As editor of Proceedings, you had better like every issue the magazine team produces, or you should go home. This issue, the fourth in my second tour as editor, is one the Proceedings team is particularly impressed with for the broad range of topics addressed and the quality of the contributions of authors, who clearly understood the spirit of CNO Admiral John Richardson’s challenge in the June issue to “Read, Write, Fight.”
On the cyber front, we have the winning essay in the Cyber Essay Contest sponsored with Hewlett Packard Enterprise. We received 71 essays in this contest. In addition, a “Now Hear This” and one of the “Nobody Asked Me, But . . .” columns address cyber-related issues.
The Marine Corps is well represented in this issue. We are publishing the first General James N. Mattis Professional Writing Award. This award is presented to the author of the best paper submitted at the Expeditionary Warfare School. The author of this issue’s contribution articulates the need for a counter-unmanned aircraft system. Another Marine addresses the challenges Marine aviation currently faces. In addition, three Marine officers in one of our “Professional Notes” describe the response team the Marines have poised to meet contingencies in Africa.
Three authors—a fleet commander, a former amphibious ready group commander, and a surface warfare officer who has commanded a patrol coastal squadron and the USS Michael Murphy (DDG-112)—in the face of the Navy’s pivot to address high-end warfare and near-peer competitors, remind us of the contributions the littoral combatant ships (LCSs) and patrol craft (PCs) bring to the Navy and the nation.
The third Sea Service is represented by a Coast Guard author’s suggestion that his service can be a card the United States might play with China that could bring the two nations together to address a common threat.
Two “Specials” break up coverage of current issues and remind us of the naval profession’s rich traditions and history. Steve Coonts, author of Flight of the Intruder (Naval Institute Press, 1986) and 36 other books, shares how he became the best-selling author he is in “Intruder Returns.” In a second “Special,” two members of the commissioning crew of the USS Arleigh Burke (DDG-51) celebrate the ship’s 25th anniversary and the man for whom the ship and the class are named.
If after these previews of this content, we have not piqued your interest, check other features in this issue on the following: use of existing tools to prevent sexual assault in the Navy; how far should we go with artificial intelligence?; are tight maintenance and operating schedules trumping real readiness?; how to motivate sailors to be physically fit; inside stories on the successes of USNI News and the Naval Institute’s essay contests; and reviews of books important to naval professionals and others who believe in the Institute’s mission “to provide a forum for those who dare to read, think, speak and write. . . .”
Finally, the Proceedings team over the years in this editor’s experience has read thousands of leadership essays and articles. Proceedings has published hundreds of these contributions—from Arleigh Burke to James Stavridis. This month’s Leadership Forum, “Identity, Passion & Service Are the Pillars of Leadership,” tied for third place in the 2015 Leadership Essay Contest. Still, for the Proceedings team, this essay is one of the most compelling. We commend it to you.
Fred H. Rainbow
Life Member since 1976