Creation of the “RED TEAM”- France’s Defense Forces Are Forging Ahead

  • France wants to utilize Sci-fi writers for the futuristic defense scenarios.
  • The “Red Team” approach is new but the concept of futurism application is not.
  • It does make logical sense for France to be one of the first to tap into civilian talent, employing Sci fi novelists to think creatively and help to stay ahead of the changing dynamic of traditional warfare.

Europe will not gamble on any uncertainty in NATO. Large EU economies are putting forth a tangible effort towards sovereign and continental defense outside of their historic NATO contributions and technology is one of their focuses. Although these new efforts pale in comparison to the combined NATO size and budget, they are a sign that sovereign defense still matters in the Eurozone. One such “startup” defense initiative is France’s DIA.

The French DIA (not to be confused with the American spy agency-the Defense Intelligence Agency) was created last year and it is geared towards the defense of continental Europe. The budget goal for this initiative is one billion Euros by 2022 and the agency aspires toward applying a target of 2% of gross domestic product funding by 2025.  It is the biggest budget continental European sovereign-technical defense program since the end of Cold War. The multi-facet French Military budget Plan 2019-2025 signed into the Military Planning Law (LPM) in 2018 authorized the creation of this agency.

Source: mc2-technologies.com

The DIA report suggests asking Sci-fi genre writers, the “RED Team,” to predict theoretical scenarios that can occur and to bring a creative approach in the risk management parameters of the new levels of the warfare. The team will entertain diverse scenario testing from terrorism to cyber-attacks. Moreover, to gauge civilian enthusiasm, the display of futuristic weapons “Nerod F5” was showcased during the Bastille Day in France.  NEROD F5 is a microwave jammer capable of disrupting and neutralizing all communication protocols used by drones.

Emmanuel Chiva, Director of the French Innovation Agency posted an announcement on the LinkedIn  platform this week and said projects will be launched soon. His post was met with increased interest and people are keen to apply for such a prestigious project.

The “Red Team” approach is new but the concept of futurism application is not. The US Naval Academy hosted the first NavyCon in 2017. Interestingly US Major General J. Marcus Hicks was one of the trailblazers in developing the Operation Overmatch game, making it available to all US military members, including active recruitment to play the game. It is a pilot by the US Army Capabilities Integration Center (ARCIC), designed to improve combat readiness capabilities and future components of the defense training. The crossover from video games to the real life scenarios will continue to be the theme and focus including strategic investments.

Furthermore, in 2017 Robert H. Latiff, retired U.S. Air Force Major General, wrote a book “Future War: Preparing for the New Global Battlefield,” which provides insight in the technical aspects of future war scenarios. His book predicts changes to the warfare theatre and that military technologies will forever change the dynamic and the actual landscape of the battlefield.

Image Source: Lithuanian Art Fund

Sci-fi scenarios have been depicted in motion pictures as well. The first two mentions of drones was in the sci-fi genre movie Back to the future II in 1989. In the movie a criminal is being detained by law enforcement and consequently media utilizes a drone to capture the event via video. The award winning Iranian film Mahajer (The immigrant) released in the 1989 features a character controlling a smaller plane to detect the view of the front line during a conflict.

In 1650 a book was published in Latin “Artis magnae artilleriae pars prima” by Casimir Siemienowicz detailing the rocket concept.

Another sci-fi scenario was described in “Histoire comique des États et empires de la Lune et du Soleil” (Comical History of the States and Empires of the Moon and the Sun) by Cyrano de Bergerac in France.

It does make logical sense for France to be one of the first to tap into civilian talent, employing Sci fi novelists to think creatively and help to stay ahead of the changing dynamic of traditional warfare.

The Western defense approach needs to change amid a renewed threat from the east. There will be further need to innovation and use futuristic predictions in order to execute threat assessments and develop control strategies with precision. The use of civilian resources is a great multi-dimensional strategy that France is smart to utilize.

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Christina Kitova

I spent most of my professional life in finance, insurance risk management litigation.

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