Small Wars Journal

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01/21/2021 News & Commentary – National Security

News & commentary by Dave Maxwell. Edited and published by Daniel Riggs.

1. China's Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Announces Sanctions on Pompeo and Others

2. Read the full text of Amanda Gorman's inaugural poem 'The Hill We Climb'

3. Army falsely denied Flynn's brother was involved in key part of military response to Capitol riot

4. Beijing Fills the Mideast Vacuum

5. Defined By Scandal At Voice of America, CEO Resigns At Biden's Request

6. QAnon believers struggle with inauguration.

7. President Biden's Tech To-Do List

8. Amazon offers Biden resources for COVID-19 vaccine rollout

9. China revives conspiracy theory of US army link to Covid

10. Irregular Warfare (IW) - Commentary (Jan 2021) | SOF News

11. 'Really quite shocking': Inside the ugly transition at the Pentagon

12. 'Are you QAnon?': One Trump official's brush with an internet cult gone horribly wrong

13. SecDef nominee pledges to evaluate information operations

14. Perspective | The media can be glad for the Biden White House's return to normalcy. But let's not be lulled.

15. Biden is inheriting a nonexistent Covid-19 vaccine plan from Trump administration, sources say

16. EXC: Biden Just Picked A CIA Director With a 7-Year-Long Relationship with Chinese Communist Party Fronts

17. EXC: Biden Personnel Chief Served At Chinese Intel Org Flagged By FBI For Recruiting Western Spies

 

1. China's Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Announces Sanctions on Pompeo and Others

fmprc.gov.cn

This action seems to be an attempt to punish these former officials. Is this intended to try to make them unemployable with any company or organization that has ties to China?  This is just not about banning them from traveling to China, Hong Kong or Macao

Is this a form of Chinese Lawfare? (Legal warfare for China, like artillery, prepares the 'terrain' for further action. Chinese legal warfare is designed to weaken the will of domestic and foreign populations, and to diminish their trust in law as well as in their leaders - all with the purpose of building support for China's interests. China's long-term approach is effective in building its narratives and furthering its efforts to achieve legitimacy. https://sites.duke.edu/lawfire/2020/02/02/guest-post-andres-munoz-mosqueras-and-nikoleta-chalanoulis-essay-china-an-active-practitioner-of-legal-warfare/)

More importantly is this intended as a message to the policymakers in the Biden Administration?  If you mess with China you will be unemployable after you leave the administration?

 

2. Read the full text of Amanda Gorman's inaugural poem 'The Hill We Climb'

cnbc.com By Jennifer Liu

For those who missed it, Miss Gorman's brilliant recitation can be seen at this link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=whZqA0z61jY&fbclid

It is worth watching.  I think this poem will be studied in English classes for years to come. 

 

3. Army falsely denied Flynn's brother was involved in key part of military response to Capitol riot

The Washington Post · January 21, 2021

Hmmm....

 

4. Beijing Fills the Mideast Vacuum

WSJ · by Robert D. Kaplan

A provocative subtitle.

Conclusion: “For centuries British foreign policy was aimed at preventing any one power from dominating continental Europe. Similarly, American foreign policy should now aim at preventing any one power from dominating Afro-Eurasia-what the great British geographer Halford Mackinder labeled the "World-Island." By linking Europe with East Asia through the Middle East, China would eventually develop the ability to threaten North America economically and militarily. This is ultimately what Belt and Road is all about. The Biden administration must focus on stopping it.”

 

5. Defined By Scandal At Voice of America, CEO Resigns At Biden's Request

NPR · by David Folkenflik · January 20, 2021

Certainly not unexpected.

 

6. QAnon believers struggle with inauguration.

The New York Times · by Kevin Roose · January 20, 2021

Wow!

Again, it is difficult for me to believe how anyone can take QAnon seriously.  I wonder if the QAnon "influencers" actually believe the BS they spew?

Excerpts:

“Others expressed anger with QAnon influencers who had told believers to expect a dramatic culmination on Inauguration Day.

"A lot of YouTube journalists have just lost one hell of a lot of credibility," wrote a commenter in one QAnon chat room.

Still others attempted to shift the goal posts, and simply told their fellow "anons" to hang on and wait for future, unspecified developments.

"Don't worry about what happens at 12 p.m.," wrote one QAnon influencer. "Watch what happens after that."

And some appeared to realize that they'd been duped.

"It's over," one QAnon chat room participant wrote, just after Mr. Biden's swearing-in.

"Wake up," another wrote. "We've been had."

 

7. President Biden's Tech To-Do List

The New York Times · by Shira Ovide · January 20, 2021

Excerpts:

What else? Mr. Biden's economic revival plan includes suggestions to "launch the most ambitious effort ever" to modernize U.S. cyberdefenses. Maybe this is the year for a federal data privacy law? And there are rifts among Democrats on special employment treatment for "gig" workers.

The most urgent priorities for the new administration are to end the pandemic and help Americans recover from the damage. But how the U.S. government handles these complex tech questions will also have a big effect on Americans and others around the world.

 

8. Amazon offers Biden resources for COVID-19 vaccine rollout

TechCrunch · by Brian Heater

 

9. China revives conspiracy theory of US army link to Covid

The Guardian · by Helen Davidson · January 20, 2021

Excerpts:

“Tit-for-tat accusations of the virus beginning in a lab have bubbled since at least mid-2020, after China's attempts to cover up the initial outbreak. In recent months Chinese officials have ramped up efforts to suggest the virus began outside of China, airing theories without evidence linking it to US military personnel, and there has been blanket state media coverage of virus detections on frozen food imports and ice-cream.

WHO's director of the health emergencies programme, Michael Ryan, said it was "highly speculative" to argue that coronavirus came from outside China, and investigations should start where the first confirmed human cases emerged.”

 

10. Irregular Warfare (IW) - Commentary (Jan 2021) | SOF News

sof.news · by John Friberg · January 20, 2021

 

11. 'Really quite shocking': Inside the ugly transition at the Pentagon

Politico· January 20, 2021

Not a good look for the Pentagon.

 

12. 'Are you QAnon?': One Trump official's brush with an internet cult gone horribly wrong

Politico· by Josh Gerstein · January 19, 2021

A study in disinformation and active measures? But by who? This is a fascinating story.

 

13. SecDef nominee pledges to evaluate information operations

Defense News · by Mark Pomerleau · January 20, 2021

We need this done beyond DOD.  We need a national level effort to effectively employ this critical national instrument of power.

 

  1.   Perspective | The media can be glad for the Biden White House's return to normalcy. But let's not be lulled.

The Washington Post · by Margaret Sullivan·  January 21, 2021

 

A very interesting and important critique.

Excerpt:

"If you believe that now with Trump gone you can go back to the way things were, you will be complicit in allowing miscreants to avoid the blame and focus they deserve, and create more ground for lies and bombast," wrote Norman Ornstein, an emeritus scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, in a powerful Twitter thread.

He's right. By the end of the Trump administration, the national press was doing things differently, and better. More than in the past, some journalists (certainly not all) were standing up for democracy without embarrassment, without fearing they'd be called partisan. Some had figured out how to present an election not as a mere horserace, but as a question about substance, character and the nation's future.

 

15. Biden is inheriting a nonexistent Covid-19 vaccine plan from Trump administration, sources say

CNN · by MJ Lee

How can this be? A leadership failure on an unprecedented scale if this is accurate.

 

16. EXC: Biden Just Picked A CIA Director With a 7-Year-Long Relationship with Chinese Communist Party Fronts

thenationalpulse.com

Hmmm...This is also an attack on the Carnegie Foundation.

 

17. EXC: Biden Personnel Chief Served At Chinese Intel Org Flagged By FBI For Recruiting Western Spies

thenationalpulse.com

 

--------------

 

"Nobody can decide for himself whether he is going to be a human being. The only question open to him is whether he will be an ignorant, undeveloped one or one who has sought to reach the highest point he is capable of attaining."

- Robert M. Hutchins

From T.S. Eliot's essay "The Perfect Critic" for the literary journal Athenaeum in 1920:  The vast accumulations of knowledge - or at least of information - deposited by the nineteenth century have been responsible for an equally vast ignorance. When there is so much to be known, when there are so many fields of knowledge in which the same words are used with different meanings, when everyone knows a little about a great many things, it becomes increasingly difficult for anyone to know whether he knows what he is talking about or not. And when we do not know, or when we do not know enough, we tend always to substitute emotions for thoughts.

"The primary purpose of the Rolex is not as a timepiece but rather as a life insurance policy. When the situation goes pear-shaped and you've somehow made it to the airport, the Rolex buys you a seat on the last flight out of Heart of Darkness International Airport. As your aircraft circles the city, you look down at the rising columns of black smoke and imagine the scene downtown in the city square where they're chopping the few remaining Westerners up into monkey meat, you look at your wrist where your treasured timepiece used to be and you think 2 things: A) 'Well I guess the Rolex finally paid for itself,' and B) 'I can always buy another watch ... ' "Unknowndfa

DanielRiggs Thu, 01/21/2021 - 9:40am
01/21/2021 News & Commentary – Korea

News & commentary by Dave Maxwell. Edited and published by Daniel Riggs.

1. Biden's speech signals better ties with Seoul, less drama with Pyongyang

2. South Korea's President Moon: 'America Is Back'

3. Moon vows close cooperation with Biden for Korea peace process

4. Foreign Ministry's top priority is talks with Pyongyang

5. Sovereignty and alliance cannot be haggled (Korea)

6. Unification minister vows to restart Korea peace process in cooperation with Biden administration

7. Defense ministry vows push for regular inter-Korean military talks, swifter OPCON transfer

8. Analysts weigh in on Moon-Biden partnership

9. Blinken says U.S. is 'better positioned' to deal with N. Korea when working with allies

10. Moon Sacks Loyal Foreign Minister

11. Blinken indicates changing course in North Korea policy

12. Understanding N. Korean capabilities important part of intelligence: DNI nominee

13. N. Korea tightens antivirus campaign as party congress, military parade end

14. U.S. expert voices skepticism over N.K. push for nuke sub

15. Restrictions on movement in North Korea are causing "severe side effects"

16. North Korea allows some people with relatives overseas to write letters asking for help

17. Seoul to procure enough COVID-19 vaccines for North, South Korea

 

1. Biden's speech signals better ties with Seoul, less drama with Pyongyang

en.yna.co.kr · by 변덕근 · January 21, 2021

This is quite an interpretation. We should note that President Biden did not mention a single foreign country (that jumped right out to my wife as we watched the speech).  South Korean media parses every word (or omitted word) for meaning for and impact on Korea.

 

2. South Korea's President Moon: 'America Is Back'

Barron's · by AFP - Agence France Presse

President Moon wins the award for the best tweet by a foreign leader.

