20 June 2018

Why did Pakistan's F-16s refuse to engage the IAF's Mig-29s during the Kargil War?

With its powerful MiG-29s swatting away Pakistani F-16s, the Indian Air Force’s MiG-21, MiG-27 and Mirage-2000 jets were able to devastate Pakistani military positions with impunity during the 1999 conflict. India was minutes away from bombing Pakistan on June 13, 1999 during the Kargil War. The Indian Air Force had deployed 16 jet fighters, mostly MiGs, for carrying out attacks deep into enemy territory. MiG-29’s are air superiority fighters and are equipped/loaded for it while F-16’s are interceptors. Fundamentally different planes and interceptors don’t match well against air superiority fighters. Also, at the point in time, the India MiG’s were much better equipped and loaded for air confrontations when compared to the Pakistani Air Force.

Ideas for a Public Broadcaster in India

The recent Cobrapost revelations paint a dreary picture of Indian media. The willingness of several media houses to push a specific political agenda for money is a cause for concern. Given the struggle to stay afloat in a competitive market, it is difficult to see these groups making the ethical choice of refusing the money on offer. The picture on the other end of the spectrum is no less discouraging. The Prasar Bharati, the notionally autonomous institution that is supposed to act as a public broadcaster, has been dogged by controversies that showcase its susceptibility to pressure from the ruling government. I even wrote about this a year ago, stressing on the need to set up a Parliamentary Committee to oversee its operations.

India’s Tiny Declaration of Independence

Mihir Sharma

It was the most carefully examined little square of newsprint in recent Indian history. Last week, a small job ad appeared on the inside pages of some newspapers looking for candidates for the post of "joint secretary" in the Indian government. Within a few hours, the ad had gone viral: Opposition politicians had weighed in, Twitter was agog and hundreds of thousands of 40ish Indians wondered if they had one last, unexpected opportunity to make their parents proud.

Taliban Demonstrates Resilience With Afghan Spring Offensive

By: Animesh Roul

The Taliban’s notorious spring offensive, an annual war ritual launched this year on April 25, has resulted in a series of violent strikes across Afghanistan, demonstrating once again the resilience of the group. The Taliban claims to have carried out as many as 300 attacks on various targets in the first three days of its offensive alone (Voice of Jihad/Alemarah, April 29). Government sources meanwhile say the group had, by May 7, carried out more than 2,600 operations across the country, of which the Afghan armed forces foiled as many as 1,700 (Tolo News, May 7).

A CIA agent, North Korea and Pak. bomb

Kallol Bhattacherjee

When he met the North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un, U.S. President Donald Trump remarked that the nuclear standoff with Pyongyang could have been dealt with long ago. Indeed, 30 years ago, Richard Barlow, an officer with the CIA detected the nuclear supply chain that ultimately would travel from the U.S. to Pakistan and further to North Korea. For exposing this clandestine network, Mr. Barlow says he was victimised and made to live like a pauper in a motorhome.

Why Cashing in on Lithium in South America Won't Be Easy


Argentina, Bolivia and Chile will increase in importance as the global demand for lithium rises. Political, logistical and regulatory challenges will prevent the three countries from developing their lithium reserves to their full potential. Because of Chile's quotas and Argentina's shift in economic outlook, Chile is likely to benefit most from the larger global demand for lithium.

Avoiding World War III in Asia

Parag Khanna

World War II still hasn’t ended, yet World War III already looms. When China and Japan agreed to normalize relations in 1945, it was stipulated that the disputed Senkaku/Diaoyu Islands (a string of uninhabited rocks equidistant from Japan, China and Taiwan) would not be militarized and the dispute would be put off for future generations. That future is here. The recent discovery of large oil and gas reserves under the islands has heated up the situation dramatically, with military budgets surging, and warships, coast guards and fighter jets scrambling to assert control over the commons.

