hankrules2011

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Posts Tagged ‘military’

ID Cards and Certificates for Some of My Zillion Professional Organizations

Posted by Scott Holstad on October 23, 2019

I want to try to blog more, but my health is very poor and I’m horribly busy, largely trying to buy a house in another region of the country and get us moved — all remotely. It’s been far more time consuming and labor intensive than I anticipated, it’s wearing me out and not leaving me time for much more. But I actually have taken quite a few pictures over the past few months, so I thought it might be fun — for me at least — to post some picture blogs! Most of you still looking at this blog probably didn’t notice the new Page I created a few months ago titled “PROFESSIONAL ORGANIZATIONS” and listed as one of the menu items at the top of this page. You can find it here. I know most people probably wouldn’t be interested in a topic like that, but a couple of the things that I think make it pretty cool are A) I belong to a Zillion, as the title of this blog post states. Actually, not that many, but currently over 40, and if you were to count the number I did belong to at one point and have left, it would be over 55 easily. And there are some interesting things about this stat. For one thing, they are very varied in the fields they represent, so I’m betting not many people out there are members of such a huge variety of professional organizations, let alone such a crazy huge number. Another interesting fact is many are very hard to get into, very specialized, and have high to insanely high educational, work experience, experience levels and years and so forth requirement for consideration, and a good number of them vett applicants, which can last anywhere from a couple of days to a couple of weeks to over a month. Some of these organizations reject the majority of their applicants. And then the other main point I think is pretty cool is that B) I haven’t initiated applying to all of these or even many of these. For quite a few, I was invited to apply or even invited to join! Why? Sometimes it made sense and other times it beat the hell out of me! But it’s still a bit of a compliment, so while I actually do NOT join every organization I’ve been recruited for (including two pretty famous and influential ones I may mention later), I do try to join ones I wouldn’t normally think I’d be qualified for if they represent my interests, official or unofficial experience, etc.

Anyway, you can find the list of most of the professional organizations of which I’m currently a member at the top of my blog site along the header menu, the far one on the right, titled PROFESSIONAL ORGANIZATIONS. But that’s not the purpose of this post. Remember I said I was hoping to do a few picture blog posts? Well, this is one. Some of these organizations may be viewed as a little more “professional” than others, and as a result, some of them send or provide you a Member ID Card and/or a certificate for framing, some of which are quite nice, while others are simply paper you print out and they’re cheap looking. One organization even sends an attractive metal medallion of some sort, although for the life of me, I’ve never figured out why. It’s not a pin, you can’t wear it, what can or are you supposed to do with it? But I actually like it, so I’m not complaining. When I decided to do this, I was going to try to put the photos of the cards and certificates in alphabetical order to mirror the list on the webpage, but I really don’t have the time to devote to that, so I’m just going to place them on this blog post I think in alphabetical order of their acronyms rather than the official organization name, but I’ll try to provide sufficient identification so you’ll know what they are as you see them. (And I may put a couple of screenshots of a profile or something I have on an organization’s site rather than a member ID card or certificate.)

 

 

 

American Association of Political Consultants (AAPC) – the top half of my web directory profile page

 

AAPC

 

 

 

 

American Counseling Association (ACA) Member Certificate

 

 

American Counseling Association (ACA) Member ID Card

 

 

 

 

 

Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) Professional Member Certificate

 

 

 

Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) Professional Member ID Card

 

 

 

 

 

 

Armed Forces Communications & Electronics Association (AFCEA International) Member ID Card (Front & Back)

 

 

 

 

American Foreign Service Association (AFSA) – Upper section of my profile on the organization’s website

 

 

 

 

 

A screenshot from The AllHumanity Group‘s Network website in which I was welcomed to the group some years ago

 

 

 

 

ASIS International Member ID Card

 

 

 

ASIS International Member Logo

 

 

Espionage Research Institute International (ERII) Member Certificate

 

 

 

Espionage Research Institute International (ERII) Member Medallion (Front)

 

 

 

Espionage Research Institute International (ERII) Member Medallion (Back)

 

 

Foreign Policy Association (FPA) Membership Webpage Header

 

 

 

 

IEEE: The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Member Certificate

 

 

 

 

Aerospace and Electronic Systems Society (AESS) Member Certificate

 

 

Computational Intelligence Society (CIS) Member Certificate

 

 

Nuclear & Plasma Sciences Society (NPSS) Member Certificate

 

 

 

Power & Energy Society (PES) Member Certificate

 

 

 

 

Robotics & Automation Society (RAS) Member Certificate

 

 

 

Systems, Man, & Cybernetics Society (SMC) Member Certificate

 

 

 

Society on Social Implications of Technology (SSIT)  Member Certificate

 

 

 

IEEE Member ID Card

 

 

 

Institute of Industrial & Systems Engineers (IISE) Senior Member ID Card

 

 

Internet Society Member ID Card

 

 

 

Framed, Hung ISACA Member Certificate

 

 

 

50 Year Anniversary ISACA Member Certificate

 

 

ISACA Bronze Member ID Card

 

 

Information Systems Security Association (ISSA) Member ID Card

 

 

 

