U.S. Objections to the Afghan Taliban: Ends, Ways, or Means?

This article was originally published on Blogs of War on November 16, 2017.  Thank you to John Little for publishing my work!  On December 5, 2001, prominent Afghans met under the auspices of the United Nations (UN) in Bonn, Germany.  The purpose of this meeting was to come to an agreement regarding the provisional arrangements in Afghanistan pending the re-establishment of permanent … Continue reading U.S. Objections to the Afghan Taliban: Ends, Ways, or Means?

The Afghan Taliban’s Nuclear Umbrella

This article was originally published by Inkstick Media on October 23, 2017.  Many thanks to Laicie Heeley for the opportunity to publish with Inkstick Media! On May 11, 1966, the 11-member executive committee of India’s ruling congress[1] party called for India to begin work on nuclear weapons to counter the threat of the People’s Republic of China. … Continue reading The Afghan Taliban’s Nuclear Umbrella

4th Time on Loopcast (Topic: Divergent Options)

On June 11, 2017 the Divergent Options Team of Phil Walter, Steve Leonard, and Bob Hein joined Chelsea Damon and Sina Kashefipour of The Loopcast for a 62 minute discussion of the origin and intent behind Divergent Options. You can access the podcast via the The Loopcast here, download the MP3 here, or access it via iTunes here. If you enjoy The Loopcast please consider making a donation to support it via Patreon. … Continue reading 4th Time on Loopcast (Topic: Divergent Options)

1st Time on Rational Security

On February 2, 2017 I was extremely fortunate to be invited as a guest on the Rational Security podcast hosted by Susan Hennessey, Shane Harris, Tamara Cofman Wittes, and Benjamin Wittes. Here is the episode description from the Rational Security website: The Trump administration’s executive order on immigration spurs chaos and protests. Speaking of protest, does the mass signing of … Continue reading 1st Time on Rational Security

Traits, Obituaries, and Life’s Purpose

This article was originally published on The Military Leader on January 9, 2017.  Thank you to The Military Leader for continuing to publish my work! Suddenly I am of sufficient age and experience that young people occasionally contact me in search of mentorship. Based upon my military, intelligence community, and interagency experience, they often think I can provide them … Continue reading Traits, Obituaries, and Life’s Purpose

National Security Adaptations to Below Established Threshold Activities

This article was originally published on Lawfare, by The Lawfare Institute, in cooperation with Brookings, on August 16, 2016.  To view this article on Lawfare click HERE.  I want to publicly thank Susan Hennessey and Quinta Jurecic of Lawfare for their editing of my work.  It is once again a great honor to have my ideas featured on Lawfare. Two broad themes emerge when … Continue reading National Security Adaptations to Below Established Threshold Activities

Toward a Common Lexicon of Violent Extremism

This article was originally published on Lawfare, by The Lawfare Institute, in cooperation with Brookings, on July 22, 2016.  To view this article on Lawfare click HERE.  I want to publicly thank Susan Hennessey and Quinta Jurecic of Lawfare for their editing of my work.  It is once again a great honor to have my ideas featured on Lawfare. As the fifteen year anniversary … Continue reading Toward a Common Lexicon of Violent Extremism

2026: Operation Iranian Freedom Part 3

Authors’ Note:  This third part of the "2026: Operation Iranian Freedom" fiction series takes place simultaneously with the first installment and second installment but from a different perspective.  This piece of fiction was written along with Diane Maye and Nate Finney.  It was originally published on The Strategy Bridge on June 10, 2016.  This piece … Continue reading 2026: Operation Iranian Freedom Part 3

Combat: Policy, Law, and Reality in the Fight Against ISIL

This article was originally published on Lawfare, by The Lawfare Institute, in cooperation with Brookings, on May 24, 2016.  To view this article on Lawfare click HERE.  I want to publicly thank Susan Hennessey of Lawfare for her editing of my work.  It is once again a great honor to have my ideas featured on Lawfare.   President Obama established U.S. policy towards … Continue reading Combat: Policy, Law, and Reality in the Fight Against ISIL

