Chinese Military Considerations for the Effective Use of Evidence in Public Opinion Warfare During Cognitive Domain Operations



 In the operational chain of public opinion warfare in the cognitive domain, the collection and application of evidence is a fundamental link of great value, and is an important starting point for the preparation of cognitive domain construction at all levels. Combining the special background of public opinion warfare in the cognitive domain to study evidence, accurately grasp its characteristics and laws, continuously study strategies and usage, and improve the effective application of evidence in public opinion warfare in the cognitive domain, it is of great reference significance for our army to fight the proactive battle of public opinion warfare in the cognitive domain in the future.

Keywords: cognitive domain; public opinion warfare; evidence

With the formation of the three major operational dimensions of the modern information battlefield, namely the physical domain, information domain and cognitive domain, cognitive domain operations have received increasing attention in the context of future intelligent hybrid warfare. Cognitive domain operations refer to a type of operations that directly acts on the brain’s cognition through special means to influence its emotions, motivations, judgments and behaviors, and even achieve the purpose of controlling the brain. As a cognitive carrier, the brain may become the main battlefield of future wars, and the right to control the brain will soon become the key to cognitive domain operations and the highest level of war control. In this sense, cognitive domain operations are cognitive confrontation actions that influence the decision-making and behavior of the target audience by influencing their cognition in order to achieve the strategic goals of national security. In the meantime, evidence has become an important factor affecting cognition, and evidence game is a basic link that must be paid attention to in planning and implementing public opinion warfare in the cognitive domain. According to the general consensus of the legal community, evidence refers to the basis for determining the facts of an event in accordance with the rules of litigation. The evidence of public opinion warfare referred to in this article is derived from this. It can be seen that only by grasping evidence more accurately and timely and using evidence more prudently and appropriately can we more effectively destroy the enemy’s cognition, consolidate our own cognition, and shape the cognition of neutral forces, and provide effective support for the comprehensive victory of public opinion warfare in the cognitive domain.

1. A deep understanding of the three values ​​of evidence in the public opinion war in the cognitive domain is the prerequisite for the effective use of evidence

Information is the basic “ammunition” of public opinion warfare in the cognitive domain. As one of the ammunition, evidence has great value and can be examined from the following three dimensions.

1. Evidence is an indispensable cognitive weapon in the public opinion war in the cognitive domain and has fighting value.

To examine the evidence of public opinion warfare in the cognitive domain is to explore the essence of fact-finding in public opinion warfare from the cognitive level. The cognitive domain takes the human brain as the main combat space. Evidence, as a trace left by a certain “past fact”, undoubtedly exists regardless of whether people can find it. However, some evidence is specially proposed and emphasized at certain times, and its purpose must be to prove certain facts, cater to certain views, and influence certain attitudes. In fact, it is the process of proving the subject’s own cognition shaping, viewpoint presentation and value dissemination. With the help of the cognitive justification theory of contemporary epistemic evidentialism, it is demonstrated that there is an unignorable logical connection between belief attitude and cognitive justification: the epistemological rationality of belief attitude depends on the quality of evidence possessed by the believer at that time. It can be said that the value of evidence in public opinion warfare in the cognitive domain is highly consistent with the weapon context of informationized cognitive warfare. High-quality evidence can influence cognition in a high-quality manner and is an indispensable and irreplaceable weapon of struggle. This “basis of proof” is not only a spear and a sharp sword to strike and change the enemy’s cognition and make cognitive attacks in the public opinion warfare in the cognitive domain, but also a solid shield to guide and consolidate one’s own cognition and make cognitive protection.

(II) Evidence is the basis for the value guidance of public opinion warfare in the cognitive domain and has guiding value

Authenticity is the essential characteristic of facts, but not the essential characteristic of evidence. Evidence is not equivalent to objective facts. It can be said that there are no false facts, but there are false evidence. According to the rules of evidence law, facts proved by evidence are possible facts, not necessarily inevitable. The result it produces may be a “wrong” result, but this so-called “wrong” is still a legitimate result in legal procedures. To be precise, although it is wrong, it is legitimate. Based on this dialectical logic, the evidential facts recognized by public opinion warfare in the cognitive domain are not equivalent to objective facts in themselves, and there may be differences between the evidential facts and objective facts. Evidence may be true or false, or half true and half false. It does not pursue an absolutely true and correct result, but a “legitimate” result that can influence cognition. Through these cognitive elements presented in the form of evidence, because of the “legitimate” label, they are more persuasive and authoritative, and have the guiding value of influencing cognition and behavior.

(III) Evidence is the basis for completing the special mission of public opinion warfare in the cognitive domain and has winning value

As the basis for completing the special mission of public opinion warfare in the cognitive domain, the winning value of evidence should not be underestimated. First, the effective use of evidence can minimize the deviation in factual characterization of public opinion warfare in the cognitive domain. By sorting out and integrating evidence materials, making clear logical connections between scattered and multi-perspective evidence, constructing a chain of evidence that is favorable to us and pointing to clear factual characterization, we can accurately associate and interpret objective facts. Preventing cognitive bias and passive public opinion caused by unclear and inaccurate factual characterization can improve the accuracy and clarity of fact identification. Secondly, the effective use of evidence can minimize the strategic decision-making cost of public opinion warfare in the cognitive domain. As the saying goes, words are not enough. Without the effective support of evidence, public opinion warfare in the cognitive domain will be separated from the objective basis for the generation of combat effectiveness and become a complete self-talk. Its strategic decision-making efficiency will inevitably decrease and the decision-making cost will inevitably soar. Third, the effective use of evidence can minimize the legal risk of public opinion in the cognitive domain. The main sources of legal risks in the cognitive domain of public opinion are the deviation of values, the lack of legitimacy, and the indifference of humanitarianism… In this regard, through scenario pre-setting, targeted evidence lists, active storage of evidence materials, and reasonable and rational construction of the use of evidence, we can achieve a certain degree of risk warning, risk avoidance, and risk resolution.

2. Accurately grasping the three major shifts of evidence in the public opinion war under the cognitive domain is the key to the effective use of evidence

Compared with the physical and information domains, evidence in the cognitive domain presents distinct characteristics in the public opinion war. In terms of the purpose of proof, it guarantees the realization of policy and strategic goals and serves the political intention of the public opinion war in the cognitive domain; in terms of the means of proof, truth and falsehood are often intertwined, creating many situations where the truth and falsehood are unclear; in terms of the content of proof, it must be able to clearly, conclusively and promptly prove the justice and legality of our actions and the meaninglessness and illegality of the enemy. It is mainly reflected in three changes.

1. Shifting from “restoring the truth” to “influencing cognition” and highlighting cognitive attributes with goal orientation

In the public opinion war under the cognitive domain, the fundamental purpose of evidence has shifted from “approaching the truth, restoring facts, and promoting objective scene reconstruction” to “influencing the cognition of the target audience and realizing national security interests”. From the initial objective basis for reflecting the battlefield situation to the powerful weapon of public opinion war under the cognitive domain, it is neither simply an objective fact to be proved nor just a material and means to prove facts. Evidence in the public opinion war under the cognitive domain must have a clear position. Before proving, it is necessary to first clarify whose point of view is proved? Whose facts are proved? Whose interests are protected? It is absolutely impossible to be value-free without its basic position. Evidence serves political purposes and strategic intentions, guides the target audience to move towards the established cognitive goals, and accepts, identifies, and shapes the corresponding argumentation conclusions. Its collection and use are all determined by strategic determination, combat intentions, and battlefield situation. Whether it is true or false, good or bad, it must serve the overall strategic situation and needs to be judged in combination with combat effectiveness.

2. Shifting from “raw collection” to “scientific compilation” to assist cognitive decision-making with intelligent means

Cognition is the process of actively processing information, including three links: information input, processing and output. Corresponding to the evidence action of public opinion warfare in the cognitive domain, it is to collect evidence, analyze and compile evidence, and make decisions and use evidence. It must be recognized that the public opinion warfare in the cognitive domain in the digital era is essentially a strategic action to manipulate information and shape cognition in the public opinion field, and the quality requirements of evidence materials are more stringent. If there is insufficient understanding of evidence, and evidence collection is simply regarded as taking photos and recording scenes, it is far from meeting the requirements of the new digital cognitive domain public opinion battlefield environment. It must be assisted by intelligent means and transformed into scientific evidence collection, analysis and compilation. Scientific evidence can, to a certain extent, get rid of human dependence on experience consciousness, eliminate the ambiguity, fragmentation and one-sidedness of human cognition under certain conditions, and assist cognitive domain combat commanders to make more accurate command decisions. In reality, there is indeed a phenomenon that the evidence is true, but the cognition generated is false. Only through a series of intelligent compilation work such as collection, classification, compilation, comparison, verification, reasoning, judgment, and integration of evidence information perceived across the entire domain, and using the scientific presentation of evidence to influence cognition in a targeted manner, can the process of evidence information fusion and command decision-making results be made corresponding and unified, making accurate decision-making the key to winning the war of public opinion in the cognitive domain.

3. Shift from “objective presentation” to “emotional resonance” to prove quality and improve cognitive effectiveness

In the cognitive domain, it is far from enough to simply record objective phenomena as evidence in the public opinion war. It also needs to have special guidance and appeal in order to form a strong communication power and influence, aiming to stimulate certain emotions of the target audience and trigger specific cognition. It is necessary to shift from “objective presentation” to “emotional resonance”. Only by awakening the empathy experience of the target audience through sophisticated and appropriate evidence presentation can the expected proof effect be produced. For example, a bloody knife cannot directly support or oppose any proposition by itself. Unless someone perceives the knife, forms a feeling state, and associates it with other evidence, it can produce a proof effect. Therefore, the evidence of public opinion warfare in the cognitive domain must be perceptible. Whether it is true evidence or false evidence, these evidences are not responsible for restoring the truth of the facts, nor are they used only to prove the legality or illegality of a certain action or behavior. They are intended to shock the target audience with thoughts and generate emotional waves, and play cognitive effects such as shaking the morale of the army, inspiring morale, gaining support from many people, inspiring sympathy, guiding public opinion, and breaking the enemy’s spirit, ensuring that the reason can be said and spread. Otherwise, no matter how good the proof logic is, its effectiveness will be greatly reduced due to the lack of communication and appeal, and it may even be ineffective in the fierce cognitive game.

3. Innovative evidence in the three ways of public opinion warfare in the cognitive domain is the path to effective use of evidence

In the public opinion war in the cognitive domain, evidence is sometimes an offensive weapon, sometimes a means of deterrence, and sometimes a tool for bargaining… How to cleverly deploy troops and gain the initiative on this battlefield? It is necessary to judge the situation, deeply study the techniques, present accurately, and implement them purposefully, systematically, and strategically. According to the logical order of evidence participation from weak to strong, the understanding of evidence from shallow to deep, and the evidence tactics from passive to active, there are three ways to use evidence: objective, directional, and strategic.

1. Attaching importance to the objective use of evidence in public opinion warfare in the cognitive domain

Evidence has incomparable persuasiveness, and public opinion warfare in the cognitive domain must attach importance to speaking with evidence. The most basic approach is to solidly promote the objective collection and use of evidence. First, it is necessary to discover and extract evidence from a large amount of materials to preliminarily solve the problem of evidence admissibility. Secondly, the evidence collected must withstand the test and judgment of public opinion warfare in the cognitive domain to solve the problem of evidence availability. The basic logical line of evidence collection and use is: objectively obtain evidence materials – based on the acquired evidence materials, sort out, match, integrate, and analyze which existing evidence materials can prove objective facts that have an impact on cognition – solve the problem of “what can be proved”. If objective evidence collection is not done well, it is easy for the enemy to take it out of context, generalize, and even confuse right and wrong. On the one hand, through the objective presentation of original evidence, the illegality and provocation of the other party’s behavior are exposed, the legitimacy and justice of our actions are explained, the truth of the incident is intuitively and powerfully clarified, and the psychological defense of the other party is effectively disintegrated, the other party’s fighting will is shaken, and a strong psychological offensive and deterrence effect is formed; on the other hand, it effectively boosts our military morale, inspires fighting spirit, and enhances psychological protection in the cognitive battlefield. In short, we must strive to objectively make good use of “real evidence that can gain the initiative” and expose “false evidence in the hands of evidence dealers.”

2. Strengthening the guiding use of evidence in public opinion warfare in the cognitive domain

It is necessary to fully realize that the probative value of evidence needs to be realized through interpretation, which leaves sufficient space for guiding the collection and use of evidence in the public opinion war under the cognitive domain. On the basis of the objective collection and use of evidence, through more proactive reverse thinking, another logical line of evidence collection and use can be found: first clarify what facts need to be proved in the public opinion war under the cognitive domain – then consider how to compile and interpret the existing evidence materials in a biased manner according to the demand orientation – solve the problem of “how to interpret and use the evidence materials”. Under the demand-oriented role, by actively presetting the facts to be proved, consciously do a good job of evidence association and effectiveness interpretation. It can be said that the process of compiling objective original evidence is the process of evidence interpretation. Scattered evidence materials, after being fully interpreted and compiled with subjective intentions, will form a closed evidence chain with directionality. These directional evidence products guide the audience from “seeing” evidence to “understanding” evidence, which is a weapon that can influence the generation of combat effectiveness in the public opinion war under the cognitive domain. In fact, the party with a stronger ability to interpret evidence selfishly is often more able to dominate the development of the battle.

3. Strategic Use of Evidence in Public Opinion Warfare under the Design Cognitive Domain

The ultimate target of public opinion warfare in the cognitive domain is cognitive ability, and the dominant factor for winning the battle will naturally shift to cognition. Therefore, the high-skilled use of evidence in public opinion warfare in the cognitive domain must be achieved with the help of the systematic vision and strategic thinking of strategists. The logical line of evidence collection and use here is: consider evidence as an indispensable key element of public opinion warfare in the cognitive domain and incorporate it into the overall strategic planning link – preset a list of key evidence according to different scenarios – actively create conditions to obtain key evidence – solve the problem of “how to achieve the strategic intention and combat determination of public opinion warfare in the cognitive domain from the evidence level”. Under special conditions, even through sophisticated arrangements, with active and proactive “creative design” to lay out the fog of evidence, prompt the enemy to reveal its shortcomings, expose its weaknesses, and make actions and reactions that are beneficial to us, forming a complete and conclusive chain of evidence, so as to achieve the purpose of releasing special information, propaganda against the enemy’s mind, political and diplomatic hints, etc., consume the enemy’s cognitive ability, disrupt its thinking, interfere with its judgment, and hinder its actions. In particular, we must develop an awareness of strategies and tactics in the game of evidence in the context of cognitive domain public opinion warfare, select, choose, combine, assemble, switch among various types of evidence… flexibly deploy and skillfully present them, give full play to the potential of evidence use, contain, curb, and counter enemy actions, and expand our own space for action. The key to applying evidence well lies in one’s heart.

