15 November 2021

India in Space Domain - Pathbreaking Developments

Maj Gen PK Mallick, VSM (Retd)


India is now a major spacefaring nation. Initially, the Indian space programme was focused primarily on societal and developmental utilities. Today, like many other countries, India is compelled to use space for several military requirements like intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance. Hence, India is looking to space to gain operational and informational advantages.

India has had its fair share of achievements in the space domain. It includes the launch of the country’s heaviest satellite, the GSAT-11 which will boost India’s broadband services by enabling 16 Gbps data links across the country, GSAT-7A, the military communication satellite and the launch of the Geo-synchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle GSLV Mk III-D2, the GSAT 29. The Anti-Satellite (ASAT) test is an intrinsic part of today’s geopolitics and the national security context.

Deterrence Theory– Is it Applicable in Cyber Domain?

 Maj Gen PK Mallick, VSM (Retd)


The Deterrence Theory was developed in the 1950s, mainly to address new strategic challenges posed by nuclear weapons from the Cold War nuclear scenario. During the Cold War, the U.S. and the Soviet Union adopted a survivable nuclear force to present a ‘credible’ deterrent that maintained the ‘uncertainty’ inherent in a strategic balance as understood through the accepted theories of major theorists like Bernard Brodie, Herman Kahn, and Thomas Schelling.1 Nuclear deterrence was the art of convincing the enemy not to take a specific action by threatening it with an extreme punishment or an unacceptable failure.

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China’s Land Border Law is more sinister than it lets on. India needs a course correction


Acryptic reference to a “100-home civilian village” constructed by China in Arunachal Pradesh “sometime in 2020” in the United States Department of Defense (DoD)’s annual report to Congress on ‘Military and Security Developments Involving the People’s Republic of China’, brought the issue back into focus after nearly a year. The debate then and now centred on the peripheral issue of whether the village was constructed on Indian territory under Chinese occupation since 1959 or if it has happened under the watch of the Narendra Modi government in power since 2014.

The larger issue of China’s strategy to assert its sovereignty with respect to disputed territories through management/development of its borders areas has not got the attention it deserves. This ongoing process has recently been formalised into a “Land Border Law” enacted on 23 October 2021.

The rise of IS-K militancy

Syed Irfan Ashraf

AFTER the US troop withdrawal from Afghanistan, the Af-Pak region now faces the resurgence of the Islamic State’s Khorasan chapter, raising fears of another round of conflict. Both in Pakistan and Afghanistan, IS-K attacks have become a regular feature. After the emergence of IS in ex-Fata in 2015, its fighters were pushed across the border during the Zarb-i-Azb operation, but attacks continued despite the killing of IS chief Hafiz Saeed Khan (ex-TTP commander in former Fata) in a US drone strike.

One estimate says this outfit carried out 38 attacks from May 2019 to the end of 2020. Subsequently, scores of IS fighters were arrested in joint US and Afghan intel operations, forcing others to hide in the Kunar and Nangarhar provinces. This led to a turf war between the Afghan Taliban and IS which is continuing. According to a UN estimate, IS fighters don’t number more than 2,000, but still carried out 77 attacks in the first four months of 2021. The group’s audacity has threatened the Taliban who curiously downplay the challenge, blaming it on the US. But they know IS’s emergence is an alternative option for Taliban dissidents. The current TTP understanding with the Pakistani state depends upon this factor: a lenient approach by the TTP leadership might swell IS ranks.

The Laws of War Don’t Apply to the Kabul Drone Strike

Charli Carpenter

Last week, the U.S. Department of Defense released a one-page summary of its findings from an investigation into a drone strike in Kabul that killed a family of 10 during the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan. U.S. military officials had received intelligence that a specific car had visited a “suspected” Islamic State safehouse and loaded what “appeared to be” explosives into its trunk.

