Russia is a formidable adversary that is currently undergoing transformative modernization. Its combat proficient force has inculcated lessons learned from recent combat operations in Syria, Crimea, and eastern Ukraine; selectively invested in niche capabilities (e.g., autonomy, robotics, and artificial intelligence) to add precision strike to its already formidable fires, enhance decision making, augment combined arms formations and logistics support, and safeguard its Soldiers; and professionalized to a more balanced ratio of contract to conscript Soldiers. A master of information confrontation, Russia employs cyber, information operations, and disinformation to offset any conventional force asymmetries. Above all, Russia remains a persistent, vice a declining power!
Army Mad Scientist interviewed the following four world-class SMEs about our near peer threat to learn How Russia Fights:
Ian Sullivan serves as the Senior Advisor for Analysis and ISR to the Deputy Chief of Staff, G-2, at the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC G2). This is a Tier One Defense Intelligence Senior Level (DISL) position. He is responsible for the analysis that defines and the narrative that explains the Army’s Operational Environment, which supports integration across doctrine, organization, training, materiel, leadership and education, personnel, facilities, and policy. Mr. Sullivan is a career civilian intelligence officer, who has served with the Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI); Headquarters, U.S. Army Europe and Seventh Army, Deputy Chief of Staff, G-2 (USAREUR G2); and as an Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) cadre member at the National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC). Prior to assuming his position at the TRADOC G2, Mr. Sullivan led a joint NCTC Directorate of Intelligence (DI)/Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), Counterterrorism Mission Center (CTMC) unit responsible for WMD terrorism issues, where he provided direct intelligence support to the White House, senior policymakers, Congress, and other senior customers throughout the Government. He was promoted into the Senior Executive ranks in June 2013 as a member of the ODNI’s Senior National Intelligence Service, and transferred to the Army as a DISL in January, 2017. Mr. Sullivan is also a frequent and valued contributor to the Mad Scientist Laboratory.
Katerina Sedova is a Research Fellow at Georgetown’s Center for Security and Emerging Technology (CSET), where she works on the CyberAI Project. Most recently, she advised SEN Maggie Hassan on cybersecurity and technology policy issues and drafted key legislation as a TechCongress fellow with the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee. Previously, she published research and advised projects on disinformation, state-sponsored information operations and OSINT for the NATO Strategic Communications Center of Excellence, the Department of State, and the Department of Defense. She started her career at Microsoft, where she led engineering teams in the security, networking, and performance components of the internet browsing platform. She was named as an inventor on multiple patents awarded to Microsoft. Ms. Sedova is a proclaimed Mad Scientist, having participated in our AI Speeding up Disinformation panel discussion during the Mad Scientist Weaponized Information Series of Virtual Events last year.
Sam Bendett is an Adviser with CNA’s Strategy, Policy, Plans and Programs Center (SP3), where he is a member of the Russia Studies Program. He is also an Adjunct Senior Fellow at the Center for a New American Security (CNAS). His work involves research on the Russian defense and technology developments, unmanned and autonomous military systems and AI, as well as Russian military capabilities and decision-making during crises. He is a Member of CNA’s Center for Autonomy and Artificial Intelligence, and a proclaimed Mad Scientist, having contributed multiple insightful blog posts to the Mad Scientist Laboratory, and presented informative topics during a number of Army Mad Scientist webinars and conferences. He is also a Russian military autonomy and AI SME for the DoD’s Defense Systems Information Analysis Center.
Andrea Kendall-Taylor is a Senior Fellow and Director of the Transatlantic Security Program at the CNAS. She works on national security challenges facing the United States and Europe, focusing on Russia, authoritarianism and threats to democracy, and the state of the Transatlantic alliance. Prior to joining CNAS, Ms. Kendall-Taylor served for eight years as a senior intelligence officer. From 2015 to 2018, she was Deputy National Intelligence Officer for Russia and Eurasia at the National Intelligence Council (NIC) in the ODNI. In this role, Ms. Kendall-Taylor led the U.S. Intelligence Community (IC) strategic analysis on Russia, represented the IC in interagency policy meetings, provided analysis to the National Security Council, and briefed the DNI and other senior staff for White House and international meetings. Prior to joining the NIC, Ms. Kendall-Taylor was a senior analyst at the CIA where she worked on Russia and Eurasia, the political dynamics of autocracies, and democratic decline. Ms. Kendall-Taylor is an adjunct professor at Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service.
