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War on the Rocks

Great discussions with security, defense, and foreign policy experts recorded over drinks.
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Now displaying: August, 2020
Aug 24, 2020

As a part of our exploration of national security learning, we had Joan Johnson-Freese of the Naval War College and Mark Conversino of Air University on the show. Tune into this rich and wide-ranging conversation on what's right and wrong with professional military education in the Navy and Air Force. 

Aug 18, 2020

Soon-to-be retired Maj. Gen. William Mullen drops in on the pod to talk about the making of the Marine Corps' newest doctrine, Learning, and how he hopes it will change his beloved Corps. It's all about two words: lifelong learning.

Aug 10, 2020

David McCormick, the CEO of Bridgewater Associates — the world's largest hedge fund, dropped in on the pod to talk about how the United States can prepare itself to compete in a new era in which, more than ever, economic security is national security. Speaking from decades of experience at the highest levels of industry and government, McCormick lays out what America needs to do from policy to innovation to government reorganization to immigration to talent management and beyond. He also discusses the state of the global economy, the impact of COVID-19, and how America's economy could be reshaped to realize equality of opportunity. Want more? Don't miss his essay in the Texas National Security Review with co-authors Charles Luftig and James Cunningham: "Economic Might, National Security, and the Future of American Statecraft."

Aug 4, 2020

Undersecretary of the Army James E. McPherson chats with Ryan about how the Army is coping with COVID-19 — starting with the recruitment pipeline — and the challenges of modernization. He also tells us about his military journey: Jim started as a young man in the Army then later joined the Navy, and he retired as judge advocate general of that service. In the last few years, he was called back into public service as a civilian as Army general counsel. In March he was confirmed as and promoted to undersecretary of the Army. He then served briefly as acting secretary of the Navy. Listen to this episode and learn, among other things, why he thought a request to speak to Secretary of Defense James Mattis was a prank and why his first CO in the Navy (a certain John Allen Williams) left a plant in his bed. 

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