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Jeremy Lewis, PhD
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September 12, 2017. Dr. Mark Conversino for
Amb. Jack Matlock PhD, “Russia, Then and Now”
Tuesday, October 17, 2017. Professor Loch
Johnson, "American Foreign Policy in a World Both Uncertain and
THURSDAY, November 16, 2017. Professor
Jorge Dominquez, “Cuba: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow”
Tuesday 23 January 2018: Ambassador
Jack Matlock, PhD, “Russia, Then and Now”
Tuesday, February 13, 2018. Professor Gabriel
Aguilera, Air War College, “Venezuela”
Wednesday, April 11, 2018. General
Michael Hayden, USAF (ret), “Global Security”
Tuesday, May 8, 2018. Air War College Professors,
NOTES ON SPEAKERS, 2017-2018
All programs are from 5:30 - 7:30 pm, Gold Room, 2nd Floor, Whitley Hall,
Troy University Montgomery, 231 Montgomery St. Montgomery, AL
Tuesday, September 12,
2017: Dr. Mark Conversino, “Russia, Then and Now”
Mark J. Conversino is Deputy Commandant and Professor of Strategy and
Security Studies at the School of Advanced Air and Space Studies
(SAASS), Air University (AU), Maxwell Air Force Base (AFB), Alabama.
As Professor, he is responsible for creating warrior-scholars of
airpower. Dr. Conversino joined the faculty of the Air War College
(AWC) as a civilian following his retirement from the Air Force and
subsequently joined the faculty of SAASS in 2015. He specializes in
military and airpower history and theory, Russian history and the
politics of the former Soviet Union. His book is Fighting With the
Soviets: The Failure of Operation FRANTIC, 1944 -1945, Lawrence,
KS: University Press of Kansas, 1997.
We rescheduled to 23 Jan. 2018 Jack Matlock, Ambassador in
Residence at Troy University, former Ambassador to Czechoslovakia
and the USSR, and former Director for European and Soviet Affairs on
the National Security Council.
Mark Conversino, "Russia Then and Now." PhD in political
history, has book on Operation Frantic.
Last there in 2014, fewer invitations now from Russian government for
US military, and during Ukraine crisis Conversino had to leave for
Estonia. Questioned at border. Russian thinking in big picture.
Allies in Finland and Baltics are worried by military and
Russians are both post-colonial and post-imperial, post 1991.
Zarpad 2017 exercises large and have unsettled the Baltic allies.
As always, post-colonial people have to redefine
themselves – and current regime has a blood-based nationality of
Russky. Cannot become Russky.
US loses sight of non-transactional relationship over Syria and other
Empire is gone, and state boundaries are now national boundaries.
After 300-400 years of empire building, expanding 50 sq miles daily
for 300 years – gone suddenly from August to December in fall of
Unfair verdict of history, in view of current leaders.
Obama called them a middling regional power -- but they do
not see it that way.
They see the world completely differently.
25 M ethnic Russians were left out in the new states,
many in NATO allies today. Putin, tens of millions of our
co-citizens and co-patriots were in other countries.
Regime now wants to dial back the clock.
Our values are alien and policy of Putin government is to defend
Russians no matter where they live.
Hybrid war with little green men is a concept of war begun by ethnic
Russians and merely supported by their government.
Ukraine suffered millions of losses in 1930s and WW2.
Russians often say they did not lose the cold war – USSR lost but
Russia was only created in 1991. Common to say, ‘No NATO troops were
in Red Square but you treated us like you won.’
Russians get teary eyed about Ukraine, the brother Slavic
state, looking west to Europe. They do not feel that about
Turkmenistan, but Ukraine is special. Putin concerned that another
collapse might happen if Ukraine did not crack down.
[Russian Media, Propaganda, and Public Opinion]
They chose hybrid war or grey zone war, appearing not to be a war,
use deception and divide western allies. Told Ukrainians the fascist
Nazi thugs from Kiev would come to get you; marines seized Crimea
without uniforms, executed well. Putin told other world leaders they
were not his guys.
Russians get their news mostly from government-controlled
news channels (except Moscow Times). Slick sources, unlike cold war
propaganda, fed into US channels. There is no check and balance
system in Russia, so media are concerned to get the story out there
first, and not bother with retractions. Even WaPo and NYT until
recently had Russia feed.
RT has graduates of US journalism schools, real accents – stories
with kernel of truth surrounded by fake news. Editor in chief of RT
was a US editor. RT YouTube channel has top hit rate and in UK was
rated by consumers above BBC! Using American journalists is more
persuasive. Massive subsidy [$400 M?] from Russian government.
Sputnik is ugly little brother – also heavily subsidized by govt.
Bloggers working with multiple accounts, tweeting multiple times a
day. Swarm journalists and comment sites, paid as Russian trolls.
Recent Defense awards for Russian media, info to prepare battlefield
is their doctrine.
Blocking broadcasts in West would be a violation of US First
amendment and of EU rules. Russian media planted story of Syrians
raping a girl in Germany, and Germany had protests from neo Nazis
before they could react. Difficulty is to educate population to be
less vulnerable to foreign propaganda.
Emails 2016 used ‘So whatism?’ Drew parallels with Democrats
interference in own elections. (E.g., Thugs killed 4 M in Ukraine
under Stalin – so what about lunch counter segregation revealed in
Baltic states now have US tripwire force, like Korean
border and Fulda Gap in cold war. Planes are immediately tracked by
advanced SAMs. Estonia and Latvia have large ethnic Russians,
getting most news from Russia and viewing NATO as the danger, not
Russia. Now NATO is wargaming a major war with Russia in Eastern
Europe, and losing. Estonians hope we will honor treaty and defend
them. Russia can change facts on ground while we are extremely
Korean missiles parts could have come from either Russia
or Ukraine, similar parts. Russia trying to keep NK in play.
Why not just ignore NK? Chinese seem to have assured NK would only
defend them if not the aggressor. Conventional deterrence is
uncertain in these circumstances.
Russian economy? Close to a petro state, Russian budget has fallen
by half, has affected a military rearmament plan which has greatly
upgraded equipment till now. Putin has revamped the tax code of a
flatter 13% (not that all pay it) and before crisis built up cash
reserves before Ukrainian war and sanctions. Min Finance says may
run out of reserves by new election 2018. Putin created first ever
Russian middle class, wealth spreading … so mass demonstrations
against corruption shook them. Message is ‘Don’t look at your frig,
look at your TV, and support the government.’ GDP now may be half of
Germany and about Mexico’s – prior to that, Russians had in real
terms, the 7th largest GDP.
