International Law: A Primer for Military Readers
International law is a topic which confounds most lawyers, let alone members of the general public or military personnel. Despite so much of it having been incorporated into the US Army’s DNA through the law of land warfare, the foundational premise of international law is so poorly understood that it tends to fall into the category of something soldiers have to learn about and comply with, but none really understand.
Working With Civvies – the Integrated Workplace
There are so many public servants working for Defence that it is important to know how to work with them.
‘Department of Defence analysis, produced last year and seen by The Mandarin, raises concerns that cultural differences between navy, army, air force and Defence public service can be a structural source of workplace bullying, mistreatment of women and other unacceptable behaviour.’
Hard Power is a Reality – NATO Commander's Observations on Ukraine
An article introducing comments made by GEN Chris Cavoli, SACEUR and COM USEUCOM, on NATO and the War in Ukraine as well as his personal observations on implications as a military professional.
Can Australians fight?
A change in the character of war is the importance of pre-conflict, political warfare to weaken adversaries and undermine their will to fight. Meanwhile, recent wars between states reinforced the enduring nature of protracted, conventional war to avoid existential threats. This essay asks if Australia has the national understanding to counter the impact of political warfare and the commensurate will to endure a protracted war in the Indo-Pacific.
Forget the 4 Cs, Use Motivation as the Cornerstone for Successful Learning in the ADF
Within the Australian Defence Force (ADF), the four C’s – critical thinking, collaboration, creativity, and communication – are viewed as the cornerstone for successful learning. However, education philosophers and theorists – from the Dewey era to more a contemporary 21st Century (Pratt et. al 2022) – have all agreed that for successful learning to occur, the fundamental pillar of motivation needs to be the foundation from which all other educational constructs spring forth.
Climate and Australia’s National Security
Climate change matters to Defence and has a direct effect on warfighting. Inaction threatens to undermine Defence’s contribution to Pacific Step-Up initiatives and puts us at a competitive disadvantage in developing regional influence and power projection.
Cementing Iran into a Russo-Chinese Coalition is Strategic Folly
Bringing Iran in from the cold would not only undercut a potential axis with China and Russia, it would allow the US to concentrate on its main game. Washington’s encouragement of a major rapprochement  between Israel and Saudi Arabia is intended to simplify the US’s security dilemmas in the region, including as a counter-balance to an increasingly assertive Iran.
Enter, the Contemporary Australian Warrant Officer
The specialist skills of Warrant Officers have traditionally made them indispensable across the Services, but is this rank and role in a state of emergence? Could there be even more value in this cohort as modern conflicts emerge in brand new domains?
Online Learning: No Going Back
Having discovered the benefits of online learning when the pandemic gave us no choice, we should embrace it as a valuable addition to our education tools.
Counterpropaganda is Not a Dirty Word
Democracies need to shed the ethical baggage associated with counterpropaganda and harness the integrity of their institutions to engage in positive information offensives in a hyper connected age.
The US’s troop withdrawal from Afghanistan in the summer of 2021 remoulded the global geopolitical terrain in ways the strategic punditry is still grappling with. The international media was awash with the scenes of the mujahideen confidently posing for the cameras as they occupied the complexes of Kandahar, peering straight into the West’s bone-weary democratic soul.
Privatisation and the Pitfalls of ADF Expansion
If the ADF is to retain its best people as well as drive recruitment, it needs to match the attractions of private enterprise and not submit to an erosion of its core purpose.
Information – the Missing Member of the Military Power Quartet - Part Two
This is part two of Information - the Missing Member of the Military Power Quartet. In this part the author examines each member of the Military Power Quartet and the effects the use, or misuse, that each element has had against the backdrop of the Ukranian conflict.