America Wasn't Tough Enough on China's ZTE—Here's How to Make It Right

Grant Newsham

The Trump Administration has been better than its predecessors when it comes to Asia. However, the chance to reign in ZTE has been misplayed, and such opportunities come along infrequently. The United States Commerce Department has granted Chinese telecom company, ZTE, a reprieve from a seven-year ban on using U.S.-made parts—a bad that was effectively a corporate death sentence. However, ZTE remains on probation and has to do a few things. These include; paying a $1 billion fine and placing $400 million in escrow—money forfeited in the event of future misbehavior; replacing ZTE’s board and management within thirty days; and installing a U.S.-selected compliance team for ten years.

Trump’s focus on China trade: Right target, wrong approach

Ryan Hass

In assailing China’s unfair trade practices, President Trump has aimed his fire at a potent political symbol. Both progressive supporters of Bernie Sanders and conservative stalwarts of President Trump believe China deserves blame for job losses and wage stagnation. Trump is on firm footing in arguing that China’s unfair policies advantage Chinese firms over U.S. competitors. There is public support for breaking some crockery to fix these problems, even if that means enduring some short-term pain for long-term gain. Despite looming tariff threats, equity markets have climbed and the unemployment rate has fallen. In other words, it is understandable why Trump believes there is a solid case for confronting China now on its trade practices. But there is a smart way and a self-defeating way to address the challenge and, at the moment, Trump is pursuing the latter.

Russia, China Are Outmaneuvering US: Generals Recommend New Authorities, Doctrine


China and Russia are outmaneuvering the US, using aggressive actions that fall short of war, a group of generals and admirals have concluded. To counter them, the US needs new ways to use its military without shooting, concludes a newly released report on the Quantico conclave. The US military will need new legal authorities and new concepts of operation for all domains — land, sea, air, space, and cyberspaceFrom Little Green Men in Crimea to fortified artificial islands in the South China Sea, from online meddling with US elections to global information operations and to industrial-scale cyber espionage, America’s adversaries have found ways to achieve their objectives and undermine the West without triggering a US military response, operating in what’s come to be called “the grey zone.” No less a figure than Defense Secretary Jim Mattis took on the topic in his National Defense Strategy and in this morning’s graduation address to the Naval Academy.

China’s Eating Up US Drone Market; U.S. Troops At Risk


U.S. forces are at increasing risk as China and other nations sell more armed drones to anyone with the money to pay for them, and restrictive U.S. export policies may be making the situation worse, says a new report delivered to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs. The RAND Corp. report says that drones produced by unfriendly nations will pose a “growing threat to U.S. and allied military operations,” in the near future, as China, Russia, and Iran recognize the power of unmanned platforms, making it certain that in future conflicts, “U.S. forces will have to cope with adversaries equipped with different types and sizes of UAVs, both armed and unarmed.”

Expanding the Intellectual Capital on Challenges: China

Paul Morris

In western civilization, the classics of military strategy are often cited but rarely read. In contrast, Luo Guanzhong’s classic Three Kingdoms forms a subconscious foundation for the masses in eastern civilization to discuss strategy. Historical figures such as Cao Cao, Liu Bei, and the great strategist Kongming resonate more than most contemporary figures today. The Three Kingdoms is considered one of the four classics of Chinese literature with widespread availability in print, DVD, audio, cartoon, video games, and film.[1] In 2008, the film Red Cliff (the most well-known battle in the Three Kingdoms) broke box office records for the highest grossing film in China. On par with the significance of the Napoleonic and Peloponnesian Wars, the Three Kingdoms documents the fall of the Han Dynasty and one of the most significant battles in Chinese history.

Just the Fear of a Trade War Is Straining the Global Economy

By Peter S. Goodman, Ian Austen and Elisabeth Malkin

LONDON — Only a few months ago, the global economy appeared to be humming, with all major nations growing in unison. Now, the world’s fortunes are imperiled by an unfolding trade war. As the Trump administration imposes tariffs on allies and rivals alike, provoking broad retaliation, global commerce is suffering disruption, flashing signs of strains that could hamper economic growth. The latest escalation came on Friday, when President Trump announced fresh tariffs on $50 billion in Chinese goods, prompting swift retribution from Beijing. As the conflict broadens, shipments are slowing at ports and airfreight terminals around the world. Prices for crucial raw materials are rising. At factories from Germany to Mexico, orders are being cut and investments delayed. American farmers are losing sales as trading partners hit back with duties of their own.

