The Modern War Institute podcast is the flagship podcast of the Modern War Institute at West Point. Featured guests include senior military and defense leaders, scholars, and others who discuss the most important issues related to modern conflict.
How Militaries Adapt
What are the hallmarks of an adaptable military force? What types of leaders best create cultures of adaptability in their formations? How do such forces employ rapidly changing technologies? And how does doctrine drive or limit adaptation? Dr. Nora Bensahel and retired Lt. Gen. Dave Barno—authors of the book Adaptation Under Fire: How Militaries Change in Wartime—join this episode to discuss these questions and more.
Survival at the Top of the World
In this episode Ryan Burke—codirector of MWI's Project 6633—visits the Air Force’s Arctic Survival School at Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska. He speaks with several members of the school’s staff, who describe the unique challenges—matters of life and death—that forces operating in the extreme environment of the Arctic confront. Listen as they also explain how they train students at the school so they are best prepared and equipped to manage and overcome those challenges.
The Future Defense of Europe
This episode features a discussion with retired Lt. Gen. Ben Hodges. He served until 2017 as the commanding general of US Army Europe and now holds the pershing Chair in Strategic Studies at the Center for European Policy Analysis. Listen as he shares his insights on the topic of European defense—including a range of issues that make it especially complex today and will make it even more so in the future. The conversation touches on everything from logistical challenges to interoperability to the nuances of European defense politics to the implications of a rising China on European security.
Special Operations Forces in the High North
In this episode, Col. Brian Rauen and Capt. Barrett Martin join to talk about the increasing importance of the Arctic. Col. Rauen is the commander of 10th Special Forces Group, and Capt. Martin is one of the officers assigned to the group. 10th Group has a particular focus on Europe, which means the unit has a natural organizational interest in the Arctic region. As you’ll hear our guests explain, though, that interest is growing. They discuss why that's the case, and they talk about some of the unique challenges posed by such an extreme environment. The episode features a guest host, Dr. Ryan Burke, who is an MWI fellow and co-director of Project 6633, an MWI project focused on polar security.
10th Group and Project 6633 have also partnered to organize an essay contest, inviting submissions that address the question of how American special operations forces can compete with near-peer adversaries in the polar regions. If you’re interested in entering, more details about the contest can be found here.
How Science Can Help Us Meet the Cognitive Demands of War
This episode features a conversation with Dr. Amy Kruse, who was at the time of recording the chief scientific officer at the Platypus Institute. She discusses "Human 2.0," a concept she describes a vision of where humans are headed in terms of cognitive performance. She also describes how this concept overlays on what we know about the cognitive demands of war.
Note: This episode was originally released in 2018.
The British Army in Iraq and Afghanistan
This episode features a discussion with Simon Akam, author of the book The Changing of the Guard: The British Army Since 9/11. The book tells the story of nearly two decades of the service's experiences in Iraq and Afghanistan. Critical of the British Army's leadership at times, it aims to jumpstart an honest conversation about the those wars, the service's performance in them, the relationship between the UK military and the British people, and more. It's an insightful, thought-provoking conversation that brings into focus issues that are important not just in the United Kingdom but in the United States, as well.
Thanks a bunch for the great podcasts. I really like the discussions wherein the military is contextualized in the broader national security and whole of government strategies.
Combatives Feb 17 Podcast
The Capitol Police and DC Metro Police need the skills described by Mr Larson as evidenced by Events of Jan 6.
Stop with the F-35 Propaganda.
Fairly good podcast on most topics...except the F35. The propaganda on that thing is found all over the place including this podcast. This notion that its so much better than the A-10. If the A-10 was as slow and worthless as they say, then how come the F-16s could not get the job done in the Gulf War and they brought in the A-10s? Also, at no point does anyone talk about the low amount of weapons the F-35 can carry. The A-10, for 12 million per, can deliver munitions all day; the F-35 for 115 million per, will quickly run out of munitions. Like, about 220 rounds of 25mm for the F-35 vs 1200 rounds of 30mm for the A-10...no contest. A-10 is hands down the better aircraft for ground support, and there are so many metrics that prove that; and for the same money you can flood the air with A-10s. Its time to stop with the lies when it comes to these military pet projects, its not helping the military look good.