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AFP Intelligence Community’s Strategic Risk Management Process in Response to External

Roden R. Orbon, MBA, MPA
Philippine Christian University
Manila, Philippines



In the ever-changing global security landscape, characterized by volatility, uncertainty, complexity, and ambiguity (VUCA), this study serves as a capstone project to provide valuable insights to the AFP Intelligence Community (AFPIC). Its primary focus is to effectively tackle the exceptional non-military security threats a foreign adversary poses. China’s rapid and significant ascent as an Asian hegemon and a global superpower has driven its pursuit of resources and influence worldwide. These hegemonic actions have not only elicited resentment from smaller and weaker nations adversely affected by them but also drawn the ire of the United States and its allies. The Philippines, strategically located in the South China Sea and the Pacific region, has become a prime target of China’s unconventional warfare strategy, where they seek to subdue their adversaries without resorting to kinetic force. China’s United Front Works (UFW) strategy is a crucial element of its hybrid warfare approach, providing a platform for intelligence, influence, and interference operations designed to systematically undermine its enemies. This study aims to describe the current state of the AFPIC’s risk management capabilities in terms of doctrines, organization, and training concerning the security threats posed by China’s UFW. It also seeks to identify the challenges in these areas and propose appropriate solutions to address them. Overall, the objective of this study is to contribute to the long-term endeavor of enhancing the AFPIC’s doctrines, organization, and training to effectively address the threats posed by China’s UFW and other hybrid security threats. The qualitative data gathered through document analysis, key informant interviews, and focused group discussions involving multiple participants from various units and offices within the AFPIC and the AFP Triad, as well as education and doctrine development circles, underwent an iterative and hybrid process of thematic and content analysis. Tools such as SWOT, TOWS, and the causal-impact analytical tool were utilized during this analytical process. The results of this analysis provided valuable insights into the current state of AFPIC’s risk management capability in terms of doctrine, organization, and training, highlighting both the advantages and disadvantages within these areas. Further exploration revealed the primary challenges present in these three domains, which encompassed internal and external dynamics that hindered the optimal implementation of related initiatives. Subsequently, numerous recommendations were formulated to enhance the AFPIC’s doctrine, organization, and training capabilities in response to the exceptional security threats posed by China’s united front works. Central to the research findings were three crucial factors that influenced the success or failure of the doctrinal, organizational, and training endeavors: the support of advocates and champions, the role of knowledge management, and the significance of engaging foreign stakeholders.

Keywords: Armed Forces of the Philippines, Intelligence, Risk Management, United Front Works, National Security, hybrid security threats, unconventional warfare, political warfare

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