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New Publications
Dealing with Political Ferment in Latin America: The Populist Revival, The Emergence of the Center, and Implications for US Policy by Dr. Hal Brands. Frustration with poverty, corruption, and citizen insecurity within the political scene in Latin America is widespread as is political and ideological ferment. Given Latin America's strategic importance to the United States, these changes and their diplomatic ramifications are of considerable interest to American policymakers.

A "New" Dynamic in the Western Hemisphere Security Environment: The Mexican Zetas and Other Private Armies by Dr. Max G. Manwaring. A new and dangerous dynamic has been introduced into the Mexican internal security environment. That new dynamic is represented by a private military organization called the Zetas, and involves the migration of power from traditional state and nonstate adversaries to nontraditional nonstate private military organizations. Moreover, the actions of this irregular nonstate actor tend to be more political-psychological than military, and further move the threat from hard power to soft power solutions.

The Army's Professional Military Ethic in an Era of Persistent Conflict by Dr. Don M. Snider, Major Paul Oh, Major Kevin Toner. As the character of conflict in the 21st century evolves, the Army's strength will continue to rest on our values, our ethos, and our people. Our Soldiers and leaders must remain true to these values as they operate in increasingly complex environments where moral-ethical failures can have strategic implications.

Guide to Rebuilding Public Sector Services in Stability Operations: A Role for the Military? by Derick W. Brinkerhoff, Ronald W. Johnson, Richard Hill. Edited by Professor Susan Merrill. The authors provide a set of principles and operational guidelines for peacekeepers to help a country restore public infrastructure and services. The extent to which public sector reconstruction takes place is a function of the mission, the level of resources, expertise of the troops, and the host country context. This guide provides courses of action to both planners and practitioners in executing these operations and supplements existing and emerging documents.

A Comprehensive Approach to Improving U.S. Security Force Assistance Efforts by Lieutenant Colonel Theresa Baginski, Colonel Brian J. Clark, Lieutenant Colonel Francis Donovan, Ms. Karma Job, Lieutenant Colonel John S. Kolasheski, Colonel Richard A. Lacquement, Jr., Brigadier Simon "Don" Roach, Colonel Sean P. Swindell, Colonel Curt A. Van De Walle, Colonel Michael J. McMahon. Security Force Assistance may be a new term but the activities are familiar and are related to how the Department of Defense trains, advises, and assists foreign partners' security establishments to accomplish common objectives. Recommendations to improve U.S. performance are provided.

Coming Soon
You Tube War: Fighting in a World of Cameras in Every Cell Phone and Photoshop on Every Computer, by Dr. Cori Dauber

A Case Study in Security Reform: Learning from Security Sector Reform/Building in Afghanistan (October 2002- September 2003), by Jason C. Howk

Schools for Strategy: Teaching Strategy for 21st Century Conflict, by Colin Gray

India's Strategic Defense Transformation: Expanding Global Relationships, by Brian K. Hedrick

Talent: Implications for a U.S. Army Officer Corps Strategy, by COL Casey Wardynski, MAJ David S. Lyle, and Mr. Michael J. Colarusso

 
Monthly Op-Ed
War's Second Grammar
by Dr. Antulio J. Echevarria, II

The Afghanistan Strategy
Quick reference to more recent SSI studies about the strategy for Afghanistan.

Challenges and Opportunities for the Obama Administration in Central Asia by Dr. Stephen J. Blank

U.S. Interests in Central Asia and the Challenges to Them by Dr. Stephen J. Blank

Provincial Reconstruction Teams: How Do We Know They Work? by Dr. Carter Malkasian, Dr. Gerald Meyerle

Russia, China, and the United States in Central Asia: Prospects for Great Power Competition and Cooperation in the Shadow of the Georgian Crisis by Dr. Elizabeth Wishnick

Overcoming the Obstacles to Establishing a Democratic State in Afghanistan by Colonel Dennis O. Young

Events
Virtual Conference: The Future of the U.S. Army Officer Corps - Officer Strategy
The Vice Chief of Staff of the Army needs you in the discussion on developing an officer corps strategy.
October 5-November 8, 2009

Drug Trafficking, Violence and Instability in Mexico, Colombia, and the Caribbean: Implications for US National Security
October 29-30, Pittsburgh, PA

Two-level Rivalries in Asia
November 20-21, 2009, Bloomington, Indiana

Annual Strategy Conference:
Defining War for the 21st Century
April 6-8, 2010, Carlisle, PA
Mark your calendars

Post-Event Videos Now on iTunes:
Leadership and Government Reform (iTunes link)
This event took place on June 24, 2009 in Washington, DC. See the event's website for the agenda and speakers.

News and Updates
On September 11, Dr. Steven Metz gave a presentation entitled "Irregular Warfare as Conventional Warfare," at the National Defense University's "Beyond the Horizons" Conference in Washington, DC. On September 16, Dr. Metz gave a presentation entitled "The Evolution of Insurgency" at the Naval War College conference, "Irregular Warfare," Newport, RI.

On September 25-27, the 2009 People's Liberation Army (PLA) conference took place at the Army War College. This year's theme was "The PLA at Home and Abroad: Assessing the Operational Capabilities of China's Military." Admiral (Ret.) Dennis Blair, Director of National Intelligence was keynote speaker. The co-hosts of the conference were the Army War College Strategic Studies Institute, the National Bureau of Asian Research, and the Bush School of Government and Public Service of Texas A&M University. About 70 China security analysts attended the two-day conference. Proceedings from last year's PLA conference are available in the SSI published compendium, Beyond the Strait: PLA Missions other than Taiwan.

On October 1, a five-member Dutch delegation visited SSI to exchange views with SSI experts on the rise of China and its regional and global significance. They met with Prof. Douglas Lovelace, Director of SSI and Dr. David Lai, SSI China specialist. The Dutch delegation members were from the Dutch Defense and Foreign ministries.

The views expressed in this newsletter are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the Department of the Army, the Department of Defense, or the U.S. Government. This newsletter is cleared for public release; distribution is unlimited.

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External Link Policy • Last Modified: October 2, 2009