SSI

Publications

Michael J. Dziedzic for Leonard R. Hawley (posthumously) – “Crisis Management Lessons from the Clinton Administration’s Implementation of Presidential Decision Directive 56”

Released 12 October, 2021. PROLOGUE: In the wake of the Battle of Mogadishu, Somalia, on October 3-4, 1993, in which 19 American servicemembers were killed and 73 injured, I was tasked to lead an effort to discern the strategic lessons to be learned from the ill-fated US intervention. The study highlighted several shortfalls: the absence …

Michael J. Dziedzic for Leonard R. Hawley (posthumously) – “Crisis Management Lessons from the Clinton Administration’s Implementation of Presidential Decision Directive 56” Read More »

Col. Everett Spain, Dr. Gautam Mukunda, and Col. Archie Bates – “The Battalion Commander Effect”

Released 7 October, 2021. Statistical evidence suggests that Army battalion commanders are significant determinants of the retention of their lieutenants—especially high-potential lieutenants. Further, this so-called Battalion Commander Effect should be included in brigadier general promotion board assessments and used to inform officer professional military education curricula. Click here to read the article.

Col. Wade A. Germann and Dr. Heather S. Gregg – Assessing Risk at the National Strategic Level: Visualization Tools for Military Planners

Released 6 October, 2021. The reemergence of great power competition, conflict with near-peer competitor states below the level of armed conflict, and persisting threats from nonstate actors with transnational ambitions and global reach pose challenges for strategists planning, executing, and assessing military operations and strategy. Building on current visualization tools, two proposed models—the National Strategic …

Col. Wade A. Germann and Dr. Heather S. Gregg – Assessing Risk at the National Strategic Level: Visualization Tools for Military Planners Read More »

Michael W. Wissemann – Great (Soft) Power Competition: US and Chinese Efforts in Global Health Engagement

Decisive Point podcast cover art

Released 1 October, 2021. Global health engagement, an underutilized strategy rooted in the strengths of soft power persuasion, can lead to more military-to-military cooperation training, help establish relationships that can be relied on when crises develop, stabilize fragile states, and deny violent extremist organizations space for recruiting and operations. Examining Chinese efforts worldwide to curry …

Michael W. Wissemann – Great (Soft) Power Competition: US and Chinese Efforts in Global Health Engagement Read More »

Dr. Ilmari Käihkö – “The Evolution of Hybrid Warfare: Implications for Strategy and the Military Profession”

Released 29 September 2021. The concept of hybrid war has evolved from operational-level use of military means and methods in war toward strategic-level use of nonmilitary means in a gray zone below the threshold of war. This article considers this evolution and its implications for strategy and the military profession by contrasting past and current …

Dr. Ilmari Käihkö – “The Evolution of Hybrid Warfare: Implications for Strategy and the Military Profession” Read More »

Dr. Jason W. Warren and Dr. John A. Bonin – “Reversing the Readiness Assumption: A Proposal for Fiscal and Military Fitness”

Released 27 September 2021. Looming budget cuts will necessitate adept management to retain a military capable of competing and winning by avoiding the mistakes made in prior drawdowns. This article presents a framework for government and defense leaders to prepare for the coming drawdown and plan for the necessary capacity of tomorrow across the diplomatic, …

Dr. Jason W. Warren and Dr. John A. Bonin – “Reversing the Readiness Assumption: A Proposal for Fiscal and Military Fitness” Read More »

Blind or Confused: The Impact of 9/11 and Its Aftermath on Risk | Freier

Blind or Confused:The Impact of 9/11 and Its Aftermath on Risk September 22, 2021 | Professor Nathan Freier STRATEGY WITHOUT RISK IS NOT STRATEGY In a defense and military security context, the United States has at times been “risk-blind” and, at others, “risk-confused” over the last two decades.1 These conditions likely predate the 9/11 attacks. But …

Blind or Confused: The Impact of 9/11 and Its Aftermath on Risk | Freier Read More »

Dr. Brian McAllister Linn – “Samuel Huntington, Professionalism, and Self-Policing in the US Army Officer Corps”

Released 21 September 2021. Drawing on Samuel P. Huntington’s three phases of self-regulation used to determine if an occupation qualifies as a profession, this article focuses on the third phase of policing and removing those who fail to uphold the standards set forth in the first two phases. It reviews how the Army implemented this …

Dr. Brian McAllister Linn – “Samuel Huntington, Professionalism, and Self-Policing in the US Army Officer Corps” Read More »

Dr. Matthew Valasik and Dr. Shannon E. Reid – “The Alt-Right Movement and National Security”

Released 16 September 2021. Identifying the January 6 insurrection at the US Capitol as an inflection point, this article analyzes the historical relationship between White supremacy and the US military from Reconstruction after the Civil War to the present. The article posits causes for the disproportionate number of current and former members of the military …

Dr. Matthew Valasik and Dr. Shannon E. Reid – “The Alt-Right Movement and National Security” Read More »

Gregory Aftandilian – “Hope versus Reality: The Efficacy of Using US Military Aid to Improve Human Rights in Egypt”

