Exam Code: MB-330 Practice exam 2023 by Killexams.com team
MB-330 Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations, Supply Chain Management

Implement product information management (25-30%)
Create and manage products
• create a product and product variants
• create Bill of materials (BOMs)
• identify the purpose and capabilities of the Product Configuration models
• create and configure category hierarchies
• create product attributes

Configure products for supply chain management
• create and manage inventory dimensions
• create Item groups and Item model groups
• create and print product labels
• create and assign bar codes
• configure Item coverage
• configure product compliance processes

Manage inventory pricing and costing
• configure inventory costing
• configure costing versions
• configure and manage commodity pricing
• create purchase, sales, and trade agreements
• create smart rounding rules

Implement inventory management (20-25%)
Configure inventory management
• identify the purpose of inventory forecasting
• set up inventory and warehouse parameters
• configure and perform Quality control and Quality management processes
• configure inventory valuation reports
• configure ABC classification
• configure inventory closing components
• implement inventory breakdowns

Manage and process inventory activities
• create and process inventory and warehouse journals
• create and process transfer orders
• create and process chain orders
• manage direct delivery orders
• process quarantine orders
• process quality orders
• perform inventory closing and adjustments
• apply inventory blocking

Implement and manage supply chain processes (25-30%)
Implement procurement and sourcing
• create and manage purchase requisitions, requests for quotes (RFQs), and purchase orders (POs)
• create and manage vendor catalogs
• configure Purchase Order change management
• configure and apply vendor rebates
• implement and manage consignment inventory
• configure and test Vendor collaboration portal
• manage over and under deliveries and delivery schedules

Implement common sales and marketing features
• configure quotations, sales orders, and return orders
• configure sales groups and commissions
• configure and manage up-sell, cross-sell, discounts, and price groups
• configure customer and prospect searches
• implement and manage leads and prospects
• configure inter-company Trade relations

Implement advanced sales and marketing features
• configure brokers and royalties
• configure trade allowances and customer rebates
• implement and process foreign trade
• configure and process Vendor 1099

Implement warehouse management and transportation management and perform business processes (25-30%)
Configure warehouse management
• implement components for warehouse management
• implement location directives
• implement Inventory Statuses
• implement Waves
• implement Loads
• implement shipments
• implement Work
• implement mobile devices

Perform warehouse management processes
• identify inventory movement processes
• perform cycle counting
• use mobile devices for inbound and outbound processes
• implement containerization and packaging
• process inbound orders
• process outbound orders
• perform cluster picking
• process shipments
• identify and apply the replenishment process

Implement transportation management and perform business processes
• configure container management
• configure and manage transportation management
• perform planning and executing of loads and shipments
• configure and generate freight bills and invoices
• identify and configure route and rate engines
• configure and use dock appointment scheduling
• perform transportation processes by using the load planning workbench

Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations, Supply Chain Management
Microsoft Operations, mission
Killexams : Microsoft Operations, mission - BingNews https://killexams.com/pass4sure/exam-detail/MB-330 Search results Killexams : Microsoft Operations, mission - BingNews https://killexams.com/pass4sure/exam-detail/MB-330 https://killexams.com/exam_list/Microsoft Killexams : What is Microsoft’s approach to AI?

Fri, 17 Feb 2023 03:19:00 -0600 en-US text/html https://news.microsoft.com/source/features/ai/microsoft-approach-to-ai/
Killexams : 3 Things About BigBear.ai That Smart Investors Know 3 Things About BigBear.ai That Smart Investors Know © Provided by The Motley Fool 3 Things About BigBear.ai That Smart Investors Know

Just a few months ago, few investors were paying attention to BigBear.ai Holdings (NYSE: BBAI). For much of the past year, its market cap was below $250 million, and shares were down over 90% from their all-time high. In 2023, however, the company's market cap has swollen, and retail investors are taking an interest.

There's nothing wrong with that, but cautious investors may wonder if eager BigBear.ai stock buyers have gotten ahead of themselves. It may require some self-reflection to determine whether any profits made this year on BigBear.ai stock were a function of skill or just luck, and with that, whether it's time for well-timed shareholders to take the money and run.

