19 August 2023

Is the dollar being dethroned? India just bought 1M barrels of oil from the UAE using rupees instead of USD for the first time ever — why this could spell doom for the greenback

Bethan Moorcraft

India and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have officially started trading with each other in their local currencies.

The Indian government announced on Monday that the country’s leading petroleum refiner, Indian Oil Corp., used the local rupee to buy one million barrels of oil from the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company — not the U.S. dollar.
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This monumental transaction follows the sale of 25kg of gold from a UAE gold exporter to a buyer in India for around 128.4 million rupees ($1.54 million), according to Reuters.

What could this mean for the U.S. dollar on the world stage?
Trade talks

Last year, India’s central bank revealed a new framework for settling global trade in rupees — an idea that came into fruition last month, when India the world’s third-biggest oil importer and consumer signed two agreements with the UAE.

Watched the Dramatic Rise of Qin Gang — and Never Expected His Sudden Fall


Until recently, Qin Gang was one of China’s most prominent American experts and influential policymakers. But after a mysterious, month-long disappearance from public view, he was unceremoniously ousted from the position of foreign minister in late July.

Few Chinese officials had as rapid a rise as Qin, whom I first met three decades ago when he was a low-level functionary. Qin served as Chinese ambassador to the U.S. for 18 months before being promoted to one of China’s top foreign policy jobs just a year ago, at the age of 56.

One might have thought he was in good stead with the regime. Qin was a so-called “Wolf Warrior diplomat,” one of a group of outspoken Chinese diplomats not shy of criticizing the U.S. sharply and publicly, and unfailingly defending their homeland. The term appeared in 2017 after the hugely popular Chinese movie Wolf Warrior 2, about a special ops hero.

But Qin was a Wolf Warrior diplomat long before the term was coined. As a Foreign Ministry spokesperson, as vice minister of foreign affairs and before he was China’s ambassador in Washington, he was a vigorous hawk toward the United States.

China’s defense minister warns against ‘playing with fire’ on Taiwan during Russia meeting

Simone McCarthy

China’s defence minister Li Shangfu on Tuesday warned against “playing with fire” when it comes to Taiwan in a veiled jab at the United States as he addressed a security conference in Russia.

Speaking at the Moscow Conference on International Security, Li said attempts to “use Taiwan to contain China,” would “surely end in failure,” according to state-run news agency Xinhua.

Li’s comments echoed previous statements by Chinese officials but the location of his speech was significant and symbolic given Moscow’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine.

China’s ruling Communist Party claims the self-governing democracy of Taiwan and has vowed to take control of it, by force if necessary. It has repeatedly castigated American interactions with the island, with which Washington does not have official diplomatic ties, including for the sale of US arms to Taipei.

Li, who was sanctioned by the US in 2018 for purchases of Russian weapons, joined the Moscow security conference as he began a six-day trip to Russia and its close ally Belarus.

Senior defence officials from more than 20 “friendly states,” including Belarus, Iran and Myanmar will also attend the forum, Russian state media previously reported, citing Moscow’s defence ministry, which organizes the annual event. No Western countries were invited, state media said.

China and Russia are waging another Cold War — is the West up to the challenge?


After Imperial Japan started World War II in the Pacific by attacking the United States at Pearl Harbor, Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto reportedly wrote in his diary, “I fear all we have done is to awaken a sleeping giant.”

Less dramatically but just as momentously, communist China’s own aggressive actions against the international system have awakened three long-slumbering giants: the United States, Japan and Europe.

Washington, through President Nixon’s historic opening to China in 1972, led the West in welcoming China into “the family of nations.” Six succeeding administrations, counselled directly or indirectly by Henry Kissinger, Nixon’s junior partner in the original China rapprochement, uncritically followed Kissinger’s advice in his self-selected role as Beijing’s chief Western advocate. China’s foreign minister, Wang Yi, recently said after meeting with him, “U.S. policies towards China require Kissinger-style diplomatic wisdom and Nixon-style political courage.”