2026: Operation Iranian Freedom – A Letter Home

This letter home is part of the “2026: Operation Iranian Freedom” series of fiction written by Phil Walter, Dr. Diane Maye, and Nathan Finney and published by The Strategy Bridge.  This letter is written from the vantage point of a soldier serving in the infantry unit described in Part 1, while some other elements of … Continue reading 2026: Operation Iranian Freedom – A Letter Home

1st Time on Loopcast (Topic: Existential Threats)

Chelsea Damon, host of The Loopcast, invited me on for a 30 minute interview where I discussed my Real Clear Defense article "What is an Existential Threat?" I would like to publicly thank Chelsea for inviting me on.  I had a great time on The Loopcast and hope to be invited back for future episodes. … Continue reading 1st Time on Loopcast (Topic: Existential Threats)

Ungoverned Spaces: What threat do they pose?

This article was originally published on Blogs of War on February 16, 2016.  Thank you to John Little for publishing my work!  Note:  You can listen to a 35 minute podcast discussion of this article here and you can also access it via iTunes. Since the attacks of 9/11 there has been much research and policy work done on … Continue reading Ungoverned Spaces: What threat do they pose?

3rd Time on Covert Contact Podcast (Topic: Ungoverned Spaces)

John Little who runs the website Blogs of War invited me back onto his podcast Covert Contact. I am extremely grateful that John offered me this opportunity again.  On this 35 minute podcast I discuss a piece I wrote called "Ungoverned Spaces: What Threat do they Pose?"  This piece looks at the phrase "ungoverned spaces" and discusses … Continue reading 3rd Time on Covert Contact Podcast (Topic: Ungoverned Spaces)

2026: Operation Iranian Freedom Part 2

Authors’ Note: This second part of the "2026: Operation Iranian Freedom" fiction series takes place simultaneously with the first installment but from a different perspective. This piece of fiction was written along with Diane Maye and Nate Finney. It was originally published on The Strategy Bridge on February 16, 2016.  This piece was also republished … Continue reading 2026: Operation Iranian Freedom Part 2

What Is an Existential Threat?

This article was originally published on Real Clear Defense on February 10, 2016.  Thank you to Real Clear Defense for continuing to publish my work! In the United States the 2016 Presidential Election looms and candidates from all sides are taking to the stage at debates and other venues in an effort to establish their foreign … Continue reading What Is an Existential Threat?

Behavior Change and the Instruments of Power

This article was originally published on Blogs of War on December 22, 2015.  Thank you to John Little for publishing my work!  Note:  You can listen to a 35 minute podcast discussion of this article here and you can also access it via iTunes. From the leader of the strongest country imaginable to the head of the local homeowners’ … Continue reading Behavior Change and the Instruments of Power

2nd Time on Covert Contact Podcast (Topic: Behavior Change and National Security)

John Little who runs the website Blogs of War invited me back onto his podcast Covert Contact. I am extremely grateful that John offered me this opportunity again.  On this 35 minute podcast I discuss a piece I wrote called "Behavior Change and the Instruments of Power" which focuses on ideas to influence and change the behavior … Continue reading 2nd Time on Covert Contact Podcast (Topic: Behavior Change and National Security)

1st Time on Covert Contact Podcast (Topic: How War Changes People)

John Little who runs the website Blogs of War contacted me recently with an invitation to appear on his podcast Covert Contact. I am extremely grateful that John offered me this opportunity.  On this 40 minute podcast I discuss my three-part series "War and the New Normal" that I published on the blog Point of Decision. … Continue reading 1st Time on Covert Contact Podcast (Topic: How War Changes People)

Leadership in Action: Colonel Charles A. Beckwith

This article was originally published on The Military Leader on September 7, 2015.  Thank you to The Military Leader for continuing to publish my work! In 1977, after many years of advocating for the U.S. Army to develop a capability similar to the British 22nd Special Air Service (SAS) and in response to multiple terrorist incidents worldwide, Colonel … Continue reading Leadership in Action: Colonel Charles A. Beckwith

War and the New Normal Part Two

This article was originally published on Point of Decision on September 2, 2015.  Thank you to Point of Decision for continuing to publish my work!  Note:  The first part of this article may be viewed here. My rifle made the ever-familiar “chunk” sound as I released the bolt and chambered a round. I then retracted the charging handle 3/4 … Continue reading War and the New Normal Part Two

2026: Operation Iranian Freedom

Author's Notes: I wrote this piece of fiction along with Diane Maye and Nate Finney.  It was originally published on The Strategy Bridge on August 11, 2015.  It was republished with permission by The National Interest.  As of today's writing it has been viewed 4,500 times on Medium.com.  I don't know how often it has been … Continue reading 2026: Operation Iranian Freedom

Destroy, Defeat or Minimize the Islamic State?

