Saturday, October 31, 2009

On Loyalty - Up, and down the chain of command

While the fabric that has held society together has worn thinner in our modern age, it is still loyalty that lends the cloth its strength. It is loyalty that keeps the world functioning. We could not conduct business transactions or personal relationship without it. Loyalty is the idea that we are who we say we are and we will do what we say we will do. It is the hope that the integrity with which we initially encountered someone will endure indefinitely.

It’s also what keeps us unified. We live out our lives as part of agreed upon norms that allow us to operate from day to day. We need to know who we can count on. We all understand that ideally, friends will have your back, lovers will remain true, and businesses will not cheat you out of your money. When someone is disloyal, they break from these expectations and weaken the trust that holds us together.

From The Philosophy of Loyalty by Josiah Royce

Harvard Lecture Series 1908

Friday, October 30, 2009

Standup of OPNAV N2/N6 - Landmark











Honor Our Heroes

"Any Nation that does not honor its heroes will not long endure."

Abraham Lincoln

"A Nation reveals itself not only by the the men it produces, but also by the men it honors, the men it remembers."

John F. Kennedy

Thursday, October 29, 2009

The Elements of Personal Virtue

For a real leader, the elements of personal virtue – self-reliance, self-control, honor, truthfulness, morality – are absolute.

President John Adams wrote to one of his sons:
  • A young man should weigh well his plans.
  • Integrity should be preserved in all events, as essential to his happiness, through every stage of his existence.
  • His first maxim should be to place his honor out of reach of all men.
The true measure of leadership is how you react when the wind leaves your sails, when the tide turns against you.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Liberty - not very liberating

Our Navy is somewhat unique in how it treats time-off (off duty hours = liberty) for its service members. We've taken a punish (restrictions on liberty) the 'whole' for the actions of the few (or even one). This process has not worked, is not working and will not work. Realists (Sailors) understand this. Somehow, senior officers do not.

I can recall the liberty rules for Commander, SEVENTH Fleet (C7F) Staff embarked aboard USS BLUE RIDGE (LCC-19) in the mid 1990s. Due to 'liberty incidents', we (all of us - E1 to O6) were required to have a 'liberty buddy' to leave the ship. And, we were required to return to the ship with the same 'liberty buddy' we left with. We had a USMC Colonel (Bill Wesley) who challenged the C7F Chief of Staff (CoS) and said that it was Colonel Wesley's view that this rule could not possibly apply to anyone on the staff above E3. The CoS assured the Colonel that it applied to All Hands. The Colonel simply said "Bullsh*t" and walked off the ship alone. As a Lieutenant Commander at the time, I either found a 'buddy' or simply remained on the ship. I had much more to worry about with regard to my future career than did the Colonel.

You can read about other Sailors' opinions at NAVY TIMES.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

From Days Gone By - Navy Day

The Navy League sponsored the first national observance of Navy Day in 1922 designed to give recognition to the naval service. The Navy League of New York proposed that the official observance be on 27 October in honor of President Theodore Roosevelt, who had been born on that day.

In 1972, Admiral Elmo Zumwalt authorized recognition of 13 October as the Navy's birthday. In contrast to Navy Day, the Navy Birthday is intended as an internal activity for members of the active forces and reserves, as well as retirees, and dependents.

Responsibility, Authority and Accountability (Immutable Triad - RA2)

"On the sea there is a tradition older even than the traditions of the country itself and wiser in its age than this new custom. It is the tradition that with responsibility goes authority and with them accountability.

...for men will not long trust leaders who feel themselves beyond accountability for what they do.
...And when men lose confidence and trust in those who lead, order disintegrates into chaos and purposeful ships into uncontrollable derelicts."
"On The Collision of Wasp and Hobson"
Wall Street Journal, Editorial 14 May 1952

Read: LEADERSHIP SAVES LIVES by Commander Scott Lippold
The commanding officer of the USS Cole when it was attacked by al Qaeda in the port of Aden, Yemen, Lippold and his crew distinguished themselves by saving the ship from sinking. One of the seminal events of the war on terror, the aftermath of the attack established Lippold as one of the premiere leadership experts in America today.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Our Pre-eminence

"We must maintain our pre-eminence in networks, intelligence and information. There is no other service or nation that has the history, capabilities, or is as good at this as we are."

Admiral Gary Roughead
Chief of Naval Operations

Sunday, October 25, 2009

COMNAVSECGRU Achievement Number 4

Short Title: Selection of officers for key command assignments.

Date/Place: 1987. Staff Washington DC

Problem or situation:

Too many commanding officers were falling short of standards for command. The selection responsibility rested with the Chief of Naval Personnel (CNP).


CNSG convinced USN hierarchy that the process should be its responsibility. CNSG would be better able to assess command candidates by assembling a small number of trusted 1610 seniors who could better factor important considerations based on longer exposure/experience. CNSG would forward its recommendations to CNP for approval.


