The intelligence discipline – and the U.S. Intelligence Community – requires a very broad range of activity, from tasking, to collection, to processing. Within the collection slice of that intel pie, there are many and varied sub-disciplines – The “INTs.” But what are they? Let’s find out about Signals Intelligence, or SIGINT. The Department of […]
How George Patton became the Army’s Master of SwordsHistory
We’ve all heard of General George S. Patton. Maybe you’ve seen the movie. Maybe you did a report on him in school. Maybe you even have a grandfather who served under him in World War II. Maybe you’re a Cav or Armor troop. (Scouts out!) All of these and more are good reasons to know […]
Invading Grenada: Operation Urgent FuryHistory
With all this talk lately about attempted American covert action in the Caribbean and Latin America — and the Secretary of State having to remind everyone that the United States Government wasn’t invovled in the botched attempt — I thought it prudent to remind everyone of what actual American military action in the region looks like. Operation Urgent Fury, the U.S.-led Invasion of Grenada, began on October 25th of 1983 and lasted until December 15th. Though the “invasion” portion itself only took three days. Nice and short.
The WWII spy roots of the phrase ‘secret squirrel’History
The military is a community just like any other. It has its own social norms and stigmas. Its own culture and subcultures. The intelligence community — and all its disparate and freaky sub-subcultures — is no different: a microcosmic analog of its macrocosmic parent. That microcosm has all the trappings of a community, complete with its own lingo, legends, and lore. What follows is an example of one such nugget of lore.
What is the global Community of Democracies?History
The world has a lot of international organizations. The United Nations, the World Health Organization, and NATO being the most well-known. But when it comes to the number of these global organizations — and the number of nations on their rosters — few are as narrow of purpose while being wide in membership as the […]
America’s 4 ‘functional’ Unified Combatant CommandsMilitary Affairs
As mentioned in the previous COCOM primer, unified combatant commands, or COCOMs, are the highest possible echelon of military command. They are overseen by the Unified Command Plan, or UCP, which guarantees that each COCOM is aligned with overarching national policy objectives. And each of the 11 COCOMs is led by a four-star flag officer, […]
What is a Combatant Command?Military Affairs
It seems a rather odd term for a command in the military — an organization based around combat — to be specifically labeled as a “combatant” command. But that’s exactly what one of the highest levels of command in the military is called. What is a combatant command? How many are there? Where are they […]
Strengthening Indo-Pacific security: Exercise MalabarNavy
The United States Navy has just wrapped another security partnership exercise in the Indian Ocean this month. Exercise Malabar is a trilateral naval exercise. This exercise is shared between India, Japan, and the United States, as permanent partners. Australia and Singapore — the additional non-permanent partners — have participated in the past; Australia, twice. Malabar […]
USS Langley: The United States Navy’s first aircraft carrierHistory
Recently, the United States Navy celebrated the 98th anniversary of the commissioning of its very first aircraft carrier, the USS Langley (CV-1). CV-1 was named after American aeronautics engineer, Astronomer, aviation pioneer, bolometer, and physicist, Samuel Piermont Langley (the same guy whose name is on a NASA research center, an Air Force base, a mountain, […]
How the military measures language fluency: The DLPTCareer
Were you raised in a multilingual environment? Did you take enough French in high school to do more than order a baguette or sweet-talk someone? Can you watch an anime without the subtitles on? If for some reason you are already proficient in a language other than English, the United States Military’s got a test for you to prove it.