CNA Publication Archive: 2020

December 23, 2020

This after-action report provides an independent review of the Philadelphia Police Department's (PPD) response to the mass demonstrations and civil unrest that occurred in the city from May 30 – June 15, 2020. While the findings contained in the report speak to this specific timeframe, the review team acknowledges that the response in Philadelphia (also referred to as "the City") was not unlike the law enforcement response to similar events that occurred both nationally and globally. We provide this preface as a means to better understand the Philadelphia response within a national context, and also to provide a summary of key reforms initiated by the city and PPD since the start of our review in July 2020. These reforms represent the commitment of the City's leadership and the PPD to initiate, implement and sustain organizational reform efforts concerning the management of First Amendment demonstrations, police use of force, and other resources needed to better prepare officers to meet their public safety mission.

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December 18, 2020

This report, the seventeenth in a series of biweekly updates, is part of an effort by CNA to provide timely, accurate, and relevant information and analysis of the field of civilian and military artificial intelligence (AI) in Russia and, in particular, how Russia is applying AI to its military capabilities. It relies on Russian-language open source material.

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December 17, 2020

In this CNA Occasional Paper, Leonid Nersisyan analyzes developments in Russia's combat aviation fleet from 2006 to 2019. The report provides an in-depth assessment of Russia's tactical, strategic, and army aviation forces, detailing key combat aircraft and munitions procured by the Russian Air Force and Navy. Additionally, Nersisyan discusses the ongoing modernization program, prospective fixed-wing and helicopter acquisitions, and related challenges that the fleet may face in the coming years.

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December 14, 2020

In this CNA Occasional Paper, Konrad Muzyka provides an in-depth assessment of Russia's Western Military District, which consists of robust forces spanning regions including St. Petersburg, Moscow, Kursk, and Kaliningrad. Muzyka's analysis provides an up-to-date overview of the current force structure and posture of this military district, which underwent deep structural reforms between 2013 and 2019 to better address Western threats. These forces include the 6th and 20th Combined Arms Armies, the 1st Guards Tank Army, three airborne divisions, the 6th Air and Air Defense Army, and a self-sufficient force in the Kaliningrad exclave. Muzyka also discusses the Zapad-17 military exercise, and provides assessments of ongoing modernization in the district.

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December 11, 2020

As the world continues to battle the COVID-19 pandemic, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has striven to shape the domestic and international public narratives around the crisis. Chief among its arguments are that China rose to the challenge of the outbreak and has exemplified the role of a responsible great power. At the same time, it has attempted to deflect blame for the initial outbreak by engaging in an unprecedented disinformation campaign aimed at sowing doubt over the origin of the virus. This report reconstructs the evolution of these narratives and their supporting themes, as well as the wide range of tools and tactics that Beijing has used to influence public opinion—to include diverse public messaging platforms, foreign aid efforts, and suppression of domestic dissidents. The report also examines how Beijing has attempted to use the crisis to degrade international trust in Washington by using the US response to the pandemic as a foil against which to highlight its own successes.

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December 9, 2020

The Presidential Charter for the 13th Quadrennial Review of Military Compensation directed it to estimate the number of servicemembers who qualify for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). In this study, we use the Public Assistance Reporting Information System (PARIS), which includes information on people who receive SNAP and other federal benefits, to estimate how many active component servicemembers qualify for SNAP. The data include information from participating states and represent the most authoritative data ever used to estimate servicemembers' enrollment in SNAP. After we control for anomalies that we conclude are an indication that a significant number of servicemembers in the PARIS data are no longer members of households receiving SNAP benefits, we conclude that between 0.08 percent and 0.42 percent of the approximately 1.1 million servicemembers stationed in the US are enrolled in SNAP at any point in time. For reference, approximately 9.6 percent of adults in the US age 18 to 59 were enrolled in SNAP in 2018. Junior enlisted members represent the largest number of SNAP recipients, and they are the most likely to be enrolled in SNAP. When we combine paygrade and dependents, servicemembers in paygrades E-2 to E-4 with three or more dependents are far more likely to be enrolled in SNAP than all other servicemembers. Even so, fewer than 5 percent of these servicemembers are enrolled in SNAP. The Army has the least restrictions on accessions with dependents and has accessed far more with several dependents in the past few years than the other services; its junior enlisted servicemembers are the most likely to be enrolled in SNAP. Junior enlisted servicemembers advance rather quickly, however, so it is likely that most of these members are receiving SNAP benefits for a relatively short period. Servicemembers who stopped receiving SNAP benefits were enrolled in SNAP in the same state for about 8 months.

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December 9, 2020

The 13th Quadrennial Review of Military Compensation's (QRMC)'s Presidential charter directed the QRMC to "survey the usage of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits, as well as any other supplemental sources of income or support you deem significant, by military members on active service and their families, and consider the results of the review in assessing the adequacy of overall military compensation." This guidebook describes basic eligibility criteria for SNAP; Women, Infants, and Children Program (WIC); and the subsidized school lunch program. It also contains information about how servicemember pay is treated for eligibility purposes.

