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Recommended Reading

The last weekend and much of today was filled with a crush of highly aggravating, work-related, activities which I am glad to say are now over, giving me a few weeks to relax and attend to other matters, like blogging. On to Recommended Reading!!

Top Billing! HG’s WorldThe Art of Manliness, Has it Become a Lost Art?

As someone who works with students I would have to say….Yes! Neither the boys nor the girls have anything but a vague idea of what characteristics a man should be respected for and a majority of the boys lack any clear, formative, direction from a responsible adult male in their lives either for determining critically important ethics and values or such simple skills as how to put on a tie (if I had a dime for every boy who I had to teach how to put on their tie I’d have…well….a large jar of dimes). Eminent Harvard professor and gadfly, Harvey C. Mansfield, defends manliness here.

It’s the Tribes, StupidTribes in Afghanistan: A Guest Post from Michael Yon and “Writing Wednesdays” #3: The Nature of Epiphanies

Steven Pressfield opens his blog to Michael Yon and every Wednesday devotes a post each week to the “War of Art” – especially the art of writing ( bloggers-who-are-aspiring-authors take note!).

Futurejacked –  Rage

Making John Robb, Bill Lind,  Robert Paterson and that really angry white dude at Clusterf***k Nation look like cheerful optimists

SEEDRoboethics Redux

Go Robo or go home!


Outside the Beltway (Dave Schuler)What Are Our Strategic Objectives in Afghanistan? –NEW!

Dr. Bernard Finel responds to my previous commentary with his own version of  COIN and Anti-COIN

Wings over Iraq opines on the COIN and Anti-COIN and the debate at Abu Muqawama with Afghanistan Shrugged?  and Afghanistan Shrugged, Part II

Project White HorseEEI #10 Thinking about War – Mitigating and Accepting Risk ( Thanks Ed!)

Abu Muqawama hosts a debate on Afghanistan – Debating the Cost of Afghanistan, The Afghanistan Strategy Dialogue: Abu Aardvark Jumps In, The Afghanistan Strategy Dialogue: Day Three, The Afghanistan Strategy Dialogue: Day Two, The Afghanistan Strategy Dialogue: Day One, Maybe Bacevich Has a Point: Introducing the Afghanistan Strategy Dialogue

Fabius MaximusExum: “Introducing the Afghanistan Strategy Dialogue”

Thomas PM BarnettSysAdmin plus drone strikes

Kings of WarTo be or not to be? On expeditionary campaign in Afghanistan that is, and Afghanistan: Two years from now you’ll be saying ‘Marcellus Wallace was right.’

CTLab/ Intelligence (Michael Innes)Vietnam’s Lessons For Afghanistan

In adding material I may have lost one of the original links – if any readers see a discrepancy from earlier, please leave a note in the comments and I will fix the omission.

6 Responses to “Recommended Reading”

  1. T. Greer Says:

    Two thoughts-

    1. I have always enjoyed The Art of Manliness. It is an engaging site, which I read semi-regularly and have contributed to once or twice. Beyond the fun grooming, culinary, and adventure themed articles highlighted by HG, The Art of Manliness is often a source of thought-provoking and inspiring work, such as their recent peice on modern "Neurasthenia".

    Kay S. Hymowitz wrote an insightful article for City Journal concerning America’s generational shift away from manliness. I recommend reading her article, "Child Man in the Promised Land", if you are interested in such things.

    2. I almost think the COINdista section of the blogosphere is too large! I thought I had read all the responses to Exum’s challenge, but it seems that the number of posts has doubled in the time it took me to read the first batch. It seems I have a day of reading cut out for me tomorrow…
    On a more serious note, I wonder at the timing of this debate. I imagine it was prompted by the shock of Exum’s recent trip to Afghanistan, but this does not make things any better. A strategic reevaluation  should happen after there is something to reevaluate, no? An evaluation of Mchystal’s plan will be due in a year. Wouldn’t the anti-COIN revolution be better off making its assault when such an assault might have actual policy consequences?

  2. Dave Schuler Says:

    Mark, I don’t know if you’ve seen it but my little cri de coeur over at Outside the Beltway may be worthy of consideration, at least in my reminding folks of what the strategic objectives in Afghanistan were in 2003.
    Before one can reasonably evaluate whether counter-insurgency is the right set of tactics I would think that we should consider what the strategic objectives are.  I find it troubling that the Obama Adminstration has neither re-affirmed the Bush Administration’s objectives nor articulated objectives of its own in this regard.  Perhaps it’s enough to be not-Bush.
    Analogous to its tactic of leaving energy policy and healthcare policy to the Congress, the Administration may be content to leave Afghanistan policy to the military.

  3. Ed Beakley Says:

    at PWH,  http://blog.projectwhitehorse.com/2009/08/08/eei-10/
    Thanks for including

  4. zen Says:

    hi T.Greer,
    I liked the site. It’s culturally contraindicatory – at least the culture since circa 1972 or so and as I get older, I’m less and less inclined to go along with the unspoken presumptions that are irrationally or unthinkingly anti-male. I think the tipping point may have been when my son was sent home from his primary classroom with an "advanced reading book" about a girl and her bunny.  Seriously, while his teacher was a nice lady, an effective teacher and meant well, what normal boy would give two s***s about that kind of a story? That’s typical of most school approved reading lists these days. Female-oriented. It’s hard enough getting boys to read as it is.
    The anti-COIN folks vary in their motives and COIN is being inflated into some kind of 25 year Roman legionary version that Nagl and Kilcullen never advocated ( and probably oppose ).
    Hi Dave & Ed,
    Thanks for the heads up, both of you. Sorry for dropping PWP earlier. I added Dave’s post and the entire bottom half of the links vanished after I saved. I don’t think though that the Obama admin have affirmed the Bush objectives, I read them as being in flux or a holding pattern without a final decision.

  5. historyguy99 Says:

    Thanks for the billing Mark!

    I agree that it seems that there is a over abundance of feminization. I saw the same thing happening when my son was in grade school in the 90’s. Thankfully, the reading material available at home was history oriented. It paid off, he now mows through books like a scyth.  Like all mighty cultural pendulums, this will begin to swing the other way in time.

  6. Dave Schuler Says:

    Silence signifies assent.

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