(Author’s unit: Political Science Academy of National Defense University)








檢視認知域下輿論戰的證據,就是要從認知層面來探究輿論戰事實認定的本質。認知域以人腦為主要作戰空間。證據,作為某種「過去事實」留下的痕跡,不管人們能否發現,它們無疑都是存在的。但某些證據在某些時候被特別提出和強調,其目的必然是為了佐證某些事實、迎合某些觀點、影響某些態度,其實就是論證主體自身認知塑造、觀點呈現和價值傳播的過程。借助當代認知證據主義(Epistemic Evidentialism)的認知證成理論,論證信念態度與認知證成之間存在著不可忽視的邏輯聯繫:信念態度在認識論上的合理程度,取決於相信者當時所擁有的證據的品質。可以說,認知域下輿論戰的證據價值與資訊化認知作戰的武器脈絡高度契合,高品質的證據能夠高品質影響認知,是不可或缺不可取代的鬥爭武器。這種“證明的根據”,在認知域下輿論戰中,既是打擊、改變敵方認知,做好認知攻擊的長矛利劍;也是引導、鞏固己方認知,做好認知防護的堅固盾牌。























Chinese Military Analysis of Japan’s Space and Cyberspace Deterrence Strategy



The development of new military forces is changing the style of warfare. After years of development, space (also known as outer space) and cyberspace (hereinafter referred to as cyberspace) forces have transformed from conceptual forces to real forces. How to use these two new forces has become a key research topic for major powers in the world. In March 2024, the Security Research Group of the Sasakawa Peace Foundation of Japan released a research report entitled “War 3.0: Fundamental Changes in War” (hereinafter referred to as the “Report”), which explored how to use space and cyberspace to achieve strategic deterrence from the perspective of maintaining Japan’s national security. It also proposed a typical scenario of cyberspace confrontation against the background of an emergency in the Taiwan Strait, showing Japan’s thinking on the use of combat forces in emerging fields. The main contents are summarized as follows for readers.


War 3.0 is coming

The report believes that during the Cold War, the boundaries between civilians, the state and the military were clear, and the economic dependence between the two sides was low. This was the era of War 1.0. After the Cold War, globalization accelerated, and in 2001, the era of the war on terror began. The main body of the confrontation became state and non-state actors, which was the era of War 2.0. Around 2010, the confrontation between major powers reappeared. Due to the high degree of economic globalization, “war” occurred more in dimensions other than military. The conflict between Russia and Ukraine shows that in modern warfare, other means are becoming as important as military means. At the same time, commercial companies are also more involved in the research and development and use of emerging military technologies, and the government’s control over military power has been weakened. Since then, a new concept can be used to describe modern warfare, namely War 3.0.

As long as war occurs in the context of globalization, the characteristics of War 3.0 will appear. In the era of War 3.0, the target of deterrence is mainly state actors, but the specific form of conflict may be similar to hybrid warfare or conventional warfare. When formulating deterrence strategies in the space and cyberspace domains, both types of conflict should be taken into account. It is necessary to recognize that emerging domain capabilities are multipliers of traditional capabilities. The significance of competing for control in emerging domains lies in enhancing one’s own physical forces such as land, sea, and air forces or weakening the physical forces of opponents.

The report points out that using emerging field forces to carry out attacks can cause no tangible physical damage, is conducive to conflict management, and is the best tool for gray zone operations. Japan currently faces two main problems. One is that the emerging field forces owned by law enforcement agencies are not in line with mission requirements. The other is that it needs to consider how to use emerging field forces to achieve effective conflict management.


Strategic Deterrence in Emerging Fields

The report uses traditional deterrence theory for analysis and concludes that space and cyberspace have five common characteristics: difficult situational awareness, high defense difficulty, low attack threshold, mixed actors, and lack of international codes of conduct. Easy to attack and difficult to defend are the common characteristics of these two fields, so it is difficult to achieve effective strategic deterrence. In this regard, action should be taken in four aspects: First, improve situational awareness capabilities so that when problems occur, the cause of the failure can be quickly determined, the attacker can be identified, and the damage effect can be evaluated when counterattacked. Second, improve resilience to ensure that the loss of some functions will not cause the entire system to become disabled. Third, strengthen offensive capabilities, which can be used to attack in a certain field, or to use means in other fields to conduct cross-domain attacks. Fourth, achieve arms control cooperation between countries and build trust, formulate codes of conduct, etc.


Strengthening deterrence in air and space

1. The connotation of air and space control continues to be enriched

The report believes that the air and space can control the entire battlefield. In order to compete for air and space dominance, various types of equipment are constantly updated, combat systems are becoming more and more complex, and the scope of operations is becoming wider and wider. In combat, both sides often focus on the “find, locate, track, decide, engage, and assess (Find Fix Track Targeting Engage Assess, F2T2EA)” full kill chain, and simultaneously confront in emerging fields such as space, cyberspace, and electromagnetic space, which greatly expands the connotation of traditional dominance. In future high-end wars, the side with a higher level of space, cyberspace, and electromagnetic space capabilities may have an overwhelming advantage in overall combat capabilities.

2. How to exert the deterrent function of space power

The report emphasizes that space systems play an important role in intelligence collection, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR), communications, positioning, navigation and timing (PNT), missile warning, environmental monitoring, etc., and also provide increasingly important support for the use of nuclear and conventional forces. In order to form a strong space deterrence, first, we must possess and demonstrate the corresponding capabilities, mainly the resilience, defense, counter-retaliation and situational awareness capabilities of the space system. Second, we must show the enemy our determination to use retaliatory capabilities. Third, we must form a cross-domain deterrence to ensure the security of the entire space system. In addition, systems in other fields such as land, sea and air must be able to supplement some of the functions of the space system. In the face of enemy attacks on our satellites, we must retaliate not only from space, but also through land, sea, air and cyberspace.

As space systems play an increasingly important role in Japan’s national defense, we will further enhance our deterrence against hostile offensive actions. While improving the resilience of space assets, we will attach great importance to the effective use of commercial space services.

3. How to enhance the deterrent effect of Japan’s aerospace power

The report points out that Japan should attach importance to cross-domain coordination of sea, land, air and space forces, especially to strengthen cooperation with the United States. It is necessary to closely monitor the surrounding airspace, use aircraft to perform denial missions when the situation escalates, and take active defense measures to prevent missile attacks. It is necessary to strengthen the construction of Self-Defense Force bases and realize the mutual use of air bases between Japan and the United States. Japan is surrounded by the sea, and it is necessary to attach importance to developing the ability to use air means to strike maritime targets to ensure the security of the homeland.

Faced with the vast Indo-Pacific region, it is difficult for Japan to accurately grasp the regional situation by relying solely on its own aerospace power. It is necessary to share intelligence information through multilateral cooperation and build a Common Operational Picture (COP) in the Indo-Pacific region to accurately and comprehensively grasp the regional situation and have a deterrent effect on potential enemies. It is necessary to strengthen cooperation with countries other than the United States, especially Australia. Japan, the United States and Australia should establish joint ammunition and fuel depots in their respective countries. In the field of space, Japan will expand cooperation in hosting payloads. If it can cooperate with European countries, then future attacks on Japanese satellites can be regarded as attacks on multiple countries. It is becoming increasingly important to make full use of the power of allies and use their aerospace power to achieve deterrence goals.


Strengthening Deterrence in Cyberspace

1. Characteristics of Cyberspace Operations

The report believes that cyberspace has an increasing impact on the course of war, and cyberspace combat capabilities can even deter the occurrence of an entire conflict. Cyberspace security plays an important role in protecting various systems from cyber attacks, ensuring that confidential information is not leaked, and ensuring the normal operation of other systems such as critical infrastructure. It is also of great significance for cognitive domain protection.

There are two main characteristics of cyberspace at present. First, the boundary between military and civilian is blurred. The potential of military application of Internet is constantly emerging. In the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, the artillery combat management system (GIS Art for Artillery, GIS ARTA) used by Ukraine is to send data through drones and smartphones to determine the target location and launch attacks, which is very effective. Second, the security concept based on closed system is outdated. Even with physical isolation, it is impossible to completely prevent attacks. Cyberspace is easy to attack but difficult to defend, and the offense and defense are asymmetric. In addition, cyberspace operations can control the rhythm of conflict escalation in a low-intensity form, and can also be upgraded to a powerful weapon with high-intensity offensiveness after the official outbreak of military conflict.

2. Developing emerging technologies to enhance cyber warfare capabilities

The report points out that the development of emerging technologies will continue to change the rules of warfare, and the Japanese Ministry of Defense has begun to study the use of cloud computing to build a basic computing environment. It plans to build a diversified network environment, use Starlink satellites and 5G networks to provide Internet services, and consider enabling the new Internet communication protocol QUIC (Quick UDP Internet Connection). The first quantum computer has been developed, and related research on anti-quantum cryptography has been carried out. At the same time, it also pays close attention to the specific ways of combining artificial intelligence with cyber warfare.

3. Ways to strengthen cyber deterrence

The report emphasizes that the development of artificial intelligence technology and the adjustment of the network component supply chain are two uncertain factors. Japan should focus on improving its cyber warfare capabilities from the following aspects: (1) vigorously promote intelligence information sharing; (2) build active defense systems; (3) introduce zero trust and risk management frameworks; (4) establish the ability to attack adversary networks; (5) accelerate legislation in the field of cybersecurity; (6) expand the scale of talent training and increase support for commercial enterprises. By carrying out the above work, Japan can achieve early detection and response to cyber attacks. Even if it encounters a cyber attack, it can be discovered, processed and recovered at an early stage to ensure the resilience of the system to continue to operate. In addition, when Japan is attacked, it should coordinate actions with the US military. In peacetime, joint training should be strengthened so that it can carry out joint operations with the Cyber ​​Mission Force (CMF) composed of relevant forces of the US Cyber ​​Command.

Responsible for directing, coordinating and conducting cyber operations


Conception of cyberspace combat scenarios

The report describes a basic scenario of cyber warfare between the Red and Blue sides, with the Taiwan Strait incident as the background, and puts forward the following important viewpoints: First, when the Blue side has an absolute advantage, the Blue side should focus on taking defensive actions to achieve deterrence. When the forces of the two sides tend to be balanced, the Blue side should actively take offensive actions to seize the initiative. Second, the Blue side can launch cyber attacks around the Red side’s observation, adjustment, decision-making, and action (OODA) links to weaken the Red side’s military capabilities, especially its maritime and landing combat capabilities, and carry out “anti-military cyber attack missions.” When necessary, strike the Red side’s social infrastructure to weaken its overall strength. At the same time, take cyber attacks to induce and divide public opinion, weaken the Red side’s willingness to take action, and carry out “anti-value cyber attack missions.” Third, in the anti-military cyber attack mission, the Blue side can attack the Red side’s aircraft, and can also take measures such as data pollution, deception cloud, and communication network interruption to attack the Red side’s command and control system. In the action of attacking the civilian network system, cyber attacks can be carried out on key entities of railway and ship operations in the Red coastal areas and key infrastructure such as the power grid in coastal metropolises that support social and economic systems. There are also options for attacking Red Team financial systems, media servers, and water and gas supply networks.

In order to deal with possible cyber attacks from the Red side in the event of an emergency in the Taiwan Strait, Japan should do the following: First, adopt an active defense strategy, require commercial operators to share information with the government, and introduce artificial intelligence to improve cyber situational awareness and network resilience. Second, introduce a large-scale data forensics platform to identify the authenticity of massive image data and counter false information. Third, give priority to countermeasures against domestic cyber attacks, effectively defend the networks of defense, government departments, law enforcement agencies and private enterprises through various active cyber defense measures, and deal with cognitive domain actions against the Japanese public.



The report proposed the concept of War 3.0 and launched a series of discussions on achieving cyberspace and space deterrence. While suggesting strengthening its own relevant capacity building, it repeatedly emphasized the need to strengthen cooperation with the United States, especially with countries related to the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (QUAD) and AUKUS. With Japan’s application to join AUKUS on April 25, 2024, the Asia-Pacific version of the “mini-NATO” alliance has taken shape, and regional peace and stability will be severely impacted.

Disclaimer: This article is reprinted from Military High-Tech Online, the original author is Shi Honglin. The content of the article is the original author’s personal opinion. This public account is translated/reprinted only for sharing and conveying different opinions. If you have any objections, please contact us!

