Nicholas Danforth recently sat down with Agustina Giraudy, Adam Isacson and Anya Prusa to discuss the latest political developments in Latin America. This the second installment of our two-part podcast. The conversation began with an overview of the role of the military in different Latin American countries, before pivoting to an examination of regional views of great powers. The conversation concluded with a discussion about U.S. policy in the region, and how different governments view the Biden administration.
On this episode, Ryan sat down with Schuyler Moore, the chief technology officer for U.S. Central Command, to discuss how it is planning to fight and win the next war with new and exciting technology.
Nicholas Danforth recently sat down with Agustina Giraudy, Adam Isacson and Anya Prusa to discuss the latest political developments in Latin America. This two-part podcast covers the rise of the Left in the region as well as its implications for relations with Washington, Moscow and Beijing.
Fresh back from his research trip to Ukraine, Mike Kofman joins Ryan for a discussion about what he learned. They discuss the battle for Bakhmut, munitions shortages and force structure, artillery and attrition, Russia's unimpressive offensive, and what else the West could be doing to set Ukraine up for success in a widely anticipated spring offensive.
Undersecretary of Defense for Policy Colin Kahl and Counselor to the Secretary of State Derek Chollet join the show to reflect on the war on year after Russia's brutal invasion and the commencement of Ukraine's monumental resistance. In a wide-ranging, hour-long conversation, the two respond to Ryan's questions about the arming of Ukraine, sanctions, choices about certain platforms and munitions, China, India, America's staying power, and much more.
Mike Kofman sat down with Nicholas Danforth to discuss Russia's latest offensive, it’s focus, and why it has been underwhelming so far. The conversation analyzes the current state of the conflict, where it may be headed, the constraints each side may face in the coming months, and whether this year could see decisive turning points in the war.
Mike Kofman and Ryan Evans cover a lot of ground in this episode about the war in Ukraine: Russian goals in the Donbass, the coming Russian counter-offensive, the state of Russian and Ukrainian forces, tanks and infantry fighting vehicles, cluster and sensor-fuzed munitions, fourth-generation fighter aircraft, a warm winter, nuclear risk, and more. If you are interested in what's happening in and around Ukraine, this is another must-listen episode.
Ryan sat down with Dr. Mara Karlin, who serves as assistant secretary of defense for strategy, plans, and capabilities. They discussed the making of the new National Defense Strategy, the critical topic of implementation, integrated deterrence, how Russia's fumbles in Ukraine have changed the way the Pentagon thinks about Moscow as an adversary, and a whole lot more.
In his latest discussion with Ryan on the war in Ukraine, Mike Kofman explains why the coming spring and summer will be strategically decisive. He also offers his analysis on the Russian command reshuffle, new Western kit, and the grinding battle for Bakhmut.
Michael Kofman joins Ryan for their first discussion of the new year on the war in Ukraine. They cover the state of play at the various fronts, manpower and materiel, the Russian strike campaign, and more.
Ryan recently traveled to Air University at Maxwell Air Force Base where he was joined by three of the many big thinkers teaching servicemembers down there: Andy Akins, Anna Batta, and Mark Conversino. They covered the risk of nuclear war over Ukraine, the prospects for negotiations, why so many struggle with strategic empathy, and efforts to learn lessons from this war, which often stumble when we fail to learn lessons about ourselves.
Mike Kofman and Nick Danforth start this episode by analyzing the latest events in the war and the fighting in and around Bakhmut. Mike offers his thoughts on Russia and Ukraine's stockpiles of artillery, and what that may mean for the fighting this winter and beyond. The conversation concludes with a discussion about foreign support for the war effort, and the implications of this for the future of the conflict.
Mike Kofman and Ryan Evans start this episode by taking a step back to the beginning to put this stage of the war in context. Mike offers possible scenarios on the next few months of the war, discusses Ukraine's recent strikes on Russian bases deep in Russian territory, and assesses the state of forces, munitions, and kit on both sides.
War on the Rocks threw a party for almost 200 people on the sidelines of I/ITSEC, the premier modeling and simulations conference held every year in Orlando. At this party, we had a special guest for a live podcast recording: Lt. Gen. Brian "Smokey" Robinson, the commander of Air Education and Training Command. In a chat with Ryan, he laid out his objectives, the future of education and immersive training for airman, and the centrality of data. Robinson emphasized this is not just about pilots — as pilot training is only 10 percent of what his command does — but all airmen. In forging ahead, he echoed former Assistant Secretary James Geurts, saying "We have to demand curiosity." The two also chatted about his career, why he joined the Air Force, and why squadron command was his favorite job. They also took some questions from the audience on professional military education, the T-7A program, his tentative 2023 pilot training goal, and his favorite superhero.