Mafia now has gone if it opposed regime, but if they cooperate, they
flourish. Will not tolerate wild west bombings and assassinations of
Likelihood of Ukraine joining NATO? Not good though do already have
visa free travel with EU. War in Donbas has made NATO membership
Lithuania has fewer ethnic Russians but Stalin removed or
slaughtered local ethnicities. Unlike Ukraine, Estonia and Latvia
did not simply give citizenship to those living inside.
Perhaps 100K Russians are stateless. In Central Asia, high ranking
officers all spoke Russian and officials often have Russian names.
Government gives $10K per new child, sponsors Conception Day, and
benefits. Growth in immigration of Asians (satellite states) but
Russians have fire hydrant shaped demographics, population has
declined badly and expected to continue – a problem for holding
territory in Asia in future.
Putin after Crimea made promiscuous statements about nuclear weapons
(doctrine of being prepared to go nuclear, to obtain other gains –
but they know they have to be careful not to overplay hand).
Sowalki gap? Small land corridor between Belarus, Poland and
Kaliningrad. If Russian units drive across that gap, sovereign
Russian territory with massive forces on land and air, cutting off
Baltics. We have only 7 fighters plus some from Belgians, while
Russians have 400 planes close enough. When our planes take off,
they are immediately locked onto by advanced S400 SAMS.
More Russian troops in Kaliningrad than in all of Baltic states
combined. Baltics have been warning us for years they needed to be
in NATO. Russians could take the territory before US could react.
Tuesday, October 17, 2017: Professor Loch Johnson,
"American Foreign Policy in a World Both Uncertain and Dangerous"
Johnson, Regents Professor, University of Georgia, is a distinguished
academic, the author of 30 books and over 200 articles on US Foreign
Policy and Intelligence. A former Congressional staffer, he has been a
visiting scholar at Yale and Oxford. See
program announcement and biography [PDF].
Loch Kingsford Johnson is the former Secretary of the APSA, President of
the ISA, and a staff member of the US Senate Committees on Intelligence,
and Foreign Relations.
How can America relate to the rest of the world?
In the words of the Murphy Commission:
must deal with the world that we find.
Embrace 4 institutional changes and 5 maxims.
Threat assessment exercise every January,
among principals in cabinet room. Prioritize threats. Classified but can
easily guess terrorist groups will be on list. Director Clapper argues
greatest danger is cyberwarfare, and now several investigations.
Basic defects in the way we conduct foreign policy.
NK also in tier 1A threats, which drives resources used. Taliban also 1A
and 16th year makes this the longest war ever for US. Breakout of other
nations, NK, Iran a concern. Russia and China obviously have nuclear
power so in 1A. Tier 1B includes ballistic missile race, plus chemical
and biological weapons.
Tiers 2-4 include Venezuela, human rights, refugees.
VP Al Gore used to argue in these meetings for environmental threats but
these often are not accorded the weighting they should.
Admonitions from fear-mongers, leading to threat inflation. Russell
Brands argues Russian and Chinese expansionism needs great attention;
Elliot argues we are unready to fight.
Curtis LeMay called for immediate strikes on Cuba in 1962 but JFK was
wiley enough to wait for information. Later we learned Russians had
local missiles ready while the nuclear missiles would not be ready for 2
In Vietnam the domino theory won out over the counsels that Ho Chi Minh
-- whose hero was George Washington -- might be able to stand up to
Brits spend on defense only $3.1 Bn, a fraction of what we spend.
Weak intelligence apparatus.
Gap between decision makers and
information. Too many self-licking ice creams, read only by author. More
‘forward observers’ needed in policy departments such as Treasury and
Commerce. EPA international division needed to work with CIA
environmental center, and now does when not too busy. Needs closer
communication. Flood of fire hose information incoming. Must become more
sophisticated to filter signals from noise.
Emphasized military approach over diplomatic.
CIA now working with ‘silicon valley’ (software executives) to improve
information filtering. Integration of 16 agencies is needed, (his HS
classmate) Clapper, very concerned with how to get out of $80 Bn budget,
despite stove piping. President needs holistic view from HUMINT and
Satellites and other methods. We created the ODNI -- but without budget
and personnel authority -- so directors are merely gorillas in
Sometimes (Hitler, 9/11) military is
essential but how much is enough?
Too infatuated with CIA covert action
In cold war spent $525 B/yr on defense, now $600 in real terms. Military
to state spending is 19:1. Present administration plans to increase
military budget while cutting peacekeeping and food aid. 20/22 positions
at State remain unfilled and 1/3 ambassadors not named. Some are
questionable such as Gingrich’s wife as ambassador to Vatican.
Increases often justified by adversaries. But China has only one
carrier, zero cruisers, 19 destroyers, 260 nukes. Albright philosophy
that we have such a good military we should use it – but that is
strange. Better to blow up a few things but do more talking softly. Sec.
Tillerson does not even bother his counterparts around world.
Odd to give Nobel prize to group recently that opposes nuclear weapons
(safer with them in cold war) – but still, how much is enough?
Administration is staffed with generals, balance is toward Pentagon,
even though President and Secretary of State are inexperienced in
foreign policy. Tillerson wanted Elliot Abrams (from Iran-contra) a poor
choice -- but he was excluded anyway because he had criticized Trump in
campaign. Tillerson has yet to give a single foreign policy speech.
After 16 years in Afghanistan -- the graveyard of Alexander the Great,
Russian and English Empires –we are planning increase in troops.
On the verge of a global conflict between Shia and Sunni Muslims – we
should not get in the middle, as may be happening.
– killing machine rather than intel
Too infatuated with executive power.
Ike’s military-industrial complex is now joined by
Should we rely on CIA for aggressive activities? Many errors in 1950s.
Mike Spann (of Alabama) was the first casualty of a good unconventional
Drones are still inaccurate and causing collateral damage. Still lack of
coordination between CIA and USAF drones, and 2 attorneys in DOJ still
call the targets. Perhaps we need a court like FISA to oversee them.
Moving towards an imperial presidency,
contrary to the Founders’ thrust in forming government. Drone strikes in
Yemen were not authorized by the Authorization of the Use of Force in
Afghanistan. What is their legality?
Legislative leaders need to step up and take responsibility.
US needs to listen better to other
nations, not simply call them to tell them what the US is going to do.
Build better consensus before action.
Foreign aid: contribution is 0.06% of US GDP on foreign civil aid, well
below 0.7% standard. Chinese have built railway and harbor in Pakistan
Set good example for world (Fulbright principle) and we are widely
admired for free press and open elections – if not for opiates and mass
Cost of wars in Afghanistan and Iraq (2.5 T in Afghan alone) – better
spent on domestic infrastructure.
Should have listened to German and French
allies and taken time to build information on Iraq. Should have waited
on Viet Nam [in 1950s] to find out how VN was going to develop.
America already great again. But can do better with governing.