CNSG developed the best leadership in the history of its existence.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

The Reason for the Naval Security Group

We’ve been there, where the sea is black, and nights are fearsome long,
And high above a border line that knows not Freedom’s song,
We stood the watch, that you might dream of football – and your fun;
And, in so doing, kept the faith as a dad does, for his son.

My boots walked firmly, step for step, beside a sundered yard
Where halfway down, the flowers failed, replaced by sullen guards,
Whose weapons were at the ready – whose orders clearly said:
“Our Wall protects the workers; all others: shoot them dead.”

I’ve dwelt among host-foreigners, the noble and the base,
Whose leaders claimed Utopia, but forgot the Human Race
For power or for money, for pleasure, or for might,
For ego or insanity – for a stand-by chartered flight.

Some of us were twidgets – early geeks and many wires
Others probed the foeman’s brains and stole his covert fires
That would have brought us harm and woe, had ‘guhor’ never been,
Whose users, wild but thoughtful, were the sharpest ever seen.

We had our Tower of Babel – so many spoke in tongues!
A multitude were engineers, who hummed electron songs,
Some knew the right locations of the large ship and the small,
For when we got to working, none escaped us, none at all!

It was out there, on the border, where a zephyr is not found –
In No-Man’s Land – the ocean – on the froze (or boiling) ground,
The reason that we stood the watch is simple, when you think:
Our eyes and ears were needed, and they kept us from the brink.

It started with a spark gap. It ended with a sigh,
Of packets and encryption as the secret numbers fly.
Today the watch is sternly stood in binary and Hex –
With ‘dih-dah dead, it’s anybody’s guess of what comes next!

TAMORI* stood a lively watch; today, let others take
Our posits and then work them hard – and see what they can make;
In sea and sky, from pole to pole, what’s made can be undone,
In work or play, we all can say: we had an honest run!

Captain Steven Myers
1610 - retired

*TAMORI refers to CTT (Cryptologic Technician Technical), CTA (Administrative), CTM (Maintenance), CTO (Operator - Comms), CTR (Collection) and CTI (Interpretive)

Friday, October 23, 2009

60,000 Visits - Thank you !

Notable COMNAVSECGRU Achievements

Title: Establishment of the Cryptologic Division Officers' Course (CDOC)

Date/Place: 1986. CNSG HQ, 3801 Nebraska Avenue NW, Washington, D.C.


New cryptologic officers received no formal training in our field. They learned by the seat of their pants. Many were unsteady and the great majority felt 'cheated' that they were held accountable for performance of duties for which they received no training.

- Appointed experienced officers to establish a formal training curriculum.

- Outlined a general strategy with a goal to convene first class within 24 months.

- Made our case and sold the idea in the Pentagon and to the budgeteers.

- Because of the unique aspects of our business and its dynamic challenges, successfully lobbied to control the school in my own command.

On time, full 16 week curriculum. Now an entry level requirement for all cryptologic officers. Commanding officers around the world have documented the improvement. Officers qualify much earlier and now make instant contributions. Morale, confidence are much higher. Course delivered on time and within budget.

Thursday, October 22, 2009


Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates announced today that the President has nominated Navy Vice Adm. Bernard J. McCullough III for reappointment to the grade of vice admiral and assignment as Commander, Fleet Cyber Command/Commander, Tenth Fleet, Fort Meade, Md. McCullough is currently serving as deputy chief of naval operations for integration of capabilities and resources, N8, Office of the Chief of Naval Operations, Pentagon, Washington, DC.

Vice Admiral Bernard J. "Barry" McCullough, III
Deputy Chief of Naval Operations
for Integration of Capabilities and Resources (N8)

Vice Admiral Bernard J.  "Barry" McCullough, III

From Weirton, W.Va., Vice Admiral Bernard J. "Barry" McCullough graduated from the United States Naval Academy with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Naval Architecture and was commissioned on June 4, 1975. Additionally, Vice Adm. McCullough completed Naval Nuclear Power training and received a Master of Science degree in Strategic Resource Management from the Industrial College of the Armed Forces at National Defense University.

Vice Adm. McCullough's sea tours include serving as Commander, Carrier Strike Group 6/Commander, John F. Kennedy Strike Group. He also served as Commander Carrier Strike Group 14/Commander, Enterprise Strike Group. Vice Adm. McCullough's major command was aboard USS Normandy (CG 60) from February 1999 until February 2001.

Prior to commanding Normandy, he served as Commanding Officer aboard USS Scott (DDG 995) and USS Gemini (PHM 6). Other sea assignments were: Operations Officer for Commander 2nd Fleet/Striking Fleet Atlantic, Engineer Officer aboard USS Enterprise (CVN 65), Engineer Officer aboard USS Virginia (CGN 38), and Main Propulsion Assistant aboard USS Texas (CGN 39).