Not all AI is the same

It's no secret the popularity of OpenAI's conversational AI program, ChatGPT, has thrust practically anything and everything with a machine learning angle into the spotlight. Seeking a purer and more direct AI play than, say, Microsoft or Alphabet, some folks may be tempted to jump into the market with BigBear.ai stock.

The newcomers' enthusiasm would be misplaced, however. If the hype is about ChatGPT in particular and conversational AI in general, then BigBear.ai doesn't fit squarely into that category. BigBear.ai describes itself as a "leader in AI-powered analytics and cyber engineering solutions" in support of "mission-critical operations." It caters more to the U.S. defense and intelligence community with cybersecurity-related machine-learning services than to collegiate term-paper writers and businesses looking to automate basic customer-service functionalities. BigBear.ai reported winning a major contract with the U.S. Air Force on Jan. 12, for example, that drove a 260% one-day gain for its stock.

So if you're specifically trying to catch the conversational AI wave that has been making headlines, don't hop on the BigBear.ai bandwagon -- which is already quite crowded in the wake of the exact ChatGTP craze -- just yet.

BigBear.ai's cash position has dwindled

Even if you fully understand what BigBear.ai does and how it's not exactly in the same category as OpenAI, there are still other red flags to consider. For example, the company has a consistent track record of quarterly earnings misses. Its net loss widened drastically from $3.1 million in Q3 2021 to $16.1 million in Q3 2022.

Perhaps the most glaring financial issue with BigBear.ai, though, is the company's declining capital position. Even as revenue has remained fairly steady, the company's cash and equivalents shrank from $68.9 million at the end of 2021 to $22.0 million as of Sept. 30, 2022. To bolster its balance sheet, BigBear.ai closed a private placement that, between the shares and the warrants that could be used to purchase shares, amounts to the potential sale of nearly 28 million shares (or a 22% addition to shares outstanding). That's one way to generate a quick $25 million in gross proceeds, but one-time share sales won't solve the company's fiscal challenges once and for all.

BigBear.ai was lucky to avert delisting

A third thing that smart investors know about BigBear.ai is the company received a noncompliance notification (i.e., a delisting threat) from the New York Stock Exchange late last year. BigBear.ai was determined to be in violation of Rule 802.01C, which requires any NYSE-listed company's shares to maintain an average closing price of at least $1 for 30 consecutive trading days.

BigBear.ai stock had, indeed, fallen below the $1 cutoff point for about five weeks before its Air Force contract saved the day. BigBear.ai stock surged as high as $6.77 per share before coming down to about $4 as of this writing. The sudden boom in everything AI-related isn't an event that's likely to repeat itself anytime soon, and if the BigBear.ai share price makes its way below $1 per share again, there may not be a bullish announcement waiting to save the day the next time around.

At that point, BigBear.ai could enact a reverse stock split, though that's no more permanent a solution than the company's exact share sale. That's something BigBear.ai's current and prospective shareholders must consider carefully.


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Sat, 18 Feb 2023 21:50:00 -0600 en-US text/html https://www.msn.com/en-us/money/other/3-things-about-bigbear-ai-that-smart-investors-know/ar-AA17FH3z
Killexams : Microsoft: Iran unit behind Charlie Hebdo hack-and-leak op

After the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo launched a cartoon contest to mock Iran’s ruling cleric, a state-backed Iranian cyber unit struck back with a hack-and-leak campaign that was designed to provoke fear with the claimed pilfering of a big subscriber database, Microsoft security researchers say.

The FBI blames the same Iranian cyber operators, Emennet Pasargad, for an influence operation that sought to interfere in the 2020 U.S. presidential election, the tech giant said in a blog published Friday. Iran has in exact years stepped up false-flag cyber operations as a tool for discrediting foes.

Calling itself “Holy Souls” and posing as hacktivists, the group claimed in early January to have obtained personal information on 200,000 subscribers and Charlie Hebdo merchandise buyers, according to Microsoft’s Digital Threat Analysis Center.

