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The U.S. Army Professional Writing Collection draws from a variety of professional journals that focus on relevant issues affecting The Army. The views expressed are those of the author and do not represent the official position of the Army. This micro-site seeks to stimulate innovative thinking about the challenges that may face tomorrow's Army. It is further intended that the articles featured on this site cause reflection, increased dialogue within the Army Community, and in the best case, action by Soldiers. Updated monthly, these articles are written by Soldiers, civilians, academics, and other subject matter experts. Links to various Army publications, Department of Defense journals and selected non-governmental defense-related publications are also provided on this site.

Surrounded: Seeing the World from Iran's Point of View

Surrounded: Seeing the World from Iran's Point of ViewSince 1979, when the Islamic revolution in Iran effectively severed diplomatic and security ties between Tehran and Washington, international tit-for-tat media stories have become the norm in the U.S.-Iran relationship. Recently, however, there has been an ominous new twist as the focus has shifted to reporting on Iranian efforts to acquire a nuclear capability together with U.S. diplomatic responses-including clear threats-aimed at preventing Iran from doing so. The main question now is, are the United States and Iran on a collision course? The crux of the current matter is ostensibly this: the Islamic Republic of Iran insists on its right as a sovereign nation to acquire nuclear technology for peaceful use, while the Bush administration asserts that the Iran really wants the technology in order to produce nuclear weapons with which it can threaten its neighbors and dominate the oil-rich Middle East. Because the United States and much of Western Europe depend on the region for energy, the Bush administration claims that Iran's move cannot be tolerated, so the issue is at the UN Security Council.

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Counterinsurgency Diplomacy: Political Advisors at the Operational and Tactical Levels

Counterinsurgency Diplomacy: Political Advisors at the Operational and Tactical LevelsFailure to incorporate political goals and requirements into military action has often slowed or even prevented the timely resolution of conflicts. This has especially been the case in the insurgencies in Afghanistan and Iraq, where we initially proceeded as if military power alone could achieve our aims. Political activity in concert with military operations, especially at the operational and tactical levels, will play a huge role in any favorable resolution of these conflicts and any future conflicts that fall under the rubric of unconventional warfare. The insurgencies we face today are, in part, a result of the sweeping political changes wrought by globalization and the relative decline of the nation-state as the basis for international order. Consequently, conventional military force alone will not achieve victory-there will be no battles between massive armies leading to a final resolution of the conflict. Nor will typical state-to-state diplomacy, in which conflict is resolved through a peace treaty, help stanch such insurgencies. In order to succeed, we must try a new approach.

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A Cause for Hope: Economic Revitalization in Iraq

A Cause for Hope: Economic Revitalization in Iraq"I need not tell you that the world situation is very serious. That must be apparent to all intelligent people. I think one difficulty is that the problem is one of such enormous complexity that the very mass of facts presented to the public by press and radio make it exceedingly difficult for the man in the street to reach a clear appraisement of the situation. Furthermore, the people of this country are distant from the troubled areas of the earth and it is hard for them to comprehend the plight and consequent reactions of the long-suffering peoples, and the effect of those reactions on their governments in connection with our efforts to promote peace in the world." These words, spoken by George C. Marshall before the commencement of Harvard graduates in June of 1947, captured the distress of postwar Europe and the challenge of helping the average American comprehend the import of events of the day. Similarly, the U.S. recognized the need for economic reconstruction and development in Iraq following the fall of the Saddam Hussein regime in 2003.

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Toward Strategic Communication

Toward Strategic CommunicationA number of articles in the press this past year have reported that political and military leaders are frustrated because the government does not have an integrated process for delivering "strategic communication" on issues of national importance, particularly the war on terrorism. Frustration over the inability to coordinate and synchronize public information activities has been vented toward the Department of Defense and the military services. Others have voiced similar worries about a lack of cohesiveness and coordination within the Department of State and the National Security Council. In short, the question of how to transform public communication channels and methods to meet the challenges posed in an era of globalized, instantaneous, and ubiquitous media has caused concern and even alarm. Moreover, many, especially in the military, are worried that our enemies have already occupied and dominated the infosphere battlespace.

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