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Midrats

Updated 10 days ago

Government & Organizations
News & Politics
National
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Navy Milbloggers Sal from "CDR Salamander" and EagleOne from "EagleSpeak" discuss leading issues and developments for the Navy, Marine Corps, Coast Guard and related national security issues.

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Navy Milbloggers Sal from "CDR Salamander" and EagleOne from "EagleSpeak" discuss leading issues and developments for the Navy, Marine Corps, Coast Guard and related national security issues.

iTunes Ratings

32 Ratings
Average Ratings
26
2
3
1
0

Excellent analysis

By crankshaft333 - Oct 23 2018
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Excellent analysis and interesting guests. Enjoyable way to stay up to date on maritime news.

August Cole and Ghost Fleet

By brogrenj - May 20 2016
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This was the fastest an hour has ever expired. Wonderful insights, thank you.

iTunes Ratings

32 Ratings
Average Ratings
26
2
3
1
0

Excellent analysis

By crankshaft333 - Oct 23 2018
Read more
Excellent analysis and interesting guests. Enjoyable way to stay up to date on maritime news.

August Cole and Ghost Fleet

By brogrenj - May 20 2016
Read more
This was the fastest an hour has ever expired. Wonderful insights, thank you.
Cover image of Midrats

Midrats

Updated 10 days ago

Read more

Navy Milbloggers Sal from "CDR Salamander" and EagleOne from "EagleSpeak" discuss leading issues and developments for the Navy, Marine Corps, Coast Guard and related national security issues.

Rank #1: Episode 500: The War in Yemen, with Katherine Zimmerman

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It is a civil war, tribal war, religious war, and proxy war with local, regional, and global implications.

The specific and larger implications of the war in Yemen will be our topic for the full hour with our guest Katherine Zimmerman.

Katherine Zimmerman is a research fellow at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) and the research manager for AEI’s Critical Threats Project. As AEI’s senior analyst studying terrorist groups, she focuses on the global al Qaeda network and covers the Salafi-jihadi movement and related trends in the Middle East and Africa. She also specializes in al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula and Yemen, al Shabaab in Somalia, and al Qaeda in the Sahel.

Ms. Zimmerman has testified before Congress about the threats to US national security interests emanating from al Qaeda and its network. She has also briefed members of Congress, their staff, and US military, diplomatic, and intelligence community personnel. Her analyses have been widely published, including in CNN.com, Foreign Affairs, FoxNews.com, The Hill, The Huffington Post, The Wall Street Journal, and The Washington Post. She is a term member with the Council on Foreign Relations and a member of the ?RESOLVE Network Research Advisory Council.
Aug 05 2019
1 hour 1 min
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Rank #2: Episode 409: USS FITZGERALD & MCCAIN Collisions; Observations with Bryan McGrath

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This week saw the release of the reports on the collision reports and Comprehensive Review of the incidents this summer between merchant ships in WESTPAC and the destroyers USS FITZGERALD and USS MCCAIN.

The totally avoidable collisions resulted in the death of 17 Sailors and removal from our most important theater two of our most critical assets.

Our guest for the full hour will be Bryan McGrath, CDR, USN (Ret.).

Bryan grew up in Mount Laurel, New Jersey, and graduated from the University of Virginia in 1987. He was commissioned upon graduation in the United States Navy, and served as a Surface Warfare Officer until his retirement in 2008. At sea, he served primarily in cruisers and destroyers, rising to command of the Destroyer USS BULKELEY (DDG 84).

During his command tour, he won the Surface Navy Association’s Admiral Elmo Zumwalt Award for Inspirational Leadership, and the BULKELEY was awarded the USS ARIZONA Memorial Trophy signifying the fleet’s most combat ready unit. Ashore, Bryan enjoyed four tours in Washington DC, including his final tour in which he acted as Team Leader and primary author of our nation’s 2007 maritime strategy entitled “A Cooperative Strategy for 21st Century Seapower.”

Since retirement, Bryan has become active in presidential politics, serving first as the Navy Policy Team lead for the Romney Campaign in 2012, and then as the Navy and Marine Corps Policy lead for the Rubio Campaign in 2016.

He is the Assistant Director of Hudson Institute’s Center for American Seapower, and he is the Managing Director of The FerryBridge Group LLC, a small defense consulting firm.
Nov 05 2017
1 hour 5 mins
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Rank #3: Episode 399: The Asiatic Fleet of 1941 and its Lessons of Today

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Nothing is really new, unprecedented, or that unique. If you are willing to look with the right eye, though tools may have changed, the fundamentals often remain the same.

