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Posted By: Tom Ryan on: 05/09/2010 11:41:19 EDT
Subject: Signal Corps as C3 or C3I

Message Detail:
Contemplating the significance of the establishment of the Signal Corps during the CW, it seems to me that it was the first technicaly-oriented C3 (command, control and oommunications) or even C3I (the three C's plus intelligence) system in the history of warfare. Prior to this time, C3 was a matter of voice commands, the use of musical instruments (drums, trumpets), or couriers on foot or horseback to convey the desire of the commanding officers during combat. Now, during the CW, for the first time battlefield commanders could rely on a combination of field telegraph and flag/torch signals to gain better control over events, and could communicate direction to the troops much faster and over much longer distances. Since the SC also had an information gathering responsibility (stations of observation), the fourth dimension of intelligence seems appropritate along with the three C's. Also, in the modern sense of C3I, the SC during the CW could be considered both a strategic and tactical system. A SC capability permitted the CW commander to gather strategic information and employ this data for tactical purposes.
Appreciate any comments you may have on this subject. Tom
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