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December 9, 2020

The Director of the 13th Quadrennial Review of Military Compensation (QRMC) asked CNA to determine state and District of Columbia eligibility requirements for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits, to identify which military allowances and in-kind benefits count toward eligibility, and to estimate the number of active component servicemembers who would be eligible for SNAP. We were also asked to estimate the number of servicemembers serving in the United States who would be eligible for the Family Subsistence Supplemental Allowance (FSSA) if it were reinstated for those servicemembers. We found that no servicemember without dependents would qualify for SNAP in any Military Housing Area (MHA) and that no servicemember with dependents above the paygrade of E-7 would qualify. While fewer in numbers, members who live on base and receive quarters-in-kind (that is, they do not receive Basic Allowance for Housing) are far more likely to be eligible for SNAP than their peers who have dependents and do not live on base because the in-kind benefit is not considered income for SNAP purposes. We estimate that far fewer servicemembers would be eligible for FSSA if it were made available in the United States because the value of quarters provided in-kind is imputed as income when determining eligibility for FSSA.

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December 9, 2020

The 13th Quadrennial Review of Military Compensation (QRMC) is considering whether the U.S. military should move from its current regular military compensation (RMC) structure to a single-salary system (SSS) that would eliminate the basic allowances for housing (BAH) and subsistence (BAS) and increase basic pay. To inform this potential policy change, this study provides information about: the potential advantages and disadvantages to the U.S. military of moving to an SSS; potential design features of an SSS to meet key objectives; and, important implementation challenges that the Department of Defense (DOD) may face if it goes forward with a military SSS. To provide insight into these issues, we conducted a literature review on the compensation preferences of servicemembers and civilians, a review of U.S. civilian-sector compensation practices based on a literature review and subject-matter expert (SME) discussions, and a review of foreign military compensation practices based on discussions with foreign military compensation experts and a review of policy documents.

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December 9, 2020

This report presents our findings on identifying and prioritizing the potential second- and third-order effects of the Department of Defense (DOD) moving to a single-salary system (SSS) for military compensation. We identified more than 25 potential effects in six broad areas: housing and food arrangements, retention and separation pays, changes in the dependency ratio, family and dependent benefits, income support programs, and other effects. The report provides information, for each effect, on the number of people potentially affected, budget costs, and potential risks to readiness, based on an extensive literature and policy review and conversations with subject-matter experts from across DOD and the services. We recommend that DOD undertake additional analysis in the areas of housing and food arrangements and retention and separation pays. We also recommend that DOD consider the potential effects of an SSS on military marriage rates and the dependency ratio. We provide a number of topics for further research that will help DOD think through the implications of moving to an SSS.

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December 9, 2020

The Blended Retirement System aims to increase Servicemembers' retirement savings by matching contributions to Thrift Savings Plans by up to five percent of basic pay. This new system applies to Servicemembers who entered uniformed service on January 1, 2018, or later, or to Servicemembers with early entry dates and fewer than 12 years of service who opted in to the new system during 2018. This report analyzes Thrift Savings Plan contributions by Active component Servicemembers, across Services, eligibility categories, and Servicemember characteristics. We find that age, regular military compensation, paygrade, race, and gender are all correlated to varying degrees with retirement savings rates. In particular, older and higher income Servicemembers save at higher rates. We also find substantial differences across Services in the savings patterns of auto-enrollees, suggesting differences in training or messaging. Furthermore, some Servicemembers may be saving inefficiently by reaching the annual limit on TSP contributions prior to December and thereby forgoing matching funds.

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December 9, 2020

This report considers one of the potential effects of a DOD move to a single-salary system (SSS): changes in servicemember retention driven by changes in marriage behavior. It analyzes the effects that a move to an SSS is likely to have on the percentage of servicemembers who are married and studies the changes in retention rates and force size that may be induced by any changes in marriage behavior. Our approach includes a review of the literature on the relationships between compensation, marital status, and retention; computation of pay changes under different SSS implementation scenarios; estimation of the effect of marital status on retention using personnel data; and development of a model that can forecast marriage rates and force size over time. Overall, we find that these effects are likely to be small, so there is little need for policy-makers to be concerned about these effects when considering a change to an SSS.

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December 9, 2020

If the military moves to a single-salary system (SSS), it would combine basic pay and allowances into a single, taxable compensation, with no differences regarding whether servicemembers have dependents. An SSS would mostly raise salaries for single servicemembers and reduce them for families, unless Congress substantially increased personnel outlays. We estimate a reduction in total family pay between 5 to 14 percent. Most of that reduction would come from removing tax advantages for allowances. The director of the Quadrennial Review of Military Compensation asked CNA to examine the potential effects of an SSS on the military's privatized housing. We found that an SSS would pose serious challenges to the military's privatized family housing projects because it would eliminate the Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) and reduce incomes for active-duty residents. Without BAH, all the current housing privatization agreements would require renegotiation. With reduced family incomes, the housing projects would need to decrease rents to keep their current resident demographics. We estimate the reduced rents would create aggregated annual losses to privatized housing projects of between $80 million to $210 million.

