Skip to main content


The Golden Verses Of The Stoic

Seneca and Epictetus refer to the Golden Verses of Pythagoras , which happens to provide a good framework for developing a daily routine, bookended by morning and evening contemplative practices. Zeno of Citium , who founded Stoicism in 301 BC, expressed his doctrines in notoriously terse arguments and concise maxims.  However, Chrysippus, the third head of the Stoic school, wrote over 700 books fleshing these ideas out and adding complex arguments to support them. 

Propaganda - Description and Feel

PROPAGANDA IS EFFECTIVE BECAUSE it works on an emotional level. Most of our decisions are based on a combination between the perceived results of previous experience, the emotions we experience regarding the current situation, and logical analysis of the problem. Inside that mess is also perceived estimations of our skills, probable success, and evaluation of the forces and elements against us, if any.

What motivates us is not logic however, but emotion.

The propagandist uses symbols, attitudes and morals that are embedded in the target audience to control and limit the emotional state of his target. This is desirable because the emotional response is deep, powerful, long-lasting -- and not controlled by rational awareness or evaluation of the situation. An intellectual, rational response is not desired and is not sought.

There is a novel, one of my favorites by Philip K. Dick, We Will Remember It for you Wholesale, which posed a question -- If you remember spending six weeks as a Billionaire touring Europe and socializing among the world trenders. If it is a pure memory, wired into your matrix, did it happen? Did it? -- if it did, if the vacation could be authored, crafted by experienced and expert travelers, and tailored to your preferences and desires, would not that experience (which you could acquire in only a few hours, rather than six weeks) be more appealing than real travel to foreign lands with its reality of bungles and lost luggage and missing reservations, menacing dark streets, and weird toilet paper in the bathroom?

Words are Powerful tools and Terrifying Weapons, but they are not created inside the ether of a vacuum. You can hear the harbingers of war long before the movements and action bring tanks down the streets, or the Patriot Guards to lock-up the Militant-Freethinkers in cells fearing the threat of insurrections that such minds could postulate during times of war and instability. You can hear them if you know what you are listening for, if you are aware of the preferred melodies of the monger and the hawker.
Wars begin in the minds of men, it is in the minds of men that the defenses of peace must be constructed.

In this world --  our world -- in our time,
Propaganda is everywhere. 

It is ironic that in this world of ours, the citizenship of our Nation is so unaware of the  existence, of propaganda as a serious threat and  that to mention the word propaganda, often projects the image of Conspiracy Theories, complete with  hats made of aluminum foil. Propaganda is a word that brings to mind museum collections of posters by Walt Disney and Dr. Susses. We hear the word and visualize WWII, and old scarred film reels of Hitler shouting at the masses of a desperate country.

What we do not visualize is the USA Flag, the GOP, the Blue Donkey or the news story you watched today.We do not hear the voice of our minister, the voices of our social groups, or the preference of wording the corporation we work for publishes on the Web.

We can't imagine someone serious using such tactics today. Perhaps a small group of extremists with crazy agendas and bomb shelters in their basements -- but a war fought between countries using only Propaganda as their weapons?

Even if it was so, So What? Words tossed across borders are hardly a threat to be worried about when the kids are having trouble with their reading skills, the price of milk is rising, the cost of home insurance that will cover flooding is astronomical, and the manager mention something about cut-backs yesterday. Our Priorities rarely include maybe-fears of the last century.

If those are close to your feelings on the matter, you have a plenty of people to hang out with who agree and give support, and some of those people are running large campaigns to help you with your beliefs. What we don't hear about, and again -- because of great effort -- is the huge budgets recently approved for larger more effective PSYOP Corps in the military. In the last eight years the budgets have nearly tripled. To be fare they weren't given much of a funding raise in the last twenty, so the word 'tripled' sounds more dramatic than it really is. But, we are talking about a figure in the area of $4.7 Billion  (one of the budget reports, others are easy to find) Fort Brag alone has $24 million earmarked 2014  for a new home for Army Civil Affairs & Psychological Operations Command
An Associated Press investigation found that over the past five years, the money the military spends on winning hearts and minds at home and abroad has grown by 63 percent, to at least $4.7 billion this year, according to Department of Defense budgets and other documents. That's almost as much as it spent on body armor for troops in Iraq and Afghanistan between 2004 and 2006.

This year, the Pentagon will employ 27,000 people just for recruitment, advertising and public relations -- almost as many as the total 30,000-person work force in the State Department.