American, Asian and European business interests welcomed the economic benefits of low labour costs and the huge Chinese market. As the China coupling expanded and deepened under the “win-win” banner, it blinded Western governments to what was happening to populations under Beijing’s control, to neighbouring countries, and to the rules-based international order. Virtually all in the West were content to look the other way as the good times rolled.

Army looks to de-tangle its networks to combat China’s ‘digitally native’ military


It would be a huge mistake to assume China’s military is as poorly networked as Russia’s, a top Army leader said Tuesday.

They “leapfrog some of the technologies because they didn't have to go from analog to digital, right? As they were building their tanks and their ships and their aircraft, they were essentially native from the get-go,” Young J. Bangs, the Army’s principal deputy assistant secretary for acquisition, logistics, and technology, told an audience at the TechNetCyber conference in Augusta, Georgia.

It’s one big reason the Army must accelerate various efforts, including detangling its network, making data more traceable, and buying software faster than the hardware, he said.

Another is shrinking its electromagnetic signatures. Unless the U.S. military can modernize its data structures to reduce power and emissions, its impressive arsenal of “exquisite” equipment might become more of a liability than an asset, Bangs said.

“Capabilities have now exponentially gotten bigger, require more power, have different signatures, and we are…a Christmas tree when we light up. And so we have to really be focusing on more of the low signature, right? Because our threat, our peer threat in China, they can see us as well as us, arguably, sometimes better [than we can see ourselves.] And when we go and turn on our equipment, we'll just be blaring targets for them, just like Russia is right now in Ukraine.”


Grace Mappes

Ukrainian forces conducted counteroffensive operations on at least three sectors of the front on August 15 and reportedly advanced in Luhansk Oblast and western Zaporizhia Oblast. The Ukrainian General Staff reported that Ukrainian forces continued counteroffensive operations in the Bakhmut, Melitopol (western Zaporizhia Oblast), and Berdyansk (western Donetsk-eastern Zaporizhia Oblast) directions.[1] Coordinates published by a Russian mil blogger on August 15 indicate that Ukrainian forces have advanced south of Dibrova (7km southwest of Kreminna).[2] Geolocated footage posted on August 14 indicates that Ukrainian forces advanced into Robotyne, and further Russian and Ukrainian reporting published on August 15 suggests that Ukrainian forces have committed additional counteroffensive brigades to the western Zaporizhia oblast area.[3] Ukrainian Colonel Petro Chernyk stated that the Ukrainian counteroffensive is advancing slowly in southern Ukraine because Ukrainian forces must overcome a three-echeloned Russian defensive line.[4] Chernyk stated that the Russian line of defence includes a first line of minefields stretching several kilometres wide; a second line with artillery, equipment, and personnel concentrations; and a third line of rear positions meant to preserve resources.[5] Chernyk noted that Ukrainian counterbattery measures are especially important in order to prevent Russian artillery from targeting Ukrainian mine-clearing equipment.[6] Chernyk’s statements are in line with ISW’s previous assessments that Russia’s doctrinally sound elastic defence is slowing Ukrainian forces’ advances in southern Ukraine.[7]

Russian forces conducted a large-scale missile strike against targets mainly in Ukrainian rear areas on the night of August 14-15. The Ukrainian General Staff reported that Russian forces launched 28 missiles, including four Kh-22 anti-ship missiles, 20 Kh-101/555 air-based cruise missiles, and four Kalibr sea-based cruise missiles, at targets throughout Ukraine on the night of August 14-15 and that Ukrainian air defences shot down 16 Kh-101/555 and Kalibr missiles.[8] The Ukrainian General Staff also reported that Russian forces launched eight S-300/400 missiles in ground attack mode at targets in Dnipropetrovsk and Zaporizhia Oblasts.[9] The Russian Ministry of Defense (MoD) claimed that the missile strikes targeted key enterprises in Ukraine’s defence-industrial base.[10] Ukrainian and Russian sources reported

Ultimate Battle: China Shares A Deep Insight Into Its Plans To Counter The US Might With A.I, Sniper Jets & AWACS

Parth Satam

As the world scrambles to solve the ‘China enigma’, speculating how the communist state will fight its next war and struggling to adjust to the unorthodox weapons and doctrines it has introduced, views expressed by its defense scientists provide a peek into how it looks at the battlefield.

