Last year's NATO action to remove Serbian forces from Kosovo was a milestone for military operations, but technology was still not always a match for human ingenuity, a conference held alongside Asian Aerospace heard.

Gen Jean Rannou, chief of staff of the French air force was speaking at the Millennium Air Power Conference.

He said the conflict marked the first occasion that a significant armed force had been defeated without really having been in contact with its opponent, a situation which would "change military strategy drastically".

It achieved that result with what Gen Rannou described as "a very moderate use of strikes".

He noted that at the start of the operation, the decision cycle within NATO was around 72h, due to the slowness of battle damage assessments. After a few weeks, dominance in the field of information brought the cycle down to less than 12h. The Serbs, however, moved their surface-to-air missiles every 6h, which kept them one step ahead of the allied strikes.

Source: Flight Daily News