12 February 2019

India Does Have a Real Employment Crisis – And it’s Worsening

Santosh Mehrotra

Economists have been writing for some months that, contrary to the claims of the government, there is plenty of data available that shows unmistakably that unemployment is high and rising.

Educated unemployment has worsened just as young people are getting better educated, and expect to work outside agriculture in industry and services.

We have done this on the strength of analysis of household surveys – Annual Survey, Labour Bureau (LB) 2015-16 – with a sample size the same or larger than the five-yearly employment-unemployment surveys of the National Sample Survey Organization (NSSO).

India’s Pakistan policy adrift

Brahma Chellaney

Consider two developments in recent days that speak volumes about India’s Pakistan policy: Just as the United States moved to unilaterally withdraw from a major arms-control pact (the Intermediate-Range Forces, or INF, Treaty), “incredible India” — as it calls itself in international tourism-promotion ads — welcomed an inspection team from a terrorist state to scrutinize Indian hydropower projects that are being built under the terms of the Indus Waters Treaty (IWT).

And, as if to mock the Indian foreign secretary’s formal protest over his call to separatist Umar Farooq four days earlier, Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mohammad Qureshi on Saturday telephoned another secessionist leader in Kashmir Valley, Ali Shah Geelani. Qureshi and Pakistan’s all-powerful military generals think they can get away by provoking India.

China’s chilling debt trap for Pakistan: How everything China invests goes back to it, along with a lot more


‘Higher than the highest debt, deeper than the deepest trap’. Yes, this should be the new slogan of Pakistan-China’s so-called 'all-weather friendship', now that China’s sinister objectives behind the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) have been exposed.

According to a report, documents of the ministry of planning and development have revealed that Pakistan will pay China $40 billion for the $26.5-billion CPEC investments in 20 years. This figure doesn’t include the $8.2 billion Mainline-I project of Pakistan Railways — the only project that can materialise in the next few years, according to the report.

Pakistan’s ministry of finance has shown these documents to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) during bailout negotiations.

So they apparently tried their best to hide the total cost of the dollar-wasting and anti-economy projects.

Meeting In Moscow: The Taliban Meets The Afghan Opposition – OpEd

By Binoy Kampmark

It had the semblance of a play lacking key actors. They were deemed the difficult ones, and a decision was made to go through with the performance. The Taliban were willing to talk with their adversaries, but they were keen on doing so with opposition politicians rather than the stick-in-the-mud types in government led by the current President Ashraf Ghani. The assessment from The New York Times over the whole affair held at the President Hotel in Moscow was that the meeting could only be, at best, “a brainstorming session”.

The Taliban officials going to Moscow were a different crew, at least in terms of perceptions. These were not the intemperate salad day youths of 1996, yanking cassettes from car stereos in Kandahar and ranting against all matters musical and female. These were men of diplomacy, their guns holstered. Gone were visions of seizing the whole of Afghanistan and establishing a broader theocratic state. Doing so, by their admission, would not bring the state to peaceful order. Nor, and here there will be questions, did they seem unwilling to reconsider their position on broader notion of human rights.

Govt Lodges Complaint With UN Over Taliban Trip To Moscow

Afghanistan’s government has lodged a complaint with the UN over a recent trip by members of the Taliban to Moscow.

The Afghan government has said that Russia allowed the members of the Taliban to enter the country despite them being on the UN’s blacklist.

Led by Taliban’s chief negotiator Mohammad Abbas Stanikzai, ten senior officials from the group this week travelled to Moscow for talks with Afghan politicians.

Nazifullah Salarzai, deputy of Afghanistan permanent representative to the UN has confirmed this latest development. 

This comes after presidential spokesman Haroon Chakhansuri on Thursday said the Moscow meeting was a political and academic meeting and will have no impact on the peace process.

The Afghan government also that no one had any executive authority to forge agreements.

“It was a political and academic debate about peace. The declaration which was released at the end of this meeting was the summary of this meeting and will not have any practical or executive outcomes on the peace process,” said Chakhansuri.

Russian arms flood Southeast Asia

BY Matt Bartlett

Russia’s “hard” power is generally well-understood. President Vladimir Putin has ensured this is the case, particularly through his proclivity to showcase Russian strength in Ukraine and Syria. And who could forget Russia’s arsenal of nuclear weapons? Not Donald Trump: just last weekend, Washington cited Russian missile provocations as the reason the US was suspending compliance of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty.

