Op-Eds

 
  •  Grunts and Jarheads: Rethinking the Army-Marine Division of Labor

    Grunts and Jarheads: Rethinking the Army-Marine Division of Labor

    Grunts and Jarheads: Rethinking the Army-Marine Division of Labor Dr Steven Metz Op-Ed by the US Army War College, Strategic Studies Institute "Debate rages today about the future of America’s ground forces. Gone are the days when serious strategists could suggest that that utility of landpower was receding. Now no one questions its importance. But there is disagreement on the type and number of ground forces that the nation needs. "
    • Published On: 9/1/2007
  •  Can Tony Blair Make a Difference in the Middle East?

    Can Tony Blair Make a Difference in the Middle East?

    Can Tony Blair Make a Difference in the Middle East? Dr W Andrew Terrill Op-Ed by the US Army War College, Strategic Studies Institute "As the entire world now knows, former British Prime Minister Tony Blair has decided not to slip into comfortable retirement. Instead, after 10 years of service as the leader of the United Kingdom, he has sought out one the world’s most thankless jobs at one of the worst possible times to accept it. He has arranged to be appointed special envoy of the Middle East Peace Quartet. The Quartet includes the European Union, Russia, the United Nations, and the United States..."
    • Published On: 8/1/2007
  •  Knowing when to Salute

    Knowing when to Salute

    Knowing when to Salute Prof Douglas C Lovelace Jr, Dr Leonard Wong Op-Ed by the US Army War College, Strategic Studies Institute "The other morning, about 100 colonels and a handful of civilians assembled for our annual Army War College staff and faculty photo. We were arranged on the outdoor steps of one of the many historic buildings on post and faced the flagpole which dominates the entire campus. Unlike other Army posts, the flag at the Army War College is illuminated day and night and flown continuously—eliminating the need for junior soldiers (who are rare at the Army War College) to raise and lower the flag during daily reveille and retreat ceremonies..."
    • Published On: 6/1/2007
  •  Treating Allies as Allies in the Arab World

    Treating Allies as Allies in the Arab World

    Treating Allies as Allies in the Arab World Dr W Andrew Terrill Op-Ed by the US Army War College, Strategic Studies Institute "At this crucial junction in time, there are serious, evolving, and seemingly nonstop challenges involving the potential spread of violent upheaval and terrorism in the Middle East and particularly the Gulf region. To address these difficulties, the United States will need to work with friendly Arab nations that can help us meet those challenges with united strength. Unfortunately, the importance of our alliances with regional Arab powers is not always fully appreciated by our own strategic thinkers. Questions correspondingly emerge as to whether we are doing enough to understand allied concerns and find ways in which we can work together to address the terrorism threat."
    • Published On: 6/1/2007
  •  Manning the Force

    Manning the Force

    Treating Allies as Allies in the Arab World Dr. Douglas V. Johnson II Op-Ed by the US Army War College, Strategic Studies Institute "OK, so the Total Force is being expanded. What will that expansion look like? Colonel (Ret.) John Bonin of the U.S. Army War College argues that restricting the increase to all “trigger-pullers” is the wrong answer. In the long run, he is clearly correct, but maybe there is another dimension that bears consideration—the Trainees, Transients, Holdees, and Students (TTHS) limits."
    • Published On: 6/1/2007
  •  From Munich to Munich

    From Munich to Munich

    From Munich to Munich Dr Stephen J Blank Op-Ed by the US Army War College, Strategic Studies Institute "In Munich in 1938, the West abandoned Central and Eastern Europe to the dictators. On February 10, 2007, Vladimir Putin demanded that it do so again. In his confrontational speech to the annual Wehrkunde conference in Munich, Putin blasted U.S. policy, blaming American unilateralism for provoking a new arms race, destabilizing the Middle East, undermining international institutions, distorting the purpose of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), expanding the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), and supporting democratic revolutions in the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS)..."
    • Published On: 4/1/2007
  •  The Missing Debate

    The Missing Debate

    The Missing Debate Prof John R Martin, Dr Gordon Rudd Op-Ed by the US Army War College, Strategic Studies Institute "While the surge of 21,500 additional troops to Iraq is consuming national headlines, another important debate is being marginalized. With little public attention, Congress recently authorized an increase of 92,000 uniformed personnel for the Army and Marines. Although significant operationally, the Iraq augmentation is temporary; the larger increase will be permanent, with long-term strategic implications for national security capabilities. Without a thoughtful debate on how to structure the permanent plus-up, the additional 92,000 Soldiers and Marines may have only limited utility."
    • Published On: 3/1/2007
  •  In Defense of Rational Risk Assessment

    In Defense of Rational Risk Assessment

    In Defense of Rational Risk Assessment Mr Nathan P Freier Op-Ed by the US Army War College, Strategic Studies Institute "Risk in Webster’s is “the possibility of suffering harm or loss.”1 Risk accompanies both action and inaction. To strategists, it is accounted for and mitigated, but not always or even commonly avoided. To the national security strategist, risk—to paraphrase the current defense strategy—is the likelihood of failure or prohibitive cost in pursuit of key objectives. In this view, some goals are beyond reach. Others are within reach, but the cost of achieving them puts more important ambitions in some jeopardy. Unfortunately, those familiar with contemporary strategic-level military decisionmaking know that rational consideration of even the prospect of failure is absent. In high-level policy discussions, success is assumed."
    • Published On: 2/1/2007
  •  Negotiating with Iran and Syria over Iraq