We should remember that the only OpEd President Biden wrote in the foreign press during the election process was published by Yonhap and it discussed the ROK/US alliance and the Korean peninsula. That made a statement more than the words in any speech. "Special contribution by U.S. Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden" https://en.yna.co.kr/view/AEN20201030000500325

 

3. Moon vows close cooperation with Biden for Korea peace process

en.yna.co.kr · by 이치동 · January 21, 2021

Peace at any cost.  President Moon is doubling down on his peace vision and working to shape the information environment to influence the Biden administration to support a vision which is based on the false assumption that Kim Jong-un shares his vision and will seek peace on mutually acceptable terms.  Kim Jong-un only wants peace on his terms and that means that he dominates the Korean peninsula.  

I think President Moon is misguided if he thinks the Biden administration will support concessions and sanctions relief without any substantive action from the regime.  But the most important thing for the ROK ?US alliance is to re-examine strategic assumptions and ensure they are sufficiently aligned.  They were not sufficiently aligned during the Trump administration and they are not now during the Biden administration. 

 

4. Foreign Ministry's top priority is talks with Pyongyang

koreajoongangdaily.joins.com· by Sarah Kim

The ROK will double down on its peace vision.  Peace at any cost.

Excerpt: In the report, the Foreign Ministry outlined its plans to continue diplomatic efforts to realize peace on the Korean Peninsula, play a role as a middle power to bring together countries globally and practice people-centered diplomacy.

 

5. Sovereignty and alliance cannot be haggled (Korea)

donga.com · January 20, 2021

A critical Oped.

Conclusion: 

“Such a nonsensical comment was made because President Moon has not shaken off the illusionary feelings about the summit in Pyongyang three years ago. He said Kim still has a clear willingness for peace, dialogue, and denuclearization. This is why the president gave a naïve answer that all can be resolved when the peace process becomes successful in response to North Korea’s threats to enhance its nuclear capabilities. The efforts for dialogue and military exercises share the same goal. However, the two should go together. If one of them is neglected, it will lead to submission or dissolution.

 

6. Unification minister vows to restart Korea peace process in cooperation with Biden administration

en.yna.co.kr · by 이원주 · January 21, 2021

Who is in charge of the "peace process" with north Korea -Foreign Affairs or Unification?  Who is in charge of denuclearization negotiations: Foreign Affairs or Unification?

And of course one of the issues in the ROK/US alliance is there is no US counterpart for the Ministry of Unification which makes things complicated when the Minister makes these kinds of statements: 

 

7. Defense ministry vows push for regular inter-Korean military talks, swifter OPCON transfer

en.yna.co.kr · by 오석민 · January 21, 2021

I wish the press would get this right. There is no OPCON transfer.  There is no transfer of OPCON front he US to the ROK.  The US does not have OPCON of US forces and when the transition process is complete with a general officer assuming command of the ROK/US CFC the ROK will not have OPCON of US forces.  Both governments will provide forces to the ROK/US CFC (should they choose to).and the commander of the ROK/US CFC will answer to both nations through the MIlitary Committee and the Security Consultative process. Both countries have established the ROK/US CFC and have tasked it with the mission to deter north Korean attack and if the north does attack it is charged with the defense of the ROK and the defeat of the nKPA.  But as long as the bi-national ROK/US CFC exists it will answer equally to both countries through the Military Committee.  So there is no transfer of OPCON from Washington to Seoul.  

This is also, why we need a comprehensive information campaign to inform political leaders, pundits, the press, and the public about what is OPCON transition and how it works.

 

8. Analysts weigh in on Moon-Biden partnership

koreajoongangdaily.joins.com

Another example of the ROK's shaping operation for the Biden Administration.  However, these are some interesting statistics among foreign affairs experts:

“However, according to a group of 34 foreign affairs and security experts surveyed by the JoongAng Ilbo, only one responded that the Biden administration could consider partially easing sanctions on North Korea without progress in its denuclearization for the sake of improving inter-Korean relations.

The newspaper surveyed 34 Korean, American, Chinese and Japanese experts from Jan. 11 to 18 to gauge the Biden administration's views on key foreign affairs and security issues and prospects for cooperation with the Moon government.

The Biden administration could consider the lifting of certain sanctions with the dismantlement of North Korea’s Yongbyon nuclear complex, as proposed by leader Kim during a Hanoi summit with Trump in February 2019, according to 23.5 percent of the respondents, or eight experts.

The second North-U.S. summit in Hanoi ended with no deal as the two sides clashed over the scope of denuclearization need for sanctions relief, with Trump demanding measures beyond the dismantlement of the Yongbyon nuclear complex in North Pyongan Province, which could include revealing undisclosed nuclear facilities or a more concrete roadmap for denuclearization.

Likewise, 55.9 percent of the respondents, or 19 experts, said that the Biden administration could consider partial sanctions relief if North Korea agrees to dismantle Yongbyon and more facilities, or commits to a denuclearization roadmap.”

 

9. Blinken says U.S. is 'better positioned' to deal with N. Korea when working with allies

en.yna.co.kr · by 변덕근 · January 20, 2021

A BFO, but an important BFO (BFO = blinding flash of the obvious).

 

10. Moon Sacks Loyal Foreign Minister

english.chosun.com

She has been loyal even if she has not always been as empowered as she might be.  Again, this cabinet change is a clear indication that President Moon is doubling down on peace at any cost.

 

11. Blinken indicates changing course in North Korea policy

The Korea Times· by Kang Seung-woo · January 20, 2021

Assumptions about north Korea.  It’s the assumptions, stupid.  I am going to beat this horse.

I wonder who at State is working the SMA negotiation. I hope we can put a solid 5 year agreement in place soon.

 

12. Understanding N. Korean capabilities important part of intelligence: DNI nominee

en.yna.co.kr · by 변덕근 · January 20, 2021

To the press: And INTENT!!  We must understand the nature of the Kim family regime and its objectives and strategy in addition to its capabilities.

I am sure your headline editor was limited in space but they should pay attention to what the DNI nominee said: "Understanding the capabilities and intentions of a country like North Korea is a critical responsibility of the intelligence community," Haines said in a written answer to questions from the Senate Intelligence Committee as part of her confirmation hearing

 

13. N. Korea tightens antivirus campaign as party congress, military parade end

en.yna.co.kr · by 이원주 · January 20, 2021

They should have been wearing masks for the entire 8th Party Congress.

 

14. U.S. expert voices skepticism over N.K. push for nuke sub

en.yna.co.kr · by 송상호 · January 20, 2021

We need to be skeptical but wary.  Yes this is complicated technology.  But the regime has surprised us with its advances so we should not remain complacent.

 

15. Restrictions on movement in North Korea are causing "severe side effects"

dailynk.com· by Mun Dong Hoi · January 20, 2021

What will be the short and long term effects of these restrictions?  We must be on the lookout of indications of instability.

Excerpt: A source in North Pyongan Province informed Daily NK on Jan. 13 that, “Currently, people who need to travel to do business or to obtain food are absolutely incapable of traveling,” and that “the number of households suffering chronic food shortage has spiked for this reason.”

 

16. North Korea allows some people with relatives overseas to write letters asking for help

dailynk.com · by Jong So Yong · January 21, 2021

I imagine this is an intelligence operation.  They will collect information on those communicating with defectors.  Of course the letters coming into and going out of north Korea will be examined.  If they can gather information on defectors they could target them for intelligence, for cyber attacks, or even for physical attacks.

And then of course if Koreans do receive resources officials will impose heavy "taxes" on the resources received.

This may be the north Korean equivalent of putting a homeless person on a street corner to beg for money.  When they receive money corrupt officials will pocket part of it. 

 

17. Seoul to procure enough COVID-19 vaccines for North, South Korea

upi.com · by Elizabeth Shim · January 21, 2021

  1.  How will the Korean people in the South feel about this?

Would the regime accept this?  Do we think this will influence north Korean behavior? Or will the regime interpret this as another successful line of effort to its blackmail diplomacy?

 

----------------

 

"Nobody can decide for himself whether he is going to be a human being. The only question open to him is whether he will be an ignorant, undeveloped one or one who has sought to reach the highest point he is capable of attaining."

- Robert M. Hutchins

 

From T.S. Eliot’s essay “The Perfect Critic” for the literary journal Athenaeum in 1920:  The vast accumulations of knowledge - or at least of information - deposited by the nineteenth century have been responsible for an equally vast ignorance. When there is so much to be known, when there are so many fields of knowledge in which the same words are used with different meanings, when everyone knows a little about a great many things, it becomes increasingly difficult for anyone to know whether he knows what he is talking about or not. And when we do not know, or when we do not know enough, we tend always to substitute emotions for thoughts.

 

"The primary purpose of the Rolex is not as a timepiece but rather as a life insurance policy. When the situation goes pear-shaped and you've somehow made it to the airport, the Rolex buys you a seat on the last flight out of Heart of Darkness International Airport. As your aircraft circles the city, you look down at the rising columns of black smoke and imagine the scene downtown in the city square where they're chopping the few remaining Westerners up into monkey meat, you look at your wrist where your treasured timepiece used to be and you think 2 things: A) 'Well I guess the Rolex finally paid for itself,' and B) 'I can always buy another watch ... ’ "UnknownDave 

DanielRiggs Thu, 01/21/2021 - 9:21am
1/19/2021 News & Commentary - Korea

News & commentary by Dave Maxwell. Edited and published by Duncan Moore.

1. Moon is incapable of change

2. See the weapons at North Korea’s latest military parade

3. Biden's team may roll back rapprochement with Pyongyang

4. Outgoing U.S. envoy warns about Pyongyang

5. Exclusive: Daily NK obtains materials explaining specifics of new "anti-reactionary thought" law

6. South Korea seeks early Biden summit to revive talks with Kim

7. S. Korea ready to talk any issues with N. Korea to ease tensions: defense ministry

8. N.K. leader urges devotion from newly elected members of Cabinet, ruling party

9. Moon meets Amb. Harris, vows close cooperation with Biden administration

10. 31 USFK-linked people test positive for coronavirus upon arrival in S. Korea

11. North Korea’s Kim could be planning missile launch to welcome Biden administration

12. Japan urges South Korea to drop wartime compensation demands

13. Moon says history-related issues should be viewed independently

14. New infection cases under 400 for 2nd day; virus curve sliding downhill

15. Biden can make progress where Trump failed on North Korea

16. This is why Samsung head Lee Jae Yong has been jailed and what it means for the tech giant

 

1. Moon is incapable of change

Chosun Ilbo · January 19, 2021

A very critical OpEd  criticizing Moon on a number of issues. But it is his view of (and strategic assumptions about) North Korea and Kim Jong-un that is most troubling and that will potentially cause problems for the ROK/US alliance. If the US and the ROK cannot sufficiently align our strategic assumptions about North Korea, we are going to have a lot of friction in the alliance. And I think his assumptions about the Biden administration possibly providing sanctions relief in return talks illustrates a misunderstanding that will be harmful.

