URGENT: PUT THIS IN YOUR PURSE (DUSTY SHELVES)

In October 1962, during what become known as the Cuban Missile Crisis, the Navy evacuated nearly 3000 dependents from its base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, in less than five hours. The hastily written yet elegant instructions given to those dependents – mostly the wives of Officers and Sailors station there – is the stuff of stories. WAR ROOM welcomes J. Overton to the DUSTY SHELVES series to examine the instruction and the evacuation procedure it enabled.

A CORNERSTONE OF PEACE: WOMEN IN AFGHANISTAN

If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor. If an elephant has its foot on the tail of a mouse, and you say that you are neutral, the mouse will not appreciate your neutrality. ― Desmond Tutu In November 2001, just one month after the United States […]

LESSONS FROM SYRIA’S LOW-PROFILE NARRATIVE WAR

These accounts and portraits exemplify a conflict fought parallel to, but distinct from, the fight for physical territory… As the threat of disinformation enters the public consciousness, the scale of the problem already confounds the effective implementation of counterstrategies. There is evidence of incremental progress within the ongoing information arms race against high-profile, government-led disinformation […]

LIKE YOUR BRAIN HAS JUST GONE TO THE GYM (WARGAMING ROOM)

A BETTER PEACE welcomes Chris Dougherty and Becca Wasser from The Gaming Lab at the Center for New American Security (CNAS). Chris and Becca join host Ken Gilliam in our special series the WARGAMING ROOM to discuss the efforts and contributions of CNAS to the gaming world. The three discuss how strategic gaming is used […]

MORE THAN MEETS THE EYE: WHY THE ALLIES WON (DUSTY SHELVES)

With such overwhelming numbers, how could the Allies not win? The numbers in World War II are striking. The Allies, who in many ways had not prepared properly for conflict, produced just over 20,000 aircraft in 1939, a number already almost double that of Germany and Japan. By 1943, the Allies manufactured about three and […]

AFTER 2020, WHAT’S NEXT? (A WHITEBOARD)

Managing homeland security challenges requires practitioners to engage in a discursive space that regularly increases in complexity and scope. For this Whiteboard we reached out to several skilled practitioners in collaboration with the Homeland Security Experts Group (HSEG) with the following prompt: What do you envision as the greatest challenges facing homeland security and domestic […]

RUSSIAN EXPANSION AND THE DEVELOPMENT OF HYBRID WARFARE

Cyber-attacks intentionally targeted the information systems of the Georgian government, where the flow of communications revolved around particular websites. In 2008, during the Summer Olympics in Beijing, the Russian armed forces began an invasion of Georgia through South Ossetia. The war with Georgia lasted only five days, and there were less than 1,000 battle deaths […]

HELMAND: TWO YEARS LATER

We taped the curling edges of our makeshift map to the General’s conference room – a holdover from the 2014 drawdown at Camp Bastion – and began to plan. We frantically duct-taped our map together, matching gridlines from adjacent sheets of paper as an image of the snaking Helmand River emerged. Despite the reintroduction of […]

PAST VISIONS OF FUTURE WARS

A BETTER PEACE welcomes Adam Seipp to discuss the world of Cold War literature. Adam’s previous article in our DUSTY SHELVES series reviewed Sir John Hackett’s 1978 best seller, The Third World War: August 1985. Hackett, deemed both the heir to Pat Frank and Neville Shute and also the ancestor of Tom Clancy and so […]

MILITARY GEOGRAPHY AND MILITARY STRATEGY

Military strategy depends on geography to a far greater degree than what is currently practiced or taught. One of the effects of the diminished attention to military strategy as warmaking has been to focus the efforts of military strategists on crafting or sorting out objectives. The favorite gripe of military professionals, even in military strategic […]

A LABORATORY FOR MILITARY PROFESSIONALS (WARGAMING ROOM)

A BETTER PEACE welcomes back Ken Gilliam for another installment of the WARGAMING ROOM. In this episode Ken sits down with Doug Winton, the chair of the Department of Military Strategy, Planning and Operations (DMSPO) at the U.S. Army War College. Ken and Doug discuss War College games like JOINT OVERMATCH and MDO 1943. They […]

OPIOID MISUSE/ABUSE BY SOLDIERS AND VETERANS OF THE U.S. ARMY

Opioid overdoses affect active duty and reserve component military personnel and military veterans. Every eleven minutes, there is a death from opioid overdose in the United States. Latest data from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) indicates that opioids killed nearly 67,000 people in 2018, and 67% of those deaths involved synthetic opioids. Despite receiving […]

A FATAL DOSE IN 2 MILLIGRAMS: FENTANYL AND NATIONAL SECURITY

The United States has identified drug trafficking, drug use, and drug manufacturing as important issues — domestically and internationally. In recent years, the opioid crisis has been at the center of many U.S. government efforts. Overdoses due to synthetic drugs have been on the rise for the past decade with fentanyl and its derivatives squarely […]

COVID-19 AND THE INFORMATION WAR: CHANGING THE NARRATIVE

One way to look at COVID-19 is as a conflict situation, involving a series of victims, rescuers, and persecutors/perpetrators. Globally, COVID-19 produced a triple crisis in healthcare, the economy, and politics. COVID-19 has infected nearly 45 million people, resulting in over 1 million deaths. The World Bank estimated that the global economy will contract by […]

UNDERSTANDING A DIFFERENT PEOPLE: THE OKINAWAN IDENTITY

When planning for interactions with foreign countries, whether in peace or in war, it can be easy for military planners to be lulled into the false security of the homogeneity of a culture or race or nationality. Many would argue that was exactly what happened in Afghanistan and Iraq in the last two decades. But […]

SECURITY COOPERATION: COLLABORATION IN THE ERA OF POWER COMPETITION

In the last decade, both China and Russia have significantly increased military diplomacy efforts. From post-WWII European reconstruction efforts (such as the Marshall Plan), to today’s multinational security partnership programs (such as the joint strike fighter program and international military education and training), the United States has relied upon Foreign Area Officers (FAOs) and U.S. […]

A MODERN APPLICATION OF LANDPOWER IN SYRIA

U.S. involvement in Syria and Iraq from 2014 to the present exemplifies the central role of landpower in a nation’s national security and shifting political objectives. Late on 6 October 2019, a Sunday, the White House ordered American troops to depart from key ground positions in Northern Syria. For almost a year, U.S. forces had […]

TURNKEY ALLIES: ISRAEL BACKING THE SUNNI CAUSE

Ultimately, a positive end for Israel will lead to a dual benefit of strengthened regional security and stronger bonds with the wider Arab world. The current sectarian violence in the Middle East gives credit to some scholars’ belief in a looming war between the Sunni Arab states on one side and Iran and its allies […]

GAMES, PLAY, AND THE AFFECTIVE DOMAIN (WARGAMING ROOM)

What do a hyper-competitive Monopoly player, an educational methodologist and a U.S. Army War College Faculty member have in common? Well for starters they’re all the same person and that combination of skills and interests makes Megan Hennessey the perfect guest on this inaugural WARGAMING ROOM episode of A BETTER PEACE. Megan joins series editor […]

SWARM GAMING: REGAINING THE STRATEGIC INNOVATION INITIATIVE (WARGAMING ROOM)

Adversaries will deliberately create situations for which U.S. military leaders have not been educated, trained, or equipped to overcome. The United States’ enemies are smart, dedicated, and determined. They will not attack strengths; they will attack weaknesses at times and places of their choosing and seek to do so in ways for which the DOD […]