After the vehicle was destroyed with explosives in the driveway of the house, it was determined that the driver was actually Zemari Ahmadi, an electrical engineer who worked for a U.S. aid organization. Ahmadi was killed in the attack, and nine members of his family, including seven children who had come out of the house to greet their father, also died of their injuries, including burns and shrapnel. A New York Times investigation later showed that the luggage loaded into Ahmadi’s car was likely water cannisters.

The DoD’s statement absolved those involved of responsibility for the “regrettable” civilian deaths. As the report notes, “Individuals directly involved in the strike interviewed during the investigation believed at the time that they were targeting an imminent threat. The overall threat to U.S. forces at [the Hamid Karzai International Airport] at the time was very high. Intel indicated attacks were imminent. The investigation found no violation of law, including the Law of War.”


Jack MacLennan and James R. Horncastle

Since the completion of the US withdrawal from Afghanistan in August, two frames have defined the debate surrounding why the accompanying Taliban offensive was so quick and so effective. First, the US withdrawal precipitated a Taliban victory. Having outstayed the US intervention (which many argue was made more likely by repeated attempts to set a specific withdrawal date for military forces), the Taliban was able to realize its goal of taking control of the Afghan state. Second, the Taliban’s successful rout of the Afghan National Army (ANA) and the abandonment of the country by the government of Ashraf Ghani signaled a reversion to pre-intervention Afghanistan. Each of these are wide of the mark.

Taliban control was precipitated by, and will now be contested because of, the fractured character of military force in the country. The Taliban was able to successfully contest both the ANA and US control of the country for much of the last five years. In large swaths of territory, either Taliban control was effectively complete, a steady back and forth between ANA and Taliban control ensured any real form of political control was unattainable for either side (which in effect amounts to gain for the Taliban), or the Taliban was at least able to harass government forces to ensure they were in a constant state of stress. Irrespective of the capacity of the ANA this constant stress hobbled the operational effectiveness of what looked to be (on paper) a strong military force. Regardless of the Biden administration’s rhetoric, it’s not that the ANA could fight and didn’t. Fatality and casualty rates among ANA units over the last few years attest to a willingness to fight against the Taliban, meaning the largescale collapse was itself a function of the shifting weight of various groups.

Bangladesh-France Relations: PM Hasina’s Visit and Future Prospects

MD Mufassir Rashid

Bangladesh’s Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina is in the middle of a visit to France, set to last from November 9 to 14. It is Hasina’s second visit to France, following her first trip in 1999. During her time in France, Hasina has met the French president, prime minister, and defense minister. According to the foreign minister of Bangladesh, through this visit, Dhaka aims to take the relationship to a new height. To do that, both Bangladesh and France will have to increase their socioeconomic and political cooperation.

Bangladesh-France relations date back to the 17th century, when French merchants came to Bengal. In the Battle of Plassey, the French fought side by side with the last sovereign of Bengal, Siraj-Ud-Daulah. After Bangladesh’s independence, both countries have been largely on good terms. Relations were further bolstered with the signing of the Cultural Cooperation Agreement in 1987. In the 1990s, then French President Francois Mitterrand visited Bangladesh. After that, French cooperation helped Bangladesh with dam projects and flood management in the 1990s. In 1999, Sheikh Hasina became the first Bangladeshi prime minister to visit France. Between 1999 and 2021, several ministerial level visits also took place between the countries.

The Porcupine, or the Pit Viper?

Phillip Orchard

China’s breakneck military buildup has generated all sorts of alarm in both Washington and Taiwan. U.S. arms sales to the island have spiked over the past decade accordingly. Taipei is rapidly expanding its indigenous capabilities as well, as illustrated by a $9 billion (or 5.2 percent) jump in defense outlays announced last week. But there are two ongoing, intertwined debates that will define the trajectory of the U.S.-Taiwanese partnership going forward. In Taipei, where there’s widespread concern that the Taiwanese military has become outdated and ill-suited for countering the Chinese threat, the dilemma is how to best structure its military modernization drive. In short, Taiwan is deciding whether to become a “porcupine” – focusing on defensive capabilities aimed at buying time during a Chinese attack – or a “pit viper,” emphasizing the ability to strike back and deter China by raising the political costs at home of an attack. The outcome of this debate will hinge largely on a parallel one taking place in Washington: whether the long-held U.S. policy of “strategic ambiguity” has outlived its usefulness.