Kurds? Need leadership to regard Kurds
for assisting us and they have a claim to a nation, but resisted by
Turks and others.
North Korea – did patience fail there, as with Munich 1938? NK
different, should have opposed Hitler earlier but NK war would go
nuclear almost immediately. Might try basketball diplomacy and rely on
deterrence and Kim’s rationality.
Iran? Many Iranians, below the mullahs, are western friendly, so
possible to deal with them. True that they can develop nukes on military
bases that are exempt from inspections – but we have saturation intel
coverage HUMINT, SIGINT and satellites, and did covert cyber action with
Israelis. Iranians may eventually overthrow the mullahs to escape from
medieval life. Iran is twice the size of Iraq. Better to engage them
with rest of world.
Basis for negotiation is military power – or diplomacy? Trouble with
negotiation from strength is the security dilemma problem – negotiation
from parity is easier. But cannot remove state department – need to
balance military with diplomacy. Reagan realized that his military
buildup was going to bankrupt both US and USSR.
Nuclear triad to be reduced? Bomber leg can be removed and land based
missiles too vulnerable, should rely on naval missiles, which although
imperfect in communications have accurate power. Can dampen down
rhetoric of foreign policy and talk down NK with Chinese – worth trying.
Chinese and Cubans have sent engineers and doctors and nurses abroad,
and US should do such services to balance against military power.
Threats coming from NGOs now rather than states? Yes, and many young
males are attracted by belonging rather than ideology. But we need joint
ventures in factories for Pakistan, and create jobs for youth. States
are still the atom of politics – but many drawn to terrorist groups by
frustrations with jobs and women.
Not America First but a community of civilized nations. Porter Goss said
that since WMD had been wrong, he would not trust working with foreign
countries – but that lasted only about 3 days, because soon had to work
with multiple countries.
THURSDAY, November 16, 2017: Professor Jorge
Dominquez, “Cuba: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow”
Dominquez is a distinguished Harvard Professor, Chair of the Harvard
Academy for International and Area Studies and former Vice Provost for
International Affairs. The author of numerous books and articles on
Latin American Politics, he is a specialist on Cuba.
An internationally known expert on Latin American politics, Dominquez is
the Antonio Madero Professor for the Study of Mexico and chair of the
Harvard Academy for International and Area Studies at Harvard
university. A noted scholar, he is the author or editor of various
books, among them Challenges of Party-Building in Latin America;
Debating U.S.-Cuban Relations: How Should We Now Play Ball?, 2nd ed.;
Contemporary U.S.-Latin American Relations: Cooperation or Conflict in
the 21st Century?, 2nd ed.; Mexico’s Evolving Democracy: A Comparative
Study of the 2012 Elections; Routledge Handbook of Latin America in
the World; Constructing Democratic Governance in Latin America,4th
ed.; Cuban Economic and Social Development: Policy Reforms and
Challenges in the 21st Century; The United States and Mexico: Between
Partnership and Conflict, 2nd ed.; Technopols: Freeing Politics and
Markets in Latin America in the 1990s, and many other books and
articles on domestic and international politics in Latin America and the
Professor Dominquez served as Harvard University’s vice provost for
international affairs (2006-2015) and as director of Harvard’s
Weatherhead Center for International Affairs (1995-2006). A past
president of the Latin American Studies Association and a past board
chair of the Latin American Scholarship Program of American
Universities, he currently serves on the editorial boards of Political
Science Quarterly, Foreign Affairs Latinoamérica, Cuban Studies, Foro
internacional, and Journal of Cold War Studies. He was
series editor for the Peabody Award-winning Public Broadcasting System
television series Crisis in Central America. He is a founding
member of the Inter-American Dialogue and Adviser to the Club de Madrid.
His current research focuses on the international relations and domestic
politics of Latin American countries.
events in Cuba
Demography below population replacement rate since 1978, fewer
kids born, 11.2 M population now and already declining even without
emigration. Life expectancy similar to USA and W Europe, with similar
causes of death (cancers and heart disease).
Why has Cuba’s government lasted so long? Educate girls and they will
take charge of their lives, 85% graduate HS, reduces fertility rate.
Consequences are closing primary schools and opening assisted living for
elderly. Less work for pediatrics and more for geriatrics. Cuba has
excellent demographers but Fidel refused to pay attention.
Median age is 45, 1 in 5 over 60, unprepared to care for elderly.
Unfunded pension liability is colossal. Public opinion poll of public
transport and of public services – only 1/6 approved, state was doing
badly, except education and health care. Believed that grandparents and
kids were well served.
PISA test showed Cubans up with East Asians, a full standard deviation
ahead of Latin America – though less so now. Under Raoul for ten years
[9 since 2008], number of university students has dropped 70%, for lack
of budget. Ordinary people lack faith in future because of poor economic
Officially there is no poverty, but U of Havana colleagues developed
“population at risk” [poverty] category with four criteria
Income $1 below per week, compared to World Bank $2 per DAY.
1/5 Cubans are found at risk.
You do not grow your own food (not even garden at back of house).
You do not have your midday meal at government cafeteria.
You do not receive tips or remittances in hard currency.
Cuba does not compute GDP by global standard method – they use own
method which is unpublished. Even by official standard, growth has been
zero to 2%, except one year at 4% and 2016 actually fell. Reason is end
of Soviet support for Cuba, subsidizing sugar economy. Sugar economy
went bankrupt and only produces 1/5M tons/year and ¾ mills have been
shuttered or are museums. Cuba does not feed itself, imports significant
quantities, in part from US (thanks to Bush exception to embargo).
Cuban manufacturing is a tribute to 1950s tech, supply of goods is
extremely limited. Very slowly adopted measures for service sector as
core of economy, despite hindrance of government running it.
1. Export of professional services to Venzuela and others, but under
Chavez Venezuela ‘s barter of petroleum for doctors, bodyguards and
other professionals. Service exports well exceed value of the petroleum.
However, with decline of markets Cuba has lost some of income. Median
physician expatriate pays effective tax rate of 94%, so doctor earns
very little. Most Cuban doctors are women, and they will soon learn they
could earn vastly more abroad, hence their emigration rate.
2. Welcome international tourists to Cuba, a good move economically, and
that part of Cuban deal will likely continue under Trump administration.
In response to sonic attacks on two dozen diplomatic personnel, US
withdrew all but one diplomat and required Cuba to do likewise in DC.
Cubas’ net tourism visits will have increased again. Canada is top
origin of tourists.
3. Remittances hard to estimate but sociologists and anthropologists
try, and US government estimates higher at $2.5 BN. Median salary of a
Cuban is $1 per day, so remittances important.
4. Authorized ‘self-employment’ (with remittance money often), and with
4 estimated working per license, 2M jobs.
