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Volume 34 Issue 1, Spring 2020

 
  • FEATURE ARTICLES
  • First Sergeant: Weak-Tie of the Air Force Leadership Triad

    CMSgt Josh Lackey, USAF

    Despite the relative complexity and degree of authority inherent to the position, the first sergeant is intentionally from outside the functional expertise of the unit of assignment. This theoretical investigation was constructed around a Socratic conceptual framework, in-depth literature review, and empirical observation.

  • VIEWS
  • Photo of Maj Robert A. Bettinger, USAF, PhD​ wearing USAF service dress uniform

    An Argument against Satellite Resiliency: Simplicity in the Face of Modern Satellite Design

    Capt Dax Linville, USAF
    Maj Robert A. Bettinger, USAF, PhD​

    The transition of space as a peaceful domain to a war-fighting domain requires a change to current methodologies that underpin current satellite design and space systems engineering practices for national security missions. Historically, US space-based assets favor a large, monolithic, and technologically exquisite spacecraft design that bears the burden of entire segments of national space capability. The accelerated inclusion of counterspace threats into an environment historically thought of as a peaceful domain requires a change to these satellite design methodologies.

  • Technology for Innovation & Testing on Accredited Networks logo

    Quiet Giant: The TITAN Cloud and the Future of DOD Artificial Intelligence

    Maj William Giannetti, USAFR
    The DOD seeks to consolidate more than 500 clouds into a $10 billion acquisition known as JEDI—the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure initiative. JEDI could be where Joint Artificial Intelligence Center (JAIC) developers create cutting-edge artificial intelligence and machine learning algorithms. High-profile cloud providers, like Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure, are locked in fierce competition for the JEDI contract. But a lesser-known Air Force-sponsored cloud called TITAN can provide the JAIC a ready, reliable framework at a fraction of the price.

  • COMMENTARY
  • Photo of Col Frederick “Trey” Coleman, USAF

    Getting out of Our Tactical Comfort Zone: Leveraging the Joint Planning Process to Prepare Airmen for Joint Duty

    Col Frederick “Trey” Coleman, USAF
    This article highlights opportunities to improve Airmen’s understanding and utilization of the Joint Planning Process as a way to better prepare Air Force officers for joint staff duties. The Joint Planning Process is a proven problem-solving methodology that offers a framework and lexicon familiar to combatant commanders. However, Airmen, by our very nature, tend to gravitate toward tactically oriented current operations assignments and away from operational-level strategic planning assignments. 

  • SCHRIEVER ESSAY AWARDS
  • Photo of Lt Col Brandon Davenport, USAF wearing military uniform

    On Implementing a Space War-Fighting
    Construct: A Treatise on Applied Frameworks from Other Domains

    Lt Col Brandon Davenport, USAF
    The vision of an innovative space war-fighting construct is predicated on the formulation of domain-centric strategy, doctrine, and tactics. The newly established US Space Force (USSF) will require the generation of these fundamental elements for the service to create a new war-fighting culture and ultimately provide a combat-credible force to the re-established US Space Command.

  • Photo of Maj Kenneth Grosselin, USAF in service dress

    A Culture of Military Spacepower

    Maj Kenneth Grosselin, USAF
    Cultivating a space war-fighting culture has become an operational imperative for the US Air Force. An analysis of organizational culture theory reveals that stable cultures emerge when a unifying purpose and group identity are broadly recognized and understood. War fighters in every domain appreciate this relationship and connect their purpose and identity to an independent theory of military power—land power, sea power, and airpower, respectively.

  • BOOK REVIEWS
  • Book cover of Autonomous Horizons: The Way Forward

     

    Autonomous Horizons: The Way Forward

    by Dr. Greg L. Zacharias
    Reviewed by LCDR James M. Landreth, USN

    As automation sweeps across every sector of industry, defense officials must constantly update the road map for dominance in a digital future. In particular, the proliferation of autonomous systems (AS) within defense requires new ways of thinking to fully leverage new capabilities. Autonomous Horizons: The Way Forward provides the needed reference text to map the future of AS. The text is a widely sourced reference guide with hundreds of authoritative citations for further research.

  • Book cover of The Future of Extended Deterrence: The United States, NATO, and Beyond

    The Future of Extended Deterrence: The United States, NATO, and Beyond

    edited by Stéfanie von Hlatky and Andreas Wenger
    Reviewed by Dr. Heather Venable

    This edited collection draws on the analysis of workshop participants brought together by the work’s editors to discuss the complex relationship between the US and its European allies in the context of deterrence. The Future of Extended Deterrence contains seven individual contributions organized into three sections: “New Thinking on Deterrence,” “The North Atlantic Treaty Organization’s (NATO) Nuclear Weapons Policy,” and “The Politics of Missile Defense.”

  • Book cover of Space Wars: The First Six Hours of World War III, a War Game Scenario

    Space Wars: The First Six Hours of World War III, A War Game Scenario

    by Michael J. Coumatos, William B. Scott, and William J. Birnes
    Reviewed by Capt Donald Williams, USAF

    In the techno-thriller Space Wars: The First Six Hours of World War III, A War Game Scenario, authors Michael J. Coumatos, William B. Scott, and William J. Birnes paint the picture of America’s national security with destroyed and degraded intelligence capabilities. The authors draw on their personal experiences and specializations to place the reader inside the cockpit, at the war planning center, and into the middle of a national security nightmare. 

  • Book cover of Above and Beyond: John F. Kennedy and America’s Most Dangerous Cold War Spy Mission

    Above and Beyond: John F. Kennedy and America’s Most Dangerous Cold War Spy Mission

    by Casey Sherman and Michael J. Tougias
    Reviewed by COL H. Wayne Whitten, USMC, Retired

    Above and Beyond is the latest book about the Cuban Missile Crisis (CMC), the perilous 13 days in October 1962 that threatened to turn the Cold War red-hot as America and the Soviet Union were on the brink of a nuclear war. Casey Sherman and Michael J. Touglas are award-winning journalists and respected public speakers who teamed on award-winning nonfiction books such as The Finest Hours: The True Story of the U.S. Coast Guard’s Most Daring Sea Rescue and Boston Strong: A City’s Triumph Over Tragedy, which were turned into motion pictures. 

  • Book cover of A Complete History of U.S. Combat Aircraft Fly-Off Competitions: Winners, Losers, and What Might Have Been

    A Complete History of U.S. Combat Aircraft Fly-Off Competitions: Winners, Losers, and What Might Have Been

    by Erik Simonsen
    Reviewed by Daniel Schwabe

    What is better than a fly-off? The premise of two new designs, fully formed and performing to their utmost, all in the hopes of big procurement contracts, is behind aviation historian and photographer Erik Simonsen’s A Complete History of U.S. Combat Aircraft Fly-Off Competitions. The author reviews 10 post―World War II competitions, providing details of each plane, the goal of the competition, and the long-term consequences of the decision.

  • Book cover of Always at War: Organizational Culture in Strategic Air Command, 1946–62 (Transforming War)

    Always at War: Organizational Culture in Strategic Air Command, 1946–62 (Transforming War)

    by Melvin G. Deaile
    Reviewed by Dr. Corbin Williamson

    Always at War examines the creation and formation of culture in the best-known command in the Cold War US Air Force: Strategic Air Command (SAC). Melvin G. Deaile, a retired USAF bomber pilot, argues that SAC’s culture stemmed from a shared World War II experience and prioritized standardization, centralization of authority, and specialization. The work, Deaile’s revised 2007 University of North Carolina dissertation, relies on Air Force archival records, the personal papers of senior USAF officers, and some oral history interviews conducted with SAC veterans. 

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