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Boyd

a_majoor

Army.ca Legend
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Just working through "Boyd; the fighter pilot who changed the art of war"

For those of you who do not know, LCol John Boyd (USAF) was not only a hot fighter pilot, but also developed ideas like the "Aerial Attack Study", "Energetic Maneuverability theory", founded the 1970 era "military reform movement" and is the inventor of the "Boyd Cycle", more commonly known as the "OODA loop". His insights are sometimes credited as being the foundation of the idea of 4GW as well.

Considering the size and importance of these concepts (and the outcome as well; E-M theory informed the design of the F-16 and F-18, and use of the OODA loop concept in conjunction with Air-Land War doctrine has made the US army the most potent force in the field in conventional conflicts) you would think that Boyd would be the best known military figure of the late 20th century. Unfortunately, Col Boyd was also the sort of person who lacked finesse and social/bureaucratic skills (most of us would probably not have enjoyed being in the same room as him), which doomed his chances at promotion and recognition.

Interesting read, and provides a good insight into where these ideas came from.
 
Boyd's charge to his Acolytes:

"Tiger, one day you will come to a fork in the road,” he said. “And you’re going to have to make a decision about which direction you want to go.”  He raised his hand and pointed. “If you go that way you can be somebody. You will have to make compromises and you will have to turn your back on your friends. But you will be a member of the club and you will get promoted and you will get good assignments.”  Then Boyd raised his other hand and pointed another direction.

“Or you can go that way and you can do something – something for your country and for your Air Force and for yourself.  If you decide you want to do something, you may not get promoted and you may not get the good assignments and you certainly will not be a favorite of your superiors. But you won’t have to compromise yourself.  You will be true to your friends and to yourself.  And your work might make a difference.” 

He paused and stared into the officer’s eyes and heart. “To be somebody or to do something. In life there is often a roll call. That’s when you will have to make a decision. To be or to do. Which way will you go?
 
http://www.ejectejecteject.com/archives/000172.html

Interesting read.


I'd cut and paste (I tried) but it's too long.

Highly recommended!
 
Web update:

Uploading John Boyd
The Legend Delivering His Opus is Now Online — and is as Relevant as Ever

https://medium.com/the-bridge/uploading-john-boyd-4264b82d73ed#.2cp874jl5

More recently at Milnet.ca:
http://milnet.ca/forums/threads/120633/post-1391898.html#msg1391898

Mark
Ottawa
 
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