Quills Out

On paper, Taiwan has a formidable military. It has more than 160,000 well-armed troops (plus another 1.65 million in reserve) and thousands of armored fighting vehicles and camouflaged, self-propelled artillery pieces. It has a modern, sophisticated air force boasting a fleet of some 140 F-16s. Even its indigenous submarine program is also making notable progress against steep odds.

Chinese orbital bombardment? Don’t panic!


Around this time last month the defense world was sent a tizzy by a reported Chinese hypersonic orbital weapons test. While many questions remain unanswered, Bleddyn Bowen and Cameron Hunter of the University of Leicester have some advice: calm down. The following is an abridged and updated summary of a report published by the Asia-Pacific Leadership Network, which can be read in full here [PDF].

In mid-October a report appeared in the Financial Times that claimed that the Chinese military tested a new missile system in July and August. A rocket launched from China sent a vehicle into orbital flight, later re-entering the atmosphere and releasing a manoeuvrable glide vehicle travelling at hypersonic speeds.

Providing little-to-no explanation, the Chinese government has left ample room for U.S. commentators to assume the worst — a new Chinese ability to bombard the United States from outer space with nuclear weapons.

Renewable Energy in China’s Cross Hairs

Emilio Iasiello


In late October 2020, the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China held its Fifth Plenary Session to set outlines for the government’s new 14th Five-Year Plan (covering the years 2021-2025). A communique was issued at its completion, highlighting the important challenges facing China, and providing broad insight into the priority policy areas China will be pursuing over the next five years, to include renewable energy, among others.[i] Since focusing on the development of green energy industries, China has emerged as a global leader in this area with few peers. China’s climb to the top in renewable energy underscores the importance Beijing places on its Five-Year Plans as critical enablers that ultimately fuel the growth of China’s economy. Renewable energy not only addresses the country’s notorious pollution problems but also demonstrates image-conscious Beijing’s intent to become a global leader in promoting green industries, and by extension, a global supplier of green energy technologies.[ii] As such, China will continue to leverage its intelligence-collection assets, particularly its cyber-enabled economic and industrial espionage to maintain its leadership role in renewable energy. In the past, Chinese espionage activities from state actors as well as Chinese nonstate actors against renewable energy companies to collect sensitive information for economic advantage have helped push them into bankruptcy. Based on the success of these activities, Beijing will continue to rely on these cyber intelligence assets to identify U.S. organizations and businesses involved in the renewable energy lifecycle and execute cyber operations against them with the intent to obtain information related to U.S. national-level policy; international political and/or economic agreements and treaties; corporate intellectual property and proprietary information; trade secrets; or other information Beijing deems important to collect to maintain its position as a leader in Green energy technologies.

Who decides China’s foreign policy?

Dr Yu Jie, Lucy Ridout

This briefing paper challenges the conventional wisdom that China functions as a unitary player in its foreign policymaking process. In reality, Beijing’s approach to external issues is a result of intense bargaining between numerous subnational authorities with a wide range of objectives.

The number of central government institutions, provincial-level authorities and major state-owned enterprises with influence over the country’s foreign policy has increased as China’s international relations have become more complex.

This shift in the decision-making process has opened up an opportunity for specialized government institutions – often with a domestic remit – that can provide specific expertise and knowledge. This paper presents three case studies that demonstrate the influence of these subnational actors.

As the world figures out how to work with China on major global issues, such as climate change, a deeper understanding of the foreign policy decision-making process may hold the key to successful cooperation going forward.