"We have such a massive apparatus selling the military to us, it has become hard to ask questions about whether this is too much money or if it's bloated," says Sheldon Rampton, research director for the Committee on Media and Democracy, which tracks the military's media operations. "As the war has become less popular, they have felt they need to respond to that more."
In 2008 the Military (Army) rewrote many of their PSYOP manuals and classified them as Military use only. I happen to get a hold of several of them which were leaked out on the Internet.  Considering what they had prior to these new manuals, my thinking as I read through the changes  was "It's about damn time." Definitely money well spent -- though not up to speed with what is being used currently across the globe. It use to be the high mark  was when you referred to something as "Military Grade", in the areas of propaganda, that is currently "Corporate Grade"
"Propaganda becomes ineffective the moment we are aware of it"
--Joseph Goebbels (1897-1945)

"If consumers are aware that they are being propagandized, the choice to accept or reject the message is theirs alone."
--Jowett & O'Donnell, p154
Jowett and O'Donnell are mistaken -- as we'll talk about in a moment and discover that your choice to accept is not your choice to make with several current and common tactics.

Unfortunately Mr. Joseph Goebbels is mistaken as well, though it's not his fault. Mr. Goebbels is utilizing the best information available during his time. The best resources for method and application  of his time (besides himself) were Edward Bernays and Adolf Hitler. He worked for Hitler, and obviously had Bernays' book Propaganda. It was a lack of science knowledge of the day which is the liar of that time -- and thank god because they would have put far more effort into their mission if they knew the things we know now. In fact it wasn't until the 1990s that we had the tech to realized that his statement wasn't true.
Context is everything, so control it, and you control what facts and quotes mean

Today we know that our brains are not like spreadsheets. On learning a particular fact or belief is false, misleading or distorted, we can't simply delete the cell that the information is in, and replace it with "real" information. That's just not the way things work. Even after learning a fact is false, it remains influential in our decision making. Not as strongly influential but enough to matter.
The term misinformation, should not be confused with disinformation. The difference between the two is basically the intention of the source we acquired the facts from. With Misinformation the source was attempting to give us correct information -- but either because they were not aware their information was false or inaccurate or because of a problem with communication, our information is wrong. Disinformation is intentionally promoting error..

The label ‘misinformation’ refers to any information that people have acquired that turns out to be incorrect -- regardless of source -- so not just misinformation from a Propaganda source. We are concerned with the cognitive processes that govern how people process corrections to information they have already acquired—if you find out that something you believe is wrong, how do you update your knowledge and memory?

Once people receive misinformation, it’s exceptionally difficult to remove its influence. This was demonstrated in a 1994 experiment where people were exposed to misinformation in the context of a NEWS story about a fictitious warehouse fire, then given a correction clarifying that some of the information in the story was incorrect, and providing them with the correct information (Johnson & Seifert, 1994).

Despite remembering and accepting the corrections, many of the people in the study continued to demonstrate lingering effects, referring to the misinformation when answering questions about the story. This is more than a little disconcerting and since that study hundreds of studies have been performed redressing the effects of misinformation, comprehension, and false memory.
Happiest Place
 On Earth

This Link will search Google Scholar for Academic studies and papers published since 2011, and as PDFs. As PDF documents, it is likely the full paper is available for no cost. As you will see the mind is affected by false memories from a number of sources, such as lack of O2 to the brain, fluttered heart beat, other biological effects -- as well as social, psychological and economic pressures. Within these are commonalities, where methods are employed, such as the Information Needle,  methods far more effective, and much longer lasting than anyone would be  comfortable with -- in my opinion. I suppose there must be someone out there who prefers to have their information customized. 

Is it possible to completely eliminate the influence of misinformation?

The evidence indicates that no matter how vigorously and repeatedly we counter the misinformation, for example by repeating the correction over and over again, the influence remains detectable (Ecker, Lewandowsky, Swire, & Chang, 2011).

Our minds, by default, operated on the assumption that any new information is true(Holland, 2008). To alter the status of new information, it must be challenged (which is what makes the method known as Implied Facts so effective.If a fact is only Implied, and not directly given to you, then the source of the fact is "yourself" and that gives strong weight in your mind as to the legitimacy of source and therefore the information. We do not question or even feel the urge to doubt implied information.

