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 …

Francois de Fleury: the Most Badass Engineer of the American Revolution:

Hey, Army Engineer community, pull up a chair, we need to have a little chat about how we talk about our own history. Somehow, we always let the infantry, armor, and field artillery take center stage when it comes to talking about badass historical figures. We just sort of sit back and mutter, "Well, we …

#NextWar: A Fictional Cautionary Tale

The armored JLTV’s diesel engine growled as the transmission downshifted to avoid getting stuck in the rutted, muddy road.  The hulking four-wheeled truck’s right front tire splashed into a deep puddle, cascading windshield with brown water and banging the soldiers inside hard against the armored doors. “Goddamn it, Cisneros, who the fuck taught you how …

Can You Hear Me Now: What Happens When Battlefield Communications Don’t Communicate

cover photo of soldiers with communications equipment

Amateurs, so the old saying goes, talk tactics, while professionals – whoever they are – talk logistics. Okay, sure, that briefs well, but who is it that talks communications, then? You know, the 1/3 of that “shoot, move, and communicate,” that we’re always harping on. If your answer is, “Well, I always just get the …

Playing Patience: Hills to Die On. Or Not.

Someday, you’re going to take that guidon or flag and you’re going to be that head honcho; the boss; the decision-maker; the grand moff. Well, okay, hopefully not the latter, as that means that you’ve somehow slipped into the chain of command of the Galactic Empire. As you rise in rank and responsibility, your duties …

Paper Tiger: The Myth of Physical Conflict with China and Implications for Land Warfare in the Pacific

China is regarded by many defense and strategy experts as a significant threat to U.S.’s national security and global influence. This sentiment was shared by former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and current Undersecretary of Defense for Policy John Rood. Conversely, China views the U.S. in a similar light. On March 5, 2021, General Xu …

Tips for Task Force Engineers

It's never easy being that new person on staff. It's even less easy when you're not organic to the battalion or unit that you're attached to and have to begin all that relationship building stuff from scratch. It's like Mean Girls except with maneuver officers. Which is somehow worse. Being a task force special staff …

Operational Lessons from Legend of Korra

The Legend of Korra is not only a good primer to study insurgencies, it can also be used to study operational art. The Battle of the Bay which took place between the Equalists and the United Forces over control of Republic City in season one episode eleven is an especially suitable example. The United Forces …

The Army is Not for Everyone

The Army is not for everyone.  More often than not, this phrase is a not-so-thinly veiled critique of those leaving the service, either on their own terms or not.  Proponents of this phrase tend to mention how only a small percentage of the population serves and how much more selective the military is compared to …

Taking Ownership: The Problem of Command Teams and the SHARP Program

I spent 12 months managing a division-level Sexual Harassment and Assault Response and Prevention (SHARP) program. It was evident, commanders have varying opinions on what “success” means in SHARP. It was even more clear Commanders were not in sync with the inner workings of their programs. The more senior in rank the commander was, the …