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December 4, 2020

This report, the sixteenth in a series of biweekly updates, is part of an effort by CNA to provide timely, accurate, and relevant information and analysis of the field of civilian and military artificial intelligence (AI) in Russia and, in particular, how Russia is applying AI to its military capabilities. It relies on Russian-language open source material.

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November 20, 2020

In this CNA Occasional Paper, Andrew Monaghan examines Russian military strategy. Monaghan frames an analysis of Russian military strategy in terms of sustained Russian debate about the changing character of war, especially since the mid 2010s, and how this debate has recently turned to focus on military strategy in modern conditions. It makes several key arguments. First, history permeates the contemporary Russian debate, featuring both in the way that military experience is rendered into didactic lessons of history to advance military science, and in the arc of the theoretical development of Russian military strategy—it is not possible to parse today's discussion without knowledge of this history. Second, military strategy is specifically and clearly defined in the Russian lexicon as the "highest sphere of military art," the art of higher command comprising the bridge between the theory and practice of war. Military strategy is explicitly subordinate to state policy. Third, there are constraints on military strategy, particularly in terms of the implementation of plans. Moscow's re-examination of military strategy has important implications for Western audiences. While many are focused on Moscow's measures short of war, this paper highlights the importance that the Russian military still accords the use of armed force. Moreover, it suggests the need to move beyond thinking in terms of the blurring of the lines between war and peace, to the blurring of the lines between the offensive and the defensive.

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November 20, 2020

This report, the fifteenth in a series of biweekly updates, is part of an effort by CNA to provide timely, accurate, and relevant information and analysis of the field of civilian and military artificial intelligence (AI) in Russia and, in particular, how Russia is applying AI to its military capabilities. It relies on Russian-language open source material.

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November 6, 2020

This report, the fourteenth in a series of biweekly updates, is part of an effort by CNA to provide timely, accurate, and relevant information and analysis of the field of civilian and military artificial intelligence (AI) in Russia and, in particular, how Russia is applying AI to its military capabilities. It relies on Russian-language open source material.

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October 31, 2020

In January 2017, CNA published a 300-plus page report, AI, Robots, and Swarms, that examines the conceptual, technical, and operational challenges facing the Department of Defense (DOD) as it pursues AI-based technologies. This white paper is a sequel that brings the 2017 report up to date. It begins with a brief summary of the US Federal Government's and DOD's most recent AI investments, the establishment of the Joint Artificial Intelligence Center (JAIC), and several significant AI-ethics-related events and trends. The rest of the paper is a long narrative that consists of three interwoven parts: Part One compares (and highlights the lack of consensus between) how the academic research community defines AI and how DOD defines it, provides a short history of AI, and offers two complementary views of AI, one as a categorical taxonomy of algorithms, the other as a field of scientific discovery; Part Two summarizes emerging themes and issues, discusses how the AI research community has responded to the COVID-19 pandemic (along with "lessons learned" for DOD), and concludes with evidence that suggests that AI/ML may be entering (or has already entered) an era of diminishing returns; and Part Three introduces a "template of a framework" designed to help bridge the gap between "understanding AI" and operationalizing its military applications. The appendices provide a stand-alone information resource that consists of over 20 high-resolution mindmaps organized around a variety of study-related topics: e.g., taxonomies of AI methods and algorithms; recent breakthroughs and milestones; and gaps, challenges, and limitations of basic AI research. The mindmaps, collectively, contain 800-plus embedded hot-link references.

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October 28, 2020

Seafarers are an integral, if often overlooked, workforce, people who are essential both to individual communities and to the global economy. From navies and coast guards, to commercial industries such as fishing, shipping, and tourism, a healthy and valued workforce at sea is central to global stability. The COVID-19 pandemic and its unintended side effects across the blue economy have disproportionally hit seafarers, from those lacking ready access to medical care at sea, to those suffering economic damages while stranded ashore. Port state obstacles to crew rotations, isolation due to COVID-19 social distancing guidelines, restricted shore leave, extended contracts, and erratic port state guidance directly endanger mariners' livelihoods and their mental health. The COVID-19 pandemic has underscored how readily these frontline workers can slip out of view. Mariners face immediate health risks from COVID-19 exposure, risks similar to those faced by nurses, delivery drivers, and grocery store clerks, but often serve without the dignity and resources that can come with being formally deemed essential. Yet efforts to safeguard mariners from COVID-19 differ depending on industry, in many cases with cost and risk falling squarely on the mariners themselves. What emerges from this network of interlocking risks is the need for robust action across every stakeholder group—including the public—to safeguard seafarers and society while promoting dignity and stability for a critical workforce. This policy paper, reflecting ongoing work by CNA to understand these risks to mariners, is meant to contribute to a global conversation on the risks mariners face and some of the steps necessary to protect and sustain these vulnerable workers and the societies that rely upon them.

