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CNA Talks: A National Security Podcast

CNA’s experts understand today’s complex and dynamic national security environment. On CNA Talks, you’ll find analysis of globe-shaping conflicts, foreign policy and shifting alliances, regional breakdowns, pandemics and other health crises, environmental disasters, homeland security concerns, and the future of strategic competition. Follow CNA Talks to go behind the headlines and learn from data-driven, objective, discussions on the factors shaping today’s national security landscape.
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CNA Talks: A National Security Podcast
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Now displaying: September, 2021
Sep 22, 2021

Rear Admiral Mike McDevitt (ret.) sits down with Kevin Pollpeter to discuss his book, “China as a Twenty-First Century Naval Power.” They cover topics including China’s military presence abroad, the dispute over the South China Sea, and how the U.S. can continue to support its allies in the region.

Rear Adm. Michael McDevitt (retired) is a senior fellow at CNA. During his 34-year naval career, McDevitt held four at-sea commands, including command of an aircraft carrier battle group. He spent all of his operational time in the Pacific, including a two-year assignment in Sasebo, Japan. McDevitt was Chief of Naval Operations Strategic Studies Group Fellow at the Naval War College.

Kevin Pollpeter is a research scientist in the CNA China Studies Program. He is an internationally recognized expert on China's space program and is widely published on Chinese national security issues, focusing on Chinese military modernization, China's defense industry, and Chinese views on information warfare.

Sep 8, 2021

In part two of their discussion, CNA counterterrorism experts Alex Powell and Jon Schroden sit down with James Cunningham the lead author for two comprehensive lessons learned reports published by the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR). 

They discuss some positive takeaways from the development of the Afghan National Security Forces and what lessons the U.S. government can learn from Afghanistan.

Timestamps by Topic

1:17: Were there effective approaches to developing the Afghan National Security Forces?

7:05: What lessons should the U.S. government learn from Afghanistan?

12:59: Will the U.S. government make any actionable change because of these lessons?

Guest Biographies

James Cunningham is the lead author and project lead for two comprehensive lessons learned reports published by the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction focused on reconstructing the ANDSF.  For over 16 years, James has worked Afghanistan-related issues as a member of the Intelligence community and providing independent oversight of U.S. reconstruction programming.

Jonathan Schroden is the Director of CNA's Countering Threats and Challenges Program (CTCP), whose mission is to support US government efforts to better understand and counter state and non-state threats and challenges. Schroden has deployed or traveled to Afghanistan 13 times.

Alex Powell is an expert on terrorist group tactics, counterterrorism, and special operations forces (SOF).  He has worked extensively on security issues in Afghanistan, traveling there numerous times to conduct assessments of the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces.

Additional Resources

SIGAR Website: https://www.sigar.mil/

Divided Responsibility: Lessons from U.S. Security Sector Assistance Efforts in Afghanistan, June 2019 (https://www.sigar.mil/pdf/lessonslearned/SIGAR-19-39-LL.pdf)

Reconstructing the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces: Lessons from the U.S. Experience in Afghanistan, September 2017 (https://www.sigar.mil/pdf/lessonslearned/SIGAR-17-62-LL.pdf)

Sep 1, 2021

In this episode, CNA counterterrorism experts Alex Powell and Jon Schroden sit down with James Cunningham the lead author for two comprehensive lessons learned reports published by the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR). 

They discuss the collapse of the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF) in the face of the Taliban offensive, how the Taliban were able to take territory with so little resistance and problems with how the U.S. military trained the ANDSF.

Guest Biographies

James Cunningham is the lead author and project lead for two comprehensive lessons learned reports published by the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction focused on reconstructing the ANDSF.  For over 16 years, James has worked Afghanistan-related issues as a member of the Intelligence community and providing independent oversight of U.S. reconstruction programming.

Jonathan Schroden is the Director of CNA's Countering Threats and Challenges Program (CTCP), whose mission is to support US government efforts to better understand and counter state and non-state threats and challenges. Schroden has deployed or traveled to Afghanistan 13 times.

Alex Powell is an expert on terrorist group tactics, counterterrorism, and special operations forces (SOF).  He has worked extensively on security issues in Afghanistan, traveling there numerous times to conduct assessments of the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces.

Additional Resources

SIGAR Website: https://www.sigar.mil/

Divided Responsibility: Lessons from U.S. Security Sector Assistance Efforts in Afghanistan, June 2019 (https://www.sigar.mil/pdf/lessonslearned/SIGAR-19-39-LL.pdf)

Reconstructing the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces: Lessons from the U.S. Experience in Afghanistan, September 2017 (https://www.sigar.mil/pdf/lessonslearned/SIGAR-17-62-LL.pdf)

 

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