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Maxwell Papers

The Maxwell Papers are the Air War College’s (AWC) selection of the best professional studies papers from its graduates. These works, meant to highlight topics of importance to senior leaders and support discussion and further investigation, demonstrate the excellent research and analytical capabilities of AWC students. The Maxwell Papers are an outstanding example of the research work done at AWC as students hone their critical thinking skills while tackling real-world problems facing the Air Force in the twenty-first century. 

  •  Logistics Aloft

    Logistics Aloft

    Col Joel D. Jackson, USAF
    Since the beginning of Operation Enduring Freedom, Department of Defense (DOD) investment in remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) has exploded almost 700 percent to just under $4 billion per year in 2009.1 This expansion was primarily caused by the successful application of RPAs in their role as intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) platforms, but also as ISR/strike platforms because these particular mission sets fit the capabilities of RPAs. Going forward with these successes, the DOD should assess potential future RPA missions by first determining what particular characteristics of the ISR and ISR/strike missions made them successful as RPA missions and then determining what other missions fit these same characteristics. Emergency and mission-critical, time-sensitive (MCTS) intratheater logistical resupply are missions which fit these characteristics of being advantageous to persistent, efficient, modular systems integrated into a pervasive battle space. Work is currently underway developing RPAs to accomplish these missions, but these current applications do not focus on these specific characteristics. Instead a RPA designed specifically as a logistical delivery platform with modular ISR/strike capabilities and long endurance should be developed to fill these missions. [Col Joel D. Jackson, USAF / 2012 / 27 pages / ISBN: / AU Press Code: MP-71]
  •  Maxwell Paper Anthology

    Maxwell Paper Anthology

    Air University
    This collection of the 12 award-winning papers from Air War College for AY 2010 presents a unique look at topics of current interest and reflects a high level of academic scholarship. The authors include an officer from the Canadian Forces, another from the Swedish air force, and USAF officers with diverse backgrounds, all of whom bring their distinct perspectives to answer questions and offer insights on their research subjects. [Air University / 2011 / 218 pages]
  •  Military Culture

    Military Culture

    Karen O. Dunivin, Lieutenant Colonel, USAF
    In this study, Lt Col Karen O. Dunivin, USAF, examines social change in American military culture and explores the current struggle between the military’s traditional and exclusionary combat, masculine-warrior (CMW) paradigm or belief system and the contradictory evolving model of military culture characterized by egalitarianism and inclusiveness. It is a contest between old thinking and new thinking. The author uses two recent and ongoing cases to illustrate the divergence between paradigm and model: women in combat and homosexuals in the military. Colonel Dunivin also examines the long-term conflict within US military culture, suggesting that the American military is now, once again, undergoing a cultural paradigm shift—moving away from its traditional CMW beliefs and values of exclusion toward an inclusionary view of soldiering. Assuming that the US military actively seeks to create a paradigm shift for its culture—as evidenced by the evolving model of culture—the author argues the US armed forces must, in the process, reduce their tendencies toward separatism and exclusiveness. She suggests three strategies for implementing a paradigm shift: alter the military’s prevailing combat, masculine image and identity which fosters exclusion rather than inclusion; proactively embrace and manage ongoing, major social change; and accept both institutional and individual commitment and responsibility for this paradigm shift. [Karen O. Dunivin, Lieutenant Colonel, USAF / 1997 / 37 pages / ISBN: / AU Press Code: MP-10]
  •  Military Personnel as Innovators

    Military Personnel as Innovators

    Col Michelle E. Ewy, USAF
    Maxwell Paper No. 74 calls for innovation from US military leaders reverberate throughout the ranks. In an organizational culture that reinforces self-restraint, rewards groupthink, and treats white space as wasted space, these leaders have unrealistic expectations of their military personnel. An examination of the requirements for innovation along with recent neuroscience and organizational psychology research provides valuable insight into how the checklist mentality of the military inhibits creativity and innovation. Recommendations to counter these barriers include recruiting creative personalities, training in divergent thinking, providing time for incubation, and promoting innovative leaders. Adoption of these recommendations will embolden military members to be more creative and will cultivate a culture that champions innovation. [Col Michelle E. Ewy, USAF / Jan 2018, 33 pages / AU Press Code: P-125]
  •  Missile Defensive Systems and the Civil Reserve Air Fleet

    Missile Defensive Systems and the Civil Reserve Air Fleet

    Lt Col Glen R. Downing, USAF
    One of the United States’ greatest military advantages is rapid global mobility. The Civil Reserve Air Fleet (CRAF) provides a crucial supplement to the military’s mobility resources in time of war or national emergency. The proliferation of man-portable air defense systems (MANPADS), however, poses a growing threat to the CRAF and its critical airlift capacity. In this study, Lt Col Glen Downing describes the US government’s historical and potential future uses of the CRAF during contingency operations. He examines current CRAF policies, the operating environment, and the MANPAD threat, describing the negative consequences of the shoot down of a CRAF airliner. Positing several options to counter the threat, he analyzes each following the parameters of unit cost, operating cost, funding sources, insurability, and crew training. The study concludes with a thoughtful recommendation to the Department of Defense on a course of action to confront the MANPADS threat to the CRAF. [Lt Col Glen R. Downing, USAF / 2009 / 42 pages / ISBN: / AU Press Code: MP-45]
  •  Near Space