This growing web of arms deals strengthens Russia’s ‘soft’ power by helping bring Asian states into Moscow’s sphere of influence.

On the other hand, new data from the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) suggests a rather different dimension of Russian power: being the key provider of arms and military technology to the Asia-Pacific region. This “soft” power is much less obvious than Russian military movements but carries its own array of geopolitical consequences.

How China and the U.S. Are Competing for Young Minds in Southeast Asia

Kristine Lee

Business leaders at the World Economic Forum in Davos last month warned that China has overtaken the United States in the development of artificial intelligence and other emerging technologies, such as fifth-generation wireless or 5G. “There’s almost an endless stream of people who are showing up and developing new companies,” Blackstone’s CEO Stephen Schwarzman told one panel of his frequent trips to China. “The venture business there in AI-oriented companies is really exploding with growth.” 

The attention on China’s rapidly evolving tech sector has overshadowed another area of competition between Beijing and Washington, which may be moving more slowly but is just as consequential: the battle for young minds. Nowhere is this competition to educate and attract younger generations more pronounced than in Southeast Asia, with its youthful demographics, fast-growing economies and array of geopolitical flashpoints.

How competitive is China’s economy on the global stage?

The prosperity of any economy relies on a variety of factors that drive productivity. One way of measuring these elements is by examining competitiveness, which the World Economic Forum (WEF) defines as “the set of institutions, policies and factors that determine the level of productivity of a country.” Importantly, a country’s economic output is highly dependent on the overall well-being of its population and the robustness of its legal institutions.

Pillars of Economic Competitiveness

Perhaps the most visible component of China’s global competitiveness is the size of its economy. Measured in terms of purchasing power, China produced roughly $21 trillionworth of goods and services in 2017, almost $3 trillion more than the US and $16 trillion more than Japan.1 Although the relationship between market size and productivity is multifaceted, the demand for Chinese goods has been at the heart of China’s economic success story.

The Daunting Prospects of a Growing Sino-Russian Entente

Bottom Line Up Front

On January 28, intelligence officials warned of a Sino-Russian entente, with China and Russia more closely aligned than at any point in decades.

A strengthened Moscow-Beijing axis poses serious security challenges to the West in general and to the United States in particular.

The Sino-Russian entente appears across many spheres, including science and technology, military, energy, and foreign policy.

In response to this growing threat, the U.S. must ensure its commitment to diplomacy, alliance maintenance and strengthening multilateral institutions.

The China Dream: Their Goals and Ours


Though the personalities of individual leaders have certainly intensified Sino-American competition, the expectation that China would become a “responsible stakeholder” in a U.S.-led global order was never realistic.

America’s ties with China are now centuries old. The first ship to fly under the United States flag, the merchant ship Empress of China, left New York’s harbor in 1784 bound for Canton to swap American-grown ginseng and silver for Chinese tea. Since then, as U.S. journalist and author John Pomfret has noted, Americans and Chinese have been enchanting each other and disappointing each other in seemingly perpetual cycles.1

From the American perspective, there was the potentially vast Chinese market to tap into, millions of Chinese to preach the Christian Gospel to, and cheap Chinese labor to help build the American West. Conversely, the Chinese saw the Americans as fair traders, when compared with the European mercantilist powers. They saw the U.S. Open Door policy as an attempt to keep China from being broken into pieces.

How Facebook’s Tiny China Sales Floor Helps Generate Big Ad Money

By Paul Mozur and Lin Qiqing 

SHENZHEN — Facebook’s apps and websites have been blocked in China for years. The company has no office in the country that supports its social networking services. And its attempts to open a subsidiary have been quickly snuffed out.

But here in the southern Chinese city of Shenzhen, Facebook has managed to quietly build a presence with the help of a local partner.

In Shenzhen’s Futian district, on the ninth floor of a concrete tower, there is an open-air sales floor that works as a sort of corporate embassy for the social network. The 5,000-square-foot space is run by the local partner, called Meet Social, but has been designed with Facebook’s guidance. It functions as an experience center for the Silicon Valley giant — the only one of its type in the world.

