Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Wednesday Evening Readings


I do not know what the details are for USSOCOM funding of Johns Hopkins APL but from the work I have observed that they have been doing from the Assessing Revolution and Insurgent Strategies (ARIS) project to the typology of resistance to a conference on UW I observed today, I can say that the work they have been doing is top rate and the best support to the military I have observed in my military career.


No: CR-040-15
March 03, 2015


CONTRACTS
ARMY
Massillon Construction and Supply LLC,* Massillon, Ohio (W91237-15-D-0005) and Mi-De-Con Inc.,* Ironton, Ohio (W91237-15-D-0004) were awarded a $15,000,000.00 firm-fixed-price contract with options for various small construction projects within the Great Lakes and Ohio River Division of the Corps of Engineers with an estimated completion date of March 2, 2018. Bids were solicited via the Internet with eight received. Funding will be determined with each order. Army Corps of Engineers, Huntington, West Virginia, is the contracting activity.
UPDATE: ECS Federal Inc., Fairfax, Virginia (W52P1J-15-D-0023); Deloitte Consulting LLP, New York, New York (W52P1J-15-D-0024); and LOGC2,* Huntsville, Alabama (W52P1J-15-D-0025) have been added as awardees to a previously announced (March 21, 2014) maximum $461,000,000 firm-fixed-price, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity task order contract for program management support services for the Program Executive Office Enterprise Information Systems headquarters, directorates, project and product offices and related organizations. These contractors are being added to the previously awarded suite of contracts due to corrective action. Funding and work location will be determined with each order with an estimated completion date of Feb. 26, 2020. Army Contracting Command, Rock Island Arsenal, Illinois, is the contracting activity.
SPECIAL OPERATIONS COMMAND
 
Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, a university affiliated research center in Laurel, Maryland, is being awarded an indefinite-delivery, indefinite-quantity contract with a maximum value of $405,000,000 for theoretical analyses, exploratory studies, and/or experiments in various fields of science and technology; and engineering and/or developmental work for the practical application of investigative findings and theories of a scientific or technical nature through employment of their eight core competencies in support of U.S. Special Operations Command. The work will be performed in Laurel, Maryland, and is expected to be completed by February 2020. Fiscal 2015 research, development, test and evaluation funds in the amount of $656,428 are being obligated at time of award. Contract funds will not expire as the end of the current fiscal year. The award is the result of a sole source acquisition. U.S. Special Operations Command is the contracting agency (H92222-15-D-0004).

Excerpt:

"If the commander on the ground approaches either me or the secretary of defense and believes that the introduction of special operations forces to accompany Iraqis or the new Syrian forces, or JTACS, these skilled folks who can call in close-air support, if we believe that's necessary to achieve our objectives, we will make that recommendation," Dempsey told the House Appropriations Committee's defense panel.


Dempsey does not rule out U.S. ground troops in Syria

By Andrew Tilghman, Staff writer4:27 p.m. EST March 4, 2015


Note the detailed list of specialities and organizations  at the end of the article.

4,100 jobs opening to women in special operations units

By Jim Tice, Staff writer6:25 p.m. EST March 4, 2015



At least someone is having a Solarium conference.  I do wish we would have a national level Solarium Project focused on strategy and policy and red teaming our national security strategy as Ike did.  But I think GEN Odierno is planting some seeds for the future.  With all due respect to the distinguished people and organizations that have participated and organized Solarium like projects I am advocating the real thing, directed by the President with the participation of key officials who will also be responsible for implementation.  All the other conferences are nice to do but the leadership does not seem to embrace the recommendations.  I want the President to own the project and by having his key officials participate they can take a hard look at strategy and then ideally (the operative term or the dream) they would have buy in for implementation of the strategy that would have been thoroughly debated, vetted, and red teamed as well as alternate strategies examined.  A question for the development of the current NSS: we're alternative strategies presented and was there a red team process as part of the development. 

Conclusion:

Few are optimistic about the near term, but these level-headed observers agree that a U.S.-led ground war would only add fuel to the raging fire. The only real strategy, Cronin and the others contend, is to help Muslim allies in the region contain the Islamic State, to stop it from amassing more territory and to force it into a position where it collapses in on itself by failing to expand.
A very tall and sobering order.

