What is the most essential thing to win a war?,is it battle hardened men or Modern equipments?,Yes both are essential to win a war,but its impossible with out a powerful strategy that can take out enemy by surprise and that can convert enemy strategy in favour to our advantage.That's what really the OODA loop talks about.The OODA stands for Observe,Orientation ,Decision and Action Respectively.The loop is formulated during early 1970's by USAF strategist Col.John Boyd,The man behind R&D of advanced platforms like F-16 and F-18.It describes the sequence of events which must takes place in any military engagement.The loop is not only used by Military forces,But also used by Business organization to get an edge over the enemy thus gaining firm hold in market.Now lets understand this loop by taking an basic example of predator-prey interaction in biological world.assume a condition in which a tiger chasing an deer.As per OODA loop we can easily understand events up to catching of deer as following
1)Observe:The lion must observe each and every movements of the Deer so that it will get a clear picture of its pattern of movements and nature
2)Orientation:Now as per the observation he got he must orient himself to an advantageous position which will help him to catch the deer with element of surprise and gives less reaction time to deer
3)Decision:After orienting him to an advantageous position he must decisive how and when he should attack,which will left prey with a very little or no room for escape
4)Action:Now at last he must according to the plan so that he can catch the deer .
In above dogfight if both pilots are using same type of aircraft and weapon systems the win-loss chances are depends only on the respective OODA loop of pilots.,or The pilot with Faster OODA loop will defeat the opponent with slower OODA loop by blocking any move the opponent attempts to make.By studying Both examples we can say "An entity,that can process OODA loop quickly ,observing and reacting to unfolding events more rapidly than opponent can there by 'get inside' opponents decision cycle and gain advantage".
Any combat scenario whether its takes place in land,air or sea the OODA loop will be keeping continues contact with each other .According to Harry Hillaker,A colleague of Boyd;
"The key is to obscure your intentions and make them unpredictable to your opponents while you simultaneously clarify his intentions,that operate at faster tempo,To generate rapidly changing conditions that inhibit your opponent from adapting or reacting to those changes that suppresses or destroy his awareness.Thus a hodgepodge of confusion and disorder occur to cause him to over or under react to the conditions or activities that appear to be in certain,ambiguous or incomprehensible".
If we compare OODA cycles of Operation Desert storm which took 3-4 days to complete,with that of Operation Iraqi freedom which took less than 45 minutes ,we can understand how much the technology having influence over this loop.The UCAV and AWACS systems considerably reduce the time to complete the loop.So In a combat between two countries one who equipped with high technology equipments will have edge over the opponent and thus will win the war subjected to some conditions.As modern technology faded the concept of element of surprise the OODA loop will play a major role in future engagements.
#History and future of NCW :Wg Cdr Sanjay Pothuval
$Decision making:Its all about taking off and landing safely :Metayer,Estelle
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