September 6, 2013  

Scales on Syria | Tell a story | General-speak

In the Washington Post, retired Army MG Robert Scales says U.S. military leaders don’t support strikes on Syria. offers its roundup of the best think tank reports on Syria.

“Strategic messaging” may be yesterday’s jargon, but it’s still vital to communicate a narrative, argues Cmdr. Elton C. Parker III, currently the Special Assistant to the President and Military Assistant to the Provost of National Defense University.

And just for fun on a Friday, a pair of translation guides:

  • Foreign Policy’s Micah Zenko on State Departmentese. (Sample: ” ‘Policy X is not aimed at any one country’: Policy X is aimed at China or Iran.”)
  • Doctrine_Man!! on what the general says and what the staff hears. (Sample: “General: This is a bold plan. Meaning: This won’t end well. What the staff hears: You should be the general.”)

Warlord’s Quote of the Day

“The military institution is a mirror of its parent society, reflecting strengths and weaknesses. … The highest service of the military to the state may well lie in the moral sphere.” — Sir John Hackett, to the cadet corps at the USAF Academy, ca. 1960

Contributed by Reverend (Col.) Robert Certain, USAFR ret., a POW in Vietnam who became an Air Force chaplain and an Episcopal priest who presided over President Ford’s funeral services. From a list compiled by the Warlord Loop, a private email forum for national security experts.

Keep in touch

For more articles on strategy and other military affairs, subscribe to our bimonthly e-newsletter, follow us on Twitter, or add the AFJ Daily RSS feed to your newsreader. And tell us about your own must-reads at