... leaders’ failed strategies in several wars, Trump’s team of generals, and the emerging Trump doctrine, which is here termed “strategic savvy”.
1964 Vietnam War; “Lies that Led to Vietnam”
Bullet-headed Lt. General H.R. McMaster, the US National Security Adviser, is not just a brave warrior. Like his mentor, General David Petraeus, he is a prominent military intellectual. Both men wrote their PhD dissertations on the lessons of Vietnam. In The American Military and the Lessons of Vietnam, Petraeus ...
- 23.06.2017 12:33:36
October 1st began what could be one of the more interesting Chairships of the United Nations Security Council, with Russia taking over and being charged with a rather delicate balancing act: between conducting the numerous affairs expected to be covered by any standard Chair of the UNSC and deftly handling the ‘special’ relationship ...
- 26.10.2016 17:14:00
... automatically transferred to him. This is clearly happening today with Trump). This ‘Chamberlain Syndrome’ (Democrat-as-global-appeaser) has existed for quite some time, but it was surely exacerbated by 9/11 and the new emphasis on national security. It was a major part of the lead-up to the 2004 election, when some analysts warned, ‘if Democrats are to have any hope of returning to power in 2004, or even of running competitively and keeping the U.S. two-party system healthy and balanced ...
- 30.06.2016 20:53:00
Media outlets and government circles both cringe and squirm when the subject of Westerners leaving the West to go fight in Syria and Iraq with the Islamic State arises. While acquiring data and calculating accurate numbers wildly diverges from source to source, there is no doubt that ANY number simply makes countries like the United States uncomfortable and perplexed: in short, how could anyone want to leave the land of the free, the tolerant, the open, the just and go fight for a group that represents...
- 18.04.2015 17:10:00
... Pakistan considered itself an ally to the U.S., fighting the same fight and challenging the same enemies as America, but was deemed unworthy of having the same advanced weapons. How does any country not feel that the U.S. is purposely compromising its own security and risking the lives of its people? Indeed, less than a year after the announcement of the China-Pakistan deal, the chief of Pakistan’s military proudly announced the deployment of the Burraq and Shahpar, the country’s first domestically ...
- 05.04.2015 07:42:00
There is no stronger example of the schizophrenic nature of American foreign policy toward Russia than comparing statements written in the formal National Security Strategy (NSS) of President Obama with actual testimony given by the Director of National Intelligence James Clapper. In 2010 the NSS asserted that the U.S. would endeavor to ‘build a stable, substantive, multidimensional relationship with ...
- 23.02.2015 20:59:00
There is a decided chicken-and-egg quality when trying to unravel Russian-American relations. The general pessimism and pejorative characterizations that come from the U.S. Congress clearly have a negative influence on Putin’s strident bravado and dismissive arrogance to the United States. What is perplexing is how this dilemma, which implies that it is difficult to figure out which truly came first, never seems to be an actual problem for American politicians: the Russian ‘corrupt and...
- 14.02.2015 21:08:00
... Republican mindset.
That mindset sets a fairly stark characterization: Russia is an aggressive and untrustworthy dictatorship that is an innate contradiction to American values. As such it will inevitably always be a threat to U.S. interests and global security. By all indicators, Russia is a threat not just to itself and its immediate neighbors but to the entire world, masking its own domestic failings and instabilities with an aggressive foreign policy that will never acquiesce to a more peaceful ...
- 07.02.2015 00:55:00
... dangerously myopic and unhealthy to base its own foreign policy on earning the ‘approval’ of another country. With ease the far more standard approach to foreign policy formulation is to determine a country’s own national interests and security dilemma and craft an independent position that can best achieve optimal goals for said country.
And that, not ironically, is what is being described above in America as a ‘shift’ away from craving attention to striving to exorcise ...
- 03.02.2015 00:20:00
The events in Paris are unfortunately all too familiar in the 21st century. I think in some corners it is still perhaps a bit shocking that events like the storming of Charlie Hebdo and the killing of civilians do not actually take place more often than they do. In my line of work, this is the foundational conundrum of secret success: intelligence communities around the world actually do a stellar job of ferreting out literally hundreds, if not thousands of ideas, intentions, and full-on strategic...
