Ascertaining validity in the abstract realm of PMESII simulation models an analysis of the Peace Support Operations Model (PSOM)
Marlin, Benjamin J.
Lucas, Thomas W.
Howell, Seth A.
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The Department of Defense has recently declared that irregular warfare is as strategically important as traditional warfare. Unfortunately, there is a dearth of mature training and analysis tools that can be used to support contemporary military operations. One popular wargaming simulation is the campaign-level Peace Support Operations Model (PSOM). This thesis provides a quantitative analysis of PSOM. The results are based on over 75,000 simulated runs of an Operation Iraqi Freedom scenario. The study concludes with the identification of the critical factors within PSOM, recommended potential uses for the model, an accuracy assessment, and an assessment of the risks assumed by using the model. Results indicate that the critical factors within the model are indicative of contemporary operations. PSOM should be used for its original purpose, as a wargame to further study the societal implications of modern military operations. As a wargame, PSOM has strong potential as a high-level staff and leader training tool and as a planning aid for course of action development. Within the confines of this study, the model proved limited in its ability to model changes in force capabilities. Due to its limited ability to model uncertainties in irregular warfare without the human-in-the-loop, or give multiple potential outcomes, further development and analysis is required before the model is used for large scale analysis.
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