 

2. See the weapons at North Korea’s latest military parade

Defense News · Mike Yeo & Kim Tong-Hyung · January 15, 2021

Some useful photos.

 

3. Biden’s team may roll back rapprochement with Pyongyang

Korea Joong Ang Daily · Shim Kyu-Seok · January 19, 2021

A common theme among the Korean press is that members of the Biden national security team are expected to take a harder line toward North Korean than they did during the Clinton and Obama administrations. President Moon seems not to have recognized this.

The US and ROK may not be in step. This is why the first order of business for the alliance is to work on strategic alignment toward Kim Jong-un and North Korea.

 

4. Outgoing U.S. envoy warns about Pyongyang

Korea Joong Ang Daily · Sarah Kim · January 19, 2021

The ambassador is conducting diplomacy up until the last days at post to include supporting the incoming administration. He may be a political appointee, but he is not a politico.

 

5. Exclusive: Daily NK obtains materials explaining specifics of new "anti-reactionary thought" law

Daily NK · Jang Seul Gi · January 19, 2021

I hate to beat a dead horse (or, in this case, more than one horse). Two important points:

First, this is another indication of how much the regime fears the Korean people living in the North. The regime fears them more than the US. It must exert extreme control over the population. There must be the systematic denial of human rights because that is critical to keeping Kim Jong-Un in power.

Second, this illustrates the importance of information (and information control) in North Korea.  As disjointed and unsynchronized as the information and influence activities of the ROK and US might be, information does have an effect inside North Korea and the regime is deathly afraid of it. Just imagine the effects we could achieve with a comprehensive information and influence activities strategy.

 

6. South Korea seeks early Biden summit to revive talks with Kim

Bloomberg · Jeong-Ho Lee · January 18, 2021

When I first saw the headline, I thought it was Moon advocating for an early Biden-Kim summit, but he is talking about a Moon-Biden summit. However, I would refrain from having a summit until the MOFA-State strategy working group works out a strategic alignment on key issues regarding North Korea to include the fundamental assumptions about the nature and strategy of Kim Jong-Un upon which alliance policy direction and strategy should be developed.

 

7. S. Korea ready to talk any issues with N. Korea to ease tensions: defense ministry

Yonhap News Agency · 오석민 · January 19, 2021

South Korea must be cautious with these types of statements. If it discusses ROK/US alliance related issues with the north without prior consultation and coordination with the US, it will continue to generate friction within the alliance.

 

8. N.K. leader urges devotion from newly elected members of Cabinet, ruling party

Yonhap News Agency · 이원주 · January 19, 2021

 

9. Moon meets Amb. Harris, vows close cooperation with Biden administration

Yonhap News Agency · 이치동 · January 19, 2021

I hope Moon means what he says (I am sure he does on his terms). But again, if we cannot achieve sufficient alignment on strategic issues and assumptions about the North, we are going to have problems.

Nothing like having a "Soju experience."  With COVID we cannot drink Soju in the traditional way with the exchange of glasses (unless Soju can kill the COVID virus).

 

10. 31 USFK-linked people test positive for coronavirus upon arrival in S. Korea

Yonhap News Agency · 오석민 · January 19, 2021

 

11. North Korea’s Kim could be planning missile launch to welcome Biden administration

Washington Post · Simon Denyer & Joby Warrick · January 18, 2021

Maybe. Or maybe not. Key point - no conclusive evidence, but a launch would be in keeping with the pattern of the Kim family regime.

 

12. Japan urges South Korea to drop wartime compensation demands

Associated Press · Mari Yamaguchi · January 18, 2021

The Moon administration cannot overrule the courts.

 

13. Moon says history-related issues should be viewed independently

Dong-A Ilbo · Ji-Sun Choi · January 19, 2021

Moon and Suga must pledge to place national security and national prosperity first and to manage the historical issues without impacting on the priorities.

 

14. New infection cases under 400 for 2nd day; virus curve sliding downhill

Yonhap News Agency · 이민지 · January 19, 2021

 

15. Biden can make progress where Trump failed on North Korea

National Interest · Matt Abbott · January 18, 2021

Close but no cigar. Solving the  "Korea question" must be the long term goal and it must be understood that there will be no end to the nuclear threat and the human rights abuses until the Korea question is resolved, achieving the only acceptable durable political arrangement that will sustain, protect, and advance US and ROK/US alliance interests: a secure, stable, economically vibrant, non-nuclear Korean peninsula unified under a liberal constitutional form of government with respect for individual liberty, the rule of law, and human rights, determined by the Korean people. In short, a United Republic of Korea (UROK). This is the long-term objective. Now, let's begin the backward planning to achieve that.  Of course, one issue is the US cannot want this more than South Korea.

 

16. This is why Samsung head Lee Jae Yong has been jailed and what it means for the tech giant

Scotsman · Matt Brooks · January 18, 2021

And Moon has no love for Samsung.

 

“Science investigates; religion interprets. Science gives man knowledge, which is power; religion gives man wisdom, which is control. Science deals mainly with facts; religion deals mainly with values. The two are not rivals.”

- Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

"The character of a President colors his entire administration."

- Clark Clifford

"The presidency is not merely an administrative office....It is pre-eminently a place of moral leadership."

- Franklin D. Roosevelt

dwmiv Tue, 01/19/2021 - 1:22pm

1/19/2021 News & Commentary - National Security

Tue, 01/19/2021 - 1:07pm

News & commentary by Dave Maxwell. Edited and published by Duncan Moore.

1. They did their jobs well

2. Biden to bring back fired Pentagon official who led anti-ISIS effort

3. Van Hipp: retired Gen. Lloyd Austin would be outstanding defense secretary in Biden administration

4. More than 40 Guard troops in DC for Biden inauguration test positive for COVID; up to 25,000 troops now authorized

5. Gen. Mark Milley key to military continuity as Biden takes office

6. Parler website is back online after Amazon brought it offline

7. Biden's national security Cabinet nominees face Senate tests

8. Rotten to the core? How America’s political decay accelerated during the Trump era

9. The real threat to civilian control of the military

10. Forecasting the new administration's impact on defense

11. This teacher was called to protect the U.S. Capitol as a National Guard member. He now holds class from a Humvee.

12. Building immunity to disinformation

13. Amal Clooney decries 'legal charade' after journalist Maria Ressa charged again with libel

14. The Islamic State stopped talking about China

15. ‘A place to fund hope’: how Proud Boys and other fringe groups found refuge on a Christian fundraising website

16. QAnon adherents discussed posing as National Guard to try to infiltrate inauguration, according to FBI intelligence briefing

17. Biden’s CIA director signals a shift to the left

18. Competing for influence: operations in the information environment

19. Special operations news update - Monday, January 19, 2021

 

1. They did their jobs well

Wall Street Journal · January 18, 2021

I am not qualified to comment on many of these but to the foreign policy team I would add Steve Biegun, Harry Harris, Marc Knapper, Alex Wong, Marc Lambert and their deputies, action officers, and staff. When the Korea-US relationship is studied, I think it will reveal that they had very complex issues to manage with both the ROK/US Alliance and, of course, with North Korea. Although North Korea was not denuclearized, they managed the issues better than anyone could have expected.

 

2. Biden to bring back fired Pentagon official who led anti-ISIS effort

Politico · Lara Seligman · January 18, 2021

Potential future ASD SO/LIC.

 

3. Van Hipp: retired Gen. Lloyd Austin would be outstanding defense secretary in Biden administration

Fox News · Van Hipp · January 17, 2021

 

4. More than 40 Guard troops in DC for Biden inauguration test positive for COVID; up to 25,000 troops now authorized

Military Times · Howard Altman · January 17, 2021

A survey of National Guard activities and which states the troops are coming from.

 

5. Gen. Mark Milley key to military continuity as Biden takes office

Military Times · Robert Burns · January 17, 2021

Quite a description.

 

6. Parler website is back online after Amazon brought it offline

CNET · Sareena Dayaram · January 18, 2021

Go figure.

 

7. Biden’s national security Cabinet nominees face Senate tests

Associated Press · Robert Burns, Lolita C. Baldor, & Matthew Lee · January 19, 2021

Five hearings today. Should be an interesting day.

 

8. Rotten to the core? How America’s political decay accelerated during the Trump era

Foreign Affairs · Francis Fukuyama · January 18, 2021

I hope we are not at the end of history (again).

 

9. The real threat to civilian control of the military

Foreign Affairs · Risa Brooks · January 18, 2021

I do not think the officer corps has ever ignored politics. Politics are a fact of life. Most understand it (some more than other perhaps), respect it, and learn to operate within political constraints. But the officer coups should remain apolitical always.

 

10. Forecasting the new administration's impact on defense

National Defense · John C. Johnson · January 18, 2021

 

11. This teacher was called to protect the U.S. Capitol as a National Guard member. He now holds class from a Humvee.

Washington Post · Sydney Page · January 18, 2021

Another example of a great American serving on multiple levels.

 

12. Building immunity to disinformation

EEAS · January 18, 2021

There is terrible disinformation about COVID.  We all need to inoculate ourselves against it.

Some useful advice (for use beyond COVID disinformation).

 

13. Amal Clooney decries ‘legal charade’ after journalist Maria Ressa charged again with libel

Guardian · Rebecca Ratcliffe · January 19, 2021

Duterte is one of the biggest threats to the free press. 

 

14. The Islamic State stopped talking about China

War On the Rocks · Elliot Stewart · January 19, 2021

 

15. ‘A place to fund hope’: How Proud Boys and other fringe groups found refuge on a Christian fundraising website

Washington Post · Amy Brittain & David Willman · January 18, 2021

Follow the money.

 

16. QAnon adherents discussed posing as National Guard to try to infiltrate inauguration, according to FBI intelligence briefing

Washington Post · Carol D. Leonnig & Matt Zapotosky · January 19, 2021

It will never cease to boggle my mind about how much influence QAnon has.

But there seems to be an aggressive IO effort to undermine trust in the national guard and the military.

 

17. Biden’s CIA director signals a shift to the left

Asia Times · MK Bhadrakumar · January 19, 2021

 

18. Competing for influence: operations in the information environment

Modern War Institute · Andrew Milburn · January 16, 2021

Another Podcast worth listening to at this link.

 

19. Special Operations News Update - Monday, January 19, 2021

SOF News · January 19, 2021

A long roll-up of interesting SOF news.

 

“Science investigates; religion interprets. Science gives man knowledge, which is power; religion gives man wisdom, which is control. Science deals mainly with facts; religion deals mainly with values. The two are not rivals.”

- Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

"The character of a President colors his entire administration."

- Clark Clifford

"The presidency is not merely an administrative office....It is pre-eminently a place of moral leadership."

- Franklin D. Roosevelt

1/18/2021 News & Commentary - National Security

News & commentary by Dave Maxwell. Edited and published by Duncan Moore.