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October 26, 2020

This issue brief is a product created through a partnership between BJA and CNA. The Using Analytics to Improve Officer Safety work examines granular incident data from 2015–2019 from several local law enforcement agencies to identify incident characteristics (characteristics specific to the incident and related to officer tactical response) associated with officer assaults, injuries, and line-of-duty deaths. Using machine learning techniques, CNA is producing a risk assessment model to link incident characteristics with officer safety outcomes. This work also entails working with participating agencies to identify best practices and recommendations to reduce risks to officer safety in the line of duty.

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October 23, 2020

This report, the thirteenth in a series of biweekly updates, is part of an effort by CNA to provide timely, accurate, and relevant information and analysis of the field of civilian and military artificial intelligence (AI) in Russia and, in particular, how Russia is applying AI to its military capabilities. It relies on Russian-language open source material.

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October 9, 2020

This report, the twelfth in a series of biweekly updates, is part of an effort by CNA to provide timely, accurate, and relevant information and analysis of the field of civilian and military artificial intelligence (AI) in Russia and, in particular, how Russia is applying AI to its military capabilities. It relies on Russian-language open source material.

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October 2, 2020

The world is in the midst of a geopolitical transition driven by the rise of China. In 2010, China became the world's second largest economy, and China is now the top trading partner with all five of the United States' treaty allies in Asia. It is the second largest trading partner with the European Union, and it is Africa's largest trading partner.1 Its defense budget is also the world's second largest, reaching $177.61 billion in 2019.2 China's rising economic and military power have led to an increased presence not only in Asia, but also globally. China's Belt and Road Initiative, a global trade and investment effort, involves countries across four continents. In an acknowledgement of China's growing accomplishments and power, Chinese leader Xi Jinping stated in October 2017 that China "has stood up, become rich, and is becoming strong.

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September 28, 2020

While social media bots have the ability to greatly affect US national security and public discourse, the current landscape of US federal and state laws regulating such bots is limited. This study explores the challenges inherent to passing social media bot-related legislation and details current efforts to do so, including at the federal and state levels. It briefly explores the context in the European Union as well. This paper then discusses the dilemmas social media companies face as they think about effective bot policies and identifies the four main categories of policies through which the social media platforms regulate the use of bots on their sites. As they face evolving threats from bots, the social media companies will continue to adapt their policies accordingly, though it remains an open question whether and to what extent these companies should regulate themselves in the face of additional pressure from Congress and the public.

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September 28, 2020

CNA initiated this study of social media bots—automated programs on social media platforms—to explore their implications for US special operations forces (SOF) and the broader national security community. This report explains social media bots and botnets, explores the threat of automation and the role of social media bots as a tool of disinformation, and introduces a taxonomy of six activities that social media bots and botnets can engage in: distributing, amplifying, distorting, hijacking, flooding, and fracturing. It then identifies likely evolutions in the near- to mid-term futures and explores the implications of those futures for SOF. The report examines opportunities and risks for SOF and concludes with examples of potential SOF use in each of the six identified social media bot and botnet activities.

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September 25, 2020

This report, the eleventh in a series of biweekly updates, is part of an effort by CNA to provide timely, accurate, and relevant information and analysis of the field of civilian and military artificial intelligence (AI) in Russia and, in particular, how Russia is applying AI to its military capabilities. It relies on Russian-language open source material.

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September 23, 2020

There is today a burgeoning discussion in the literature as to what really constitutes a "special operation," what makes the forces that conduct them "special," whether these aspects are so different from conventional military operations and forces as to warrant their own theory, and, if they do, what such a theory should be. This paper addresses an aspect of special operations that has yet to be explained adequately—the question of why special operations are conducted. The answer lies in the consideration of risk. Because policy-makers are inherently reliant upon some form of popular support to maintain their positions of power, they are also inherently averse to taking risky actions. The centrality of risk to policy decisions leads directly to this definition: special operations are unorthodox military solutions to difficult policy problems that lower the level of risk to policy-makers. This definition leads to a risk-centric theory of why special operations are conducted: if policy-makers have a difficult policy problem and they are unsatisfied with the level of risk presented by orthodox solutions or inaction, then they will choose special operations. After deriving this theory, this paper evaluates it, applies it to the raid on Osama bin Laden's compound in Pakistan, and discusses implications of the theory for the future of US special operations forces.

