Recommended Reading—Summer 2016

[by J. Scott Shipman]   The Storm of Creativity, by Kyna Leski 2017 War With Russia, by General Sir Richard Shirreff The Wright Brothers, by David McCullough Serendipities, Language and Lunacy, by Umberto Eco Paradise, Dante Alighieri, translated by Mark Musa Undertow, by Stanton S. Coerr The White Horse Cometh, by Rich Parks Washington The Indispensable […] Read more »

New Article at War on the Rocks

I have a new op-ed up this morning on the Crimean crisis over at War on the Rocks: Let’s Slow Roll Any Move Toward Crimean War II: One of the more curious implicit assumptions about the crisis in Ukraine is that the subsequent occupation of the Crimea by Russia represents some kind of triumph for [...] Read more »

Syria is Not Rwanda

Anne-Marie Slaughter had a short but bombastic WaPo op-ed on Syria and chemical weapons use that requires comment: Obama should remember Rwanda as he weighs action in Syria  ….The Clinton administration did not want to acknowledge that genocide was taking place in Rwanda because the United States would have been legally bound by the Genocide Convention of [...] Read more »

Octavian Manea interviews MIT’s Roger D. Peterson

Another installment of Octavian Manea’s excellent COIN interview series at SWJ. This one focuses on social science and varieties of insurgency: Breaking Down “Hearts and Minds”: The Power of Individual Causal Mechanisms in an Insurgency  ….OM: In your research you pointed out to a spectrum of conceivable individual roles in an insurgency. What is the [...] Read more »

The possible unexpected consequences of intervention

[ by Charles Cameron -- wondering whether it can ever be possible to expect the unexpected, and if so, what exactly that might mean? Libya & Mali ] . . Alex Thurston at Sahel Blog: Covering Politics and Religion in the Sahel and the Horn of Africa posted Libya and Mali, Part I today. The [...] Read more »

Two Cheers for the State?

An excellent post from Adam Elkus – strongly recommended! The State Problem In National Security Policy ….The report makes a lot of comments about the rise of individual autonomy, the empowering of regional network-cities, and technology’s acceleration of the power of non-state actors. Wired interpreted part of this as signaling a decline of the state, which has been a popular [...] Read more »

The Russians are Not Coming….Nor are they Going Away

Now that Vladimir Putin has resumed the Presidency of Russia, it merits looking at the defense discussion that appeared under his name in Rossiiskaya Gazeta. Virtually everyone agrees that the condition of the Russian Army is parlous and that Putin’s program of difficult military reform to transform the Russian military from a conscripted army to a [...] Read more »