1. Among the insurrectionists

2. 41 minutes of fear: a video timeline from inside the Capitol siege

3. Misinformation dropped dramatically the week after Twitter banned Trump

4. FBI vetting Guard troops in DC amid fears of insider attack

5. Russia, Iran and China exploit Capitol Hill riot to push information operations, US intel concludes

6. TikTok picks up former US Sens. Lott and Breaux for post-Trump era

7. FBI moves on alleged members of extremist groups Oath Keepers, Three Percenters

8. Neglected history, forgotten lessons: the struggle for minds and wills relies on leadership first, organization second

9. China’s economy is growing faster now than before the coronavirus pandemic

10. What a Biden Administration means for multilateral diplomacy

11. One year, 400,000 coronavirus deaths: how the U.S. guaranteed its own failure

12. Two words that have enraged Beijing

13. Twitter, Facebook, and co: the growing problem of online radicalization

14. The Boogaloo Bois prepare for civil war

15. ‘It is a trap’: far-right freaks out about rallies it’s organized

 

1. Among the insurrectionists

New Yorker · Luke Mogelson · January 15, 2021

There is a 12-minute video of outside and inside our Capitol building during the insurrection at this link

Of course, video can be edited and manipulated, so we always have to take these things with a grain of salt. But I think the actions portrayed in this video are disgusting and shameful. The video shows a wide range of personality types from deliberate agitators, to radicalized extremists, to "true believers" (who think they are protecting our country and have some misguided romanticized notion that they are following in the footsteps of our founding fathers, but who have little understanding of our history and our Constitution which they claim they are defending), to useful idiots who have been manipulated, to simply idiots and mere sheeple following the crowd.

But part of this article’s conclusion makes me want to ask journalists to please interview the insurrections and ask the following questions:

1. If you are at war, how do you describe the end state you seek? What is the acceptable durable political arrangement that will be worth undertaking an insurrection (and it is not to "take back our country" or "defend our way of life")? I want to know how they are going to arrange our political environment, assuming they are successful with their insurrection.

2. What are the strategic assumptions under which they are operating and developing their strategy? Is it simply the big lie of #stopthesteal? Or is it the fear of the implementation of a socialist government? Or something else? Please identify all of your strategic assumptions.

3. How will violent actions accomplish the end state? What are the lines of effort necessary to reach the end state? Describe your theory of success or victory and what is the defeat mechanism for the opposition? Most importantly for the defeat mechanism, who is the opposition and what do you think they seek?

4. Is there a negotiating line of effort and, if so, with whom will you negotiate and what outcome do you seek through negotiations?

5. What is the organizational structure for this fight and how does command and control function?

 

2. 41 minutes of fear: a video timeline from inside the Capitol siege

Washington Post · Dalton Bennett et al · January 16, 2021

Here is the Washington Post's analysis of the insurrection. Please go to the link to view these useful graphics of the Capitol and the video.

Just so we are on the same sheet of music the definition of insurrection is "a violent uprising against an authority or government."  And this might be helpful for some:

“Rebellion and insurrection refer specifically to acts of violence against the state or its officers. This distinguishes the crime from sedition, which is the organized incitement to rebellion or civil disorder against the authority of the state.” - "Rebellion or Insurrection" by FindLaw Staff.

 

3. Misinformation dropped dramatically the week after Twitter banned Trump

Washington Post · Elizabeth Dwoskin & Craig Timberg · January 16, 2021

Important analysis here from Zignal Labs. We need to have the conversation about platform responsibilities and potential regulation.

 

4. FBI vetting Guard troops in DC amid fears of insider attack

Associated Press · Lolita C. Baldor · January 18, 2021

If I were advising the opposition/insurrections, I would generate all kinds of misinformation about rank-and-file soldiers in the National Guard to try to create an overreaction with a widespread purge based on false information. This approach would undermine the trust within organizations and a real breakdown in morale, thus weakening these units and perhaps even making some ineffective. We had better be careful about how this vetting occurs and what actions are taken.

 

5. Russia, Iran and China exploit Capitol Hill riot to push information operations, US intel concludes

Cyber Scoop · Sean Lyngaas · January 16, 2021

The revisionist and rogue powers are having a field day.

 

6. TikTok picks up former US Sens. Lott and Breaux for post-Trump era

Foreign Lobby · Julian Pecquet · January 17, 2021

A lot of data at the link.

Is TikTok a security risk to the US?

 

7. FBI moves on alleged members of extremist groups Oath Keepers, Three Percenters

Washington Post · Devlin Barrett & Spencer S. Hsu · January 18, 2021

This will harden the resolve of these groups and their fringe supporters. They will be blaming the new administration and claiming a fascist crackdown. They will create new narratives focused on undermining the legitimacy of the new administration.

 

8. Neglected history, forgotten lessons: the struggle for minds and wills relies on leadership first, organization second

NSI · Matthew Armstrong · January 17, 2021

For anyone interested in information and influence operations, this presentation from Matt Armstrong is very much worth watching. Great historical insights. We have to face the struggle for minds and wills and cast aside the idea of winning hearts and minds. And the only way we will be successful is through leadership at the very top.

 

9. China’s economy is growing faster now than before the coronavirus pandemic

Washington Post · Gerry Shih · January 18, 2021

Beware of China's economic data and what it reports.

 

10. What a Biden Administration means for multilateral diplomacy

National Interest · Amitai Etzioni · January 18, 2021

Conclusion: in short, the Biden administration will do well to focus on the burning issues at home and shore up multilateralism. However, it will need to draw mainly on other instruments of foreign policy, which entail a fair degree of unilateralism, if it is to deal with the major international challenges the United States faces.

 

11. One year, 400,000 coronavirus deaths: how the U.S. guaranteed its own failure

New York Times · Sara Mervosh et al · January 17, 2021

Sober analysis. It did not have to be this way. Can we learn from this?

 

12. Two words that have enraged Beijing

News.com.au · Benedict Brook · January 17, 2021

Spoiler alert: "Indo Pacific."

 

13. Twitter, Facebook, and co: the growing problem of online radicalization

Spiegel · Markus Becker et al · January 15, 2021

 

14. The Boogaloo Bois prepare for civil war

Defense One · Michael Mooney · January 16, 2021

Again, I wish a journalist would interview members of these groups and ask them to share their end state, defeat mechanism, and theory of success or victory.

 

15.  ‘It Is a Trap’: Far-Right Freaks Out About Rallies It’s Organized

Daily Beast · Will Sommer & Kelly, Weill · January 13, 2021

This could be good use of deceptive influence operations. If they can make these extremists think these rallies that are being organized online are traps, maybe it will serve as a deterrent. If authorities can conduct their own subversion efforts of these extremist groups to undermine trust and legitimacy, perhaps they will implode and no longer be viable as radicalizing organizations.

 

I Dream A World

I dream a world where man

No other man will scorn,

Where love will bless the earth

And peace its paths adorn

I dream a world where all

Will know sweet freedom's way,

Where greed no longer saps the soul

Nor avarice blights our day.

A world I dream where black or white,

Whatever race you be,

Will share the bounties of the earth

And every man is free,

Where wretchedness will hang its head

And joy, like a pearl,

Attends the needs of all mankind-

Of such I dream, my world!

-Langston Hughes

“I still have a dream, a dream deeply rooted in the American dream – one day this nation will rise up and live up to its creed, ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal.’”

- Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

dwmiv Mon, 01/18/2021 - 5:36pm
1/18/2021 News & Commentary - Korea

News & commentary by Dave Maxwell. Edited and published by Duncan Moore.

1. FAST THINKING: What we’re watching in North Korea

2. N. Korea's parliament rubber stamps new development plans

3. Moon urges Biden to learn from Trump's N. Korea diplomacy

4. South Korea caught in the middle as China, US ‘whales’ face off

5. Biden's North Korea challenge

6. WW3 fears: South Korea caught in brutal crossfire between China and US as tensions soar

7. Moon says S. Korea-U.S. exercise could be discussed with N. Korea if necessary

8. Joe Biden has a nuclear choice to make on North Korea

9. N. Korea convenes parliamentary meeting after party congress

10. Moon believes S. Korea will achieve faster herd immunity formation than other nations

11. New virus cases at almost 2-month low on fewer tests, infections slowdown

12. How Biden can navigate a new era in South Korean politics

13. Outgoing U.S. envoy meets P.M., expresses hope to play role in advancing alliance

14. Moon says it's too early to talk about pardoning Park Geun-hye, MB

15. N.Korea has new 2nd-in-command

16. Almost half of Kim Jong-Un's cabinet is replaced

17. Moon hopes stalled N.K. nuke diplomacy will pick up from Singapore Declaration

 

1. FAST THINKING: What we’re watching in North Korea

Atlantic Council · Markus Garlauskas · January 13, 2021

 

2. N. Korea's parliament rubber stamps new development plans

Associated Press · Kim Tong-Hyung · January 18, 2021

 

3. Moon urges Biden to learn from Trump's N. Korea diplomacy

Associated Press · Kim Tong-Hyung · January 18, 2021

So, is President Moon implying Trump's biggest mistake was NOT easing "crippling" sanctions? I would argue that is one of the most important things Trump did - to not make concessions and provide sanctions relief interurban for nothing substantive from North Korea.

Rather than give misguided advice to President Biden, I would offer that one of the fundamental problems we have in the alliance are the erroneous strategic assumptions under which the Moon administration is operating, namely that Kim Jong-Un shares Moon's vision of peace and reconciliation. All evidence points to this assumption being patently wrong.

The first thing the alliance must do is reevaluate the strategic assumptions about the nature and objectives of the Kim family regime and ensure they  are understood, accurate, and aligned between the ROK and US.

All evidence points to Kim Jong-Un not being willing to denuclearize. Any objective assessment of the 8th Party Congress and the October 10th 75th Anniversary of the KWP shows that Kim has no intention of denuclearization. Belief otherwise could very well lead to catastrophic strategic mistakes.

 

4. South Korea caught in the middle as China, US ‘whales’ face off

South China Morning Post · Eduardo Baptista · January 17, 2021

When whales wrestle, shrimp die.

 

5. Biden's North Korea challenge

Eurasia Review · Naoka Aoki · January 18, 2021

Biden cannot ignore north Korea, but he also cannot overreact to Kim's actions and rhetoric.

We should not sacrifice readiness and the security of the ROK/US alliance. Also, ROK/US CFC has sustained multi-echelon training. Although it has adjusted the scale, scope, intensity, and timing of training, it has not stopped training. To halt training would be the height of irresponsibility.

We should not be afraid of the North's "provocations" in response to training. Kim will conduct provocations when he thinks he can achieve strategic effects and gain an advantage. He does not conduct provocations simply in response to our exercises, though, of course, his rhetoric will blame the exercises. We should keep this in mind as we sit here today: the North is embarked on its Winter Training Cycle, which will bring the NKPA to the highest state of readiness by the end of March… the optimal time to attack the South.