© Provided by New York Post Iran’s hack of Charlie Hebdo has caused fear among subscribers.AP

As proof of the data theft, “Holy Souls” released a 200-record trial with names, phone numbers and home and email addresses of Charlie Hebdo subscribers that “could put the magazine’s subscribers at risk for online or physical targeting” by extremists. The group then advertised the supposed complete data cache on several dark web sites for $340,000.

Microsoft said it did not know whether anyone purchased the cache.

A representative for Charlie Hebdo said Friday that the newspaper would not comment on the Microsoft research. Iran’s mission to the United Nations did not immediately respond to a request for comment Friday.

The Jan. 4 trial release coincided with the publication of Charlie Hebdo’s cartoon contest issue. Entrants were asked to draw offensive caricatures of Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

The French newspaper Le Monde Checked multiple victims of the leak from the sample, Microsoft said. The Iranian cyber operators sought to boost news of the hack-and-leak operation — and fuel outrage at the cartoon edition — through fake French “sock-puppet” accounts on social media platforms that included Twitter, Microsoft said.

The operation coincided with verbal attacks by Tehran condemning Charlie Hebdo’s “insult.”

© Provided by New York Post The hack-and-leak has led to major outrage nationwide.AP

The provocatively irreverent magazine has a long history of publishing vulgar cartoons which critics consider deeply insulting to Muslims. Two French-born al-Qaida extremists attacked the newspaper’s office in 2015, killing 12 cartoonists, and it Charlie Hebdo has been the target of other attacks over the years.

The magazine billed the Khamenei caricature contest as a show of support for nationwide antigovernment protests that have convulsed Iran since the mid-September death of Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old woman detained by Iran’s morality police for allegedly violating the country’s strict Islamic dress code.

After the cartoon issue was published, Iran shut down a decades-old French research institute. Last week, it announced sanctions targeting more than 30 European individuals and entities, including three senior Charlie Hebdo staffers. The sanctions are largely symbolic as they bar travel to Iran and allow its authorities to block bank accounts and confiscate property in Iran.

According to the FBI, Emennet Pasargad authored what amounted to a relatively ham-fisted campaign to interfere with the 2020 U.S. presidential election. The group obtained confidential U.S. voter information from at least one state election website and sent threatening email messages to intimidate voters posing as the far-right group Proud Boys, the FBI says.

Emennet Pasargad has also, since 2018, conducted cyber-operations targeting news, shipping, airlines, oil and petrochemical, financial, and telecommunications, in the U.S., Europe, and the Middle East, the FBI says. The U.S. newspaper chain Lee Enterprises was among the suspected targets, according to the Council on Foreign Relations.

The group’s attacks since 2020 have primarily targeted Israel, the FBI says. They follow a pattern of intrusion, theft, data leak and then amplification through social media and online forums. In some cases destructive malware has been used.

Fri, 03 Feb 2023 04:25:18 -0600 en-US text/html https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/microsoft-iran-unit-behind-charlie-hebdo-hack-and-leak-op/ar-AA17579x
Killexams : News Corp cuts driven by Murdoch’s mission to prop up news assets

The shrinking of Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation by 1,250 roles after a plunge in profits of almost a third serves as a stark reminder that the billionaire mogul’s abortive attempt to reunite his media empire was built on a mission to protect his weakest publishing assets.

Less than three weeks ago Murdoch scrapped his decade-long ambition to reunify News Corp – home to assets including the Sun, Times, the Australian and Wall Street Journal, with the immensely profitable Fox, broadcaster of Fox News and prime NFL games – reluctantly admitting it was “not optimal” after a backlash from investors and his younger son, James.

On Thursday, News Corp announced that 5% of its global workforce is to be cut, a move that will result in $130m (£107m) in annual savings, after profits plunged by 30% in the final quarter amid a fall in advertising and a slump in business at its book publishing and digital real estate operations.

The unavoidable impact of macroeconomic conditions aside – tech and media businesses from Facebook-parent Meta, Google and Microsoft to Dell and Disney have announced tens of thousands of job cuts – the results will be viewed by some investors as a vindication of opposition to the merger.