Reprinted from Military High-Tech Online

Author: Shi Honglin

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新領域軍事力量的發展正在改變戰爭樣式,其中太空(也稱為外層空間)和網路空間(以下簡稱網空)力量經過多年的發展,已由概念力量轉變為現實力量。如何利用這兩種新質力量,已成為世界各主要強國重點研究的內容。 2024年3月日本笹川和平財團安全研究小組發布研究報告《戰爭3.0:戰爭的根本變化》(以下簡稱《報告》),從維護日本國家安全的角度出發,探討如何利用太空和網空實現戰略威懾等問題,並以台海突發事件為背景,提出了一個網空對抗的典型場景,展示了日本在運用新興領域作戰力量上的思考。現將其主要內容整理如下,以颯讀者。



《報告》認為,在冷戰時期,平民、國家和軍隊之間的界線很清晰,對峙雙方經濟依賴度較低,此時是戰爭1.0時代。冷戰後全球化加速發展,2001年進入反恐戰爭時代,對抗的主體變成國家與非國家行為體,此時是戰爭2.0時代。 2010年前後大國對抗再次出現,由於經濟全球化發展程度較高,「戰爭」較多發生在軍事以外的維度。俄烏衝突顯示在現代戰爭中,其他手段正變得與軍事手段同等重要。同時,商業公司也更參與新興軍事技術的研發和使用,政府對軍事力量的控製程度受到了削弱。自此可以用一個新的概念來描述現代戰爭,即戰爭3.0。









《報告》認為,空中和太空可以瞰整個戰場,為爭奪空天制權,各類裝備不斷更新,作戰系統越來越複雜,作戰範圍也越來越寬廣。在作戰中,雙方往往會圍繞「發現、定位、追蹤、決策、交戰、評估(Find Fix Track Targeting Engage Assess,F2T2EA)」全殺傷鏈各環節,在太空、網空、電磁空間等新興領域同時進行對抗,大大拓展了傳統制權的內涵。在未來高端戰爭中,利用太空、網空和電磁空間能力水準較高的一方,可能會在整體作戰能力上擁有壓倒性的優勢。

《報告》強調,太空系統在情報收集、監視和偵察(Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance,ISR),通信,定位、導航和授時(Positioning, Navigation and Timing, PNT),導彈預警,環境監測等方面發揮著重要作用,也為使用核武力量和常規力量提供越來越重要的支持。為了形成強大的太空威懾,一要擁有並展現對應能力,主要是太空系統的復原力、防禦力、反制報復能力以及態勢感知能力。二要向敵方展示使用報復能力的決心。三要形成跨域威懾以確保太空全系統安全。此外,陸海空等其他領域系統要能補充太空系統的部分功能,面對敵方對己方衛星的攻擊,不僅要從太空報復,還要透過陸海空和網空進行報復。




面對廣袤的印太地區,日本僅靠自身的空天力量,難以準確掌握區域態勢,要透過多邊合作分享情報訊息,建構印太地區通用作戰態勢圖(Common Operational Picture, COP),以精準全面地掌握地區態勢,對潛在敵人產生嚇阻效果。要加強與美國以外的國家,特別是澳洲的合作。日本、美國和澳洲應在各自國家建立聯合彈藥和燃料庫。在太空領域,日本將拓展託管有效載荷合作,如能和歐洲國家合作,那麼未來攻擊日本衛星的行為,將可以被視為對多個國家的攻擊。要充分借助盟友力量,利用其空天力量達成威懾目的,這一點正變得越來越重要。





目前網空主要有兩個特點,一是軍民界線模糊。網路的軍事應用潛力不斷顯現,在俄烏衝突中,烏克蘭使用的砲兵作戰管理系統(GIS Art for Artillery, GIS ARTA),就是透過無人機和智慧型手機,發送資料確定目標位置並發動攻擊,且非常有效。二是基於封閉系統的安全觀念已經過時。即便是進行物理隔離,也不可能完全防止被攻擊,網空易攻難守,攻防呈現不對稱特徵。此外,網空作戰既可以低強度形式控制衝突升級的節奏,也可以在正式爆發軍事衝突後,升級為具有高強度攻擊性的強大武器。

《報告》指出,新興技術的發展將持續改變作戰規則,日本防衛省已開始研究使用雲端運算建構基本運算環境。計畫建置多樣化網路環境,使用「星鏈」衛星和5G網路提供網路服務,考慮啟用新的網路通訊協定QUIC(Quick UDP Internet Connection)。已研發首台量子計算機,並進行反量子密碼的相關研究。同時,也高度關注人工智慧與網路戰結合的具體方式。


《報告》強調,人工智慧技術的發展和網路部件供應鏈的調整是兩個不確定的影響因素。日本應著重從以下幾點提升網路戰能力:(1)大力促進情報資訊共享;(2)建構主動防禦系統;(3)引入零信任和風險管理框架;(4)建立攻擊對手網路的能力; (5)加速網路安全領域立法;(6)擴大人才培育規模,增加對商業企業的支持。透過進行以上工作,日本可以實現提前發現和應對網路攻擊。即使遭遇網路攻擊,也可在早期階段發現、處理和恢復,確保系統繼續運作的彈性。此外,當日本受到攻擊時,要與美軍協調行動。平時要加強聯合訓練,以便能夠與由美國網路司令部相關部隊組成網路任務部隊(The Cyber​​ Mission Force, CMF)實施聯合行動。



《報告》以台海突發事件為背景,描述了一個紅藍雙方網路戰的基本場景,提出了以下幾個重要觀點:一是當藍方擁有絕對優勢時,藍方應側重於採取防禦行動實現威懾。當雙方力量趨於平衡時,藍方則應積極採取攻擊行動以爭取主動權。二是藍方可以圍繞紅方觀察、調整、決策、行動(Observe Orient Decide Act, OODA)的各環節展開網絡攻擊,削弱紅方軍事能力,特別是海上作戰和登陸作戰能力,開展「反軍事網絡攻擊任務」。在必要時候打擊紅方社會基礎設施,削弱其整體實力。同時,採取網路攻擊誘導和分裂公眾輿論,削弱紅方採取行動的意願,進行「反價值網路攻擊任務」。第三是在反軍事網路攻擊任務中,藍方可以攻擊紅方飛機,還可以採取資料污染、欺騙雲以及通訊網路中斷等措施,攻擊紅方指控系統。在攻擊民用網路系統的行動中,可以對紅方沿海地區鐵路和船舶運營的關鍵實體以及支持社會和經濟系統的沿海大城市電網等關鍵基礎設施進行網路攻擊。還可以選擇攻擊紅方金融系統、媒體伺服器以及供水和天然氣供應網路。



該報告提出了戰爭3.0的概念,圍繞實現網空和太空威懾展開了一系列論述,在建議加強自身相關能力建設的同時,多次強調要加強與美國,特別是四方安全對話(Quadrilateral Security Dialogue, QUAD)和奧庫斯(AUKUS)相關國家的合作。隨著2024年4月25日日本申請加入“奧庫斯”,亞太版的“小北約”聯盟已現雛形,地區和平穩定將受到嚴重衝擊。





國際技術經濟研究所(IITE)成立於1985年11月,是隸屬於國務院發展研究中心的非營利研究機構,主要功能是研究我國經濟、科技社會發展中的重大政策性、策略性、前瞻性問題,追蹤分析世界科技、經濟發展態勢,為中央和相關部會提供決策諮詢服務。 「全球技術地圖」為國際技術經濟研究所官方微信帳號,致力於向大眾傳遞尖端技術資訊與科技創新洞見。



Chinese Military Developing Winning Mechanisms of Cognitive Confrontation Warfare



As an important form of modern warfare, cognitive warfare takes cognitive domain as its main combat field, strategy and technology application as its main combat means, and influencing and shaping the opponent’s thinking and cognition as its combat purpose. It has a unique winning mechanism and operating rules. In-depth research on the winning mechanism of cognitive warfare is a basic project to grasp the initiative of thinking and cognition and win modern cognitive warfare.

  The contemporary connotation of the winning mechanism of cognitive warfare

  The winning mechanism of cognitive warfare is based on the revolutionary development and widespread application of media technology in cognitive technology, is adapted to the practical requirements of integrated joint operations, and is in line with the characteristics of the era of the integrated development of mechanization, informatization, and intelligence. It has rich contemporary connotations.

  Win with knowledge. As a solid basis and powerful weapon for human beings to understand and transform the world, thinking and cognition fundamentally affect the quality of decision-making, influence strategies and tactics, restrict military morale, and determine the process and outcome of war. It is the most fundamental support and the deepest force of war confrontation. In other words, war confrontation is ultimately a game and confrontation of thinking and cognition. Mastering the right to control cognition means mastering the initiative in war to a large extent. Losing the right to control cognition will put you in a passive position in the war. Obtaining higher and stronger cognitive control is the key to defeating a strong enemy. Finding ways to master cognitive control and then seize comprehensive battlefield control, so as to obtain the greatest victory at the lowest cost, is an important mechanism and internal law of modern warfare, especially cognitive warfare.

  Technology is the key. A significant feature of modern cognitive warfare that is different from previous cognitive warfare is that the elements of strategy are gradually reduced and the role is gradually reduced, while the application of technology is more frequent and its role is more prominent. In particular, with the deep involvement of information technology and artificial intelligence, modern cognitive warfare pays more attention to the competition of technical hard power. The previous soul-stirring and mysterious strategic confrontation seems to be giving way to today’s head-on technical competition. Efforts to seek breakthroughs, master advantages, and take the initiative in cognitive technologies such as big data, cloud computing, information networks, artificial intelligence, brain control, brain control, blockchain, high-performance communications, and the metaverse have become the key focus of countries’ competitive development to gain cognitive advantages and defeat powerful enemies.

  Hidden is the best. A prominent feature of cognitive warfare is the hidden use of strategies, that is, through hidden methods and means such as information suppression, data confusion, hiding the truth and showing the false, and scenario construction, the opponent’s thinking and cognition are subtly influenced, controlled, and shaped. It can be said that “hidden” is the main color, main melody, and main channel. Hidden purpose, hidden means, and hidden actions run through all aspects of the entire process of cognitive attack and defense. In the cognitive perspective, whoever masters more advanced strategies, more flexible tactics, and more hidden tactics can more effectively act on the opponent in cognitive attack and defense confrontation, thus being in a higher cognitive dimension.

  Integration is the basis. If cognitive warfare lacks the support of specific military operations in the material domain, it will never produce the good effects of doubting, confusing, deterring and defeating the enemy. Cognitive warfare should never be an isolated operation. Only by integrating cognitive offense and defense into the integrated joint combat chain, closely combining it with physical domain military operations, and closely integrating it with the entire combat system, can the military forces in different fields be closely combined, mutually supported, and organically integrated, and can the combat effectiveness be fully exerted.

  Practical requirements for the winning mechanism of cognitive warfare

  The winning mechanism of war determines the form and method of military force construction and application, and has a mandatory and stabilizing influence on war practice. The winning mechanism of cognitive warfare inherently regulates the form and method of cognitive warfare, and puts forward new requirements for the construction of cognitive warfare forces.

  Take the control of cognition as the core of winning cognitive warfare. Firmly grasp the key of the control of cognition, insist on the two-way efforts of wisdom and technology, strive to seize the commanding heights of thinking and cognition, and seize the control of cognitive operations. Deeply promote the innovation of the theory of control of cognition, integrate high-quality resources, increase funding, follow up and study typical cases of cognitive operations at home and abroad, conscientiously summarize practical experience in all aspects, and combine the specific reality of our army to form a theoretical system with contemporary, leading and unique characteristics as soon as possible; strengthen the basic construction of training facilities, equipment, venues, and talent teams, build a number of special training venues based on the existing comprehensive training grounds, and carry out base-based professional training; carry out the drills of the tactics of control of cognition, incorporate cognitive warfare into daily combat readiness training, into specific combat action plans, simulate important combat operations, imagine major combat targets, preset actual combat scenarios, and practice hard in an environment close to actual combat to form the actual combat capability of real combat, good attack and defense, and control and control.

  Take science and technology as the key to cognitive confrontation. Science and technology are core combat power, core cognitive power, and the core element of cognitive power. Strengthen the awareness of winning with science and technology, deeply understand the basic supporting role of science and technology as one of the two major means of modern cognitive warfare, “strategy + technology”, consciously put cognitive technology innovation in an important position in the strategy of strengthening the army with science and technology, and make efforts to carry out independent innovation in cognitive technology; grasp the breakthrough of core key technologies, focus on artificial intelligence, brain control technology, brain control technology, situational awareness technology, high-performance communication technology, metaverse and other basic technologies related to cognitive warfare, consolidate the scientific and technological foundation of cognitive attack and defense confrontation, and firmly grasp the destiny in our own hands; explore distinctive innovation paths, adapt to my country’s national conditions, military conditions and technical realities, explore innovation paths that suit us, form distinctive technical routes, strive to master asymmetric technologies, and achieve what you don’t have, what I have, what you have, what I have, and what you are better than, so as to form a “new trick” to defeat the enemy at critical moments.

  Use strategy as the key to cognitive offense and defense. Although the importance of technical factors in modern cognitive warfare is increasing, the status and role of strategy are still irreplaceable. Focus on the word “hidden”, strengthen the special function of “strategy” as a smart strategy to surprise, unaware, confuse and mislead the opponent, formulate and implement targeted strategies and tactics according to the opponent’s strategic traditions, thinking habits, cultural attributes and weaknesses, and lead them without shadow, lure them into the invisible, and guide them without a trace; focus on the word “link”, deepen the research on the methods and strategies of strategy application under modern scientific and technological conditions, and comprehensively use modern technologies such as network information and artificial intelligence to empower and increase the efficiency of strategy application, and add the wings of science and technology to cognitive strategy; focus on the word “integration” to achieve results, deepen the research on the characteristics and laws of the combination of cognitive warfare soft power and physical domain military operations hard power, and explore the path of integrated application of military forces in multiple fields such as cognitive domain and physical domain.

  Coordinate and promote the comprehensive and scientific development of cognitive warfare

  To fight a cognitive proactive battle, we must follow the internal mechanisms that run through it, grasp the practical requirements contained therein, follow the ever-changing military practice, strengthen scientific thinking, adhere to problem-orientation, develop a forward-looking perspective, and strive to grasp the three relationships.

  Grasp the relationship between strategy and technology. “Strategy + technology” constitutes the main content of cognitive warfare methods and means. As a highly intelligent combat form and method, cognitive warfare is born with the inherent content of strategy with the most intelligent background. The flexible and flexible strategy game is the historical heritage and wonderful chapter of our army’s cognitive warfare. The process of the development and evolution of cognitive warfare is, to a certain extent, the process of mutual growth and mutual construction of strategy and technology. In this process, strategy is more colorful due to the blessing of technology, and technology is more powerful due to the use of strategy. To grasp the initiative of thinking and cognition and fight the initiative of cognitive warfare, we must not only carry forward the advantages of our army in using strategy, but also strengthen the application of technical means. More importantly, we must organically combine strategy with technology, and enhance the comprehensive effectiveness of cognitive attack and defense through technical strategy and strategic use of technology.

