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When was the last time you thought about not just nuclear weapons, but nuclear power? Not just the engineering aspects, but the political, sociological, and hidden strategic risk of nuclear power? It is funny how a topic can keep coming in to your scan after being in the background for so long. The last few weeks, the Navy and the Atom kept breaking above the ambient noise. First was something I first wrote about 30-yrs ago as an undergrad. The topic of the paper, which I received a very disappointing B- on if I recall correctly (NB: when your POLYSCI… Read the rest of this entry »


Posted by CDRSalamander in Foreign Policy, Navy, Strategy | 
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  The June issue of Proceedings offered a call from CNO Admiral Richardson, and his speechwriter Lt. Ashley O’Keefe, encouraging naval professionals to engage with their service through the act of professional writing. The CNO has not discovered a new idea, but instead lends his voice to something a number of recent senior officers have called for, from Stavridis to Winnefeld. Even some “not so senior” officers have suggested the same. Others have written indications and warnings about the risks the voyage entails. There have been a long list of professionals throughout our history who have participated in the development… Read the rest of this entry »


Photo Credit: FVAP “All qualified electors of this state who shall be in the actual military service of the United States or of this state…shall be entitled to exercise the right of suffrage at any general election…at the several posts, camps, or places where the regiment or battery of artillery may be…” Wisconsin State Law, Section One Passed September 25, 1862 Voting while serving in the military was not always as easy as it is today. For a long time, if a soldier or sailor was away from their hometown, they simply didn’t vote. It wasn’t until the Civil War… Read the rest of this entry »


Posted by LT Andrew Poulin, USN in History, Naval Institute, Navy | 
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General Robert Neller has always been regarded as a tough, no-nonsense Marine, and as Commandant of the Marine Corps he has also emerged as a genuine visionary. He deeply understands the future military environment and how his service must prepare for it. At the 2016 U.S. Naval Institute/AFCEA West Conference, the general provided critical insight into his vision, which closely aligns with that of Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Admiral John Richardson, on the direction of leadership development the Naval Services should take. According to the 37th Commandant: I think the training systems we have as far as simulators and… Read the rest of this entry »


Posted by Robert Kozloski in Cyber, Innovation, Marine Corps, Navy | 
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Please join us at 5pm EDT (US) for Midrats Episode 342: Turkey ,Erdoğan & its Miltary – with Ryan Evans: The events of the last week in Turkey brought that critically important nation in to focus, and we are going to do the same thing for this week’s episode of Midrats. Turkey has a history of military coups as a byproduct of an ongoing drive to be a modern secular nation against the current of a deeply Islamic people. This week we are going to look at how Turkey found itself at another coup attempt, the response, and the possible… Read the rest of this entry »


Posted by Mark Tempest in Foreign Policy, History, Soft Power | 
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SAN DIEGO (May 23, 2016) USS Makin Island Commanding Officer Capt. Jon P. Rodgers (right) administers the Oath of Office to (left to right) Ensign Brennan Wyatt, from Greensboro, North Carolina, Ensign Derek Gilmartin, from Bakersfield, California, and Ensign Sarah Kline, from Apex, North Carolina, during their promotion to Lt. j.g. on the ship's flight deck. Makin Island is home-ported in San Diego, undergoing the basic training phase in preparation for a scheduled deployment this fall. (U.S. Navy Photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Clark Lane/Released)

“As our platforms and missions become more complex, our need for talented people continues to be a challenge. We need to recruit, train and retain the right people…” Admiral John Richardson, U.S. Navy Chief of Naval Operations In 2017, nearly 2,000,000 young men and women will graduate from colleges and universities throughout America. We want 200 of the very best to commission through Officer Candidate School (OCS) and serve America as a Navy Surface Warfare Officer (SWO). To be sure, we have historically attracted and retained great people in Surface Warfare. With an eye toward our return to Sea Control… Read the rest of this entry »


Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates

Maybe President Recep Erdogan is not the only one who can take advantage of an opportunity. This idea came to me as I calmed down over the anger rising up within me over Erdogan’s demand for his one-time political ally Cleric Fethulla Gulen who lives in Pennsylvania. My first reaction was – “Let’s call a meeting of the North Atlantic Council and threaten to eject Turkey from NATO.” Of course this is not so easy. No clear article exists about how to go about such a process other than some vague language about being required to “uphold democracy, including tolerating… Read the rest of this entry »


Posted by Dr. John T. Kuehn in Foreign Policy | 
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From our seats in North America, the best response to the upheaval in Turkey over the last week is to be calm up front, but task a little extra work in the back office behind the door. Political chaos and recovering from successful and unsuccessful coups are not unheard of in Turkey. While there are some aspects of the Erdogan government that are less than ideal compared to previous governments, there are good reasons to not buy in to some of the more excited reactions to Erdogan’s response to the coup. At this stage of the game, excessive concern about USA/NATO’s nuclear weapons… Read the rest of this entry »


Posted by CDRSalamander in Foreign Policy, Strategy | 
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Vice Adm. Joseph P. Aucoin, commander U.S. 7th Fleet, and his 7th Fleet task force commanders offer a moment of silence prior to receiving a tour of the Republic of Korea (ROK) ship Cheonan

Standing there, head bowed, pausing to reflect on the 46 Republic of Korea (ROK) navy Sailors whose lives were lost when their ship was sunk by an alleged North Korean submarine torpedo, makes one realize how precarious peace remains in the dynamic theater that is the Asia Indo-Pacific. During what was a leadership symposium for other task force commanders, led by U.S. 7th Fleet commander, Vice Adm. Joseph Aucoin, I had the solemn privilege to tour the memorial dedicated to those Sailors, which includes the salvaged stern of the ship, ROKS Cheonan (PCC-772). ROKS Cheonan was a Pohang-class corvette commissioned… Read the rest of this entry »


Posted by RDML John B. Nowell. Jr in Foreign Policy, Maritime Security, Navy | 
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Please join us at 5pm (EDT) on 17 July 2016 for Midrats Episode 341 “Russia in 2016 with Dr. Dmitry Gorenburg From the sacking of the Baltic Fleet leadership, fighting in Syria, to developments from Central Asia to the Pacific – Russia in 2016 is on the move. To discuss the who, what, where, and why of Russia in 2016, our guest for the full hour will be Dr. Dmitry Gorenburg, Senior Analyst, CNA Strategic Studies, an Associate at Harvard’s Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies, an author, and host of the Russian Military Reform blog. Dr. Gorenburg focuses… Read the rest of this entry »


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