China’s leader Xi warns against ‘Cold War’ in Asia-Pacific


WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — Chinese President Xi Jinping warned Thursday against letting tensions in the Asia-Pacific region cause a relapse into a Cold War mentality.

His remarks on the sidelines of the annual summit of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum came weeks after the U.S., Britain and Australia announced a new security alliance in the region which would see Australia build nuclear submarines. China has harshly criticized the deal.

And in a separate illustration of strains within APEC, one Southeast Asian delegate told The Associated Press that the group had so far failed to reach agreement on a U.S. bid to host the 2023 summit due to unmet demands from Russia.

Xi spoke in a pre-recorded video to a CEO Summit at APEC, which is being hosted by New Zealand in a virtual format. Xi is scheduled to participate in an online meeting with other Pacific Rim leaders including U.S. President Joe Biden on Saturday.

The Inevitable Rivalry: America, China, and the Tragedy of Great-Power Politics

John J. Mearsheimer

It was a momentous choice. Three decades ago, the Cold War ended, and the United States had won. It was now the sole great power on the planet. Scanning the horizon for threats, U.S. policymakers seemed to have little cause for concern—and especially not about China, a weak and impoverished country that had been aligned with the United States against the Soviet Union for over a decade. But there were some ominous signs: China had nearly five times as many people as the United States, and its leaders had embraced economic reform. Population size and wealth are the

Biden was wrong on Afghanistan

Madiha Afzal

To me, as to many, the most haunting images of the end of America’s 20-year war in Afghanistan are those of Afghans crowding an airport runway the day after the fall of Kabul to the Taliban. Afghans running after a U.S. Air Force plane, hanging onto it as it took off, tragically falling to their deaths — those images reflect the desperation, the chaos, and the shock of that day, and foretold the scenes outside the gates of Kabul airport in the days that followed.

But the crisis of the withdrawal was about far more than the enormous task of removing Americans and Afghan allies in August. Lost in all the focus on evacuations was the big picture: the ignominy of the war ending with the Taliban’s return, 20 years after America removed it from power. This was an agonizing outcome given the enormous costs of the war — all the thousands of U.S. and NATO troops lost and money spent, and the scale of the destruction and loss of life of both civilians and Afghan security forces.

The Taliban’s return to power means that this fall the vast majority of Afghan girls have not been allowed to attend secondary school, setting back the gains a generation of girls had enjoyed in Afghanistan’s cities. The country is now on the brink of a humanitarian catastrophe, with nearly 23 million people facing acute food insecurity.

Don’t Blame Belarus. Blame Brussels.

Andrew Connelly

“This is a hybrid attack,” European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen asserted on Twitter on Nov. 10, referring to the thousands of migrants escorted to Poland’s border by the Belarusian regime. “Not a migration crisis.”

It is of course both. But European Union leaders’ refusal to recognize this reality is partly why the EU is facing such chaos.

Six years after the height of Europe’s last refugee crisis, adults and children from warzones and failed states are still squeezed between troops and razor wire asking to be let in. Their appearance on the bloc’s eastern border has been facilitated and coordinated by the security apparatus of Belarusian dictator Aleksandr Lukashenko, who is reeling from EU sanctions against him for gross human rights violations against his own people. But the EU’s panic-stricken, warlike approach to a manageable migration problem is precisely what makes its dysfunctional system so ripe for exploitation by hostile actors.

Lukashenko does not care about migrants’ protection or the roots of their displacement, but Europe should.

The big hurdle to jump-starting solar, wind energy and electric cars

Jonah Bader

(CNN)To tackle climate change, humanity will need to dig deep. Literally.

Although our planet's surface is blessed with an endless supply of sunshine and wind, we have to build solar panels and wind turbines to harness all that energy -- not to mention batteries to store it. That will require vast quantities of raw materials from beneath the earth's surface. Worse, green technologies rely on certain key minerals that are often scarce, concentrated in a few countries and difficult to extract.