When 'transported' by stories or plays or movies, we feel no skepticism at, say, Spider-Man's webbing his way among the skyscrapers. Following Coleridge, we have called this phenomenon, the 'willing suspension of disbelief'. Psychological experiments show, however, that during our experience of any narrative, we do not suspend disbelief. We believe, and then we partly disbelieve. Our brains link reality-testing to action and the possibility of action to change what we are perceiving. If we cannot change it, our brains need not test its reality, and they don't. When responding to works of art, Kant and other aestheticians point out, we are 'disinterested'. We know that we cannot or will not act to change artworks. We therefore accept such unrealities as Spider-Man. In situations where we must act (hypertext) or can act (watching DVDs), we may not experience the same lack of skepticism.
Spider-Man? Sure! The neuroscience of suspending disbelief, Norman N. Holland DOI:
There is also a method known as the Information Needle, which effectively injects you with false memories. Meaning that you didn't learn from the article that in 1999 an event occurred, you Remember that the event occurred and so you agree with that point in the article. The false memory is quite real to you, and very clear.

False memory refers to possessing definite memories of a circumstance that did not happen (Brainerd & Reyna, 2005). Fuzzy-trace theory (Brainerd & Reyna, 1998) identifies factors that govern the accessibility of verbatim and gist structures in memory and their association with false memories. Verbatim traces contain surface details, which are held for short periods whereas gist traces contain memory of meaning and are held longer. This method relies strongly on the control of emotion and mood(Storbeck & Clore, 2005).

What is Propaganda?

Walt Disney's
Propaganda Posters

It was widely reported (early May 2011) that Facebook had hired a PR firm to anonymously circulate claims about Google. Investigation by two USA Today reporters found some of the claims true and some false. The agency, Burson-Marsteller, planted phony stories about a Google social networking plan. This incident is a current example of black propaganda.

Propaganda, in the most neutral sense, means to disseminate or promote particular ideas. In Latin, it means “to propagate” or “to sow.” In 1622, the Vatican established the Sacra Congregatio de Propaganda Fide, meaning the sacred congregation for propagating the faith of the Roman Catholic Church. Because the propaganda of the Roman Catholic Church had as its intent spreading the faith to the New World, as well as opposing Protestantism, the word propaganda lost its neutrality, and subsequent usage has rendered the term pejorative. To identify a message as propaganda is to suggest something negative and dishonest. Words frequently used as synonyms for propaganda are lies, distortion, deceit, manipulation, mind control, psychological warfare, brainwashing, and palaver.

Terms implying propaganda that have gained popularity today are spin and news management, referring to a coordinated strategy to minimize negative information and present in a favorable light a story that could be damaging to self-interests.

Spin is often used with reference to the manipulation of political information; therefore, press secretaries and public relations officers are referred to as “spin doctors” when they attempt to launder the news (Kurtz, 1998). Besides being associated with unethical, harmful, and unfair tactics, propaganda is also commonly defined as “organized  persuasion” (DeVito, 1986, p. 239). 

Persuasion differs from propaganda, as we will see later, but the term is often used as a catch-all for suspicious rhetoric. Sproule (1994) references propaganda as organized mass persuasion with covert intent and poor or nonexistent reasoning:
 “Propaganda represents the work of large organizations or groups to win over the public for special interests through a massive orchestration of attractive conclusions packaged to conceal both their persuasive purpose and lack of sound supporting reasons
In the 1980s, and as far as the late 1990s Propaganda was generally thought of as a message which attempts to alter public perceptions and/or induce action. It serves some specific agenda. Propaganda can appear in any form or medium and may or may not be obvious as propaganda. Its actual source may not be obvious. Not all propaganda is evil - some serves reasonable purposes, like promoting action on public health issues.

According to Lasswell (1927)
 "It refers solely to the control of opinion by significant symbols, or, to speak more concretely and less accurately, by stories, rumors, reports, pictures, and other forms of social communication. Propaganda is concerned with the management of opinions and attitudes by the direct manipulation of social suggestion rather than by altering other conditions in the environment or in the organism."
Jowett & O'Donnell's definition seems to be quite complete, they are analysts of our new centuries versions and usages:
"Propaganda is the deliberate, systematic attempt to shape perceptions, manipulate cognition, and direct behavior to achieve a response that furthers the desired intent of the propagandist.
The Latest Military definition is even more complete.
Psychological operations (PSYOP) are planned operations to convey selected information and indicators to audiences to influence their emotions, motives, objective reasoning, and ultimately the behavior of governments, organizations, groups, and individuals.

