Editor’s Note: The annual National Defense Industrial Association (NDIA) Special Operations Forces Industry Conference (SOFIC) symposium was held virtually for the first time this week. U.S. Special Operations Command (SOCOM) commander Army Gen. Richard Clarke described three types of war the military and SOCOM must prepare for: “a war on extremism, a war of influence, and a war for talent.”
Clarke told the online audience that during his time visiting SOF in Afghanistan in 2019, commanders spent more than 60 percent of their time working in the information space. Clarke stressed that great power competition is about influence and noted the need to compete for cyber talent to dominate the space. “We need coders,” he said.