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Alan W. Dowd

Missiles, Mistakes and Madmen

Written by: Alan W. Dowd | Posted: Jun 2, 2015

Three decades ago, there were nine countries that fielded ballistic missiles. Today, there are 32. Excluding the U.S., Russian and Chinese arsenals, the number of ballistic missiles in the world has swelled from 1,200 to 6,000 in recent years. ...

Triaging the Middle East

Written by: Alan W. Dowd | Posted: Apr 27, 2015

What some have termed “Islam’s civil war” is dizzying in its complexity: Syria, Iraq, Libya and Yemen appear to be fracturing along sectarian fault lines. The air forces of Egypt and the UAE are striking jihadist groups in Libya. ...

NATO’s Playbook for Putinism

Written by: Alan W. Dowd | Posted: Apr 13, 2015

The Landing Zone, February 20, 2015  A year after deploying troops to wage asymmetric, anonymous warfare against a sovereign, peaceful neighbor, annexing the Crimean peninsula, and carving out an armed Russian zone in eastern Ukraine, Russian ...

Truth or Consequences

Written by: Alan W. Dowd | Posted: Apr 13, 2015

The American Legion Magazine, March 2015  “Americans like security,” Niall Ferguson concludes in his book Colossus. “But they like Social Security more than they like national security.”[1] With defense ...

A Volcano of Violence

Written by: Alan W. Dowd | Posted: Apr 13, 2015

The American Legion Magazine, April 2015 He controls 34,000 square miles of territory—an area the size of Costa Rica. He commands an army larger than Belgium’s and perhaps larger than Canada’s. He has a $2-billion budget at his ...

System Administrator

Written by: Alan W. Dowd | Posted: Mar 30, 2015

The nation-state system has served to organize the world for the better part of 400 years, but it’s under withering assault today. Just glance at the headlines: ISIS is maiming and murdering its way toward a borderless caliphate enfolding ...

The Problem of Foreign Policy

Written by: Alan W. Dowd | Posted: Mar 3, 2015

Americans realized after World War II that “security was something that had to be worked at, to be managed,” Derek Leebaert writes in The Fifty Year Wound. “Americans could not turn their backs on the world.” Yet today, 58 ...

Rediscovering America’s Purpose

Written by: Alan W. Dowd | Posted: Jan 30, 2015

What is America’s place and purpose in the world? Over the centuries, Americans have answered that question in many different ways. When the United States was young and weak, Washington prudently plotted a path of studied nonintervention, ...

Awareness without Action

Written by: Alan W. Dowd | Posted: Jan 9, 2015

When asked about his limited response to ISIS, President Obama recently said he is not interested in “devoting another trillion dollars, after having been involved in big occupations of countries that didn’t turn out all that ...

Beijing’s Buildup—and America’s Answer

Written by: Alan W. Dowd | Posted: Dec 18, 2014

The Landing Zone, December 18, 2014 China’s new J-31 stealth fighter made its debut at an international airshow last month, prompting a U.S. fighter pilot to predict, “They’ll eventually be on par with our fifth-gen jets.” ...

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