There are a few others not mentioned on my blog Page, and obviously I am missing member ID cards or certificates from quite a few that are listed. One reason, though, is that a number of these organizations, some of which I’ve been a member of for decades such as Usenix, no longer produce member ID cards, although I have many of my old ones from previous decades and I have Usenix member ID cards for myself for the last four years before the turn of the century! So I’m about to finish this idiotic post that no one will read or care about, but I’ve had fun putting it together, by posting a few screenshots while leaving many more unposted from my very large profile on a site that used to be called ExecuRanks, but which changed its name to AdvisoryCloud a couple of years ago. I was invited to become a member and while there is an annual charge for most people, I was not required to pay it. Since I was in the process of doing some consulting and had been thinking about getting a seat on an advisory board again somewhere, I decided to join (because I have actually declined invitations, although it probably seems hard to believe), put together a profile, have a public listing and see if anything would happen. Unfortunately, almost immediately after, my poor health took a serious nosedive, getting progressively worse ever since, and I’ve been forced to turn down numerous opportunities, some of which would have been great, such as being asked to join the advisory board of an Australian cryptocurrency startup, collaborate on a technical security paper with a Ukrainian security expert for a large circulation European security publication, engage in research, experiments, publication of findings with a US nuclear entity doing some cutting edge research and work, help a university “rebrand” itself and much more, as well as sadly having to cancel or turn down an unreal number of speaking engagements, ranging from everything from being a featured speaker at a major university’s graduate MBA program in which I was asked to give a presentation on entrepreneurship to speaking at a well known annual security conference on cloud technology security to a UN NGO on the topic of successfully accomplishing one of the UN’s official SDGs before 2030 to being asked to speak on sustainability at a well known annual international science conference in Paris and more. Serious disappointment! I’ve also had to cancel trips to various conferences and conventions around the country, in places like Atlanta, Huntsville, Washington DC, Baltimore, Charleston SC and Los Vegas, among others. And finally, I’ve had to consistently turned down repeated requests to provide me with VIP passes to serve as a visible SME at conferences and conventions throughout the country, ranging from Atlanta to Nashville to Knoxville to Washington DC to New York City to Baltimore to Las Vegas to Los Angeles, as well as repeated invitations to be a guest at conferences located elsewhere, such as England, Poland, Switzerland, Australia, South Korea and more. Most of these would have involved compensation plus expenses. Bitterly disappointing, I have to say. Finally, a couple of somewhat humorous and somewhat odd situations. Two organizations have tried fairly hard to recruit me with my either refusing or not agreeing to commit for an indefinite period of time. One is the Freemasons, where over a period of several years, I was approached by three members of various ranks, all of whom attempted to persuade me, and the second was especially odd. Most of us have heard of, if not being pretty familiar with the historic Knights Templar, and while history tells us the group was outlawed with its members hunted down, and tortured and killed by the Inquisition even though these Christian knights had dedicated their lives to guarding pilgrims on their way from Europe to the Holy Lands, as well as having to fight numerous, gruesome battles with a variety of Muslim groups surrounding the area. There are confirmed, documented historical reasons why they were banned, but I won’t go into that here. Suffice it to say that many people believe them to be a part of the past while many believe a good deal of them survived and fled to other countries, especially Finland, England and Scottland, and depending on which conspiracy theory you read, either have survived under the radar all these centuries while wielding tremendous influence behind the scenes (as well as the belief they still hold a huge fortune, as well as the Holy Grail and the Ark, etc…, the second two being solely rumor) to their descendants being one or both the Freemasons (and there is a lot of evidence to support that theory) to the Illuminati, where this is not nearly as much evidence, aside from the fact that many members of that group were also Freemasons, which was allegedly linked to the Templars, so there you are! And while the Freemasons have survived and thrived all these centuries (our first president was one, as were many of the other Founding Fathers), the Bavarian Illuminati was banned 10 years after it was formed and its members were hunted down throughout Germany, so naturally conspiracy theorists believe a number of them escaped, fled elsewhere, with a certain number eventually making their way to America. Where they united with former German colleagues to form the Skull & Bones fraternity at Yale, which is a whole different story and conspiracy theory that is huge enough to fill many books and which I won’t get into. The point is this: there is little tangible evidence to conclude or confirm the Templars A) remain in existence while under the radar for centuries or B) ever made it to the US. Nonetheless, there has been such historical international obsession with the order, that for centuries, publications have appeared about them, books have been written, and even movies made (The DaVinci Code with Tom Hanks is one of them) because a whole lot of people believe or want to believe this group still exists. For whatever reasons. And the irony is, there ARE current organizations claiming heritage of and the right to use the name for their organization, and while they no longer are actual “knights,” they typically maintain the same original goals concerning Christians in the Middle East, aiding others, and much more. And the largest and most visible such organization that asserts it is the only group with the historical right to the name “Knights Templar” is OSMITH. This international organization is called “OSMTH,” which is an acronym for The Sovereign Military Order of the Temple of Jerusalem, headquartered in Europe with some 5,000 members around the world, and its US branch called The Sovereign Military Order of the Temple of Jerusalem (SMOTJ). OSMITH is a registered UN NGO with many privileges, great influence, and as just one example, it is one of the few entities allowed to vote on winners of the Nobel Prize every year. The majority of its members are retired general and admirals from countries around the world, with several others who are high ranking commercial or national governmental leaders and heads of state. It is invite-only, and few are admitted. So I was incredibly surprised when over the past year or two, two different high ranking individuals approached me about possibly joining, and one of them was so ardent a recruiter of me, that he assured me privately that if I wanted in, I would get admitted! WTH??? That’s incredibly bizarre, although also strangely flattering. I never committed, wanted time to mull it over because A) I’m not sure I can commit to what they ask of their members in terms of service, and B) I don’t know if I share the same values and goals of the organization. However, I’m still in touch with the second in command in Europe so I guess if I did decide I wanted to be a member, I could simply contact him and discuss it and I guess it would happen. I had to include this bit, because these recruitments were so unexpected, so unlikely, so ardent, with so many possible implications that it kind of blew my mind.

So now that I rambled like an idiot and got off track, I’m going to finish this post up by posting a few screenshots of the top main portion of my AdvisoryCloud profile. The actual size of it contains informaton documenting education, employment, specializations, and various credentials and notices of SME in various subjects and it is so long, printing out the profile results in about 7-8 pages with the majority being the information I just mentioned. But I don’t want to post all of that because even I would be bored, so I’m just going to post screenshots of my main profile description to amuse you and make you giggle. And if anyone out there does or did read this, A) I’m grateful to you, B) I hope you found it at least mildly interesting or entertaining and C), you have a very high pain tolerance level. LOL! Thanks and cheers to all. The last few photos are from my AdvisoryCloud profile, as mentioned.

 

 

 

Partial Screenshot of my AdvisoryCloud Profile

 

 

 

 

A couple of examples of some credentials from my AdvisoryCloud Profile

 

 

 

My only “Business”-type photo, which is displayed on my AdvisoryCloud Profile

 

 

The first (top) main part of my AdvisoryCloud Profile

 

 

The remainder of the main part of my AdvisoryCloud Profile

 

Go ahead and laugh. It’s okay and I won’t be angry. While everything here is true, it admittedly seems bizarre and not totally believable to everyone, I would imagine, but I can back all of this up, so odd or not, it’s accurate. But you can still snicker. LOL!

 

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Nuclear Proliferation Coming Down The Road…

Posted by Scott Holstad on September 3, 2019

(Non)proliferation. For the past 60+ years, the US has led the world in arguing for nonproliferation and with the NPT some decades ago and a lot of diplomacy to go with it, virtually every country in the world signed it. The few that didn’t were known or thought to have nuclear weapons and these were termed “illegal.” Many people know that. What some might not know is that leading Australian figures (I’ve meant to write about this for months.) are now suggesting the unthinkable: withdraw from the NPT and go nuclear. Bad enough, but now we also have India’s defense minister (who happens to be one of my contacts) publicly stating “that New Delhi might change its ‘no first use’ policy on nuclear weapons.” With the current geopolitical situation, I get it, I do. But in a very short time, we’re going from nine nuclear countries, some NFU, to potentially two more nuclear countries while one existing country debates changing their NFU policy. While not a total surprise, considering the efforts the US has made for over half a century, it’s a little surreal to see such things happening.