Challenges for small businesses. One buys 1950s cars from US, and
repairs them, but cannot import so couple takes empty suitcases to Miami
twice a week and brings back spare parts as personal effects. 13
employees, and ROI is 18 months. Tax rate jumps with 6th employee and
with 11th employee. So tax hurts job creation but is intended to prevent
accumulation of wealth. Three family members have a license for one part
of business, to avoid paying higher taxes. Sunday job driving tourists
paid double the weekday job as a mechanical engineer.
Cuban economy has dysfunctions even without US economic sanctions, owing
to Cuban government.
Factors for change
Raoul Castro young at 86 years old, but announced in second inauguration
would step down Feb. 2018 (though not as First Sec of the CP). Raoul is
planning for succession but Politburo of 17 members, 8 born before 1945,
9 younger but 4 are newly added and inexperienced. Bad planning.
Another factor for change is Cuban national elections which used to be
one candidate one seat. Now grouping candidates and seats into
collective districts so that each voter gets 3 choices (blank, annul, or
selectively vote for one winner without another). So, does give CP an
indication of candidates who are more or less popular. Straight ticket
is recommended but voters can avoid it.
In the last general election 1.8 M voters voted nonconforming, 1/5 of
Cubans. Cuban government has been considering reforming voting, but so
far has not done so. Reason for differences in voting seems to be Key’s
“friends and neighbors politics” – local candidates got higher totals
than national candidates of politburo.
Every five years have CP congress; one motion was to change official
slogan “Sovereign, Independent, Socialist, Prosperous and Sustainable.”
Motion was to insert “democratic” – failed -- but Raoul announced new
slogan by decree(!).
state banks giving ordinary citizens a mortgage, so depend on
remittances of tens of thousands a month, few authorized to transact so
quasi illegal market developing as Cuban front person buying a property
for investment by a Miami resident. Problem is risk of drug money
Why trade embargo not draconian? Very comprehensive but has fewer US
staff monitoring sanctions than with Iran. Ongoing impact remains
important but I think not as much as other factors mentioned. Main
impact is now at margins – things Cuban government would be undertaking
it cannot – paying much more for shipping and insurance. Even though any
one of us under Obama and Trump could use a credit card – but cannot in
practice because banks fear regulatory burden of Cuban transactions.
Trump has reauthorized agricultural exports, tourism reaffirmed under
If sanctions were lifted, would Cuban economy get moving again, would
help economy but not as much.
Are Cuban security forces reliable? Proud of professionalism. Crossed
Atlantic for 2 wars in Angola and one in Ethiopia, during Cold war –
unlike USSR and USA in failed wars. But equipment is obsolete. One idea
is US to give fast patrol boats to chase drug smugglers. When Raoul was
minister of armed forces, in cold war with 11.2 M pop, sustained bigger
percent in war than US did in VN war. Since early 1990s, only one big
riot in Cuba. Regime very successful in preventing riots and the big one
in 1999 was put down by Interior troops only. Armed forces very loyal
and professional, accustomed to civilian control (though many ministers
ex forces. Would these forces respect a new civilian authority if it
happened – hard to know.
Would we expect a shrinking economy with a shrinking population? Highly
educated workforce could help this but incentive system is not there,
even talented people do not work hard.
State permits FDI only when it sets salaries.
Obesity rate in Cuba? Don’t know but at beginning of 1990s after
collapse of Soviets, there were severe cases of malnutrition. Impression
is Cuba is below median by Latin standards of obesity. Briefed McNamara
for the Cuban missile crisis reunion conference (exhausting) and car
drove really well but roads were bumpy, infrastructure lacking.
Tuesday 23 January
2018: Ambassador Jack Matlock, PhD, “Russia, Then and Now”
Currently Ambassador in Residence at Troy
University, Matlock is a former Ambassador to Czechoslovakia and
the USSR, and former Director for European and Soviet Affairs on the
National Security Council.
Amb. Matlock gave a lively presentation answering several questions
concerning Russian involvement in the 2016 US Presidential Election. He
explained that, while the Russians may have been in support of the Trump
campaign, any tampering with election results was minimal. Additionally,
Amb. Matlock provided insight on the distinction between the end of the
Cold War and the fall of the Soviet Union. He explained that the two
events were independent of each other and, historically, are separated
by approximately two years. He closed the presentation by expounding on
the United States' favorable approval rating in Russia, as opposed to
other countries, and the reason for the approval rating. Amb. Matlock’s
presentation was stimulating and diminished several assumptions about
the Soviet Union and Russia. - Justala Simpson, Huntingdon College
Tuesday 13 February
2018: Professor Gabriel Aguilera, “Venezuela Present and Past: The Rise
and Decline of Chavismo.”
Aguilera is Associate Professor of Security Studies, Air War College,
and a specialist in Latin American Politics, Comparative Politics and
International Political Economy. He will assess the implications of
recent events in Venezuela.
Gabriel Aguilera joined the Air War College faculty in July 2011 where
he directs the Core Course, United States National Security and Decision
Making. He teaches and lectures on global security, international
political economy, and Latin American studies. He serves on the
college’s Curriculum Integration Team that supervises all core courses
taught at the Air War College and directs military instructor
development in his department.
Dr. Aguilera’s research and publications have explored democratization,
the politics of banking regulation, and financial crises in Latin
America. He has published research and essays in scholarly journals and
magazines, including Comparative Politics as well as edited volumes.
Currently, he is editing his manuscript, The Politics of Banking
Crises in Latin America During the 1990s. His new research studies
how democratization is affecting civilian control of Mexico’s armed
He has been a full-time Assistant Professor at the Autonomous
Technological Institute of Mexico (ITAM) in Mexico City and California
State University, Chico where he directed the International Relations
Program. He has also been a Visiting Scholar at ITAM and the Claremont
Graduate School as well as Adjunct Professor at Scripps College,
Occidental College, and Chapman University.
Dr. Aguilera received his Ph.D. and Master degrees in Political Science
from Harvard University, Master’s degree in International Affairs from
the University of California at San Diego’s School of Global Policy and
Strategy, and Bachelor’s in Political Science from Stanford University.
[The economy. ]
Please note, for clarity, the
following notes have been reorganized slightly into more chronological
In a lively presentation, Dr. Aguilera led us from the arrival of
democracy in Venezuela in with the Pact of Punto Fijo in 1958, via the
Caldera regime to the rise of populism under Chavez and Maduro. He
sketched out the economic resources (often squandered) and the
differences among the regimes. Maduro has faced greater economic
problems with fewer resources to maintain political support than did
Chavez. Venezuela, unlike much of Latin America, gained democracy early
but has seen it deteriorate into recent chaos.