  Grasp the relationship between soft and hard. Modern warfare usually divides the combat domain into physical domain, information domain, and cognitive domain according to the characteristics of material form. These three domains conduct each other and influence each other to form the field and soil of military confrontation. Among them, the cognitive domain and information domain show soft power, and the physical domain shows hard power. The two forces of soft and hard are unified in the vast space of the integration of the three domains of military game, and together constitute the basic power elements of cognitive offense and defense. Although cognitive warfare occurs in the cognitive field, its combat support is not only soft power. With the enhancement of the hard power of the physical domain, cognitive formation can often be accelerated, and cognitive realization can be better implemented. To grasp the initiative of thinking and cognition and fight the initiative of cognitive warfare, it is necessary not only to strengthen the construction of cognitive warfare ontology, improve the ability to directly use strategies and technical means to strengthen self-protection, intervene and influence the opponent’s thinking and cognition, but also to actively borrow power from the physical domain, and use the conduction effect of military operations in the physical domain to verify and strengthen thinking and cognition, and at the same time promote the materialization of cognitive results through verification and strengthening actions.

  Grasp the relationship between attack and defense. Cognition, in terms of its object, includes two sides of the same coin: “know yourself and shape your opponent”, which can also be succinctly summarized as “save yourself and destroy the enemy”. Among them, knowing and sticking to yourself, preventing and avoiding being influenced and shaped by the enemy is “defense”; weakening and depriving the enemy’s cognitive ability, knowing and shaping the opponent is “attack”. Cognitive warfare is an opposing unity of the two forces of offense and defense, which grows and declines and transforms into each other. The core of mastering the initiative of thinking and cognition and fighting the initiative of cognitive operations is to improve the ability of defense and counterattack, recognize the strengths and weaknesses, strengths and weaknesses, advantages and disadvantages of the enemy and ourselves, stick to ourselves and attack the enemy’s weaknesses, and use our clarity to trap the enemy in confusion; the key is to accurately grasp the transition node between offense and defense, seize the enemy’s cognitive loopholes, concentrate forces to pursue and attack, paralyze its defense line, and seize its key points; the purpose is to master cognitive initiative. Whether it is attack or defense, they all end up occupying a favorable position in the cognitive game and winning. When to attack and when to defend, they must obey and unify this goal.
















把握好謀與技的關係。 「謀略+技術」構成認知戰方法手段的主體內容。認知戰作為高度智慧化的作戰形態和方式,最具智慧底色的謀略運用是其與生俱來的固有內容,機動靈活的謀略博弈更是我軍認知作戰歷史傳承和精彩篇章。認知戰發展演變的過程,某種程度就是謀略與科技相長互構的過程。在這過程中,謀略因科技的祝福而更加多彩,科技因謀略的運用而更加強大。掌握思維認知主動權、打好認知作戰主動仗,不僅要發揚我軍善用謀略的優長,還須強化技術手段的應用,更重要的是將施謀與用技有機結合起來,透過技術性施謀、謀略性用技強化認知攻防的綜合效能。




Chinese Military Insight into the Evolution of Cognitive Warfare



Cognition is the process by which people acquire, process and apply information and knowledge. At present, the cognitive domain has gradually become a new battlefield for competition, and cognitive warfare has gradually received attention from all countries. With the development of the scientific and technological revolution and the expansion of war practice, cognitive warfare is showing an accelerating evolution trend.

Cognitive technology is becoming the basic driving force of the evolution of war. Technology changes the form of war and also changes the way of cognitive warfare. If the large-scale popularization of information networks has promoted the information domain to become a combat domain, and the exponential growth of data and network scale is a sign of the maturity of the information domain, then the large-scale application of cognitive technology and the continuous iterative development of cognitive technology will become a sign of the maturity of cognitive warfare. In the future, technologies in cognitive environment, cognitive perception, cognitive control, artificial intelligence, etc. will reflect the transformative impact that cognitive technology may have on social cognitive confrontation and military cognitive confrontation. Human beings are entering the era of universal communication. The global cyberspace is being highly linked. The network has become a combat space for comprehensive game between state actors and non-state actors. The contention and war of communication have become part of the high-intensity military action level. At present, major countries in the world have laid out the frontier of cognitive technology and carried out cognitive technology competitions. Through modeling and analysis, they seek to penetrate and control the human brain network, information network and social network; through deep calculation, actuarial calculation, and clever calculation, they aim to maximize the control of people’s cognitive world and cognitive domain.

The cognitive domain is becoming an important battlefield in hybrid warfare. In the intelligent era, the way humans communicate is undergoing complex and profound changes. Offline communication is giving way to online communication. Various new media platforms have become the main channels for the public to understand the battlefield, and large social platforms have become the main battlefield for cognitive game struggles. Therefore, the combat domain of future wars will continue to expand. The space domain will expand from land, sea, air, and space networks to deep space, deep sea, and deep earth, while the logic domain will expand from the physical domain to the information domain and cognitive domain. War is no longer limited to the physical threats of traditional wars, but is turning to the social consciousness threats brought about by mass media and technological progress. Blockade and anti-blockade, dominance and anti-domination around communication platforms will become the focus of cognitive warfare, and the struggle for international discourse control using information as ammunition has become the main way of cognitive confrontation today. From the perspective of hybrid warfare, ideological propaganda and indoctrination, the penetration of values ​​and culture, traditional public opinion psychology and legal offense and defense, and information network warfare have all become important aspects of cognitive warfare. Hybrid warfare can achieve the goal of small-scale war or even victory without fighting through comprehensive game means such as cognitive warfare. The offense and defense in the cognitive field will be an uninterrupted and normalized struggle, and combat effectiveness will continue to accumulate and be gradually released.

Cognitive advantage is becoming a winning advantage in high-end warfare. Freedom of action in war is the lifeblood of the military. From the cognitive dimension, the deeper the understanding of the battlefield environment and combat opponents, the freer the action and the greater the relative advantage. However, with the exponential growth of combat data in war, commanders are beginning to face the cognitive dilemma of data swamp, data fog, and data overload. Having information advantage does not mean having cognitive advantage. An important military application direction of artificial intelligence technology is to process massive data in real time, help commanders get rid of cognitive overload, and quickly form cognitive advantages. In intelligent warfare, cognitive advantage will dominate decision-making advantage, and decision-making advantage will dominate action advantage. Cognitive advantage has four key indicators: stronger information acquisition ability, faster artificial intelligence machine learning speed, more effective emergency handling ability, and higher ability to develop and apply new technologies and new knowledge. For example, public opinion warfare with data-driven intelligent communication as its new feature has been highly coordinated and integrated with traditional military operations. This virtual-real integrated combat style has stronger combat effectiveness than simple military operations, which has fundamentally changed the traditional combat methods. The linkage and superposition of cognitive advantages will accelerate the transformation of combat effectiveness and become a fundamental advantage for winning wars.

Cognitive theory is becoming the forefront of the game of winning wars. Cognitive warfare is a combination of soft power and hard power, and is an important factor affecting national security in today’s era. At present, the competition for penetration and counter-penetration, attack and counter-attack, control and counter-control in cognitive space is fierce. Cognitive science theory is entering the military field. Concepts such as cognitive load, cognitive enhancement, cognitive immunity, and cognitive subversion have appeared frequently in the field of foreign cognitive warfare research. Foreign militaries believe that the cognitive domain is the “sixth combat domain” of human warfare, the core of the “intertwined conflict domain” in the era of great power competition, and an important direction for future military theory innovation. Obviously, cognitive warfare has become the strategic commanding heights for winning future wars, cognitive theory has become the frontier of theoretical innovation, and cognitive technology will accelerate the advancement of cognitive warfare to become an important “trigger point” for the intelligent military revolution. Since new technologies, new theories, and new styles of cognitive warfare are in the process of accelerated incubation, perhaps future wars will present a surprising new situation.








Continuous Military Innovation: Preparing for Cognitive Confrontation in Future Wars

Chinese Military Responsibility : Analysis of Cognitive Confrontation in the Era of All-Media

持續軍事創新:為未來戰爭中的認知對抗做好準備 –


In the era of all-media, cognitive confrontation around military hot spots has a deeper impact on the course of war, and has put forward new and higher requirements for the technical application, organizational form, and talent team of military communication. To adapt to this feature, it is necessary to continuously innovate in thinking concepts, platform construction, knowledge and capabilities, and prepare for cognitive confrontation in future wars.

Keywords: omnimedia era; cognitive confrontation; military communication; responsibility analysis

The report of the 20th CPC National Congress clearly proposed to “strengthen military training and preparation in an all-round way, and improve the people’s army’s ability to win”, “study and master the characteristics and laws of information-based and intelligent warfare, innovate military strategic guidance, and develop strategies and tactics of people’s war”. In the era of all-media, people’s cognitive patterns have undergone profound changes. The impact of cognitive confrontation around military hotspots on the course of war has deepened, and new and higher requirements have been put forward for the technical application, organizational form, and talent team of military communication. To adapt to this feature, it is necessary to continuously innovate in thinking concepts, platform construction, knowledge and capabilities, and prepare for cognitive confrontation in future wars.

1. Grasp the laws and nature of cognitive confrontation and occupy the main position of military communication

The cognitive confrontation in future wars, in the final analysis, is a judgment of the right and wrong of the war, a struggle for the support of the people, and a contest of communication power.

1. Grasping the cognitive characteristics of the omnimedia era

The relationship between cognition and military affairs has always been close. In ancient China, there was the military thought of “the best strategy is to attack the enemy’s strategy”, and there were also battle examples of “Xian Gao used cattle and food to repel the enemy, and Mo Di used the rope to lead the whole city”. Our party has always attached great importance to the issue of cognition. Comrade Mao Zedong wrote a special article “Where do people’s correct thoughts come from?”, answering the source and process of cognition with dialectical materialism epistemology, and revealing the fundamental law of cognition.

The advent of the omnimedia era has not changed this fundamental law of cognition, but the way of cognition has become more complex. The powerful network capabilities have made reach-influence-change a reality. As the breadth and depth of hot discussions increase, more and more people are “involved” and “participate” by posting comments, liking and posting. Individual cognition is driven, influenced and changed by the group, forming a directional and powerful public opinion “current”. Unrest and regime change in many regions of the world are all caused by cognitive factors, which must be taken seriously.

War and armed conflict are natural news hotspots, deeply intertwined with public cognition, and greatly affect the course and outcome of war. In future wars, military communication must use correct cognition to guide the masses, convey judgment of justice, support for the army, and confidence in victory, so as to unite the masses and win the war.

2. Stand Firmly on the People’s Side

In the same war, the attributes of the two opposing sides are essentially different. There are oppositions such as justice and injustice, hegemony and anti-hegemony, progress and reaction, interference and anti-interference, aggression and resistance to aggression. Comrade Mao Zedong pointed out that there are “reactionary public opinion and people’s public opinion”. To do a good job in military communication, it is necessary to politically distinguish between these two different types of public opinion.

Through the observation of several international communication events, it can be seen that some forces, with the help of platform advantages and technological advantages, coupled with the usual means of spreading rumors and deception, will prevail in the scale and breadth of communication. However, doing too much evil will eventually lead to self-destruction. This approach can only gain temporary advantages and ultimately cannot change the fate of failure. Military communication must obey and serve the requirements of victory, not copy others and mistakenly believe that we can use deception methods just as others can. On the contrary, determined by our party spirit and people-oriented nature, our military communication must adhere to the principle of authenticity and resolutely oppose the spread of all fake news and transplants; we must persist in spreading the glory of revolutionary heroism and news that we can win battles, especially we must not harbor illusions and play the tragic card; we must inspire confidence that justice and the people will win, and expose the enemy’s essential cowardice covered by cruelty; and so on.

In future wars, cognitive confrontation will be unprecedentedly fierce. Regarding people’s hearts and minds, if the enemy deceives, we must counter-deception; if the enemy blocks, we must counter-block; if the enemy covers up the truth, we must report the facts; if the enemy smears, we must publicize victory. Maintaining a close relationship with the people and standing firm on the people’s side is a necessary part of winning the people’s war and the fundamental prerequisite for winning cognitive confrontation in future wars.

3. Consciously obey and serve the requirements of victory

Military communication is integrated in peacetime and wartime. Effective communication in wartime cannot be separated from exploration and accumulation in peacetime. The more urgent the wartime situation is, the higher the communication capability required, and the more accurate the grasp of the communication tone must be. Slight deviations can be magnified through communication and the effect may go in the opposite direction. We must have a full understanding of the double-edged sword effect of communication in the omnimedia era, and practice the ability to do military communication online through communication one by one in peacetime.

To achieve close coordination between the political and military battlefields, it is necessary to achieve an organic connection between military communication and combat command. From the perspective of cognitive confrontation of international events, there must be a sufficient number of news products. At the same time, the release must be accurate. Especially in wartime, or “quasi-wartime” when public opinion forms the focus, the caliber of a news product and whether the timing of its release is appropriate may produce a “butterfly effect” in the overall situation. In the normalized and diversified use of military forces, it is necessary to attach importance to the connection between professional communication forces and combat command, prevent the lack of cognitive confrontation due to the absence of communication, and prevent “information flow bullets” from causing passive public opinion.

In the long-term practice of revolutionary wars, the war correspondents of our party and army have explored many valuable experiences, and some principles are still applicable in the era of all-media. We must focus on research and inheritance to prevent subjective mistakes, reduce blindness, take fewer detours, enhance confidence and confidence, and better serve the requirements of victory.

2. Deeply study the mechanism and impact of cognitive confrontation and seize the initiative in military communication

Modern media has become a key factor influencing the outcomes of all competitive behaviors. Only by deeply studying the mechanisms and impacts of cognitive confrontation can we seize the initiative in military communication.

1. Do a good job in war mobilization and form correct “cognition”

Since ancient times, wars must solve the problem of “cognition”, emphasize the justification of the war, and attach importance to the unity of the upper and lower levels. For example, in the overseas war to resist the US and aid Korea, we attached great importance to “cognition” and made every soldier clear about the significance of “resisting the US and aiding Korea to defend the country”, thus completing in-depth ideological and political mobilization. War correspondent Huashan recorded in “Diary of the Korean Battlefield”: Enemy planes broadcast over the battlefield, and soldiers cursed at the enemy planes: “Besides eating and drinking, what other words do you have? American politics is just this?” Huashan recorded such feelings: “Education must be raised to the height of patriotism and internationalism to adapt to the level of consciousness of today’s soldiers. It is no longer enough to talk about dividing two acres of land.”

