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Category: Robert Farley

Mobile Site Down

[ 17 ] April 16, 2015 |

All,

Our mobile site is down; we are working to resolve the problem. Thank you for your patience.

Best,

Management

UPDATE: Fixed, thanks to the fantastic folks at SunAnt.

On Reimbursements…

[ 42 ] April 15, 2015 |

All you out there in academialand, I have a question. Does your institution reimburse for childcare costs associated with “normal” extra-curricular activities? I’m thinking of the need to hire a babysitter for a candidate dinner, or reception, or staff retreat, or other events that are part of the regular course of events during the semester? Please let me know in comments, or by e-mail (contact info in far right sidebar).

On Revisionism

[ 2 ] April 14, 2015 |

My latest at the Diplomat takes a look at Chinese “revisionism”:

Competition within a given system is still competition, and the United States should worry about increases in Chinese military capabilities. Similarly, states invested in the South and East China Sea disputes should view the growth of Chinese power and assertiveness with wariness. But we should also take care not to overstate the degree to which China is challenging the global international order. We have plenty of examples from the 20th century of what revisionist states really look like.

I also have a quote in Peter Ford’s article on the same subject.

 

Our Struggle to Build a Better World Will Endure Setbacks

[ 2 ] April 14, 2015 |
Endoftrailx.jpg

“Endoftrailx” by Veever – Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

With great power comes great responsibility. Consequently, it is with great sadness that I report that the LGM Tournament Challenge was, in fact, won by some asshole who picked Duke.

RANK BRACKET, OWNER R64 R32 S16 E8 F4 NCG CHAMPION PPR TOTAL PCT
1 250 220 240 240 160 320 Duke 0 1430 98.7
2 220 220 200 240 160 320 Duke 0 1360 97.5
3* 260 200 160 240 160 320 Duke 0 1340 97.1
3* 240 180 200 240 160 320 Duke 0 1340 97.1
3* 240 180 200 240 160 320 Duke 0 1340 97.1
6 240 180 200 160 160 320 Duke 0 1260 94.5
7 270 180 200 240 320 0 Wisconsin 0 1210 92.5
8* 230 260 280 240 160 0 Kentucky 0 1170 90.8
8* 250 240 280 240 160 0 Kentucky 0 1170 90.8
10* 250 180 160 240 320 0 Wisconsin 0 1150 89.9
10* 210 180 120 160 160 320 Duke 0 1150 89.9

 

TNDevilFin13, a name which leaves open the grim possibility that “David” might not only be a Duke fan, but also hail from Tennessee, should feel free to contact me (e-mail address on the far right sidebar) with regard to prize information.

Monday Links

[ 20 ] April 13, 2015 |


For your reading pleasure…

Foreign Entanglements: Airpower Geekery

[ 1 ] April 13, 2015 |

On this week’s episode of Foreign Entanglements, Brian Laslie (author of The Air Force Way of War) talk airpower stuff:

The Bridge to the New Life You’ve Been Waiting For

[ 42 ] April 10, 2015 |

Washington, there is nothing that in not awesome about this idea:

Washington State just received federal funds to study a totally unique toll bridge concept, one made out of decommissioned US Navy Super Carriers. The bridge would consist of two or three carriers and would link Bremerton and Port Orchard, Washington, spanning the Sinclair Inlet.


If I still lived in the area, I’d drive over this bridge some large, even number of times per day. Let’s make it happen, Washington.

Appomattox

[ 69 ] April 9, 2015 |
Lee Surrenders to Grant at Appomattox.jpg

“Lee Surrenders to Grant at Appomattox” by The Major & Knapp Eng. Mfg. & Lith. Co. 71 Broadway – Library of Congress. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.

150 years ago today, Robert E. Lee surrendered what was left of the Army of Northern Virginia to Ulysses S. Grant, who had on hand the Army of the Potomac and the Army of the James. The arc of history bent a little more towards justice that afternoon.

I felt like anything rather than rejoicing at the downfall of a foe who had fought so long and valiantly, and had suffered so much for a cause, though that cause was, I believe, one of the worst for which a people ever fought, and one for which there was the least excuse.