Feel free to read the following article: “India hints at changing ‘no first use’ nuclear policy.”

 

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Leaving LinkedIn. Hopefully Some New & Diverse Blog Posts Here…

Posted by Scott Holstad on September 3, 2019

I am coming to the conclusion I may finally terminate my LinkedIn account after 15 years there. There are a number of reasons and it both pains and saddens me, but I see no viable alternative. I’ve worked hard over 15 years to build the largest very high-quality network on the platform, and by most accounts, I did pretty well. I have 19,910 followers at the moment (really wanted to reach 20K very badly), of whom about 55% are senior execs and some 40% C-level execs, and in every industry that exists in over 160 countries, at the highest levels of commerce, government, military, science, etc. But for some reason — and I have my theories — after being a huge ambassador for LI for a decade and a half, they turned on me last year — and I’m a PAYING customer! — and started to arbitrarily and punitively harass and “punish” me for alleged rule violations that tens of millions of people do everyday but on a far worse basis than I ever did, and with the company’s full knowledge and blessing. And for a year, I’ve interacted with these customer service pukes and it’s like talking to a damn brick wall! They refuse to respond to anything I say, assert, allege, ask, to send me to colleagues or supervisors or even their Legal department, to defend their blatant hypocrisy in their absurdly inconsistent enforcement of alleged rules they continually cite, but which are not at all on one document they cite and it’s hidden beneath generic links on the other they cite, so no one could ever find it, and they just robotically intone the same idiot sentence or two repeatedly, regardless of my question, assertion, statement, topic, allegation, etc. It’s like they’re brain dead zombies! I have a lot more to say, but this wasn’t originally going to be my topic, so I’ll end this part. Suffice it to say though that I’ve NEVER been this stonewalled, this ignored, this shit on by any company in the world and I think it speaks very ill of them, especially since they’re lying hypocrites. I expected more from a company such as theirs. If I still had my health, time, energy, strength, stamina and the money I once had before my medical bills decimated it, I would literally sue them — and I would win! I’ve never lost a lawsuit and I’ve sworn to go to my grave with that record intact. I’m confident it wouldn’t be too hard to prove my allegations against them, and despite what their terms say in regards to litigation damage maximums, a good attorney will get around that, and I would be looking for millions….

In any event, I often post links to interesting articles on a variety of topics there, and I often add my own commentary or thoughts or opinion. And sometimes I’ll just write a much longer independent article, again about various topics. Some of my posts don’t get too many views, but many get quite a few, and some get a large number. I posted about the Capital One Hacker a few days ago and got about 650 views. Then I posted about how the DoD has banned military personnel from using CBD, even though it’s federally legal in all 50 states. That one got closer to 2,000 views. Some of my posts have exceeded 15,000, 20,000+ views, but those are rare. And it’s always hard to predict which ones people will find interesting.

The point of all of this rambling that as I take several days to extracate myself from LinkedIn, I may stop posting pieces there and start posting them here. I don’t have a fraction of the followers or readers, but that doesn’t matter. I post on things I find interesting and hope others will too. If they don’t, they don’t. If they do, they’re definitely welcome.

Cheers!

Scott

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Book Review: Losing Military Supremacy: The Myopia of American Strategic Planning

Posted by Scott Holstad on May 4, 2019

Losing Military Supremacy: The Myopia of American Strategic PlanningLosing Military Supremacy: The Myopia of American Strategic Planning by Andrei Martyanov
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I have to admit I bought this book because the title and premise were intriguing, matching some of my own concerns about the recent, current and future state of the US military. But, wow, what a crazy scenario! I’m prepared to listen to and accept criticism regarding much about our military, particularly the state and status of many of our frontline weapons, a number of which are largely obsolete now, or have never been produced after throwing hundreds of billions away because of scope creep and countless other issues. Legitimate stuff, and some criticisms I’ve been making for years. And there are many reasons for this, which could probably fill a number of books. Fair enough.

What I did NOT like about this book was the author’s continual comparisons between US weapons and modern Russian weapons, ALWAYS gloating over Russian superiority, boasting how their navy could crush our navy like sardines, citing the fact that our most recent nuclear subs are, largely, ancient while Russia just produced eight new “state of the art” nuclear subs with “superior, world class” technology, apparently any one of which has such Superman-like powers, it could completely demolish our entire military in one shot, followed by wiping out the US with a second. Serious superiority issues, and a real attitude problem.

Okay, I lived through much of the Cold War. I’ve heard enough Commie propaganda over the decades, whether Soviet, Chinese, North Korean, Cuban, North Vietnamese, etc, AS WELL as most of the Arab hardliners like Saddam and Libya’s and Syria’s typical leaders, among many more, and the boasting, bragging and chest thumping is something that any two bit junior college analyst could identify, define, etc, and moreover, ultimately, with many of these loud mouths, some put their money where their mouth is, and some are total bullshitters, witness Saddam, most of the traditional 20th century Arab powers, the beloved Kims, etc. And, yes, the Russians, because as has been found out in most military encounters between many US advanced weapons vs Soviet advanced weapons, typically through proxies, the Soviets have usually had their asses handed to them. And their house came crumbling down, the giant threat a house of cards. So I take it with a grain of salt when a RUSSIAN analyst starts boasting about how their few new ships could take out all of America’s, for all intents and purposes, and I’d love to see the author, via Putin, try to put their money where their mouth is.