Only the most dedicated skepticism and critical thinking can prevent today's propaganda from injecting false and distorted views into your usage memory as reliable information safe to base decisions on. Learn to detect propaganda or to at least be aware of the methods is a wise idea, but not a complete safeguard. The skilled professionals who use the methods of modern propaganda are difficult to discover. Today's Propaganda is not your Grandfather's breed, and his was fairly venomous -- it is not commonly discussed in the United States just how effective it is, or why.those campaigns during your Grandfather's day became so essential to the military efforts then and in every military engagement since.

Advertising is a form of propaganda; it is trying to influence you to purchase something. All kinds of images and symbols might be used, Extensive research has been done in trying to understand just how to influence the audience. Over the years, advertising has developed a reputation for being misleading, distorting and deceptive. Realization of this has produced skeptical consumers. Not all advertising is effective. Jowett and O'Donnell list one of the possible reasons for this as "...there might just be plain old skepticism, for after all, advertising has a long history of being deceptive or distorting."(p154) They also claim that Advertising is also the largest source of propaganda today. If by source, they mean the funding behind developing better tactical methods of aggressive persuasion, they could be right, but Advertisment is not Propaganda no matter how similar the two look.

The true difference between Advertising (Marketing) and Propaganda, is that Marketing Campaigns (methods, tactics) will always have a call to action. It is crucial to any form of sales technique to give a call to action, to urge the prospect to act. 

Act Now! 
On Sale for Only Six More Days! 
Don't Miss this
  ONCE in a LIFETIME offer. 
Your Kids will Love you for YEARS to Come. 
Now with 


Propaganda does not utilize any form of a call to action, quite the opposite. In fact the tactic destroys the effectiveness of propaganda as soon as it is employed. It surprised me that Jowett and O'Donnell didn't realize that the use of the Call To Action was what hindered the results of a Marketing campaigns using propaganda techniques in their study, but they certainly weren't the first, nor the last to over look an obvious detail.

Propaganda -- the whole purpose and goal -- is to present itself as  an  authoritative  source of information which is obviously correct, or correct because it is obvious to everyone. Imagine a NEWS feature which ended with, "So act NOW, Let the World know that YOU Believe!" How many Red Flags would that throw up in your face?

Consider the possibilities of the Internet. ISIS has and they're demonstrated effectiveness on Twitter, Facebook and other social networks, especially with teens, has been alarming.  You can find almost anything you want out there. The net is filled with "information(tm)" sources, some providing reliable information and data that you can safely use, while others dispense opinion, half-truths, distortions and outright falsehoods. Conspiracy theories thrive and spread via the Internet. Who has the responsibility of sorting this out?


Properties of Propaganda

From all the principles we have seen, we can distill an outline of the properties of propaganda.
  • It will appeal to the emotions and avoid abstractions.
  • It must be as simple as possible so everyone can understand it.
  • The message may be reduced to a slogan.
  • It will be constantly repeated.(not the slogan, but the message in various ways)
  • It will use stereotyped phrasing.
  • It will give only one side of the story (you may have to dig to find out the other side).
  • It will point out a "villain" to attack.-- this is a curicial part of every tactical message
  • It will incessantly criticize and attack its opponents.
  • It will use distinctive phrases or slogans to label people or events.

Whether something in the propaganda item is true or false is not important, as long as it is believed and the method works. Most propaganda professionals hold to the "truth" as close as they can, and the best of them never leave the truth at all. The "Truths" which argue against their goal message, are simply not presented, or are presented in a minimalist fashiom.

The propaganda will evoke emotional responses from the people's own backgrounds. News of course is not suppose to use emotional appeals, nor to offer a 'correct' perspective.

Cultural symbols will be used to obtain the emotional responses. Such symbols may be verbal or visual. Posters make great use of symbols. Framing is often used on websites to provide support for the articles use of emotion.

If you examine a message and find these properties in it, you can be certain that it's propaganda. The article or blog post or Tweet won't require all of these points, but 4-5 will be enough to be certain One or two points only, it's likely not propaganda. Again, the methods of persuasion have been around for a long time, and people use them with zero knowledge of their history, or even that it is a tactic derived from propaganda techniques.

Getting in the habit of questioning facts however can only help you and your kids enjoy the Internet and other social encounters, and make both safer --  question and find a reliable sources or primary documents to back up the claims.

