Washington, DC, December 27, 2020—The National Security Archive is today posting an update to a 2004 E-book featuring a landmark but still relatively little-known State Department study of the Vietnam War from 1969. Commissioned by Thomas L. Hughes, the head of the Bureau of Intelligence and Research, it was a more modest account of the war than its more famous cousin, the Pentagon Papers. Yet in some ways it was more insightful and is considered essential to understanding the Department’s role in the conflict.
Armed Forces and Military Strategy
Washington, D.C., October 16, 2020 - Over the years, aerial and naval encounters have threatened to destabilize U.S-China relations as the two powers contest each other's rights in international airspace and waters. A major incident occurred on 31 March 2001 (Washington time) when a U.S.
Overkill, Assured Destruction, and the Search for Nuclear Alternatives: U.S. Nuclear Forces During the Cold War
Washington, D.C., May 22, 2020 – Seventy-five years after the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki marked the start of the atomic era, questions about the value, danger, and morality of nuclear weapons continue to present a huge challenge for politicians, military strategists, and ordinary citizens.
Starting to Crack a Hard Target: U.S. Intelligence Efforts against the Soviet Missile Program through 1957
Washington, D.C., February 5, 2020 – In the eyes of U.S. intelligence and the military services, the greatest threat to American national security during the early Cold War was the emerging Soviet missile program with its ability to deliver nuclear weapons to targets across the United States. Before the era of satellite surveillance, the U.S.
Washington, D.C., December 17, 2018 – During the dark days of the Cold War, spying on the enemy often took place in broad daylight. Some of the best opportunities for Western intelligence to get a picture – literally – of Soviet capabilities were presented by the USSR itself at public military parades, where the normally secretive Soviets proudly showed off to the world their arsenal of advanced hardware.
Washington, D.C., August 13, 2018 – U.S. Cyber Command’s strategy for curtailing ISIL’s ability to exploit the internet may at least partially be paying off, according to an analysis of recently declassified documents posted today by the nongovernmental National Security Archive.
The new documents, obtained under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) by Motherboard and the Archive, center around Operation GLOWING SYMPHONY, a USCYBERCOM activity authorized in late 2016 to deny the Islamic State use of the internet.
USCYBERCOM has put flesh on the bones of its skeletal strategy declaration initially released in February 2018. A month later, on March 23, the Command made public a new, 12-page “Command Vision” that substantially expands on the earlier paper (posted below). Several analysts have already remarked on its significance. For example, Richard J. Harknett at the University of Cincinnati, who was consulted on the new approach, writes in Lawfare that it “marks a significant evolution in cyber operations and strategic thinking.”
Cyberspace strategy for Strategic Command
The following was published in Survival: Global Politics and Strategy (Vol 59 No 2). War Scare Sir, In ‘Able Archer 83: What Were the Soviets Thinking’ (Survival, vol. 58, no. 6, December 2016–January 2017, pp. 7–30), Gordon Barrass makes a compelling argument that Able Archer 83 provides ‘lessons on how to analyse and respond to […]
Top Air Force Official Told JCS in 1971: “We Could Lose Two Hundred Million People [in a Nuclear War] and Still Have More Than We Had at the Time of the Civil War”
Washington, D.C. February 15, 2017 – The Air Force chief of staff told the Joint Chiefs at a September 1971 meeting that in a nuclear war the United States “could lose two hundred million people and still have more than we had at the time of the Civil War.” The quote comes from a recently declassified and highly revealing diary entry by JCS Chairman Thomas Moorer, published today for the first time by the National Security Archive at The George Washington University. The other chiefs did not challenge Gen.