Which is not to say his criticism of the reductions in our military personnel, our loss of experience in crucial areas, such as nuclear, our lack of producing virtually any new world class advanced weaponry since the Cold War, at least in quantity, isn’t entirely legitimate. It’s just his snarky and frankly very odd and suspicious personal circumstances as a person and professional that make this book and it’s whole “my penis is bigger than yours” infantile attitude so damn bizarre and frustrating! He’s a Russian, was in their navy, left Russia, immigrated to America, became an American citizen and somehow found gainful, if unspecified, employment with some unnamed … US defense contractor, I believe, possibly working on US weaponry, presumably naval. Now, think about that. The US lets some Russian ex-naval vet immigrate to America, magically become a US citizen, and then let him have freaking clearance to do defense work for our damn military??? Since when does THAT happen? I haven’t heard of such things since the Manhattan Project, and those were largely German JEWISH scientists, who had everything to lose if they stayed in Germany. Of course they’re working to defeat Hitler. But this guy is working to help the US and make our military better? All the while bragging about how much our military sucks now and how fucking awesome Russia’s is??? I mean, you should read some of his claims and assertions. They’re inane! He has a warped grasp on reality, particularly when bragging about Russian military technical superiority to anything the US has got. MAYBE THAT’S BECAUSE WE’VE ALLOWED GODDAMN RUSSIAN SPIES TO COME WORK IN OUR DAMN DEFENSE INDUSTRY AND SABOTAGE OUR MILITARY!!!!!!! What I want to know is, who the hell approved this, who approved his application for citizenship, was he fully, let alone adequately debriefed when he came here, how many polygraphs has he been given, is his work audited, who’s in on it with him, what’s his REAL motive, what’s his ulterior motive, who is he REALLY working for, and yet, if he’s so damn obvious, he wouldn’t be so damn obvious now, would he? So makes you wonder if this isn’t merely IW, put on by the DoD, if the author even exists at all and we’re merely playing at information warfare and propaganda games, and so many other options and possibilities. Frankly, I’m too busy with more important obligations, but if I had the luxury of time, I’d consider doing a little digging, because it seems to me that something’s rotten in Denmark.

Ultimately though, let’s assume the author is correct in his assessment of the wasting away of US military power, which has some truth to it. Again, fair criticisms to put forth. But the antithetical, virtually rabid, boasting, gloating, stiff dick factor for Russian military technology in its alleged superiority of everything American (which is frankly horseshit, in most cases), when he’s supposed to be a US citizen working in OUR defense industry to make our military better, all the while gushing about how damn awesome Russia is and we suck??? Doesn’t that strike you as odd? WTH don’t we deport him back to Russia if he’s got such a hardon for Putin and thinks his new country is pathetic? Why did he even bother coming here? Perchance another Oswald, a US plant? Just a thought, but then I like to conjecture all types of scenarios for most things.

Ultimately, right or wrong, propaganda or truth, the book is unreadable because the author is presented as having such a one sided superiority hangup, for the side he allegedly left. Which makes many Americans ticked off enough to stop reading the book. And so, possibly, maybe the project worked for the DIA or DARPA or RAND or whomever. It stinks too much and too obviously to be legit.

Work of fiction and not recommended. Two stars for amusement and creativity, as well as intended “mystery” scenario given to the author. Sadly, a waste of time and money.

View all my reviews

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Cool – My Newest LinkedIn Connection

Posted by Scott Holstad on December 31, 2018

As I’ve written about a few times this year, I’ve spent the year building my LinkedIn network in both quantity and quality, but focusing on quality in particular. At this point, I now have 15,500 connections, about 50% of whom are senior executives. I have the top executives at most major corporations in virtually every commercial industry that exists, as well as numerous high-level executives throughout the US military & federal government, including virtually every major agency, Congress, and the White House, as well as hundreds of international companies, dozens of international militaries and governments, as well as NATO, the UN, etc. And I have some pretty famous and some pretty influential connections. I don’t say all this to brag — it’s merely factual, and I’m setting up what I’m about to write.

I received several new connections today, one of whom is uber famous, a household name (in the US), and one of the most influential and powerful connections I now have: (Ret.) General David Petraeus, who also served as Director of the CIA! Cool, right??? I have probably over 100 connections who are generals, admirals, etc, even members of the Joint Chairs, and a few Assistant Secretary of Defense connections. But even though they’re important people, they’re not necessarily household names like General Patraeus. So I just wanted to share my enthusiasm, and I’m posting a screenshot to prove it.

LI-Patraeus-Connection-12-31-18

 

See? Wasn’t making it up. And you might notice we share over 500 mutual connections. Also cool.

In addition, I just received my much-anticipated copies of China’s National Defense University’s “The Science of Campaigns – Volume 2,” The Academy of Military Sciences of the People’s Liberation Army of China’s classic, “The Science of Military Strategy,” and the one I’m most excited about, PLA Col. Qiao Liang & PLA Col. Wang Xiangsui’s formally “secret” classic, “Unrestricted Warfare (China’s Master Plan To Destroy America),” and I’m very excited! I can’t wait to dive into these. Straight from the CCP’s mouths (no matter what the official story)…. Frankly, I don’t anticipate learning a great deal of new information, so much as just adding additional confirmation to certain things.

Finally, have a great New Year’s Eve and a great New Year’s!!!

 

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Certain Comments For China-Watchers

Posted by Scott Holstad on December 13, 2018

I published a new article on LinkedIn today and some of you may find it interesting, particularly those interested in foreign relations, and most especially China.

What has gotten the Chinese government so anxious, so upset about Michael Pillsbury’s controversial book, The Hundred-Year Marathon,​ published several years ago, that they would publish an op-ed last week attacking it and defending themselves?

I’m going to print the URL for the article here, and make it a hyperlink. Obviously, I would be grateful if anyone read it, and ideally, liked it and/or commented on it. Thanks so much!

Certain Comments For China-Watchers

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/certain-comments-china-watchers-scott-holstad/?published=t

 

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The Chair of the Joint Chiefs Wants Money & Has Some Interesting Comments To Make. What Are To Be Made of These?

Posted by Scott Holstad on November 24, 2018

(Note: I originally published this on LinkedIn on 11/23/18. The URL may be found here:  https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/chair-joint-chiefs-wants-money-has-some-interesting-comments-holstad/.)

U.S. Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Joseph Dunford wants some serious budgetary money from Congress to “maintain its [the US military] eroding military edge against Russia & China — but also to start innovating.” Interesting, & interesting choice of words. I have many questions, among them being … why haven’t we started innovating already? Funny, but I was under the distinct impression that we have been innovating recently & in some cases, for awhile. I remain under the impression that we’ve committed to EW & have been making some new, “innovative” progress in that field. And with Cyber Command’s new directive & “rules of engagement,” again I was under the impression that we’ve been moving in the innovation department there for awhile with major plans to proceed at lightening speed. Moreover, I research, read & am exposed to a number of various types of information implying or outright stating that, with the help of the increasingly numerous defense contractors, new technology with new capabilities, & new weapons systems are well under way, not only in R&D, but in actual production. So, I guess what I want to know is are my beliefs & assumptions wrong or did General Dunford simply utilize a somewhat unfortunate & potentially misleading choice of words in his statement?