In our interview with the aforementioned SMEs, we explore how Russia fights, addressing unmanned and autonomous systems, maneuver warfare, special operations, cyber warfare, information operations, proxy forces, and more! The following bullet points highlight key insights from our interview:
Stay tuned to the Mad Scientist Laboratory for our next episode of The Convergence podcast featuring SMEs from CNA, CNAS, Georgetown University’s CSET, and TRADOC G-2 discussing our pacing threat and exploring How China Fights, to include intelligentized warfare, maneuver, fires, information operations, cyber, and more!
National Security Innovation Network (NSIN) is a problem-solving network in the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) that adapts to the emerging needs of those who serve in the defense of our national security. NSIN is dedicated to the work of bringing together defense, academic, and entrepreneurial innovators to solve national security problems in new ways. Trish Martinelli, At-Large Director, NSIN, is an accomplished Senior Intelligence professional with a strong background in business, applicable analysis, and a keen sense of how to implement innovative planning in support of customer satisfaction. With more than 25 years in Government, Military, Analytical, Middle East, Special Missions and Operations Expertise, she is adept and experienced in working with people of diverse backgrounds to maximize the benefit from relevant experience. David Schiff, At-Large Director, NSIN, is working to change the culture of the DoD and Federal Government to favor innovation as a strategic advantage and strengthen the relationship between civilian industry and the Government to solve the world’s biggest problems. He seeks to bridge the gap that has developed between these ecosystems by building more collaborative, higher-trust, more empathetic, and creative environments, which will lead to the innovative solutions we need to ensure a better world for future generations. In this episode, Ms. Martinelli and Mr. Schiff discuss innovation, the value of hackathons and crowdsourcing in harnessing the Nation’s intellect to benefit National Security, and integrating their programs in support of U.S. Army innovation. The following bullet points highlight key insights from our interview: The DoD has created a series of innovation organizations. Each of these organizations has specific priorities tailored to the mission of the branch that oversees it. NSIN, however, serves as an innovation catalyst for the entire DoD, seeking to serve each ...
In today’s podcast, Major Rob Slaughter discusses Platform One (P1), an official DoD DevSecOps Enterprise Services team. P1’s vision is to create an innovative, collaborative, and unified Defense Department that delivers freedom through continuous software integration and deployments. Its mission is to guide, empower, equip, and accelerate DoD program offices and weapon systems through their DevSecOps journeys by: Helping to deploy mission code to the Warfighter quickly and securely. Accelerating deployment capabilities by providing an 85% solution to jump start coding. Providing a common code base for reusability. Creating a collaborative environment to break down silos and enable government-wide cross-functionality. The following are highlights from our interview with Major Slaughter: Platform One solves two simultaneous DoD problems, usually seen as polar opposites: – DoD systems are not secure enough. – DoD struggles to quickly deliver software capabilities. The current limitation on software is the age of our systems. The average USAF aircraft is older than our airmen. The future is “everything software,” but to realize this future, we will need new hardware. An AI beat an F-16 pilot in air-to-air combat, but that same F-16 could not incorporate that AI onboard without major hardware upgrades. The “everything software” future means every Soldier and Civilian should be able to write software wherever they are. The greatest immediate potential is with the new Space Force, as 100% of their fight will be through a console. Mobility is an enabling trend — being able to access the necessary software tools and work with agility in any environment. In this future, the #1 risk to combat systems is software. Rapid software development and accreditation, and sharing what works across the force is critical to mission success. Platform One can be the “Easy button”– ...
In this latest episode of “The Convergence,” we talk with Keith Law, Senior Baseball Writer at The Athletic, which he joined in January 2020 after spending thirteen and a half years at ESPN. Before joining ESPN.com in June 2006, Keith spent just over four years as the Special Assistant to the GM of the Toronto Blue Jays, and prior to that had written for Baseball Prospectus. Keith Law is the author of Smart Baseball: The Story Behind the Old Stats That Are Ruining the Game, the New Ones That Are Running It, and the Right Way to Think About Baseball, published in April 2017; and The Inside Game: Bad Calls, Strange Moves, and What Baseball Behavior Teaches Us About Ourselves, published in April of this year. In today’s podcast, Keith Law discusses the parallels between baseball and the Information Environment, how stats skew our thinking, and the implications of anchoring bias: The brain develops cognitive biases to manage extensive information. These biases lead information consumers to draw false conclusions and ignore conflicting data. Anchoring bias occurs when the brain latches onto the first piece of information, even if it is irrelevant to what you are working on. Creating radical change in a large, traditional organization, like the Army or a sports team, is best done through an individualized grassroots effort. Radical change, especially from people new to the organization, does not usually “win hearts and minds.” Information environments are full of persistent yet harmful beliefs. These need to be addressed, as those with these beliefs are often more aggressive about promoting their viewpoints. “Credibly foolish beliefs” benefit from a "first mover" advantage. These irrational narratives are rarely challenged by ...