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The DoD Non-Lethal Weapons Program develops and fields Intermediate Force Capabilities between presence and lethal effects in support of the Joint Force.

Transform the National Security Enterprise by mainstreaming the planning and employment of Intermediate Force Capabilities to arm the Joint Force with the fullest range of capabilities in support of National Security objectives.


The Department of Defense Non-Lethal Weapons Program stimulates and coordinates non-lethal weapons requirements of the U.S. Armed Services and allocates resources to help meet these requirements. The Commandant of the Marine Corps serves as the Department of Defense Non-Lethal Weapons Executive Agent.

Located at Marine Corps Base Quantico, Va., the Joint Intermediate Force Capabilities Office serves as the Department of Defense Non-Lethal Weapons Program Executive Agent's day-to-day management office.

The U.S. Armed Services work with the combatant commanders and the executive agent through a joint process to identify requirements and coordinate the planning, programming and funding of non-lethal weapons research, development and acquisition. Within the Department of Defense Non-Lethal Weapons Program, the Joint Intermediate Force Capabilities Office and the Services fund science and technology, research and development, as well as test and evaluation for non-lethal weapons.

Recent Articles

May 5, 2023


United States military doctrine has long recognized the strategic importance of mitigating civilian harm during armed conflict. Different conflict types, however, implicate different strategic considerations. Likewise, different conflicts require different operational approaches.

May 3, 2023



April 27, 2023

26th Marine Expeditionary Unit conducts NEO training amidst Sudan evacuation

For five days, a U.S. consulate in the small, fictitious country of “Obsidian” had been surrounded by protestors upset with the American presence in their coastal nation within the “Treasure Coast” region. Over the course of those few days violence increased and the regional situation continued to deteriorate.

April 18, 2023

American Deterrence Is Failing

There is a problem with deterrence; it’s not working. Not that we are about to descend into nuclear armageddon. But aside from nuclear wars, the United States’ deterrence paradigm does not seem to be deterring much recently. Our adversaries—principally Russia and China—do not seem cowed, either by the risk of failure to achieve their objectives or by the fear of retaliation. Both have been seizing the initiative with aggressive behavior ranging from information warfare, through the full range of gray zone tactics, all the way to the illegal military invasion and occupation of a sovereign neighboring state. Either the theory of deterrence is wrong, or the West is doing deterrence wrong.

April 18, 2023

Pentagon taps official to oversee civilian protection in war zones

The Pentagon named a researcher from a nonprofit to establish and lead a center devoted to civilian protection and harm mitigation, in the wake of reports from previous years that looked at inadvertent civilian casualties resulting from U.S. strikes. Michael McNerney was tapped by the Pentagon to lead the Civilian Protection Center of Excellence. He previously served as a senior international and defense researcher at the Rand Corporation, where he published research on civilian protections, according to a Pentagon statement.

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