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How Everything Became War and the Military Became Everything: Tales from the Pentagon Everything Became War and the Military Became Everything: Tales from the Pentagon2018-10-01T16:00:00Z,<div class="ExternalClass06C216D692464062A2BEEE4B06BCC7F7"><h1><img src="/library/defense-atl/DATLFiles/Professional%20Reading%20Program/howeverthing.jpg" style="margin-left:4px;margin-right:4px;float:left;" />How Everything Became War and the Military Became Everything: Tales from the Pentagon</h1> <strong>Author: </strong>Rosa Brooks<br> <strong>Publisher: </strong>Simon and Schuster<br> <strong>Copyright Date:</strong> 2016<br> <strong>Available Online:</strong> <a href=""></a><br> <strong>Hard/Softcover/Digital: </strong>Hardcover, 448 pages<br> <strong>ISBN-10: </strong>1476777861<br> <strong>ISBN-13:</strong> 978-1476777863<br> <strong>DOI:</strong> <a href=""> </a><br> <strong>Reviewed by:</strong> Dr. Trevor Taylor, Professorial Fellow in Defence Management, Royal United Service Institute (RUSI) <hr /> <h1><br> Summary</h1> Once, war was a temporary state of affairs. Today, America’s wars are everywhere and forever: our enemies change constantly and rarely wear uniforms, and virtually anything can become a weapon. As war expands, so does the role of the US military. Military personnel now analyze computer code, train Afghan judges, build Ebola isolation wards, eavesdrop on electronic communications, develop soap operas, and patrol for pirates. You name it, the military does it.<br> <br> In this “ambitious and astute” (<i>The Washington Post</i>) work, Rosa Brooks “provides a masterful analysis” (<i>San Francisco Chronicle</i>) of this seismic shift in how America wages war from an unconventional perspective—that of a former top Pentagon official who is the daughter of two anti-war protesters and married to an Army Green Beret. By turns a memoir, a work of journalism, a scholarly exploration of history, anthropology, and law, <i>How Everything Became War and the Military Became Everything</i> is an “illuminating” (<i>The New York Times</i>), “eloquent” (<i>The Boston Globe</i>), “courageous” (<i>US News & World Report</i>), and “essential” (<i>The Dallas Morning News</i>) examination of the role of the military today. Above all, it is a rallying cry, for Brooks issues an urgent warning: When the boundaries around war disappear, we undermine both America’s founding values and the international rules and organizations that keep our world from sliding towards chaos. <hr /> <h1>Review</h1> <hr />This book’s central concern is the changing nature of violent conflict and the future of law as a moderating and constraining influence. It makes clear that currently law is not keeping up. The author’s background is that of an academic lawyer who has spent considerable time in the developing world in a private capacity, and who also served for a short but meaningful period in the Pentagon during the administration of former U.S. President Barack Obama. Her range of knowledge and experience is brought to bear and apparent through the work. Her exploration of the historical and cultural approaches to the phenomenon of war and of the development of professional militaries helps to put today’s world into a meaningful context. The book’s analysis recognises the complexity of modern life: it makes clear that the 9/11 attacks were not an “armed attack” in the traditional sense of the use of force by a foreign military, “but if the wilful killing of thousands in an attack originating abroad wasn’t an ‘armed attack,’ what was it?” (p. 250).<br> <br> Similarly, when discussing the responsibility of a government to protect its own population, she observes that “it’s not clear how an intervention intended to protect civilians from predation from their own government could avoid morphing into regime change in the face of continuing attacks on civilians” (p. 247). When she looks at the United States, she draws attention to the use of the term “war” in political discourse and with specific focus on the phrase “war on terror.” She says that because such a struggle can never be won in a traditional sense, it is used to justify many actions that are not transparent or accountable such as the execution of specific individuals who have not been dealt with through a judicial process. These matters are addressed not just in principle, but also through detailed examples and the author’s personal experience, including a visit to Guantanamo Bay. Brooks asserts that congressional powers have been eroded by the campaigns in Iraq and Afghanistan, and that the executive, under both Presidents George W. Bush and Obama, exceeded the powers granted in the 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force