China seems to have evolved from its “informationized war” concept to “intelligentized war”, where the primacy of possessing information and an “enhanced situational awareness” can decide the outcome of a battle.

Speaking at a seminar organized by Xinhuanet in early July, Lu Jun, Chief Designer of China’s KJ-2000 early warning aircraft, and Cui Jixian, the Deputy Executive Designer of the KJ-500 early warning aircraft, talked about future airborne warning roles to be distributed between various small and big aircraft and assets.

“A future Airborne Warning and Control System (AWACS) will likely not be one single early warning aircraft, but a cluster of platforms that can accomplish different missions and build an information network,” he said.

The KJ-2000 is based on the Russian 190 ton-class Il-76 large transport aircraft, and the KJ-500 is derived from China’s indigenous 60 ton-class Y-8 medium transport aircraft.

Eyeing Joint Combat Capability

While individual assets like aircraft, submarines, or tanks can deal with their counterparts in war, the key is to integrate all space, aerial, ground, surface, and underwater systems for “joint combat capability.”

“Future AWACS will definitely become an information network system that includes not only one single aircraft, but a cluster of platforms that can either operate together or alone.

These platforms will play their specially designed roles based on the demands of combat missions, with the final goal being winning the war”, Cui said, noting that both large and small AWCAS platforms are future trends.

China driving Marcos deeper into American arms


MANILA – “I’m not aware of any such arrangement or agreement that the Philippines will remove from its own territory its ship,” Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos Jr said when asked about China’s recent request for the removal of the BRP Sierra Madre grounded vessel from the contested Second Thomas Shoal.

“And let me go further: If there does exist such an agreement, I rescind that agreement now,” Marcos added, the latest fusillade in the leader’s tough stand on China amid escalating tensions in the South China Sea.

The Filipino president was responding to claims by the Chinese Foreign Ministry on August 7 following yet another major incident in the maritime area that Manila had “promised several times” to tow the Sierra Madre away “but has yet to act.”

Over the weekend, Philippine authorities released footage showing China Coast Guard ships blocking and harassing Philippine resupply vessels approaching the Second Thomas Shoal, where a detachment of Philippine marines are stationed over the rusty, half-sunken ship.

Iran’s Grand Strategy Has Fundamentally Shifted

Kenneth M. Pollack

Since the 1979 revolution, Iran’s leadership has single-mindedly attempted to dominate the Middle East and drive the United States and Israel out. Throughout, Tehran has relied overwhelmingly on the proverbial stick to do so: trying to subvert the Arab states by blackmail or insurgency while waging a relentless terrorist campaign against the United States and Israel.

Return of Special Warfare Magazine

For many decades members of the special operations community awaited the periodic publication throughout the year of the Special Warfare magazine produced in print and online by the U.S. Army John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center and School (USAJKFSWCS). The finely produced publication provided excellent commentary on doctrine, SOF history, current events, and more for the special operations community.

Over the past few years, the frequency of the publication has diminished and there was quite a break between the last issue and this August 2023 issue. The current issue is only 13 pages long. Past issues were anywhere from 44 pages to over 100 pages long. So I suppose we should manage our expectations! 
Time will tell.

Topics in the August 2023 issue of Special Warfare.

TRADOC’s Training Revolution: TRADOC 50th Anniversary.

ARSOF Heritage Week

Distinguished & Honorary Members of the Regiments

Vietnam-era Medal of Honor Recipient Receives Special Forces Honor

JFK Special Warfare Museum

ARSOF Lineage or Legacy: Which is the right word?

