FAOs tend to be warrior scholars, always studying, reading, learning. We've collected some items we think are worth highlighting to our membership. If you have other items you think should be added to our collection, please email our webmaster.
Letter from the FAOA President
FAOA News and Notes
FAOA News and Notes Jun-Sep 2010
FAOA News and Notes May 2010
FAOA News and Notes April 2010
FAOA News and Notes March 2010
FAOA News and Notes February 2010
FAOA News and Notes January 2010
FAOA News and Notes December 2009
FAOA News and Notes November 2009
DoD FAO Program Policy
Research and Analysis
Another great article from the Small Wars Journal, this is a must-read for the FAO community. Dr Tony Corn turns a critical eye to the current state of civil military relations and theory; what is the true nature of today's military leader? Is he an organizational man? A charismatic leader? Is she a professional soldier or a war manager? Dr Corn argues the nature of today's "conflicts" - extended campaigns, multinational and multi-organizational in nature involving a vast array of civilian, government and military actors, state-building, regime-changing, stability and security focused -- calls for a new focus on developing leaders who are at once soldiers (and all the tradecraft associated with the stragetic, operational and tactical application of force) and diplomats, able to move seamlessly in the political realm.
"Between the Soldier and the Diplomat, there is only a difference of degree. In terms of organizational culture, to be sure, Defense is from Mars, while State often appears to be from Venus. In terms of expertise, though, there is a continuum between their respective field, i.e. strategy and statecraft."
From the Small Wars Journal, Colonel Buck Elton, Commander of the Joint Special Operations Air Component, brings this raw and down-to-earth account of how our armed forces are playing a truly remarkable and significant role in this humanitarian crisis, especially in relation to their efforts at the Port au Prince airport. Originally derived from emails to family, Colonel Elton's short article is an up-front and honest report on the difficulties he faced.
Here's a quick trip report from FAOA Board Member John Haseman on his recent trip to Asia. Anytime a Board Member travels either professional or for personal reasons, they always try to connect with the membership, and potential members, in the field.
US Army LTC James Minnich, a FAOA member, worked in and around the Korean peninsula for nearly twenty years and developed a thorough understanding of the political-military situation of the region. In 2001, then MAJ Minnich attended the Republic of Korea Army (ROKA) College and gained a new and deeper knowledge of the tactics of the North Korean Military. Based on the ROK's exploitation of a North Korean defector and 30 documents of North Korean related reference material, Minnich combined his extensive experience in Korean affairs with his ROKA College education and produced this study, a "further illumination on North Korean Military tactics as taught by the ROKA. Since this 2001 paper, LTC Minnich has continued his research and released his 2005 book North Korean People's Army: Origins and Current Tactics.
A thesis by then LCDR Joseph Piontek that "assesses the evolution of foreign area expertise in the US armed forces in the twentieth century." He evaluates how each service developed the FAO expertise and how well that development is meeting current and future mission requirements. Written in 1999, it is an interesting analysis with application today.
Is the military uniquely suited to meet national security or foreign policy objectives previously the realm of the State Department or NGOs? In this working paper, Edward Burke, a researcher at FRIDE (an independent think-tank based in Madrid and focused on issues related to democracy and human rights; peace and security; and humanitarian action and development), tackles this issue and argues many humanitarian and reconstruction efforts will increasingly need to fall to the military to succeed.
What is the DoD's role in foreign policy and diplomacy? While the State Department is the lead foreign policy organization within the US government, the DoD plays an increasingly important role in diplomacy largely through its long tradition of international engagement through shaping the security environment. In this paper, Dr Derek Reveron, from the US Naval War College, examines military diplomatic engagement activities as a part of US grand strategy and explores the legal and policy implications of an increasingly militarized foreign policy.
The attache corps must be transformed. The DAO should be under the combatant commander. The best qualified officer should fill the DATT position and not be filled by service equity considerations. DATT billets should only be filled by O-6s and above. These are some of the arguments that COL Timothy Shea, USA, presents in this article published in the Joint Force Quarterly, Issue 38, 2005. Have any of these suggestions been implemented? If not, are they still relevant? You decide!