First visit to Ecuador in years; voters there pushed back against
authoritarianism and Correa’s regime has changed.
Last visit to Venezuela was in 2000, researching banking and politics.
In Caracas, Chavez has just arrived in politics and culture was open and
Previously in Mexico where authoritarian culture was just giving way to
democracy – it took longer to open up to a researcher.
Venezuela more frank about party politics. Now that open culture has
been thoroughly destroyed by Maduro and allies.
Success of Venezuelan democracy since 1958, Pact of Punto Fijo.
1980s Latin America had military and economic crises but now is the
reverse, democracy has spread.
Venezuela was always marching in reverse, a democracy since 1950s with
well-organized political parties, largely built on oil.
Region still moves with ups and down of international trade, natural
resource dependent. Oil: Venezuela has a large ¼ share of OPEC’s 80%
share of oil reserves, 300 bbl.
Rise of Chavismo
Venezuela was one of founders of OPEC
Mismanagement of these natural resources is a perpetual theme.
Oil is not the whole story.
Has great coffee culture in mountains.
Attempted to build native industries for import substitution. However,
unlike Brazil, its domestic market was too small to develop industrial
Great economic crisis comes late to Venezuelan story, 1989 government
attempted stabilization to correct excesses of 1980s (delayed because of
1992 Pres. Perez is impeached and Chavez attempts military coup that
Pres. Rafael Caldera won power by abandoning party system that he had
founded CDs in 1958 – he understood which way the winds were blowing. He
tapped enormous discontent among citizens, frustrated by political
parties and formed “cockroach” coalition of parties, dismisses all
charges on Chavez and released him.
He did not believe Chavez had a chance of becoming Pres. – widely
See How Democracies Die – recent book recommended.
Economic adjustment under Perez and under Caldera, then banking crisis
in 1993-94 disruptive; then Tequila crisis.
Weak state institutions unable to check corruption. Venezuelan democracy
was under stress for a long period. Had little to show for oil wealth.
Caldera and then Chavez understood need to use that discontent to obtain
power. [Slides skipped here]
1990s Dem decay
[Slide] Map of Democracy index from Economist Intelligence Unit, shows
Uruguay has flawed democracy but Venezuela and Cuba are ranked as
2002 rise of Chavez came during era of Latin American democracy, two
years before coup.
Maduro and populism of Chavez.
Annual GDP change fell 1998-2993 (during his reduction of democratic
institutions), rose 2005-08 but fell 2014-. IMF figures via Bloomberg.
Big businesses tried to remove Chavez in his first few years but failed
because he had popular support 2002.
There was electoral competition 2005-2012 approx.
Chavez did not bring a wrecking ball, but acted as a sniper or fruit
picker neutralizing veto players one by one.
US was not sure whether Chavez was a Cuban style authoritarian or a
Chavez extremely shrewd and pragmatic, pre 2002 was not doing populist
actions until coup set off a wave of strikes among oil workers and
managers. Then Chavez weeded out potential enemies.
He began to use oil resources as nation's checkbook. Real possibility
1993-94 of being overthrown so Chavez opened spigot and used oil
resources for clientelism, nationalized industry and diminished state
institutions that act as checks on his power.
Anti-institutional language, speaks of enemies of the people,
class-based – with veneer of democracy, against old order.
Relies on a network of international ties; Maduro was a foreign minister
who neutralized big actors who might have moved against him. So,
Relentless effort to concentrate power in himself and his cronies.
Rise of Maduro
Maduro has to deal with economic decline since he took office, 10-20%
Corruption and mismanagement
Now socialist party is entrenching itself.
Venezuelan oil production is now falling per Bloomberg News, production
capacity falling and Maduro regime has fewer resources. Has to pick who
US historically seen as only interested in resources, not about helping
the people develop – much as US sees China today.
[Slide of recent headlines] Hyperinflation, bad debt position, oil
collapsing, children hungry and some taken to orphanages.
Regime looking to aid from China and Russia, bond default is
Remains of democracy died in 2017.
Protests in Caracas, shambles, what’s next? Military coup or an
invasion? Do not underestimate the ability of broken states to potter
along and damage their societies. Marco Rubio has tweeted loosely
encouraging a coup – but Chavez coopted military with economic interest.
Cocaine flow from Colombia by land, air and sea across Venezuela, so
military actors may have skin in that game. Not just US but also other
neighbors failed to intervene. Colombia was negotiating a peace treaty
with FARC at the time, so quite honest about not wanting to intervene in
Emigration problem from Venezuela – what is effect of that? Security in
2000 was already really bad and has now become a war zone in cities with
many homicides, not a good place for families; many have fled to
Colombia and Ecuador. Buenos Aires and Santiago have had problems
lately, also – not limited to Caracas. Migration to Latin America and US
via Mexico is likely to continue. Venezuela used to have a well-educated
population in 1950s, suitable for democracy. Prior to 1950s, culture was
historically based on military strongmen and authoritarian regimes.
Have we overcome Yanqui imperialist image of years gone by? Has declined
a little and young people are susceptible to American soft power, having
grown up in democratic culture across Latin America.
Tuesday 13 March 2018: no program
Wednesday, April 11, 2018: General Michael
Hayden, USAF (ret), “Global Security”
man to have been head of both the CIA and the NSA, Gen Hayden returns to
Montgomery and Maxwell. A frequent commentator on television news and
the author of the acclaimed book Playing to the Edge: American
Intelligence in the Age of Terror, he will discuss global
Introduction to speaker
41 years in USAF, head of Intelligence, NSA ’99-2005, Deputy Director of
Intelligence, and CIA. Book, Playing to the Edge, 2016.
Contributor to CNN, NBC and Fox News, Colbert and Bill Maher. Warfare
and national security changed through 9/11 and cyberwarfare. DOD
information technology is attacked 400K times per hour. Fortunate to
have had him in charge.
Will suggest a lens or a way of thinking about the tsunami of info.
I. 2017 year of disruption
I. 2017 year of disruption
II. 2018 year of consequences
III. And then where are we?
More dangerous times before Cuba 1962, was a Captain during DefCon3
alert amid 1973 war, which deterred Russians from shipping weapons to
Egypt through Bosphorus. But never more complicated than now. Too many
events and threats to describe today. We are actually affected by
distant events and we see them on CNN. In this administration we have
seen significant changes Ripped up TPP which was not just economic --
but a painfully negotiated strategic agreement with nations other than
China. Walked out from Paris climate agreement and others. Joint
Comprehensive plan of action with Iran (Hayden was a critic then,
believed US could have secured a harder bargain) but President will
likely rip it up. Moving embassy to Jerusalem. President poked at
Article 5 of NATO. Tariffs, now being threatened, have not been our
style for 75 years.