In the opening months of WWII, there is a story we don't study enough - mostly because it is not a pleasant story.

For today's episode, we're going to take some time to do look at the story of the Asiatic Fleet in 1941, and what her story might inform us about the challenges today.

Our guest for the full hour will be Hunter Stires. From our guest's article from last August's Naval Institute's Proceedings, he sets the stage;

Even in the missile age, we can gain much insight on naval strategy in Asia from the trials and travails of Admiral Thomas C. Hart and his castoff flotilla of all-gun cruisers, four-stacker destroyers, and diesel submarines manned by the weathered “old China hands” of the Asiatic Fleet. Hart and his 11,000 highly experienced officers and men, most with many more years in service than their counterparts elsewhere in the Navy and Marine Corps, faced the same challenges that our forward forces and strategic planners are grappling with today, including the use of submarines and surface ships to find and destroy high-value targets in denied areas at war’s opening, the indefensibility of forward bases, and the vital importance of mobile logistics assets to replace them.

Hunter is a Fellow at the Hattendorf Center for Maritime Historical Research and provides support to staff at NWC. He is a regular contributor to The National Interest and is the author of 1941 Asiatic Fleet Offers Strategic Lessons, published in the USNI Proceedings in August 2016. He is a student at Columbia University.
Aug 27 2017
1 hour 4 mins
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Rank #4: Episode 159: Best of Counter Narcotics

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This week's 3-day weekend "Best of" will reach back to Episode 39 where we talk about the U.S. Coast Guard's role in defending the USA from the flow of illegal drugs.
Our guest will be CDR E. A. Westfall, CDR, USCG, then Commanding Officer of the USCGC ESCANABA (WMEC 907).
Jan 20 2013
58 mins
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Rank #5: Episode 372: Andrew Jackson’s Navy; Now More Than Ever?

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Since his election in November, the administration and several articles have suggested Donald Trump is a new Andrew Jackson whose portrait now hangs in the Oval Office. What might that mean for the Navy? How did Andrew Jackson approach his Navy and what lessons can we draw from that?

Our guest for the full hour for a discussion of an understudied part of our naval history and what it could mean for the current administration is returning guest Claude Berube.

Claude is the Director of the Naval Academy Museum and has taught in both the Political Science and History Departments at the Naval Academy. He has worked in the U.S. Senate, as a maritime studies fellow at the Heritage Foundation, as the head of a terrorism analysis team for the Office of Naval Intelligence and as a defense contractor. An intelligence officer in the Navy Reserve, he deployed with Expeditionary Strike Group Five in 2004-05. His articles have been published in Orbis, Vietnam Magazine, Naval History, The Washington Times, Jane’s Intelligence Review, Naval Institute Proceedings and others. He’s also written or co-authored five books. He’s completing his doctoral dissertation through the University of Leeds.
Feb 19 2017
1 hour 2 mins
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Rank #6: Episode 466: The USN's Labs, Research Facilities, and Ranges with Mark Vandroff

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With budget fights chasing money and arguments about hulls in the water, which part of our Navy makes sure what comes out the other end is more than just a fleet in being? A Navy that can get underway, get over there, fight, get back, get repaired, get upgraded, and deploy again - second to none?

We are going to dive deep in to the commands, men and women who make that happen, NSWC Carderock and other NAVSEA warfare centers that form the core of the labs, research facilities, and ranges that makes the sexy possible.

Our guest for the full hour returning to the show will be Captain Mark Vandroff, USN, Commanding Officer Naval Surface Warfare Center, Carderock Division.
Dec 09 2018
1 hour 5 mins
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Rank #7: Episode 164: Best of With James D. Hornfischer

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You're in for a good treat this Best Of.

When you mention books on naval history, there are but a few authors whose work immediately come to mind, and our guest is one of them.

Unquestionably one of the finest writers of naval history of the last half-century; James D. Hornfischer.

We have talked about his books on a regular basis both on Midrats and over at our homeblogs; The Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors &  Ship of Ghosts.  He has a new book out, one that will be required reading for his fans - Neptune's Inferno: The U.S. Navy at Guadalcanal.

We will have him for the full hour, so don't miss the discussion of the U.S. Navy in the opening of WWII, the lessons we should take from history, and the importance of the study of naval history for both the professional and amateur.
Feb 24 2013
59 mins
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Rank #8: Episode 393: Building the right carrier; heavy, medium, or light with Tal Manvel

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As the USS FORD (CVN 78) delivered to the US Navy, the Royal Navy’s new HMS QUEEN ELIZABETH underway, and many nations either building or wanting built carriers of a variety of sized, the second decade of the 21st Century is an exciting time for those who are interested in carrier design.