This is no reason to stick with dirty fossil fuels. But few people realize the huge resource demands of renewable energy. A recent report from the International Energy Agency warned: "The transition to clean energy means a shift from a fuel-intensive to a material-intensive system."

Consider the low-mineral requirements of high-carbon fossil fuels. A natural gas power plant with one megawatt of capacity -- enough to power over 800 homes -- takes about 1,000 kg of minerals to build. For a coal plant of the same size, it's about 2,500 kg. A megawatt of solar power, by comparison, requires almost 7,000 kg of minerals, while offshore wind uses more than 15,000 kg. Keep in mind, sunshine and wind aren't always available, so you have to build more solar panels and wind turbines to generate the same annual electricity as a fossil fuel plant.

The World Is Failing To Rid Itself of Coal

Frank Dohmen, Georg Fahrion, Claus Hecking, Jan Puhl, Fritz Schaap and Gerald Traufetter

The contradictions on this planet seem even more confusing these days than usual. In Glasgow, Scotland, around 25,000 politicians, activists and advisers are trying to figure out a way to save the global climate.

The meeting is taking place in a hall with a large globe hanging from the ceiling. Blue, green and majestic, it looks like the promise of a bright future. Speaking a the summit, outgoing German Chancellor Angela Merkel heralded a "decade of action.”

And then there’s this country road in China’s Inner Mongolia region near the city of Ordos, where coal dust blows in patterns on the asphalt as if it were snow. The powder coats the branches of the puny fir trees that stand at the edge of the road. It coats the trucks thundering through in black, one truck after another, dozens, hundreds. They load their freight at the coalfield that begins less than a five-minute drive past the city limits.

The people dilemma: How human capital is driving or constraining the achievement of national AI strategies

Samar Fatima, Gregory S. Dawson, Kevin C. Desouza, and James S. Denford

In the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic (June 2020), LinkedIn released a report showing that the demand for AI skills had cooled down—but by October 2020, demand had already come roaring back. This is not surprising: according to the 2020 RELX Emerging Tech Executive Report, AI adoption soared during the pandemic, and a staggering 68% of companies increased their AI investment during the year. Further, 81% of companies now report using AI technologies, up 33 percentage points since 2018.

Companies are increasingly using AI technologies on mission-critical applications, which has led to an explosion in the need for data scientists and technologists to build and support these applications. Not surprisingly, 39% of companies now cite a lack of technology expertise as a leading stumbling block to AI usage and adoption.

Despite the value of machine learning, much of AI development is still predicated on two pillars: technologies and human capital availability. Our prior reports for Brookings, “How different countries view artificial intelligence” and “Analyzing artificial intelligence plans in 34 countries,” detailed how countries are approaching national AI plans, and how to interpret those plans. In our most recent follow-up piece, “Winners and losers in the fulfillment of national artificial intelligence aspirations,” we discussed how different countries were fulfilling their aspirations along technology-oriented and people-oriented dimensions. In this, our first follow-up analysis, we dive more deeply into the people dimension of our typology, paying close attention to skills gap and attainment.

Belarus Is Laying Tinder for a War. How Will NATO Respond?


Belarus Is Laying Tinder for a War. How Will NATO Respond?

If you wanted to cause a war, here’s a formula with high odds of success. Send thousands of migrants to your border, have your border force try to push them into a neighboring country, and fire warning shots when your neighbor’s soldiers try to keep the migrants out. In such a tense situation, the other country’s soldiers might misinterpret the shots and fire back. At Belarus’s border with Poland, such an accidental conflict is now a concrete risk. What will NATO do if it comes to pass?

“The potential for escalation is extremely high,” Estonia’s defence minister, Kalle Laanet, told a defense conference on Nov. 10.

The situation on Belarus’s border with Latvia, Lithuania, and especially Poland was, in fact, already escalating. For weeks, Belarusian authorities had been arranging for migrants to fly to Minsk and then transporting them to the border, where the migrants tried to illegally enter the three neighboring countries. But over the weeks the migrants had grown bolder, or more desperate, as all three countries reinforced their borders with barbed wire and more guards. As Laanet spoke, crowds were again trying to force their way into Poland. Some of the migrants were using shovels and felled trees to try to bring down the fence now protecting the border, and others were being shoved by Belarusian forces.