Investors in Fox, a cash cow that makes more than $3bn in profits annually, had been concerned about being used as a “financial umbrella” to prop up weaker publishing assets that newspaper-loving Rupert is loth to cull.

News Corp’s chief executive, Robert Thomson, Rupert’s right-hand man and fellow Australian, said the slump was a blip that was “more ephemeral than eternal”, confidently pointing to the record profit of $1.7bn the company made in its most exact financial year to the end of June.

And yet some News Corp investors argue that the business could be worth as much as $23bn, and that its market value is languishing at $12bn because of the drag of underperforming businesses in the portfolio.

“Breaking up the News Corp stable is likely to release more value for shareholders in due course,” says Claire Enders, founder of Enders Analysis. “Rupert Murdoch did not have convincing arguments for value add.”

Profits in the company’s news media business – the New York Post in the US and newspaper operations in Australia and the UK, which also includes radio operations such as TalkSport and the Piers Morgan-led TalkTV – slumped 47% year-on-year in the final three months of the year.

In the UK, where the operations are run by Rebekah Brooks, revenues slumped 10%. Brooks had been angling for a top role if the News Corp/Fox merger had come off.

While the company pointed to strong digital revenue growth at the Sun, which is almost back at break even having once been the source of hundreds of millions in profits annually, it also noted another $22m in “higher costs” in the quarter attributed to operations including the expensive running of TalkTV. There, big-name signings include Piers Morgan on a reported £15m a year deal.

Soaring newsprint prices also continues to be a huge, and increasing, financial burden with the transition to a digitally led future still some way off – digital revenues still account for just 37% of the total for the division.

With Silicon Valley giants such as Google and Facebook under commercial pressure for the first time in tech history, it is unlikely that the hugely lucrative advertising deals trumpeted by News Corp, and other leading publishers, are likely to be renewed on such generous terms.

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News Corp’s HarperCollins book publishing operation suffered the worst, with profits down 52%.

And the digital real estate businesses championed by his elder son, Lachlan, which have been a metronomically reliable source of profits that rocketed during the pandemic-fuelled housing boom, plunged by 28%.

“The reforms now under way at our businesses should create a solid platform for future profitability,” said Thomson in a call with investors.

Yet amid the carnage of the final quarter Dow Jones, the publisher of the Wall Street Journal and provider of business information services, continues to be a juggernaut pointing the way to a sustainable digital future.

Dow Jones was the only division of News Corp to report an increase in revenues in the final quarter and overtook the real estate operation to become the biggest contributor of profits at News Corp.

Digital subscriptions at the Wall Street Journal, where the former Sunday Times editor Emma Tucker recently became its first female editor in more than a century, grew by 9% year-on-year to 3.78m. Crucially, 84% of subscribers are digital-only.

Analysts estimate that Dow Jones, which Murdoch bought for $5.6bn in 2007, could be worth as much as $10bn if it were hived off.

“There will have to be much renewed discipline at News Corp,” says Enders. “We are always sympathetic to protecting plurality (everywhere) but it isn’t an argument the stock market has any time for. There is still time for digital transformation of those titles that can make it.”

Fri, 10 Feb 2023 05:34:00 -0600 Mark Sweney en text/html https://www.theguardian.com/media/2023/feb/10/news-corp-cuts-driven-by-murdoch-mission-to-prop-up-news-assets
Killexams : NASA's Geotail mission operations come to an end after 30 years

image: An artist's concept of the Geotail spacecraft. view more 

Credit: NASA

After 30 years in orbit, mission operations for the joint NASA-JAXA Geotail spacecraft have ended, after the failure of the spacecraft’s remaining data recorder.

Since its launch on July 24, 1992, Geotail orbited Earth, gathering an immense dataset on the structure and dynamics of the magnetosphere, Earth’s protective magnetic bubble. Geotail was originally slated for a four-year run, but the mission was extended several times due to its high-quality data return, which contributed to over a thousand scientific publications.