Dunford further goes on to say “U.S. alliances would provide a decisive advantage in any major conflict. The U.S. would not lose a war with Russia or China, but such a war would be lengthy. And the U.S. has the edge today.” Again, interesting. Much of the information to which I am exposed suggests that the US does NOT have the edge today & moreover both Russia & especially China have surpassed us over the past couple of years. Indeed, China has doubled down on its R&D & technologies budget while allegedly, America’s R&D investment budgets have been slashed! Are we really that confident that in 3-5 years, the US would NOT lose a war (presumably cyber) with either country, particularly China, as that country has done more in the past two to three decades than what no country in the history of the world has done, in terms of the overall advancements it has made with its continuing commitment to Asian leadership, if not the world’s, as the US withdraws into nationalistic isolationism?

Please forgive me if I sound skeptical, jaded, sadly naïve or anything else that a number of you may not appreciate. My purpose in commenting on these issues is sincere. I truly DO want to know if I misunderstand current & future facts as they seem to appear, or if my understandings & assumptions are simply wrong – or perhaps a combination of both. And perhaps right as well. I have a great deal of respect for the Joint Chiefs & have many, many connections there, at the Pentagon & even with certain individuals who are or have been on the actual Joint Chiefs. I listen to the things they say – as well as to the things they don’t say. And I have numerous connections throughout the military & foreign policy communities. I have heard a great deal of worrisome predictions, beliefs, facts, data & statistics, & I find it difficult not to assume certain things, & my particular personality is one in which I hope for the best while planning for the worst. Additionally, while I do not presently have time to address this topic, I am curious to which “US alliances” the Chairman is referring. Such things are subject to change at any time, as we have seen & will likely continue to see….

The Chairman makes some additional interesting observations & statements, which I really do not have the time to address at the moment. And I do realize most to all of you in these respective industries are not at liberty to comment or address them. But I would welcome communication from any who wish to discuss these & related topics, who wish to share my concerns or correct my understanding of certain things, etc. Feel free to contact me. I promise to keep our communication confidential. As I tend to stay tremendously busy & am regularly deluged with hundreds of messages & emails, it may take me awhile to respond, but I shall certainly try to as best I can. And if anyone does care to publicly comment on these & related topics, that would also be welcome.

Finally, the article that inspired this post may be found at https://www.defensenews.com/congress/2018/11/17/saving-americas-military-edge-will-take-money-and-new-ideas-dunford-says/. I’ve always found DefenseNews to be a solid, reliable source of information & appreciate the job the people there do on a consistent basis.

I strongly support our military & the strides & efforts made throughout its branches, as well as joint efforts. But for too long, I have been worried about the seeming trend in which we fall behind other growing powers, particularly in technology, R&D & cyber. Space too, for that matter. And I am anxious to see new & greater commitment to these & other substantial areas, as many of us believe many real threats do exist & will certainly grow, most likely fairly quickly. And I’m determined we regain our lead & remain in the lead in new & expanding theaters & branches. This is my stance. I like to believe it is shared by many. Thank you.

Scott C. Holstad

November 23, 2018

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LinkedIn Update: Totally Surreal

Posted by Scott Holstad on October 27, 2018

As some of you know, I’ve been “growing” my LinkedIn network (https://www.linkedin.com/in/scottholstad/) this year, both in terms of quantity & quality. I’ve been doing this with the goal of having a high-quality network for consulting purposes at some point in the future. I first blogged about this on May 14 (https://hankrules2011.com/2018/05/14/linkedin-and-my-recent-adventures-there-part-i/) & May 15 (https://hankrules2011.com/2018/05/15/linkedin-and-my-recent-adventures-there-part-ii/). It’s interesting to compare my statistics then with what they are now. However, those two blogs told the story of my LI “experiment” to seriously grow my network, again, both in terms of quantity & quality. When I published those blogs, I had grown my network from a little over 400 in January to over 3,300. My network is now over 13,800 people, nearly half of whom are senior execs. And I’ve posted some of the more “notable” new connections online a couple of times. Well, here I go again. It’s been crazy & I’m about to post a list of seriously “notable” LI connections that I’ve gotten just over the past three weeks. Take the time to go through this list. Some of them are just mind blowing. And I don’t post these to brag. Every day I’m amazed & it seems so surreal & I just want to share my amazement at the type of people who join my network. Frankly, I have no idea why some of these people would want me in their network or would want to be in mine. Sometimes it’s just a little shocking. And by the way, I’ve had a small IT company for several years now, which I haven’t been able to do much with due to my extremely bad health. But a few months ago, I had the website redesigned to reflect current capabilities, as our focus has changed this year. If you want to visit it, you can find it at https://wiremedesigns.com. As to the list of incredible connections, here goes:

Some New/Recent “Notable” LinkedIn Connections – 10/27/18

 

