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  • Publication Date: 09-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: What lessons have you personally drawn from the decade of war in Iraq and Afghanistan? Blair: The decade of war is really two decades of war–from the time the Cold War ended in about 1989 through the disappearance of the Soviet threat and the involvement of the United States in a series of individual military actions. What I've learned is that we need to do a better job thinking these conflicts all the way through before we engage in them. Because it turns out that we are relearning an old lesson, which is the use of military force is only a part of improving a situation and protecting American interests in a particular country or region. Too often, we think that a military victory itself will cause the desired result. In fact many other factors come in to play; economic development, social development, government improvement. These are not accomplished by the U.S. alone, and certainly not by American military force alone, but often with allies and other partners, and with other civilian capabilities. I think we have not thought them through carefully as to the end state that we are trying to achieve. Next we need to be realistic about the resources that are required; military, civil, and other. I'm afraid these are old lessons that need to be relearned, not new lessons, but they certainly have been borne out as some of the shortcomings of the interventions we have made in recent years. I would add, by the way, that I am not one who says our military interventions since 1989 have all been disasters. I think on the whole they have made the world a better place; bad people who were around then aren't around now, from Manuel Noriega to Saddam Hussein through Slobodan Milosevic and others; so it is not that our military interventions have been wasted. On the contrary–but we need to make sure that we get the maximum possible benefit from them and intervene in a smart way.
  • Topic: Cold War, Government
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq
  • Author: Stuart Bowen
  • Publication Date: 03-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: There now exists a “golden hour” for repairing the U.S. approach to stabilization and reconstruction operations (SROs). The past 8 years of rebuilding efforts in Iraq, fraught as they were with painful and expensive challenges, yielded numerous hard lessons that provide a clear basis for comprehensive systemic reform.
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq
  • Author: Laura Cleary
  • Publication Date: 03-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: Once viewed as an interesting but minor subset of the broader disciplines of international relations and security studies, the promotion of civil-military relations (CMR), under the new and broader banners of security sector reform (SSR) and stabilization, has become a critical component of foreign, defense, and development policies of former colonial powers in the 21stcentury.1Indeed, it would be fair to say that the promotion of CMR/SSR has become a booming industry. The United States, United Kingdom (UK), Germany, and France have sanctioned the development of this industry through the award of contracts to preferred service providers. There appears, however, to be little consistency, coordination, monitoring, or regulation in the selection of service providers or in the way in which the service is provided.
  • Topic: Reform
  • Political Geography: United States, United Kingdom, France, Germany
  • Author: Caroline Earle
  • Publication Date: 03-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: Current Department of Defense (DOD) policy directs the development of capabilities within the Department to foster integration of the stability operations mission internally as well as externally with interagency partners. This policy identifies support to integrated civilian-military efforts as a key element of successful stability operations. DOD efforts parallel those taken by U.S. Government civilian agencies that respond to national level guidance endorsing the importance of stability operations missions and emphasizing the importance of civil-military integration in those missions. The question remains, how is the U.S. Government faring in achieving the objectives of interagency integration for stability operations?
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Kevin P. Newmeyer
  • Publication Date: 03-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: Threats to computer systems, government and commercial networks—and even private citizens' personal information—have exploded in recent years, but the U.S. Government has failed to address these threats adequately. One author has stated that “the cyber threat [is] the most pervasive and pernicious threat” facing the country today. The danger is no longer random teenagers looking for thrills by hacking into the local university network, but sophisticated criminal enterprises looking to steal information or money. The same technologies used to attack financial systems can be unleashed on the Nation's critical infrastructure. In 2007, several Cabinet Departments including Defense, Homeland Security, and Commerce were hacked and terabytes of information were exfiltrated by unknown agents.
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Dennis Cahill
  • Publication Date: 03-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: For Combined Joint Task Force (CJTF)–82, assigned to Regional Command–East (RC–E) from June 2009 to June 2010, rotation 10 of Operation Enduring Freedom was a time of major transition for military operations in Afghanistan. Several changes were made in the way that U.S. forces approached engagement with the civilians and Afghan military forces during that timeframe. Among those changes were the expansion of the presence of U.S. Government civilian agencies in the country and the requirement to integrate representatives from those agencies with military organizations throughout the area of operations. This “civilian uplift” represented the largest deployment of U.S. agencies to a combat zone since the Vietnam War.
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States
  • Author: Joe Quartararo, Sr., Michael Rovenolt, Randy White
  • Publication Date: 03-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: U.S. Africa Command (USAFRICOM) was established in 2008 as a new kind of geographic combatant command, one focused primarily on stability and engagement operations rather than warfighting. As such, many of its key leadership positions were filled by non–Department of Defense (DOD) personnel, and its civilian manning was proportionately larger than at other commands.
  • Political Geography: Africa, United States
  • Publication Date: 03-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: After a career at the Department of State, and now serving as Deputy Administrator at the U.S. Agency for International Development [USAID], how would you characterize the differences in organizational culture between State and USAID?
  • Political Geography: United States, America
  • Author: James Kunder
  • Publication Date: 03-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: For serious students of Afghanistan specifically, and stabilization operations more generally, two recent books are worth a look. Both Joseph J. Collins's Understanding War in Afghanistan and Dov S. Zakheim's A Vulcan's Tale: How the Bush Administration Mismanaged the Reconstruction of Afghanistan focus on U.S. policy toward that tortured South Asian country.
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, South Asia
  • Author: Andrea Barbara Baumann
  • Publication Date: 06-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: American-led interventions in Iraq and Afghanistan are drawing to an end and the political climate inside the Beltway has turned decidedly hostile toward large deployments of U.S. troops and civilians overseas. Consequently, stability operations have dropped off the radar for many analysts and commentators. The policy community that once feverishly tackled questions over how to stabilize foreign countries through the extended deployment of military and civilian capabilities under various labels (most prominently state- or nation-building and/or population- centric counterinsurgency) is shifting its gaze elsewhere. With growing hindsight, the entire endeavor is often declared as flawed from the start. In addition to this sense of strategic failure, a drop in political attention now heightens the risk of losing hard-earned insights from these operations. This is therefore a crucial time to evaluate the institutional developments that operations in Iraq and Afghanistan have spurred.
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq, America