29 May 2009

Witty Headlines 101

Jason Linkins at the Huffington Post seems to think my intro post should have been titled “How the Army learned to stop worrying and love the blog”. Touche. I’d say the Army still worries, but is gradually changing.

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29 May 2009

The Future of Iraq

Michael Totten has put together a must read post on the future of Iraq after the drawdown. Great summary. Hit the tip jar if you can.

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29 May 2009

What Can Pakistan Learn from the USA?

“Mikeyhemlock” asks in the comments on the SFA post about what the Pakistan army can learn from the US that it doesn’t already know. The basics of “Clear, Hold, Build” strategy of counterinsurgency is one thing. Herschel Smith over at the Captain’s Journal has a good rundown of the failure to employ this time tested technique in the current Pakistani offensive in Swat.

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29 May 2009

CompanyCommand.mil – on the chopping block?

I’ve been a member of the professional forum companycommand.mil (CC) since it was founded in 2000. Majors Nate Allen and Tony Burgess created it a way to share their company command experiences with their peers across the growing internet. Over the years, CC (a restricted access site) became the shining example of how the Army can be as a learning organization, spinning off sub-sites on platoon leadership and family readiness groups. The Army’s Battle Command Knowledge System took its cue from CC’s success, expanding to other disciplines. An entire generation of officers have become better commanders and platoon leaders through the frank discussions on its forums, which cover everything on how to handle discipline issues to training tips for combat. For a great background article on the impact of CC, check out this 2005 New Yorker article.

With potential cuts looming for Training and Doctrine command in personnel and budget, Starbuck over at Wings over Iraq released the following memo sent out to members of the CC forum yesterday.

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28 May 2009

Look at me! Look at me! Look at me now! It’s fun to have fun but you have to know how …

Just to show how the army’s perception of blogging has shifted, because of this guestblogging gig I’m featured front and center on the Combined Arms Center homepage.

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28 May 2009

Understanding Security Force Assistance

My friend and colleague Major Rob Thornton launched an excellent series on understanding the challenges of Security Force Assistance (SFA). For mere mortals, SFA is the current term that encompasses DoD’s efforts to advise and equip foreign security forces. This can include Special Forces teams, embedded advisers, or a range of lethal and non-lethal capability. Rob is a deep thinker for the Joint Center for International Security Force Assistance, a organization headquartered on Fort Leavenworth. Rob spent a tour as an adviser in Mosul and has been working to improve our advisory efforts ever since. If you’re interested in what this SFA thing is all about, check out his four posts so far and the ensuing discussion:

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27 May 2009

Challenging the Way We Think

A couple of weeks ago, I felt the council over at the great Small Wars Journal was in a rut. So I got the wild idea to post a "discussion starter" slide my organization uses on the road. It worked. What I got in response was one of the most

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27 May 2009

Mapping the Fallen

Speaking of Memorial Day, if you haven’t checked out the Map of the Fallen, do so.  It links death location (by city) in Iraq and Afghanistan with the individual’s hometown.  I was privileged to consult with creator and Google employee Sean Askay last week prior to going public during a

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27 May 2009

Up On The Net (finally)

Memorial Day weekend and chaos at the office have conspired to keep my blogging limited until now. I’d like to thank Spencer for the opportunity to guest blog. As he stated, I’ve been working as the operations officer for the US Army and Marine Corps Counterinsurgency Center at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas for the past two years. During that time I’ve witnessed a sea of change in how the Army empowers its soldiers to communicate across the new media.

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