For a transcript of this episode, visit: https://warontherocks.com/2022/12/cognition-and-curiosity-a-conversation-with-lt-gen-brian-robinson
Ryan sat down with Josh Wolfe, co-founder of Lux Capital, in his New York office earlier this month to talk about why he is drawn to invest in companies working on national security challenges. But the conversation covered much more than that. They covered everything from the major defense industry primes to why anger is an important driver of innovation to what he looks for in founders, and beyond.
On this episode, Ryan and Mike discuss the liberation of Kherson, the Russian military's strategy before the start of the winter, and Ukraine's efforts to retain the initiative once the weather improves in the spring. We also offer a sample from Mike's latest members-onlypodcast, the Russia Contingency, which features an in-depth conversation with RUSI senior research fellows, Justin Bronk and Jack Watling, about the Russian air performance during the war.
While in Ukraine, Ryan sat down with Brig. Gen. Viktor Khorenko, the commander of Ukraine's Special Operations Forces. They discussed the roles and missions of Ukraine's special operators in this war, from its opening days to the present, as well as how their Russian enemies have operated. We hope you enjoy this discussion, which marks the first time Khorenko has been interviewed.
Mike Kofman and Ryan Evans recorded this episode on the war as they return home from their week-long research trip to Ukraine. They cover the fight for Kherson, Russian failures in the east, Russia's attacks on Ukrainian infrastructure, and dirty bomb threats. If you're interested in hearing more from Mike, we are launching a members-only podcast that he hosts called "The Russia Contingency." We offer a sample of one of the early episodes of that show, which features Mike chatting with Konrad Muzyka about the current and future threat to Ukraine from Belarus. Become a member to get access.
During a visit to Maxwell Air Force Base, Ryan had a chance to visit with Lt. Gen. Andrea Tullos, the president and commander of Air University. We spoke about her career, how she ended up commanding the lead agent for Air Force education, producing practitioners in the art and science of air-minded warfare, the addition of more wargaming at Air University, and preparing the Air Force for an era of strategic competition. She ends with a call for military personnel to engage in professional and public debate.
A blown up bridge, progressing Ukrainian operations in the east and south, and an unimpressive Russian mobilization effort. How should these be understood? Michael Kofman updates us on the war in Ukraine.
Lawrence Freedman and Michael Kofman walk us through the post-Cold War history of the Kremlin as commander. In the second episode of this multi-part series, they focus on Russia's intervention in the Syrian Civil War and its first assault on Ukraine in the aftermath of Euromaidan. In Syria in particular, Moscow thinks it makes major progress on command and high-tech targeting, but that later proves to be something of a mirage. The Western intervention in Libya is also an important part of this period, informing how Vladimir Putin views threats to his own power and influence. Ukraine soon reveals itself to be an unresolved issue for Moscow. Don't miss the first part of this discussion, which focuses on the First and Second Chechen Wars as well as the Russo-Georgian War of 2008. In these episodes, Freedman draws on his new book, Command: The Politics of Military Operations from Korea to Ukraine.
After Ukraine's stunning Kharkiv counter-offensive, Vladimir Putin has doubled down on his war against Ukraine, announcing a large military mobilization, threatening nuclear use, and pressing ahead with referenda in territories Russia has seized from Urkaine. Can Putin salvage his campaign? Michael Kofman helps us understand these issues and more, encouraging people to think more temporally about Russia's mobilization pipeline and delivering a warning: We are in uncharted territory.
Vladimir Putin's role as supreme commander has been center stage, offering a floundering and frightful performance. To understand the present, we reach back to the past. In the first of a multi-part series of episodes, Lawrence Freedman and Michael Kofman walk us through the post-Cold War history of the Kremlin and especially Putin as commander, starting with the First Chechen War through the short Russo-Georgian War (2008). In doing so, Freedman draws on his new book, Command: The Politics of Military Operations from Korea to Ukraine (https://amzn.to/3qYxPEF).
On a foggy morning in August 1918, Allied forces commenced the Battle of Amiens and the Hundred Days Offensive that ended the Great War. A German general later called it "the black day of the German Army." The Russian military has had a black week ever since Ukraine launched a counter-offensive in the Kharkiv Oblast. Whether this heralds the last phase of this war is still unknown. Regardless, recent events have been a massive setback for Russia. We had Mike Kofman on the show to discuss.
Join us for another discussion with Michael Kofman on the war in Ukraine. The main focus of this episode is the southern counter-offensive launched by Ukrainian forces early this week. Mike explains what has happened so far in this operation, centered around Kherson, and how observers should think about it as it unfolds. The two also discuss what Ukrainian combined arms warfare looks like, manpower challenges on both sides, the airpower picture, and how the counter-offensive is affecting the war in different parts of the country. Also, what is happening in Belarus as far as this war is concerned? And is either side prepared for how long this war is likely to last?