New ideas required to fight this brand of terror

By Steve Paul 
The Kansas City (Mo.) Star
Published: March 3, 2015


Excerpt:

"He's conducting an internal inquiry," Dempsey said, adding that he is confident Austin will "take the appropriate action." He did not say what that might be.
The briefing was done by an officer at Central Command headquarters in Tampa, Florida. He spoke by phone to a group of reporters in the Pentagon on condition of anonymity under ground rules set by Central Command.
The episode is remarkable in at least two respects. It was unusual for the U.S. military to disclose in advance the expected timing of an offensive as well as details about the makeup of the Iraqi force that would undertake it. And it was curious that a secretary of defense would wait nearly two weeks after such a briefing to denounce it publicly for having spilled military secrets.

Pentagon calls Mosul briefing a mistake by CENTCOM


Defense Secretary Ashton Carter testifies before the Senate Armed Forces Committee on Tuesday, March 3, 2015.
CARLOS BONGIOANNI/STARS AND STRIPES
By ROBERT BURNS 
The Associated Press
Published: March 3, 2015

Conclusion:

The Pentagon will never be Google, and it shouldn’t try to be, but it can foster an entrepreneurial spirit and inject proven commercial technology expertise into strategic leadership and acquisition positions to better understand and evaluate new solutions. Industry CEOs will have to look across their organizations and determine if they have the right talent to compete in this new environment, and boards of directors and shareholders will have to evaluate their CEOs as well.
In the midst of all of this chaos and process, the new Secretary of Defense,Ash Carter, may need to hold his own version of the “Last Supper”, as his mentor, William Perry did in 1993, to boldly lay out to both the defense and commercial technology industries how he intends to reimagine a diverse, healthy national security marketplace. Progress will come slowly, but the futures of the Pentagon and the industrial base are inextricably intertwined and hard decisions will have to be made to regain and retain technology dominance, and keep America safe in the 21st-centur
The National Security Marketplace Must Become Stronger

THE NATIONAL SECURITY MARKETPLACE MUST BECOME STRONGER

March 4, 2015 · in 

U.S. envoy to Seoul Lippert injured in attack by armed assailant

2015-03-05 08:05
   U.S. envoy to Seoul Mark Lippert was seriously injured Thursday morning after being attacked by an armed assailant, official sources said.

   The envoy was on his way to attend a morning lecture in central Seoul when the attack took place.

   Lippert, bleeding heavily, was rushed to a nearby hospital, the sources said, adding that the suspect was immediately arrested although his or her identity is still not known.

   SEOUL, March 5 (Yonhap)
   pbr@yna.co.kr
(END)
Good analysis and overview by Steve.

Excerpt:

Although the jihadist threat is far from over, special operations forces have also begun looking toward the type of future enemies they might be ordered to fight. In a September 2014 white paper, the U.S. Army Special Operations Command (USASOC) argued that SOF must now master what it called “counter-unconventional warfare.” This idea grew from the sort of multidimensional aggression that Russia has used in Ukraine and other parts of the former Soviet Union. As the USASOC white paper explains:

Russia currently employs special operations forces, intelligence agents, political provocateurs, and media representatives, as well as transnational criminal elements in eastern and southern Ukraine. Funded by the Kremlin and operating with differing degrees of deniability or even acknowledgement, the Russian government uses “little green men” for classic UW (unconventional warfare) objectives. These objectives include causing chaos and disrupting civil order, while seeking to provoke excessive responses by the state’s security organs—thus delegitimizing the Kiev government. Additionally, Russian elements have organized pro-Russian separatists, filling out their ranks with advisors and fighters. Russia’s UW has also included funding, arming, tactical coordination, and fire support for separatist operations.

Countering this kind of hybrid warfare will depend on cooperation among many U.S. government agencies, but the special operations forces will play a leading role. After all, Russian hybrid war relies heavily on special forces, and there is nothing better than a special operator to thwart an enemy special operator.


Role Reversal: U.S. Special Operations Forces After the Long War


A U.S. special operations forces soldier leads Iraqi special operations forces while practicing movement techniques, Baqubah, Iraq, April 6, 2011 (photo by Flickr user DVIDSHUB used under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license).
By Steven Metz, March 3, 2015, Feature


I am happy to read that Gene Sharp is referenced.

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