Such cognition is the result of struggle. At that time, there was a “pro-American” ideology – some people believed that “personally they really couldn’t hate the American empire”; there was a “fear of the United States” ideology – they believed that if the United States dropped the atomic bomb, China would be destroyed. The Party Central Committee proposed that the focus of propaganda at that time was to “resolutely eliminate the reactionary pro-American ideology and the wrong fear of the United States, and generally cultivate an attitude of hatred, contempt, and disdain for American imperialism.” It was this powerful political mobilization that laid a strong ideological foundation for defeating the interference of American imperialism.

In this war, we invested unprecedented power in cognition. The Xinhua News Agency Chinese People’s Volunteer Army General Branch was established on the Korean front. The People’s Daily and radio stations and film studios in Beijing, Tianjin, Shenyang and other places sent reporters and staff to North Korea, leaving a large number of vivid records of that war and setting up a monument in the history of military reporting in the people’s journalism. Today, communication technology and means have undergone tremendous changes. We must carry forward the good tradition of military communication and make due contributions to in-depth ideological mobilization.

2. Fight against false information and clear up the cognitive fog

People generally believe that false information is rare and individual. However, in some major struggles, people have a certain understanding of deception. It is normal for newspapers, radio, television, the Internet, news agencies, etc. abroad, which are deeply controlled, to spread false information. Cognitive confrontation also requires anticipating the enemy and being lenient.

American data scientists studied fake news in the 2016 US election and found that if you occasionally like a piece of fake news online, you will be targeted by scripts from data mining companies such as Cambridge Analytica, which can frequently push tailored political propaganda information and reconstruct the perception of the real world. The conclusion is: “The best way to describe it is that this is an ecosystem: an ecosystem that surrounds mainstream news and ultimately kills it.”

In future wars, cognitive confrontation will not be sporadic, but rather massive, overwhelming, and unscrupulous false information that is far beyond people’s imagination. The enemy will use high-tech means such as artificial intelligence to falsify public opinion, cover up the truth, stir up public opinion, and divide the people. The unprecedented breadth, intensity, and depth of confrontation have become a huge challenge that military communication needs to fully respond to. In the face of this challenge, on the one hand, we must adhere to our political advantages to offset the enemy’s technological advantages; on the other hand, we must also catch up in terms of technological strength to avoid allowing the enemy to form a situation where one tael is worth a pound in cognitive confrontation. We must also have a deep insight into the driving force behind news hotspots and make solid preparations for cognitive confrontation in future wars.

3. Integrate into the war process and form a joint force for victory

Wherever the battle is fought, propaganda and agitation for military morale must be carried out, and the dissemination of public knowledge must follow. We must avoid separating combat from dissemination, and ensure that military dissemination and military operations are in step with each other, so as to work together to achieve victory.

Judging from the practice of our party in leading the military struggle, we have always fought well in the political battle while fighting well in the military battle, and have never relaxed political propaganda due to the intensity of fighting. Military communication has focused on the victory news from the front line, the spirit of revolutionary heroism, and the wise and creative deeds of officers and soldiers to defeat the enemy. It has spread a large number of vivid facts that have inspired military morale and made the people happy.

Military journalists are the backbone of military communication. To cultivate a large number of experts, they must be integrated into exercises and drills on a regular basis, discover good works from actual combat training, and hone strong military communication skills.

3. Focusing on the scale and magnitude of cognitive confrontation, building a main force of military communication

The report of the 20th CPC National Congress clearly proposed to consolidate and expand the mainstream ideology and public opinion in the new era. The report also clearly proposed to strengthen the construction of the all-media communication system and shape a new pattern of mainstream public opinion. Military communication should pay attention to the upgrading of thinking concepts, communication platforms, and knowledge and capabilities, and provide strong public opinion support for accelerating the construction of the People’s Army into a world-class army.

1. Innovative thinking concepts

Cognition is the premise of consensus. Only correct cognition can gather strength and unify actions. Judging from the COVID-19 pandemic over the past three years, the “cognitive epidemic” has always been with it. In local conflicts, cognitive confrontation accompanies every battlefield hotspot. In traditional and new security fields such as trade, biology, finance, and the Internet, there are signs that Western hostile forces are wantonly hyping and fully infiltrating. Although these do not occur entirely in the military field, they are all previews of cognitive confrontation in future wars.

In the era of all-media, the characteristics of increasing intensity of cognitive confrontation and increasing volume of communication should be given high attention. Military communication itself is an extremely important part of mainstream ideology and public opinion. It has important responsibilities and missions in implementing the Party’s leadership over ideological work and implementing the responsibility system for ideological work. In future wars, cognitive confrontation will begin before military struggle and run through the entire process. Thinking and research on cognitive confrontation must focus on the characteristics of modern communication in order to maintain its focus and not deviate from its direction.

Military journalists must change their mindsets and keep up with the pace of development. On the basis of writing every report well and making every product well, they must also delve into modern communication practices and study the laws of modern communication. They must attach importance to user stickiness, pay attention to follow-up effects, base themselves on the requirements of victory, and highlight the “war” content of the reports. In normal times, they must enhance their awareness of cognitive confrontation and consciously and bravely enter into the practice of cognitive confrontation.

2. Build a communication platform

Our Party attaches great importance to the construction of military communication power. Newspapers, periodicals, radio stations, movies, and books have all played an important role in different historical periods. In the new era, in order to shape a new pattern of mainstream public opinion and form an international voice that matches our country’s comprehensive national strength and international status, we need to conduct in-depth research and demonstration on the construction of military news media after the reform, and strive to build a modern military communication system that suits the national conditions and military situation and meets the requirements of the development of the times.

There is no communication without social networking, no news without video, no comment without interaction… These views reflect that the habits, preferences and choices of the audience have undergone fundamental changes. In the long run, a communication platform that integrates communication, social networking, reading and interaction and has authority and credibility is an important support for coping with cognitive confrontation.

The war of communication is a war of content and a war of platforms. We must be highly sensitive to new communication technologies and always maintain our enthusiasm for embracing new technologies. We must strengthen preparations for wartime, open up reliable communication channels, and ensure that our voices can be delivered. Whether in peacetime or wartime, we must stand firmly among the people and do a good job in military communication. This is also the fundamental requirement for adhering to the unity of party spirit and people’s nature in propaganda work.

3. Improving communication capabilities

The report of the 20th CPC National Congress clearly proposed to strengthen the study and education of military history, flourish and develop the culture of strengthening the military, and strengthen the cultivation of fighting spirit. Military communication not only accompanies and guarantees the victory of military operations, but also plays a direct role in the fundamental issue of cognition, and is a direct political operation.

Military communication in the Internet environment is a new thing, which requires communication, summary and improvement in peacetime. Military content is naturally a hot news topic, which requires high speed and intensity of communication, and requires strong ability to make decisions on the spot and respond quickly. Strengthening the normalization and diversification of military forces, firmly and flexibly carrying out military struggle, shaping the security situation, containing crises and conflicts, and winning local wars requires military communication to play an active and important role. We should focus on wartime applications, do a good job in communication training, let military communication focus on training and preparation, take active actions in equipment and reporter delivery, and the production of important military news and cultural products, and continuously improve military communication capabilities.

Cognitive confrontation is characterized by the integration of peacetime and wartime, long-lasting confrontation, and constant companionship. In the face of new situations and new problems, we cannot underestimate the status, role, and responsibility of military news dissemination. We must have a sense of responsibility that time is of the essence and cultivate strong dissemination skills that can both carry out strong ideological and political work and serve the needs of victory.

(Author’s unit: Air Force Political Work Department Propaganda and Culture Center Newspaper)


摘 要:全媒體時代,圍繞軍事熱點的認知對抗對戰爭進程的影響加深,對軍事傳播的技術應用、組織形態、人才隊伍提出了新的更高要求。適應這項特點,需要在思維理念、平台建立、知識能力等方面不斷創新,為未來戰爭中的認知對抗做好準備。






認知與軍事的關係歷來密切,在中國古代,就有「上兵伐謀」的軍事思想,也有「弦高以牛餼退敵,墨翟以螢帶全城」的戰例。我黨歷來重視認知問題,毛澤東同志特別寫了《人的正確思想是從哪裡來的? 》一文,用辯證唯物論認識論回答了認識的來源、過程,揭示了認識的根本規律。














自古以來,戰爭必須解決「認知」問題,講求師出有名,重視上下同欲。例如,在抗美援朝出國作戰中,我們高度重視“認知”,讓每一名戰士明確“抗美援朝保家衛國”的意義,從而完成了深入的思想動員和政治動員。戰地記者華山在《朝鮮戰場日記》中這樣記載:敵機在陣地上空廣播,戰士對著敵機罵 :「除了吃呀、喝呀,你還有什麼詞兒?美國的政治就是這點子呀? 」華山記下這樣的感受:「教育必須提到愛國主義和國際主義高度,才能適應今天戰士的覺悟水平,老講分兩畝地不行了。



























Chinese Military Considers Metaverse the New Frontier for Future Cognitive Warfare



●The essence of the metaverse is a highly developed virtual world that exists in parallel with the real world but also reacts to the real world.

●Parallel with the real world, reaction to the real world, and integration of multiple high technologies are the three major characteristics of the future metaverse.

●The metaverse provides a new way of thinking to understand and discover the operating behaviors, states and laws of complex real systems, as well as a new means to explore objective laws and transform nature and society.

● Strengthening the follow-up research on the role of the metaverse in cognitive warfare and highlighting the exploration of the mechanism of the role of the metaverse in cognitive warfare will help enrich and promote the construction of cognitive warfare theory.

The essence of the metaverse is a highly developed virtual world that exists in parallel with the real world but reacts to the real world. When virtual technologies such as digital, Internet, augmented reality and modern communications, blockchain, artificial intelligence and other technologies develop to a certain stage, the metaverse will emerge. Being parallel to the real world, reacting to the real world, and integrating multiple high technologies are the three major characteristics of the future metaverse. The operation of the metaverse conforms to the natural law of human understanding and transformation of the world. It directly acts on human thinking and cognition but is not bound by the essential attributes of thinking and cognition, which determines that it carries the operating laws of the real world, provides a new way of thinking to understand and discover the operating behavior, state and laws of complex systems in reality, and a new means to explore objective laws and transform nature and society. At the same time, it is itself a complex cognitive body, so it has immeasurable cognitive warfare application value.

The basic mechanism of cognitive warfare in the metaverse

The difference between the metaverse and other technologies is that it builds a complete digital world. Its operation is not supported by a single or a few technologies, but by a complex high-tech complex. This complex is built by humans, is a product of cognition, and continues to develop and evolve with the development of human cognitive practice. Its cognitive application has a unique regular mechanism.

System enhancement mechanism. The digital world constructed by the metaverse is itself a highly developed cognitive world. In this special cognitive world, technology not only exists as an additional role such as support and guarantee, but also directly participates in the shaping of cognition itself as a basic element of cognition. In other words, the technology that constitutes the metaverse itself has a distinct cognitive background, which not only supports the operation of cognition but also realizes the self-construction, revolution and transcendence of cognition; it not only provides a series of necessary technical services, but also creates a holographic technical soil for human cognition to operate independently and fight independently. The effect of the metaverse on cognition is not one-dimensional, but full-dimensional; not single-line, but full-system; not independent, but immersive; not fragmentary, but continuous; not cyclical, but full-life process. How far the thinking cognition develops, how far the metaverse develops, and thus it can shape people’s thinking cognition more comprehensively, deeply and lastingly. Therefore, humans have used high technology to create “Avatar”, a complex system combining man and machine, and have also created a life form on “Pandora” that can think independently, recognize itself, and think and act on its own. This life form, which was created by humans and is independent of humans, has achieved self-improvement and development in the new universe.

The mechanism of mutual construction of technology and knowledge. Unlike the one-way effect of individual technologies such as artificial intelligence and information networks on thinking and cognition, the metaverse provides a space for mutual construction of technology and cognition, and influence and counter-influence. In this space, we can simulate, demonstrate, simulate, and verify the process and results of this two-way mutual construction and promotion, so as to understand cognition more accurately and efficiently, improve cognitive warfare methods, and directly engage in real cognitive confrontation. The metaverse provides a parallel cognitive space that digitally twins real combat scenes, where cognitive warfare can be promoted efficiently, enhanced at a fast pace, and presented in a panoramic manner. It is reported that the US military uses virtual technology to verify the performance of new weapons and equipment, test the effectiveness of the use of new tactics, and conduct combat simulation training, relying on the deployment of forces, combat terrain, human characteristics, and other scenes similar to actual combat constructed in virtual spaces such as the metaverse. At the same time, more and more countries and armies are conducting direct cognitive attacks and defenses with their opponents through virtual spaces, confusing their minds, misleading their directions, and eroding their will.

Active reflection mechanism. As a virtual existence parallel to the real world, the metaverse is not a simple digital copy of the three-dimensional space, but has its own operating rules and can actively act on the real world. This active action is the focus of the cognitive application of the metaverse. The metaverse space game reflects the characteristics of cognitive warfare. The war results deduced in the metaverse through virtual simulation may directly affect the real world, extending to the conscious cognitive competition game through sensory touch, thereby winning the dominant position in cognitive warfare. In the cognitive perspective, the metaverse is both a new cognitive space and the main battlefield of cognition, as well as an extended domain of cognition and a new cognitive component. At present, the military of many countries uses sandbox operations, war games and even computer simulations to formulate and test strategies and tactics, revise the application of tactics, improve training methods, and improve weapons and equipment. This is a typical example of the virtual world reacting to reality. With the continuous development and integration of the metaverse technology group, cognitive confrontation will inevitably shift more and faster from the real world to a hybrid world combining virtuality and reality.

The basic characteristics of cognitive warfare in the metaverse

Existence determines consciousness, and technology drives creation. The metaverse has many characteristics, such as parallelism with the real world, initiative in the real world, and comprehensiveness that integrates multiple technologies. These prominent characteristics determine the different characteristics and laws of its effects on thinking and cognition.