PLA raising fears throughout Asia

Ray Song 

Former Japanese prime minister Taro Aso last week visited Taiwan and spoke at the Ketagalan Forum: Indo-Pacific Security Dialogue in Taipei. He was the highest-ranking former Japanese official to visit Taiwan since the countries severed diplomatic relations in 1972.

Meanwhile, amid the rapid growth of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA), security in the Indo-Pacific region is full of uncertainties.

In the past few years, the PLA has constantly harassed Taiwan. The increased frequency of Chinese warplanes and warships crossing the median line of the Taiwan Strait and entering Taiwan’s air defence identification zone has given the world the impression that Beijing might take unexpected military actions in the Strait.

From this perspective, even though Taiwan and Japan do not have formal diplomatic relations, they are both in the first island chain. Should a military conflict occur in the Strait, the PLA would blockade Taiwan, which would in turn affect Japan’s air and sea security, so Tokyo has great urgency to pay attention to developments in the Strait.

Although New Zealand, in the southern hemisphere, is far from Taiwan, it addressed China in its National Security Strategy released on Aug. 4. The white paper says that “China has become more assertive and more willing to challenge existing international rules and norms.”

The report says that New Zealand should invest more resources in national defence and security. Although the details of any military buildup plan by Wellington have not been disclosed, the policy paper shows that it attaches the same level of importance to security in the Indo-Pacific region as other nations.

Opinion Blinken and Biden are building a foreign policy framework to last

David Ignatius

On the day when the leading Republican presidential candidate was indicted for the fourth time, Secretary of State Antony Blinken was trying to explain some of the pillars of U.S. foreign policy that are meant to endure, no matter what.

Blinken’s description of U.S. diplomacy during an interview on Monday might strike some people as whistling in the dark. But to me, it’s more like an anchor to windward. Who knows what political tempests lie ahead? But at least this administration is trying to foster partnerships and norms of behaviour — in dealing with China, Russia and Ukraine, as well as new challenges such as artificial intelligence — that are broadly based and, hopefully, sustainable.

Blinken began by describing the trilateral summit that President Biden will host with the leaders of Japan and South Korea this weekend at Camp David. Given past enmity between Tokyo and Seoul, this three-way alliance is a small miracle. It’s not an Asian NATO, Blinken said. But it provides a baseline of U.S. nuclear deterrence against threats from North Korea and China — so that Tokyo and Seoul don’t have to build their own bombs.

“This is the pillar in Asia for us,” Blinken said. Though he wouldn’t discuss what the three leaders will announce this weekend, another senior administration official said it would include “steps on data sharing for ballistic missile warning systems and other efforts to counter North Korea’s unlawful [weapons of mass destruction] and missile programs,” as well as new economic, technological and freedom-of-navigation cooperation.

U.S. to Provide Iran Access to $16 Billion in Frozen Funds

The United States moved toward giving Iran access to at least $16 billion in the last few weeks, including $6 billion held in South Korea as part of a prisoner exchange deal and $10 billion held in Iraq to pay off Baghdad’s debts for its purchases of Iranian natural gas. Moreover, the Biden administration has remained silent regarding reports that the administration’s understanding with Iran would include up to an additional $7 billion in special drawing rights (SDR) from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and potentially other cash as well. Washington has also failed to comment on Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian’s visit last week to Japan, where he reportedly requested access to $3 billion in frozen funds.