 

6. WW3 fears: South Korea caught in brutal crossfire between China and US as tensions soar

Express · Steven Brown · January 17, 2021

Advice to South Korea if you find yourself in the kill zone (crossfire) of an ambush, move out of the kill zone. You are putting yourself in the middle. Trying to appease China for economic reasons while maintaining a security alliance with the US will likely not improve your economy or security. Stay out of the crossfire by not putting yourself in that position.

 

7. Moon says S. Korea-U.S. exercise could be discussed with N. Korea if necessary

Yonhap News Agency · 오석민 · January 18, 2021

This is a huge mistake. This is not the way to start off relations with the Biden administration. You do not stop training to appease North Korea (especially when it has not let up on its training and has not compiled with the provisions of the 2018 Comprehensive Military Agreement).

We have always notified the North of our training to ensure there is no misunderstanding. But combined military training cannot be a concession to the North or used as a bargaining chip.

We must realize why the North (rhetorically) "attacks' alliance exercises. Kim Jung-Un wants to weaken the alliance, to split it, and to make it untenable for US forces to remain on the peninsula. He knows full well the exercises are defensive in nature, but he exploits the exercises as part of his political warfare strategy to achieve his long-term objective to dominate the Korean peninsula.

 

8. Joe Biden has a nuclear choice to make on North Korea

National Interest · Eric Gomez · January 18, 2021

Yes, we have to deal with North Korea as it really is and not as we would wish it to be. Yes, it has nuclear weapons and has no intention of giving them up. But that does not mean we should accept it as a nuclear weapons state or allow it to achieve its objectives as a nuclear state.

 

9. N. Korea convenes parliamentary meeting after party congress

Yonhap News Agency · 이원주 · January 18, 2021

It is important for us to know the policies that it rubber stamps.

 

10. Moon believes S. Korea will achieve faster herd immunity formation than other nations

Yonhap News Agency ·장동우 · January 18, 2021

This does not make sense to me. What do public health experts say about this?

 

11. New virus cases at almost 2-month low on fewer tests, infections slowdown

Yonhap News Agency · 주경돈 · January 18, 2021

Fewer tests. Is that a useful metric?

 

12. How Biden can navigate a new era in South Korean politics

Diplomat · Brian Kim · January 15, 2021

All liberals are not the same. Korean and US liberals do not have their values and ideology completely aligned.

Two keywords here: "unprecedented power:"

 

13. Outgoing U.S. envoy meets P.M., expresses hope to play role in advancing alliance

Yonhap News Agency · 장동우 · January 18, 2021

Despite all the criticism of Trump policies, we have had a strong Korea team with some outstanding members for the past few years. I hope going forward they will play a role in Track 2 and Track 1.5 discussions and work.

 

14. Moon says it's too early to talk about pardoning Park Geun-hye, MB

Korea Joong Ang Daily · Ser Myo-Ja · January 18, 2021

Just do the right thing. They don't deserve to be in jail.

 

15. N.Korea has new 2nd-in-command

Chosun Ilbo · Kim Myong-Song · January 18, 2021

The worst job in North Korea is to be called KJU’s number 2. Few survive long in that "position."

 

16. Almost half of Kim Jong-un's cabinet is replaced

Korea Joong Ang Daily · Shim Kyu-Seok · January 18, 2021

The "Kimologists" have their work cut out for themselves updating the leadership charts for the regime and party. I want to know where those who have been replaced have gone.

 

17. Moon hopes stalled N.K. nuke diplomacy will pick up from Singapore Declaration

Yonhap News Agency · 장동우 · January 18, 2021

Singapore declaration:

North Korea Negotiating Strategy (post Panmunjom, Singapore, Pyongyang summits):

Key “agreement” = denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula

1. Change relationship declaration of the end of the war (end of hostile US policy - i.e., peace regime)

2. Sanctions relief (permanent removal)

3. Denuclearization of the South (end of alliance, removal of troops, end of nuclear umbrella over ROK and Japan)

4. Then negotiate dismantlement of the north’s and ICBM programs

In Short:

NK: change relationship, build trust, denuclearize

US: denuclearize, build trust, change relationship

 

I Dream A World

I dream a world where man

No other man will scorn,

Where love will bless the earth

And peace its paths adorn

I dream a world where all

Will know sweet freedom's way,

Where greed no longer saps the soul

Nor avarice blights our day.

A world I dream where black or white,

Whatever race you be,

Will share the bounties of the earth

And every man is free,

Where wretchedness will hang its head

And joy, like a pearl,

Attends the needs of all mankind-

Of such I dream, my world!

-Langston Hughes

“I still have a dream, a dream deeply rooted in the American dream – one day this nation will rise up and live up to its creed, ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal.’”

- Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

dwmiv Mon, 01/18/2021 - 4:48pm
01/17/2021 News & Commentry - National Security

News and Commentary by Dave Maxwell. Edited and Published by Riley Murray.

 

1. The latest on Biden's inauguration and security threats

2. Biden fills out State Department team with Obama veterans

3. Bumble removed its political filter after people used it to lure conservatives who were at the Capitol riot into sending incriminating evidence

4. 'I'm facing a prison sentence': US Capitol rioters plead with Trump for pardons

5. Chinese Survey Ship Caught 'Running Dark' Give Clues to Underwater Drone Operations

6. Attack on Capitol was the beginning of an American insurgency, counterterrorism experts warn

7. The U.S. Capitol Riot Was Years in the Making. Here's Why America Is So Divided

8. Philippine air force helicopter crash kills all seven aboard

9. The Hacker Who Archived Parler Explains How She Did It (and What Comes Next)

10. General McChrystal compares MAGA riot to the evolution of Al-Qaeda

11. Former DOD Head: The US Needs a New Plan to Beat China on AI

12. Off-duty police were part of the Capitol mob. Now police are turning in their own.

13. Seeing the CCP Clearly

14. Fringe right plots new attacks out of sight

15. Australia admits to committing war crimes in Afghanistan

16. An unusual mission in Afghanistan, and the troops who suffered to carry it out (Book Review)

17. The Georgia Dad Who Said That He Wanted to Kill Nancy Pelosi

18. QAnon reshaped Trump's party and radicalized believers. The Capitol siege may just be the start.

 

1. The latest on Biden's inauguration and security threats

https://www.cnn.com/politics/live-news/biden-inauguration-dc-capitol-news-01-16-21/index.html

If I were advising the domestic political opposition (or a foreign adversary working to conduct an indirect attack of the US) in the US (i.e. those who seek to undermine our political system through subversion in the misguided attempt to return to a bygone era of political life that really never existed) I would recommend the following:  Create a threat in the capitol that causes an overreaction by security forces in order to turn the population against the government. Conduct a comprehensive deception information campaign (one line of effort through "internet chatter") to support the intelligence analysis that there will be massive violence at the inauguration.  Force the government to implement draconian population and resources control measures to lock down the capitol as an authoritarian state would do.  Force the government to threaten or even attack civil liberties in the name of security.  Then on January 20th, do nothing.  Make sure there are no violent actions (which may be difficult because the chatter likely will inspire "true believers" in the great lie and they will to continue to act on their own to the "#stopthesteal").  If no violence occurs it will set the stage for a long-term psychological warfare and supervision campaign to undermine the new administration and accuse it of taking on fascist characteristics in its (unproven) pursuit of a socialist agenda. It will undermine the credibility of the law enforcement, intelligence, and security services

And if the domestic political opposition or foreign adversaries cannot control the outbreak of violence they will be able to adjust their campaign to still undermine the new administration by focusing on the likely violent response in order to further undermine the trust and support of the population.  This will harden the resolve of the general supporters of the political opposition against the new administration. 

There are only a number of things the government can do: deny access to sanctuary for the leaders and small group of agitators, deny access to resources, deny the ability to move, and separate the agitators from the general supporters of #stopthesteal (by exposing their lies and true intent).  It is the separation of the population (general supporters) from the agitators that is the most complex and difficult task.  It begins by not vilifying the general supporters and recognizing they have been duped by the agitators.  The problem is many of these supporters have become true believers who are easily manipulated by the agitators. This is a long term task and cannot be accomplished overnight because it requires rebuilding trust in the American political system and the US Constitution. It is imperative the government act in a Constitutionally defensible manner in every action it takes.  If the new administration acts in ways that are perceived as unconstitutional it will harden the resolve not only of agitators but of the general supporters as well.

I offer all of the above in the spirit of Sun Tzu, “What is of supreme importance is to attack the enemy's strategy."  We must first understand and then expose their strategy in order to effectively attack it and the attack must primarily be conducted in the information and political domains.

Lastly, I will say that as I view the photos and reports coming from our capitol, I am saddened and ashamed of what people are doing to harm our great federal democratic republic.

 

2. Biden fills out State Department team with Obama veterans

AP · by Matthew Lee · January 16, 2021

 

3. Bumble removed its political filter after people used it to lure conservatives who were at the Capitol riot into sending incriminating evidence

Business Insider · by Ashley Collman

Some things just make you go hmmm..... Social media will be the downfall for many of these people. Interesting way to "crowd source" intelligence and law enforcement activities.

 

4. 'I'm facing a prison sentence': US Capitol rioters plead with Trump for pardons

The Guardian · by Oliver Milman · January 16, 2021

Will there be pardons?

 

5. Chinese Survey Ship Caught 'Running Dark' Give Clues to Underwater Drone Operations

news.usni.org · by H. I. Sutton · January 16, 2021

Excerpts:

The interception comes after a Chinese made Sea Wing UUV was discovered in Indonesian waters in late December. It was the latest of at least four Sea Wing gilder UUVs discovered in the region. Gilders are commonly used to gather data about currents, acoustics and the maritime environment. They use forward momentum created by repeatedly sinking and then rising in a method called variable-buoyancy propulsion. Many countries operate underwater gliders. The main U.S. equivalent is the Slocum G3, which the US.. Navy has deployed as the LBS-G (Littoral Battlespace Sensing-Glider).

Whether Xiang Yang Hong 03's activities are directly related to submarine activity, other naval intelligence, or legitimate scientific research is difficult to prove but are raising question about Chinese intentions in the region.

"These discoveries in Indonesian waters suggest we should be paying a lot more attention to what the Chinese are doing and why," Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI) analyst Malcom Davis told Asia Times.

 

6. Attack on Capitol was the beginning of an American insurgency, counterterrorism experts warn

aol.com · by AOL Staff

Hyperbole or accurate analysis.  This requires deep reflection.

