Permission To Speak Freely

Congress Is Giving The Navy 3 More Littoral Combat Ships Than It Wants Or Needs

littoral combat ship
Lawmakers are giving the U.S. Navy three more littoral combat ships than the service actually wants or needs, because of course they would. Although the Navy set a requirement of 32 LCS’, lawmakers offered up funding for three more while cutting funding for modules that would make the current ships more useful, such as an anti-submarine … Read More

Hilarious Video Shows Navy Carrier Officers Having Way Too Much Fun Launching Aircraft

catapult officer
You wouldn’t think listening to ‘Gangnam Style’ would make much sense during U.S. Navy carrier flight deck operations, but about a dozen catapult officers have proven us all wrong. Our friend Doctrine Man reposted a video to his Facebook page on Wednesday set to the K-pop hit showing various Navy lieutenants in action, dancing, hopping … Read More

Why We Fight: It’s Not Always Because We Face An Enemy

why we fight book excerpt
When looking at interstate wars, conflict between groups may actually be more about internal group dynamics than about the actions of the other side. Thus, much as groups will fight back when threatened by others, if war is motived by a threat to individuals’ sense of belonging to a cohesive group, then they will fight … Read More

We Need To Start Thinking Differently About Maritime Airpower — And We Can

maritime airpower aircraft carrier
There is an ongoing debate about the continued viability of the aircraft carrier. Proponents point to the fact the carrier provides a range of capabilities essential for power projection and sea control that, without basing rights, cannot be provided in any other way. Opponents note that several nations have drones and cruise missiles that vastly … Read More

Why The Navy Faces The Most Worrisome Challenges Of Any US Armed Service

us navy challenges
The next time we have a big war, I think the Navy will be our armed service that is caught the most flat-footed. Why? Because it hasn’t had its nose bloodied since 1945. That’s a long time to go without facing a serious combat challenge. Yes, it has had violent losses, such as aboard the … Read More

The Battle For Space Dominance Is Real. Here’s Why A New ‘Space Force’ Is The Wrong Solution

space force
Announced earlier this summer, President Trump’s direction for a new Space Force has drawn an onslaught of criticism from lawmakers and military leaders concerned about the cost and bureaucratic burden a sixth military branch would bring to an already complex and expansive Pentagon. And while an escalation of military power in space deserves a robust … Read More

Here’s What Happens When Your Local Porta Potty Cleaner Just Up And Leaves

combat pooping afghan porta potty cleaner
Here’s the fourth entry in our Combat Pooping contest, and it’s a strong one. If you have something you think is as good, please e-mail it to Tom Ricks. On my outpost in Kandahar, we had six porta-potties for about 60 guys, which is a good ratio. We contracted out this local Afghan dude who had a vacuum … Read More

Wikileaks’ Julian Assange Reportedly Tried To Get A Russian Visa

julian assange wikileaks
Wikileaks founder Julian Assange reportedly tried to obtain a Russian visa in 2010, according to the Associated Press. In a letter to the Russian consulate in London obtained by AP dated Nov. 30, 2010, Assange wrote: “I, Julian Assange, hereby grant full authority to my friend, Israel Shamir, to both drop off and collect my … Read More