    Negotiating with Iran and Syria over Iraq

    Negotiating with Iran and Syria over Iraq Dr W Andrew Terrill Op-Ed by the US Army War College, Strategic Studies Institute "The United States has been struggling for decades to establish effective ways to deal with Iran and Syria, with no easy answer coming to the fore. In recent years, the question sometimes was framed as to whether we should seek regime change for these nations or accept the existence of the current regimes and attempt to change their behavior through political pressure and negotiations. Recently, the possibility of coercive regime change seems to have been ruled out under all but the most exceptional circumstances by a key administration official."
    • Published On: 1/1/2007
  •  Iraqi Security Forces and Lessons from Korea

    Iraqi Security Forces and Lessons from Korea

    Iraqi Security Forces and Lessons from Korea Dr Sheila Miyoshi Jager Op-Ed by the US Army War College, Strategic Studies Institute "The creation of a viable Iraqi security force has been the sine qua non of our success in Iraq (and the withdrawal of our military). The key question is, is this still feasible? This is not the first time we have undertaken such a task. Some succeeded (the Balkans and El Salvador), some failed (Vietnam), and some are ongoing (Afghanistan). But it was in South Korea, after its liberation at the end of World War II, where we first attempted to build a national security force from the ground up..."
    • Published On: 12/1/2006
  •  Transformation's Uncontested Truths

    Transformation's Uncontested Truths

    Transformation's Uncontested Truths Dr Antulio J Echevarria II Op-Ed by the US Army War College, Strategic Studies Institute "Much of the literature concerning military transformation in the United States employs a number of popular, but hitherto unchallenged clichés. Unfortunately, when phrases are repeated frequently enough, they begin to sound true. In policy circles, where haste is often by necessity the order of the day, that poor basis can suffice to justify any number of decisions. Clichés and catchwords are merely handy ways of capturing and conveying truths; they may reveal a lack of imagination on the part of the user, but they are hardly dangerous. Unsubstantiated clichés, however, are another matter."
    • Published On: 11/1/2006
  •  Fashion Tips for the Field Grade

    Fashion Tips for the Field Grade

    Fashion Tips for the Field Grade Dr Leonard Wong Op-Ed by the US Army War College, Strategic Studies Institute "From my perch here in the ivory fortress of the U.S. Army War College, I am tasked to look across the Army, take notice of strategic trends in the human dimension of war, and then ponder their implications for the military. Recently, I have felt compelled to address a strategic trend noticed by most everyone in the Army, yet seldom discussed in open company. Although I have yet to get my hands on the actual statistics to prove it, I believe that right about the time an officer attains the rank of major, his choice of clothing begins to narrow down to two or three items. As a result, he begins to stand out in a crowd because his civilian wardrobe is about 7 or 8 years out of date. (I focus on males because they (we) have greater need for correction.)"
    • Published On: 10/1/2006
  •  "What If?" -- A Most Impertinent Question Indeed

    "What If?" -- A Most Impertinent Question Indeed

    "What If?" -- A Most Impertinent Question Indeed Mr Nathan P Freier Op-Ed by the US Army War College, Strategic Studies Institute "We are in an era of persistent, purposeful, and increasingly complex resistance to American primacy. Unfortunately, the strategic discourse necessary to guide us through our current predicament has yet to coalesce around an appropriate logic. Despite 5 years of irregular conflict, military purists in and out of uniform continue their search for clean boundaries between war and peace—boundaries that will again allow them to focus on the most traditional conceptions of “warfighting” at the expense of those concepts and capabilities necessary to our success against the likeliest and most strategically consequential future challenges."
    • Published On: 9/1/2006
  •  Doctrine that Works

    Doctrine that Works

    Doctrine that Works Dr Douglas V Johnson II Op-Ed by the US Army War College, Strategic Studies Institute, US Army War College Press " I recently spent a morning talking with a scholar who is researching material for a book on the U.S. Army’s willingness to learn about war above the tactical and operational level. His thesis echoes, to some degree, Dr. Antulio Echevarria’s monograph that concludes that there is an American Way of Battle, but not an “American Way of War,” as Russell F. Weigley’s well-studied book suggests. This scholar was asking for evidence to identify change points in the development of U.S. Army thinking about war during the decades of the 1970s and 1980s."
    • Published On: 8/1/2006
  •  Canadian Defense Policy--A breath of Fresh Air

    Canadian Defense Policy--A breath of Fresh Air

    Canadian Defense Policy--A breath of Fresh Air Dr Alex Crowther Op-Ed by the US Army War College, Strategic Studies Institute "Canada and the United States closely cooperated in most security issues during the 20th century. In recent years, however, security relations between Canada and the United States have become strained, mainly due to disagreements on the methods used by the United States in prosecuting the Global War on Terror. The first policy issue was the Canadian government’s decision to decrease security resources significantly in the wake of the Cold War. The second issue centers on Canada’s disagreement concerning Operation IRAQI FREEDOM, as well as other U.S. policy decisions such as the use of Guantanamo Bay."
    • Published On: 7/1/2006
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