Vice Adm. McCullough's shore tours include serving as Director, Warfare Integration and Assessment Division (N8F), Director, Surface Warfare Division, (N86), Commander, Navy Region Hawaii and Naval Surface Group Middle Pacific, the Director for Strategy and Analysis, J5, at U.S. Joint Forces Command, 1st Battalion Officer at the United States Naval Academy and as the Department Head for the D1G Prototype Nuclear Power Plant at Nuclear Power Training Unit, Ballston Spa, N.Y. Vice Adm. McCullough assumed his current responsibilities as Deputy Chief of Naval Operations for Integration of Capabilities and Resources (N8) in November 2007.

His decorations and awards include: Defense Superior Service Medal, Legion of Merit, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Navy Commendation Medal, and Navy Achievement Medal. Additionally, he is authorized to wear numerous unit and campaign awards.

As a Proven Champion of Many Lost Causes - GOLD Medal goes to me

For a little over 14 months I had been trying to convince NPC and NNWC to confer Naval Aviation Observer wings on RADM G. Pat March who spent a fair amount of time flying the P4M as a Communications Intelligence (COMINT) Evaluator (COMEVAL). Despite prior success in getting NAO wings for several other 1610 officers in the past, I failed to convince 'the powers that be' on the merits of RADM March's case. Although, RADM March had no expectations, mine were high - but recently dashed. Two days after the Admiral's death on 18 October 2009, I got word from NPC that the request was denied.

As indicated below - RADM March was not optimistic (or concerned) about approval.

"Although we drew flight skins (pay), we COMINT types in those days were never designated TAOs like the ELINT people in the rear end of the aircraft who were attached to NAVCOMMUNIT 32G. As I recall, it was because we had not gone through the evasion and escape survival course. Actually, I have a pair of TAO wings. When I was CO at Kamiseya, I happened to be chatting with some of the personnel in 5th Division (the ones who manned the direct support teams afloat, in the air, and submerged) and was good-naturedly grousing about the fact that I didn't receive wings although I had been doing what they were doing (and had earned them). A few months later the 5th Division presented me with a desk pen set that had a pair of wings mounted on the base. It's still on my desk, of course."

RADM G. Pat March
Former Commander, Naval Security Group Command

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

More on our dear friend RADM Pat March - THE Cryptologist of the United States Navy - has rested his oars, folded his sails and taken his last flight

Rear Admiral George Patrick March, U.S. Navy (Retired), a resident of the Olympia, WA area since 1995, passed into the "Great Beyond" on October 18, 2009 at the age of 85. He suffered a cerebral hemorrhage on the squash court (doing what he loved). A lifelong learner, he had completed his Spanish lessons earlier in the day.

Born in Corvallis, Oregon ("God's country"), into a pioneer family on 16 January 1924, he lived in Valsetz from 1928 to 1933 after which he moved to Portland. Following graduation from Lincoln High School in 1941, he attended Oregon State College (now University) for two years before entering the U.S. Naval Academy. He graduated from that institution (with a B.S. in Marine Engineering) and was commissioned Ensign in June 1946. On 20 December of that year he married the beautiful Betty Eileen Saum ("Saumie"). Pat's love for Saumie was as legendary as RADM Eugene Ince's lifelong romance with his wife Jean. After two years of destroyer duty, he studied the Russian language at the Navy's Intelligence School in Washington, D.C. He became a specialist in the field of cryptology in 1949 and for the next 29 years pursued a career that included staff and command assignments at sea, on foreign shore and in the Washington, D.C. area. His foreign shore duty included Morocco (where he flew extensively aboard the P4M-Q1 Mercator as a Communications Intelligence evaluator (COMEVAL)), Germany, France, Cyprus, England and Japan. He also served one year in Hawaii He was the OP-94 (DNC) and CNSG senior representative at the USS Pueblo crew debrief 12/68 – 1/69. In 1973 he was promoted to the rank of Rear Admiral and assigned as an Assistant Director of the National Security Agency. The following year he was ordered to duty as the Commander, Naval Security Group Command, with additional duty as the Director, Electronic Warfare and Cryptology Division, on the staff of the Chief of Naval Operations. He retired from the Navy in 1978. Wherever he went he inspired people to do their very best. Annually (throughout the 1980s), he made pilgrimages to Naval Security Group Detachment Barbers Point, Hawaii to present the RADM G. P. March Award to the best linguists in the Navy. He loved sharing an Olympia beer (or six) with his Sailors.

When on duty in the Washington, D.C. area, he attended evening classes at Georgetown University, receiving his MA in 1952 and PhD in 1965 in the field of Russian History. After retirement from the Navy, he commenced post-doctoral work at the University of Hawaii in the field of East Asian Studies, which involved the study of the Mandarin and Classical Chinese languages. From 1983 to 1993 he lectured in history for the University of Hawaii. In addition to articles published in the journals Sibirica and Pacific Historical Review, he authored two published books: Cossacks of the Brotherhood: The Zaporog Kosh of the Dnieper River (1990) and Eastern Destiny: Russia in Asia and the North Pacific (1996). His vast array of interests and deep desire to keep learning kept him vitally engaged in life.