  1. Sr VP Creative Advertising, Universal Pictures
  2. COO, Universal Music Group Nashville
  3. Head of Social Marketing, Billboard
  4. VP Mission Assurance, Space & Airborne Systems, Raytheon
  5. Marketing Director, Rolling Stone
  6. Sr VP, The Aerospace Corporation
  7. Director Operations, Harris Corporation
  8. Sr Director Security & Risk, Oracle
  9. CIO Digital Growth, KraftHeinz
  10. CTO/CIO, AAA
  11. Corporate Director Engineering, Northrop Grumman
  12. Sr VP Command, Control & Intelligence, CACI International Inc
  13. Director Automation & Cloud Security, Nike
  14. Founder/Chairman/CEO, Napster
  15. CIO SP Networking, Cisco
  16. VP Global HR Service, VMware
  17. Sr VP Live Media & Strategic Partnership, Rolling Stone
  18. CEO, ATLAS Space Operations, Inc
  19. Director Advanced Programs, General Atomics Electromagnetic Systems
  20. CTO, WebMD
  21. Principal Director, The Aerospace Corporation
  22. Brigadier General, Kosovo Military
  23. Deputy Director Advanced Space Capabilities Directorate, Air Force Rapid Capabilities Office
  24. Deputy Commander, US Third Fleet. 60,000 sailors, 120 ships, 4 aircraft carriers
  25. Director Advanced Technology Program, Lockheed Martin
  26. VP Global Crisis Management & Business Continuity, NBCUniversal
  27. VP PMO, Commercial Aviation Sector, L3 Technologies
  28. CSO, Fidelity Investments
  29. VP Data & Advanced Analytics, Bitdefender
  30. Deputy Director France International Nuclear Agency
  31. International Relations Expert, Islamic Republic of Iran
  32. G3 (Lieutenant General) & Desk Officer, Multinational Future Development, German Army HQ
  33. Director Government Missions, SpaceX
  34. Assistant Federal Security Director, Department of Homeland Security
  35. CTO, Microsoft Azure
  36. CFO, Thales Defense & Security
  37. Director Security, Indianapolis Colts
  38. Corporate VP Communications, Microsoft
  39. VP Thales eSecurity Federal, Thales Defense & Security
  40. Corporate VP Cybersecurity Solution, Microsoft
  41. CEO, Rackspace
  42. Ambassador of Georgia to Washington
  43. Assistant CIO, US Navy
  44. Director for Iraq, National Security Council, The White House
  45. CFO Technology, NBCUniversal
  46. VP Security, JetBlue Airways
  47. Director Rule of Law, Executive Office of the Secretary General, United Nations
  48. Deputy Director Public Affairs, USAF
  49. VP Public Policy, Verizon
  50. Global Head Information Security, AIG
  51. Director, Department of Peace Operations, Government of Romania
  52. Nuclear Safety & Security Director, Jordan Nuclear Regulatory Commission
  53. Commander, Pacific Air Forces
  54. Deputy Federal Security Director, US Department of Homeland Security
  55. Director of Department for Radiation Applications, Norwegian Radiation Protection Authority
  56. CTO, Leidos
  57. Deputy Director, Office of Counterintelligence, Department of the Treasury
  58. Special Operations Team Leader, US Secret Service
  59. Sr VP Mobility Solutions, Blackberry
  60. Chief of Intelligence, Department of Defense
  61. CIO, Quicken Loans
  62. Chief of Staff/Assistant Director, INTERPOL
  63. VP/CAE, Symantec
  64. Sr Director Engineering, Harris Corporation
  65. VP Strategy & Solutions, CACI International
  66. Radiochemist, Chernobyl Ukraine
  67. Director of Intelligence, NATO
  68. Sr VP Engineering, The Aerospace Corporation
  69. Federal CTO, Symantec
  70. VP Engineering, Qualcomm
  71. CTO, IBM Cloud Platform
  72. Director Software Engineering, Fidelity Investments
  73. VP Engineering & Global Product Development, Northrup Grumman
  74. Director of Weather, USAF
  75. Exec VP Engineering, Parsons Corporation
  76. Director of Cyber Strategy, Architecture & Solutions, Freddie Mac
  77. Exec Director Cybersecurity, Morgan Stanley
  78. VP, Freddie Mac
  79. Sr Director Cybersecurity, PepsiCo
  80. Director Operations, Amazon
  81. Sr VP, Booz Allen Hamilton
  82. Director Future Concepts, Test & Analysis, USSTRATCOM
  83. VP, Head of Technology Risk Management, Capital One
  84. Sr VP Mobile B2B, Samsung
  85. Exec Director Cyber Threat Management, EY
  86. CSS, Panda Security
  87. CISO, Major League Baseball
  88. President, The Ohio State University
  89. Federal CIO, US Office of Management & Budget
  90. Head of Online Threats, Bitdefender
  91. CISO, Equifax
  92. Sr VP Enterprise Incident Manager, Wells Fargo & Co
  93. CISO, Penn State University
  94. Global CPISO, GE Aviation
  95. Head of Cybersecurity Threat Detection & Response Center, The Home Depot
  96. Sr VP Global Information Security, Citigroup
  97. Head Private Sector Development & Outreach Department, Office of the President of Islamic Republic of Afghanistan
  98. CISO, Deluxe
  99. CHRO, McAfee
  100. Sr VP Operational Excellence, CACI International
  101. Global Head of Threat Intelligence, Deutsche Bank
  102. Sr Director Mission Support Solutions, BAE Systems
  103. Director Technology, CBS Interactive
  104. Sr Director US Army Programs, Honeywell Aerospace
  105. CISO, Raytheon Space & Airborne Systems
  106. CISO, Intercontinental Hotels Group
  107. CISO, eBay
  108. Director Research & Engineering, Office of the Secretary of Defense
  109. Global Director Industrial & IoT Security, Unisys
  110. Sr VP Consulting, Mandiant
  111. Sr Director Information Security, Parsons Corp
  112. Sr VP In-Theater Marketing, Twentieth Century Fox
  113. CPO, US Senate
  114. Sr VP Intelligence & Defense Programs, Parsons Corp
  115. CISO, Avaya
  116. CFO, Lyft
  117. CLO, Department of Veterans Affairs
  118. Associate Producer, 60 Minutes
  119. CPSO, Harris Corp
  120. Director Global Security, Kimberly-Clark
  121. CSO, SAIC
  122. Sr Director Global Product Security Engineering, Intel
  123. CRO, Brown University
  124. Deputy Director, Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs
  125. CPO, US Department of Health & Human Services
  126. CISO, Yale University
  127. Sr VP, Mastercard
  128. VP Business Development, Parsons Corp
  129. Director IoT & AI, Microsoft
  130. Justice of the Supreme Court, South Carolina
  131. Chief of Staff, US Delegation to NATO
  132. CIO Enterprise Technology, NBCUniversal
  133. CTO, Motorola
  134. Director Media & Digital Communication, Cartier
  135. VP Marketing & Product, SOG Knives & Tools
  136. Sr VP, CACI International
  137. VP Business Development, CACI International
  138. CTO Data, IBM Analytics
  139. Director Analytics & Data Services, Dunkin Brands
  140. VP Financial, Benchmade Knife Co.
  141. Chief of Staff Worldwide Safety & Regulatory, Pfizer
  142. VP Capture, CACI International
  143. VP HR, Cartier
  144. Deputy Assistant Director – CIRG, FBI
  145. Director Global Security, Pfizer
  146. CTO, US Department of Homeland Security
  147. Director Technology Finance, Target
  148. Sr VP Logistics & Digital Commerce & Ecosystems, Target
  149. CIO, Better Business Bureau
  150. Presidente/CEO, Beretta
  151. CISO, Barrick Gold Corp
  152. Sr VP Operations, Dick’s Sporting Goods
  153. CISO, Petco
  154. CISO, University of Georgia
  155. Director National Center for Supercomputing Applications, University of Illinois
  156. Division VP, Applebee’s
  157. CFO, Panera Bread
  158. CISO, University of Wisconsin
  159. CIO, University of Texas
  160. Director Business Intelligence & Analytics, Macy’s
  161. Director Computer & Network Security, Columbia University
  162. CISO, The Ohio State University
  163. VP Information & Security, Citi
  164. VP Information Risk Lead, JPMorgan Chase
  165. CISO, Valvoline
  166. VP Business Development & Strategy, Leidos
  167. VP Consumer Solutions, Bitdefender
  168. VP Business Development, Lockheed Martin
  169. CIO/CHCO, US Capital Police
  170. Director Information Security – Risk, Governance & Awareness, Fannie Mae
  171. VP Marketing &Product SOG Knives & Tools
  172. Exec VP Global Marketing, Twentieth Century Fox
  173. Director Information Security Architecture & Engineering, Harvard University
  174. VP Operations & R&D, Beretta
  175. Sr VP WW Sales End-User Computing, VMware
  176. Sr Advisor to DHS from NORAD
  177. Sr Director Cyber Threat Intelligence & Detection, Target
  178. Associate Deputy Director Community HUMINT, CIA
  179. Director Systems Engineering – Infrastructure & Cloud Service Delivery, Macy’s
  180. Director NA Sales, Benchmade Knife Co.