II. 2018 Year of consequences, 5 points, arranged from short fuse to
1. Kim family of N Korea
III. What should we do about this?
Within our current definition of acceptable risk, we should assume NK
will be able to reach USA with own missile and own warhead, in theory.
Maybe we need to change our definition of acceptable risk. T has amped
up the pressure unartfully at times on NK. Diplomatic, economic
sanctions, leaning on Chinese. Not sure we can affect where it is going.
Kim is not irrational, but coldly calculating his path to survival. Like
a double bill movie of Saddam and Ghadaffi – and Ukraine gave up nukes
to Russia for territorial guarantees in perpetuity. He would have to be
crazy to give up his weapons. Really difficult question. T has pushed
process forward, but likely meeting will be only a photo op at first.
Both sides using word de-nuclearization and have recently mentioned the
meeting directly. DCI Pompeo is preparing to meet. Possibly Mongolia.
For NK means end to US nuclear guarantee over SK, and two other
conditions. Some situations cannot be solved. More dangerous to rid NK
of nukes than to deal with them. Can limit them, observe them, slow
testing program, prevent proliferation – but will have to keep defend
Obama and Kerry should have driven harder bargain, and there was bait
and switch. US Intelligence community finds Iran is further from nuclear
weapons with the deal and process is more open. Iran in 3 baskets:
nuclear program now; in ten years; and all other stuff (Iraq, Syria,
Yemen, Lebanon). Iran is dominant power in 4 sunni capitals. But wrong
solution is to rip up nuclear deal. That would be hitting them with the
carrot instead of using the stick on other areas. T may use rhetoric but
3 times he has recertified the deal. Old cabinet (moving target) only
Pompeo agreed with aggressive approach of T – but new faces now. Iran
deal included EU and would be turning our backs on all of them.
Has lowered throughout Obama’s admin and we ripped up ISIS pretty well.
We are now not in a bad place. Last attack in NY was a truck on a
bicycle path, killed 8 people – suggested limits, lone wolf attacks.
Showed also our limits in stopping that kind of attack. Having been in
charge of surveillance and CT for years, there is nothing more we need
in terms of authorities to press the attack. Military leaders did not
publicly echo T’s remark about pulling out of Syria (to a construction
worker, off the cuff). Obama had given more authority in field, good.
USAF doctrine: (1) deployment phase, then (2) shaping, then (3)
force-on-force phase (“war”); phase (4) is stabilization phase. If you
don’t do 4, you repeat phases 1-3.
Not a resurgent but a revanchist power. They do not have the necessities
of power (only oil, fish eggs and dolls). Declining population and
little immigration. When Putin was president first time, deal was he
would be autocratic and population would be rich. In his second term,
population would be proud (oil was down to $53 /barrel. So he needs to
seen as restoring Russian lands and grievances. Cases: Ukraine, Crimea,
and flying too close to aircraft. He only has two sevens and we have not
called his bluff. Using a chemical weapon in a British village is off
the chart. Rn economy is only 2/3 size of California. He knows he has
limits but must push because time is against him. Putin is like the man
at the small table who saws the legs shorter on the big players table in
the hope he can join without seeming out of place. Meddling and muddling
with American electoral process.
Not an enemy of the US. Logical non-heroic choices to both sides to keep
relations competitive but not in conflict. China has inverted pyramid of
ageing population. Environmental catastrophe – and party legitimacy is
based on economic success which is tapering off as base has reached
medium level. Party trying to legitimate itself by building sand castles
in South China sea. China is resurgent power but sees itself as
restoring empire lost in last century. What should Graham T. Allison has
17 examples of resurgent powers meeting status quo powers. We always
manage to go from old equilibrium – but we always go through global war.
Sino-American relationship is the most important one today. Chinese have
been more aggressive.
Republican annual retreat 2016 to develop common positions – Bob Kagan
sees the melting down of the post ww2 peaceful arrangement Bretton
Woods, World Bank, International Monetary Fund. Erosion of the utility,
relevance of structure we created.
The debate of the Trump administration is where are we.
Walter Russell Meade: US Presidents are of these types in foreign policy
Hamiltonian (US must be strong and prosperous to be free - Romney).
Wilsonian (bottling US manifest destiny and exporting) Jeffersonian
(inward turning, except for N Africa and LA purchase)
Jacksonian (Fox news, “You talking to me?”)
Textbooks of post WW2 are all entitled variations on “ideals and
self-interest” (Hamiltonian and Wilsonian).
Obama was Jeffersonian in second term, nation building at home.
Trump is most Jacksonian since Jackson, whose picture he hung. Walking
away after the fall of the Berlin wall; now back in power. Jacksonians
fight the nation's wars – until they get involved in two high casualty
wars and find it too much. Trump tapped into this I 2016 campaign. He
gets his strength from a channel of US history.
Reagan? Internationalist, balance of idealism and realism. Shining city
on a hill was embracing world.
Salisbury attack by Putin? Expelling diplomats showed unified response
in NATO, like old times.
Best negotiator in world N Koreans? Kim is 33 years old, not with higher
education, so not sophisticated in interpreting US President – so
ramping up language not helpful. Not sure that T read the psychological
profile of Kim. One of NK endpoints is to achieve direct equal relations
– we have restricted them to multiway talks in previous 4 runs. Conceded
to him one of his end goals in agreeing to this meeting, a major
concession. Only OK if we get a deal.
Last missile strike in Syria produced Russian threat to respond; risk
this time? Likely but should not constrain Presidential action because
global opinion is on this side on this issue, good one to fight on. Best
to use indirect fire, not lose airmen; besides US, only British have
TLAM capability [Tomahawk Land Attack Missile] and may not have ship in
Med. Should hit the helicopter base of the the barrel bomb dropping
units [who hit civilian areas repeatedly], and hit Syrian AF HQ because
they have blood on their hands.
Homeland security sufficient against Terrorism? We are a tough target,
have put a lot of money into this, and cannot really do more without
impinging on commerce and liberty. [Soccer analogy]: Pre-9/11 we were
all in our penalty box; post 9/11 we moved to full field, with Special
Forces scoring goals and Intelligence controlling midfield. I do not
think another 9/11 attack is likely with multiple actors, complex
against symbolic target with mass casualties. Airline fluid bomb plot
(multiple airliners with [explosive fluids in] sports bottles) we owned
and only issue was when Brits would arrest plotters after learning from
them. Safer because we are good at this and we have money; geography
protected by oceans; welcoming society handling immigrants. We have
radicalized individuals, true, but not whole communities like the
Global climate change? Would be #6 threat, though not during W.Bush
administration. They were interested in oil pipelines on maps; successor
Panetta founded climate change center in CIA for Obama. I do worry about
ice packs going away. But mass migration, water shortages, historic
drought in Iran. Egypt also. Ethanol from crops forced up price of
staples in Egypt, contributed to Arab spring.
