A Tarnished Legacy: Confederate Battle Honors and the Army National Guard

On July 18, 2020, an African-American woman took command of a military unit that once used to be part of rebel general Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson's famous "Stonewall Brigade." Captain Candice Bowen became the first woman to command an infantry company in the Virginia National Guard, assuming command of B Company, 3rd Battalion, 116th Infantry Regiment. …

How “Scrubs” Characters are Basically Your Military Unit

Sure, at first glance, you wouldn't think that a TV show about a doctors, nurses, and a crazy janitor at teaching hospital would have anything to do with the military. However, both the military and the medical professions have a lot in common: life and death decisions, long periods of boredom punctuated with brief moments …

Put Down Clausewitz, Pick Up Pratchett 

Step aside Clausewitz, a new thinker has entered the professional military education (PME) ring – Sir Terry Pratchett.  Military theory and history are the bedrock of PME. They should remain so. However, popular fiction, even books which at first blush have very little to do with the military, can contain very useful insights for leaders. …

The Issue with the Army’s SHARP Program: How Army Culture Dismisses its Female Service Members

   The Army, specifically Fort Hood, has been in the spotlight due to the recent events surrounding the disappearance of PFC Vanessa Guillen—and it’s not going to change anytime soon. What we are seeing is the surfacing of the issues regarding consent, power dynamics, and the inability of junior and senior leaders to foster an …

Leader, Know Thyself

Stay in the military long enough, and you'll gain rank. Rank comes with privileges and responsibilities. But it also comes with something else: something more dangerous. Ego. Now, one might say that if you're aiming to be a leader in the military then you're going to have ego anyways. People who strive for leadership positions …

Russian Military to Occupy Baltics to Prevent COVID-19 Infections

Author's Note: This is a satirical article meant to highlight the absurdity of Russia’s reportedly low COVID-19 infection rate and it’s continued use of hybrid warfare in conflicts with its neighbors. After a frenzied 24 hours of military activity, President Vladimir Putin announced that the Russian military has sent assistance to the Baltic countries of …

Yes, #MilTwitter is Still Worthwhile

While perusing Twitter, I saw this piece pop up: "Is #MilTwitter Worth It?" Since I often ask myself that same question, I clicked on the link and read the author's thoughts. He points out - rightly, in some cases - that Twitter can be a bit of dumpster fire. And MilTwitter an especially smelly dumpster …

FOB Couch: COVID Isolation, Deployments, and Coping Tips

With most of Americans entering week two or three of social distancing or quarantine, circumstances are taking on some rather familiar overtones for many of us. Confined to one small area, save for periods of time where we leave the walls of safety and venture out into a hostile world – surrounded by a threat …

Assuming Command: A Guide for Incoming Company Commanders

Well, look at you. You got selected for command. First off, congratulations, you've been given an awesome trust: the lives of America's fighting women and men. There's really nothing so amazing as this. Secondly, say gooooodbyyyyyyye to your free time, 'cause the unit owns you now, baby! But hey, it's all good. You're going to …

Readiness in the Time of Coronavirus

We spend a lot of time in the Army talking about readiness. But what does readiness look like in the face of a pandemic? Do we stop training? Stop pushing out new equipment? Where does one draw the line when it comes to providing a trained and ready force, while also looking after the health …