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September 23, 2020

Innovation is a key enabling concept in the 2018 National Defense Strategy. Not only does the US military need to continue to maintain effectiveness in military operations, but in the face of a new competitive environment, and the increasing importance of commercial technology, the US will need to practice innovation to maintain a military edge and meet national security goals. The critical role of innovation is repeated throughout the NDS. But what can the US do to pursue effective innovation? And what is innovation anyway? We examine innovation through consideration of specific military examples—both historical and contemporary—as well as examining academic literature and past CNA products addressing innovation. After developing a functional definition of innovation, we provide best practices and principles that DOD can apply in order to put innovation into practice.

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September 11, 2020

This report, the tenth in a series of biweekly updates, is part of an effort by CNA to provide timely, accurate, and relevant information and analysis of the field of civilian and military artificial intelligence (AI) in Russia and, in particular, how Russia is applying AI to its military capabilities. It relies on Russian-language open source material.

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September 3, 2020

The United States has characterized today's geopolitical environment as a "long-term, strategic competition between nations." This competition includes renewed emphasis on the role of nuclear weapons in international affairs by the nucleararmed competitors of the US—Russia, China, and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK). These adversaries view competition with the US as having a nuclear dimension that is not confined to high-end warfare. Accordingly, the US must anticipate that nuclear weapons will play a central role in a regional conflict with any of these opponents. This reality underscores the importance of preparing policy-makers to manage escalation during a conflict taking place under the nuclear shadow. The use of nuclear weapons in a war between the US and its allies and Russia, China, or the DPRK would be not only militarily significant, but would also have major political and normative consequences. Yet practical concepts for escalation management are lacking in the post-Cold War, contemporary great power context.

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September 2, 2020

The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has embarked on a campaign to shape what audiences around the world read, hear, and watch about China. This report is part of a series of reports that examine Beijing's efforts to influence the media environment in the neighboring Mekong countries—Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar, Vietnam, and Thailand. This report focuses on China's efforts to shape the information environment of its neighbor, Vietnam. In order to place China's efforts into context, this report begins by providing an overview of Vietnam's information environment—the aggregate of individuals, organizations, and systems that play a key role in shaping opinions through the dissemination of news and information. Next, this report examines each of the ways that China attempts to shape the information environment in Vietnam in order to promote its preferred narratives. This report concludes with a brief discussion of issues to consider as Vietnam's information environment—and China's footprint there—evolves.

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September 2, 2020

This document summarizes a series of five CNA reports on China's efforts to shape the information environments of Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, and Vietnam. For each country, we began by establishing a general understanding of the country's information environment—the aggregate of individuals, organizations, and systems that play key roles in shaping opinions through the dissemination of news and information—so that we could place China's efforts into context. Next, we identified key PRC narratives and examined each of the tactics, tools, and techniques that China is employing to promote those narratives to local audiences. Finally, CNA identified issues that affect the reach and resonance of China's efforts to shape the views of local audiences in each country. This document draws from the five country reports to offer broad observations about how China is attempting to influence what audiences in the region read, hear, and watch.

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September 2, 2020

The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has embarked on a campaign to shape what audiences around the world read, hear, and watch about China. This report is part of a series that examines Beijing's efforts to influence the media environment in the neighboring Mekong countries—Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar, Vietnam, and Thailand. This report focuses on China's efforts to shape the information environment of its neighbor, the Lao People's Democratic Republic (or Laos). In order to place China's efforts into context, this report begins by providing an overview of Laos' information environment—the aggregate of individuals, organizations, and systems that play a key role in shaping opinions through the dissemination of news and information. Next, we examine each of the ways that China is shaping the information environment in Laos in order to promote its preferred narratives. The report concludes with a brief discussion of issues to consider as the Laos information environment—and China's footprint there—evolves.

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September 2, 2020

The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has embarked on a campaign to shape what audiences around the world read, hear, and watch about China. This report is part of a series that assesses Beijing's efforts to influence the media environment in the neighboring Mekong countries—Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar, Vietnam, and Thailand. This report focuses on China's efforts to shape the information environment of its neighbor, Myanmar. To place China's efforts into context, this report begins with an overview of Myanmar's information environment—the aggregate of key individuals, organizations, and systems that help shape opinion by disseminating news and information. Next, the report identifies key narratives that China is promoting to audiences in Myanmar and examines each of the tactics, tools, and techniques that it is employing to do so. The report concludes with a discussion of observations regarding the effect of China's efforts and issues to watch as the Myanmar information environment—and China's footprint there—evolves.

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September 2, 2020

The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has embarked on a campaign to shape what audiences around the world read, hear, and watch about China. This report is part of a series that examines Beijing's efforts to influence the media environment in the neighboring Mekong countries—Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar, Vietnam, and Thailand. This report focuses on China's efforts to shape the information environment of its neighbor, Thailand. In order to place China's efforts into context, this report begins by providing an overview of Thailand's information environment—the aggregate of individuals, organizations, and systems that play a key role in shaping opinions through the dissemination of news and information. Next, we examine each of the ways that China is shaping the information environment in Thailand in order to promote its preferred narratives. The report concludes with a brief discussion of issues to consider as Thailand's information environment—and China's footprint there—evolves.

