In the News

Nov. 14, 2022

US-Taiwan-Japan Maritime Safety Working Group Report

The United States, Taiwan, and Japan all consider a stable maritime environment critical for security and prosperity. For each of them, maritime stability in the East and South China Seas – and more broadly across the Indo-Pacific region – represents their respective national interests in preserving open sea lanes for transit and trade, reinforcing international norms and rule of law, and reducing the potential for conflict in sovereign and international waters. In recent years, however, all three parties have become increasingly alarmed by the deteriorating maritime safety environment in the Indo-Pacific region, in the East and South China Seas in particular. Especially in the waters surrounding the Senkaku/Diaoyu Islands and the Taiwan Strait, Taipei, Tokyo, and Washington have all intensified their sense of urgency in exploring ways to preserve a safe maritime environment. The U.S.-Taiwan-Japan Maritime Safety Working Group was convened based on such concerns.

Nov. 11, 2022

Combating the Gray Zone: Enhancing America’s Arctic Force Posture

After almost a decade, the White House has released an updated 2022 version of the National Strategy for the Arctic Region. The document establishes four pillars for advancing America’s interests: security, climate change and environmental protection, sustainable economic development, and international cooperation and governance. Though the strategy focuses on transnational threats such as climate change, it emphasizes the danger Russia poses to Arctic security, considering its invasion of Ukraine and its increased Arctic military presence. The updated Arctic strategy complements strategies set forth by the Department of Defense (DOD) and each of the military services by highlighting the impact of climate change and the future role of strategic competition in the region.

Nov. 6, 2022

How The U.S. Navy Can Compete With China In The Gray-Zone

The latest entry in the U.S. Naval Institute’s Maritime Counterinsurgency Project, titled “Winning without Gunsmoke in the South China Sea,” comes from Wendell Leimbach and Eric Duckworth of the Joint Intermediate Force Capabilities Office, a directorate overseen by the U.S. Marine Corps commandant. The office is doing crucial work. Gaming and analysis have revealed that the United States and its allies and partners have no palatable way to defeat China’s “gray-zone” strategy in the China seas.

Nov. 1, 2022

How universities can support the National Defense Strategy

The U.S. Department of Defense released the National Defense Strategy (NDS) on Oct. 27, the first in nearly five years. This comes on the heels of the Biden administration’s recently released National Security Strategy earlier in October. Together, these foundational strategic documents outline the federal government's priorities and approaches to core defense and security challenges. The DoD is the largest federal funder of research and development projects, with a heavy focus on critical and emerging technologies. Unsurprisingly, the National Defense Strategy and National Security Strategy both place United States leadership in the development of new technologies as central to the nation’s security and international stability.

Oct. 24, 2022

The 21st Century’s Great Military Rivalry – Analysis

A quarter-century ago, China conducted what it called “missile tests” bracketing the island of Taiwan to deter it from a move toward independence by demonstrating that China could cut Taiwan’s ocean lifelines. In response, in a show of superiority that forced China to back down, the United States deployed two aircraft carriers to Taiwan’s adjacent waters. If China were to repeat the same missile tests today, it is highly unlikely that the United States would respond as it did in 1996. If U.S. carriers moved that close to the Chinese mainland now, they could be sunk by the DF-21 and DF-26 missiles that China has since developed and deployed.

Oct. 14, 2022

2022 U.S. Coast Guard Strategy

America’s waterways, coasts, and seas are the lifeblood of our economy, our national security, and our way of life. They are a source of vast natural resources— fueling commerce, transportation, and defense while enriching our lives. The safety, security, and prosperity of America depend on reliable access to the maritime environment, protection from threats on the sea, and protection of the sea itself. To this end, the Coast Guard serves as a unique instrument of national power, championing the rule of law and governance on our waters and beyond.

Oct. 11, 2022

Indo-Pacific Exercise Offers Effective Deterrence

The 16th annual Garuda Shield exercise started Aug. 3, this year expanding from a bilateral training event between the Indonesian and U.S. militaries to 14 participant nations, making it one of the largest multinational exercises in the Indo-Pacific region. Garuda Shield is a great example of integrated deterrence where allies and partners work together to deter aggression from China and Russia, Mara E. Karlin, assistant secretary of defense for strategy, plans and capabilities, said during a panel on "Landpower and Integrated Deterrence in the Indo-Pacific" at the annual meeting of the Association of the United States Army.

Oct. 11, 2022

New approach at West Point has cadets attacking future war problems

Wrestling with legal questions on how to use high-energy lasers to strike low-orbiting satellites. Designing and testing a hypersonic rocket test vehicle to cross the 100 kilometer line. These are key future warfare problems that need solutions. But it is not colonels or generals in the Pentagon or some underground research facility doing the work; it’s cadets at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point piecing the puzzle together. The above scenarios, involving Cadets Ashley Clegg and McKenzie Arns on lasers and law and Cadet Josiah Gibson on hypersonics, are only a sample of a list of complex work that cadets now undertake at the Army’s premiere university.

Oct. 5, 2022

Civilian Casualties, Accountability, and Prevention Session 18 of the Congressional Study Group

On January 14, 2022, the Congressional Study Group on Foreign Relations and National Security convened over Zoom to discuss the issue of accountability for—and prevention of—civilian casualties resulting from U.S. military operations. In the months prior to the study group session, there had been a number of disturbing media reports relating to such civilian casualties, including a report that one elite unit may have knowingly or deliberately targeted civilians during operations in Syria. This session examined the scope of this problem and the legal strategies that Congress and others might pursue to address it.

