News: Naval War College confers with Irregular Warfare Experts
NEWPORT, R.I. -- More than 50 experts on irregular warfare joined together with the U.S. Naval War College’s (NWC) Center for Irregular Warfare and Armed Groups (CIWAG) for their sixth annual symposium at NWC in Newport, Rhode Island, June 25-26.
The two-day event served as an opportunity to support the NWC’s mission to help define future Navy roles and associated missions through education and research by discussing the strategic and operational challenges associated with irregular warfare and armed groups.
“The annual CIWAG symposiums serve to ensure that education and systematic analysis of armed groups stays at the forefront of the NWC’s research and teaching agenda,” said Andrea Dew, CIWAG co-director and NWC professor.
This year’s symposium theme, “The Evolution of Irregular Warfare: Military, Economic, and Informational Strategies,” focused on how armed groups exploit the seams and gaps in their opponent’s strategies, the future of both counter insurgency and special operations forces, as well as the ever increasing importance of cyber issues.
Keynote speakers for the event included Rear Adm. Brian Losey, commander, Naval Special Warfare Command, and Army Lt. Gen. Bennet S. Sacolick, director for strategic operational planning, National Counterterrorism Center.
Speakers and participants also engaged in a series of panel discussions focused on: “Indian Ocean: Deep Currents & Rising Tides,” “Strategic Thinking in 3D: A Guide for National Security, Foreign Policy, and Business Professionals,” “Cyber Control in Contemporary Conflict,” “Retrospect and Prospect COIN,” “One Hundred Victories: Special Ops and the Future of American Warfare,” “Leveraging U.S. Economic Power,” “Special Operations Forces: A Global Power,” and “Syria: The Powder Keg of the Middle East.”
“The first mission of CIWAG is to promote and support research and teaching on irregular warfare and armed groups,” said Marc Genest, CIWAG co-director and NWC professor. “Second, our job is to disseminate cutting edge research via symposia and workshops to provide informative dialogue at the NWC between U.S. and international practitioners as well as civilian, international and military scholars.”
The NWC’s CIWAG directly supports Department of Defense Directive 3000.07 by improving DOD proficiency at irregular warfare, explicitly integrating concepts and capabilities relevant to irregular warfare into DOD activities, and maintaining and supporting irregular warfare capabilities and capacity.
CIWAG is committed to an interagency approach that fosters interaction, collaboration and interagency coordination across professional military educational institutions throughout the country and with U.S. allies.
Other experts attending this year’s symposium included: Ambassador Mary Ann Peters, NWC provost; Capt. Carl Tiska, deputy director, CIWAG; retired Army Col. Stuart W. Bradin, CEO of Global SOF Foundation; Richard Calhoun, president of Cargo Carriers, Cargill Inc.; Richard Crowell, NWC associate professor; Peter Dutton, director of China Maritime Studies Institute and NWC professor; Robert J. Giesler, special adviser for Asymmetric Operations, Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory; Todd Greentree, research associate at Oxford University; Ross Harrison, professor at Georgetown University; Nicholas A. Heras, Middle East analyst at The Jamestown Foundation; Army Col. Patrick J. Mahaney Jr., chief of staff, Council on Foreign Relations; Douglas Porch, professor, Naval Postgraduate School; Linda Robinson, senior international policy analyst at RAND Corporation; Alison Russell, assistant professor at Merrimack College; Michael W.S. Ryan, senior fellow at The Jamestown Foundation; Thomas Sass, managing director of HFR Asset Management; Marine Corps Col. Robert J. Smullen, director, Small Wars Center and Capability Development Directorate, Headquarters Marine Corps; and Toshi Yoshihara, NWC professor.