Small Wars Journal

12/13/2020 News & Commentary - National Security

Sun, 12/13/2020 - 10:56am

News and Commentary by Dave Maxwell. Edited and Published by Riley Murray.

 

1. Gen. Mark Milley: The Biggest Security Challenges for the U.S.

2. Stop treating vets as untrustworthy, second-class citizens in the SecDef debate by Charlie Dunlap, J.D.

3. Analysis | What we know about Rep. Eric Swalwell's ties to an alleged Chinese spy

4. HASC Chair Smith Calls For New National Defense Strategy, Nuclear Policy Review 

5. War Powers: What Are They Good For?

6. China's rise exposes the 'myth' of the liberal global order

7. How Hawaii Became A Training Ground For The Indonesian Military

8. Mercenaries on the Battlefield: What Legal Advisors Must Know 

9. Combatting Terrorism Amid The Pandemic

10. 'US still the target': Indonesia's arrest of Jemaah Islamiah terrorist leader reveals thousands of recruits

11. Abu Sayyaf sub-leader falls, 2 more surrender

12. Former Special Forces Officer Warns of Color Revolution Tactics Used Against Trump

 

 

1.Gen. Mark Milley: The Biggest Security Challenges for the U.S.

https://www.wsj.com/articles/gen-mark-milley-the-biggest-security-challenges-for-the-u-s-11607824353? – 13 December 2020

I agree the NDS is a good document and I hope key elements of it are incorporated into a Biden Administration update.  I am glad the CJCS did not talk about bringing forward stationed troops home as he did recently.  I think that idea goes against both our National Security and National Defense Strategies. 

 

2. Stop treating vets as untrustworthy, second-class citizens in the SecDef debate by Charlie Dunlap, J.D.

sites.duke.edu · by Charlie Dunlap, J.D. · December 9, 2020

Conclusion:

I don't think we need statutory bars for persons who must be personally nominated by the President and, further, clear Senate confirmation.

But if we do, let's not start with bans targeting those honorable Americans who put on a uniform to go in harms' way prepared to lay down their lives to defend this country and its Constitution.

 

3. Analysis | What we know about Rep. Eric Swalwell's ties to an alleged Chinese spy

The Washington Post · December 11, 2020

A useful summary of the situation.

I have not seen this widely reported:  

What we know about how Swalwell and Fang interacted on substance: Axios reports that U.S. officials don't think Fang ever got classified information as she cozied up to politicians, including from Swalwell. He is not accused of any wrongdoing. After U.S. intelligence officials briefed him in 2015 on their concerns about Fang, he cut off ties with her. Swalwell said in a statement to Axios this week that he provided information to the FBI about her and that he hasn't interacted with her in six years. Fang has left the country.

We also know that top members of Congress from both parties got briefed by intelligence officials in 2015 about suspected Chinese spies trying to infiltrate Congress.

 

4. HASC Chair Smith Calls For New National Defense Strategy, Nuclear Policy Review 

news.usni.org · by John Grady · December 11, 2020

I do not think we will see a new NDS for at least a year if not more.  I think the current one is sound and when the next strategy is written I hope it retains many of the key and important concepts in the current strategy.

 

5. War Powers: What Are They Good For?

cnas.org - By Richard Fontaine, Loren DeJonge Schulman and Stephen Tankel

The entire paper can be accessed here: https://www.cnas.org/publications/reports/war-powers-what-are-they-good-for

Conclusion: Much of the discourse these days regarding the use of military force focuses on ending the "forever wars," and the need for Congress to undertake AUMF reform. Yet, as this report illustrates, such reform is just one piece of a larger puzzle when it comes to regulating the use of force. Members of Congress and staffers should not consider the legislative options available to them in isolation of one another. They will need to take into account potential tradeoffs, but must also look for opportunities to stitch together different approaches in order to reclaim Article I authority. Perhaps most important, the small number of lawmakers and staff motivated by these issues will need to expand the community of interest that exists for exercising this authority if they have any hope of Congress playing the role envisioned for it in the Constitution.

War Powers: What Are They Good For?

Four Legislative Strategies to Influence the Use of Force

 

6. China's rise exposes the 'myth' of the liberal global order

ABC.net.au · December 12, 2020

Excerpts:

We are in a world with no easy choices, and utopian belief in universal liberalism is not the answer. Despite wishing it so, China has not become like the West. It has grown richer, stronger and more authoritarian.

It has not been on the wrong side of history.

It is one of the liberal fantasies that we can vanquish history. The late historian Eric Hobsbawm wrote of the 20th century that "the historical memory was no longer alive".

Young people, Hobsbawm said, grow up in a "permanent present". But in the late 1980s and early 1990s "an era in world history ended, and a new one began".

China and Russia have long, hard memories. History has never died there.

Hobsbawm concluded his study of the 20th century, The Age of Extremes, with a warning: we may not know where we are going, but history has brought us to this point.

He said we cannot prolong the past: if we do we will fail. We must change, he said, or "the alternative to a changed society is darkness".

 

7. How Hawaii Became A Training Ground For The Indonesian Military

civilbeat.org · by Kevin Knodell · December 11, 2020

I had no idea about this training in Hawaii.

 

8. Mercenaries on the Battlefield: What Legal Advisors Must Know 

lieber.westpoint.edu · by Jeffrey S. Thurnher · December 2, 2020

Conclusion: Mercenaries will play a role in future conflicts as they provide the legal ambiguity America's adversaries seek in conflict. To prepare for future combat, legal professionals must remain attentive to these emerging participants of war. Judge advocates must also be vigilant about identifying the legal implications associated with mercenaries for their commanders.

 

9. Combatting Terrorism Amid The Pandemic

theaseanpost.com – by Muhammad Faizal Abdul Rahman – 12 December 2020

 

10. 'US still the target': Indonesia's arrest of Jemaah Islamiah terrorist leader reveals thousands of recruits

https://www.scmp.com/week-asia/politics/article/3113648/us-still-target-indonesias-arrest-jemaah-islamiah-terrorist - by Amy Chew – 12 December 2020

We cannot neglect the terrorist threat in Southeast Asia.

 

11. Abu Sayyaf sub-leader falls, 2 more surrender

philstar.com · by Emmanuel Tupas

 

12. Former Special Forces Officer Warns of Color Revolution Tactics Used Against Trump

ntd.com · by GQ Pan and Joshua Philipp · December 11, 2020

These kinds of reports are troubling.  I think this former Special Forces Officer, like many, is ill-informed about the Color revolutions particularly the Orange Revolution in Ukraine.

For those with an interest in understanding "color revolutions" I recommend the Casebook from the Assessment Revolution and Insurgent Strategies project. 

The case study of the Orange Revolution in Ukraine begins on page 801 at this link: https://www.soc.mil/ARIS/books/pdf/CasebookV2S.pdf

Synopsis:
The Orange revolution took place during the 2004 presidential election in Ukraine and involved the mass mobilization of the population and the unification of key leaders and organizations in order to prevent a fraudulent election.  The promotion of nonviolent civil disobedience, as well as embracing constitutional and institutional judicial and legislative structures within Ukraine, ensure the successful completion of a democratic electoral process.

 

 

"When you reach the end of your rope, tie a knot in it and hang on."

- Franklin D. Roosevelt

 

"Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passion, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence." 

- John Adams

 

"There is simple ignorance, which is the source of lighter offenses,

and double ignorance, which is accompanied by a conceit of wisdom;

and he who is under the influence of the latter fancies that

he knows all about matters of which he knows nothing.

-Plato

Categories: News

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