With the Senate recently dedicating $30 million to the study of a light carrier design, the discussion has begun again about what is the right size carrier for the requirements of our navy.

We have the perfect guest for the entire hour to discuss, returning guest J. Talbot Manvel, Captain, USN (Ret).

Tal teaches at the US Naval Academy. While on active duty he served as an engineering officer specializing in aircraft carriers. He served on three, assisted in building two, and ended his career developing the new FORD class of aircraft carriers. He graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1972, earned a masters in mechanical engineering from the Naval Postgraduate School in 1979, a masters in liberal arts from St John’s College in 2008.

J. Talbot Manvel, Captain, USN (Ret) teaches at the US Naval Academy. Wile on active duty he served as an engineering officer specializing in aircraft carriers. He served on three, assisted in building two, and ended his career developing the new FORD class of aircraft carriers. He graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1972, earned a masters in mechanical engineering from the Naval Postgraduate School in 1979, a masters in liberal arts from St John’s College in 2008.
Jul 16 2017
1 hour 8 mins
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Rank #9: Episode 170: Stolen Seas; Tales of Somali Piracy

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We have heard from industry, military leaders, Marines, and private security providers, this Sunday we are going to look at piracy at a more personal level with director Thymaya Payne of the documentary, Stolen Seas; Tales of Somali Piracy. He will be our guest for the full hour.
From the show promo:
The filmmakers have spent the past three years traveling to some of the world's most violent locales in order to make this documentary on Somali piracy, Stolen Seas. Utilizing exclusive interviews and unparalleled access to real pirates, hostages, hostages' relatives, ship-owners, pirate negotiators and experts on piracy and international policy, Stolen Seas presents a chilling exploration of the Somali pirate phenomenon.
The film throws the viewer, through audio recordings and found video, right into the middle of the real-life hostage negotiation of a Danish shipping vessel, the CEC Future. As the haggling between the ship's stoic owner Per Gullestrup, and the pirate's loquacious negotiator, Ishmael Ali, drags on for 70 days, these two adversaries' relationship takes an unexpected turn and an unlikely friendship is born.
Stolen Seas is an eye opening refutation of preconceived ideas on how or why piracy has become the world's most frightening multi-million dollar growth industry.
Apr 07 2013
1 hour 1 min
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Rank #10: Episode 414: Best of Anti-Access Area-Denial (A2AD) with Sam Tangredi

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Power projection, sea control, access denial, and the ability to impose your will on the enemy from the sea; or depending on your perspective, prevent them from doing the same.

If the comparative advantage of American military power includes the use of the world's oceans as a basing area from projecting power and national will, how can other nations design systems and tactics to trump that advantage? What are in place now, and what can we expect to see in the near future?

Our guest for the full hour will be Sam J. Tangredi, a defense strategist whose studies of future warfare prompted Defense Department officials to label him “the Navy’s futurist.” His thirty-year naval career included command at sea, service in key strategic planning positions in the Pentagon and overseas, earning a PhD in international relations, and research fellowships at two think tanks.

His over one hundred publications—which include four books--have won awards, including the U.S. Naval Institute’s Arleigh Burke Prize and the U.S. Navy League’s Alfred Thayer Mahan Award. He is currently the director of San Diego operations for the planning/consulting firm Strategic Insight.

First aired OCT 2014.
Dec 10 2017
1 hour 10 mins
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Rank #11: Episode 477: Afghanistan & the Long War with Bill Roggio

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We are going to take a clear, cold, and unsparing look at the status of the conflict in Afghanistan and the Long War in general with our returning guest, Bill Roggio.

In a far-reaching discussion, we will touch on the rather unpleasant reality of where we have put ourselves through our own action, and what people should expect going forward.

Bill is a senior fellow at FDD and editor of FDD’s Long War Journal, which provides original reporting and analysis of the Global War on Terror from Afghanistan and Pakistan to Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Somalia, North Africa, Iran, and beyond. He is also president of the nonprofit media company Public Multimedia Inc.

Bill was embedded with the U.S. Marine Corps, U.S. Army, and Iraqi forces in Iraq between 2005 and 2008, and with the Canadian Army in Afghanistan in 2006. From 1991 to 1997, Bill served as a signalman and infantryman in the U.S. Army and New Jersey National Guard. His articles have been published in The New York Times, The Weekly Standard, The Daily Beast, National Review, and The New York Post, and his work has been in outlets including The New Times, The Washington Post, The Los Angeles Times, CNN, Foreign Policy, and Bloomberg.
Feb 24 2019
52 mins
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Rank #12: Episode 492: Making a Better Army Staff Officer, with COL Kirk Dorr, USA

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How does our Army help officers understand military doctrine, history, and theory? How do we ensure that our staffs have leaders capable of generating options for commanders engaged with our most complex operational and strategic problem sets?