Advised successor as DCI, Gen. Petraeus, that CIA looked more like old
OSS than ever, but it is not, and you must remind yourself of broader
Russians invaded Georgia, got phone call from Steve Hadley – Misha
Shakashvilli – are the Russian going to Tblisi? Had to bring up Georgia
specialists and needed to detect Russian radios in Georgia – could not
establish FEBA [Forward Edge of Battle Area]. Without SIGINT (mostly
deployed in Afghanistan), had to order HUMINT [observers] to drive till
they found Russian tanks and 'called home'.
Tuesday, May 8, 2018: Air War College Professors,
program each year is a report from professors at the Air War College on
visits to different areas of the world as part of the Regional and
Cultural Studies portion of the curriculum. Three professors will report
on their findings from their travel in March and entertain your
Sorenson (Middle East), Dawn Murphy (Japan, Republic of China, and
Republic of Korea) and Amit Gupta (South Asia)
Dr. David S. Sorenson - Chair, Department of International Security
Studies (biography from AWC)
Dr. Sorenson, Professor of International Security Studies, received
his Ph.D. from the Graduate School of International Studies at the
University of Denver, and his BA and MA from California State
University at Long Beach. He previously served on the faculties of the
University of Colorado at Denver, Denison University, and the Mershon
Center at Ohio State University. He has published Syria in Ruins:
The Dynamics of the Syrian Civil War (Santa Barbara, CA: Praeger
Publishers, 2016; Lebanon: Global Security Watch. Westport,
CT: Praeger Publishers (2010), Interpreting the Modern Middle East,
(edited), (Westview Press, 2010), The Process and Politics of
Defense Acquisition: A Reference Book (Praeger Publishers,
2008), An Introduction to the Modern Middle East (Westview
Press, 2nd Edition 2013), Military Base Closure: A Reference Book
(Praeger Publishers, 2007), Shutting Down the Cold War: The
Politics of Military Base Closure (St. Martin's Press, 1998),
and The Politics of Strategic Aircraft Modernization,
(Praeger, 1995). He has also co-edited The Politics of
International Aircraft Collaboration (London: Ashgate
Publishers, 2000), and The Politics of Peacekeeping (Frank
Cass Publishers, 2005), and numerous articles and book chapters on
Middle East politics, defense budget politics, and national security
affairs. Professor Sorenson was AWC Associate Dean for Academic
Dr. Amit Gupta - Department of International Security Studies
(biography from AWC)
Dr. Amit Gupta works on international security issues, the politics of
globalization, Indian and Australian politics, popular culture, media
and politics. [He is also the author or editor of several books,
including Global Security Watch: India and Strategic
Stability in Asia.]
Dr. Dawn Murphy - Department of International Security Studies
(biography from AWC)
Dr. Dawn Murphy, Assistant Professor of International Security
Studies, joined the Air War College faculty in 2015. She specializes
in Chinese foreign policy and domestic politics, international
relations, and comparative politics. Her current research analyzes
China’s interests, identity and behavior as a rising global power
towards the existing international order. Specifically, she examines
China’s relations with the Middle East and Sub-Saharan Africa and is
writing a book titled Rising Revisionist? China’s Evolving
Relations with the Middle East and Sub-Saharan Africa in the
post-Cold War Era. The book project is based on field work
conducted as a Visiting Scholar with the Chinese Academy of Social
Sciences in Beijing, China; a Visiting Research Fellow with the
American University in Cairo, Egypt; and a Visiting Researcher at
Stellenbosch University’s Centre for Chinese Studies in South Africa.
Murphy holds a B.S. in Industrial and Labor Relations from Cornell
University, Master of International Affairs from Columbia University’s
School of International and Public Affairs, and Ph.D. in Political
Science from George Washington University. Her previous academic
appointments include Postdoctoral Research Fellow with the
Princeton-Harvard China and the World Program at Princeton University
and Visiting Assistant Professor of Political Science at George
President Hammond announced he was retiring (again) in December.
[Chorus of boos and calls for him to stay]
Dave Sorenson: Morocco, Turkey and Egypt
Conversino, thanks to Grant (applause); and introduction: Three
members of the Department of International security studies. Sorensen
has written extensively on the Base Realignment and Closing issue and
the Middle East. Dawn Murphy has lived and worked in the PRC,
researching China’s foreign policy in the Middle East. This tour was
to Northeast Asia. Dr. Amit Gupta, researches the impact of
Democratization, civil-military relations and [economics?].
Dawn Murphy: Japan, Korea and Taiwan
Morocco, Turkey and Egypt, all Muslim but all different.
Morocco semi-democracy with parliament under King.
Monarchies work in the Middle East, though without money, Morocco
needs political skill.
Egypt recently won 97% of vote and other three were arrested. Military
autocracy, and parliament does not really work.
Turkey now like DPRK (North Korea), President has arrested 150,000
officials including military.
Civil military relations,
Morocco has thoroughly professional F16 military with own maintenance.
Egypt: military makes washing machines, garbage bags and a large
proportion of economy.
Turkey: competent officers are in prison or fired; losing battles with
others in Syria. Loyal military is less competent.
Economy: Morocco doing well making inexpensive European cars for
Europe, high speed rail, infrastructure, doing things they should be.
Egyptian and Turkey economy have problems of totalitarian state, more
unnecessary bridges, tunnel and airports but running up debt. Egypt
likewise, megaprojects rather than productive investments.
Arab-Israeli conflict has now gone away – why so little reaction to US
moving to Jerusalem. Saudi has now cut the support for the
New conflict is Shia-Sunni. Both Saudi and Israel are lobbying
effectively in Washington. Hezbollah did well in this week’s elections
Japan: role of military in Japan’s defense is being discussed now.
Confidence in US alliance and J does not have many partners in region.
Concerns are rise of China, island disputes and NK’s nuclear weapons
Amit Gupta: South Asia:
ROK (South Korea) transition from Park (impeached) to Moon (more
receptive to NK relations and less to Japan). Security for ROK less so
about DPRK (North Korea) but growing is fear of DPRK response to US
Before tour there had been 6 nuclear tests, and expected above ground
tests and a normal trajectory missile. NK 2006-17 range of missile and
Recent changes: New Year’s address by Kim called for participation in
SK Olympics and increased interaction with rest of world. Olympics a
victory for NK diplomacy. South Korea engaged in discussions with NK
and informed US of possible US-NK meetings. Kim and Moon have met for
first time in SK.
Denuclearization offered but includes removal of US troops and end of
US nuclear umbrella for SK. US seems to have abandoned CNBV (complete
nuclear ban and verification). May end up with redefinition or with
brink of war – hard to tell.