UK, French officials gather to decide future of missile technologies


NICE, France: With an eye on developing “generation after next” missiles, government and industry leaders from France and the UK recently gathered to coordinate how to invest their research and development money.

The meeting, held here Oct. 27-28, was the final gathering of a working partnership called the Materials and Components for Missiles Innovation and Technology Partnership (MCM ITP). Launched in 2007, the MCM ITP successfully completed 180 projects to identify next-generation material and components for missiles, and has already been exploited for future missile programs including the Future Cruise/Anti-Ship Weapon.

Representatives from the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD), Defence and Science Technology Laboratory (DSTL), French Defence Procurement Agency (DGA) and industry partners — including MBDA, Thales and Leonardo — were on hand to discuss the technologies that would be transitioning into the next stage of the working group, known as the Complex Weapons ITP.

Why the Chip Shortage Drags On and On … and On

THE SEMICONDUCTOR INDUSTRY lives at the cutting edge of technological progress. So why can’t it churn out enough chips to keep the world moving?

Nearly two years into pandemic-caused disruptions, a severe shortage of computer chips—the components at the heart of smartphones, laptops, and innumerable other products—continues to affect manufacturers across the global economy.

Automakers have been forced to halt production in recent months as sales decline because they can’t make enough cars. The shortage has affected industries from game consoles and networking gear to medical devices. In October, Apple blamed chip scarcity for crimping its financial results, and Intel warned that the drought will likely stretch to 2023.

In short, the semiconductor supply chain has become stretched in new ways that are deeply rooted and difficult to resolve. Demand is ballooning faster than chipmakers can respond, especially for basic-yet-widespread components that are subject to the kind of big variations in demand that make investments risky.

Britain’s Uncertain Future After Brexit

In July 2019, three years after British voters narrowly voted to leave the European Union in a 2016 referendum, Boris Johnson assumed the office of prime minister amid a political environment characterized by anger, turmoil and confusion. But despite initial stumbles that led some observers to predict he would suffer the same dismal fate as his predecessor, Theresa May, Johnson managed to deliver on his promise to renegotiate the U.K.’s transitional withdrawal agreement with the European Union. His subsequent decisive victory in December 2019 parliamentary elections, built in part on successfully wooing traditional Labour party voters, gave Johnson the ample majority he needed to see his deal through.

Before Johnson’s triumph, Brexit had been a disaster for both of the country’s two main political parties. The referendum outcome immediately brought down the Conservative government of former Prime Minister David Cameron, who had called for the vote in the first place. His successor, May, was felled by her inability to get the transitional withdrawal agreement she negotiated with Brussels through Parliament, mainly due to opposition by extremist Brexiteers within her own Tory ranks. For his part, Johnson achieved what May couldn’t, arriving at a transitional Brexit deal that a majority of Parliament could agree on—and then building on that majority in December 2019.

Turkey curbs flights to Belarus to ease migrant crisis

Robin Emmott and Tuvan Gumrukcu

BRUSSELS/ANKARA, Nov 12 (Reuters) - Turkey banned Syrian, Yemeni and Iraqi citizens from flights to Minsk on Friday, potentially closing off one of the main routes that the EU says Belarus has used to fly in migrants by the thousand to engineer a humanitarian crisis on its frontier.

Thousands of migrants from the Middle East are sheltering in freezing conditions in the woods on the border between Belarus and EU states Poland and Lithuania, which are refusing to let them cross. Some have already died and there are fears for the safety of the rest as bitter winter conditions settle in.

The European Union accuses Minsk of creating the crisis as part of a "hybrid attack" on the bloc - distributing Belarusian visas in the Middle East, flying in the migrants and pushing them to cross the border illegally. Brussels may impose new sanctions as early as Monday on Belarus and airlines it blames for ferrying the migrants. 

