We are a few days away from the latest deadline in the Iran-U.S. nuclear talks. Much of the case on whether we need a deal depends on this question: what does the Middle East look like if Tehran and Washington don’t come to an accord? Is war between the United States and Iran inevitable? If U.S. hawks succeed in scuttling a nuclear deal, then those same hawks will shift, in short order, to insisting on war as the only remedy.
Author Page for Robert Farley
I’ll be in Ottawa on Thursday to talk about military diffusion and intellectual property:
What do intellectual property law, industrial espionage, and cyber-warfare have to do with one another?
Industrial espionage is, by definition, a violation of most existing schemes of intellectual property law. In the 19th and 20th centuries, governments actively practiced industrial espionage, dispatching agents to foreign countries in order to steal secrets and bring them back to domestic producers. Despite the potential for glamour and drama, the fruits of industrial espionage, especially in the defense sector, are generally thought to have been limited.
Here’s the info on the talk, which I’m sure will be of great interest to the Ottawa’s vast community of LGM readers!
A bit more on the Cooperative Strategy (I don’t think that the title correctly captures the argument:
The Cooperative Strategy is effectively a strategy for defending the liberal international economic order. The 2015 version (and its 2007 predecessor) is at its best when it envisions the operational employment of the U.S. maritime services in pursuit of basic oceanic maintenance. Most notably, this includes fighting against people best characterized as “enemies of all mankind” (including pirates, thieves, and terrorists), and dealing with humanitarian disasters.
The document is less effective at characterizing great power conflict in the maritime space. Even when two countries both allow the possibility of positive sum cooperation at sea, conflict can arise over the precise distribution of spoils, as well as concerns over vulnerability. And some countries do not place a high value on the reliability of maritime security.
Why do we need a new strategy? Many critics of the first strategy challenged its focus on collaboration, especially with potential competitors such as China and the Russia. The first strategy hedged on competitors, implicitly suggesting that deterrence and the development of a network of professional relationships could help soften the edges of political disputes. The first CS-21 notably failed to establish much guidance for procurement, fleet constitution, or force structure, which some argued left the service ill-prepared to fight budgetary wars in Washington.
Absolutely fascinating long read on one of the first North Korean MiG pilots to defect:
But before they showed him off to reporters, they decided he needed some coaching. On one especially touchy subject, they coached him to lie. A well-dressed American in civilian clothes (whose name No never heard) asked if he had ever seen American fighter jets in Chinese airspace. Of course, No replied, he had seen many American Sabres shoot down MiGs on takeoff and landing from Manchurian airfields. The well-dressed man said that if a reporter asked about these incursions in Manchuria, No must say he had seen nothing.
For his part, Ike disliked defectors, wanted to send the MiG back to the USSR, and didn’t want to pay the $100000 that the pilot was owed.
We live in a world where Mickey Kaus quits his job because Tucker Carlson spikes a column arguing that Fox News is insufficiently hard core on immigration and amnesty:
“It’s pretty simple,” Kaus said in an interview, “I wrote a piece attacking Fox for not being the opposition on immigration and amnesty — for filling up the airwaves with reports on ISIS and terrorism, and not fulfilling their responsibility of being the opposition on amnesty and immigration…. I posted it at 6:30 in the morning. When I got up, Tucker had taken it down. He said, ‘We can’t trash Fox on the site. I work there.'”
Mickey rejected the Democratic Party [ed- don’t let the door hit you in the ass on the way out, Mickey! Amirite?] because it was too far to the left on immigration; he’s now rejecting the Republican Party because it’s too far to the left on immigration. The true visionary always wages a lonely struggle…
LGM Tourney Challenge brackets are now ready.
Group: Lawyers, Guns and Money
My latest at the Diplomat works through the implications of China’s efforts to build a modern IP bureaucracy:
Can China create an intellectual property system robust enough to support domestic technological innovation (on both the military and civilian side) while still maintaining its casual attitude toward the theft of foreign technology? The answer is almost certainly no.
In honor of the release of Grounded: The Case for Abolishing the United States Air Force in paperback, Real Clear Defense has published an excerpt:
Air force independence was controversial from the start. The appendix of a British Air Ministry memorandum of June 1921, entitled “Some Arguments for and against a Separate Air Force,” detailed seven arguments against independence. In this section, I boil these arguments down to five rationales for air force independence. Some of these rationales speak directly to the idea of an independent air force, while others justify bureaucratic division in a more general sense.