  181. CTO, Pfizer
  182. Sr Cybersecurity Analyst, Supreme Court of the United States
  183. Assistant Secretary of the Army – Manpower & Reserve Affairs
  184. Assistant Secretary of Defense – Asia & Pacific Security Affairs
  185. VP Specialized Intelligence Services, CACI International
  186. CTO, ICANN
  187. CDS, Department of Defense
  188. Director Global Cybersecurity Architecture & Operations, Abbot
  189. CPO, CBS Corp
  190. Sr VP Engineering Enterprise Networking Business, Cisco
  191. VP Public Cloud Security, Salesforce
  192. Sr VP Agile Management, CA Technologies
  193. CTO Analytics, Cisco
  194. CISO, Deloitte Consulting
  195. Network & Security Operations Manager, Pittsburgh Steelers
  196. VP Global Operations, Land’s End
  197. CMO, Books-A-Million
  198. Director Missile Defense Programs, Teledyne Brown Engineering
  199. VP Homeland & National Defense, CACI International
  200. CTO Software, Cisco
  201. CISO, Aetna
  202. VP Advanced Programs & Technology, Northrup Grumman
  203. Sr VP Strategic Business Development & Acquisition, Teldyne Brown Engineering
  204. CEA & Director Strategic Transformation & Operation, Proctor & Gamble
  205. Director IT Shared Services, Fossil Group
  206. Director Communications, Audi
  207. Global CTO, Proctor & Gamble
  208. Director Service Operations, Audi
  209. VP Sales, Seiko
  210. President/CEO, Crocs
  211. Director IT, Development & Enterprise Systems Architecture, Crocs
  212. Sr Director Global Sourcing & Manufacturing, Converse
  213. Director Department of Justice Cybercrime Lab
  214. Director Operations, CBS Corp
  215. Sr VP, Christie’s Watch Department
  216. Director Digital Analytics & Site Optimization, Eddie Bauer
  217. Sr Global Brand Director, Converse
  218. Director Retail Experience, Gucci
  219. VP, Head of Retail, Strategy & Operations, Gucci
  220. Sr VP Global Media & Digital Marketing, Twentieth Century Fox
  221. VP Menswear, Home & Business Outfitters, Land’s End
  222. Director Global Ecommerce Technical Operations, Crocs
  223. CISO, Bed, Bath & Beyond
  224. CSO, The Home Depot
  225. Sr VP Engineering, Oracle
  226. Divisional VP, Eddie Bauer
  227. Chief of Staff, Survivability Assurance Office, USAF
  228. Director of Nuclear Operations, HQ Air Mobility Command, USAF
  229. Sr Director Communications, Converse
  230. Co-Founder, Ubuntu
  231. VP Marketing, Cumulus Media
  232. VP Business Development, Booz Allen
  233. Global CRO, Bloomberg Media
  234. Sr Director Information Security, Sony
  235. CISO, Raymond James Financial Inc
  236. President/CEO, TVPPA
  237. CEO/President, Engility Corp
  238. VP Retail, Cartier
  239. Sr Director Global Market Access Policy, Johnson & Johnson
  240. VP Space & Missile Systems, Engility Corp
  241. Deputy CIO, UC Berkeley
  242. Regional Counterintelligence Director, NASA
  243. VP Engineering, Sophos
  244. Sr Director Brand Protection, Nike
  245. VP Strategy, Twentieth Century Fox
  246. Director Corporate Communications, The Aerospace Corp
  247. CISO, UNICEF
  248. Director IT, USAA
  249. Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense, Military Personnel Policy
  250. VP Global Brand Marketing, Fossil Group
  251. Secretary of the Air Force
  252. Head of Network Infrastructure, NASA
  253. Assistant Secretary, Bureau of Diplomatic Security, US Department of State
  254. President Worldwide Home Entertainment, Twentieth Century Fox
  255. IBM CTO Open Technology
  256. VP Aviation, Strategic Plans & Programs, Sierra Nevada Corp
  257. Managing Director Application Security, Deloitte
  258. VP Integrated Tactical Solutions, Sierra Nevada Corp
  259. VP National Services, CACI International
  260. Director Engineering, Sierra Nevada Corp
  261. Sr VP Legal & Business Affairs, Twentieth Century Fox
  262. VP Finance, Twentieth Century Fox
  263. Sr Director Global Sales & Marketing, Missile & Weapons System, Boeing
  264. Director AI, Booz Allen
  265. Deputy Director Cyberspace Operations Centre, NATO
  266. VP ISA Systems, L3 Technologies
  267. CTO, L3 Communications Systems
  268. CIO/CTO, Deloitte
  269. Sr Director Engineering, L3 Technologies
  270. VP Corporate Quality, Sierra Nevada Corp
  271. Exec VP Business Operations, Comcast
  272. VP Strategy, L3 Technologies
  273. CIO, USAF
  274. Director Big Data Platform Development, GlaxoSmithKline
  275. VP & Chief Engineer Missile & Weapons System, Boeing
  276. CTO, L3 Technologies
  277. CTO Americas, NetApp
  278. President, Microsoft
  279. CEO Battelle
  280. President Broadband Communications Sector, L3 Technologies
  281. Director Global Partner Marketing, Cisco
  282. Global VP, Thales Security
  283. Sr Director Logistics & Operations, Samsung
  284. VP Customer Delivery, TVA
  285. Sr Director Security Engineering, Symantec
  286. VP Security Research, Trend Micro
  287. Director Systems Analysis & Concepts, NASA
  288. Director Innovation & Strategic Partnerships, Visa
  289. VP AI Enterprise Solutions, Wells Fargo
  290. CTVO, MIT Lincoln Lab
  291. Deputy Director High Performance Computing Innovation Center, Lawrence Livermore National Lab
  292. CSO, Visa
  293. Director Operations, Warner Brothers
  294. Director Engineering, Western Digital
  295. Sr Director Analytic Business Partners, Western Digital
  296. VP Mission & Launch Operations, Space Exploration Tech
  297. VP Combatant Command, General Dynamics Information Technology
  298. VP Operations – International Division, Engility Corp
  299. VP Cyber Risk Officer, Citi
  300. Global Head of Storage & Engineering Systems, Citi
  301. VP IT Security Operations & Strategy, Charter Communications
  302. CIO, Raytheon Intelligence & Information Services
  303. CISO, Delta Dental
  304. Sr Director Advanced Analytics & Machine Learning, Nike
  305. Director Materials Science Department, The Aerospace Corp
  306. Director Growth – Creative Cloud, Adobe
  307. VP Infrastructure Operations, Visa
  308. CIO, Parsons Corp
  309. VP Sales NA Home Entertainment & Sound, Sony
  310. CIO IT, Yamaha Motor Corp
  311. Director Cybersecurity Intelligence & Response Team, Dell
  312. Assistant Secretary General, United Nations
  313. Deputy Director Center for Effective Public Management, The Brookings Institution
  314. CFO, The Brookings Institution
  315. Sr VP Engineering, Malwarebytes
  316. COO, SAP
  317. President, SAP National Security Service
  318. Ambassador of Poland to United Nations
  319. VP NA Sales, Bitdefender
  320. VP Digitization, Customer Experience, Shared Services & Future Skills, Deutsche Telecom
  321. Sr VP Defense & Security Group, Engility Corp
  322. Executive Director, European Union Agency for Network & Information Security
  323. VP Growth Business Operations, Engility Corp
  324. Sr VP Intelligence Solutions, Engility Corp
  325. Special Assistant to the President for Tech, Telecom & Cyber Policy, The White House
  326. Assistant Secretary General, NATO
  327. VP Finance, Knot’s Berry Farm
  328. VP Sales, Twentieth Century Fox
  329. Assistant Secretary General Central Support Service, United Nations
  330. CTO National Security Group, Microsoft Federal
  331. Director Consumer Experience, Carhartt
  332. Sr VP/Chief Architect, Intuit
  333. Director Cybersecurity, Carhartt
  334. COO, Wells Fargo
  335. Cyber Security Coordinator, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Israel
  336. VP Field Sales, Toshiba
  337. Deputy Assistant Secretary, US Department of State
  338. CIO, University of Georgia
  339. VP Operations, Fanatics
  340. General Counsel, White House Office of National Drug Control Policy
  341. CSO, HP
  342. Director Strategy, Cisco
  343. VP Engineering, Sierra Nevada Corp
  344. Sr Director Electronics Solutions, Honeywell
  345. Director Project Engineering, Thales
  346. Head of Global Business Development, Xerox
  347. VP Engineering, Google
  348. Director Counterintelligence, Harris Corp
  349. Exec Director Global Operations & Investigations, Caterpillar Inc
  350. Inspector General, US Naval Research Lab
  351. COO, SEC (Securities & Exchange Commission)
  352. COO, AFOSI
  353. VP Engineering, McAfee
  354. Director End User Services, Levi Strauss & Co
  355. Exec Director, US Marine Corp Forces Command
  356. Deputy CTO, US Department of the Treasury
  357. CPO, IRS
  358. Deputy Under Secretary, US Army