 

7. The U.S. Capitol Riot Was Years in the Making. Here's Why America Is So Divided

TIME – by Ian Bremmer

Excerpts:

Compared to countries in Europe where tech platforms face more severe government regulation and must take more responsibility for content posted, the U.S. has a particular problem given its inclination to go lighter on private sector regulation. But the U.S. government won't be able to sit on the sidelines much longer given recent developments-while plenty cheered at Twitter and Facebook's decision to de-platform Trump in the wake of the Capitol riot, it opens serious questions about who has the democratic right to limit others' speech. U.S. politicians will have to wade in lest they effectively cede that power to unelected tech CEOs, a recipe for a disaster of a whole other sort.

There are other contributing factors to today's U.S. political divisions, but for me, these three are the most structural, and the most crucial. Even more worrying, no matter what happens with recent impeachment efforts, all three of these trends are set to grow stronger over the near-term. Absent more earnest efforts across the political spectrum to deal with these issues-and make the political compromises necessary to truly address them-these are problems that will grow worse.

 

8. Philippine air force helicopter crash kills all seven aboard

Stars and Stripes – 16 January 2021

I am sorry to hear of this.  I knew some great AFP pilots. I have flown on AFP helicopters many times.  They were all Vietnam era Hueys and often we could still see the Budweiser beer cans that had been applied on the interior to patch up bullet holes.

 

9. The Hacker Who Archived Parler Explains How She Did It (and What Comes Next)

Vice – by Leland Nally

Nothing on the internet can (or should) be considered secure.

 

10. General McChrystal compares MAGA riot to the evolution of Al-Qaeda

Daily Mail · by Rachel Sharp For Dailymail.com · January 16, 2021

This is sure to stir the wrath of many communities.  Is his analysis valid?  Is this the way we should be describing threats in the US?

 

11. Former DOD Head: The US Needs a New Plan to Beat China on AI

Wired · by Nicholas Thompson

 

12. Off-duty police were part of the Capitol mob. Now police are turning in their own.

The Washington Post – Kimberly Kindy, Kim Bellware, and Mark Berman - January 16, 2021

 

13. Seeing the CCP Clearly

The New York Review of Books · by Perry Link

Excerpts:

Especially galling to Liu was the claim of Western intellectuals to be speaking, through Mao, for ordinary people-the downtrodden, the underdogs, "the masses." In fact, they were doing the very opposite: they were siding with the oppressors. In 1989, when the Soviet empire collapsed, the West heaved a sigh that "the cold war is over." Over? What about China, North Korea, Vietnam, Cuba? Why does the West not see some parts of the world?

US policy has not just overlooked dictatorship in China; it has aided the growth of CCP power. Within days of the Tiananmen massacre, despite international sanctions on Beijing, President Bush secretly sent emissaries to assure CCP leaders that he wanted to maintain good relations. While Congress was extracting its annual human rights concessions from Beijing in return for "most favored nation" trade terms in the early 1990s, President Clinton, under pressure from Wall Street, abruptly "de-linked" trade and human rights in 1994. US capital and technology (some of it purloined) began to drive a boom in Chinese manufacturing for export.

With US support, China joined the World Trade Organization in 2001 and secured billions in World Bank loans, helping its economy to take another leap. In 2005 Robert Zoellick, a US deputy secretary of state, gave a widely reported speech in which he said that the CCP might become a "responsible stakeholder" in the world system. To Chinese dissidents, the speech revealed more about American naiveté than about what could be expected of the CCP.

Unfortunately, Zoellick was not unusual among westerners. In capitals on both sides of the Atlantic, a faith grew that "they will come to be like us." At the spectacular Beijing Olympics in 2008, Joshua Ramo of the consulting firm Kissinger Associates, which was long a proponent of "engagement" with the CCP, predicted that China was "a nation about to put a match to the fuse of a rocket." He made no mention of the hundreds of thousands of ordinary people who had been forced from their homes to assure that the great Olympic salute to the CCP looked as perfect as possible. Barack Obama, whose image among Chinese dissidents was generally good, said publicly in 2015 that the CCP's antipoverty program was "one of the most remarkable achievements in human history." He did not acknowledge that the Great Leap agricultural disaster of 1959-1962, which thrust hundreds of millions of people into dire poverty (and killed at least 30 million), was a direct result of CCP policies as well as the most direct cause of the poverty that later needed to be alleviated.

 

14. Fringe right plots new attacks out of sight

Axios · by Sara Fischer, Kyle Daly

If they develop good OPSEC techniques and perfect their subversion skills we are going to face significant challenges. 

 

15. Australia admits to committing war crimes in Afghanistan

presstories.com · by Cory Weinberg · January 17, 2021

 

16.  An unusual mission in Afghanistan, and the troops who suffered to carry it out (Book Review)

The Washington Post – by Greg Jaffe - January 14, 2021

 

17. The Georgia Dad Who Said That He Wanted to Kill Nancy Pelosi

The New Yorker · by Charles Bethea · January 15, 2021

Troubling.  But perhaps provides some insights.

 

18.  QAnon reshaped Trump's party and radicalized believers. The Capitol siege may just be the start.

The Washington Post – By Drew Harwell, Isaac Stanley-Becker, Razzan Nakhlawi, and Craig Timberg - January 13, 2021

 

 

"We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America."

- The Preamble to the US Constitution

 

"The President may indeed in one respect resemble the commander of an army in peace, but in another and more essential sense he resembles the commander of a ship at sea. He must have a helm to grasp, a course to steer, a port to seek."

- Henry Brooks Adams

 

"The president we get is the country we get. With each new president the nation is conformed spiritually."

- E.L. Doctorow

 

Subversion: The undermining of the power and authority of an established system or institution.

As in: "the ruthless subversion of democracy"

Riley.C.Murray Sun, 01/17/2021 - 6:40pm
01/17/2021 News & Commentary - Korea

News and Commentary by Dave Maxwell. Edited and Published by Riley Murray.

 

1. A Message to the Incoming Biden Administration - Pay Attention to North Korea

2. Kim Jong Un Offers a Rare Sneak Peek at North Korea's Weapons Program

3. Key Results of The Eighth Party Congress in North Korea (Part 1 of 2)

4. North Korea Plans to Further Develop its Nuclear Strike Capabilities Despite Economic Constraints

5. North Korea's Newest Submarine-Launched Ballistic Missile, Same as the Old One?

6. When dealing with North Korea, human rights must take priority

7. North Korea's Missiles and Nuclear Weapons: Everything You Need to Know

8. South Koreans' Negative View of China is Nothing New, but is Getting Worse

9. Does North Korea's Kim Jong-un have a nuclear surprise for President Biden?

10. China 'inflamed' North Korea fury over border dispute as Kim gives nuclear green light

11. North Korea flaunts new weapons amid Washington, D.C., turmoil

12. Japan-Korea comfort women controversy re-erupts

13. New virus cases in 500s for 6th day; tougher curbs partially eased

14. S. Korea officially invited as guest nation to G-7 summit in Britain

15. Seoul's new envoy to Tokyo committed to "political" solution to historical conflicts

16. 'South Korea widens gap with North in military strength'

17. North Korea set for Supreme People's Assembly session following party congress

18. Experts split over NK's nuclear missile threat

19. S. Korea's economy anticipates synergy with 'Bidenomics'

20. U.S. author takes on Korean icon in 'King Sejong the Great'

 

1. A Message to the Incoming Biden Administration - Pay Attention to North Korea

hrnkinsider.org · by George Hutchinson

From my good friend George Hutchinson.  We must be concerned with the full range of threats posed by north Korea - direct and indirect.

 

2. Kim Jong Un Offers a Rare Sneak Peek at North Korea's Weapons Program

WSJ · by Timothy W. Martin

My comments below, among others.

 

3. Key Results of The Eighth Party Congress in North Korea (Part 1 of 2)

38north.org · by Ruediger Frank · January 15, 2021

Some analysis we overlook as we focus on security issues only (though with north Korea every issues a security issues.  Regarding state over market; politics over economy we should remember that it is the party over the state and everything else in north Korea.

Key points from Ruediger Frank:

1) The Congress took place at an unusual time, lasted longer and had more attendants than before.

2) Self-critical remarks were scaled back.

3) State over market, politics over economy: no signs of economic reform.

4) The focus is internal. Trade and tourism play only a minor role.

5) Metal and chemical industries identified as the key elements of economic development: a North Korean version of Park Chung-hee's Heavy and Chemical Industry Drive?

6) Agriculture: renewed emphasis on state distribution?

7) Afforestation got an extraordinarily high level of attention.

8) Cement production is at lower levels than in 1970.

9) Focus on rural areas and the local level: a North Korean version of the New Village Movement?

10) Development of mobile communications, cable broadcasting and commercial service.

11) Plans to create a nuclear power industry.

 

4. North Korea Plans to Further Develop its Nuclear Strike Capabilities Despite Economic Constraints

38north.org · by Olli Heinonen · January 15, 2021

This should be no surprise.  I think nuclear weapons are in the DNA of the Kim family regime.  It cannot be extricated as it is part of the very nature if not the soul of the regime.

One of the things we need to do is to continue to try to constrain growth of the nuclear program by limited resources to the regime.   But even if the growth is slow than anticipated it is still growing and there is no sign that the regime will ever give them up so we must proceed based on that fundamental assumption as well as the assumptions about the nature and objectives (near and long term) of the regime. 

Excerpts:

North Korea's nuclear plans, while they may be constrained by limited resources, are likely aimed at establishing a fait accompli in advance of possible denuclearization talks with the Biden administration and increasing the North's leverage in these negotiations. The debate in Pyongyang over its nuclear program will continue on Sunday, January 19, with the meeting of the Supreme People's Assembly, which traditionally blesses the decisions of the WPK Congress.

The new DPRK five-year economic plan should help to inform the new Biden administration's review of North Korea policy. Although the continued growth of the North's nuclear capabilities is a major concern, the slower-than-anticipated progress of their nuclear programs suggests there may be time to conduct a comprehensive review and to engage with regional parties on developing a common approach to the North Korean nuclear problem.

 

5. North Korea's Newest Submarine-Launched Ballistic Missile, Same as the Old One?

38north.org · by Ruediger Frank · January 15, 2021

My question is why did they only show us (what may only be a mock-up) of "new" SLBMs and not the new (which also may only have been a mock-up on October 10th) ICBM?

 

6. When dealing with North Korea, human rights must take priority

christianpost.com · by Arielle Del Turco · January 15, 2021

Human rights are a national security issue as well as a moral imperative.  And one key to human rights is getting information to the Korean people living in the north.

This conclusion is of course the ideal and certainly something we would like to see but it is unlikely to happen. Therefore, we must seek the solution to the Korea question to not only solve the human rights issue but the nuclear threat as well.

Conclusion: As an incoming U.S. presidential administration crafts its foreign policy priorities for the next four years, the North Korean religious freedom and human rights situation should occupy a prominent position. A transformed North Korea that poses no threat to the rest of the world ultimately requires a North Korean government that respects its people and allows them to live according to their consciences.