legislation. Another topic, referred to in the second part of the book’s title, is about how the U.S. Army has evolved, through its counterinsurgency and stabilisation roles, into a body concerned with more than the threat and use of lethal force. When she asked U.S. soldiers how they had spent their recent deployments, most had “supervised the building of wells, sewers, and bridges, helped resolve community disputes, patrolled territory, worked with the local police, analysed intelligence data, [and] engaged in cyber operations” (pp. 326 Defense ARJ, October 2018, Vol. 25 No. 3 : 324–326 Defense ARJ, October 2018, Vol. 25 No. 3 : 324–326 327 A Publication of the Defense Acquisition University October 2018 259–60). While she is not optimistic about the U.S.<br> <br> Army’s international engagement programmes, the book brings out well how this expansion of the U.S. Army’s agenda has, among other things, sparked resentment in the State Department and the Agency for International Development, which tend to become swamped when the Department of Defense shows up. The book’s limitations are first, its somewhat cursory treatment of the role of contractors in the support of U.S. operations. Second, some will find its final chapter of recommendations to be strong on exhortation, but weaker on detail and application, with its stress on the need to see war and peace on a continuum rather than as a binary and its assertion that some form of war is the norm not the exception in human history. However, she is surely right to regret that discussions in Washington about war are dominated by legal issues, and that what is not prohibited is allowed. However, in real life, policy and morality matter, and “you have to argue about right and wrong, good and evil, fear and hope, cruelty and compassion. Few lawyers are good at that sort of conversation, but it’s a conversation we need to have” (p. 363). Every so often a reader is lucky to encounter a book that ticks a series of boxes: it deals with important issues in international relations and national security governance and management; is clear and easy to read; presents evidence in an authoritative manner; and is both provocative and persuasive. Brooks has written such a work, but which senior member of the current U.S. administration will read it? <hr />Note: This review was first published in the <em>RUSI Journal</em>, 162(6), December 2017. It is reprinted here with the permission of the author, RUSI Journal, and Taylor & Francis Group. <hr /><strong>Multimedia:</strong><br> <iframe frameborder="0" height="315" src="" width="560"></iframe><iframe frameborder="0" height="315" src="" width="560"></iframe><iframe frameborder="0" height="315" src="" width="560"></iframe><iframe frameborder="0" height="315" src="" width="560"></iframe> <hr />To print a PDF copy of this review, <a href="/library/defense-atl/DATLFiles/Professional%20Reading%20Program/ARJ86%20Book%20Review.pdf">click here.</a></div>string;#/library/professional-reading-program/blog/How-Everything-Became-War-and-the-Military-Became-Everything--Tales-from-the-Pentagon
America Inc.?: Innovation and Enterprise in the National Security State Inc.?: Innovation and Enterprise in the National Security State2018-10-01T16:00:00Z<div class="ExternalClass7A6FCB91112648B0A13249C86BE19892"><img alt="first-90-days-thumb" src="/library/defense-atl/DATLFiles/Professional%20Reading%20Program/AmericaInc.jpg" style="margin-left:3px;margin-right:3px;float:left;width:133px;height:200px;" /> <h3 id="title">America Inc.? Innovation and Enterprise in the National Security State</h3> <p><strong>Author(s): </strong>Linda Weiss<br> <strong>Publisher:</strong> Cornell University Press; 1 edition (April 1, 2014)<br> <strong>Copyright Date:</strong> 2014<br> <strong>ISBN-13:</strong> 978-0801479304<br> <strong>ISBN-10:</strong> 0801479304<br> <strong>Hard/Softcover:</strong> 277 pages<br> <strong>Reviewed by: </strong>Mr. Michael McMahon, Adjunct Faculty, School of Continuing Studies, Georgetown University</p> <hr /> <h3>Summary</h3> <p>For more than half a century, the United States has led the world in developing major technologies that drive the modern economy and underpin its prosperity. In <em>America, Inc.</em>, Linda Weiss attributes the U.S. capacity for transformative innovation to the strength of its national security state, a complex of agencies, programs, and hybrid arrangements that has developed around the institution of permanent defense preparedness and the pursuit of technological supremacy. She examines how that complex emerged and how it has evolved in response to changing geopolitical threats and domestic political constraints, from the Cold War period to the post-9/11 era.