How Many Countries Are There in the World in 2018?

This Partner Perspective, originally published in 2011, was updated in January 2018. With the permission of Political Geography Now, we have also included supplementary graphics and photographs curated by Stratfor's Creative Department. Interested in learning more about where the countries listed below are heading this year? Check out our 2018 Annual Forecast.

The United States Economy Is Doing Well—Here's Why

Samuel Rines
Source Link

Attempting to parse the U.S. economy is not a simple task due to often competing or contradictory data points. Often, it is useful to take a step back and reassess where the U.S. economy currently sits, and what that means about the potential future of the economy. However, it does not take long to understand the current state of the U.S. economy this time around. While it is highly volatile, the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta’s GDPNow tracker puts U.S. gross domestic product growth at a 4.5 percent quarterly annualized increase. This is a significant acceleration from the previous sub-three percent first quarter. Can this estimate be trusted? Probably not. After all, the GDPNow indicator projected the relatively disappointing first quarter to grow at more than five percent in February.

Alexis Tsipras Deserves the Nobel Peace Prize

Source Link

The two leaders who deserve the Nobel Peace Prize did not meet this week in Singapore. Instead, they will meet Sunday on the banks of a clear, freshwater lake that borders Greece, Macedonia, and Albania. Prime Ministers Alexis Tsipras of Greece and Zoran Zaev of Macedonia — a country on track to be known formally as North Macedonia — will sign an agreement to resolve the bitter decades-long conflict over Macedonia’s name.

Angela Merkel’s political near-death experience in Bavarian brawl


BERLIN — After years of cautious sparring, Angela Merkel’s standoff with her party’s Bavarian partners over refugee policy escalated into a bare-knuckled brawl on Thursday, threatening both the stability of Germany’s grand coalition and the conservative bloc that has been the bedrock of its political establishment for decades. Merkel’s refusal to endorse a plan by her Bavarian interior minister to turn back some refugees at the German border set the stage for a showdown that, barring a last-minute compromise, could bring down her government.

Russian Air-Delivered Non-Strategic Nuclear Weapons

By Mark B. Schneider
Before starting a discussion of Russian non-strategic or tactical air-delivered nuclear weapons, it is important for the reader to understand that these weapons do not exist in isolation. They are part of what amounts to a Russian non-strategic nuclear Triad composed of: 1) ground-based nuclear capable short- to intermediate-range ballistic and cruise missiles; 2) a sea-based force of nuclear-capable cruise missiles carried on both surface ships and submarines; and 3) an air-delivered non-strategic nuclear force of Backfire bombers and a variety of long-range fighter aircraft which carry both nuclear bombs and nuclear-capable ballistic and cruise missiles. Russia’s non-strategic nuclear Triad has the same resilience, flexibility, survivability, and defense penetration ability of Russia’s better known strategic Triad. Only Russia, and apparently China, have a non-strategic nuclear Triad. Russia is secretive about its non-strategic nuclear capabilities, particularly its low-yield weapons; hence, it is unlikely that the picture derived from open sources is complete.

Army Troops Train for Urban Conflict in Europe

By Vivienne Machi

PARIS — The Army must train and prepare for urban combat in Europe as the possibility of state-on-state warfare reemerges, a top commander said June 14. The service is “working assiduously” on generating unit and headquarters readiness to fight large-scale conventional combat operations and maintain a strategic advantage on the ground, Lt. Gen. Christopher Cavoli said at the Eurosatory air and land defense conference outside Paris. Cavoli assumed the role of U.S. Army Europe commander in January. Army troops are also training for a possible conflict in urban environments, he noted.

Should the U.S. intelligence community be more open about cyber operations?