 

7.  North Korea's Missiles and Nuclear Weapons: Everything You Need to Know

https://www.wsj.com/articles/north-koreas-missiles-and-nuclear-weapons-everything-you-need-to-know-11610712018 - Timothy W. Martin – 15 January 2021

Some useful graphics at the link.

Excerpt:

What is President-elect Joe Biden's stance on North Korea?

Mr. Biden has advocated mixing pressure with what he calls principled diplomacy. He has declared an end to holding summits without preconditions, which he said amounts to embracing a thug. Mr. Biden said he would sit down with Mr. Kim only if Pyongyang were sincere and pledged to reduce its nuclear arsenal.

North Korea hasn't acknowledged Mr. Biden's election victory. This month Mr. Kim called the U.S. his country's biggest enemy.  North Korean state media last mentioned Mr. Biden by name in 2019, when it called him a "fool of low I.Q." and compared him to a rabid dog that "must be beaten to death."

 

8. South Koreans' Negative View of China is Nothing New, but is Getting Worse

pacforum.org – by Jaewoo Choo

The Moon administration must heed the views of the Korean people of the South.

Conclusion: Due to the foregoing mythical reasons, the Seoul government has taken a position opposite to its constituency, further contributing to anti-China sentiment. It is the government that is responsible for Korea's ill-perceived indulgences of China. The public is frustrated with the government's illusion of China as a cooperative partner, while the rise of China induces anxiety. So long as a vast majority (72%) support the continued alliance with the US, the government remains the culprit behind China's burgeoning unilateral behavior in the Northeast Asian region.

 

9. Does North Korea's Kim Jong-un have a nuclear surprise for President Biden?

scmp.com – by Park Chan-Kyong – 16 January 2021

Will he or won't he test something, and sooner or leter?

 

10.  China 'inflamed' North Korea fury over border dispute as Kim gives nuclear green light

Express · by Callum Hoare · January 15, 2021

I think many of us forget or are unaware of the Korea-China border dispute.

Excerpt:

But Beijing too could find itself in the line of North Korea's wrath in the future, surrounding a little-known border along the Baekdu Mountain (also known as Mount Paektu).

The active stratovolcano has a large crater called Heaven Lake, formed by the "Millennium" eruption of 946, which sent about 30 cubic miles of tephra into the sky in one of the largest and most violent eruptions in the last 5,000 years.

But international affairs expert J. Berkshire Miller warned sparks could also fly between the two nations in the future.

He wrote in the Diplomat: "Historical records point to Baekdu as the site where Korea's first kingdom, Gojoseon, was established.

 

11. North Korea flaunts new weapons amid Washington, D.C., turmoil

ABCNews.com 

Does Kim think US domestic turmoil provides him freedom of action and opportunity?

 

12.  Japan-Korea comfort women controversy re-erupts

asiatimes.com · by Andrew Salmon · January 15, 2021

But it never did (and may not ever) go away.

 

13. New virus cases in 500s for 6th day; tougher curbs partially eased

en.yna.co.kr · by 김은정 · January 17, 2021

Be careful of premature easing.

 

14.  S. Korea officially invited as guest nation to G-7 summit in Britain

en.yna.co.kr · by 장동우 · January 17, 2021

 

15. Seoul's new envoy to Tokyo committed to "political" solution to historical conflicts

en.yna.co.kr · by 송상호 · January 17, 2021

It is Moon and Suga who must be committed to political solutions.  Solutions require the highest level of national leadership from both countries. They must commit to national security and national prosperity as the priorities while managing the historical issues.

 

 

16. 'South Korea widens gap with North in military strength'

The Korea Times – by Yi Whan-woo - January 17, 2021

A hooah looking ROK soldier, though I think their current uniforms are better than this one in the photo which look more similar to the US Army style "pajamas" we were forced to wear for a few years.

A journalist asked me why the north's place declined given that it showed us new weapons systems, specifically the "new" ICBM and SLBMs.  My response: Military power consists of intent, capability, and training.  I believe the Global Firepower report assessment is based on what can be assessed as demonstrated capabilities. The new ICBM and SLBM have not been tested and we have seen no evidence of their deployment to operational units and no evidence of training in those units. Therefore, it would be a mistake to consider them as systems part of north Korea's global fire power.  The same is true for much of the modernized conventional military equipment we observed during the October 10th military parade during the 75th anniversary of the KWP.  The north demonstrates intent to modernize and field new equipment but there is no evidence that such equipment is operational, that it has been fielded, and that sufficient training with the new equipment has been conducted.  And the same goes for a willingness to develop a nuclear powered submarine which is one of the most technically complex systems to build and will likely be many years before one is fielded if they can even successfully build one.  And then before the capability will become viable they will need to build more than one - There is a saying it takes three to make one. To deploy one submarine you need one submarining and preparing to replace the one that is deployed And then a third one is recovering from deployment and then preparing to enter the training and preparation phase.  You will always have one sub recovering, one sub deployed, and one preparing to deploy.  The north is a long way from being able to field such a capability.

 

17. North Korea set for Supreme People's Assembly session following party congress

The Korea Times · January 17, 2021

Something else to keep us watching though many think this is another rubber stand event.  But we have to observe for indicators.

 

18.  Experts split over NK's nuclear missile threat

koreaherald.com · by Choi Si-young · January 17, 2021

While we cannot allow ourselves to overreact to these reports and demonstrations, we must also be wary of these developments.  At least the regime is showing us the intent to develop these weapons. 

 

19. S. Korea's economy anticipates synergy with 'Bidenomics'

koreaherald.com · by Bae Hyunjung · January 17, 2021

 

20. U.S. author takes on Korean icon in 'King Sejong the Great'

koreajoongangdaily.joins.com

King Sejong was an enlightened leader.

 

 

"We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America."

- The Preamble to the US Constitution

 

"The President may indeed in one respect resemble the commander of an army in peace, but in another and more essential sense he resembles the commander of a ship at sea. He must have a helm to grasp, a course to steer, a port to seek."

- Henry Brooks Adams

 

"The president we get is the country we get. With each new president the nation is conformed spiritually."

- E.L. Doctorow

 

Subversion: The undermining of the power and authority of an established system or institution.

As in: "the ruthless subversion of democracy"

Riley.C.Murray Sun, 01/17/2021 - 6:24pm
01/16/2021 News & Commentary - National Security

News and Commentary by Dave Maxwell. Edited and Published by Riley Murray.

 

1. Ensuring a Transparent, Thorough Investigation of COVID-19's Origin - United States Department of State

2. Mike Pompeo reveals intel implicating Wuhan lab in origins of COVID-19

3. American Thinker: Statement on Dominion Defamation

4. Analysis | A pillow salesman apparently has some ideas about declaring martial law

5. Trump's Indo-Pacific policy wasn't all wrong

6. War on Terror Teaches How to Fight Hate Groups

7. Race is on to commercialize fusion energy

8. Judge calls Capitol siege 'violent insurrection,' orders man who wore horns held

9.  From Counterterrorism to Irregular Warfare: What Does That Mean?

10. NSA Appoints Rob Joyce as Cyber Director

11. As Trump Clashes With Big Tech, China's Censored Internet Takes His Side

12. FAA Approves First Fully Automated Commercial Drone Flights

13. Economic and Diplomatic Power is not a Substitute for Military Strength

 

1. Ensuring a Transparent, Thorough Investigation of COVID-19's Origin - United States Department of State

state.gov · by Michael R. Pompeo, Secretary of State

 

2. Mike Pompeo reveals intel implicating Wuhan lab in origins of COVID-19

Daily Mail · by Keith Griffith · January 16, 2021

The Daily Mail's analysis of SECSTATE's statement released last evening.

 

3. American Thinker: Statement on Dominion Defamation

americanthinker.com

An act of contrition?

 

4. Analysis | A pillow salesman apparently has some ideas about declaring martial law

The Washington Post · January 15, 2021

Some things you just cannot make up.  The "MyPillow guy?"  Perhaps there is something to this.  I seem to do my best strategic thinking when my head is on the pillow (I just can never recall it when I wake up).  We have the "kitchen cabinet, " Lendell must be a member of the "bedroom cabinet."

 

5. Trump's Indo-Pacific policy wasn't all wrong

asiatimes.com · by Grant Newsham · January 15, 2021

That foreign policy stuff isn't easy. 

Excerpts:

As for criticism that China is still a serious threat as the Trump administration ends, one can hardly blame Trump for the fact that Beijing hasn't apologized and promised to behave better. He at least made the PRC leadership more uncomfortable than had any of his predecessors in the last 40 years.

At the end of the day, no president or administration to date deserves a perfect score when it comes to Indo-Pacific affairs. And they've all done perplexing things.

But a president and his foreign policy staff are the men and women in the ring trying to defend US and partner interests - and indeed the very notion of consensual government, individual liberty, human rights and the so-called rules-based order.

It isn't easy.

Trump and his staff are handing off to Joseph Biden an Indo-Pacific that is better off than it was in 2017 - although by no means out of the woods. Let's hope the new team reads the Indo-Pacific Strategic Framework and uses it as a reference.

Regardless, they will be the ones in the ring, and one hopes they succeed.

 

6. War on Terror Teaches How to Fight Hate Groups

Bloomberg · by James Stavridis · January 15, 2021

I remember the controversy when COIN theory was being applied in Springfield, Mass by policemen who had served in Afghanistan.  (and of course, some of COIN theory was based on the community policing techniques - there is some real yin-yang going on among these theories).  But this proposal will certainly raise concerns and I am sure it will generate some hate mail.  Of course, intelligence sharing and. A mix of hard and soft power (appropriate for the conditions and situations) may also be called fundamental and common sense.

 

7. Race is on to commercialize fusion energy

asiatimes.com · by Jonathan Tennenbaum · January 16, 2021

Will this be a game changer?

 

8. Judge calls Capitol siege 'violent insurrection,' orders man who wore horns held

Reuters · by Brad Heath, Sarah N. Lynch, Jan Wolfe · January 16, 2021

Some good news, perhaps.

 

9. From Counterterrorism to Irregular Warfare: What Does That Mean? 

news.clearancejobs.com · by Jason Criss Howk · January 15, 2021

I have noticed that some CT organizations are being renamed as IW organizations in the Pentagon.  Is a name change sufficient?

Excerpts:

Sir Graeme of the UK Army often told me that the way to overcome an irregular threat, like an insurgency, is to use the principle of mass. While mass is often thought of as pushing thousands of soldiers towards one objective, he meant smart-massing. He meant use every tool at a governments disposal to overwhelm the irregular threat. Irregular threats are not always resilient and seldom robust. They are not often sophisticated enough to withstand an attack from 12 directions at once. By pulling back our focus on CT so we can use all the other tools of irregular warfare, we can mass all our government's power and overwhelm China, Russia, and Iran.