Expert Analysis

“Congress should be worried about the money we don’t see as much as or more than the money we already see. The Treasury Department needs to come clean on the status of funds for Iran from the IMF, and the State Department needs to comment on whether it is negotiating the release of additional funds currently frozen in Japan.” — Richard Goldberg, FDD Senior Advisor

“Iran is making a play for its frozen funds to be released through an escalatory test of wills in the region and with hostage diplomacy against the country that created the lock-up provisions and sanctions architecture in the first place. Congress should see the moves to unlock these monies as an attempt to avoid oversight and deliver Tehran unearned sanctions relief.” — Behnam Ben Taleblu, FDD Senior Fellow

‘It’s like a bad monster movie’: U.S. officials who helped train Nigerien troops reel from coup


Brig. Gen Moussa Barmou, the American-trained commander of the Nigerien special operations forces, beamed as he embraced a senior U.S. general visiting the country’s $100 million, Washington-funded drone base in June.

Six weeks later, Barmou helped oust Niger’s democratically elected president.

For U.S. military officers and diplomats, it’s become an all-too-familiar — and deeply frustrating — story.

Niger is one of several West African countries where U.S. military-trained officers have seized control since 2021, including Burkina Faso, Guinea, and Mali. Some coup leaders have had close relationships with their American trainers, whose mentorship included lessons on safeguarding democracy and human rights along with military tactics.

“It is hard to not be disappointed,” said retired Gen. Joseph Votel, who led U.S. Special Operations Command from 2014 to 2016, overseeing the U.S. commandos who make up the bulk of military trainers in the region. “Backsliding on democratic values is never a good thing.”

The Biden administration now faces a tricky choice. It has to decide whether to cut off a military partnership considered critical for fighting terrorists in a growing hotbed or find some way to work with the military junta.

The White House is holding out hope that President Mohamed Bazoum — currently under house arrest — will be returned to power. But threats from other West African states and the U.S. haven’t budged Niger’s coup leaders.

Opinion | Throw a penalty flag on Coach Tuberville

Michelle J. Howard ·

Michelle J. Howard is a retired four-star admiral. She was the 38th vice chief of naval operations from 2014 to 2016.

The main entrance to the Pentagon (reserved for the highest level of visitors) is appropriately panelled in dark wood. Among the first items one sees upon arrival are the photos of the Defense Department civilian and military leaders.

The Joint Chiefs of Staff, heads of the services, are hung in a group. When Marine Corps Commandant David H. Berger relinquished his office in July, his photo was taken down but not replaced. Now, there is a blank black spot. The spot is empty because the position of commandant is vacant. Berger’s nominated relief, Gen. Eric M. Smith, has not been confirmed by Congress and is plugging the hole as “acting” commandant. No portrait will be displayed until he is confirmed.

Another photo was blacked out on Aug. 4, when the chief of staff of the Army, Gen. James C. McConville, departed. Adm. Michael M. Gilday, the chief of naval operations, relinquishes his office on Aug. 14. There are more empty spots threatened — visual reminders that absence matters. The Joint Chiefs is a team, and holes in the organization have an impact.

One man, Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-Ala.), is clearing the wall with his blanket refusal to allow military promotions to be voted on as a way of forcing change in Defense Department policies. The department funds travel for military members who seek out-of-state abortions.

Six strategic mistakes the U.S. made in Afghanistan


The Russian invasion of Ukraine has wrought institutional amnesia at the White House, State and Pentagon about the war in Afghanistan. Two years ago this month, Joe Biden ignored his military advisers and abruptly abandoned the country. It was the worst strategic blunder in modern American military history.

There’s plenty of blame to go around for the war — starting, of course, with the Pashtun Taliban, who let Al Qaeda train 10,000 fighters and protected Osama bin Laden while he planned 9/11. The U.S. made six strategic mistakes, however, and that buck stops with the commander-in-chief.

The first strategic mistake was President Bill Clinton’s failure to kill bin Laden. He had the actionable intelligence and opportunity to do so, as many as nine times, from 1998 to 2000. Bin Laden’s terror attacks killed almost 3,000 Americans and marked the start of the war.