Taiwan increased tension with PRC over flight paths of civil aircraft,
especially during Chinese New Year. China still inviting businesses to
trade but worries and Taiwan worried about long term Chinese
US concerned China is revisionist power. Trump promised actions
against China, paused while wanting Chinese pressure on NK.
What is the big picture for US [to 2050] and how does [military?] fit
3 problems: (US budget, demographics, [attitudes to military?])
15-20 years of money deficit
Again, 58% of AL children in 2010 were on Medicaid. (We do have
socialized medicine). 64% of Wisconsin cheese head kids 2016 on
Either taxes must be raised or US will be unable to pay for future
Millennials 60% said under no circumstances would fight for US. 20%
only under some circumstances.
Alliance deficit: allies all have aging populations, Japan losing 20%
of pop by 2050. Germans 51% elderly. Swedes at height of cold war had
800K troops and reserves – now only 14K troops and 25K reserves.
India 1.3 Bn population, democratic and secular, professional
military, fights in deserts and mountains, land warfare with Air Force
as artillery. Australians loved Iraq war and only lost one to vehicle
collision and one other to accidental weapons discharge. Even a few
casualties of war might cause a withdrawal. India concerned rise of
China. Can work with Vietnamese, Indians and ___.
India cooperation with US? Types are military-military;
government-government not so good; and society: students to US
universities; Bangalore and Silicon Valley; Indian diaspora;
Hollywood-Bollywood. (Latest Avengers film raised more abroad than at
home even in first weeks.)
Effect of dropping US treaties and agreements recently? Agreements are
government-government and upheld regardless of administrations and
parties, e.g. SALT agreements. When an administration breaks an
agreement without due cause, problematic.
Trump abrogated Iran agreement with NATO allies without any new,
scientific counter-evidence. Causes credibility issue for US.
TPP (Trans Pacific Partnership) faced domestic opposition on trade,
but always more than economics; other countries are not interested in
changing provisions. Security provisions are important.
Maximalist request now from US to China may not find common ground,
talks may fall apart, or US may only gain minor concessions.
JFK made agreement not to invade Cuba, and that was upheld by
subsequent Presidents of both parties.
Chinese have a regional trade program that does not fuss about human
India-Pakistan relations, and impact of extraneous factors such as
Deterrence nuclear, conventional and unconventional, China has all
three. India-Pakistan both have nuclear deterrence; Pakistan lacks
conventional (faces stronger Indian army); but India lacks
unconventional deterrence against militant groups. Important response
to terrorism is returning to normal business next day. India needs to
invite US businesses into their markets and become too big to attack.
Shanghai regional relationship organization.
Future of Japan with aging but offset by robotics?
Japan needs more educated women participating in workforce. [Has some
other means of offsetting aging costs.]
Social interaction rather than military interaction driving relations
Korea’s historical legacy of being colonized by Japan and so does
China. But strong bilateral US relations with Northeast Asia.
Chinese-American relationship is a competition for soft power; China
has a repressive society so weakens soft power.
Advertiser rankings have US 1 and Germany [high]; only non-western
country is Japan on list.
US has 20/30 top universities in world. 146/500 top universities are
US. Immigrants leading top US high-tech companies: Sudha Pichai, CEO
of Google; Satia Nadella of MS; Elon Musk from SA; Sergei Brin
Russian; Frenchman in EBay; many immigrants in Silicon Valley.
Until Chinese have open society with immigrants, will not be able to
Morocco and Tunisian leaders did learn administration from the French.
Morocco and Tunisia also aimed at modernity rather than Arab identity.
But Algeria next door the French fought brutally to hang on to Metro
France, did not do it so well.
Egypt and Turkey both losing their conflicts? Prospects?
Egyptian conflict is in Sinai, has been ignored too long and poverty
too high; Egyptian military lacks professionalism except among
armored. Ground and AF are not so professional – have inflicted more
casualties on own than on enemy. Poor maintenance on F16s, only 30%
can fly. Maintenance crew could not read English manuals. Officers
have good clubs but poor professionalism.
In Turkey, best officers arrested for fear of Gulen influence.
Officers often not even with troops in combat – and US has been
equipping Peshmerga and Iraqi resistance, effective forces.
Special Programs and other Activities
Spring 2018, Great Decisions Program
at ALWAC.org for this seminar series, featuring excellent readings and
lively, local speakers. Topics and study booklets (with expert articles,
maps and photos) are produced by the Foreign Policy Association and
published the first week in January. The program begins in mid-January
and runs for 8 consecutive weeks. This year, we offer them at the most
popular time (Tuesdays, 2 pm) to assist more people to participate.
Location is 106 Bartlett Hall, behind our usual Whitley building at 231
Great Decisions 2018 sessions, with dates: issue numbers, "topics" and
January 16: Issue 1, "The Waning of Pax Americana," Grant Hammond,
January 23: Issue 2, "Russia's Foreign Policy," Mark Conversino, PhD,
January 30: Issue 3, "China and America: The New Geopolitical
Equation," Buck Grinter, AWC Retd.
February 6: Issue 7, "South Africa's Fragile Democracy," Steve
Burgess, PhD, AWC
February 13: Issue 5, "Turkey: A Partner in Crisis," Dave Sorenson,
February 20: Issue 8, "Global Health: Progress and Challenges," Col.
Paul Nelson, MD, AWC
February 27: Issue 4, "Media and Foreign Policy," Jeremy Lewis, PhD,
March 6: Issue 6, "US Global Engagement and the Military," Grant
Hammond, PhD, CSAT
Collaboration with Global Ties Alabama,
educational, charitable institution based in Huntsville which assists
the U. S. Department of State in arranging and hosting participants in
the Fulbright Scholars exchange and visitors program and placing
visiting groups of scholars and students with those in the local area
for dinners or brief home stays as they visit the Capitol, historic
sites in the Montgomery area, the Southern Poverty Law Center, the
Alabama Shakespeare Festival and local universities.
Interaction with some of the International Officers stationed at Maxwell
AFB for a year and their families
Members are also invited to:
Matthew West, Doctors Without Borders, "South Sudan and
Montgomery, 6:30 pm, 18 April, at Gayle Planetarium, 1010 Forest Avenue.
Part of a traveling series of events called “On the Road” which is a
45-minute presentation by a senior fieldworker followed by Q and A and a
reception. The speaker is Matthew West, Deputy Head of Mission who has
worked with Doctors Without Borders for seven years, and his talk is
about his experiences working in places including South Sudan and Syria.
It is a free event and not a fundraiser, open to the public.
Doctors without Borders would be delighted if AWAC members could attend.
Here is the Eventbrite page if you would like to register.
Revised 5/7/18 by Jeremy Lewis