While one of Geotail’s two data recorders failed in 2012, the second continued to work until experiencing an anomaly on June 28, 2022. After attempts to remotely repair the recorder failed, the mission operations were ended on November 28, 2022.

“Geotail has been a very productive satellite, and it was the first joint NASA-JAXA mission,” said Don Fairfield, emeritus space scientist at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, and NASA’s first project scientist for Geotail until his retirement in 2008. “The mission made important contributions to our understanding of how the solar wind interacts with Earth’s magnetic field to produce magnetic storms and auroras.”

With an elongated orbit, Geotail sailed through the invisible boundaries of the magnetosphere, gathering data on the physical process at play there to help understand how the flow of energy and particles from the Sun reach Earth. Geotail made many scientific breakthroughs, including helping scientists understand how quickly material from the Sun passes into the magnetosphere, the physical processes at play at the magnetosphere’s boundary, and identifying oxygen, silicon, sodium, and aluminum in the lunar atmosphere.

The mission also helped identify the location of a process called magnetic reconnection, which is a major conveyor of material and energy from the Sun into the magnetosphere and one of the instigators of the aurora. This discovery laid the way for the Magnetospheric Multiscale mission, or MMS, which launched in 2015.

Over the years, Geotail collaborated with many of NASA’s other space missions including MMS, Van Allen Probes, Time History of Events and Macroscale Interactions during Substorms mission, Cluster, and Wind. With an orbit that took it as far as 120,000 miles from Earth at times, Geotail helped provide complementary data from remote parts of the magnetosphere to provide scientists a complete picture of how events seen in one area affect other regions. Geotail also paired with observations on the ground to confirm the location and mechanisms of how aurora form.

Although Geotail is done gathering new data, the scientific discoveries aren’t over. Scientists will continue to study Geotail’s data in the coming years.

By Mara Johnson-Groh

NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md.

Disclaimer: AAAS and EurekAlert! are not responsible for the accuracy of news releases posted to EurekAlert! by contributing institutions or for the use of any information through the EurekAlert system.

Tue, 17 Jan 2023 10:00:00 -0600 en text/html https://www.eurekalert.org/news-releases/977015
Killexams : The Role of Special Operations Forces in Great Power Competition

Seth Jones, Senior Vice President; Harold Brown Chair; and Director, International Security testified before the House Armed Services Subcommittee on Intelligence and Special Operations, on the changing face of irregular warfare, the role of U.S. Special Operations Forces, and how global competition is transforming how the United States and its adversaries use Special Operations Forces.

Thank you Chairman Bergman, Ranking Member Gallego, and distinguished Members of the Subcommittee on Intelligence and Special Operations for the opportunity to testify on “The Role of Special Operations in Great Power Competition.”

As I will outline in this testimony, U.S. Special Operations Forces (SOF) need to play an increasingly important role in competition with such countries as China, Russia, and Iran—particularly in the area of irregular warfare. Irregular warfare includes activities below the threshold of conventional (or regular) warfare—such as information operations, espionage, cyber operations, support to state and non-state partners, and economic coercion—designed to weaken adversaries as part of balance-of-power competition. The leading role of SOF in irregular warfare makes it important to ensure that SOF have a sufficient quality of personnel, mission readiness and resilience, a modernized force, and close relationships with interagency entities and foreign allies and partners.

My remarks are divided into four sections. The first section discusses global competition. The second focuses on irregular warfare. The third section highlights the role of SOF in irregular warfare. The fourth outlines implications for Congress.

I. Growing Competition

Competition between the United States and such countries as China, Russia, and Iran is likely overdetermined for several reasons, with significant repercussions for SOF.

