"...do solemnly swear that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic..."

"For the good of the Air Force, for the good of the armed services and for the good of our country, I urge you to reject convention and careerism..."
- Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, Maxwell AFB, April 21, 2008

"You will need to challenge conventional wisdom and call things like you see them to subordinates and superiors alike."
- Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, United States Air Force Academy, March 4, 2011

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Read, Think, Write...Even Blog

Interesting speech given by Admiral James G. Stavridis about the need for officers to read, think, and write in order to out-brain our enemies. The admiral says that we can no longer count on our superior values or resources to win wars, we have to out think them. And to do that, officers need to start reading, thinking, and writing more - even though there may be career risk in doing so.

Next, let me share some thoughts about writing. Because after you read, and think, I would argue you must write. Writing is easy for some and hard for others, but it is essential in communicating what we have learned, as well as allowing others to challenge our views and thus make them stronger. You will write plenty here for the faculty. But I would strongly encourage you to set a goal of publishing an article somewhere as a result of the work you have done here.

Share your ideas in print—a scholarly journal, a military magazine, a literary journal, or even a blog post. Get out there with your ideas. Nail your whispers to the wall. Conclude the trilogy of read, think, and write—and try to publish. Is there "career risk" in publishing? I suppose. It hasn't hurt me too badly over the years. What matters more is testing your ideas on the field of intellectual battle, so to speak.

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