Our great power nation enemies would like nothing more than to see us continue to fight them in a hap-hazard way, while we keep our foot on the gas to chase a few terrorists around the globe. Its time to pump the brakes a bit and take a fresh look at the tools in the shed. We can start using a rake to move leaves, or continue to swing at them with a hammer until we pass out. There is no need to panic about the shift from CT to IW. Many a grandfather has told their grandkids to use the correct tool for the job, and that is the advice we should be focusing on at the moment. Let's enhance our cyber and information operations, security partnership building, and counter-network/threat skills; and use all of the other oft-forgotten organizations to make us safer by empowering other nation's populations to better their own states.

 

10. NSA Appoints Rob Joyce as Cyber Director

darkreading.com

National Security Agency.  Not to be confused with the National Security Advisor.

 

11. As Trump Clashes With Big Tech, China's Censored Internet Takes His Side

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/01/15/business/trump-china-censorship.html - by Li Yuan

 

12. America's troubles ahead in the Asia-Pacific

lowyinstitute.org · by Hadrien T. Saperstein

"The inability to project power beyond militarised means..."   We should ponder this.

Excerpts:

Consequently, in the coming years, the US government will heedlessly continue the process of militarising its foreign policy in an attempt to mitigate the diplomatic failure to reverse the slow-moving strategic shift that will occur in the Asia-Pacific region.

The inability to project power beyond militarised means, elicited by intermittent domestic crises, will make allies and partners far less confident in the depth and durability of the US commitment to the Asia-Pacific region. The likely result will be that the United States is once again be long on promises, but short on delivery.

 

12. FAA Approves First Fully Automated Commercial Drone Flights

WSJ · by Andy Pasztor and Katy Stech Ferek

American Robotics granted permission to operate drones without hands-on piloting.

 

13. Economic and Diplomatic Power is not a Substitute for Military Strength

realcleardefense.com · by Seth Cropsey and Harry Halem

Conclusion: The Biden administration's emphasis on multilateralism in dealing with China should be welcomed. America must stand but cannot stand alone. Nevertheless, this nation must take care. Today, as in any other era, blood remains the price of power and military force its most valuable currency. America's adversaries understand this fact. Not recognizing it, therefore, is an invitation to violence. Forming a broad-based multilateral coalition to counter Beijing's economic/diplomatic expansion should not curtail the U.S. military's need to equal and surpass China's continuing arms buildup.

 

 

"Truth does not reside in exact recording of every detail.  It never has.  Instead, it resides in myth -- generalizing myths that direct attention to what is common amid diversity by neglecting trivial differences of detail."  

- Historian William McNeill wrote in a NYT op-ed in 1981

 

"It's limited war for Americans, and total war for those fighting Americans. The United States has more power; its foes have more willpower." 

- Dominic Tierney

  

"There's a sociologist who spent a lot of time [in Afghanistan] who asked Americans to define what corruption is. They would say something like, 'when you give your cousin a job.'  Then he went to Afghanistan and asked them to define corruption. They said, 'that's when you have a job to give and you don't give it to your cousin.'"

- David Brooks, May 14, 2013 public lecture at CSIS

Riley.C.Murray Sat, 01/16/2021 - 12:49pm
01/16/2021 News & Commentary - Korea

News and Commentary by Dave Maxwell. Edited and Published by Riley Murray.

 

1. Opinion | Why North Korea could become one of Biden's biggest challenges

2. North Korean Leader's Sister Retains Power Despite Formal 'Demotion'

3. N.Korea Shows off New Submarine-Launched Missile at Military Parade

4. N. Korea holds military parade, showcases new SLBM

5. Military parade pressures Biden to take North Korea seriously

6. Diplomats of S. Korea, Japan hold video talks amid tensions on wartime sexual slavery ruling

7. S. Korea extends current social distancing level for 2 weeks, eases restrictions on cafes, gyms

8. Shameful political legacy

 

1. Opinion | Why North Korea could become one of Biden's biggest challenges

The Washington Post · by Victor Cha · January 15, 2021

I am going to beat this horse: deterrence, defense, denuclearization, solving the Korea question (unification), using a superior form of political warfare based on a rock-solid ROK/US alliance and realistic assumptions of the nature of the Kim family regime and its strategy and objectives.

I am glad to read Dr. Cha discussing the potential for instability in north Korea.

Again, I offer this from Robert Kaplan who interviewed Robert Collins in 2006 and describes the 7 phases of north Korean collapse.

When North Korea Falls
The furor over Kim Jong Il's missile tests and nuclear brinksmanship obscures the real threat: the prospect of North Korea's catastrophic collapse. How the regime ends could determine the balance of power in Asia for decades. The likely winner? China
ROBERT D. KAPLAN
OCTOBER 2006 ISSUE

https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2006/10/when-north-korea-falls/305228/

Here is a link to my 1996 Monograph following the Arduous March of the great famine of 1994-1996 

"The Catastrophic Collapse of North Korea: Implications for the U.S. Military" 

https://apps.dtic.mil/dtic/tr/fulltext/u2/a314274.pdf 

My thoughts on supporting Korean unification and resistance in north Korea are here. 

Should the United States Support Korean Unification and If So, How? 

International Journal of Korean Studies ·Vol. XVIII, No. 1  

http://icks.org/n/data/ijks/1482467285_add_file_7.pdf  

Unification Options and Scenarios: Assisting A Resistance 

International Journal of Korean Unification Studies 

Vol. 24, No. 2, 2015, 127-152 

https://www.kinu.or.kr/pyxis-api/1/digital-files/d3f8fb63-4f8c-49c9-a4fa-901d3120bd5a  

But yes, it is not just KJU's nuclear weapons.  Here are my "Big 5"

1. War - must deter, and if attacked defend, fight, and defeat the nKPA.

2. Regime Collapse - must prepare for the real possibility and understand it could lead to war and both war and regime collapse could result in resistance within the north.

3. Human Rights and Crimes Against Humanity - (gulags, external forced labor, etc) must focus on as it is a threat to the Kim Family Regime and undermines domestic legitimacy - it is a moral imperative and a national security issue. KJU denies human rights to remain in power.

4. Asymmetric threats (provocations, proliferation, nuclear program, missiles, cyber, and SOF) subversion of the ROK, and global illicit activities.

5. Unification - the biggest challenge and the solution.

We should never forget that north Korea is master of denial and deception in all that it does from military operations to strategy to diplomatic negotiations.

There are my five strategic questions about north Korea:

1.  What do we want to achieve in Korea?

2. What is the acceptable durable political arrangement that will protect, serve, and advance US and ROK/US Alliance interests on the Korean Peninsula and in Northeast Asia?

3. Who does Kim fear more: The US or the Korean people in the north? (Note it is the Korean people armed with information knowledge of life in South Korea)

4. Do we believe that Kim Jong-un has abandoned the seven decades old strategy of subversion, coercion-extortion (blackmail diplomacy), and use of force to achieve unification dominated by the Guerrilla Dynasty and Gulag State in order to ensure the survival of the mafia like crime family cult known as Kim family regime?

5. In support of that strategy do we believe that Kim Jong-un has abandoned the objective to split the ROK/US Alliance and get US forces off the peninsula?  Has KJU given up his divide to conquer strategy - divide the alliance to conquer the ROK?

The answers to these questions should guide us to the strategy to solve the "Korea question" (para 60 of the Armistice) and lead to the only acceptable durable political arrangement: A secure, stable, economically vibrant, non-nuclear Korean peninsula unified under a liberal constitutional form of government with respect for individual liberty, the rule of law, and human rights, determined by the Korean people.  In short, a United Republic of Korea (UROK)

The root of all problems in Korea is the existence of the mafia- like crime family cult known as the Kim family regime that has the objective of dominating the Korean Peninsula under the rule of the Guerrilla Dynasty and Gulag State. 

 

2. North Korean Leader's Sister Retains Power Despite Formal 'Demotion'

rfa.org

Not mentioned is that she appears to still retain her position in the Organization and Guidance Department which is the most important organization directly supporting Kim Jong-un, the regime, and the party.  And of course, trusting her with the propaganda and Agitation Department responsible for glorifying KJU and controlling the regime narrative is also another indicator of her importance and power.

 

3. N.Korea Shows off New Submarine-Launched Missile at Military Parade

english.chosun.com – 16 January 2021

Never tested, not known to be operational, and does it have a capable submarine (and at least three to make one) to make this availability capability?  Right now, I think this is a blackmail diplomacy tool and is more about trying to raise tensions to extract/extort political and economic concessions.  It may be a "bargaining chip" at negotiations.  They are trying to generate fear of the capability so we will provide concessions to stop its fielding.  And the sad irony could be they would give up a "capability" that was nowhere near ready to be fielded and perhaps they never even had any intention of fielding it. They will give up the "new" missile and continue to develop and field the already tested Pukguksong-3.  

That said, never say never.  Maybe they have developed a more advanced missile that is ready to be tested.  We have underestimated the regime and the nKPA before.

 

4. N. Korea holds military parade, showcases new SLBM

en.yna.co.kr · by 이원주 · January 15, 2021

Kim Jong-un is rocking that leather coat of fur hat.

 

5. Military parade pressures Biden to take North Korea seriously

The Korea Times · January 15, 2021

I am pretty confident the Biden administration takes north Korea seriously. That said it does not mean that it will act in the desperate way that KJU desires.  Biden's national security team will ensure there is not an overreaction to KJU 's provocation while at the same time demonstrating strategic reassurance and strategic resolve. 

 

6. Diplomats of S. Korea, Japan hold video talks amid tensions on wartime sexual slavery ruling

en.yna.co.kr · by 송상호 · January 15, 2021

There is no easy answer to this problem except decisive leadership by Moon and Suga (but that will be hard).

 

7. S. Korea extends current social distancing level for 2 weeks, eases restrictions on cafes, gyms

en.yna.co.kr · by 이해아 · January 16, 2021

The pendulum is swinging.

 

8. Shameful political legacy

The Korea Times – by Park Moo-jong - January 14, 2021

A useful survey of the Korean presidents and comparisons to some US presidents.

 

 

"Truth does not reside in exact recording of every detail.  It never has.  Instead, it resides in myth -- generalizing myths that direct attention to what is common amid diversity by neglecting trivial differences of detail."  

- Historian William McNeill wrote in a NYT op-ed in 1981

 

"It's limited war for Americans, and total war for those fighting Americans. The United States has more power; its foes have more willpower." 

- Dominic Tierney

  

"There's a sociologist who spent a lot of time [in Afghanistan] who asked Americans to define what corruption is. They would say something like, 'when you give your cousin a job.'  Then he went to Afghanistan and asked them to define corruption. They said, 'that's when you have a job to give and you don't give it to your cousin.'"

- David Brooks, May 14, 2013 public lecture at CSIS

Riley.C.Murray Sat, 01/16/2021 - 12:38pm