First, these authoritarian regimes have political systems that are dramatically different from the United States and its democratic allies and partners. Take China, which is undemocratic and eschews a free press. In October 2022, Xi Jinping secured a historic third term as China’s leader, cementing his position as the most powerful leader since Mao Zedong.[1] There were no democratic elections. The Chinese government has also violently cracked down on democratic movements in the country, including in Hong Kong, and suppressed information through a “Great Firewall.” China’s digital firewall has banned over 18,000 websites that the government assessed had content unfavorable to China.[2]

Vladimir Putin has used the war in Ukraine to further crack down on political dissent. Iran also continues to repress its population, which has triggered numerous protests over the past several years. More broadly, there has been a decline in democracy across the globe with 16 straight years of a decrease in freedom, according to the non-partisan Freedom House.[3]

Second, the United States—along with its democratic allies and partners—have increasingly divergent economic systems from these regimes. Western countries remain committed to free market capitalism. But their competitors have increasingly rolled back free market policies. In a series of crackdowns against capitalism, for example, the Chinese Communist Party has placed strict controls on booming sectors, such as technology, real estate, and food delivery; large private companies; and wealthy individuals. In 2021 and 2022, for example, Chinese regulators scuttled Ant Group’s listing, fined Alibaba Group, blocked a Tencent-backed merger, and opened a stifling cybersecurity review into Didi Global just days after the ride-hailing firm went public in New York.[4] In addition, there is a close relationship between the PRC and Chinese companies, in which espionage is utilized to advance Chinese commercial and defense competitiveness.[5]

Third, these countries are challenging a Western-led international system that has been committed since World War II to free market international economic institutions, bilateral and regional security organizations, and democratic political norms.

II. Irregular Warfare

Despite this reality of competition, irregular warfare will likely be a major—if not the major—type of struggle between the United States and its competitors. Irregular warfare involves activities short of conventional and nuclear warfare that are designed to expand a country’s influence and legitimacy, as well as weaken its adversaries.[6] Irregular warfare includes numerous tools of statecraft that governments can use to shift the balance of power in their favor: information operations, cyber operations, support to state and non-state partners, covert action, espionage, and economic coercion.[7] Other government officials and scholars have used different terms—such as political warfare, hybrid warfare, gray zone activity, asymmetric conflict, and the indirect approach—to capture some or all of these activities.[8]

Some might object to the term “warfare” to describe non-violent activities, such as economic coercion and information operations. But that is not how the U.S.’s competitors see it. China has used terms like “three warfares” (or san zhong zhanfa), which involves public opinion, legal warfare, and psychological operations—none of which include the direct use of violence. Iran has utilized such terms as “soft war” (or jang-e narm) to describe such activities as propaganda and information operations.

Why will irregular warfare likely be the preeminent mode of conflict and competition? The answer lies in the existence of nuclear weapons, which will likely have a dampening effect on the probability of conventional—and nuclear—war between nuclear-armed powers.[9] Because of the destructive power of nuclear weapons, no nuclear states have engaged in conventional war with each other. There have been several close calls, such as the 1962 Cuban missile crisis and the 1999 crisis in Kargil between India and Pakistan. But conventional war between nuclear powers is risky.

The same logic holds between the United States, China, and Russia. The results of numerous wargames and analyses involving the United States and China, for example, highlight the costs and risks of conventional war.[10] According to one analysis, a U.S. war with China could reduce China’s gross domestic product (GDP) by between 25 and 35 percent and the U.S.’s GDP by between 5 and 10 percent.[11] Both the United States and China would also likely suffer huge numbers of military and civilian deaths and risk large-scale destruction of their military forces. If war expanded to include their allies—as it did during World War I, World War II, and the Korean War—economic and casualty figures could skyrocket even further. Escalation to nuclear war would significantly raise the military, economic, and environmental costs. While a war between the United States and China over Taiwan is not impossible, its destructiveness has made—and will likely continue to make—Beijing and Washington cautious.

Instead, the United States and its main competitors—especially China, Russia, and Iran—are likely to engage in irregular warfare as the daily method of competition. These authoritarian regimes have utilized numerous state and non-state organizations as surrogates against the United States and its allies and partners. Examples of key agencies include:

  • China: Parts of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA), Ministry of State Security (MSS), Ministry of Public Security (MPS), Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT), United Front Work Department (UFWD), Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA), and other state and non-state organizations such as hackers.
  • Russia: Parts of the Main Directorate of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation (GRU), Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR), Federal Security Service (FSB), Russian SOF (such as Spetsnaz), and other state and non-state entities such as the Wagner Group.
  • Iran: The Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Quds Force (IRGC-QF), parts of the Ministry of Intelligence (MOIS), and a range of entities linked to the IRGC-QF in Lebanon (such as Lebanese Hezbollah), Iraq (such as the Popular Mobilization Forces), Syria (such as Shia militias), Yemen (such as Ansar Allah, or the Houthi movement), and other countries.