China’s Belt and Road Initiative a global security challenge, say European experts

London [UK], February 8 (ANI): China’s ambitious One Belt One Road (OBOR) initiative is a global security threat, according to conclusions reached by various experts from renowned European think tanks.

Addressing a seminar titled ‘China’s Belt and Road Initiative and its impact on Europe’ held under the aegis of The Democracy Forum (TDF) at London University’s Senate House, TDF President Lord Bruce spoke about the global fears of Chinese hegemony surrounding the Belt and Road Initiative or the BRI.

"Is it simply a trade and security network as conveyed by the Chinese," he wondered, albeit a hugely costly one that comprises at least six geographic corridors, or a ‘multi-headed hydra unashamedly aligned with national self-interest’?

Does China understand Taiwan?

If china’s rulers ever decide to invade Taiwan—a grim but not impossible prospect—they will need good answers to two questions. First, would the People’s Liberation Army win? The consensus in Taipei is that the pla is close to that goal but is not “100% sure” of victory. Second, would ordinary Taiwanese submit?

Chinese leaders have limited patience for Taiwanese opinion. Their offer to the democratic island of 23m is ostensibly generous. Under the slogan “One Country, Two Systems”, Taiwan is promised lots of autonomy alongside access to China’s vast market. This is backed by honeyed words about unifying a family sundered for 70 years, since China’s civil war ended with the losing Nationalist Party, or Kuomintang (kmt) retreating to what they hoped would be temporary exile on Taiwan. Still, China is committed to using force to block any bid for formal independence.

The Communist Party capitalises on foreign interest in Chinese culture

Luo yuquan can barely hide his glee. The Chinese new year jamboree thrown by the China Cultural Centre (ccc) in Tokyo, which he heads, has gone swimmingly. Ethnic-Tibetan singers flown in from China enchanted the audience, many of whom danced along to the catchy tunes. Copious Tsingtao beer helped sustain the high spirits. An exhibition in an adjoining room featured paintings with Buddhist themes, also shipped in from China. “We are proud to show off 5,000 years of Chinese civilisation!” beams Mr Luo, “As more Japanese come to appreciate Chinese culture, they will naturally grow to love China.”

Chinese officials often declare that China has a 5,000-year history. In truth, that is overstating things by about 1,000 years. Yet the myth serves a useful purpose for the Communist Party. At home, it is a source of national pride. Abroad, it justifies a sort of Chinese exceptionalism. Xi Jinping, the president, told the visiting Donald Trump, his American counterpart, that China’s is the world’s oldest continuous civilisation. China routinely invokes its awesome history as grounds to continue charting its own development path. Don’t expect China to embrace Western ideas about democracy, the logic goes, for China has always been on its own unique course.

After the caliphate: Has IS been defeated?

President Donald Trump expects to announce soon that the United States and its partners have reclaimed the last pocket of territory in Syria controlled by the jihadist group Islamic State, bringing a formal end to the "caliphate" it proclaimed in 2014.

IS once controlled 88,000 sq km (34,000 sq miles) of territory stretching from western Syria to eastern Iraq, imposed its brutal rule on almost eight million people, and generated billions of dollars in revenue from oil, extortion, robbery and kidnapping.

Now, between 1,000 and 1,500 militants are believed to be left in a 50 sq km (20 sq mile) area in the Middle Euphrates River Valley, near Syria's border with Iraq, which is under attack by fighters from the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) alliance.

Using Blockchain: A Strategic Roadmap for Companies

Bitcoin may be getting the headlines, but what makes companies more excited is the blockchain, the decentralized ledger technology that underpins cryptocurrencies. It has the potential to revolutionize everything from financial settlements on Wall Street to global supply chains. But like any promising innovation, there’s also plenty of hype that comes along with it.

Saikat Chaudhuri, executive director of the Mack Institute for Innovation Management at Wharton, wades through the hyperbole to discover the true promise of the blockchain and presents strategies on how companies must approach this technology to be successful. He offers a roadmap for companies to follow as they consider adopting the blockchain.

Chaudhuri’s analysis is encapsulated in the white paper, ‘Making Sense of Blockchain: How Firms Can Chart a Strategic Path Forward,’ which he co-authored with Mack research associate Pragna Kolli, Jitin Jain, a recent Wharton MBA who is now director of products at Bankex, as well as Penn Blockchain Club founders Abhinav Prateek and Nate Rush. Chaudhuri recently joined Knowledge@Wharton to talk about their findings. (Listen to the podcast at the top of the page.)