Since retirement in Olympia, he has been involved with golf at the Olympia Country and Golf Club (3 holes-in-one!), with squash racquets at the Valley Athletic Club, and with the Olympia World Affairs Council.

He loved and respected people, his friends were very dear to him and he had absolute dedication and love for his family. He lost his wife, Saumie in 2006 and is survived by three devoted daughters, Molly, Terry and Peggy and their spouses; five grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren. Over the years he apologized to me for his lack of correspondence but cited the need to devote some well-deserved attention to his three girls and their families. ((His note: "First, my apologies for being so slow to respond to you. After all, being a latter day historian, I am in favor of leaving records, especially written ones, for posterity. My three daughters were here for their annual pilgrimage part of last month, the only time in the year they get to see each other because of their rather wide geographical distribution. Their presence takes precedence over just about any other endeavors!"))

Ceremonies and inurnment will take place at the U.S. Naval Academy Columbarium in Annapolis, Maryland on December 5th. On Friday, October 23, 2009 at 12:00 noon a reception will be held at the Olympia Country and Golf Club so that those who knew and appreciated Pat can gather to celebrate the life of this remarkable man - a genuine officer and gentleman of the highest order.

Published in The Olympian on October 21, 2009

His anecdote about his admission to the United States Naval Academy:

"My mother read a book entitled “Annapolis Today” while I was in High School, and at her urging, I read it. I hadn’t really developed any special career thoughts; so it piqued my interest, and I signed up for the “competitive” exam for an appointment to the Naval Academy by Senator Holman. In due course, I received a “second alternate” appointment, which is like kissing your sister. So I went off to Oregon State College (now University) in Corvallis to study chemical engineering.

I took the test again that following year, with the same result. During that freshman year, Pearl Harbor was bombed and we were in WWII. I was in ROTC (Army) and signed up in the Enlisted Reserve Corps of the Army; so I was eligible for call up at the pleasure of the government. During my sophomore year I took the exam a third time and initially with the same results again.

Then, a strange thing happened. My sister Catherine’s husband was flying with the Army Air Corps; so she moved into an apartment next door to a nice, older couple in Portland. The husband, upon learning that Catherine’s little brother was trying to get an appointment from Senator Holman, indicated that he was having lunch with the Senator the following day. Knowing that we were from a pioneer family, he suggested that if Catherine could give him a run-down of the family history in Oregon by 8:00 the next morning, he would see what could be done.

In ten days I had received a principal appointment! So it wasn’t what one knew but rather whom one knew. The irony is that when I entered the Academy, I happened to run across the person who had been appointed the year before – he had just bilged out! So much for the “competitive” part of the exam!"

Native American Indian Month Quotable - "Sustain Mother Earth"

“We must draw strength from the similarities between the Native American values: honor, truth and brotherhood; our Navy core values: honor, courage and commitment; and our common goal of sustaining Mother Earth.”

Mr. Jerome P. Rapin
Head of the Navy Cryptologic Office
National Security Agency/Central Security Service

Senior Executive Service
Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians

As a fellow Native American Indian, of Cherokee descent (I am told), I thought this was a suitable quote for Native American Indian month. I wish I knew what tribe I was from.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Leadership Secrets of a Masterful Navy Leader - RADM Pat March - in his own words

“Traits to make me a successful officer”
  • Belief in the importance of the mission of the Navy and the Cryptologic Community and the ability to articulate and pass that belief on to subordinates.
  • Readiness to undertake any mission and to accept the job assigned. I never campaigned for any certain position but rather tried to do the best I could at what the Navy decided I should be doing. This is why, when I was the Assignment Officer in BuPers, I sometimes wasn’t too sympathetic with young officers whining when they came into my office.
  • From the very beginning understood the importance of the Chief Petty Officers.
  • I have a facility for getting along with people, but, at the same time, I think I had an inherent sense of what was important and what was fair – both to the Navy and to the individual.
“Traits to make me a successful cryptologist”
  • I suppose a basic fascination with puzzles and the ability to write a coherent story from fragmentary data.
“Leadership philosophy”
  • Very simply, application of the Golden Rule (“Do unto others as you would that they should do unto you”). Basically I tried to be “hard but fair.” And most basic of all, praise in public and criticize in private.
  • Be clear about what is expected from subordinates but give vent to and encourage their initiative.
  • Know your people. I’m not talking mollycoddling or improper fraternization, but observe and listen to your officers and Chief Petty Officers.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Sadly Reporting The Passing of Former Commander, Naval Security Group Command - RADM G. Patrick March

Service Date
6/1946 - 9/1978

Born 1/16/1924
Passed 10/18/2009



United States Naval Academy - B.S. Marine Engineering
U.S. Navy War College - M.S.
Georgetown University - PhD in Russian History

Missions, Tasks and Functions of the former Naval Security Group Command

Sunday, October 18, 2009

A Genuine Officer and A Gentleman

Happy Birthday Rear Admiral Eugene S. Ince Jr.