Oct. 3, 2022

Hoosier Guardsmen depart Indiana for Kosovo deployment

Approximately 300 Indiana National Guardsmen with the 38th Infantry Division's 76th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, headquartered in Lawrence, said goodbye to family, friends and peers during a ceremony at Camp Atterbury, Friday. The Hoosier soldiers deployed as Task Force Nighthawk and will be led by Col. Chris Mabis, from Columbus, and his senior enlisted leader, Command Sgt. Maj. Joshua Brown, from Greenwood.

Sept. 27, 2022

Japanese Security Guards train with OC spray

Okinawa's base installations are guarded 24 hours a day, 7 days a week by Japanese Security Guards and Provost Marshal’s Office personnel. They have a variety of tools to help with base safety, one of which is oleoresin capsicum spray. OC spray response training is mandated annually while serving in a law enforcement capacity on base.

Sept. 26, 2022

Directed energy weapon system points toward the future of warfare

No, the Army is not building the Death Star. Contrary to what is in the movies, directed energy does not emit a large red laser, nor does it make a loud noise, and if done right, the target will simply fall out of the sky, not explode in brilliant shards of light, set to a John Williams score. But that is not to say that directed energy is not making remarkable strides in record time. Take Directed Energy Maneuver-Short Range Air Defense, or DE M-SHORAD. The U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command Aviation & Missile Center, the U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command and the Rapid Capabilities and Critical Technologies Office have joined with industry partners to build the next generation laser weapon. And they did it in less than three years.

Sept. 12, 2022

THE PENTAGON’S RECKONING WITH CIVILIAN CASUALTIES IS A GOOD START—BUT IT’S ONLY A START

On August 25, the US Department of Defense announced sweeping changes to help minimize civilian casualties in war. The “Civilian Harm Mitigation and Response Action Plan,” or CHMR-AP, followed the botched drone strike in Afghanistan in August 2021, which killed ten civilians. Following this tragedy, a flurry of investigations exposed the hidden costs of the US drone program and pushed Congress to demand more accountability for collateral damage during military operations.

Sept. 7, 2022

Report to Congress on Navy Shipboard Lasers

This report provides background information and issues for Congress on shipboard solid state lasers (SSLs) that the Navy is developing for surface-ship self-defense. The Navy’s proposed FY2023 budget requests continued research and development funding for these efforts.

Aug. 28, 2022

Pentagon’s Plan to Reduce Civilian Harm May Not Work in Future Conflicts, Experts Say

The Pentagon’s Civilian Harm Mitigation and Response Action Plan released Aug. 25 details nearly a dozen objectives creating institutions and processes to reduce the likelihood of civilian casualties. But critics say the plan’s objectives may do more harm than good, creating extra layers of bureaucracy for planners and operators to navigate, and that it won’t work in a large-scale conflict.

Aug. 24, 2022

THE NEXT VARIANT OF RUSSIA’S POLITICAL WARFARE VIRUS

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has provoked a belated immune response to Moscow’s political warfare campaign to subvert democracy and exploit systemic weaknesses in Europe and the United States. To be sure, there were attempts to halt or roll back the Kremlin’s efforts before the invasion, particularly after Russia’s 2008 war with Georgia and the 2014 annexation of Crimea. It was, however, only after the invasion that countries moved purposefully to close off the broader avenues that had, hitherto, largely remained open.

Aug. 23, 2022

Welcome to the Future: U.S. Navy Destroyers Are Getting Lasers

Though the laser weapon system is not powerful enough to damage other ships, it could be a substitute for a close-in defensive weapon system and is powerful enough to disable small boats and drones.

Aug. 21, 2022

142nd MI Battalion conducts evaluation exercise for National Guard Response Force

The 142nd Military Intelligence Battalion, 300th MI Brigade, conducted an evaluation exercise Aug. 20-21, 2022, for the Utah National Guard Response Force at the North Salt Lake Armory. During the exercise, Soldiers of the NGRF were trained and evaluated on their ability to perform crowd-control tactics and use non-lethal weapons.

July 30, 2022

Marines Corps ARV to Be Armed With New Laser Weapons

The U.S. Marine Corps Advanced Reconnaissance Vehicle (ARV), a new platform in prototype form waiting for additional service testing and evaluations, will likely include a range of laser weapons systems. The ARV program, which could enter production sometime next year, is a key part of the U.S. Marine Corps strategy for future amphibious warfare, particularly in the Pacific theater. The service is now evaluating two industry prototype offerings, and vehicles from both Textron and General Dynamics Land Systems (GDLS) will soon be delivered to the service.

July 21, 2022

MARTAC Demonstrates Surveillance Potential of USVs for U.S. Navy

A family of high-speed unmanned surface vehicles has been getting a lot of play in naval exercises over the last year, helping the U.S. Navy to determine future requirements for USVs in roles such as maritime domain awareness. Maritime Tactical Systems (MARTAC) operates a fleet of USVs the Navy has used in experimentation in such areas as the U.S. Naval Forces Central Command region and Australia.