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September 2, 2020

The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has embarked on a campaign to shape what audiences around the world read, hear, and watch about China. This report is part of a series that assesses Beijing's efforts to influence the media environment in the neighboring Mekong countries—Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar, Vietnam, and Thailand. This report focuses on China's efforts to reach audiences in Cambodia. To place China's efforts into context, this report begins with an overview of Cambodia's information environment—the aggregate of key individuals, organizations, and systems that help shape opinion by disseminating news and information. Next, the report identifies key narratives that China is promoting to audiences in Cambodia and examines each of the tactics, tools, and techniques that it is employing to do so. The report concludes with a discussion of observations regarding the effect of China's efforts and issues to watch as the Cambodia information environment—and China's footprint there—evolves.

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September 1, 2020

In this CNA occasional paper, Dr. Katarzyna Zysk, a noted expert on Russia's strategy in the Arctic, examines the evolution of Russia's military posture in the Arctic, including current investments, training and exercises, and explores what the development trends over time can ultimately tell us about the end objectives for the revamped Russian military presence in the region. The paper clarifies the often-misleading definitions of the Russian Arctic and the competing narratives about Russian military development, and examines the expansive Russian threat perception in the Arctic as one of the primary driving forces for the regional military buildup. It discusses the roles of nuclear and nonnuclear defense and deterrence and analyses the relationship between nuclear and nonnuclear forces and missions, as well as the impact of this interaction on the shifting regional strategic equation. Finally, it identifies and systematizes key operational patterns in Russian military training and exercises in the region.

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August 28, 2020

This report, the ninth in a series of biweekly updates, is part of an effort by CNA to provide timely, accurate, and relevant information and analysis of the field of civilian and military artificial intelligence (AI) in Russia and, in particular, how Russia is applying AI to its military capabilities. It relies on Russian-language open source material.

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August 14, 2020

This report, the eighth in a series of biweekly updates, is part of an effort by CNA to provide timely, accurate, and relevant information and analysis of the field of civilian and military artificial intelligence (AI) in Russia and, in particular, how Russia is applying AI to its military capabilities. It relies on Russian-language open source material.

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August 5, 2020

Over the last 15 years, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has conducted an ambitious campaign to increase the efficacy of its external propaganda. Drawing from primary Chinese languages sources, this study identifies and traces the origins of the overarching objectives of these efforts. In addition, it outlines the concrete steps that Beijing has taken to date to strengthen Chinese foreign-directed media. Using translated professional journals, the study also analyzes how Chinese subject matter experts in their own words assess Beijing's successes and shortcomings in improving the reach and resonance of China's external propaganda. This research was conducted on behalf of the US Indo-Pacific Command's China – Strategic Focus Group in support of USINDOPACOM requirements.

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July 31, 2020

This report is part of an effort by CNA to provide timely, accurate, and relevant information and analysis of the field of civilian and military artificial intelligence (AI) in Russia and, in particular, how Russia is applying AI to its military capabilities. It relies on Russian-language open source material.

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July 27, 2020

On June 24, 2020, CNA's Strategy and Policy Analysis program hosted an on-the-record virtual event about Diego Garcia to discuss how developments in sovereignty politics could affect US and allied military basing rights around the world in an era of great power competition. The event featured Mauritius' Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Ambassador Jagdish Koonjul, CNA's vice president and general counsel, Mark Rosen, and CNA's Strategy and Policy Analysis research program director, Nilanthi Samaranayake. Ambassador Koonjul read a prepared statement expressing Mauritius' readiness to permit the US military to maintain its base on Diego Garcia if the Chagos archipelago returns to Mauritian administration. The speakers gave an overview of the current legal and diplomatic situation surrounding the Chagos archipelago and explored whether the US would or should maintain its current position in support of the United Kingdom. They also discussed the challenges and opportunities for future US cooperation with Mauritius in the Chagos archipelago.

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July 17, 2020

This report is part of an effort by CNA to provide timely, accurate, and relevant information and analysis of the field of civilian and military artificial intelligence (AI) in Russia and, in particular, how Russia is applying AI to its military capabilities. It relies on Russian-language open source material.

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July 1, 2020

This report is part of an effort by CNA to provide timely, accurate, and relevant information and analysis of the field of civilian and military artificial intelligence (AI) in Russia and, in particular, how Russia is applying AI to its military capabilities. It relies on Russian-language open source material.

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June 30, 2020

This report is a historical examination of naval integration through the lens of five case studies. The cases span 150 years of history and include US and non-US examples. From these case studies, we derived a number of findings and recommendations to support ongoing US Marine Corps efforts to integrate with their Navy partners. Our findings focus on the tactical level, and include the need for unified command, effective training and planning, and a close examination of the littoral geographic space. We recommend that II MEF's current integration efforts reflect these consistencies: Marines should continue to plan and train with their Navy partners, organize effectively, and seek advantage in the littoral space.