A counterterror operation led by the CIA and the Northern Alliance started immediately thereafter. It quickly overthrew the Taliban government, pushing bin Laden and the Taliban leadership into Pakistan. It was a fast, historic, decisive victory, executed on the orders of President George W. Bush. He deserves credit for that strategic decision. The second strategic mistake, however, was his. He failed to order a sustained kinetic campaign against Al Qaeda and Taliban leaders as they found a safe harbour in Pakistan. Later presidents kept the policy. Limiting the Af-Pak war to just the Afghan theatre doomed the conflict to a permanent stalemate.

McCarthy floats stopgap funding to prevent a government shutdown at the end of next month


Washington (AP) — Congressional leaders are pitching a stopgap government funding package to avoid a federal shutdown after next month, acknowledging the House and Senate are nowhere near agreement on spending levels to keep federal operations running.

House Speaker Kevin McCarthy raised the idea of a months-long funding package, known as a continuing resolution, to House Republicans on a members-only call Monday evening, according to those familiar with the private session and granted anonymity to discuss it.

On Tuesday, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said the two leaders had spoken about such a temporary measure. It would extend federal funding operations into December to allow more time to work on the annual spending bills.

“I thought it was a good thing that he recognized that we need a CR,” Schumer, D-N.Y., told reporters on a call.

“We hope that our House Republicans will realize that any funding resolution has to be bipartisan or they will risk shutting down the government,” he said.

A stopgap measure that would keep government offices running past the Sept. 30 end of the fiscal year is a typical strategy while the Republican-held House and Democrat-held Senate try to iron out a long-term budget agreement. The government’s new fiscal year begins on Oct. 1, when funding approval is needed to avert closures of federal offices.

But this year, the task may prove more politically difficult. McCarthy will need to win over a large portion of his Republican colleagues to pass the stopgap bill or risk political blowback from staunch conservatives if he leaves them behind and cuts a bipartisan deal with Democrats.

Capitol Hill commission urges overhaul of Pentagon budget planning

Bryant Harris

WASHINGTON ― A congressionally mandated commission on Tuesday took its first shot at convincing the Pentagon and Congress to reform its budget planning process.

The Commission on Planning, Programming, Budgeting and Execution Reform released an interim report detailing 13 improvements that could be implemented now and another 10 suggestions that require additional stakeholder feedback before the final report is due in March.

The Planning, Programming, Budgeting and Execution, or PPBE, the process is the Pentagon’s multiyear system for aligning strategy with funding, which culminates in the president’s annual defence budget request to Congress. In the fiscal 2022 defence policy bill, Congress created a bipartisan commission to review the PPBE process.

“We’re looking at a number of improvements,” Commission Chairman Bob Hale, a former Pentagon comptroller, told reporters at a Defense Writers Group roundtable on Tuesday. “Can we make PPBE better able to foster innovation — because we know how important that is to national security — and to adapt more quickly to changing requirements?”

The recommendations for immediate implementation include: Improved Pentagon information sharing with Congress
Consolidating budget line items
Bolstering the Pentagon’s budget management workforce
Modernizing information systems
Streamlining disparate budget data sets within Pentagon budget offices

How Much Is an American Hostage Worth?


The Biden administration agreed last week to a deal with Iran that, if all goes according to plan, paves the way for five American citizens to come home after long imprisonments on spurious charges. For them and their families, the deal is a godsend.

The prize for Tehran? Six billion dollars in frozen Iranian oil revenues held in South Korea, to be disbursed via a special Qatari fund for humanitarian purchases, along with the release of several Iranians held in U.S. prisons for violating sanctions on Tehran. It’s likely that the agreement is also tied to efforts to resume nuclear talks with Iran, though the administration insists the nuclear and hostage files remain separate.

The prisoners and their families have been put through hell: One of them, Morad Tahbaz, lost 88 pounds in prison, according to his sister; another, Siamak Namazi, has been locked up for over 2,800 days. (The U.S. Embassy hostage ordeal lasted 444.) The redemption of captives is more than just a moral imperative: Americans deserve to know their government will never forsake them in foreign dungeons. And it is not a sign of weakness when democratic governments pay what seem like exorbitant amounts to free hostages. In Israel, Ariel Sharon and Benjamin Netanyahu each released hundreds of Arab prisoners to obtain the release of a single living Israeli hostage.