On this date in 1926, E.S. Ince Jr. was born to Eugene and Jay Green Ince. He is an only child. The love of his life, Jean Marion Gregory Ince passed on 12 January 2009. Theirs was a love story that lasted a lifetime. His proposal to Jean is truly legendary and their story has been featured in Gourmet Magazine and many others. They were married on 8 June 1949 in Oak Park, Illinois following his graduation from the United States Naval Academy-Annapolis, Maryland.

Admiral Ince was a Naval Aviator. During the Korean War, he deployed with VA-115 in USS PHILIPPINE SEA and USS KEARSARGE. He had 128 successful carrier 'traps'. Following the Korean War, he was a flight instructor. He attended the Naval Postgraduate School (Naval Intelligence) and the Defense Language Institute (Russian) in Monterey, California. In June 1960 he changed designators from 1310 (Naval Aviator) to 1610 (Special Duty- Cryptology). From 1966-1968, he was the Commanding Officer of NSGA Skaggs Island. He went on to become the Operations Officer (G50) for Naval Security Group Command and the Deputy OP944B at OPNAV.

He served as Commander, Naval Security Group Command from August 1978 to September 1980.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Admiral Arleigh A. Burke's Leadership as CNO

Several useful points can be gleaned from studying Burke’s leadership as CNO and several areas can be highlighted that deserve further study.

First, like any person, Burke was stronger in some strategic leadership areas than others. He possessed exceptional conceptual skills, including a keen ability to grasp a situation quickly. Part of that ability was owed directly to the breadth and depth of his knowledge and experience, which provided accurate frames of reference to steer his judgment. This robust base was in no small part a natural result of the positions he was assigned and the unique circumstances he found himself in throughout his time in the Navy. Significant to note, however, is that the remainder of his broad knowledge base was self-developed through personal research, reading, and study. His joining the Brookings Institute to increase his understanding of world economic and political issues is a good example. His thirst for knowledge and understanding of issues that did, or might, affect the Navy was insatiable. Admiral Burke also proved particularly strong in interpersonal skills and influencing actions. Understanding that at the strategic level his ability to influence, vice simply order people, was a far more effective leadership tool allowed Burke to make the leap to influencing actions at the highest level of leadership.

In an organization the size of the Navy Burke could not possibly oversee every item or program to completion. For things to get done quickly and correctly Burke understood communication and motivation were essential--individuals below him had to believe in the mission and in turn take ownership of a particular concern or program and see it through to successful completion. The tactful way in which he dealt with senior admirals bypassed in his promotion to CNO, as well as his efforts to communicate his vision and shape Navy culture are examples of his strength in these areas. Burke also understood his role as strategic leader in the larger national context. He perceived his civilian superiors as successful leaders in the corporate world who sacrificed a lot in terms of compensation and corporate prestige to take positions in government. He also knew he was picked purposely to shake up the institution of the Navy and accelerate its transformation from an era of bullets and propeller driven airplanes to one of jets, guided missiles, and nuclear potential. Technology was advancing at a pace more rapidly than ever and the Navy could not afford to remain on its traditional, conservative course. Burke was “hired” to lead substantial institutional change--he did not disappoint civilian leadership.

Conversely, while Burke respected and appreciated his civilian superiors he did not let his respect inhibit speaking out on issues about which he felt strongly. Several times he challenged decisions and policies of his civilian chain of command and drew resulting fire on himself. For example, within days of taking over as CNO Burke felt compelled, after arguing his point to no avail with the Navy and Defense Secretaries, to take a manpower issue directly to the president. His fortitude was rewarded with the president’s support on the issue but punished in turn by both chastisement from his commander in chief and by icy relations with the Secretaries for a time. Fortunately for Burke, before long it became clear to his civilian leaders that Burke was correct on the issue and their relationships with Burke eventually became stronger for the affair.

From: Admiral Burke - A Study in Strategic Leadership
LCDR Daniel Shaarda

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Achieving Information Dominance - Priorities & Objectives for the 21st Century

End State
The complex threat we face and the operations we conduct both today and in the future require all Navy professionals to skillfully contribute to, access, and utilize intelligence. For the near future, we will continue to work to prevent the next terrorist surprise and support combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.

As the Navy establishes a global network of Maritime Headquarters with/Maritime Operation Centers (MHQ w/MOC) the demand for the timely, relevant, and predictive intelligence, which is critical to its success, will increase. While our future challenges are complex and tied to an ever-changing strategic environment, the solutions lie in recruiting the best, developing them to the highest standards, to achieve deep knowledge of the adversary and in-depth understanding of the maritime environment; therefore we will . . .
  • Become the nation’s pre-eminent Intelligence and Information Operations work force
  • Achieve a competitive advantage by harmonizing Intelligence and Information Operations
  • Acquire a profound knowledge of adversaries and the environment
  • Incorporate innovative information-based concepts, technologies, processes
  • Recruit, develop and retain the brightest, most innovative and highly educated people we can attract who will lead our nation’s intelligence and information-based professions
Our future challenges are complex, but the desired end state for Navy Intelligence and Information Operations is simple and clear.