</p> <p>Weiss focuses on state-funded venture capital funds, new forms of technology procurement by defense and security-related agencies, and innovation in robotics, nanotechnology, and renewable energy since the 1980s. Weiss argues that the national security state has been the crucible for breakthrough innovations, a catalyst for entrepreneurship and the formation of new firms, and a collaborative network coordinator for private-sector initiatives. Her book appraises persistent myths about the military-commercial relationship at the core of the National Security State. Weiss also discusses the implications for understanding U.S. capitalism, the American state, and the future of American primacy as financialized corporations curtail investment in manufacturing and innovation.</p> <hr /> <h3>Review</h3> America Inc.? offers a well-documented and researched challenge to those who take great confidence in the role of private enterprise and limited government as the foundation stones for U.S. technological dominance from the post-Cold War period to the Post-9/11 era.<br> <br> Australian academic Linda Weiss sets forth to identify and describe the critical players and relationships responsible for ensuring America’s technological superiority for both national security and commercial purposes. In the process, she aims to debunk several mythologies surrounding the roles of the public and private sectors in the U.S. economy.<br> <br> Weiss starts by identifying a National Security State (NSS)—an apparatus much more expansive than the usual suspects in defense (law enforcement and intelligence)—as the driving impetus behind U.S. technological innovation. The NSS is not an authoritarian enterprise, but rather a technology enterprise geared toward building and maintaining technological supremacy over geopolitical rivals such as the Soviet Union and commercial competitors such as Japan. Chapters focus on the specific means and methods by which her conceptualized NSS guides U.S. industry to specific technological outcomes. In keeping with the traditional American ethos of private enterprise and a limited government role in the national economy, the NSS inclines towards hybrid mechanisms such as venture capital investments, licensing, and new institutional arrangements that move state-funded innovations to market.<br> <br> One of the popular myths that Weiss targets is the “serendipity argument” that government-funded research and development produces spin-off applications suitable for commercial markets. To the contrary, Weiss argues “spin-around”— that the NSS often looks first toward the commercial sustainability of innovative products so that government agencies can procure successful commercial-offthe-shelf technology afterwards.<br> <br> After an exhaustive litany of case studies and examples, readers are left with the United States as a unique model of hybrid capitalism, whereby U.S. government agencies are in fact highly entwined in the commercial sector in order to build and maintain high-tech dominance. The various categories and models of public-private partnership presented by Weiss are a credit to her substantial research and analysis; they are quite informative and help give order to an otherwise seemingly endless array of federal agency initiatives and programs.<br> <br> Her final conclusions—especially the myth-debunking narratives—run the risk of being somewhat overstated, and may prove less illuminating for serious students of the field. Though Weiss clearly has the true believers of free-market capitalism in her sights, her substantial scholarship chronicling U.S. technological dominance from the post-Cold War period to the Post-9/11 era renders America, Inc.? well suited for academic study. <hr /> <h3>Multimedia</h3> <iframe frameborder="0" height="315" src="" width="560"></iframe> <hr />To print a PDF copy of this article, <a href="/library/defense-atl/DATLFiles/Professional%20Reading%20Program/ARJ84%20Reading%20List.pdf">click here</a>.</div>string;#/library/professional-reading-program/blog/America-Inc---Innovation-and-Enterprise-in-the-National-Security-State-