But there are also bad deals and unintended consequences. This is one that contains many.

“The Rule of LGOPs” (Little Groups of Paratroopers) John Marke © 2015 (rev of 2011)

John Marke 

On this the 71st anniversary of the World War II D-Day invasion it is only fitting to remind ourselves that rarely do things go as planned in battle.

The 18th-century military strategist Carl Von Clausewitz called it the “fog of war.” It must have been pretty foggy on the night of June 5th and the morning of June 6th 1944 off the coast of Normandy. In the predawn hours, Airborne troopers were dropped all over the field of battle, few hitting the “drop zone” as planned…

The Rule of LGOPs

“After the demise of the best Airborne plan, a most terrifying effect occurs on the battlefield. This effect is known as the Rule of LGOPs. This is, in its purest form, small groups of 19- year old American Paratroopers. They are well-trained, armed to the teeth and lack serious adult supervision. They collectively remember the Commander’s intent as “March to the sound of the guns and kill anyone who is not dressed like you…” …or something like that. Happily, they go about the day’s work…

The Rule of LGOPs is instructive:

– They shared a common vision

– The vision was simple, easy to understand, and unambiguous

– They were trained to improvise and take the initiative

– They need to be told what to do; not how to do it.


National Day Calendar


National Airborne Day on August 16th honours the military’s airborne divisions of the Armed Forces.

August 16, 1940, marks the date of the first official Army parachute jump at Ft. Benning, Georgia. The successful jump validated the innovative concept of inserting U.S. ground combat forces behind a battle line by parachute. These sky soldiers represent some of the most prestigious and expertly trained forces in the United States Army.

In the U.S. Army currently, two airborne divisions operate. The 82nd Airborne Division out of Ft. Bragg, North Carolina began as an infantry division. During World War I, the 82nd Division was activated on 25 August 1917 at Camp Gordon. In 1918, they earned the nickname All American for the composition of their division. Since the soldiers came not only from all across the country, but several were immigrants, too. The 82nd Division represented all of America as few other divisions did at the time.

The second and still active airborne division had a short-lived beginning. During World War I, the 101st Airborne Division was organized for a short while on November 2, 1918. However, the war ended shortly after. During World War II, the Screaming Eagles re-activated on August 16, 1942, at Camp Claiborne, Louisiana. They currently make their home at Ft. Campbell, Kentucky.

Both units have served around the world in combat, peacekeeping, and humanitarian missions.

The AI Power Paradox Can States Learn to Govern Artificial Intelligence—Before It’s Too Late?

Ian Bremmer

It’s 2035, and artificial intelligence is everywhere. AI systems run hospitals, operate airlines, and battle each other in the courtroom. Productivity has spiked to unprecedented levels, and countless previously unimaginable businesses have scaled at blistering speed, generating immense advances in well-being. New products, cures, and innovations hit the market daily, as science and technology kick into overdrive. And yet the world is growing both more unpredictable and more fragile, as terrorists find new ways to menace societies with intelligent, evolving cyberweapons and white-collar workers lose their jobs en masse.

Just a year ago, that scenario would have seemed purely fictional; today, it seems nearly inevitable. Generative AI systems can already write more clearly and persuasively than most humans and can produce original images, art, and even computer code based on simple language prompts. And generative AI is only the tip of the iceberg. Its arrival marks a Big Bang moment, the beginning of a world-changing technological revolution that will remake politics, economies, and societies.