From Vice Admiral Dorsett's paper on the subject dated July 2008.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

How Many Admirals Graduate From USNA?

Many years ago, I was with a small group of visitors, being driven by bus, who stopped at the United States Naval Academy for a brief tour of this national treasure. As we made our way through the main gate on foot, one member of our group asked the Marine corporal guarding the gate if he knew how many Admirals graduated from the Academy. The Marine thought for a few seconds and replied,

"None, Sir. I think they only graduate Ensigns and 2nd Lieutenants."

Monday, October 12, 2009

CNO's 2nd Anniversary - 29 September 2009

I am usually pretty good about birthdays, anniversaries and such. But I missed this one.

From Galrahn over at USNI Blog who had this, and a lot more to say.

...My assessment is that ADM Gary Roughead has completely changed the Navy in just two years, and that action has made him a lot of enemies. The Navy rejects any changes as an instinct.

...ADM Gary Roughead took over as CNO under impossible conditions and circumstances on paper, and has executed his plan to put the Navy on a solid footing heading into the second decade of the 21st century. I have no idea what the new administration or the Secretary of Defense thinks of Admiral Gary Roughead as CNO, but I do know one thing: Gary Roughead was handed an impossible situation and has guided the Navy through the minefield to make the future Navy look a lot more possible, and whether one approves or disapproves of how he has done it, or the direction he is steering the ship…
For my part, I sincerely appreciate the CNO's willingness to carry on a dialog via e-mail with this retired Navy Captain. We've exchanged thoughts on diversity, the Navy as a Top 50 Employer, the VADM Stockdale Award and a few others. He's got a tough job, seems like an honorable man (who did not tolerate VADM Stufflebeem's semantic answers to the IG), and he cares about our Sailors. I am good with all that.

Congratulations CNO on a solid performance over the past two years. BZ.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Information Capable Warrior (ICW)

The genesis of the Information Capable Warrior study was a series of informal flag discussions begun at the All Flag Officer Training Symposium (AFOTS) in 2006 regarding the growing criticality for Navy warfighters to conduct effects-based operations in the Information Domain. This white paper represents a synthesis of the ideas that have been developed in various forums and discussions sponsored by Naval Network Warfare Command. Representatives from all Navy Unrestricted Line (URL) and information-centric communities—Information Professional (IP), Information Warfare (IW), Intelligence (INTEL), Foreign Area Officer (FAO), Public Affairs Officer (PAO), Meteorology and Oceanography (METOC), Space Cadre, and Electronic Warfare (EW)—have contributed ideas that have shaped the recommendations of this paper.

The rapid technological advances that have occurred in the past 20 years have introduced the Information Domain as an enabler of all other warfighting methods and, more importantly, as a domain of combat itself. As information has become a separate domain of the battlespace, the U.S. military must develop the next generation of warfighters who can operate, fight, and win in this domain. Delivering information effects must be treated as a functional peer to delivering effects in traditional surface, subsurface, air, and shore (Naval Expeditionary Combat Command - NECC) domains.

In you'd like a copy, shoot me an e-mail and I will send you the paper.

If you own the Information Capable Warrior blog, let me know. We'd like to start populating it with useful information about the Information Dominance Corps.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

United States Naval Academy Established - 10 October 1845

By Old Fort Severn (near today’s 5th wing of Bancroft Hall), at 1100 on 10 October 1845, Commander Franklin Buchanan, USN, read his orders that established the Naval School to a complement of 50 midshipmen and seven of his staff, four of whom had been instructors and officers at the Philadelphia Naval Asylum. In 1850, the Naval School became the USNA, with a format of four years of study and seamanship training.

While the curriculum, grounds and uniforms have changed, the founding principles and commitment to moral, mental and physical development have endured for more than 160 years. The Naval Academy has adapted to the needs of the naval service. Today’s Naval Academy remains as relevant, and as important, to the Navy, to the Marine Corps and to the nation as at any time in its history.Naval Academy Alumni have always been important in the history of the United States Naval Academy. More than 76,000 men and women have graduated and gone on to be leaders dedicated to a career of naval service and have assumed the highest responsibilities of command, citizenship and government.

As we reflect on the founding of our great Academy, let us also remember our many graduates who are today serving and leading Sailors and Marines in harm’s way all over the globe, especially our active duty leadership on the front lines in Iraq and Afghanistan, and the Naval Academy graduates who make up the senior leadership that guides our military. To them we give our heartfelt thanks and support as they stand the watch to keep our nation free. To their families who keep the home fires burning, we extend our gratitude and offer the support of our entire Naval Academy family during these challenging times. Go Navy! Byron

Byron F. Marchant ‘78

((Note: Had I been worthy of admission to the USNA, 1978 would have been my class. Instead, I was OCS Class 82003 with 6 years of enlisted service credit.))