The People’s Republic of China (PRC) has engaged in an aggressive irregular campaign designed to expand Chinese power and influence in the Indo-Pacific and the world more broadly. As Xi Jinping outlined, China must “adopt an asymmetrical strategy of catching up and overtaking” the United States and the West.[12] Chinese actions have included offensive cyber operations, information and disinformation campaigns, economic coercion (including through the Belt and Road Initiative and Digital Silk Road), and espionage against U.S. and other Western government agencies and corporations.

Russia has meddled in U.S. elections, waged a disinformation campaign against the United States on digital platforms, conducted an offensive cyber campaign against U.S. and Western government agencies and companies, and conducted a range of other activities such as assassinations and sabotage. Finally, Iran has waged an aggressive irregular campaign against the United States and its allies and partners across the Middle East using a range of partner forces. As the U.S. intelligence community concluded, “Iran’s hybrid approach to warfare—using both conventional and unconventional capabilities—will pose a threat to U.S. interests in the region for the foreseeable future. The IRGC-QF and its proxies will remain central to Iran’s military power.”[13]

III. SOF and Irregular Warfare

SOF need to play a major role in countering these countries, including through such core activities as:

  • Foreign internal defense, which involves efforts to build the capacity of foreign governments. This can include training and equipping partners in Europe that border Russia (such as Finland, Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, and Poland) and the Indo-Pacific that face a possible Chinese invasion (such as Taiwan). SOF are an essential part of foreign internal defense. These activities can also include broader efforts to conduct security force assistance.
  • Unconventional warfare, which includes operations to advise, assist, and accompany non-state partners resisting a hostile actor by operating with or through an underground, auxiliary, and guerrilla force.
  • Information operations—or Military Information Support Operations (MISO)—which involves activities to influence foreign audiences.

There are other critical SOF activities, such as special reconnaissance, civil affairs operations, direct action, counterterrorism, counter-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, counterinsurgency, and hostage rescue and recovery. Yet such activities as foreign internal defense, unconventional warfare, and information operations are core activities for irregular warfare.

Despite the irregular threat from China, Russia, and Iran, SOF face several major hurdles today. First, the United States—including the Department of Defense—is still too heavily weighted toward preparing for conventional war. Most of the wargames conducted by the Department of Defense and outside entities cover conventional war, including with China over Taiwan. U.S. planning scenarios, or operations plans (OPLANs), are also heavily geared toward conventional war. Long-term U.S. Department of Defense research and development, budget planning, training, and force structure are likewise concentrated on conventional war. Professional military education at such locations as the U.S. Army War College, United States Army Command and General Staff College, and National Defense University is heavily biased toward conventional war. To be clear, it is important for the United States to build conventional and nuclear capabilities to deter and—if deterrence fails—fight. Nevertheless, they can’t come at the expense of being adequately prepared to conduct irregular warfare.

Second, far too many individuals—including within the Department of Defense—focus on the direct action capabilities of SOF, but not such activities as foreign internal defense and unconventional warfare that are at the heart of irregular warfare. The activities of the U.S. Army’s 10th Special Forces Group, for example, were critical in building the capacity of Ukrainian military forces before and after the Russian invasion.

IV. Implications for Congress

SOF are critical to U.S. national security. They have played—and will continue to play—an important role in countering terrorist groups and responding to weapons of mass destruction incidents. But they will be increasingly important in competition with such countries as China, Russia, and Iran—especially in irregular warfare. The future impact of SOF will depend on the quality of SOF personnel (including their commitment to high ethical standards, leadership, and accountability), mission readiness and resilience (including the preservation of the force and family), modernization of the force, and relationship with other Department of Defense entities, the U.S. interagency, and foreign allies and partners.