US Army Description of PSYOPS 

PSYOPS or Psychological OperationsPlanned operations to convey selected information and indicators to foreign audiences to influence their emotions, motives, objective reasoning, and ultimately the behavior of foreign governments, organizations, groups, and individuals. The purpose of psychological operations is to induce or reinforce foreign attitudes and behavior favorable to the originator's objectives. Also called PSYOP. See also consolidation psychological operations; overt peacetime psychological operations programs; perception management. (Source: U.S. Department of Defense)

Psychological Operations are a vital part of the broad range of U.S. political, military, economic, and ideological activities used by the U.S. government to secure national objectives. PSYOP is the dissemination of truthful information to foreign audiences in support of U.S. policy and national objectives. 

Used during peacetime, contingencies, and declared war, these activities are not a form of force, but are force multipliers that use nonviolent means in often violent environments. Persuading rather than compelling physically, they rely on logic, fear, desire or other mental factors to promote specific emotions, attitudes or behaviors. The ultimate objective of U.S. military psychological operations is to convince enemy, neutral, and friendly nations and forces to take action favorable to the United States and its allies. 

Psychological operations support national security objectives at the tactical, operational and strategic levels of operations. 

Strategic psychological operations advance broad or long-term objectives. Global in nature, they may be directed toward large audiences or at key communicators. 

Operational psychological operations are conducted on a smaller scale. They are employed by theater commanders to target groups within the theater of operations. Their purpose can range from gaining support for U.S. operations to preparing the battlefield for combat. 

Tactical psychological operations are more limited, used by commanders to secure immediate and near-term goals. In this environment, these force-enhancing activities serve as a means to lower the morale and efficiency of enemy forces. 

Both tactical and theater-level psychological operations may be used to enhance peacetime military activities of conventional and special operations forces operating in foreign countries. Cultural awareness packages attune U.S. forces before departing overseas. In theater, media programs publicize the positive aspects of combined military exercises and deployments. 

In addition to supporting commanders, psychological operations provide interagency support to other U.S. government agencies. In operations ranging from humanitarian assistance to drug interdiction, psychological operations enhance the impact of actions taken by those agencies. Their activities can be used to spread information about ongoing programs and to gain support from the local populace. 

Psychological operations units of the U.S. Army are language and culturally oriented. The 4th Psychological Operations Group (Airborne) at Fort Bragg, N.C., the only active Army psychological operations unit, constitutes 26 percent of all U.S. Army psychological operations units. The remaining 74 percent, split between the 2nd and 7th Psychological Operations Groups, are in the Army Reserve. 
(Source: U.S. Army Special Operations Command)

Current Recruiting Page for the US ARMY

Pentagon sets up panel to study electronic 
warfare requirements
May - 2015 --- The U.S. Defense Department on Tuesday set up a new panel to address shortfalls in U.S. electronic warfare capabilities across the U.S. military and to ensure the United States retains its competitive edge.

Deputy Defense Secretary Robert Work signed a memo creating a new "Electronic Warfare Executive Committee" to be chaired by Pentagon acquisition chief Frank Kendall and Admiral James Winnefeld, vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

Work told a conference hosted by McAleese & Associates and Credit Suisse that the United States still had greater capabilities in the electromagnetic spectrum than potential adversaries, but other countries were investing heavily.

"We still have a lead, but I think that lead is diminishing rapidly," Work told the conference.

In the memo, Work said he created the panel after the Defense Science Board found the Pentagon had "lost focus on electronic warfare at the programmatic and strategic level."

He said the committee would oversee and coordinate electronic warfare programs, strategy and acquisition, while balancing budget and capability needs.

The move could spell good news for Boeing Co, which builds electronic attack jets for the Navy, but may open opportunities for other companies that work in the sector, including Raytheon Co and Northrop Grumman Corp as well as Britain's BAE Systems Plc.

Kendall told reporters the committee's work would have some impact on the Pentagon budget process, but it was unlikely to get the full $2 billion in extra funding for electronic warfare equipment recommended by the science board last year.

He said he did not favor designating one service to manage all electronic warfare needs for the entire military since each of the services had its own needs and capabilities.

The Navy is nearing the end of a separate study of electronic warfare requirements across the military services. A top admiral last week said the study would probably point to the need for more Boeing EA-18G electronic attack jets, but Boeing needed orders in fiscal 2016 to preserve the option of building more EA-18Gs in coming years.

Kendall said he was more concerned about getting to a next-generation capability than extending the Boeing production line to maintain the option of buying more Growlers.