A Greener Russia? Moscow’s Agenda at the COP26 Climate Summit

Anastasia Likhacheva

As the COP26 UN climate change summit takes place in Glasgow, our planet’s prospects look bleak. Glaciers are melting, the space left for sustainable land use is in short supply, forest fires and desertification look set to become the grim new normal, and the seasonal patterns of the great rivers will turn densely populated areas of Asia into the main sources of climate migrants.

These environmental processes did not start just yesterday, and will not end tomorrow, but their political dimension emerged relatively recently, and is gathering pace at lightning speed. In the last couple of years, a number of countries have suddenly woken up to the climate emergency thanks to a series of crises since the start of the decade.

As a result, the summit in Glasgow, which had been expected to yield a voluntary and consensual increase in individual countries’ obligations to reduce emissions, began in a very different atmosphere to that envisioned by its organizers. It’s taking place against the backdrop of the pandemic, an acute energy crisis, and an impending crisis of food supplies, all as the leading countries’ ability to reach a binding agreement on anything is worse than at any point in the last thirty years.

Countering Sudan’s Coup

Alex de Waal

Coming just two years after Sudan’s historic democratic transition, the October 25 coup by the Sudanese army has halted the country’s faltering steps toward stability. In the weeks since seizing control of the government, General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, the head of the Sudanese Armed Forces, has dissolved civilian institutions and kept deposed Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok and other leading politicians under detention. Meanwhile, tens of thousands of Sudanese have courageously taken to the streets in protest and staged a general strike amid food shortages and rampant inflation.

As significant, however, may be what Burhan’s actions mean for U.S. diplomacy in the region. In contrast to his predecessor, President Joe Biden has made the Horn of Africa a priority, appointing a special envoy, Jeffrey Feltman, to develop and implement a strategy to bring peace to the troubled region. The United States had also supported Sudan’s nascent democracy with financial aid, loan guarantees, and assistance to institution building and security-sector reform. Yet the coup caught Washington seemingly by surprise, occurring just hours after Feltman met with Burhan in Khartoum and stressed Washington’s strong commitment to the existing agreements between the civilian and military leaderships.

What Worked, What Didn't at Army’s Second Connect-Everything Experiment


YUMA PROVING GROUND, Arizona—If last year’s edition of the U.S. Army’s massive connect-everything experiment was a proof of concept, this year’s was a far bigger effort to see just how much those data-sharing concepts might accelerate major military campaigns.

“I’ve seen exponential progress since last year,” said Army Chief of Staff Gen. James McConville at a media roundtable here on Tuesday. “What I’ve seen is the ability to move data. The ability to have speed, range, convergence to get the speed for decision dominance [was] significantly improved.”

In just its second year, Project Convergence has become the U.S. military’s most important experimentation effort for testing out new technologies for joint all-domain command and control, or JADC2. This year’s version featured 110 technologies, triple that of last year. It involved more personnel, including 82nd Airborne Division troops and others from Navy, Marines and Space Force and drew in participants from Fort Bragg, North Carolina, to the White Sands Missile range, and yet it simulated an even larger battleground in the INDOPACOM area of responsibility.

‘Blue Angels for geeks’: Inside the Navy’s plan to ‘hack’ its own unmanned strategy


WASHINGTON: The Navy next week plans to challenge hundreds of outsiders to a series of tests to see if, and how, they can evade, break, or even take over the service’s unmanned systems. If it goes well, the service will walk away with its methods ransacked and a whole lot of homework for the admirals to do about shoring up its unmanned strategy before it’s called on to face a real adversary.

“There is no admiral in the fleet today who’s going to go fight with unmanned systems, even in concert with manned platforms, until it is proven to them that they can be effective,” Rear Adm. Lorin Selby, chief of naval research and head of the Office of Naval Research, told Breaking Defense in an exclusive Nov. 9 interview. “One of the things ONR has done throughout its history is proven to senior leadership that new technologies can be used in militarily relevant ways to create effects and that is part of what we’re doing.”