Rearming for the Cold War, 1945-1960 for the Cold War, 1945-19602018-07-16T04:00:00Z,<div class="ExternalClassF3E3DE8594334157B4F13D30A69F4EF1"><img alt="rearming-the-cold-war-book" src="" style="margin-right:4px;margin-left:4px;float:left;" /> <header> <h1>Rearming for the Cold War, 1945-1960</h1> </header> <p><strong>Author(s):</strong> Elliott V. Converse III</p> <p><strong>Publisher:</strong> Historical Office, Office of the Secretary of Defense</p> <p><strong>Copyright Date:</strong> 2012</p> <p><strong>Available Online:</strong> <a href=""></a></p> <p><strong>Hard/Softcover:</strong> Hardcover, 781 pages</p> <p><strong>Reviewed by:</strong> Dr. Roy Wood, Dean, Defense Systems Management College, DAU</p> <hr /> <header> <h1>Summary</h1> </header> <p>The first publication in a multivolume series on the history of the acquisition of major weapon systems by the Department of Defense, author Elliott Converse presents a meticulously researched overview of changes in acquisition policies, organizations, and processes within the United States military establishment during the decade and a half following World War II. Many of the changes that shaped the nature and course of weapons research and development, production, and contracting through the end of the century were instituted between 1945 and 1960; many of the problems that have repeatedly challenged defense policymakers and acquisition professionals also first surfaced during these years. This study is the first to combine the histories of the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) and the military services into one account. The volume is organized chronologically, with individual chapters addressing the roles of OSD, the Army, Navy and Air Force in two distinct periods.</p> <hr /> <h1>Review</h1> <p>If Dickens were to have written about the years following World War II, he might have started this tome, “It was the best of times; it was the worst of times.” It was certainly the best of times. The United States and its Allies had just waged a war against global domination and won, liberating Europe and the Pacific from aggression and devastation. Economies were on the mend and diplomacy again took center stage. Yet, it was also the worst of times. The Soviet Union had just cordoned off much of Eastern Europe behind an “Iron Curtain” and aimed nuclear-tipped missiles at its former allies.</p> <p>It is within this context that Elliott Converse chronicles the evolution of the U.S. military from waging the largest and most deadly war in history to managing a tense and competitive “Cold War.” As the title suggests, Converse focuses on America’s efforts to rearm and modernize its arsenal in the face of this new and dangerous threat. The author tells an engaging story of the rapid emergence of technology and how a wartime bureaucracy was transformed and reengineered to acquire advanced missiles, aircraft, computers, and of course, nuclear energy and weapons.</p> <p>At its heart, however, is the compelling story of the people who led this transformation. There are familiar players, like Vannevar Bush, James Forrestal, and Hoyt Vandenberg. But there are also intriguing stories of lesser know, but no less influential bureaucrats, including Wilfred McNeil, Clay Bedford, and Walter Whitman.</p> <p>This is a well-researched and engaging book. The author captures the human side of the story through liberal use of quotes and good storytelling to get at why and how important decisions were made. In the process, Converse explores Service rivalries, budget battles, high-stakes intrigue, and behind-the-scenes dealing – and sometimes double-dealing – within Washington’s halls of power. The book is richly footnoted and laced with data charts, tables, period photographs, and biographical sketches of many of the key players.</p> <p>This book is of particular importance to today’s defense acquisition community because it explores our roots. Many of the decisions and actions from this time period are still evident in the organization and processes we use today. Sir Winston Churchill once noted, “Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.” Through the clear lens of hindsight, therefore, we should read this book and learn from the brilliant successes and sad foibles of those who came before us.</p> <hr /> <p>  </p> To print a PDF copy of this article, <a href="/library/defense-atl/DATLFiles/Professional%20Reading%20Program/rearming-for-the-cold-war.pdf">click here</a>.</div>string;#/library/professional-reading-program/blog/Rearming-for-the-Cold-War,-1945-1960
Adapting to Flexible Response to Flexible Response2018-07-17T04:00:00Z to Flexible Responsebanner.jpg, to Flexible Responsebanner.jpg to Flexible Responsebanner.jpg<div class="ExternalClass2087227872A34D64AD027942D08A7939"><img alt="book-cover-adapting" src="" style="margin-right:4px;margin-left:4px;float:left;" /> <h1>Adapting to Flexible Response</h1> <p><strong>Series:</strong> History of Acquisition in the Department of Defense, Volume II</p> <p><strong>Author:</strong> Walter S. Poole</p> <p><strong>Publisher:</strong> Office of the Secretary of Defense, Historical Office</p> <p><strong>Copyright Date:</strong> 2013</p> <p><strong>ISBN:</strong> 978-0160921834</p> <p><strong>Hard/Softcover:</strong> Hardcover, 467 pages</p> <p><strong>Reviewed by:</strong> Dr. Roy L. Wood, Dean, Defense Systems Management College, Defense Acquisition University</p> <hr /> <h1>Summary</h1> <p>Volume 2 of History of Acquisition in the Department of Defense. Contains a history of Federal defense acquisition of major weapon systems by the United States armed forces from 1960 to 1968. Organized chronologically, with individual chapters addressing the new needs for flexibility in defense acquisition in response the rapidly changing security environment under two periods: the President John F. Kennedy and President Lyndon B. Johnson administrations.