Attrition Modeling in the Presence of Decoys: An Operations-other-than-war Motivation
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Under various operational conditions, in particular in operations other than war (OOTW) or peacekeeping, an intervening force, here Blue, must occasionally engage in attrition warfare with an opposing force, here Red, that is intermingled with noncombatants. Desirably, Red armed actives are targeted, and not the unarmed noncombatants. This article describes some simple Lanchesterian attrition models that reflect a certain capacity of Blue to discriminate noncombatants from armed and active Red opponents. An explicit extension of the Lanchester square law results: Blue’s abstinence concerning the indiscriminate shooting of civilians mixed with Red’s is essentially reflected in a lower Blue rate of fire and less advantageous exchange rate. The model applies to other situations involving decoys, and reflects the value of a discrimination capability.
Naval Research Logistics, 44 (1997), 507-514.