That’s where next week’s competition comes in. Branded as “HACKtheMACHINE: Unmanned,” the Nov. 16 event will bring in a variety of groups not usually found in Pentagon Rolodexes to troubleshoot military problems — from vulnerabilities in autonomous navigation software to methods for accelerating acquisition — with cash rewards for the top competitors.

The United States deploys “cyber marines” on future battlefields

The “cyber marines” could be deployed on battlefields in future to reshape conflict zones, using technological warfare to disrupt enemy activities and influence local populations, the USA military he confirmed.

Speaking at C4ISRNET’s CyberCon, Colonel Brian Russell, the commander of the II MEF Information Group, argued that the “cyber marines” Sara in able to operate on the prime lines of conflict with “fix the software on sensors and systems in real weather.”

This ability to respond to technological needs of war in the time will be designed to ensure That military personnel Power “reprogram” equipment in a way who will leave them “get operational results”, that in previously may not have been possible.

Like “Cyber ​​Marines” become more central to the army plans, Russell indicated that the US military would try to use technology warfare to reshape the battlefield. Citing the areas in which the soldiers it could be effective, the Colonel pointed “Influence the venue” population, taking out a enemy network, interrupting the enemy’S kill chain e more. “

Veterans of the Afghanistan war deserve their own parade

Max Boot

Veterans of the Civil War, World War I, World War II and the Gulf War got victory parades. What do the 800,000 veterans of the Afghanistan war get?

They fought with awe-inspiring dedication and great sacrifice across nearly two decades, but in the end could not establish a sustainable status quo. The government of Afghanistan disintegrated in just a matter of days in August. The Taliban — the violent extremists that U.S. troops had been fighting for nearly 20 years — are now in control of the entire country. Tens of thousands of Afghans who worked with U.S. forces have been evacuated, but the majority of those who applied for “Special Immigrant Visas” have been left behind.

The acting interior minister, Sirajuddin Haqqani, is a “specially designated global terrorist” with a $10 million U.S. bounty on his head. The Kabul province’s governor, known as Qari Baryal, is an associate of al-Qaeda who used to carry out deadly attacks against U.S. soldiers and civilians in the capital. There is no way to sugarcoat it: This is what defeat looks like.

It is perfectly understandable for those who served in Afghanistan to wonder on this Veterans Day: Was it worth the lives of 2,352 U.S. service members and the wounding of nearly 21,000 more — to say nothing of the psychological traumas that afflict so many of those who serve in any war? There is no good answer to that question. If it offers any solace to those who served, however, this is not a new dilemma.

I think we should throw those books in a fire’: Movement builds on right to target books

Aaron Blake

Perhaps the most infamous quote of the 2021 Virginia governor’s race — and indeed of any 2021 race — belongs to Democrat Terry McAuliffe: “I don’t think parents should be telling schools what they should teach.”

What many people might not have fully processed is that the quote stemmed from a debate about books in schools. Gov.-elect Glenn Youngkin (R) had attacked McAuliffe for, as governor, vetoing a bill to allow parents to opt their children out of reading assignments they deem to be explicit. The impetus was a famous book from Nobel laureate Toni Morrison, “Beloved,” about an enslaved Black woman who kills her 2-year-old daughter to prevent her from being enslaved herself.

While that effort took place years ago, it was rekindled as a political issue at a telling time. Not only are conservatives increasingly targeting school curriculums surrounding race, but there’s also a building and often-related effort to rid school libraries of certain books.

The effort has been varied in the degree of its fervor and the books it has targeted, but one particular episode this week showed just what can happen when it’s taken to its extremes. Shortly after the election result in Virginia, a pair of conservative school board members in the same state proposed not just banning certain books deemed to be sexually explicit, but burning them.