It doesn't happen by accident.

To address these questions and related topics, our guest this Sunday will be Colonel Kirk Dorr, USA the Director of the U.S. Army’s School of Advanced Military Studies (commonly known as “SAMS”) at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.

COL Dorr is a career Armor Officer, has commanded formations from the company to brigade-levels, and served in staff officer assignments up to the Army Staff and Joint Staff-levels.

COL Dorr’s military education includes attendance at both Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology as a resident Fellow studying international affairs and security studies. He is also a graduate of the School of Advanced Military Studies, Joint and Combined Warfighting School, and the Army Command and General Staff College.
Jun 12 2019
1 hour 5 mins
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Rank #13: Episode 394: A Midsummer's Thucydides with Kori Schake

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For a man who last walked the Earth almost 2,500 years ago, 2017 has been a great year for Thucydides.

The old Greek historian is having quite a renaissance. Of course, he's always been there, but the Whitehouse is interested in himm, so everyone else is as well, especially with regard to the often mentioned, "Thucydides’s Trap."

For those not familiar with his work, The History Of The Peloponnesian War, in her article earlier this month in The Atlantic, our guest this week outlines where people should focus.

Thucydides is often associated with hard-edged realism, as in the quote “the strong do what they will, the weak suffer what they must.” ... But it’s important to remember that those views are one thread in a tapestry—Thucydides recounts the views of the war's combatants, but he doesn’t endorse them. In fact, the states that profess those hard-edged sentiments are plunged into ruin by them.

When and how they take the plunge has, at the crucial moments of decision, everything to do with rambunctious crowds or ambitious usurpers of their betters egging on policies that result in the destruction of their state’s power.

For this and related topics, please join us this Sunday with our guest Kori Schake for the full hour.

Kori is a research fellow at the Hoover Institution. She teaches Thinking About War at Stanford, and with Jim Mattis edited Warriors and Citizens: American Views on Our Military. Her book on the Anglo-American hegemonic transition comes out from Harvard in the fall.
Jul 23 2017
1 hour 2 mins
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Rank #14: Episode 486: Waiting on a National Strategy with Dr. David Gioe

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Do we have the means, capabilities, national will - and more important - the support of the American people to meet the demands from the global entanglements we are obligated by?

What is the grand strategy?

To discuss these and related questions this Sunday will be Dr. David Gioe. We will use his recent article in The National Interest, Make America Strategic Again, as the starting point for our talk.

Dr. David Gioe is Assistant Professor of History at the US Military Academy at West Point, where he also serves as History Fellow for the Army Cyber Institute. He earned a BA in History and Social Science from Wheaton College, an MA from the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service, and a PhD in Politics and International Studies from the University of Cambridge.

He retains his commission as a senior officer in the Navy Reserve and is assigned to the Defense Intelligence Agency’s Defense Attaché Service.
May 02 2019
1 hour 7 mins
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Rank #15: Episode 173: Back to the Littorals with Milan Vego

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If the requirement is to be able to operate, fight, and win in the Littorals - is the Littoral Combat Ship the answer?
Other nations have the same requirement - yet have come up with different answers.
Are we defining our requirements properly in face of larger Fleet needs and the threats we expect?
What platforms and systems need to be looked at closer if we are to have the best mix of capabilities to meet our requirements?
Using his article in Armed Forces Journal, Go smaller: Time for the Navy to get serious about the littorals, as a stepping off place, our guest for the full hour will be Milan Vego, PhD, Professor of Joint Military Operations at the US Naval War College.
Apr 28 2013
1 hour 4 mins
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Rank #16: Episode 429: Making Sense of Natsec's Madness with Phil Ewing

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If you've lost lock during the news-cycle Imbroglio on what is important in the national security arena, then you need to take an hour out and spend an hour with us for a few from the eye of the storm.

Our guest for the full hour will be Phil Ewing.

Phil is NPR's national security editor. He helps direct coverage of the military, the intelligence community, counterterrorism, veterans and other topics for the radio and online. Ewing joined the network in 2015 from Politico, where he was a Pentagon correspondent and defense editor. Previously he served as managing editor of Military.com and before that he covered the U.S. Navy for the Military Times newspapers.