The Key to Post-World War II US Strategic Thinking About Japan

By Robert Farley

How did the United States go about planning for Phase IV of the Pacific War?

Of course, Phase IV of U.S. World War II planning never existed, at least by that term. However, after the invasion of Iraq the term became short-hand for post-war reconstruction, or for failure to plan for post-war reconstruction. In contrast to the situation with Iraq, U.S. analysts began planning for the reconstruction and reintegration of Japan from even before the war began. As detailed by Dayna Barnes in Architects of Occupation (reviewed here by a group of scholars), the planning process included the State Department, the military, and the 1940s version of the think tank community. Although fraught with tension and difficulty, the process managed to restore Japan’s place in the international community while also largely demilitarizing its society.

Private Military and Security Companies as Tools of Strategy

By: Nikolai F. Rice, Columnist

Private Military and Security Companies (PMSCs) are the modern iteration of private force. Despite a two-century anti-mercenary norm PMSC proliferation has been facilitated by global political, economic, and warfare evolutions.[i] This article briefly examines why and how the United States, Russia, and China rely on and support the 21st century private force renaissance. The United States is no longer the majority employer of global private force and understanding how adversarial states utilize PMSCs for strategic objectives can illuminate what their strategic objectives are, what additional means they might employ to achieve them, and whether they are willing to escalate peripheral objectives into more expensive conflicts.

The American “Contractor”

Europe in 2019: A Critical and Transitional Year


For European countries and institutions as well as for transatlantic relations, 2019 will be a pivotal year. With several important leadership, policy, and structural transitions taking place in capitals and Brussels, there will be instability and uncertainty but from this could stem more positive dynamics. While the twists and turns of events remain unpredictable, what follows is a quick take on some of the most significant events on the European and transatlantic security and defense calendar for 2019 and the important stakes that are at play.

U.S.-Saudi Arabia Relations

The U.S.-Saudi Arabia alliance is built on decades of security cooperation and strong business ties dominated by U.S. interests in Saudi oil. The relationship has survived severe challenges, including the 1973 oil embargo and 9/11 attacks, in which fifteen of the nineteen passenger jet hijackers were Saudi citizens. Successive U.S. administrations have held that Saudi Arabia is a critical strategic partner in the region.

Relations between the two countries have grown especially warm under U.S. President Donald J. Trump and Saudi de facto leader Mohammed bin Salman, who was elevated to crown prince in mid-2017. Both have ramped up efforts to counter Iran, Saudi Arabia’s main regional rival. However, recent actions under the crown prince’s leadership, particularly the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, are posing new strains on the alliance, as many members of the U.S. Congress have called for punishing Riyadh and reassessing the relationship.

E Pluribus Unum? The Fight Over Identity Politics

Stacey Y. Abrams

Recent political upheavals have reinvigorated a long-running debate about the role of identity in American politics—and especially American elections. Electoral politics have long been a lagging indicator of social change. For hundreds of years, the electorate was limited by laws that explicitly deprived women, African Americans, and other groups of the right to vote. (Efforts to deny voting rights and suppress voter turnout continue today, in less overt forms but with the same ill intent.) When marginalized groups finally gained access to the ballot, it took time for them to organize around opposition to the specific forms of discrimination and mistreatment that continued to plague them—and longer still for political parties and candidates to respond to such activism. In recent decades, however, rapid demographic and technological changes have accelerated this process, bolstering demands for inclusion and raising expectations in communities that had long been conditioned to accept a slow pace of change. In the past decade, the U.S. electorate has become younger and more ethnically diverse. Meanwhile, social media has changed the political landscape. Facebook captures examples of inequality and makes them available for endless replay. Twitter links the voiceless to newsmakers. Instagram immortalizes the faces and consequences of discrimination. Isolated cruelties are yoked into a powerful narrative of marginalization that spurs a common cause.

The Irish Border Question

What will Ireland look like after Brexit? 

With less than two months to go before the United Kingdom is supposed to leave the European Union, the Irish border issue remains unresolved. The Republic of Ireland and the EU have been adamant that there cannot be a border separating the Irish Republic from Northern Ireland. Instead, they have proposed the so-called backstop, which would effectively keep Northern Ireland in the EU’s single market, while both Northern Ireland and Britain would remain in a customs union with the EU “unless and until” they reach a deal that removes the need for the backstop. Northern Ireland’s Democratic Unionist Party has fiercely opposed the idea and any other solution that would treat Northern Ireland differently from Britain.

