The Day After Kabul

By Garri Benjamin Hendell Everyone in the American military community watched the (most recent) fall of Kabul with their mouths agape. For a generation who grew up in the shadow of Vietnam, to watch another ignominious American retreat was shocking and painful. This was, presumably, an immeasurably worse experience for those that served and lost …

So, About that Next Wave: Planning for the Next War

Forget the enemy: can we overcome ourselves? The new hotness these days is large scale combat operations - or LSCO, for short, just because. Well, I should say, the new hotness other than cyber or Space Force. LSCO is supposed to be all about reorienting the Army to its roots. Back to the good ol' …

Afghanistan Isn’t 1975 South Vietnam, It’s 1948 China

John Q. Bolton We reached in China the exact opposite of what had been our object. – Barbara Tuchman The chaotic 2021 American departure from Afghanistan inevitably invites comparisons to the 1975 fall of South Vietnam. Pictures of helicopters evacuating rooftops evoke feelings of helplessness of an erstwhile partner government collapsing. But before Afghanistan, Iraq, …

How the Baron Harkonnen Failed at Grand Strategy

Science fiction has seen its fair share of questionable military commanders and strategists. There’s Star Wars' Emperor, and his love of doubling or even tripling down on the whole "floating orb of death" strategy, of course. Darth Vader’s fixation on his wayward son to the exclusion of pretty much anything else springs to mind. And …

Finding Space – Chapter Twenty

Click here for Chapter Nineteen It was dark, down in the holding area for prisoners. Blut Bilder squirmed in his restraints, cursing under his breath. He paused, to glance about him once more. No, still dark. Nothing new there. His eyes had only just managed to become accustomed to the gloom, and even then, there …

The Distress Cycle of American Military Conflicts

Like me, perhaps you've been watching the news from Afghanistan wondering how we got to this point. This piece is absolutely not an analysis of our twenty-year conflict there as I am neither an expert on the nation nor an unbiased onlooker. Instead, I've been thinking about the nature of these types of wars and …

“We believe in making treason odious:” U.S. Veterans of the Civil War Attack the Lost Cause

It was 1866, and the men of the US Army, Navy, and Marines had destroyed the rebellion on the battlefield and ushered in a "new birth of freedom." Their work done, they hoped to return to lives filled with the fruits of their blood and toil. That year, they formed a veterans' organization called "The …

Is Saw Gerrera a Terrorist?

This past week, I had the utter delight of participating, in full Jedi Rey cosplay no less, in the 2021 NavyCon. My last panel was a wonderful mix of fellow science fiction nerds and we talked about the intersection of science fiction and military strategy. (If you missed the panel, the replay can be found …

Row Your Boat Ashore for a Break: A Case for The Military Order of St. Jude

By Captains Kenneth Bellows & Gregory Trahan Staff. Army Officers spend most of our time on it and most of that time we spend looking back to our last job on the line and looking forward to command, broadening, or the sweet release of ETS. Staff time is never the highlight, despite 70% or more …