Do American intelligence communities need to rethink secrecy when it comes to cyber warfare? It's something New York Times national security correspondent and best-selling author David Sanger suggests in his new book, "The Perfect Weapon: War, Sabotage, and Fear in the Cyber Age."  "The classifications surrounding cyber is one of the biggest reasons that we've got a continued threat. It's one of the first weapons that was ever developed by the intelligence community, and they're naturally secretive, and I understand that. And they don't want to reveal the ways they defend ourselves and do offense," Sanger said Friday on "CBS This Morning."  "But it gets into a big problem, and the big problem is that if you don't begin to talk about your capabilities, if you don't talk about what you may do in return, you've created no deterrence at all."

State's New Cyber Reports Miss the Point Entirely

David Fidler

On May 31, the State Department released summaries of reports on deterrence and international engagement in cyberspace. In Executive Order 13800, President Donald J. Trump instructed federal agencies to produce a report on “options for deterring adversaries.” The order also instructed the secretary of state, coordinating with other federal agencies, to submit a report “documenting an engagement strategy for international cooperation in cybersecurity.” With U.S. cyber policy facing serious challenges and questions about the Trump administration's approach to cyber threats rife, these reports provided the administration with an opportunity to formulate strategies to improve cyber engagement and deterrence. However, the summaries suggest the reports fail to acknowledge the crisis that U.S. cyber policy faces and recycle ideas that have been around for years. The administration's behavior also raises doubts that it is willing and able to implement what the reports recommend. 

America's Strength: Teaching International Military Students

Jean Dagher
Source Link

Interactions between allies and partner nations require a common language, shared understanding and mutual trust. Furthermore, interoperabilitybetween militaries has become more important to accomplish unified efforts and achieve the military objectives of collaborating coalitions. The United States invites international military students from various countries to study all aspects of the profession funded through security assistance programs such as the International Military Education and Training program. This whole effort contributes to the United States’ strategic objectives outlined in its latestNational Security Strategy and National Defense Strategy.


The U.S. famously spends far more money on its military than any other country, splurging a whopping $610 billion every year. This number dwarfs other countries’ military spending—to get some context, you should know that the combined spend of the next seven highest countries is less than that. Nevertheless, the amount the U.S. spends on defense has fallen from its height in 2010 when it reached $768 billion. In 2017, the world as a whole spent $1.74 trillion on its military, up 1.1 percent.

Gen. Milley is right: The US Army is on the mend

By: Dan Goure  
Source Link

Last month, in an appearance before the Defense Subcommittee of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Chief of Staff of the U.S. Army Gen. Mark Milley provided a notably upbeat assessment of the state of his service. “The Army is on the mend. I can report out to you today, after two and a half years as the chief of staff of the Army, we are in significantly better shape than we were just a short time ago. And that is through the generosity of this Congress and the American people,” he said. 

Machine Strategists & the Future of Military Operations

By Thomas Keelan

What do drunk Google searches and war have in common? They’re both chaotic, incoherent and occasionally regrettable. They are also both more effectively solved by machine learning. Modern technology has made military strategy more complicated than ever – just look at China’s recent installation of cruise missiles on its artificial islands in the South China Sea. It’s becoming harder and harder for humans to keep up. Far away from the “tactical edge” of soldiers and weapons, smart algorithms like Google’s RankBrain will soon be needed to analyze the mountains of data and invent new military strategies. 

19 June 2018

How Can India Reform Its Civil Service?

By Himanil Raina
“…in no other democracy do generalists so comprehensively corner the top jobs at the higher levels of the administration. In no other modern society does a person, who got a high rank in an examination 35 years ago, automatically go on and be allotted a high-status, high-impact, and vastly important government job, based only or largely on that exam rank.”

