations firms, the media, non-governmental organisations, and public opinion research agencies, this can be accomplished with the ultimate objective of “convincing” other nations to take actions and make decisions that are detrimental to their own interests.

5. Hybrid warfare:

The objective of this form of conflict is to modify the regime, political system, and/or state order of the targeted nations.

Various stakeholders, including media outlets, humanitarian organisations, religious groups, peacemakers, and mediators, are engaged in such conflicts.

The term “hybrid warfare” delineates the subsequent components as fundamental components:

  • The utilisation of both conventional and unconventional methods of warfare;
  • Both overt and covert forms of security threats
  • A wide range of manifestations
  • Intenseness, spontaneity, adaptability, obscurity, ambiguity, or concealment of the source and instigator of the incident
  • Cyber attacks
  • Economic sanctions, blockades, and boycotts
  • Denial of involvement in the events
  • Subversive weaponry
  • Absence of action when the perpetrators are concealed among the civilian population

6. The term “unlimited war”

Denotes the Chinese perspective on modern warfare.

The forms of interminable warfare include nuclear, diplomatic, financial, commercial, biochemical, intelligence, resource, ecological, space, regulation-based, electronic, smuggling, and sanction-based conflicts.

Additionally, humanitarian, and ecological conflicts are included in this category.

The governing principles of strategizing and executing unlimited warfare are comprehensiveness, compliance, limited objectives, unlimited measures (any procedures and measures may be selected to achieve the specified goals), asymmetry, minimal consumption, multidimensional coordination, adjustment, and control.

7. The use of cyber space:

Information, and information resources to wage international conflicts constitutes cyberwar. It manifests itself partially or entirely through the medium of the Internet or cyber space.

Cyber space encompasses an assortment of electronic media that produce, transfer, interchange, or store data that is subject to scrutiny by the media or specialists, whether in a public or private capacity.

Participants in cyberspace-based communication may also obstruct, eliminate, or otherwise modify information that is broadcast there.

Cyber space extends beyond the confines of the Internet to incorporate non-integrated information networks as well.

It occurs near cybercrime and espionage, from which it differs primarily in the objective pursued by the assailant, rather than in the instruments, techniques, or tactics employed.

The absence of international legal regulations and a universally accepted definition of cybe rwarfare is notable.

In this context, it is also possible to address several additional cyber threats: clandestine or overt information operations designed to sway public opinion for political gain; opposition protests instigated and disseminated; and unofficial social group organisation with the intention of overthrowing established governments or subverting the state and social order.

This post was written by Mario Bekes