- 18.01.2015 18:34:00
... foreign-policy, intelligence, and global political layers of this decision, however, you don’t find a country in trouble or even incompetent. Rather, you find a cunning sense of strategic analysis that is built more upon long-term economic and national security priorities, which is an approach that woefully few Western countries ever find themselves in a position to emulate.
First, let’s break down the simple economic numbers: the budget for next year sees spending at roughly 230 billion USD ...
- 06.01.2015 19:02:00
On December 18 President Vladimir Putin gave his traditional end-of-year holiday speech. Think of it as a Russian version of the American State-of-the-Union address always given by our President. In it Putin expressed dismay and concern at the manner in which Russia’s “Western partners” were behaving, even going so far as to declare Western intentions as being purposely aimed at controlling Russian national resources and leaving Russia a de facto vassal state. He vividly used the...
- 22.12.2014 22:41:00
So the United States Senate has released its report highlighting extreme and supposedly ‘abhorrent’ techniques used on terrorist targets after 9/11 to glean greater intelligence and information. Since that release there has been an orgy of oscillating condemnation/hand-wringing with rationalization/chest-beating, depending on whom you speak with. What strikes me more is the whole surreal ridiculousness of this false debate.
I say false debate because in some ways this just highlights...
- 15.12.2014 18:04:00
... mentioned above are quintessentially academic and best taught by terminally-degreed, full-time faculty dedicated to promoting them.
The even bigger danger: as more schools have tried to develop degree programs focused on intelligence and national security, they have followed the military-friendly school model, poaching retired IC professionals to fill their programs with adjunct, part-time faculty without surrounding them in an academic setting. This dominance by practitioners-as-teachers has ...
- 08.12.2014 06:59:00
... and therefore radically different conclusions about how we view and evaluate said communities. Below is a ‘case glance’ of the phenomenon utilizing the Russian Federation. Perhaps most interesting and fairly unexpected is how in terms of security affairs American understanding about Russia seems to be hurt more analytically by grand strategic culture and is often never analyzed from a perspective that emphasizes contemporary reality, purpose-based objectives and actual organizational ...
- 26.11.2014 18:37:00
... impact on thinking about other intelligence communities, especially non-Western ones. This restriction brings about unintentional cognitive closure that damages intelligence analysis. My argument leans heavily in many ways on the fine work of Desch in Security Studies, who cogently brought to light over fifteen years ago how ultra-popular cultural theories were best utilized as supplements to traditional realist approaches and were not in fact capable of supplanting or replacing realist explanations ...
- 27.10.2014 01:40:00
... juggernaut overnight. As soon as developing states began to realize just how difficult steady, progressive, rational growth would be, they began finding ways to shortcut the journey. Soft spying became arguably the chief method in this new national security priority of economic development. Spy movies notwithstanding, the traditional methods of economic espionage truly read like a primer from Ian Fleming: planting moles and/or recruiting inside agents; surveillance; clandestine entry; bag drops ...
- 22.09.2014 04:36:00
... accommodate targeted killing as the best modern solution to this new threat that had become so powerful, unforeseeable, and undefined. The U.S. has a diplomatic habit of positioning its interests as something higher than pure foreign-policy and national security priorities. In so doing, it creates a de facto expectation whereby it has exclusive rights to exceptional behavior on the global stage. The obvious risk with such diplomatic calisthenics is that most other countries do not grant such exclusivity ...
- 16.09.2014 06:44:00
... Worse still is how incredibly infantile and cruel this line of argument is from NATO: there is no chance, NONE, that Ukraine will be invited to join the group. While Obama says officially to the microphones that all options will remain open for global security and peace, France and Germany are both formally opposed to offering membership to Ukraine. As long as that is the case, Obama’s comments are just empty gestures, more cruelty to Ukraine than deterrent to Russia. Does anyone in their right ...
- 09.09.2014 18:04:00
Imagine you are on a gameshow, and are asked the following question: in which year did the Russian language internet -- commonly known as Runet-- begin? The answer, you could assume, is 1990, with the creation of Relcom. Unless its 1983, that is, with the San Francisco Moscow Teleport. Which would mean you aren’t accepting the 1972 Express automated data network. In which case, you would also be ignoring the argument that really it’s simultaneously in 1835 and 4338.
These last dates...
- 02.09.2014 15:07:00