From the budget battles on the Hill, the Navy's fight for its future fleet, to Russia's freezing of the cherry blossoms (hey, it could happen) - we'll cover it.
Mar 25 2018
1 hour 3 mins
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Rank #17: Episode 444: The Slow March to FITZGERALD & MCCAIN, with J. C. Harvey, Jr,.

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The conditions that brought us to the series of events in WESTPAC in 2017 did not happen over night. They did not happen in one PCS cycle, or under one command climate. Layer by layer from many sources, it took time to get to where we found it.

Our guest for the full hour to discuss his views of the latent causes of what is now generally accepted as a systemic failure of a "new normal" will be J.C. Harvey, Jr., Admiral USN (Ret.).

Admiral Harvey retired from the Navy in November, 2012 after serving as the Commander, U.S. Fleet Forces Command, in Norfolk, Virginia.

In his 39 year Navy career, he specialized in naval nuclear propulsion, surface ship & Carrier strike-group operations & Navy-wide manpower management/personnel policy development. He served in a variety of operational command positions at sea, as the Navy’s Chief of Naval Personnel (the senior uniformed human resources official in the Navy) & as the Director, Navy Staff immediately prior to commanding U.S. Fleet Forces.

Since his retirement, Admiral Harvey has joined the Board of Directors of the Navy Memorial Foundation, where he currently serves as Chairman of the Board, & serves as an Outside Director of AT Kearney, PSDS.

On 12 January, 2014, he was sworn in as a member of Governor McAuliffe’s cabinet where he served as the Commonwealth’s Secretary of Veteran & Defense Affairs until 31 August, 2017.

A few months later, he joined the Institute of Defense Analyses as the Director, Strategy, Forces & Resources Division.

Born and raised in Baltimore, MD, Admiral Harvey is a graduate of the Phillips Exeter Academy, the US Naval Academy & the John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University.

Admiral Harvey & his wife, Mary Ellen, now reside in Vienna, Virginia & have two grown children, Sarah & David.
Jul 08 2018
1 hour 3 mins
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Rank #18: Episode 404: Best of Clausewitz with Donald Stoker

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He is quoted often, correctly and incorrectly, but few have actually read his works in full - and even fewer know much about the man himself, Major General Carl von Clausewitz, Kingdom of Prussia.
Out guest for the full hour will be Donald Stoker, author of the new book, Clausewitz: His Life and Work. Stoker is a  Professor of Strategy and Policy for the U.S. Naval War College's program at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California.
His previous book, The Grand Design: Strategy and the U.S. Civil War, won the distinguished Fletcher Pratt award for the best non-fiction Civil War book of 2010. Past winners include Bruce Catton and Shelby Foote.

Episode first broadcast in DEC14.
Oct 01 2017
1 hour
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Rank #19: Episode 420: Surface Readiness; History, Causes, & Cures with Kevin Eyer

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After the events of the last year in WESTPAC, there is general agreement that there is something wrong with our surface force. There have always been "incidents" involving warships - including tremendous loss of life. This time, things seem different - and we are still only in the beginning of a general reassessment of what needs to be done to make our surface navy better.

Our guest this week to explore these and related issues will be Kevin Eyer, CAPT USN (Ret.). As a starting off point, we will review his JAN 2018 article in the US Naval Institute, Proceedings, What Happened To Our Surface Forces?

Kevin is a retired Surface Warfare Captain and the son of a Surface Warfare Captain.   He graduated from Penn State, after which he served in seven cruisers, ultimately commanding three; Thomas S. Gates, Shiloh and Chancellorsville.  He has served on the Navy Staff, the Joint Staff, and he attained his masters degree from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, at Tufts University.  Captain Eyer is a frequent contributor to Proceedings Magazine, and a regular commentator on Navy issues.
Jan 21 2018
1 hour 6 mins
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Rank #20: Episode 435: STEM and the Education of a Navy Leader

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The majority of our officers come from two sources, NROTC and the United States Naval Academy. The Navy has a policy a bias towards STEM majors (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) to the point where 65 percent of USNA Midshipmen major in STEM.

Is this in the best interest of educating future officers of our modern Navy and Marine Corps so they can effectively lead Sailors and Marines at war and peace?

To discuss this and related issues for the full hour will be USNA Midshipman First Class Kirk Wolff. We will use his recent Proceedings Today article, Rethinking the Naval Academy Curriculum as a starting off point.

Kirk is originally from Morristown, Tennessee. He majored in Political Science at USNA and will serve as a surface warfare officer upon commissioning on May 25, 2018.
May 06 2018
1 hour 3 mins
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