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Appendix C



FM 6-99 (101-5)
Place of issue
Date, time, and time zone
Message Ref. no.
References:     Maps, charts, or other documents.
Time zone used throughout the estimate:


This paragraph lists the command's restated mission from a public affairs perspective.


The paragraph describes the strategic and operational media environment in which the operation is being conducted and identifies the critical factors that might impact on the command's mission -- the "action and reaction" within global media channels. It identifies the media environment across the operational continuum, describing it from "austere" for low media interest and capability in a limited AOR communication infrastructure to "dynamic" for high media interest and capability in a high-tech AOR infrastructure. At a minimum, this paragraph must include:

  1. Information environment. This paragraph describes the characteristics of the operation and the information environment in the area of operations. It identifies any activities or issues affecting the over-all mission and the command's public affairs objectives.

  2. Media presence. An assessment of the news media presence in the theater of operations prior to deployment and the likely presence of additional news media during the conduct of operations. This assessment should address the authority under which media representatives are operating and the degree of control that can be imposed on their efforts.

  3. Media capabilities. An assessment of the media's information collection and communication technology, specifically identifying their level of visual information acquisition and satellite communication capabilities. It includes an analysis of the logistics support, transportation assets, and host-nation communications infrastructure available to them.

  4. Media content. An assessment of the global media's presentation of information and their agendas, and an analysis and prioritization of the potential strategic and operational issues confronting the command in the news media. This media content analysis will provide an evaluation of the quantity of coverage and the nature of that coverage.

  5. Public opinion. Assessment of national and international attitude about the operation and command, leaders, and soldiers conducting it. This paragraph should include both the perceptions held by major audience groups and the relative solidity or strength of those attitudes. A public opinion analysis should include as a minimum an analysis of the following groups:

    • American public
    • Civilian political leaders
    • Coalition and allied forces and their publics
    • International audience
    • Internal command audience
    • Home station public

  6. Information channel availability. An assessment of the information channels available for the communication of information in and out of the AOR. It identifies the means available to the commander for receipt, transmission, and dissemination of voice, data, text, graphics, and digital visual imaging. It describes command, coalition, and local national facilities and equipment available, to include an analysis of available telephone lines for voice and data transmission, the accessibility of audio and video channels, the prevalence of private communications devices such as soldier-owned cellular telephones, facsimile machines, computers, portable radios and televisions, still and video cameras, and the nature and flow of the information possible through these channels.

  7. Information needs. This is an assessment of the information needs of the previously identified key publics. It analyzes key internal and external audiences and assesses theirs news and information expectations. It identifies the types of information made available to these key audiences.

  8. Personnel situation. Describes the present dispositions of public affairs personnel and units that affect the PA mission, and the assets needed and available. State known personnel problems, if any, that may affect the PA situation. Consult the personnel estimate for details. (Examples of personnel include shortages of PA NCOs and skilled operators for equipment.)

  9. Public Affairs situation. This summarizes current PA objectives and identifies specific courses of action for each objective. At high levels of command, detail information in a summary with a reference to an annex to the estimate. Subparagraphs will include all current (PAG) from OSD (PA).

  10. Logistical situation. State known logistic problems, if any that may affect the PA situation. See logistic estimate for details. (Examples of logistic problems include the lack of transportation and adequate facilities.)

  11. Assumptions. Until specific planning guidance from the commander becomes available, you may need assumptions for initiating planning or preparing the estimate. Modify these assumptions as factual data or planning guidance becomes available.


Analyze each course of action based on the public affairs objectives in paragraph 2i. Indicate problems and deficiencies. At a minimum, subparagraphs should include media facilitation and support, news and information provision, and force training and support.

Analyze each COA from a PA point of view to determine its advantages and disadvantages for conducting PA. The detail in which the analysis is made is determined by the level of command, scope of operations, and of urgency of need.


Compare each course of action. List advantages and disadvantages of each course of action under consideration. Include methods of overcoming deficiencies or modification required for each course of action.


  1. Indicate whether you can support the command mission (restated in paragraph from the public affairs viewpoint.

  2. Indicate which COAs you can best support.

  3. List major public affairs deficiencies, which commander must consider. Include specific recommendations about methods of eliminating or reducing their effects.


(Public Affairs Officer)
ANNEXES: (As required)


(NOTE: The headings listed in this assessment are for example only. Use headings appropriate to your command's operations.)


PA Operations Estimate

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