Friday, October 9, 2009

Improve Thinking In the Navy

The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read or write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn and relearn. - Alvin Toffler
Improving the quality of thinking in the Navy is crucial. If we are to improve our Navy’s ability to think, we must deal with two aspects of thinking: education and the environment. We must educate our Sailors about independent thinking. This involves making them more aware of their limitations, and teaching them to use a range of tools and techniques to encourage more divergent thinking.

Thinking techniques come from a wide variety of sources and can overcome some of the limitations we all have due to weaknesses in our brains’ construction, as well as overcoming the bad habits of thinking developed during a lifetime of exposure to education, training, social and work cultures.

Training Sailors to use these techniques is relatively easy and addresses ‘thinking’ by individuals and teams. The Navy must develop an environment that supports and encourages thinking. In many ways the environment is the most important, and difficult, challenge. If we train Sailors to use techniques that improve their thinking, but then do not support the use of those techniques within the workplace, we will fail. Changing the environment will take a long-term, consistent effort throughout the Navy.

Naval Education and Training Command–NETC should develop a ‘thinking’ approach to training. Instructors should become facilitators, coaches and mentors to students. Students should be encouraged to think more about what they are doing. If the Navy is to improve its ability to think, we must all play our part by supporting the application of thinking skills and techniques. We also need to encourage, recognize and reward good thinking.

SHAMELESSLY STOLEN FROM THE AUSTRALIAN ARMY here. It was originally Lieutenant Colonel Richard King's plea for a thinking Army. I made a few substitutions. I don't think he would mind.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Flag Officer Expertise - Information Warfare appears to be the most likely to become more important in the future

U.S. Navy officers typically rise through the ranks developing expertise in a particular area. They may be skilled at surface warfare, for example, or air or submarine warfare. When they become flag officers—officers who hold the rank of rear admiral or above—many are called on to lead and manage large Navy organizations. But do they have the complex array of skills they need to manage the Navy enterprise?

Navy leaders have become increasingly concerned that they do not. Working with the Navy’s Executive Learning Officer (ELO), the RAND National Defense Research Institute undertook a project to identify the expertise requirements of Navy flag officer positions, discover whether there is a gap in officer development, and, if so, determine the nature and size of the gap. The RAND researchers surveyed all Navy flag officers regarding the expertise required for their current positions, and they developed and ran a model that identifi ed primary and additional domain-specific skills that flag selectees would need to perform effectively in flag positions.

A review of ongoing and planned changes in Navy organization, personnel development, operational strategy, and technology suggested some areas for expertise-building. Information warfare appears to be the most likely to become more important in the future.

Furthermore, there is no evidence that the importance of any of the following traditional Navy areas of expertise will decline in the near future: surface warfare, submarine warfare, antisubmarine warfare, special warfare, expeditionary warfare, littoral warfare, intelligence, logistics and readiness, and sea basing.

From the RAND Report

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

then they gave us radios

... I would also say that the United States Navy has been no stranger to the world of networks and information and clearly as a service that relies heavily on technology, we have always had the challenge of communicating over long distances. From the first time we started going to sea and to show that I’m not exactly that far forward a thinker when it comes to cyber, one of my favorite quotes, I’ll also go back to Adm. Arleigh Burke when he said, “going to sea used to be fun and then they gave us radios.”

Some things haven’t changed, as I’ve said. But in a way, the Navy was the first to move to network operations. In fact, the first course that I attended as an ensign in the United States Navy on my way to my first ship was a course in the Naval Tactical Data System, NTDS. So even from my earliest days, we have been involved in networks and the sharing of information in an electronic medium.

We have been operating with integrated sensors and networks that bridge information and operations between our ships, our airplanes, our submarines and now our unmanned systems, guided missiles, satellites, facilities ashore and our computer networks.

Admiral Gary Roughead, Chief of Naval Operations
in an address to CSIS discussing Information Dominance

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Have a difference of opinion with the boss?- You own 'the difference'.

Naval officers put themselves at considerable risk when their vision and strategic intent are at odds with those of their boss. Some of our Navy bosses view their positions as non-negotiable. But, your having a different strategic vision than your boss may be simply a matter of degree and therefore not completely unacceptable.

Complicating the issue is that some senior leaders have an absolute unwillingness to share their vision with their subordinates. This may be the result of the senior's insecurity with their vision or even worse, their own lack of vision (i.e., they have nothing to share). Make your best effort to have good communications with the boss and do the best you can in extracting his strategic vision. Failing this, you're on your own and will have to maintain some level of self-awareness and a sensitivity to your boss's shortcomings.

Just know you are in shoal waters. Someone once said, "when you and your boss have a difference of opinion - your boss owns 'the opinion' and you own 'the difference'."

Monday, October 5, 2009

Give us Men !

Men-from every rank,
Fresh and free and frank;
Men of thought and reading,
Men of light and leading,
Men of loyal breeding,
The nation’s welfare speeding;
Men of faith and not of fiction,
Men of lofty aim in action;
Give us Men-I say again,
Give us Men!