</p> <p>Covers weapon acquisitions for the Vietnam War, and the rise of nuclear threats, strategic missile systems, military helicopters and nuclear submarines. Includes topics such as dissolving the link between incentives and profits, total package procurement, creation of Federal program managers, prototyping vs component-based systems, and more.</p> <hr /> <h1>Review</h1> <p>John F. Kennedy had won the 1960 Presidential election and entered office with a strong and growing Soviet menace held at bay by his predecessor’s threat of mutual assured nuclear destruction. The Cold War strategy of containing communism also meant fighting surrogate brush wars and conducting bold—sometimes rash—covert operations. Many of these were underway in Europe, Southeast Asia, and in the Caribbean. Vietnam was quickly becoming a focal point for U.S. military support and intervention in this ideological battle of wills. For the United States, 1960–1968 was a time of strategic change abroad and brewing social upheaval at home. This was the environment President Kennedy stepped into when he took the oath of office in 1961.</p> <p>Meanwhile, within the Pentagon, under the newly appointed Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara, change would likewise become the order of the day. Supporting President Kennedy’s shift from a military strategy of mutual destruction to one of “flexible response” meant moving away from near total reliance on nuclear weapons to building capable new conventional forces and weapon systems. This tumultuous period of change and refocus is the backdrop of Walter Poole’s book, Adapting to Flexible Response, 1960–1968. This important book is the second volume in the acquisition series from the Office of the Secretary of Defense, Historical Office (released in 2013).</p> <p>Poole discusses the acquisition of new systems to support the flexible response strategy. Some of these included producing and fielding helicopters in large numbers and in direct combat roles for the first time, continuing to build nuclear submarines and surface ships, and creating fleets of aircraft including the F-111 fighter-bomber and heavy cargo lift C-5A. To produce these systems, defense acquisition management changed dramatically under McNamara’s Planning, Programming, and Budgeting System and Five Year Defense Plan. The Office of the Secretary of Defense and McNamara’s “whiz kids” applied systems analysis to requirements and acquisitions, and encroached as never before on what had previously been Service prerogatives.</p> <p>Poole’s book masterfully sets the stage for this complex drama and describes the forces inside and outside the Pentagon that drove defense acquisition during this period. He then dives deeply into individual weapon systems acquisition, creating rich case studies that give us glimpses into the policies and practices that went well—and those that did not. For instance, he compares the successful C-141 with the troubled C-5A programs to provide long-range airlift and describes the Army’s fascinating political struggle to choose between the M-14 and the AR-15 to outfit its infantry. He discusses Navy shipbuilding and the love-hate relationship with Admiral Hyman G. Rickover and nuclear power, as well as the reliability issues of the Navy’s “3-T” missile (Talos, Terrier, and Tarter) and the move toward a “standard missile” replacement program.</p> <p>Poole’s tome is highly recommended reading for today’s acquisition professionals. Many of the challenges Poole highlights from programs in the 1960s will seem familiar to those encountered in today’s programs—stringent requirements, tight schedules, emerging technologies, a risk-averse bureaucracy, and an assertive Congress that purports to “help.” Set in a tumultuous period of evolving threats, international crises, domestic social unrest, and Pentagon bureaucratic struggles, there are important lessons to be learned and insights to be gained from Poole’s well-written and thoroughly researched history.</p> <hr />To print a PDF copy of this article, <a href="/library/defense-atl/DATLFiles/Professional%20Reading%20Program/adaptingto.pdf">click here</a>.</div>string;#/library/professional-reading-program/blog/Adapting-to-Flexible-Response