Calls to hold a vote over what to do with the Irish border have gained momentum. Last weekend, Mary Lou McDonald, head of the Republic of Ireland’s nationalist Sinn Fein party, called for Northern Ireland to begin preparing for a border poll. The DUP has rejected the idea, referring to McDonald’s suggestion as “nothing but stunt politics.” It remains to be seen whether the politicians or the people will be the ones to make the final decision. 

Stanford looks to AI for orbital garbagemen

By: Kelsey D. Atherton 

Space is vast, but the useful part of space is getting crowded. Orbital debris is a side effect of keeping satellites in space, and it’s a finicky problem. All the value in orbit is in adding new objects; the debris and leftovers and discard husks of no-longer-functioning satellites are something of an externality. To clean up orbit, researchers at Stanford’s Space Rendezvous Lab are collaborating with the European Space Agency to create a sort of robotic orbital garbageman.

Key to any effort to clean up space hulks in orbit will be successful identification of the derelict objects. To that end, the Space Rendezvous Lab (SLAB) and ESA are hosting a competition for people to submit algorithms that correctly identify space junk. Without an existing catalog of debris to look at, graduate student Sumant Sharma and professor Simone D’Amico created 16,000 images to replicate the likely appearance of the space objects.

Harnessing David and Goliath: Orthodoxy, Asymmetry, and Competition

Joe Miller, Monte Erfourth, Jeremiah Monk and Ryan Oliver

Centuries ago in the Valley of Elah, Goliath swept his eye across the field between his Philistine army and towards Saul, standing in front of the Israelite Army. As he had done for each of the past forty days, Goliath called for an Israeli challenger. The call went unheeded, until a youth stepped forward. Saul, the king and leader of the Israeli army and cowed in fear by the giant, looked in shock at the youth who had accepted the call to single combat. Saul, second in power only to Goliath, offered his armor to the nearly naked young man, which he declined. The youth, David, untested by war and a mere shepherd, had surveyed the enormous armor-clad warrior at the head of the Philistines with his enormous spear and instantly saw weakness. Loading a smooth stone into his sling, a sling that had felled lions and bears, David judged the distance and aimed for the giant’s forehead. David heaved and struck true. Within seconds, Goliath lay dead at his countrymen's feet. Undeterred by the ostensibly impossible challenge, the youth ended the reign of fear imposed by the seemingly invincible giant. David saw what others had not, that victory would not come by matching strength with strength. Victory was won by using his strength against the giant's vulnerability... 


This is how AI bias really happens—and why it’s so hard to fix

by Karen Hao

Bias can creep in at many stages of the deep-learning process, and the standard practices in computer science aren’t designed to detect it.

Over the past few months, we’ve documented how the vast majority of AI’s applications today are based on the category of algorithms known as deep learning, and how deep-learning algorithms find patterns in data. We’ve also covered how these technologies affect people’s lives: how they can perpetuate injustice in hiring, retail, and security and may already be doing so in the criminal legal system.

But it’s not enough just to know that this bias exists. If we want to be able to fix it, we need to understand the mechanics of how it arises in the first place.
How AI bias happens

The Pocket-Sized Black Hornet Drone Is About To Change Army Operations Forever

by Joseph Trevithick

After more than four years of experimentation and evaluation, the U.S. Army is beginning to send out FLIR Systems’ tiny Black Hornet nano drones to operational units, which will fundamentally change how the service conducts itself on the battlefield. The miniature unmanned helicopter will give the elements as small as infantry squads a significant boost in situational awareness and allow them to scout ahead without having to automatically put soldiers at risk.

On Jan. 9, 2019, the Army revealed that the Soldier Sensors and Lasers (SSL) division of Rock Island Arsenal’s Joint Manufacturing and Technology Center (RIA-JMTC) had delivered the first 60 complete Black Hornet systems to unspecified units. Then, on Jan. 24, 2019, FLIR Systems announced it had received a contract worth up to $39.6 million to deliver thousands more of the drones to the service, along with associated equipment, in the coming years.