The Indian Civil Service functioned through most of British rule in India as the steel frame that kept the Raj aloft. Post-independence, the role of manning the most important administrative positions in both the central and state governments fell to the Indian Administrative Service (IAS). It is hard to overstate the range and degree of influence that this cadre of officials exercises in India. One hundred and eighty individuals are accepted into the IAS each year from over a million applicants following a multistage examination. While this process results in the recruitment of some incredibly bright young men and women, it has also resulted in a situation where, as one commentator observes, “a potato expert is looking after defense, a veterinary doctor is supervising engineers, and a history graduate is dictating the health policy.”

Mobile App Developers in India Are Always Fighting Losing Battles

By Ashraff Hathibelagal

Android, the most popular mobile operating system today, is free and open source. So are almost all libraries and toolchains related to Android application development. Given these facts, one would assume that developers all over the world, no matter how poor a country they come from, have an equal chance at making it big on Google Play, the official marketplace for Android apps. Yet, developers living in India, despite their numbers, rarely manage to develop apps or games that go on to achieve wide international acclaim.

‘Britain Would Collapse If It Tried to Pay Back the Money it Drained From India’

Britain would collapse if it tried to pay back the money it drained from India, eminent economist Utsa Patnaik said at a conference at Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi on Wednesday. Delivering the inaugural lecture at the three-day Sam Moyo Memorial Conference on “Land and Labour Questions in the Global South”, Utsa Patnaik said that the estimated drain from India to Britain over the period from 1765 to 1938 was a whopping 9.184 trillion pounds, several times the size of the UK’s GDP today.

Are We Finally Seeing a Breakthrough in Afghanistan-Pakistan Relations?

By Daud Khattak

Nothing can be more reassuring, if taken at face value, than a tweet in Pashto, one of the two official languages of Afghanistan, by the director-general of the Pakistan military’s media wing congratulating the Afghan cricket squad for its victory against Bangladesh. “We congratulate the Afghan cricket team winning the series against Bangladesh, which also played well,” said the tweet, from Major-General Asif Ghafoor’s personal Twitter account on June 7. Another tweet, again both in English and Pashto, from his official twitter account on June 12 stated that “Pakistan wishes to see National Unity Government and US/NATO succeeding to bring peace in Afghanistan.”

China’s New Missiles in the Spratlys May be a Turning Point

By Steven Stashwick

In April, Chinese President Xi Jinping oversaw the PLA Navy’s largest-ever display of warships, submarines, and aircraft in a massive naval review in the South China Sea. Last month, U.S. intelligence sources revealed that around the same time as that show of overt might, China quietly deployed advanced anti-ship cruise missiles and anti-air missiles to bases on three disputed features in the Spratly Islands. In contrast to China’s earlier incremental moves in the South China Sea, this deployment motivated the United States and an expanding coalition of partners to impose new consequences on China and commit to a greater military presence in the region.

Here Come the US-China Tariffs

By Shannon Tiezzi

It’s official: the U.S.-China trade war will kick off on July 6. That’s the date U.S. tariffs on a lengthy list of Chinese imports will take effect, with China’s retaliatory tariffs are expected to launch the same day. Back in April, the U.S. Commerce Department had announced that $50 billion worth of Chinese goods would be hit with 25 percent tariffs “in response to China’s policies that coerce American companies into transferring their technology and intellectual property to domestic Chinese enterprises.” June 15 marked the deadline for the United States to release its list of products to be targeted for tariffs, after a public comment process concluded. In that sense, today was also an important drop-dead date for calling off the trade war without any “casualties” (ie actual sanctions being levied).

A West in Crisis, an East Rising? Comparing the G7 and the SCO

By Catherine Putz

While much of the world watched the tense G7 meeting in Charlevoix, Canada from June 8 to 9 and chattered about the rapidly approaching June 12 Singapore summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, in Qingdao, China on June 9-10 the leaders of eight other nations also gathered in concert. The Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) annual summit returned to China at the opening of a new chapter. Not only has the organization expanded — this summit was India and Pakistan’s first as full-fledged members — but the global order itself appears to be sliding from West to East. The slide may not be new, but the two summits side-by-side display the dissonance: a West breaking apart and an East consolidating.

