Via Decision 2020
The ninth edition of the Decision 2020 Report highlights Hoover fellows’ research and analysis on the Russian Federation’s history, ideology, and global ambitions. It also covers the Russian economy and the dynamics of US-Russian relations.
by Jakub Grygiel via The American Interest
Putin will leave sooner or—as it seems—later. But a revanchist Russia, shaped by a revitalized Russian Orthodox Church, will outlast him
Yesar Al-Maleki writes: Iraq’s politics are complicated, but its economic prospects are attractive. The U.S. should support the development of an economically strong and politically independent Iraq. It is the sole successful model of America’s presence in the region. The administration’s short-to-medium-term strategy in Iraq will determine whether the U.S. is interested in sustaining a stabilizing role that is beneficial to both nations. Alternatively, there is a risk of throwing away years of involvement by reducing Iraq to a pawn in a larger geopolitical game with Iran, one which will likely have no winners. – Middle East Institute
By Tyler Rogoway, The WarZone: "Exercise Red Flag is underway with the U.S. and some of its tightest allies fighting a mock air war over the Nevada Test and Training Range (NTTR) in southern Nevada. Either in conjunction with the exercise or independent of it, there is a lot of testing currently going on over the same area."
By Steve Trimble, Aviation Week: "A U.S. Navy document that cryptically describes a versatile and powerful new missile likely offers the first confirmation of the hypersonic speed and newly acquired, antisurface-warfare role for the Raytheon SM-6 Block 1B."
U.S. Navy and Special Operations Telegraph Message to Tehran
By Carl Prine, Navy Times: "A joint exercise launched March 8 and 9 in the Persian Gulf involving the Cyclone-class Monsoon and the two aircraft was designed to see how well a surface patrol ship and a long-range spy plane could select targets in the Persian Gulf for a Special Operations Command Central gunship to blast to bits."
U.S. Fighters Catch Russian Spy Planes Near Alaska for 2nd Time in Days
By Hope Hodge Seck, Military.com: “The world is steadily confronting the prospect of full-fledged Chinese domination in the world’s most important waterway, the South China Sea.”
Russia to Lay Down Additional Project 22350 Stealth Frigates
By Franz-Stefan Gady, The Diplomat: "The Severnaya Verf shipyard in St. Petersburg, part of the United Shipbuilding Corporation (USC), will lay down an additional series of Admiral Gorshkov-class Project 22350 guided missile frigates for service in the Russian Navy."
By Walker D. Mills, CIMSEC: “. . . with all the calls for integration, where is the Naval Expeditionary Combat Command (NECC)? After all, the Marine Corps itself is a naval expeditionary force according to the Commandant."
The Moonshot Formula: Rediscovering Innovation in the U.S. Air Force
By Jacob Lokshin, Strategy Bridge: "The United States Air Force is in an arms race. Decades of dominance have allowed the force to slip into complacency, while near-peer adversaries have quietly developed capabilities to contest U.S. power across all domains."
As Assessment of the Concept of Competition as a Foundation to Military Planning
By Jeffrey Alston, Divergent Options: "The U.S. Military is overextending its intellectual resources regarding great power competition and is losing its focus on core warfighting concepts."
By William Donnelly, War Room: “In recent years there has been much discussion about the Army’s refocusing on largescale combat operations, command at the division echelon, and the transformation of the National Guard from a strategic to an operational reserve."
Why We Need Philosophy in PME
By Christopher Wooding, Grounded Curiosity: " Professional military education (PME) underpins the study of the profession of arms within the defence community. It enables the transfer of knowledge, wisdom, and experience within services. Without PME, modern militaries would be failing as professional organisations given their responsibility to promote the development of ‘warrior-scholars.'"
China's Nuclear Arms Are a Riddle Wrapped in a Mystery
By Michael Mazza & Henry Sokolski, Foreign Policy: "Beijing's plans to build new missiles, expand anti-satellite capabilities and increase nuclear material production far above civilian needs have the world guessing.”
“There’s nothing now. Nothing at all,” said Yasser Aboud, as he looked away from his family’s few remaining belongings, dumped on the floor of the bare single room that would now be their home in the northwest Syrian city of Idlib.[…] The city of Idlib is the last urban area still under opposition control in Syria, located in a shrinking rebel enclave in the northwestern province of the same name. – Associated Press
Syrian dictator Bashar Assad is allowing a “disastrous” coronavirus outbreak to fester due to his dependence on stricken Iran to win the long-running civil war, according to local reports and international observers. – Washington Examiner
Turkish and Russian troops began joint patrols Sunday on a key highway in northwestern Syria, Turkey’s Defense Ministry said, while both the Russian government and Syrian opposition activists said the patrols were shortened because of protests. Patrols on the highway known as the M4, which runs east-west through Idlib province, are part of a cease-fire agreement between Turkey and Russia signed earlier this month. – Associated Press
By Franklin Annis, Modern War Institute: “The U.S. Army has had a historic problem in adapting the use of self-development. The concept is misunderstood, our definitions change frequently and often conflict, the graphic display of our leader development model is unclear, we lack practical guidance on how it could be executed, we confuse it with institutional learning, we lack supporting materials, and our leaders often lack the experience to mentor soldiers how to self-develop."
Germany, Wilsonianism, and the Return of Realpolitik
By Dominik Wullers, War on the Rocks: "Until now, President Woodrow Wilson was the American statesman and moralist who implicitly shaped German foreign policy thinking."