Cross-domain construction. The formation, development and evolution of cognition are rarely determined by a single factor, but are often the result of the combined effect of multiple factors. The metaverse originates from the real world and is presented in the virtual space. It has the characteristics of multi-domain interconnection that runs through the real and virtual worlds. As the saying goes, “a lot of gossip can melt gold, and accumulated criticism can destroy bones.” This cross-domain characteristic that spans different fields and opens up related spaces can best influence and shape people’s thinking and cognition from different angles. The most typical case is that game developers are increasingly focusing on using virtual stories based on historical facts and real feelings to attract and infect people. The United States has used this cross-domain shaped surreal “real” experience to spread values. At present, the most representative “metaverse” themed science fiction work is “Ready Player One” directed by Spielberg. The play focuses on depicting the era background of the birth of the “metaverse” and the huge contrast between the real status and virtual status of the protagonist. Through the plot and special effects shots, it delicately portrays the real sense of human participation, thereby spreading the American ideology, especially the values ​​of gaining wealth, status, love and friendship through “bloodless” struggle in the virtual world.

Integrated influence. The important fulcrums of cognitive warfare are strategy and technology. With the development of science and technology and the progress of society, the proportion of technology in cognitive warfare is increasing and its role is becoming more and more prominent. It can be said that cognitive warfare without scientific and technological support is cognitive warfare without power, and cognitive warfare with advanced technology is more likely to win. As a complex system integrating multiple cutting-edge technologies, the metaverse has a natural advantage in the use of cognitive warfare. Many people, including adults, are deeply trapped in the virtual world and indulge in online games. It is very important that the virtual space gives game operators a super-time and space experience and a sense of achievement. If martial arts novels are fairy tales for adults, then the metaverse, which can “do whatever you want”, creates a super fairy tale world, which has an immeasurable impact on people’s thinking, cognition, value pursuit, moral concepts, emotional will, and behavior patterns.

Compromising influence. A big difference between the metaverse and other technical means is that it constructs a virtual world that originates from the real world but reacts to the real world. In this complex domain space, people’s thinking and cognition go back and forth between the real world and the virtual space, verify each other, repeatedly confirm, and constantly correct, thereby generating new thinking and cognition, and exerting a dynamic influence on both worlds. This two-way interactive compromising influence, on the one hand, is conducive to the formation and development of correct thinking and cognition, making the cognition of the real world more imaginative with the wings of the virtual world’s thoughts, and at the same time, it also makes the cognition of the virtual space find the material support of the real world and become more scientific. On the other hand, if it is not operated properly, it is likely to cause great safety hazards and ethical problems. In recent years, the U.S. military has relied on artificial intelligence and virtual technology to remotely control drones to attack opponents, which is a typical example of the virtual world reacting to the real world. This attack is far away from the tragic scene of face-to-face fighting, which greatly dilutes the drone operator’s awe of life and lowers the threshold for remotely controlling the opponent. At the same time, due to the imperfect reconnaissance and identification technology, incidents of accidental shooting, injury, and killing of civilians, friendly forces, and even their own troops often occur.

The basic style of cognitive warfare in the metaverse

Metaverse cognitive warfare is based on reality and leads future development. It involves both the virtual and real worlds, penetrates multiple fields, covers multiple technologies, and has a variety of combat styles. There is great uncertainty, but it is not without rules. Comprehensive analysis shows that there are three basic styles.

Platform confrontation. In terms of its relationship with human thinking and cognition, the metaverse itself is a complex cognitive actor, a derivative of human thinking and cognition, and an important component and platform of cognitive warfare. When hostile countries and armies regard the metaverse as an important position for cognitive warfare, cognitive offensive and defensive operations between different camps within the metaverse exist in reality. On this platform, all technologies, resources and forces of the metaverse are integrated and operated with thinking and cognition as the center. Metaverse operations are prominently manifested as cognitive offensive and defensive operations aimed at disrupting, delaying, blocking, destroying and eliminating the existence and operation of the opponent’s metaverse. In this field, whoever has higher-end strategic planning, more flexible tactical application, more advanced technical force and more solid material support will be able to gain the initiative in metaverse cognitive warfare.

System attack. The metaverse is a cognitive system composed of a series of cutting-edge technologies, and systemicity is its inherent attribute and vitality guarantee. Advanced technologies such as digital foundation, efficient communication, blockchain identity authentication, holographic AR imaging, artificial intelligence, and high-performance Internet constitute a unified body with tight structure, functional coupling, and complete system. The components are indispensable for the formation and development of thinking cognition and offensive and defensive confrontation. It is difficult to imagine that the metaverse still has the possibility of existence without the support of advanced technology groups such as high-level digitization, high-quality communication, and high-speed computing. Using superior forces to force or use asymmetric tactics to attack and block the key nodes and technological operation chains of the opponent’s metaverse system, hinder its operation, suppress its functions, and destroy its existence is an important style and efficient path of metaverse cognitive warfare.

Divert the flow. An important value and significance of the existence and development of the metaverse lies in serving and supporting the related activities of the real world. Under normal circumstances, the metaverse can demonstrate, display, review and predict the related activities of the real world in a digital form. Once the communication between the virtual and real worlds is disturbed or the self-operation of the metaverse is disordered, it is easy to cause the situation reflected to be untrue, the information analyzed to be distorted, the conclusions derived to be invalid, and the suggestions provided to be wrong, causing the related activities of the real world to deviate. It is based on this that we can concentrate our efforts on inducing attacks on the internal operation of the opponent’s metaverse or the communication technology devices of the two worlds, and use extremely confusing and deceptive information and scenes to divert the flow, confuse their cognition, interfere with their judgment, and mislead their decision-making. Therefore, we should strengthen the tracking research on the cognitive warfare of the role of the metaverse, highlight the exploration of the cognitive warfare mechanism of the role of the metaverse, and strengthen and promote the construction of cognitive warfare theory.

(Author’s unit: Military Political Work Research Institute of the Academy of Military Sciences)
























Chinese Military Values Attack & Defense as the Important Focus of Combat in Cognitive Domain Operations



Value attack and defense is an important way to conduct cognitive domain operations from a strategic level. Usually, value attack and defense is achieved by intervening in people’s thinking, beliefs, values, etc., in order to achieve the purpose of disintegrating the enemy’s consensus, destroying the enemy’s will, and then gaining comprehensive control over the battlefield. Accurately grasping the characteristics, mechanisms, and means of value attack and defense is crucial to gaining future cognitive domain combat advantages.

Characteristics of the cognitive domain of value attack and defense

Value attack and defense refers to the intervention and influence on relatively stable cognitive results by inducing deep logical thinking and value judgment changes of individuals or groups, in order to reconstruct people’s cognitive abilities such as will, thinking, psychology, and emotions. Value attack and defense mainly has the following characteristics:

Soft confrontation. Traditional warfare mainly relies on violent means to weaken and disintegrate the enemy’s military capabilities, and usually has a high intensity of war. Cognitive domain warfare will no longer be limited to hard confrontations such as siege and conquest, but will focus more on infiltration and counter-infiltration, attack and counter-attack, control and counter-control around value positions. By competing for the dominance of cognitive domain confrontation, the combat effectiveness of the physical domain and information domain will be further stimulated, thereby seizing the initiative on the battlefield and even achieving the effect of defeating the enemy without fighting. In practice, value offense and defense often focus on the cultural traditions, values ​​and social psychology of a country or nation, and ultimately achieve the purpose of destroying the enemy’s will, cognitive manipulation, and mental control.

Full-dimensional release. Modern warfare is increasingly characterized by being holistic, multi-domain, and all-time. Cognitive domain warfare aims to influence battlefield effects by intervening in human consciousness, and the relative stability of consciousness determines that people’s worldviews, beliefs, and other values ​​are generally relatively stable. Therefore, value offense and defense need to be carried out in a long-term, uninterrupted, holographic, and full-dimensional manner. From a temporal perspective, value offense and defense blurs the boundaries between peace and war, and is always at war, constantly accumulating and gradually releasing combat effectiveness; from a spatial perspective, value offense and defense blurs the boundaries between the front and rear of combat, and is carried out in all directions in tangible and intangible spaces; from a field perspective, value offense and defense blurs the boundaries between military and non-military, and occurs not only in the military field, but also in the political, economic, diplomatic, and cultural fields, showing the characteristics of full-domain coverage.

Empowered by science and technology. Cognitive domain warfare is a technology-intensive and complex system engineering. The full-process penetration of emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence, brain science, and quantum computing is triggering iterative upgrades and profound changes in cognitive domain warfare. Intelligent tools fundamentally enhance the ability of cognitive domain combatants to manipulate and interfere with the opponent’s thinking. Human-machine hybrid as a new means and new style of combat power will change the main body of future wars. Autonomous confrontation and cloud brain victory may become the mainstream attack and defense mode. In recent years, NATO has launched cognitive electronic warfare equipment aimed at changing the opponent’s value cognition and behavior through information attack and defense. Technological development has also triggered a cognitive revolution. The rapid spread of information has further accelerated the differences in public value cognition. Cognitive islands have exacerbated the value gap between different subjects. The social structure changes brought about by intelligence are profoundly changing the political and cultural pattern. From this point of view, in future cognitive domain warfare, it is crucial to grasp the “bull’s nose” of scientific and technological innovation and master key core technologies to seize the initiative on the battlefield.

The mechanism of cognitive domain of value attack and defense

Value attack and defense is a high-level confrontation in cognitive domain operations, and the target of action is people’s deep cognition. Consciousness is the reflection of social existence in the brain. The regulation of social existence, the guidance of public consciousness and the change of human brain function can strengthen or reverse human consciousness. If you want to win the opponent in the attack and defense confrontation, you must follow the laws of thinking and cognition and grasp the winning mechanism of value attack and defense.

Impacting the value “protection zone”. Occupying the commanding heights of values ​​is the logical starting point for conducting value offense and defense. Social consciousness is often composed of relatively stable core values ​​and peripheral auxiliary theories. Various theories such as economy, politics, religion, and culture can be constructed and adapted to protect core values ​​from external shocks, and therefore also bear the impact and challenge of other values. In the eyes of foreign militaries, value offense and defense is to continuously impact the “protection zone” of the opponent’s ideology through cultural infiltration, religious conflict, strategic communication and other means, in conjunction with actions in the physical and information domains. This often requires seizing the values, political attitudes, religious beliefs, etc. that affect the opponent’s cognition, disrupting their social group psychology, inducing value confusion, shaking their will to fight, destroying cultural identity, and even changing and disintegrating their original cognitive system, so as to instill or implant new values ​​that are beneficial to themselves in order to achieve combat objectives.

Ignite the “trigger point” of conflict. Cognitive domain warfare involves multiple categories such as history and culture, political system, national sentiment, and religious beliefs. The main body of the war has also expanded from simple military personnel to ordinary people. It will become an important means of cognitive domain warfare to stimulate cognitive conflicts among ordinary people by hyping up topic disputes and public events. In recent local conflicts, it is not uncommon for the warring parties to ignite national sentiments through purposeful narratives, trigger political crises and thus affect the war situation. In future wars, some countries will use hot and sensitive events to detonate public opinion, rely on network technology to gather, absorb, mobilize, accurately manipulate and induce ordinary people, thereby promoting general conflicts to rise to disputes of beliefs, disputes of systems, and disputes of values. It will become the norm.

Control the cognitive “fracture surface”. Cognitive space, as an existence at the conceptual level, is composed of the superposition of the subjective cognitive spaces of all combat individuals. It is a collection of differentiated, differentiated, and even conflicting values. However, ideology has a “suturing” function. Through cognitive shaping and discourse construction, it can effectively “suturing” the broken cognition, condense the scattered values, and form a relatively stable cognitive system. After World War II, France had carried out effective cognitive “suturing” on the trauma of defeat. It used a whole set of independent narrative logic to explain how the war provided France with “new opportunities”, which greatly condensed the political identity of the French people with the government. In the battle for value positions in cognitive domain operations, we should focus on the cognitive fracture surface within the enemy, find the cognitive connection points between the enemy and us, and “suturing” the cognition, so as to unite the forces of all parties to the greatest extent and isolate and disintegrate the enemy.

The main means of cognitive domain in value attack and defense

Value attack and defense expands cognitive confrontation from public opinion, psychology and other levels to thinking space, and from the military field to the overall domain, thus achieving a blow to the enemy’s deep political identity. At present, the world’s military powers are strengthening strategic pre-positioning, aiming at the profound changes in target subjects and tactics, changing combat thinking, and actively controlling the initiative of cognitive domain operations.

Aiming at deep destruction. Cognitive domain warfare directly affects people’s brain cognition, and is easier to achieve deep strategic intentions than physical domain warfare. In particular, once the “high-level cognition” of people’s language level, thinking level, and cultural level is broken through, it will help to strategically reverse the battlefield situation and achieve the political purpose of the war. Based on this, cognitive domain warfare often begins before the war, by intervening in the opponent’s internal and foreign affairs, shaking its ideological and value foundations, etc.; during war, it focuses on influencing the enemy’s war decision-making, campaign command, and combat implementation. The value judgment, attack or weaken the decision-making ability and resistance will of combatants, etc. All hostile parties try to “maintain their own world while increasing the destructive pressure of the opponent” in order to achieve decision-making advantages by competing for cognitive advantages, and then achieve the goal of action advantages.

Centered on ordinary individuals. In the future, the subjects of cognitive domain operations will no longer be limited to military personnel. Broadly speaking, individuals who can communicate and disseminate information may become participating forces. Compared with elites in the social field, ordinary people are more likely to accept and disseminate diverse values, and their cognitive space is more likely to be manipulated. At present, online media is becoming the main channel for information exchange and dissemination in the social field, and the purpose of cognitive shaping can be achieved through targeted information guidance and information delivery. Foreign military practices have proved that with the help of cognitive shaping of ordinary individuals, progressive infiltration and cognitive interference can be caused from bottom to top, causing a deviation in the consciousness and ideas between ordinary people and social decision-makers, and failing to reach an effective consensus in key actions.

In the form of protracted warfare. Unlike the direct attack and destruction of “hard” targets in the physical domain military struggle, the potential target of cognitive domain warfare is human cognition. The value attack and defense is aimed at changing the concepts, beliefs, will, emotions, etc. of the combat targets, which often requires subtle influence and step-by-step operations. Effective cognitive offense is generally launched in the combat preparation stage and runs through the entire war. By collecting the opponent’s cognitive situation, decision-making habits, thinking patterns, etc., targeted actions such as creating a situation and changing the atmosphere are carried out. Therefore, cognitive domain warfare needs to strengthen the overall design, especially focusing on coordinating multiple forces, and strengthening pre-positioned preparations in multiple positions such as public opinion field creation and diplomacy, so as to form an overall combat force.



