Congress has an important budgetary and oversight role with SOF. The rest of this section focuses on four areas: Section 1202, a review of irregular warfare, Section 333, and information operations.

Section 1202: Section 1202 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2018 allows the Secretary of Defense to spend money annually to “provide support to foreign forces, irregular forces, groups, or individuals” that conduct irregular warfare activities.[14] This funding is critical to help SOF conduct irregular warfare. As Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mark Milley noted, Section 1202 “is a highly useful tool for enabling irregular warfare operations in support of the NDS’s emphasis on expanding the competitive space to deter and defeat coercion and aggression by revisionist powers and rogue regimes.”[15] Congress should consider extending and expanding funding for Section 1202 activities, building on the program’s success in Europe, the Indo-Pacific, Middle East, and other regions. Indeed, Section 1202 should be increased to facilitate efforts by SOF to conduct irregular warfare against China, Russia, and Iran—as well as their state and non-state surrogates.[16]

Review of Irregular Warfare: Congress should consider directing the Department of Defense to conduct an irregular warfare posture review, including an analysis and assessment of DoD’s organizational design for irregular warfare and the identification of any capability, resourcing, or authority gaps that could inhibit the Department of Defense’s ability to effectively conduct and synchronize irregular warfare activities around the globe. The study could focus on:

  • Roles and responsibilities for the planning and conduct of irregular warfare across the Department of Defense, including whether current structures are effectively supporting an integrated and appropriately resourced approach to irregular warfare.
  • Existing policy guidance and authorities, including whether they provide sufficient clarity and agility for the Department of Defense to conduct irregular warfare.
  • U.S. support to partner nations’ irregular warfare activities, including whether it is properly resourced and coordinated.

Section 333: Congress should direct the Department of Defense to report on how it prioritizes Section 333 “Authority to Build Capacity” funding, with specific focus on shortfalls and support to irregular warfare, as well as needs for authority modifications.[17] Section 333 of Title 10 of the U.S. Code (10 U.S.C. §333) gives the U.S. Secretary of Defense the authority to conduct or support programs to provide training and equipment to the national security forces of foreign countries.[18] The U.S. Department of Defense received roughly $1.4 billion annually through Section 333, allocated across the geographic commands. But very little of this funding supports irregular warfare. Based on the U.S.’s main effort to compete with China—as well as such countries as Russia and Iran—this low prioritization on irregular warfare needs to change. Congress can help.

Information Operations: The Department of Defense should increase its use of Military Information Support Operations (MISO) for Joint Force Commanders to achieve favorable outcomes in select foreign audiences, in coordination with interagency partners. As highlighted recently in Ukraine, state and non-state actors use information operations to compete for influence over target audiences in the political, military, economic, social, information, and infrastructure realms. China, Russia, and Iran are all involved in extensive information, disinformation, and misinformation campaigns against the United States and its allies and partners.

Thank you again for the opportunity to testify. As I have argued in this testimony, irregular warfare will likely be a major form of both competition and warfare between the United States and its main adversaries—such as China, Russia, and Iran. SOF are a critical component of irregular warfare. But the United States still has a long way to go in building a sufficiently-funded, organized, and coordinated irregular warfare campaign that includes SOF and other interagency organizations—such as the U.S. State Department, Treasury Department, and intelligence community—and foreign allies and partners.

Please consult PDF for references.

Wed, 08 Feb 2023 01:33:00 -0600 en text/html https://www.csis.org/analysis/role-special-operations-forces-great-power-competition
Killexams : Polaris Dawn: The trailblazing commercial mission of the Polaris Program

Polaris Dawn is the gate-opener mission to the larger Polaris Program, a set of at least three anticipated missions bankrolled by a billionaire. 

The mission will fly on a SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft no earlier than March 2023 and will be commanded by Jared Isaacman, the founder of payment provider Shift4. This will be Isaacman's second mission in space after paying for the Inspiration4 mission in 2021.