The Country Less Taken…

[ 26 ] April 9, 2015 |

AsadBabil-Dug-in.jpg

“AsadBabil-Dug-in” by unknown serviceman (US Army) – Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.

My latest at the National Interest takes a look at how the war and politics might have played out if Saddam Hussein had decided to follow up the invasion of Kuwait with an attack on Saudi Arabia in August, 1990:

But at the time, many in the United States worried that Saddam Hussein would order his army south, into Saudi Arabia. And in retrospect, giving the United States the time to mobilize a huge army in Saudi Arabia looks like something of a blunder. Would Saddam have had a better chance if he had gambled for higher stakes at the start, and ordered his forces to invade Saudi Arabia?

Retaliation

[ 19 ] April 7, 2015 |
WuZhen-5 under the wing of an aircraft carrier - 2.jpg

“WuZhen-5 under the wing of an aircraft carrier – 2″ by Flavio Mucia (AMB Brescia) – http://www.flickr.com/photos/ambbrescia/5943710801. Licensed under CC BY 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

 

My latest at the Diplomat takes a look at the Obama administration’s executive order on retaliation against private Chinese actors:

But the Obama administration may be willing to take the risk of a hard stance on Chinese cyber-espionage. Industrial espionage isn’t the only, or even the most important, way for China to get technology from U.S. companies.  Ever since China began attracting more FDI, Chinese companies have focused on the potential for technology transfer, which many Western firms have been happy to oblige. And despite the tremendous advances that the Chinese tech sector has made, technology transfers still flow much more heavily from the United States to China than the other way around.

 

Dog Sniffs Man

[ 138 ] April 6, 2015 |

Falkland Islands topographic map-enI’m not sure that I’m capable of formulating a theory about why this should be embarrassing to the British government:

Documents released by the American whistle-blower Edward Snowden claim that Britain spied for several years on the Argentine government.

According to reports in the Argentine media, Britain was concerned that Argentina could launch another attempt to reclaim the Falkland Islands.

The two nations fought a war over the islands in 1982.

Last month the British government announced it was upgrading its military presence on the islands.

Mr Snowden says British agents were actively spying on Argentina between 2006 and 2011.

The former CIA worker, who now lives in Russia, has previously leaked sensitive information about US surveillance programmes.

I’m also struggling with the release strategy of Snowden and his handlers.  Do they think that this is embarrassing to the British?  Is the intent simply to punish the British government? It seems that we’ve moved some distance from the original purpose of uncovering wrong-doing on the part of US and British intelligence services…

Deal?

[ 118 ] April 2, 2015 |

From my twitter feed, it seems that all of the people who should be hating the Iran deal are hating it, and all of the people who are actually interested in some kind of accommodation seem pleased. A few very vague thoughts:

  • Charles Duelfer thinks that this deal is no more likely to get rid of Iran’s nuclear program than the 1990s regime was to get rid of Saddam’s WMD. Seriously.
  • No agreement was going to remove or fundamentally change the nature of the Tehran government in the short term. Complaints along these lines amount to pissing in the wind.
  • Yes, Scott Walker has already said something stupid. Didn’t take long! The broader story is that any hope that the neocon grip on GOP foreign policy would loosen appears to be gone; the cranks remain firmly in control.
  • Iranian neocons have been as bitterly opposed to this negotiation as their American counterparts. The Iranian government will undoubtedly overspin the results in order to placate them.
  • Iran may cheat, but the question (as was the case with the Syrian chemical weapons agreement) is less “Does Iran comply 100%?” and more “Can we ensure a better outcome without a deal?” The answer, as was the case with Syria, is almost certainly no.
  • If you’re really, genuinely worried about Iranian influence in the region, the real threat is that Iran will abandon its proto-program completely and concentrate on enhancing its conventional and unconventional warfare capabilities.  In my view, nukes have been more of a distraction for Tehran than a potential asset.  But then Israel and Saudi Arabia already hold overwhelming conventional superiority over Iran, so projections of Iranian “hegemony” are so much nonsense in anything less than a 50 year timeframe.
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