China Adds Advanced Missiles to South China Sea Islands

BY: Bill Gertz
Source Link

China’s military has stepped up militarizing disputed islands in the South China Sea by deploying advanced missile systems on the Spratly islands, according to the Pentagon. Defense officials disclosed to the Washington Free Beacon that the militarization has raised alarm bells about China’s creeping takeover of the strategic waterway used for some $5 trillion annually in international trade. The officials previewed Defense Department concerns detailed in the forthcoming China military power report. The annual report to Congress is expected to be made public in the near future. “China is continuing its gradual deployment of military equipment to its Spratly Islands outposts in the disputed South China Sea,” said one senior official.

Iran, Russia: What’s at Stake in the Syrian Civil War

By Xander Snyder

This article was originally published by Geopolitical Futures (GPF) on 23 May 2018.

The era of foreign intervention in Syria is coming to an end – at least that’s what Russian President Vladimir Putin said when Bashar Assad, Syria’s president, visited Sochi last week. Granted, Putin’s statement was ambiguous – “in connection with the significant victories … of the Syrian army … foreign armed forces will be withdrawn from the territory of the Syrian Arab Republic” – but Russia’s Syria envoy clarified the next day that Putin was, in fact, calling on all militaries to vacate the country.

Grading the Singapore Summit: Compared to What?

Graham Allison
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In the hyperpolarized state of American politics and policy debate, both critics and supporters of the Trump administration have become so predictable that they are now background noise. If required to summarize my assessment of the Trump-Kim summit in one line, it would be: oversold and undervalued. Despite their best efforts, his critics haven’t come close to matching Trump’s preposterous claim that “There is no longer a Nuclear Threat from North Korea.” The critical test in assessing moves on the international chessboard is the question: “compared to what?” Against the bottom line of American national interests, how does the sum of what we just witnessed in Singapore compare to all the feasible alternatives?

Is NATO Pushing Russia Towards Retaliation?

Ted Galen Carpenter
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The United States and its NATO allies continue to find ways to antagonize Russia. The latest provocation is a request from Norway to more than double the number of U.S. troops stationed on its territory and deploy them even closer to the border with Russia. Granted, the numbers involved are not large. There are currently 330 American military personnel in the country on a “rotational” basis. Oslo’s new request would increase the number to seven hundred. If the Norwegian government gets its way, the new troops would be stationed in the far north, barely 260 miles from Russia, in contrast to the existing unit in central Norway, several hundred miles from Russian territory.

No War But Trade War

By Robert Farley

Trade war has been joined. This morning, the United States Trade Representative released a list of sanctions against Chinese goods. China immediately replied with a promise of counter-sanctions against U.S. goods. The reasoning behind the sanctions mostly revolves around the threat posed by China to American intellectual property, manifest in Chinese industrial policy, technology transfer policy, and industrial espionage. This action represents an abrupt reversal of the May 20 declaration that the United States and China would “put the trade war on hold.” But then unpredictability is a hallmark of the Trump administration; indeed, there is good reason to believe that Trump thinks unpredictability is an asset in international negotiations. But it’s worth wondering precisely how the United States is thinking about this trade war. Wars should have a point; it makes it so much more interesting for the participants. And there’s some question as to whether the goal of this war is to make trade with China more fair, or simply to inflict pain on the PRC.

Russia’s Electronic Warfare Advances Offers Stealth Capability for Fighter Aircraft

