TAMPA, Florida — The Special Operations Forces Industry Conference had a surprise guest on Wednesday — one that had some here scratching their heads. At a black-tie dinner following the day’s panel discussions, product displays and tech demos, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton arrived behind a phalanx of State Department and Special Operations Command security. Clinton’s presence seemed incongruous at the gaudy Tampa Convention Center packed with weary-looking commando staffers, paunchy industry reps and chipper media handlers. Special Operations Forces are a big deal, sure, but it was still just a trade show.
Archived posts from category ‘Smart Power’
In February 2006, an army of rapists descended on Duru, a farming community of 5,000 in eastern Congo. They called themselves, without a trace of irony, the “Lord’s Resistance Army.”
Every day for a week in early September, U.S. Army soldiers traveled the same 10-mile route between Kinshasa’s dilapidated Grand Hotel and the hilltop Congolese military training base overlooking the Democratic Republic of Congo capital. The Americans probably didn’t realize it, but the wide, smooth, freshly-paved avenue they used, so incongruous in a city of potholed and unpaved roads, had recently been constructed by a growing rival — China.
[kml_flashembed movie="http://www.youtube.com/v/3JkysxAYCqM" width="425" height="350" wmode="transparent" /] by DAVID AXE and JASON REICH Analysts and policy makers call it “smart power” — a seamless blend of investment, good deeds and military force that is intended to win friends while targeting enemies in war. In 2007, the U.S. Defense Department officially embraced this philosophy. But on the [...]