It's a pleasure to be aboard MilitaryTimes. I've already enjoyed much interesting reading here, and look forward to contributing some bits of my own for others' consideration as well.
I was commissioned in the Regular Army in 1968 as an ROTC DMG, initially in Armor. Later on I transferred first to Civil Affairs, then to Military Intelligence, from which I retired in 2006. I spent most of my career in PSYOP, which at the time was branch-immaterial. As it happens, the Army created a PSYOP Branch on the exact date of my retirement. Feeling poetically deprived, I requested a "posthumous" branch transfer, which the Army graciously approved in 2011.
Along the way I qualified in PSYOP, Special Forces, Civil Affairs, Foreign Area Officer (West Europe), Defense Attaché - all of which finally dumped me into the very rare (indeed obscure) Primary Specialty of 48G: Politico-Military Affairs Officer. This kept me bouncing around between the Defense and State Departments, as well as DIA and CIA. I'm a 1987 graduate of the Industrial College of the Armed Forces, and civilianwise have a Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of California and an M.P.A. in National Resources Management from George Washington University. In 1990 I had the opportunity to be one of the Army's first Space Intelligence officers, so completed that qualification and spent the next four years assigned to HQ USSPACECOM J2X at Peterson AFB/Cheyenne Mountain. Vietnam 1969-70, and that's pretty much my laundry list.
I have continued to be intensely interested in the problem of war. Like anyone else who's experienced the real thing (not Hollywood!), I hate it. Human death, injury, lingering psychological damage, destruction of families, property, means of livelihood, etc. So I have devoted myself to seeing what might be done about it. I finally wrote up the result in a book, MindWar, just published this year and presently making its way through various government offices, agencies, and channels. It proposes not to eliminate war (which I believe to be an extremely strong emotional impulse in our species), but rather to transform its expression from physical violence to mental cooperative resolution (MindWar). To accomplish this requires first identifying, then modifying the machinery by which human minds process thought, which is accomplished both consciously and subconsciously by the means of psychological control techniques, or PSYCONs. This sounds science-fictiony, and perhaps a little scary, but as formulated it is actually a very benign process. Think of it as taking the highly emotional/irrational way that most people think and raising it to the level of intelligent deliberation.
One of the things I would like to do in the MT Forum is to introduce and explain some of these principles and invite the military community's feedback and critique of same. After all, war is a subject that concerns all of us very personally and directly, and the United States is a democracy in which national policies are supposed to reflect popular consensus. For this reason I wrote the book completely Unclassified, and the whole enchilada, so to speak, is "on the table". And something like this is obviously going to be a continuing work-in-progress, which smarter persons than myself may be refining long after I've kicked the bucket. Anyway it will do its job if it saves lives, alleviates hurt, and makes this planet a bit safer and more comfortable.
So, again happy to be here, and I look forward to some lively exchanges!
Michael A. Aquino
LTC, PSYOP, USA-Ret.
Welcome to the forum. Glad you could join us, I am sure your perspective will be a very valuable one in this community.
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