The U.S. Army information operations (IO) community faces an identity crisis. Army IO officers, known by their career field designation of Functional Area 30 (FA30), are the “staff focal point for IO,” and perform a vital function to synchronize, coordinate, and integrate information effects into unit operations. However, the FA30 community lacks a coherent group identity in part because of a widespread misunderstanding of IO stemming from years of constantly changing doctrine, terminology, and theories of execution. As a result, the Army lacks a shared institutional understanding of both IO and the purpose of FA30s. The degree to which the FA30 community can overcome this identity crisis will determine how well the Army can recruit, train, retain, and employ its IO professionals to meet the current and future challenges of information warfare.
The Army’s Information Operations Profession Has an Identity Crisis
By Major Bradley Young and Major Jonathan Wood, U.S. Army