By: Roger McDermott
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An underlying driver in the reform of the Russian Armed Forces, first initiated in the fall of 2009, has proved to be the adoption and adaption of “command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance” (C4ISR) capabilities to offer conventional options against a high-technology adversary. A key factor in the introduction of a Russian variant of the concept of network-centric warfare is the complete overhaul and modernization of its Electronic Warfare (Radioelektronnaya Borba—EW) inventory (see EDM, April 17, May 17). While considerable progress was made in this effort during 2009–2014, advances in Russian C4ISR and EW were exponentially boosted following Russia’s interventions in Ukraine and Syria. Not only have Russian pilots and various specialists benefitted from the combat experience in Syria, but research and development (R&D) into EW has reaped massive rewards from the opportunity to trial and test an array of advanced systems in a complex operational warfighting environment. In this process, one of the chief benefactors has been the Aerospace Forces (Vozdushno Kosmicheskikh Sil—VKS), similarly tried and tested in combat over the past three years in operations over Syria. And now, evidence has emerged of a technological breakthrough for Russian EW capability that, when applied to airpower, offers a de facto stealth capability for some of its most modern fighter platforms (Pravda-tv.ru, June 9; see EDM, December 12, 2017).

Training Cyberspace Maneuver

Andrew Schoka
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The principle of maneuver in military operations has dominated strategic military thinking for over two thousand years. Foundational to the understanding of maneuver theory is the concept of warfighting domains, the fundamental environments in which military forces engage in warfare. As the development of ships heralded the introduction of the ocean as a warfighting domain, maneuver theory evolved to incorporate the employment of naval forces. Likewise, the development of aviation necessitated the inclusion of the atmosphere as a warfighting domain and brought about the consideration of aerial assets into maneuver thinking. Space followed, presenting a highly technical domain to be considered within the context of military operations. Maneuver theory has now evolved to consider the first man-and-machine-made domain, in which cyberspace, as an artificial information domain, overlaps, intersects, and engages with the four other warfighting domains. The unique nature of the cyberspace warfighting domain presents a host of distinct challenges and considerations to maneuver thinking, requiring a change to the approach of training maneuver warfare principles for military cyberspace leaders.

Has the FBI Created a Constitutional Crisis?

Daniel McCarthy
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James Comey was a wildcat FBI director who acted outside the chain of command when the bureau was involved in politically sensitive investigations. That’s one conclusion of the Justice Department inspector general’s report on the FBI’s conduct in investigating Hillary Clinton’s use of a private server for official and sensitive email. Comey was “insubordinate” for failing to clear his public remarks about the case with the Justice Department. The attorney general at the time, Loretta Lynch, also acted improperly by meeting with Bill Clinton in June 2016 on her plane while it was on the tarmac in Phoenix, Arizona.

Stalin Falsified the Data, Then Killed the Statisticians

The painful history between Russia and Ukraine did not begin with Moscow’s invasion of Crimea in 2014. In the 1930s, the Soviet Union’s policies led to a famine that killed more than 3 million Ukrainians. Joseph Stalin, who directed his paranoia and brutality particularly at Ukrainians, sent his henchmen to confiscate food and block roads. Later, he falsified documents to keep the famine from being written into history. The story is told in Anne Applebaum’s recent book, Red Famine: Stalin’s War on Ukraine. Applebaum, who has won a Pulitzer Prize, joins us this week on our podcast, The ER.


The title above is from Kelly Sheridan’s June 13, 2018 article she posted on the security and technology website, DarkReading.com. And, she’s right, as being associated with blockchain has become a cottage industry on Wall Street. “If you haven’t jumped into the blockchain frenzy, chances are – you at least know about it,” Ms.Sheridan begins. “The Internet is flooded with talk about the up-and-coming technology….though little of it mentions security.” Sound familiar? Sounds like the early days of the Internet, when ease of use and access were paramount and security was an after-thought.

BAE to develop first-of-its-kind war gaming software for DARPA to model conflicts

By George Allison

The modelling software is intended to help military planners explore the causes of a conflict and assess potential approaches. The U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is sponsoring BAE Systems to develop software that will aid military planners in understanding and addressing the complex dynamics that drive conflicts around the world. Under a $4.2 million Phase 1 contract awarded by the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL), the Causal Exploration of Complex Operational Environments program seeks to develop technology to model different political, territorial, and economic tensions that often lead to conflicts, helping planners to avoid unexpected outcomes.