    Near Space

    Lt Col Kurt D. Hall, USAF
    This paper recommends caution before developing the near-space capabilities required for stay and stare, persistent ISR, and BLOS communications. The technical challenges can prove more daunting than those associated with development of the high-altitude unmanned aerial vehicle, a similar program lasting a decade and costing close to $2 billion. Several lessons from recent operations provide greater improvements to persistence and do not require additional collection systems. Finally, the paper offers several recommendations concerning the way ahead for near-space development. [Lt Col Kurt D. Hall, USAF 2006 / 40 pages / ISBN: / AU Press Code: MP-38]
  •  Offensive Use of Chemical Technologies by US Special Operations Forces in the Global War on Terrorism

    Offensive Use of Chemical Technologies by US Special Operations Forces in the Global War on Terrorism

    CMDR George N. T. Whitbred IV, USN
    Counterterrorist operations in the twenty-first century will continue to rely on the combination of highly trained, exceptionally skilled special operations forces and the use of unconventional methods of warfare. Today, counterterrorist operators face a modern terrorist who neither follows constructs of conventional warfare nor is bound by accepted conventions, protocols, or rules of engagement. Anyone, anywhere, anytime is a target. Countering such actions will require the integration of conventional and unconventional approaches. The application of nonlethal chemical technologies offers a viable approach to today’s counterterrorist operations. In both the antipersonnel and antimaterial applications, advances in technology offer new dimensions in the methods of unconventional warfare. Commander Whitbred examines the applicability of nonlethal chemical technologies as they relate to unconventional global counterterrorist operations, as well as their strategic impacts in relation to the Chemical Weapons Convention’s restriction of the use of chemical warfare. Although nonlethal chemical technologies are designed to be employed at the tactical level, the results of their effects can become strategic in nature. He recommends that the development of these technologies will extend the range of options in the overall effectiveness of counterterrorist operations. [CMDR George N. T. Whitbred IV, USN / 2006 / 46 pages / ISBN: / AU Press Code: MP-37]
  •  Operation Allied Force

    Operation Allied Force

    Lt Col Michael W. Lamb Sr., USAF
    In this discerning assessment of Operation Allied Force (OAF), Lt Col Michael W. Lamb Sr. examines the myriad of lessons learned that have been written, and debated, from this campaign and synthesizes them into some golden nuggets for strategists and campaign planners. Indeed, there is much to be learned. From the beginning of the campaign, the military logic of OAF has been a matter of intense, even bitter debate. The problems and questions that arise from OAF are numerous and cut across the spectrum of military operations. Colonel Lamb’s examination of some key lessons learned provides nuggets that airmen need to remember in future campaigns. From the coalition operations and organization to targeting, from logistics to rapid response contingencies, these lessons are essential elements to be remembered in future campaigns. [Lt Col Michael W. Lamb Sr., USAF / 2002 / 44 pages / ISBN: / AU Press Code: MP-27]
  •  Operations Other Than War

    Operations Other Than War

    Lieutenant Colonel Charles W. Hasskamp, USAF
    This study examines the rise of operations other than war (OOTW) as a new and prominent tasking for the armed services of the United States. The author, Lt Col Charles W. Hasskamp, USAF, is an advocate of the OOTW mission, and he argues that the US Special Forces Command is an excellent instrument for the task. The author bases his position on these points. First, the end of the cold war has provided the United States a respite from the focused geopolitical strategy and challenge of "containment. " Unfortunately, without the stability coerced by a bipolar world, the shutters have come off and the shades have gone up on "windows" that reveal a new world disorder. While the world has an increasingly interdependent global economy, the legacies of weapons of mass destruction, terrorism, drug trafficking, and religious and ethnic extremism generate increasing threats to that free-market, democratic ideal the American public espouses for all countries. Second, the US government’s current national security strategy emphasizes "engagement and enlargement" as they factor into US preventive diplomacy. The national military strategy emphasizes "flexible and selective engagement" which relates to preventive deterrence. Both of these strategies emphasize the use of US military forces for considerable work other than fighting the nation’s wars—that is, for OOTW. As recent experience shows, there is considerable pressure to use the American military as an arbitrator and peacemaker to the world. This study examines the arguments for and against expanding our military’s nontraditional roles and missions. [Lieutenant Colonel Charles W. Hasskamp, USAF / 1998 / 41 pages / ISBN: / AU Press Code: P-13]
  •  Preventing Catastrophe

    Preventing Catastrophe

    Lieutenant Colonel Martin J. Wojtysiak,USAF
    Col Wojtysiak, USAF, proposes a response to the dangerous proliferation of nuclear weapons in India and Pakistan. This paper highlights the threat in "The Nuclear Catastrophe of 2005," a gripping projection of the worstcase scenario on the current realities of the Indian subcontinent. Written a year after the "catastrophe," it vividly describes the events leading up to the disaster as well as the grim aftermath of a South Asian nuclear war. The remainder of the paper looks at US regional objectives and suggests how they might be achieved. The author proposes a regional proliferation regime that realistically addresses the threat and moves the United States to a pragmatic approach to manage and limit the ongoing proliferation in South Asia. [Lieutenant Colonel Martin J. Wojtysiak, USAF / 2001 / 41 pages / ISBN: / AU Press Code: MP-25]
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