China’s “War of Annihilation” from the Perspective of Modern Warfare



“Based on the evolution of war, grasp the “cautious first battle””

  Written in front

  In the history of our army, fighting a war of annihilation is one of the most distinctive and important guiding ideas for operations. As early as the Agrarian Revolutionary War, based on the war purpose of “preserving ourselves and destroying the enemy”, our army clearly proposed that the basic policy in operations was to fight a war of annihilation. Since then, in different historical periods, according to different environments, situations and tasks, our army has maintained a high degree of flexibility and maneuverability in combat guidance, and has resolutely implemented the principle of fighting a war of annihilation, continuously enriched and developed combat theories, and wrote classic examples of the weak defeating the strong in the history of world wars.

  With the advent of the information age, the form of warfare, battlefield environment, military technology, and warfare mechanisms have undergone major changes. How the traditional theory of annihilation warfare can adapt to the changes of the times, give full play to our strengths, attack the enemy’s weaknesses, and innovate and develop is a question of the times that our generation of soldiers must answer well.

  Depriving the enemy of its combat power is the key to winning a war of annihilation

  In the long-term practice of revolutionary wars, our army is often at a disadvantage in terms of quantity, scale and equipment. In order to dampen the enemy’s spirit, seize the initiative and defeat the enemy, while emphasizing the cautiousness of the first battle, we pay great attention to planning and fighting a war of annihilation to quickly weaken the enemy’s strategic advantage. Therefore, “it is better to cut off one finger than to injure ten fingers”, completely depriving the enemy of its combat capability, avoiding a war of attrition or a war of defeat, has also become a key indicator for measuring the success or failure of a war of annihilation and the comprehensive effectiveness of combat. Combat under traditional conditions is often the physical superposition of troops and weapons in the same time and space, emphasizing hard killing as the main method, and the strength of combat effectiveness is mainly manifested through parameters such as mobility, firepower, and protection. Correspondingly, quickly and effectively eliminating the enemy’s living forces has become the most effective means of winning hearts and minds and disintegrating the enemy.

  Entering the information age, information power has driven the displacement of combat effectiveness measurement standards in an exponential manner. While becoming the dominant factor in the informationized battlefield, it has strongly promoted the organic integration of combat power with early warning detection, reconnaissance intelligence, command and control, and rear-end support. The warring parties are showing a trend of full-system and full-factor confrontation. The informationized battlefield no longer simply emphasizes the spatial and temporal concentration of troops and weapons to suppress and attack the enemy, but focuses on relying on the network information system to seize information space and compete for information advantages, so that the enemy “cannot see clearly, cannot connect, and cannot hit accurately”, thereby completely depriving the enemy of its combat effectiveness. In the Kosovo War, after suffering 78 days of continuous air strikes by NATO, although the Yugoslav army did not suffer major losses in its manpower, it was always in a passive position because the material basis of the war and the reconnaissance and early warning, command and control, air defense and anti-missile systems were destroyed and paralyzed by the enemy, and was forced to sign a humiliating treaty.

  In today’s era, destroying the enemy’s key war support elements, depriving it of the objective material basis for continuous combat, and undermining its will to wage war are not only important options for annihilation warfare to pursue deterrence effects and deprive the enemy of its combat effectiveness, but also a necessary way for annihilation warfare to achieve combat intentions and defeat the opponent.

  Attacking the key points and breaking the system is the key to winning a war of annihilation

  For a long time, pulling teeth out of a tiger’s mouth and striking the enemy’s vital points have been important indicators for testing the courage and command art of commanders and fighters, and are also effective means to defeat the enemy and achieve the goal of annihilation warfare. During the Hujia Wopeng Battle of the Liaoshen Campaign during the War of Liberation, the 3rd Column of the Northeast Field Army first destroyed the Liao Yaoxiang Corps Command through bold penetration, infiltration, and division, and quickly trapped the enemy in a state of collapse and defeat. But at the same time, we should also see that due to the constraints of military technology level and the effectiveness of weapons and equipment, in traditional operations, there are often many practical difficulties in accurately striking core targets such as enemy command organizations and key defense positions, and there is a lack of effective means to “go straight to Huanglong”. It can be said that traditional annihilation warfare is still more about annihilating the opponent’s living forces. This also makes it an important factor in designing the combat process and considering the success or failure of operations in traditional operations to measure and compare the number and scale of troops and weapons of both sides.

  In the information age, on the one hand, the environmental situation and war thinking have undergone profound changes. The necessity and possibility of expanding the size of the army in exchange for improved combat effectiveness and then winning the war by annihilating a large number of enemy heavy troops are becoming less and less; on the other hand, new weapons and equipment such as precision guidance and unmanned intelligence, with the support of powerful information networks and aerospace reconnaissance capabilities, can implement “decapitation operations” and “targeted elimination” more quickly and accurately, and quickly achieve the goal of annihilation warfare. The combat mode of seizing the key nodes and parts of the enemy’s combat system, carrying out precise strikes and structural destruction, paralyzing the enemy’s combat system while reducing collateral damage and achieving combat objectives is becoming more and more respected. As a result, command centers, communication hubs, radar positions, network nodes, etc. have become sensitive parts that the warring parties focus on protecting and the key points of attacking. In the Iraq War, the US military launched a comprehensive structural paralysis operation against the Iraqi army. By implementing “decapitation operations” against Iraqi military and political leaders and “targeted elimination” of the Iraqi army’s communication command and air defense systems, the Iraqi army was placed in a completely passive position throughout the process, and the war process was accelerated.

  In today’s era, with the rapid development of information technology and war practice, “system destruction” is becoming a keyword in modern combat theory, and is gradually promoting the overall transformation of combat modes. It has not only become a new way and means to win wars, but also an important way to win modern annihilation wars.

  Controlling operational control is the key to winning a war of annihilation

  In previous war practices, the combat environment faced by our army was relatively simple, and the battlefield was mainly carried out on land. Although our army is often at a disadvantage compared to the opponent’s weapons and equipment, it can often defeat the strong with the weak and defeat the enemy by exploring its own advantages, exploiting the enemy’s weaknesses, and actively looking for opportunities. In the second battle of the War to Resist U.S. Aggression and Aid Korea, the volunteer army adopted the combat strategy of internal operations, luring the enemy deep into the enemy, and defeating them one by one. They made full use of the darkness of night and terrain to secretly engage the enemy, dared to cut off the enemy’s retreat, interspersed attacks, and divided and surrounded the enemy, giving the enemy an annihilating blow, and finally won the battle and reversed the entire situation in one fell swoop. This shows that for a party that is temporarily unable to seize comprehensive control of the battlefield in combat, as long as it is good at exploiting the enemy’s weaknesses and cleverly reducing the enemy’s sharp attack momentum, it can still seek the initiative to win in difficult and difficult situations and achieve the goal of annihilation warfare.

  In the information age, wars are fought on vast battlefields, both visible and invisible. In addition to the traditional battlefields of land, sea and air, they are also further extended to deep sea, space, electromagnetic, network, intelligence, biology and other space fields, presenting a complex situation. The armies of the world’s powerful countries have taken the seizure of comprehensive control and the initiative in war as important indicators and necessary ways to build their army and defeat their opponents. Dimensionality reduction strikes have become a must-have in battlefield confrontations. In recent years, the US military’s foreign aggression has relied on the battlefield comprehensive control dominated by the advantages of air and space control and information control. However, we must also see that no matter how powerful the opponent is, there will be fatal weaknesses. Even if it is difficult for the party with relatively backward weapons and equipment to fully seize the battlefield comprehensive control, it can still “attack the incapable with the capable” in the local battlefield, seek local combat initiative, and thus win the local annihilation war, and use the local initiative to drive the overall initiative, and use asymmetric single control to help seize local comprehensive control and achieve final victory.

  In today’s era, we must accelerate the construction of all aspects of the military and step up the forging of capabilities and means to seize comprehensive control and take the initiative on the battlefield. We must also follow the winning mechanism of modern warfare, flexibly use “total war”, “cognitive war”, “cross-domain war”, “intelligent war” and other tactics, use dimensionality reduction strikes, asymmetric strikes and other tactics, turn disadvantages into advantages, turn passivity into initiative, control combat control by “attacking the incapable with the able”, and win the war of annihilation.

  Accurately releasing energy is the key to winning a war of annihilation

  Traditional warfare is restricted by factors such as command and communication, mobility, firepower speed, and weather conditions. The use of forces is often limited to a certain combat area. There is little change in combat command and troop actions, and offensive and defensive actions are relatively clear. In the past, annihilation warfare was more often achieved through echelon (group) deployment, continuous attack (resistance), layer-by-layer capture (defense), combined with interspersed detours, segmentation and encirclement, and cutting off the enemy’s flanks. For this reason, “concentrating superior forces and annihilating the enemy one by one” often becomes the fundamental principle and important way to plan annihilation warfare.

  In the information age, the combat force structure has undergone major changes. With the emergence of space combat, intelligent combat, stealth combat forces, as well as a large number of new weaponry and equipment such as hypersonic aircraft and kinetic weapons, the military’s information power, mobility, and strike power have unprecedentedly increased, and the effectiveness of unmanned intelligent combat has become increasingly prominent. Although quantity and scale are still important criteria for measuring the combat effectiveness of an army, “newer, faster, more accurate, and smarter” has begun to become an important indicator for measuring an army’s ability to adapt to modern warfare. Correspondingly, scientifically and rationally organizing combat forces and focusing on the best to release combat effectiveness have become important links in winning modern annihilation wars.

  Structural strength determines combat effectiveness, and advanced and applicable structural formation is an important prerequisite for multi-functional and powerful combat effectiveness. In the information age, only by jointly using new and old combat forces, realizing the organic integration of new quality capabilities and traditional capabilities, and then building a new force formation that integrates multiple capabilities, can we promote the overall optimization of the combat system and the aggregation of advantages, and accurately control the combat rhythm, combat time and space, combat operations and combat process. In the 2020 Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, Azerbaijan adopted a flexible formation mode for manned and unmanned combat forces, using low-cost An-2 drones to lure the Armenian air defense system to open fire, and followed up with Habib-2 anti-radar drones and TB-2 reconnaissance and strike drones to destroy more than a dozen air defense systems on the Armenian side in one fell swoop, and then calmly defeated the Armenian ground armored forces.

  In today’s era, as the status and role of combat operations such as network and electronic warfare, air and space attacks, and unmanned combat become more prominent, more attention should be paid to scientific design and rational organization of troops and weapons, so as to achieve the effect of clenching fingers into a fist through the accumulation of quality and integration of efficiency, and fight a war of annihilation that is quick to strike and quick to retreat, and wins with precision.

















當今時代,固然要加快軍隊各項建設,加緊鍛造奪控綜合製權、佔據戰場主動的能力手段,更要遵循現代戰爭制勝機理,靈活運用“總體戰”“認知戰”“跨域戰” 「智能戰」等戰法,以降維打擊、非對稱打擊等打法,化劣勢為勝勢,變被動為主動,在「以能擊不能」中掌控作戰制權,打贏殲滅戰。




結構力決定戰鬥力,結構編成先進適用是戰鬥力多能、強大的重要前提。資訊時代,只有透過新舊作戰力量的聯合運用,實現新質能力與傳統能力的有機融合,進而建構集多種能力於一體的新型力量編組,才能促進作戰體系整體優化與優勢聚合,精準控製作戰節奏、作戰時空、作戰行動和作戰過程。在2020年的納卡衝突中,阿塞拜疆對有人和無人作戰力量採取了靈活編組模式,用價格低廉的安-2無人機引誘亞美尼亞防空系統開火,用哈比-2反雷達無人機和TB -2察打一體無人機跟進打擊,一舉摧毀亞方十餘套防空系統,進而從容打掉亞方地面裝甲部隊。



來源:解放軍報 | 2022年07月07日 08:OO

Chinese Military to Emphasize Technical Cognition as The Foundation for Victory



Never before has scientific and technological power had such a profound impact on the future of the military and the outcome of wars, and never before has it been such a powerful support for a strong military to win wars.

The so-called technological cognition is the ability to recognize and grasp the performance, value and development trend of technology with the goal of promoting scientific and technological innovation and application, which is prominently reflected in the sensitivity, understanding, discrimination and control of technology. In today’s era, science and technology are becoming the core combat power of modern warfare, and the technological content has become a key indicator for measuring the quality of military construction. Faced with unprecedented opportunities and challenges, if technological cognition cannot adapt to the new requirements of the development of the times, it will be difficult to inject momentum into the generation and improvement of combat power, and it will be difficult to win the important weight to win the future.

Improving technical cognition is not only a “question to be answered” for professional and technical personnel, but also a “must-choose question” for every officer and soldier. From the perspective of the realization process of technical value and effectiveness, if the invention and creation of technology is “primary value”, then the effective use of technology is “secondary value”. Accelerating the pace of scientific and technological innovation depends on the broadening of the knowledge horizons of professional and technical personnel, keeping a close eye on the forefront of science and technology, and constantly making new breakthroughs in the research and development of forward-looking, strategic, and disruptive technologies. With more new inventions and creations in the field of military science and technology, we can increase our contribution to the construction of the army and the growth of combat effectiveness, and actively seize the commanding heights of military technology competition. The transformation and application of scientific and technological achievements depends on the officers and soldiers, especially the leading cadres at all levels, to speed up the updating of knowledge and improve their scientific and technological literacy, so as to enhance and tap the application value of technology with scientific cognition and thorough understanding of science and technology, ensure that scientific and technological achievements are transformed into real combat effectiveness, and improve the ability to prepare for war at a higher starting point and level. Obviously, from scientific and technological innovation to scientific and technological application, it is a “value-added” process that is closely connected, mutually promoted, and focused. It is a process of seeking to win through science and technology and releasing the combat effectiveness of technology to a greater extent. Technical cognition is the internal support that runs through it and demonstrates people’s active role and creative talent. We must take improving the scientific and technological literacy of officers and soldiers as a basic task. We must have political and military minds as well as scientific and technological minds. Scientific and technological literacy and scientific and technological thinking are based on and built on technological cognition. The higher the technological cognition, the stronger the innovation and creativity in the use of science and technology, and the greater the effect of promoting the growth of combat effectiveness.