Give us Men!
Strong and stalwart ones;
Men whom highest hope inspires,
Men whom purest honor fires,
Men who trample self beneath them,
Men who make their country wreath them
As her noble sons,
Worthy of their sires;
Men who never shame their mothers,
Men who never fail their brothers,
True, however false are others:
Give us Men-I say again,
Give us Men!

Give us Men!
Men who, when the tempest gathers,
Grasp the standard of their fathers
In the thickest fight;
Men who strike for home and later,
(Let the coward cringe and falter),
God defend the right!
True as truth the lorn and lonely,
Tender, as the brave are lonely,
Men who treat where saints have trod,
Men for Country, Home- and God:
Give us Men! I say again- again-
Give us Men!

Josiah Gilbert Holland

Sunday, October 4, 2009

An Unhappy Ad - Ouch !!

From the classifieds - "The Capital" Annapolis, Maryland's hometown newspaper


$100 OBO ($200 value) for a complete set of leadership books, including:

- Introduction to Naval Leadership
- Voices of Experience

- Leadership Embodied

- The Naval Profession

- Small Unit Leadership

- The Challenge of Command
Got passed over for Commander. *&^%# Won't be needing these.
Contact LCDR XXXXX at 410-216-XXXX.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Mentorship: A two way street

By Lt. Gen. Robert Cone, III Corps and Fort Hood Commander
October 1, 2009 | Editorial|

It’s led me to be here as the III Corps commander

During my first few hours as the III Corps commander, I had the opportunity to pass on my command philosophy to my subordinates and to the III Corps staff. I feel is it extremely important to set the tone and establish an environment of two-way communication right out of the gate.

Two-way communication is an exchange of information between a subordinate and leader. It allows each person to provide input, exchange ideas and allows the subordinate to obtain guidance and then provide feedback. Another type of relationship where this occurs is a mentoring relationship.

I’m an advocate of mentorship. I’ve been mentored many times during my career and I firmly believe it is what led me to be here today as the III Corps commander. In his article “Mentoring in the Military: Not Everybody Gets It” published in the Military Review November/December 2002, Maj. G. Joseph Kopser, special assistant to the chief of staff of the Army, spells out the role of both the mentor and the mentored. When I commanded 1st Squadron, 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment, Kopser was one of my lieutenants and is still one of my “mentorees.”

According to Kopser, there are “five steps in the lifelong learning process that officers can follow to increase the benefits mentoring can provide to their personal and professional careers.”

The first is becoming aware of your strengths and weaknesses. You must do your own internal assessment of who you are both professionally and personally before you can honestly identify what you hope to gain from and contribute to the mentoring relationship. Furthermore, in doing such an assessment, you will show sincerity. No one can possibly know everything, and as the junior member, it’s critical to understand that you have much to learn.

The second step is to understand what you would like from a potential mentor, and then seek him or her out. Much of this process is personality driven and that aspect of the relationship should be a consideration when selecting a mentor. Additionally, their unique professional background may be another consideration along with their strengths and attitudes toward mentorship.

Thirdly, once the relationship is established, work to maintain it. Show your mentor that you are interested and do the homework to keep the process going. Initiate topics of discussion, read professional literature and attend events that would enrich the development of the mentoring relationship. It is an investment for both parties. For the one being mentored, it is imperative that you do not waste your mentor’s resources – primarily his or her time. The work you do here will show your attentiveness to etiquette.

Observing mentoring rules of engagement and etiquette comprise the
fourth step. Sincerity and loyalty are essential to a mentor. Being insincere or appearing to want the relationship for purely networking advantages will only help to dissolve the relationship. The same can be said for exposing information a mentor revealed in confidence. “Loyalty maximizes sponsorship and friendship.” Also, if the mentoring relationship is no longer beneficial, it is appropriate to end it. What is learned, both negative and positive, can be applied in future mentoring relationships.

The fifth step is a transition to the role of a mentor to others. At any point in your career, you could find yourself a mentor or a protégé. Application of what was learned in previous mentoring relationships will undoubtedly advance the next one – whether that is as a mentor or protégé.

Finally, Kopser reminds us that mentorship is voluntary. While it is possible to have a successful career without it, a leader will not achieve his or her greatest potential without a senior officer recognizing their abilities. A mentoring relationship is one that is pursued from a desire to do better.

Ask yourself what you have to lose and then examine what you have to gain.
As a leader, it is your responsibility to become better than you are and to seek an improved and more effective way of doing things. On our Army team, our unique mission sets us apart from any other way of life. Mentorships can help decipher career mysteries and clarify questions you may have. It’s a relationship with those who know more than you, and that’s a relationship from which any of us can benefit.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Commander, TENTH Fleet Established

Today is an historical day. Congratulations to all the COMTENTHFLT plankowners and others involved in making this monumental event happen.

Congratulations also to Captain Justin F. Kershaw (former CO of NIOC Yokosuka, Japan) who was officially promoted to Captain today!!