ELLUL’S “PROPAGANDA”: OVER FIFTY YEARS’ WARNING, BUT ARE WE LISTENING? (DUSTY SHELVES)

Western nations have again become concerned about propaganda and disinformation due to the actions of the Chinese and Russian governments. An overlooked classic of information warfare/operations, disinformation, and fake news is Jacques Ellul’s Propaganda: The Formation of Men’s Attitudes (1965). Jacques Ellul was a French sociologist and philosopher who served as professor at the University […]

THE MILITARY AND THE MEDIA: A MATCH MADE IN…NECESSITY?

The general public often assumes a great deal about the relationship between the media and the military. This topic has been in the news a lot in 2019, with both military personnel and journalists separately weighing in. During academic year ’19 one elective specifically asked its students: What is the state of the military’s relationship […]

RELATIONSHIPS MATTER: DON’T BE A TURKEY

U.S. organizations that engage in relationship-building efforts with other nations … provide major advantages in advancing U.S. interests across the globe. While dining with an Eastern European officer in his capital some years ago, I listened to him tell of an Iraq deployment he was on for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). It happened […]

POLICY SUCCESS VS. INTEL FAILURE?

Failure is not just the result of one part of the equation. [Sometimes] you can give the right piece of intelligence and they won’t act on it. What does it take to be a successful intelligence officer or civilian? Or perhaps, what negative traits indicate the likelihood of failure? In this second episode in the […]

FORMING U.S. AFRICA COMMAND: A STRATEGIC COMMUNICATION SUCCESS — AFRICOM AT 10 YEARS (PART 1)

Success stories [IN STRATEGIC COMMUNICATION] do exist. The formation of the U.S. Army’s African Command (AFRICOM) was … a case of turning the communication environment from open hostility to general favorability in two short years. It is very easy to bash the U.S. government and the U.S. military for strategic communication failures. From bad messaging […]