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June 12, 2020

This is an informal working translation into English by the CNA Russia Studies Program of the Russian Federation document "Foundations of State Policy of the Russian Federation in the Area of Nuclear Deterrence." The original Russian-language document was approved by decree N 355 of the President of the Russian Federation dated June 2, 2020, and is available at http://publication.pravo.gov.ru/Document/View/0001202006020040.

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June 12, 2020

Maritime security operations sustain and enforce the rule of law and good order at sea. Yet in an era of great power competition (GPC), do those activities support national strategy? This paper offers a structure for answering that question, placing maritime security in the context of GPC by describing competition as a function of control for the international system. The framework introduced in this paper demonstrates that maritime security is an important component of maintaining a system that benefits US security and prosperity. The framework also shows that there are two roles for maritime security in GPC—avoiding corrosion of the US-led system by great powers and avoiding corrosion caused by lesser powers. These two approaches have different implications for Navy deployment, procurement, and employment policy. Consequently, although our analysis suggests that maritime security is integral to GPC, its roles can vary, pulling resources in divergent directions according to policy priorities.

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June 1, 2020

The People's Republic of China (PRC) pursues its national security objectives through a wide variety of cross-domain activities. The PRC's legal economic statecraft activities are connected directly to China's growing military power. China's legal means of obtaining technology damages the technological superiority of the United States and its partners and allies. This report illustrates the pathways by which China legally acquires foreign technology and builds capabilities to support its national security objectives. These pathways include: (1) trade, (2) market access requirements, (3) overseas investment, and (4) the transfer of human capital. This report also identifies key challenges for the United States in countering China's efforts. First, the PRC is ambitious and adapts it economic techniques to deal with changing regulatory environments. Second, the United States has multiple "leakage points" that provide avenues for the PRC to access emerging technology. Third, China offers appealing incentives that put the US and other countries as risk of technology loss. Thus, a comprehensive strategy for technology protection is needed to address China's foreign technology acquisition.

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June 1, 2020

This report focuses on two distinct, but related topics: enlistment waivers and entry-level separations. The waiver process recognizes that some young people have made mistakes and overcome their past behavior or have had a medical condition that warrants review. A one-time incident or issue may not accurately reflect the character or potential for someone to serve. ELS length and administrative separation policies provide an orderly means to discharge those found to be unsuitable to serve. In this light, two offices within the OSD–Personnel and Readiness (the Offices of the Under Secretary of Defense for Accession Policy (AP) and Officer and Enlisted Personnel Management (OEPM)) asked CNA to evaluate the Services' policies, practices, and successes for determining suitability for service at accession (enlistment waivers) and in service (ELS length and reasons for early separation). In this second of two reports, we 1) determine the probability of, and reasons for, separation among those who access with enlistment waivers, 2) examine the arguments for and against extending ELS, as well as inconsistencies in ELS separation reasons, and 3) make recommendations.

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June 1, 2020

This study examines the Services' policies and practices for determining suitability for service at accession (enlistment waivers) and in service (entry-level separations). Prior to 2008, waiver criteria differed by Service, and no common Department of Defense (DoD) waivers existed. At that time, drug and medical Service waivers were the riskiest waivers and misconduct and dependent Service waivers were the least risky. For entry-level separations, we conclude that the establishment of entry-level status (ELS) at 180 days in 1982 was based on the accrual of veterans' benefits, not typical entry-level training (ELT) length. The Air Force and Marine Corps would like ELS to be extended past 180 days (the end of ELT was the most common length) to have more assessment time, separate the unsuitable with ease, and provide equity to all trainees. The Army section with whom we spoke does not want ELS extended because there are Service alternatives and a loss of benefits associated with any longer ELS length. We were unable to speak to Navy representatives. We assert that extending ELS to the end of ELT would be a net positive for the Services and marginally performing members, and a net negative for the Department of Veterans Affairs, states, and members who would have earned Honorable discharges, unless the latter receives eligibility determinations. In our other report, we examine the riskiness and frequency of DoD-defined waivers and also determine the predictors of early separation.

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May 13, 2020

On April 30, 2020, CNA's Strategy and Policy Analysis (SPA) program hosted an on-the-record virtual event to analyze great power competition (GPC) as a concept for US national strategy and defense planning and for what it means to compete as US policy evolves. The discussion was motivated by CNA's recent publication Great Power Relations: What Makes Powers Great and Why Do They Compete? The event, built on themes from our report, explored the implicit theoretical assumptions on which GPC is based, the strategic implications of what it means to be a great power, and the role of cooperation with competitors even in an era of GPC. The discussion took particular aim at how these issues converge in the arena of day-to-day competition. The event featured CNA analysts Dr. Joshua Tallis and Dr. David Knoll and the director of CNA's SPA program, Ms. Nilanthi Samaranayake.