$7.2b in US Army PSYOP Intelligence Support Contracts, 2014-2019

Sept--2014 Army Intelligence and Security Command at Fort Belvoir, VA issues up to $7.2 billion worth of indefinite-delivery/ indefinite-quantity contracts for global intelligence PSYOP support services. Each contractor will compete for task orders, and receive a minimum guarantee of just $5,000. Funding and work location will be determined with each order, and will run from Sept 11/14 to Sept 11/19.
There were 2 categories of winners: larger firms, and small business set-asides…
For the larger firms, the total contract that could be bid as task orders is $5.04 billion. Bids were solicited via the Internet, with 17 received and 11 winners:
  • BAE Systems Information Solutions, Inc. in McLean, VA (W91W4-14-D-0001)
  • Booz Allen Hamilton, Inc. in McLean, VA (W911W4-14-D-0002)
  • CACI Technologies, Inc. in Manassas, VA (W911(W4-14-D-0003)
  • DynCorp International LLC in McLean, VA (W911W4-14-D-0004)
  • Invertix Corp. in McLean, VA (W911W4-14-D-0005)
  • Lockheed Martin Integrated Systems, Inc., Bethesda, Maryland (W911W4-14-D-0006)
  • ManTech Mission, Cyber and Technology Solutions Inc. in Falls Church, VA (W911W4-14-D-0007)
  • Northrop Grumman Cyber Solutions Division Inc. in Chantilly, VA (W911W4-14-D-0008)
  • Six3 Intelligence Solutions Inc. in McLean, VA (W911W4-14-D-0009)
  • Sotera Defense Solutions, Inc. in Herndon, VA (W911W4-14-D-0010)
  • SRA International Inc. in Fairfax, VA (W911W4-14-D-0011)
A second set of contracts involved small business set-asides, under a $2.16 billion total contract with the same terms. 20 bids were submitted, and the 10 winners included:
  • Absolute Business Corp. in Herndon, VA (W911W4-14-D-0012)
  • Archimedes Global in Wesley Chapel, FL (W911W4-14-D-0013)
  • Calhoun International in LLC in Tampa, FL (W911W4-14-D-0014)
  • Circinus, LLC in Fredericksburg, VA (W911W4-14-D-0015)
  • Charles F. Day & Associates in Stafford, VA (W911W4-14-D-0016)
  • E&M Technologies, Inc. in Laurel, MD (W911W4-14-D-0017)
  • Integral Consulting Services in Gaithersburg, MD (W911W4-14-D-0018)
  • K-3 Enterprises, Inc. in Fayetteville, NC (W911W4-14-D-0019)
  • Pluribus International Corp. in Alexandria, VA (W911W4-14-D-0020)
  • The Buffalo Group in Reston, VA (W911W4-14-D-0021)
Categories: BAEConsulting FirmsContracts - AwardsIntelligence & PsyOps


----Original Message-----
From: Brooks, Rosa CIV OSD POLICY
Sent: Monday, June 28, 2010 4:11 PM
Subject: Yes, "PSYOP" is changing to "MISO"


USDP sought clarification from SecDef and reports that he is comfortable
with a complete PSYOP name change, from PSYOP to Military Information
Support Operations ("MISO" - sounds like a soup, but what can you do? I
guess we could also keep saying MIS).  

ADM Olson and GEN Casey's emails and related message traffic have
already leaked out, so now that we have clarity on SD's views, we will
need to move quickly to inform key Congressional and interagency
players, and respond to media queries with this information. (Walter
Pincus from Wash Post as already queried us).  My hope is that this will
not be a big deal, but given the sensitivities around PYSOP and the
PSYOP budget, you never know.  

Key points to make if asked:  This is just a terminological change, not
a substantive change. The term PSYOP was anachronistic and misleading;
Military Information Support is a more accurate description of the
activities and programs at issue. We already use the term "Military
Information Support Teams" to describe the PSYOP personnel who deploy to
embassies and provide support to State Dept public diplomacy efforts;
this more thoroughgoing terminological shift will make our terminology
consistent and help reduce misunderstandings.
If this generates enough Hill or press interest, we may want to pull
together a one-pager from existing congressional reports to explain what
kinds of activities we are talking about.
Meanwhile, we will work with OGC & Leg Affairs to determine whether
formal congressional notification/legislative change is needed to make
this... officially official.
Rosa Brooks
Senior Advisor to the Undersecretary of Defense for Policy &
Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Rule of Law & International
Humanitarian Policy