Former general Stanley McChrystal held a key position for much of the War on Terror, as head of the Joint Special Operations Command. In Iraq he found that despite the vastly superior resources, manpower, and training of the US military, Al Qaeda had an advantage because of its structure as a loose network of small, independent cells. Those cells wreaked havoc by always staying one step ahead, sharing knowledge with each other via high-tech communications.
When General Stanley McChrystal took command of the Joint Special Operations Task Force in Iraq in 2003, he quickly realized that conventional military tactics were failing. The allied forces had a huge advantage in numbers, equipment and training - but none of the enemy's speed and flexibility. McChrystal and his colleagues discarded a century of conventional wisdom to create a 'team of teams' that combined extremely transparent communication with decentralised decision-making authority.