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April 30, 2020

Enlisted recruiting is the heart of the All-Volunteer Force (AVF). The young men and women the Services recruit will define what the military force will look like in numbers and characteristics. Because the military is a hierarchical organization—that is, people enlist in the military as youth and advance through the ranks as they age—the Services must find recruits with the attributes that will make them successful Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, and Marines today and in the future. To sustain the volunteer military, the Services need to attract a sufficient number and quality of recruits to maintain their desired force profiles, by years of service and paygrade. For a constant enlisted force endstrength, annual military enlistments must equal annual separations. If there is an increase in the number of people who leave the Service or if endstrength increases, recruiters must work harder to achieve higher recruiting goals to make up the difference [1]. In short, a successful volunteer military begins with recruiting—the engine of the AVF. If the Services do not recruit what they need, the AVF's viability is questioned, the force is degraded, military readiness is threatened,

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April 13, 2020

This paper assesses the evolution in Russian military strategy on the question of escalation management, or intra-war deterrence, across the conflict spectrum from peacetime to nuclear war. Russia's overarching approach to deterrence, called "strategic deterrence," represents a holistic concept for shaping adversary decision making by integrating military and non-military measures. Key concepts in Russian military thinking on deterrence include deterrence by fear inducement, deterrence through the limited use of military force, and deterrence by defense. These approaches integrate a mix of strategic nonnuclear and nuclear capabilities, depending on the context and conflict scope. In a conflict, Russian escalation management concepts can be roughly divided into periods of demonstration, adequate damage infliction, and retaliation. Russian strategic culture emphasizes cost imposition over denial for deterrence purposes, believing in forms of calibrated damage as a vehicle by which to manage escalation. This so-called deterrent damage is meant to be dosed, applied in an iterative manner, with associated targeting and damage levels. Despite acquiring nonnuclear means of deterrence, Russia continues to rely on nuclear weapons to deter and prosecute regional and large-scale conflicts, seeing these as complementary means within a comprehensive strategic deterrence system. The paper summarizes debates across authoritative Russian military-analytical literature beginning in 1991 and incorporates translated graphics and tables. The concluding section discusses implications for US and allied forces.

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April 13, 2020

This report offers an overview of the main debates in Russian military thought on deterrence and escalation management in the post-Cold War period, based on authoritative publications. It explores discussions by Russian military analysts and strategists on "regional nuclear deterrence," namely the structure of a two-level deterrence system (regional and global); debates on "nonnuclear deterrence" and the role of strategic conventional weapons in escalation management; as well as writings on the evolution of damage concepts toward ones that reflect damage that is tailored to the adversary. Russian military thinking on damage informs the broader discourse on ways and means to shift an opponent's calculus in an escalating conflict. The report concludes with summaries of recent articles that reflect ongoing discourse on the evolution of Russia's strategic deterrence system and key trends in Russian military thought on escalation management.

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April 1, 2020

The services commit a considerable amount of resources to retention policy levers, including a variety of reenlistment bonuses for both officers and enlisted personnel. To oversee the resources supporting these levers, the services must understand the current retention environment, both in aggregate and for specific subsets of servicemembers, since retention incentives can target certain communities. This paper discusses the retention dashboard that CNA developed for the Office of the Undersecretary of Defense (OSD) Personnel and Readiness (P&R) that allows users to view recent active component enlisted retention trends in each of the services. We discuss our choice of retention metrics, identify the data that we used, and provide guidance on using the dashboard. We conclude with a discussion of a potential future extension of the dashboard that incorporates predictive capabilities. Future extensions also could add the reserve component and/or the officer corps.

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March 10, 2020

On June 17 and 18, 2019, CNA held a two-day workshop entitled "Views of China's Presence in the Indian Ocean Region." This workshop aimed to assess the reaction to China's economic and military activities of IOR stakeholders from a wide range of IO littoral countries, as well as external countries with stakes in the IOR. This paper synthesizes the insights gained from presentations, workshop discussion, and participant papers prepared for this workshop.

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February 27, 2020

The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has embarked on a campaign to shape what audiences around the world read, hear, and watch. The purpose of this report is to provide a practical framework for identifying Beijing's efforts to influence the global media environment and placing them into context.

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January 30, 2020

What does great power competition mean and why might it be happening? This paper deconstructs those questions to take a deeper look at what makes powers great and how various explanatory frameworks within international relations scholarship predict great power interaction under different conditions. The intention here is to pull the critical assumptions built into policy documents and senior leader statements to the forefront, facilitating dialogue on a rapid and dynamic shift in US national security focus. In other words, this paper is designed to explore the most critical features of emerging strategic documents, the "what" and the "why" of great power competition.

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