Improving technical cognition is not only the key to mastering modern weapons and equipment, but also the move to accelerate the innovation of military theory and combat theory. With the rapid development of military technology, especially emerging technologies such as information, intelligence, stealth, and unmanned, the high-tech content of weapons and equipment is getting higher and higher, the replacement cycle is getting shorter and shorter, and the correlation and coupling between various types of weapons and equipment are getting stronger and stronger, and the system application characteristics are becoming more and more prominent. From a realistic perspective, insufficient technical cognition is a prominent shortcoming that restricts the mastery and use of weapons and equipment, and there is even a phenomenon that troops cannot “play” without the accompanying support of manufacturer technical personnel in exercises. Facing the new development trend of weapons and equipment, from mastering skills to exploring potential, from enhancing the effectiveness of systematic application to improving the ability of actual combat application, it is inseparable from improving technical cognition, thereby realizing the organic combination of people and weapons and equipment and obtaining a new “growth pole” in combat capability. It should also be noted that modern technology is penetrating into the military field with unprecedented strength, depth and breadth. The new military technology form accelerates the reconstruction of military theory and military system form, bringing about the deep interaction and deep integration of military technology and military theory, making technical cognition the “catalyst” of new combat theory. Practice has shown that without a thorough understanding of aviation technology, there will be no air combat theories such as air superiority; without a thorough understanding of information technology, there will be no information combat theories such as information superiority; without a thorough understanding of space technology, there will be no space combat theories such as “high frontier”. Similarly, if there is a lack of thorough understanding of the new features of artificial intelligence such as data-driven, human-machine collaboration, cross-border integration, and autonomous control, it will be impossible to create new theories and tactics such as intelligent combat and unmanned combat. Only with a technological cognitive advantage can we truly transform the military technology advantage into a theoretical leadership advantage and even a battlefield victory advantage.

Improving technology awareness is not only a way to distinguish the authenticity of technology and guard against technology fraud, but also a need to keenly perceive the development trend of military science and technology. It is worth being highly vigilant that Western media often promote and hype some so-called new technologies and new concepts, playing specious tricks. If you lack the ability to discern, cannot distinguish the true from the false, and believe everything you hear, you will inevitably fall into the technology trap set by others and become passive. Back then, the Soviet Union was led by the nose by the “Star Wars Plan” of the United States, and was confused by the Americans’ hype and deliberate fraud, which ultimately affected the entire military combat capability construction and the lesson was extremely painful. In the face of new opportunities and challenges brought about by the new round of scientific and technological revolution, we must maintain a high degree of technical acumen and insight, recognize the dominant direction and characteristics of the times in the development of military science and technology, and accurately grasp the trend of weapons and equipment developing in the direction of long-range precision, intelligence, stealth, and unmanned. The continuous emergence of disruptive technologies is profoundly changing the mode of generating combat power. Trend: new breakthroughs in high-tech will accelerate the development of new combat forces. Those military technologies that “change the rules of the game” will accelerate the evolution of war forms and combat methods. The integration of military technology and civilian technology is becoming deeper and deeper. We will strive to plan according to the situation, act according to the situation, and follow the trend, and make greater efforts to promote the development of the military through science and technology. Only by deepening the research on war and combat issues from the perspective of technological change, recognizing and grasping the characteristics, laws and winning mechanisms of informationized warfare from the influence of scientific and technological factors, and seeking breakthroughs in the innovation of combat theories and tactics by tapping into the effectiveness of technology, can we promote the precise and effective implementation of the strategy of developing the military through science and technology, lay a solid foundation and increase confidence for our military to remain invincible in future wars.

國語 中文:







Chinese Military Strategy for Identifying Key Targets During Cognitive Confrontation Campaign Planning



Cognitive domain combat targets refer to the specific role of cognitive domain combat. In cognitive domain combat, compared with combat targets, combat targets solve the problem of precise aiming, that is, to let commanders understand and grasp the precise coordinates of what to hit, where to hit, and to what extent. Only by deeply understanding the connotation and characteristics of cognitive domain combat targets can we accurately find key targets through appearances and thus seize the initiative in future combat.

Cognitive focus that influences behavioral choices

The cognitive focus is the “convergence point” of the cognitive subject’s multi-dimensional thinking cognition in war activities. As a dynamic factor, it affects the cognitive process and behavioral results. Generally speaking, the cognitive factors that affect individual behavioral choices in war activities mainly include political attribute cognition, interest-related cognition, group belonging cognition, risk loss cognition, emotional orientation cognition, war morality cognition, etc. For war activities and groups or individuals who pay attention to war activities, the cognitive focus that affects their attitudes, tendencies and behaviors is not the same. Judging from the local wars and regional conflicts in the world in recent years, there are obvious differences in the cognitive focus of different groups or individuals. Politicians pay more attention to political attribute cognition and interest-related cognition, those who may intervene in the war pay more attention to risk loss cognition and interest-related cognition, ordinary people pay more attention to interest-related cognition and emotional orientation cognition, and people in other countries outside the region generally pay more attention to war morality cognition and group belonging cognition because their own interests will not be directly lost. In combat practice, foreign militaries are good at targeting the cognitive focus of different objects, accurately planning topics, and pushing related information to induce specific behavioral choices. For example, before the Gulf War, the Hill Norton public relations company fabricated the non-existent “incubator incident” by using Naira, the daughter of the Kuwaiti ambassador to the United States, as a “witness” to show the “inhumanity” of the Iraqi army, induce the American people’s ethical and moral cognition, and then support the US government to send troops to participate in the Gulf War.

Style preferences that constrain command decisions

Cognitive style directly affects decision-making behavior preferences. Cognitive style refers to the typical way of individual cognition, memory, thinking, and problem solving. According to the preference of command decision-making style, commanders can be divided into calm cognitive style and impulsive cognitive style. Commanders with calm cognitive style pay attention to accuracy but not speed in the decision-making process. The quality of the decisions they make is high, but they are prone to fall into the comparison and analysis of various intelligence information sources and overemphasize the accuracy and objectivity of information analysis. Commanders with calm cognitive style are often easily disturbed by the diverse and diverse information stimulation in battlefield cognitive offensive and defensive operations, and their mental energy is easily disturbed and dissipated, which may lead to missed opportunities. Commanders with impulsive cognitive style pay attention to speed but not accuracy. The decision-making reaction speed is fast, but the quality is not high. They are easily emotional and prone to conflict with team members. Commanders with impulsive cognitive style are also prone to over-interpret the ambiguous external security environment, and constantly look for “evidence” to strengthen and verify individual erroneous thinking, narrowing individual attention and leading to command decision-making deviations. In combat practice, foreign armies pay more attention to analyzing the decision-making style of commanders of combat opponents, and then select specific information to influence them psychologically. For example, during the U.S. invasion of Panama, when besieging the hiding place of Panamanian President Noriega, the U.S. military repeatedly played rock and heavy metal music, and used language that stimulated and humiliated Noriega to carry out cognitive and psychological attacks on him, causing Noriega to gradually collapse physically and mentally.

Backdoor channel to control thinking and cognition

Once a computer is infected with a “Trojan” virus, it will send a connection request to the hacker control terminal at a specific time. Once the connection is successful, a backdoor channel will be formed, allowing the hacker to control the computer at will. Similarly, the human brain also has a cognitive “backdoor” and may be controlled by others. Cognitive psychologists have found that by sending information to the target object’s audio-visual perception channel, carefully pushing information content that the target object recognizes and accepts, catering to the target object’s existing experience memory, conforming to the target object’s thinking habits, and stimulating the target object’s emotional pain points, it is possible to control and interfere with the target object’s cognition and promote its instinctive emotional and behavioral reactions. With the support of cutting-edge cognitive science and technology, using the two modes of automatic start and control processing of brain information processing, the target object can easily fall into a “cognitive cocoon”. In cognitive domain operations, by immersing individuals in massive amounts of artificially constructed information, and continuously providing them with “evidence” to prove that their judgments and cognitions are “correct”. Over time, the individual’s cognitive vision becomes smaller and smaller, and the ability to perceive the external environment gradually decreases. Eventually, they will not be able to see the truth of the matter and will be immersed in the “cognitive cocoon” and unable to extricate themselves. When foreign militaries conduct operations in the cognitive domain, they often target their opponents’ cognitive biases on a certain issue and continuously push situational information and intelligence information through various channels to support their opponents’ so-called “correct cognition,” causing errors and deviations in their opponents’ command decisions.

Sensory stimuli that induce attention

Effective perceptual stimulation is the first prerequisite for attracting the attention of the target object. The human brain will perceive and react to stimuli within the perceptual range. Cognitive psychology experimental research has found that information such as dynamic, dangerous, relevant, survival safety, and contrast between the past and the present is more likely to attract the attention of the human brain. In the era of intelligence, the psychological cognitive process of the target object often follows the law of “attracting attention, cultivating interest, actively searching, strengthening memory, actively sharing, and influencing others”. In combat, foreign troops often use exclusive revelations, intelligence leaks, authoritative disclosures, on-site connections, and other methods, and cleverly use exaggeration, contrast, association, metaphor, suspense, and contrast to push information that subverts common sense, has cognitive conflicts, and has strong contrasts to attract the attention of the target object. For example, the “Lin Qi rescue incident” created by the US military in the Iraq War and the “Gaddafi Golden Toilet” in the Libyan War mostly choose stories familiar to the audience as the blueprint, hiding the purpose and embedding the viewpoint in the story plot, which attracted the attention of the general public. In addition, the human brain will also process stimuli outside the perceptual range. In recent years, the military of Western countries has attached great importance to the research of subthreshold information stimulation technology, and has developed subthreshold visual information implantation technology, subthreshold auditory information implantation technology, subthreshold information activation technology, subconscious sound manipulation technology of the nervous system, etc., continuously expanding the application scope of neurocognitive science and technology in the military field.

Meta-value concepts that give rise to cognitive resonance

In cognitive theory, cognitive resonance refers to information that can cross the cognitive gap between the two parties and trigger the ideological and psychological resonance and cognitive empathy of both parties, thereby achieving the deconstruction and reconstruction of the other party’s cognitive system. In cognitive domain warfare, this cognitive energy-gathering effect is not a simple concentration of power, but an internal accumulation of system synergy. Under the diffusion and dissemination of modern information media, this cognitive resonance effect can spread rapidly to all parts of the world in a short period of time, and produce secondary indirect psychological effects or more levels of derivative psychological effects, presenting a state of cumulative iteration. Once it exceeds the psychological critical point, it will present a state of psychological energy explosion, thereby changing the direction or outcome of the event. The targets that can induce this cognitive resonance are mainly value beliefs, moral ethics, common interests, etc. In war, if one party touches or violates human meta-values, common emotional orientation, etc., it is very easy to induce collective condemnation, bear the accusation of violating human morality, and fall into a moral trough. For example, a photo during the Vietnam War shows a group of Vietnamese children, especially a 9-year-old girl, running naked on the road because of burns after being attacked by US napalm bombs. In 1972, this photo caused a huge sensation after it was published, setting off an anti-war wave in the United States and even the world, and accelerating the end of the Vietnam War.

Cognitive gaps in a split cognitive system

In daily life, seemingly hard steel is very easy to break due to the brittleness of the material due to factors such as low temperature environment, material defects, and stress concentration. The same is true for the cognitive system. Cognitive gaps refer to the cracks, pain points, weaknesses, and sensitive points in the cognitive thinking of the target object, which are mainly manifested as the individual’s worry that he is unable to cope with or adapt to the environment, and under the influence of anxiety, cognitive vulnerability is formed. The experience of security threats, the looseness of group structure, the confusion of beliefs and ideals, and the loss of voice of authoritative media will all cause cognitive conflicts and tearing of the target object. In cognitive domain operations, sometimes seemingly powerful combat opponents hide a large number of thinking cracks and psychological weaknesses behind them. Often a news event can shake the cognitive framework of the combat opponent and puncture the cognitive bubble. In addition, this cognitive psychological conflict will also cause moral damage and psychological trauma to individuals. In recent years, the U.S. and Western countries’ troops carrying out overseas missions have faced “enemies disguised as civilians” that appear anytime and anywhere, and their uncertainty about the battlefield environment has continued to increase. They generally lack the perception of the significance of combat, and are filled with guilt and sin. A large number of soldiers developed post-traumatic stress disorder, and the number of self-harm, post-war suicides and crimes on the battlefield increased sharply. The number of veterans who committed suicide even exceeded the number of deaths on the battlefield. (Author’s unit: Political College of National Defense University)

Source: PLA Daily, National Defense University














日常生活中,看似堅硬的鋼鐵,受低溫環境、材質缺陷、應力集中等因素影響,非常容易因材料脆性而斷裂,認知體係也是如此。認知縫隙是指目標對象認知思考中的裂縫、痛點、弱點與敏感點,主要表現為個體擔心自己沒有能力應對或無法適應環境的想法,並在焦慮情緒的作用下,構成認知脆弱性。安全威脅的經驗、團體結構的鬆散、信念理想的迷惘、權威媒介的失聲等,都會使得目標物出現認知上的衝突與撕裂。認知域作戰中,有時看似強大的作戰對手,背後卻潛藏著大量的思維裂隙與心理弱點,往往一個新聞事件就能動搖作戰對手的認知框架,刺破認知泡沫。此外,這種認知心理衝突也會使個體產生道德損傷和心理創傷。近年來,執行海外任務的美西方國家軍隊面對隨時隨地出現的“偽裝成平民的敵人”,對戰場環境的不確定感不斷提升,普遍缺乏作戰意義感知,進而內心充滿內疚與罪惡。大量士兵產生戰爭創傷後壓力障礙,戰場自殘自傷、戰後自殺與犯罪人數激增,參戰老兵自殺人數甚至超過戰場死亡人數。 (作者單位:國防大學政治學院)



中國網絡衝突討論,信息與研究 // Chinese Cyber Conflict Discussions, Information & Research