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Archive for May, 2009

I consider this to be Ralph Peters best article yet. I am also fortunate to call him a friend. I just got off email to him congradulating him on it. His points are similiar to the ones I make in Chapter 3 of my recently released book Manning the Legions of the United States and Finding Tomorrow’s Centurians (Praeger Oct 2008).  If we want a global empire to support our lavish lifestyle absent of responsibility, then we must be willing to sacrifice (an oxymorone to be sure).  Ralph says because we are not, then we cannot win.

Spring 2009 – Number 16 Ralph Peters

The most troubling aspect of international security for the United States is not the killing power of our immediate enemies, which remains modest in historical terms, but our increasingly effete view of warfare. The greatest advantage our opponents enjoy is an uncompromising strength of will, their readiness to “pay any price and bear any burden” to hurt and humble us.

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I had the honor to present or be part of a panel, or both during the last two months, specifically talking about the Adaptive Leader Methodology (ALM) not only to the Army, but also to the other services at Joint Forces Command (JFCOM) Small Unit Excellence conference, at a best training and accessions practices conference hosted by the Department of Defense at the Coast Guard Training Facility Cape May, and Army Research Institute (ARI) conference to measure “Mental Agility.” I also lectured at the Expeditionary Warfare School (EWS) at Quantico with my friends Dr. Bruce Gudmundsson, Bill Lind and Pierre Sprey from the book America’s Defense Meltdown; and I just returned from Army Training and Doctrine Command to discuss the evolution of officership with members of the Washington based think tank Center for Strategic and Institutional Studies (CSIS).

I will take a short breather in June, and then I am off again in July to the U.S. Air Force Academy, Marine Corps Base Quantico, and back to JFCOM, to speak and teach about Adaptive Leader Methodology (ALM).

It does not surprise me, but I have learned from members at each conference that I offer one of the few “people and ideas” approach to leader development and professional military education (PME).  Most of the other solutions are technology based, like bringing live feed into classrooms, or using computer hand held gagets to engage all members of the class.  I thought they were all interesting, but it still takes a great teacher to bring out the best in their students.  Even ALM is nothing without the centerpiece of it which is great teachers who know how to facilitate, and are trusted by the establishment to teach based on principles and not industrial based by the numbers lesson plans.

More later,

Don

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by William S. Lind
19 May 2009

For years, I have warned in these columns and elsewhere that the future weapon of mass destruction we should most fear is not a nuke. Rather, it is a genetically engineered plague, a plague no one has ever seen before and against which no one has any immunity. In the time it would take to identify the new disease, develop a vaccine, distribute the vaccine and have it become effective, modern societies could suffer death rates equivalent to those of the Black Death: up to 2/3 of the population.

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IS there a point in our nation today where a politican can also become a leader and have to tell like it is?

Can a politican be a leader as well as play the politcal side?

I think they can, as Congressman Ron Paul and Senator Jim Webb do, but in my opinion these two guys are rare in Washington, and I would follow them anywhere.

At some point, today’s definition of lying (has become bending the truth) hurts the country, as it has really bad recently.

A bigger issue is does  the public really want to hear the truth?

My opinion and I wrote a chapter in my recent book Manning the Legions on it, is that our public in general does not want to hear the truth about oil peaking (and our strategically horrible energy policies-the worst strategic mistake as a nation we have made in the last 40 years), global warming or overpopulation as long as it can possibility negatively impact the American Dream (shed responsibility in the pursuit of near term happiness). They elect these same people all the time to tell them what they want to hear. Pelosi is just part of that culture, and he or she who casts the first stones better duck themselves.

Anyway, I just got this from my good friend Winslow Wheeler who runs the Strauss Reform Project at the Center for Defense Information, as well as editor of the recent anthology America’s Defense Meltdown, and the editor of my book Raising the Bar.

Take Care, Don

Subject: Pelosi’s Imperiled Pedestle I am a sometime participant at a blog run by National Journal. I couldn’t resist to opine on this week’s topic: Nancy Pelosi’s making herself a floater in her own punchbowl. My comments are below;

the blog is at http://security. nationaljournal. com/2009/ 05/congress- and-torture- holding-l. php

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s attempts to re-groom her non-oversight of the intelligence community and torture in 2002 are as pathetic as the Republicans’ pretense at outrage that any respectable Member of Congress would accuse the CIA of misleading Congress, let alone lying. An executive branch agency misleading Congress? Why, how shocking. In fact, it’s a long honored tradition, started not decades but centuries ago. That’s why the Founding Fathers crafted the Constitution as they did – empowering Congress to perform effective oversight – a function that historian Arthur M. Schlesinger deemed at least as important as the power to legislate.

Quite clearly, Pelosi – like almost every currently sitting Member of Congress – has no clue of the supremely important role of oversight and not the slightest idea of how to perform it, if she cared to exercise it. Congress’ oversight of the intelligence community has been and continues to be a null set. The most obvious indicator of that is the absence of transcripts of the briefings – if that is what you want to call them – given to Pelosi and others in 2002, which by the way would end the controversy and all the pretense in a heartbeat. That transcripts are still not made of these encounters tells us all we need to know about oversight enjoying any hint of revival in these matters.

The good news is that Pelosi’s standing in Washington is now greatly diminished as she twists and squirms to escape the can of worms she jumped into, as eagerly as she was clueless. That gives President Obama a major opening: to pursue his entire legislative agenda without the toxic handiwork of a Speaker of the House who puts short sightedness, hyper-partisanship, and personal status above all else. Unless she makes an even bigger mess of it, Pelosi’s seat as Speaker is probably secure, but now her high-handedness and narrow outlook are likely to be as diminished as her stature.

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I have been off the net lately because I have been attending and speaking at several conferences. I get a lot out of listening to other’s presentations. I also found out how rapidly the Adaptive Leader Methodology (ALM) is spreading, not only in the Army, but outside to other services. Many people I have talked to say “you offered the only idea based solution to leader development, everyone else is relying on technology [new gadgets in the classroom].”

I also got more invitations to come and do my workshop “Deciding Under Pressure and Fast” on how to teach using ALM. So, I am looking forward to an exciting summer.  One last thing, I am proud to announce that my wife Lorraine runs the business side while I handle the academic side. Go to our contact page if you are interested in our services.

More to follow when I finally get breathing time after the middle of May.

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A recently released study “Developing an Adaptability Training Strategy and Policy for DoD,” by the Institute of Defense Analyses (IDA) an Alexandria Virginia based think thank promoted the Adaptive Leader Methodology (ALM) as one of the best two course programs of instruction to develop adaptability.

“Two Army Courses stand out as “best of breed” regarding training that appears to encompass the key attributes which contribute to adaptable performance…These are the only examples of Service training that encompass all the components of the IDA adaptability training model.”

A pdf copy of the report can on line or at www.d-n-i.net.

Don

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