We consider a model for elastic scattering and inelastic diffractive production at high energy, which is inspired by Quantum Chromodynamics. The pomeron arises in our model from gluon exchange between quark constituents. The color-neutrality of each hadron implies strong cancellations among the gluon exchanges. Hence our model is “subtractive”, in contrast to the old “additive” quark model. The subtractive model provides a natural explanation for the large cross section which is observed for diffractive dissociation. We show that multiple gluon exchange contributes significantly, alongside two gluon exchange, in building the pomeron.