Released 16 September 2021. Using US military aid as a lever to achieve human rights reforms has proven only marginally effective. This article examines the approaches employed by the Obama and Trump administrations to US military aid to Egypt and proposes practical steps that can be taken by policymakers and the military personnel on the …

Gregory Aftandilian – “Hope versus Reality: The Efficacy of Using US Military Aid to Improve Human Rights in Egypt” Read More »

Twenty Years after 9/11: The US Army at a Crossroads | Shatzer

Twenty Years after 9/11: The US Army at a Crossroads September 9, 2021   |  Colonel George Shatzer No retrospective on the September 11 attacks can escape the bleak pall cast by the tragic events unfolding in Afghanistan today. Despite the enormous financial investment in the country and the grim human costs borne by the United …

Twenty Years after 9/11: The US Army at a Crossroads | Shatzer Read More »

The Best-Laid Plans Upended | Deni

The Best-Laid Plans Upended August 27, 2021  |  Dr. John R. Deni The American national security establishment is shifting from nation building to addressing the challenge of rising great powers, from a near obsession with the United States Central Command geographic area of responsibility to an emphasis on the Indo-Asia-Pacific region. Sound familiar? This shift …

The Best-Laid Plans Upended | Deni Read More »

9/11 and the Ethics of Fear: Maintaining the High Ground in the Face of Uncertainty | Pfaff

9/11 and the Ethics of Fear:Maintaining the High Ground in the Face of Uncertainty August 30, 2021  |  Dr. C. Anthony Pfaff INTRODUCTION The coordinated terrorist attacks on 9/11 took the lives of almost 3,000 people, destroyed $55 billion worth of infrastructure, and caused $123 billion in other economic impact.1 Perhaps just as tragically, the …

9/11 and the Ethics of Fear: Maintaining the High Ground in the Face of Uncertainty | Pfaff Read More »

Twenty Years after 9/11: Implications for US Policy in the Middle East | Bolan

Twenty Years after 9/11: Implications for US Policy in the Middle East August 31, 2021  |  Dr. Christopher J. Bolan The September 11 attacks represented a major strategic shock to US foreign policy in the Middle East. Whereas much of US foreign policy during the Cold War understandably focused on the global threats posed by …

Twenty Years after 9/11: Implications for US Policy in the Middle East | Bolan Read More »

“Never Forget”: 9/11 Then and Now—Thoughts on Readiness | Lohmann

“Never Forget”: 9/11 Then and Now—Thoughts on Readiness August 31, 2021  |  Dr. Sarah Lohmann On the morning of September 11, 2001, I stopped by the post office on my way to the newsroom of the Washington, DC–based newspaper where I worked as an editorial writer. I wanted to mail a postcard of the World …

“Never Forget”: 9/11 Then and Now—Thoughts on Readiness | Lohmann Read More »

“Après Nous, le Déluge” | Mason

“Après Nous, le Déluge”​ August 31, 2021 | Dr. Chris M. Mason The Taliban have retaken control of Afghanistan. The quixotic, United States-led, 20-year nation-building project in Afghanistan is over. “I . . . don’t think anyone thought Afghanistan would turn so badly so quick,” a US official is quoted as saying recently.1 If that …

“Après Nous, le Déluge” | Mason Read More »

9/11 and the Army Reserve: The Strategic Shift | Lawrence

9/11 and the Army Reserve: The Strategic Shift August 31, 2021 | Colonel Matthew W. Lawrence The 9/11 attacks’ effects on the United States and its foreign policies cannot be understated. The United States, in essence, lost its innocence that day and has never been the same. The attacks spurred changes in the way the …

9/11 and the Army Reserve: The Strategic Shift | Lawrence Read More »

9/11, Latin America, and the Impermanence of Strategic Concepts | Ellis

9/11, Latin America, and theImpermanence of Strategic Concepts September 7, 2021  |  Dr. R. Evan Ellis On September 11, 2001, then US President George W. Bush had just completed a historic summit with his Mexican counterpart, Vicente Fox, the week prior. The interaction built on the “special friendship” between the two nations and the intertwined …

9/11, Latin America, and the Impermanence of Strategic Concepts | Ellis Read More »

9/11, Post-Primacy, and Defense Strategy Development | Freier

9/11, Post-Primacy, andDefense Strategy Development September 7, 2021   |   Professor Nathan Freier INTRODUCTION: LAST FEW HOURS OF UNRIVALED PRIMACY September 2001 was Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR) and Defense Planning Guidance (DPG) season in the Pentagon. The QDR was the Bush-Rumsfeld DoD’s first crack at publicly reshaping the post–Cold War military.1 The DPG was the classified …

9/11, Post-Primacy, and Defense Strategy Development | Freier Read More »

The Lessons of 9/11 for Defense Planning | Cliff

The Lessons of 9/11 for Defense Planning September 8, 2021  |  Dr. Roger Cliff On the morning of September 11, 2001, I was working at the Pentagon in the office of the deputy assistant secretary of defense for strategy. The DoD was preparing to issue a report documenting the findings of the 2001 Quadrennial Defense …

The Lessons of 9/11 for Defense Planning | Cliff Read More »