According to the company:

The Wounds of the Drone Warrior

By Eyal Press

In the spring of 2006, Christopher Aaron started working 12-hour shifts in a windowless room at the Counterterrorism Airborne Analysis Center in Langley, Va. He sat before a wall of flat-screen monitors that beamed live, classified video feeds from drones hovering in distant war zones. On some days, Aaron discovered, little of interest appeared on the screens, either because a blanket of clouds obscured visibility or because what was visible — goats grazing on an Afghan hillside, for instance — was mundane, even serene. Other times, what unspooled before Aaron’s eyes was jarringly intimate: coffins being carried through the streets after drone strikes; a man squatting in a field to defecate after a meal (the excrement generated a heat signature that glowed on infrared); an imam speaking to a group of 15 young boys in the courtyard of his madrasa. If a Hellfire missile killed the target, it occurred to Aaron as he stared at the screen, everything the imam might have told his pupils about America’s war with their faith would be confirmed.

The 12 Critical Areas That Require Addressing: An Army General Officer’s (Retired) Perspective

Donald C. Bolduc

There are 12 critical areas that must be addressed to ensure the Army is successful in the future. None of what appears here has to do with technology, but rather people, our most important asset. The 12 critical areas are as follows:
Mission Command
Counseling and Mentoring
Talent Management
Senior Leader Selection
Get Public Affairs Right
Get Multi-Generation Communication Right
Military Service and Veterans Heath, Morale, and Welfare:
Revise the Education System
Mandatory Service

Installations of the Future: A Soldier’s Letter from the Garrison

Wilder Alejandro Sanchez and Samuel Casey

This “letter home” is presented as part of the TRADOC G2's "Soldier 2050" Call for Ideas. This material will form a compendium of thoughts and ideas that will support the exploration of future bio-convergence implications on the Army of 2050.

Dear Mom,

I really appreciate the whole care package, but next time could you perhaps send a few more cans of power drinks and sweets?

I really miss those from back home.

Questioning the Case for War

Christopher A. Preble
Source Link

While much of the world is focused on the war avoided (temporarily at least) on the Korean Peninsula, I’ve been thinking about the one in Iraq that we failed to stop fifteen years ago—and the one that some still want to fight in neighboring Iran. The occasion for this reflection is the upcoming release of Rob Reiner’s “Shock and Awe,” a film about Knight Ridder’s Washington Bureau, one of the very few American news organizations that got the Iraq story right.
McClatchy, which acquired Knight Ridder in 2006, hosted an advanced screening this week at the Newseum. A discussion with Reiner and the four real-life characters who are the film’s main characters followed: DC Bureau Chief John Wolcott, and reporters Jonathan Landay, Warren Strobel, and Joe Galloway. (McClatchy has compiled several of the stories featured in the filmhere).

Changing change while it changes: The rise of disruptive military thinking (Part 3)

Editor’s Note: Mr. John Sarubbi, Product Marketing Management Leader at IBM, sat down to interview Ben about his upcoming keynote speaking engagement at IBM’s Stream Processing Application Declarative Engine (SPADE) Conference in Copenhagen, Denmark on June 18-21, 2018. SPADE is IBM’s invite-only, signature event fordefense and intelligence. This year’s theme is Re-Thinking Defense and Security in the Digital Age. This interview is broken into a 3-part series. Part one, published last week, focused on the definition and utility of military design. In part two, published earlier this week, Ben explains the evolution and application of military design as well as how it relates to other forms of design such as industry design and civilian design. In this final part of the interview Ben further dives into the vitality of military design for planning military operations that enable a commander to achieve a decisive advantage over an adversary.

It’s A Big Deal: An Officer Grades The Army Staff College And Its Leadership

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The reliance on MDMP to solve every problem was mind-boggling to me. The use of this methodology and outdated tools and programs severely limited our ability to gain value-added knowledge. MDMP is a linear and rigid step-by-step method for solving simple and complicated problems. It’s too bad we live in a complex world. While CGSC attempted to make sense of information during the end of our core curriculum through a cumulative exam and oral presentation, it did not lead to knowledge.
Critical Thinking

Grade: D