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In 1994, a former fighter pilot with the Institute for Defense Analysis named Rex Rivolo started looking at DEA statistics that were supposed to show that this approach was fixing the drug problem.
It wasn't. In fact the node-centric targeting approach had the opposite effect, since when the "big cartels disappeared, the business reverted to smaller and even more ruthless groups that managed to maintain production and distribution quite satisfactorily, especially as they were closely linked either to Colombia's Marxist FARC guerrillas or to the fascist anti-guerrilla paramilitary groups allied with the government and tacitly supported by the United States." By 2007 Rivolo was working in an intelligence cell in Baghdad, evaluating the effectiveness of targeting so-called "High Value Individuals" (HVIs). His findings then were just as stark: violence went up after an HVI was taken out. After the successful targeting of an HVI, Rivolo found that "within three kilometers of the target's base of operation, attacks over the following 30 days shot up by 40%.
On June 23, 2009, Arthur Rivolo, the principal MV-22 analyst for the Institute of Defense Analyses, testified to the House of Representatives Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.
Rivolo got right to the point: "This much awaited, transformative aircraft has, in my opinion, turned out to be a disappointment, falling well short of its design goals."
"Combat assault, the mission for which the V-22 was designed, remains unproven under realistic conditions," said Rex Rivolo, a former analyst for the Institute for Defense Analyses, a nonprofit that manages three federally-funded research and development centers.
"As an airplane it's quite safe," Arthur Rex Rivolo, an expert on rotorcraft who runs an aerospace corporation in Virginia of the US, said in recent email interviews with Asia Times Online.
"But its helicopter role is always very precarious. The shortcomings of the V-22 have to do with the design of the aircraft. The biggest concern over the aircraft is that it has smaller rotors. As a helicopter, that is working very hard to stay in the air." Rivolo served as the principal analyst for the MV-22 and CV-22 at the Institute for Defense Analyses (IDA), a nonprofit organization paid to do independent research for the Pentagon, from June 1992 to March 2009. He was a pilot fir six years at the US Air Force and 22 years at the Air National Guard. He testified before the House of Representatives in June 2009 on the inability of the MV-22 Osprey to safely autorotate - that is, to conduct an emergency power-off landing by rotating its propellers with the help of the wind, even after all engines become inoperative. "The aircraft is unable to autorotate," Rivolo said. Rivolo pointed out the chances of the Osprey's two engines failing in peacetime are very rare, "but if both engines fail, that would be a very serious problem of the V-22. "The Morocco accident is the classic of [the] V-22," Rivolo said.
For once there was a rigorous study of what had been achieved, which was carried out by Rex Rivolo, who worked for the Institute for Defense Analysis, the Pentagon's think tank.
Visiting frontline military units with Colonel Jim Hickey, who had led the final, successful, hunt for Saddam Hussein, Rivolo asked about the effect of killing high value individuals (HVIs) on the number of IEDs being used against US troops. Rivolo conducted a study on 200 cases where high value targets had been killed or captured between June and October 2007. He looked at the neighbourhood of the local leader who had been eliminated, in order to see if the number of IEDs had gone up or down in the 30 days after his death or arrest.