Private Equity in India: What Excites Investors?

The private equity industry in India has evolved over the past two decades from nascent levels to a size and sophistication that global investors find attractive. PE investors in the country also find it encouraging that more teams of professional managers are available than earlier to run the businesses they target. Outcomes at those companies are decidedly better when those managers have some equity skin in the game.

Yet, India’s PE industry faces hurdles such as the absence of a well-developed capital market that would allow firms to leverage their equity with borrowings and thus put more money to work in the businesses they target. Regulatory obstacles and sudden changes to government policies are also common, and PE investors have learned to anticipate those. They also have the occasional brush with opacity or integrity issues with the existing managements at some of their target firms. A panel of executives heading the Indian arms of global of PE investment firms discussed those and other trends at the Wharton India Economic Forum held in early January in Mumbai, adding that they shared those views in their personal capacity, and not on behalf of their companies.

How Did We Really Lose the Vietnam War?

Stephen B. Young

The substance of this comment is taken from a draft manuscript written with Ellsworth Bunker, former American Ambassador in Saigon, 1967 – 1973.

In his State of the Union Address, President Trump sought to legitimate his negotiations with the Taliban over the future of Afghanistan with the argument that the Taliban were happy to negotiate with him. Of course, they are happy to do so. Through negotiations they will finally be in a position to take over Afghanistan - just as the North Vietnamese finally won the Vietnam War thanks to their private negotiations with Henry Kissinger – when there were no South Vietnamese present to prevent him from selling them out.

North Vietnamese Army Colonel Bui Tin, whom I befriended in the 1990s after he went into exile in Paris, told me that the Communist Party Politburo was very happy to negotiate with Kissinger alone without any Vietnamese nationalists next to him at the table.

Open Source Backgrounder: Djibouti, Foreign Military Bases on the Horn of Africa - Who is There? What are They Up To?

De Faakto Intelligence Research Observatory

Background & Analysis

Djibouti is a small dusty coastal nation on the Horn of Africa that has the distinction of being located at the southern entrance of the Red Sea on route to the Suez Canal and the Gulf of Aden. Djibouti is a mandatory passage way for important maritime trade routes; making it strategic terra firma, sought after by the most powerful militaries in the world. Djibouti is ideal for navel security operations, anti-piracy patrols, counter terror drone strikes, air force operations, counter terror special operations, intelligence-surveillance, peacekeeping & humanitarian aid. (Politico, 2018) With bases in Djibouti nations can protect commerce and trade, guard maritime oil shipping routes and facilitate extraction missions for expatriates working abroad. Djibouti is close to hotbeds of turmoil in Africa. Countries like Somalia, and Yemen in the Middle East, necessitate the need for proximal military bases. (BBC, 2018) Furthermore, Djibouti presents a battle space, suitable for proxy war, far from opposing homelands should a conflict occur between nations garrisoned there. (Politico, 2018) The central government of Djibouti leases prime military property to the United States, China, France, Italy and Japan and will soon host Saudi Arabia and is considering India. (Reuters, 2016) In return for leased military bases the barren nation with few natural resources, receives cash, business opportunities and infrastructure. (Politico, 2018)

Army R&D Chief: ‘I Don’t Think We Went Far Enough’ – But Futures Command Can


Maj. Gen. Cedric Wins

UPDATED with Army Secretary comment & lead lab list WASHINGTON: For a man in the middle of an institutional earthquake, Maj. Gen. Cedric Wins is pretty serene.

Other Army officers and civil servants are unsettled by the Army’s largest reorganization in 45 years: One, Lt. Gen. Eric Wesley, has said only half in jest that the break-up of long-established commands made him “feel like the child of divorced parents.” But from Wins’ perspective, when the organization he’s led for 31 months changed its name, its mission, and the four-star headquarters it works for, it finally found the answer to a question it – and the entire Army – have been struggling with for at least 16 years.

Lt. Gen. Eric Wesley

What was, until last week, the Research, Development, & Engineering Command (RDECOM) “was formed right after 9/11,” Wins recalled. The goal back then, he said, was to unite “seven disparate [and] very independent” Army research centers to urgently deliver new technology to troops facing new dangers in Afghanistan. But, Wins told me and a fellow reporter this afternoon, “as we formed the organization way back, I don’t think we went far enough [towards] unity of command.”