This article was originally published on Real Clear Defense on May 27, 2015.  Thank you to Real Clear Defense for publishing my work! During World War II, Germany, Italy and Japan had definitive links between their respective armed forces, governments and ideologies.  Most believe that the defeat of the German[I], Italian[II], and Japanese[III] armed forces began a chain of … Continue reading Destroy, Defeat or Minimize the Islamic State?

Fighting the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant / My Take: Authorization for Use of Military Force

This article was originally published on The Strategy Bridge on February 15, 2015.  Thank you to The Strategy Bridge for continuing to publish my work! The debate regarding an Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF) against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) is in the forefront of the media this week. Since … Continue reading Fighting the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant / My Take: Authorization for Use of Military Force

An Enduring Framework for United States National Security

This article was originally published on The Strategy Bridge on February 8, 2015.  Thank you to The Strategy Bridge for continuing to publish my work! On November 23, 1948, the National Security Council (NSC) approved NSC 20/4 titled “U.S. Objectives with Respect to the [Union of Soviet Socialist Republics] USSR to Counter Soviet Threats to U.S. … Continue reading An Enduring Framework for United States National Security

Words for War: Seven Unknown Quotes on War, Part 5

This article was originally published on The War Council on February 5th, 2015.  I am glad my obscure quotes were found to be of value by The War Council. "I offer neither pay, nor quarters, nor provisions;  I offer hunger, thirst, forced marches, battles and death.  Let him who loves his country in his heart and … Continue reading Words for War: Seven Unknown Quotes on War, Part 5

Counterinsurgency: Planning Demobilization, Rehabilitation, and Reintegration First

This article was originally published at Small Wars Journal on January 18, 2015.  Thank you to Small Wars Journal for finding my content worthy of being published! As a young second lieutenant in the United States Marine Corps, I was taught helicopter operations at the Basic Officer Course and the Infantry Officer Course.  Fifteen years later, … Continue reading Counterinsurgency: Planning Demobilization, Rehabilitation, and Reintegration First

Effective Communication in “The Non-Expert Zone”

This article was originally published on The Strategy Bridge on December 14, 2014.  Thank you again to the team at The Strategy Bridge for continuing to publish my work. You are a subject matter expert within an organization. You have identified a problem. You have a plan to remedy it. Your plan requires additional funding, equipment, or … Continue reading Effective Communication in “The Non-Expert Zone”

Risking Money and Risking Lives: Disproportionate Congressional Oversight

This article was originally published on Lawfare, by The Lawfare Institute, in cooperation with Brookings, on November 25, 2014.  To view this article on Lawfare click HERE.  I want to personally and publicly thank Benjamin Wittes and Bobby Chesney for their encouragement and editing of my work.  It is a great honor to have my ideas featured on Lawfare.   … Continue reading Risking Money and Risking Lives: Disproportionate Congressional Oversight

The Human Dimension White Paper as a Response to Foreign Policy Decisions and Legislative Limitations

This article was originally published on The Strategy Bridge on November 16,  2014.  I am forever grateful to the team at The Strategy Bridge for inviting me to participate with an outstanding array of bloggers in writing our reaction to the United States Army's Human Dimension White Paper. The United States Army has one of the toughest … Continue reading The Human Dimension White Paper as a Response to Foreign Policy Decisions and Legislative Limitations

Anatomy of an “Intelligence Failure”

This article was originally published on The Strategy Bridge on October 7, 2014.  I am forever grateful to the team at The Strategy Bridge for giving me the opportunity to have my ideas reach a larger audience.   Additional note as of November 6, 2014:  This article was republished with permission by the International Relations and Security … Continue reading Anatomy of an “Intelligence Failure”