Like past technological waves, AI will pair extraordinary growth and opportunity with immense disruption and risk. But unlike previous waves, it will also initiate a seismic shift in the structure and balance of global power as it threatens the status of nation-states as the world’s primary geopolitical actors. Whether they admit it or not, AI’s creators are themselves geopolitical actors, and their sovereignty over AI further entrenches the emerging “technopolar” order—one in which technology companies wield the kind of power in their domains once reserved for nation-states. For the past decade, big technology firms have effectively become independent, sovereign actors in the digital realms they have created. AI accelerates this trend and extends it far beyond the digital world. The technology’s complexity and the speed of its advancement will make it almost impossible for governments to make relevant rules at a reasonable pace. If governments do not catch up soon, it is possible they never will.

Do Oppenheimer’s Warnings About Nuclear Weapons Apply to AI?

Hal Brands

J. Robert Oppenheimer was once a household name in America, thanks to his work on the atomic weapons that helped save humanity in World War II and have terrified it ever since. His reputation as a brilliant scientist who was tormented by the dilemmas of the nuclear age is now enjoying a Hollywood-inspired renaissance — and his story has lessons for how democratic societies should deal with another transformative technology: artificial intelligence.

Unfortunately, we’re at risk of getting those lessons wrong.
Oppenheimer and his colleagues built the atomic bomb because almost nothing could have been worse than the Nazis winning World War II. By 1950, however, Oppenheimer opposed building the hydrogen bomb — which was orders of magnitude more powerful than the earliest atomic bombs — because he believed the tools of the Cold War had become more dangerous than those of America’s enemy. “If one is honest,” he predicted, “the most probable view of the future is that of war, exploding atomic bombs, death, and the end of most freedom.”

Oppenheimer lost the H-bomb debate, which eventually led to his loyalty being questioned and his security clearance being revoked. That coda aside, the parallels are obvious today.

Rapid-fire innovation in AI is ushering in another technological revolution. Once again, leading scientists, engineers and innovators argue it is simply too dangerous to unleash this technology on a rivalrous world. In March, prominent researchers and technologists called for a moratorium on AI development. In May, hundreds of experts wrote that AI poses a “risk of extinction” comparable to that of nuclear war. Geoffrey Hinton, a man as prominent in AI as Oppenheimer was in theoretical physics, resigned from his post at Google to warn of the “existential risk” ahead.

The UK Factor in India-Argentina Defense Relations

Rahul Wankhede

India and Argentina, two diverse nations geographically separated by vast oceans, have found common ground in bolstering their defense relations. Over the years, these countries have witnessed a gradual evolution in their ties, with the involvement of a significant third player – the United Kingdom. This trilateral dynamic has once again hit the headlines in India after news reports mentioning the possibility of a defense deal on LCA Tejas between India and Argentina became public.

This article explores the history, current status, and the role of the U.K. in shaping India-Argentina defense relations.

Historical Context

India and Argentina established diplomatic ties in 1948, but it was only in recent decades that they started exploring avenues for deeper cooperation in defense. Both nations share a commitment to democracy, multilateralism, and international peacekeeping, which laid the foundation for their defense collaboration. However, historical factors have influenced their relations, including the British colonial legacy that directly impacted both countries.

The United Kingdom’s historical role in India and Argentina has significantly influenced their defense relations. For India, the colonial period under British rule resulted in a complex relationship that has had implications for its security and foreign policy approach. The colonial past instilled a sense of self-reliance and strategic autonomy, leading India to prioritize partnerships based on mutual interests rather than being heavily influenced by historical ties.

The Military Recruiting Crisis and Gen Z

The decline in physical and mental fitness among young adults that has made many ineligible for military service is worrisome, but it may not be a grave national security concern. This is because our methods of killing terrorists and thwarting attacks now rely more on technology than manpower.

The 2011 killing of Osama bin Laden required two helicopters containing two dozen Navy SEALs. In 2020 the U.S. killed Qasem Soleimani—Iran’s second most powerful leader—with a drone and remote control. The role of technology in the military is evolving, and it’s hard to imagine that these types of operations will require putting U.S. troops on the ground for another eight years.