 

Here are some interesting stats on my network.

LinkedIn Connections: 13,834

 

Senior Execs:  6,631

C-Level Execs:  2,224

Writer/Editor:  535

Project/Program Manager:  493

Network Engineer:  354

Developer/Software Engineer:  421

Engineer:  885

IT:  935

Security Professionals:  1,807

Federal & International Government: 2,077

 

I had been tracking HR/Recruiters, but I stopped. I also had been tracking corporate communications/marketing professionals, but I stopped that too. I wish I hadn’t. I wish I had tracked researchers/scientists, because I have a huge number of them in my network, but I don’t have the time to go back to the beginning & count them all up, so that’s that.

 

Here is a list of the companies & organizations that are most represented in my network, in order of the highest number of connections on down. I won’t post the totals for each because that would take too much time, & I have other things to attend to right now. But here it is:

 

  1. US military/DoD
  2. Microsoft
  3. Cisco
  4. C Spire
  5. Dell
  6. Malwarebytes
  7. TVA
  8. United Nations
  9. Amazon Web Services
  10. Raytheon
  11. Oracle
  12. Booz Allen Hamilton
  13. Northrop Grumman
  14. Palo Alto Networks
  15. Lockheed Martin
  16. Leidos
  17. Samsung
  18. Seagate
  19. IBM
  20. Intel
  21. Citi
  22. Harris Corp
  23. Boeing
  24. Google
  25. CACI International
  26. European Commission
  27. Western Digital
  28. NATO
  29. General Dynamics
  30. Oak Ridge National Laboratory
  31. Parsons Corp
  32. Ticketmaster
  33. Visa
  34. Twentieth Century Fox
  35. BAE Systems
  36. JP Morgan
  37. Bitdefender
  38. Trend Micro
  39. Amazon
  40. NBCUniversal
  41. Adobe
  42. Symantec
  43. The Aerospace Corp
  44. Engility
  45. McAfee
  46. Lawrence Livermore National Lab
  47. Sophos
  48. Sierra Nevada Corp
  49. RAND
  50. Sony
  51. L3 Technologies
  52. Deloitte
  53. VMware
  54. SAIC
  55. The Brookings Institution

 

What a list, huh? Heavy on defense contractors, heavy on IT. But also finance, film, think tanks, research labs, etc. A couple of more tidbits: I have very senior connections with nearly 20 international militaries. I also have many hundreds of nuclear connections, including many – some very senior – at over 40 countries. If that didn’t put me on the CIA & NSA’s radar, I don’t know what will! LOL! Actually, I have many very senior connections at virtually all of the intelligence agencies, including DIA, DISA, DTRA, FBI, CIA, NSA & more. And actually, I think I’ll list all of the nuclear countries where I have connections. It’s a bizarre & interesting list. In addition to international agencies, here are the countries in no particular order:

 

  1. United States
  2. Sweden
  3. Nigeria
  4. Belgium
  5. Egypt
  6. Italy
  7. Pakistan
  8. Tanzania
  9. Bosnia Herzegovina
  10. Saudi Arabia
  11. Canada
  12. Chile
  13. Argentina
  14. France
  15. Jordan
  16. UAE
  17. Ukraine
  18. England
  19. Romania
  20. Serbia
  21. Bulgaria
  22. Zimbabwe
  23. Turkey
  24. China
  25. Slovenia
  26. South Africa
  27. Montenegro
  28. Tunisia
  29. Spain
  30. Palestine
  31. Hungary
  32. Syria
  33. Malaysia
  34. Sri Lanka
  35. South Korea
  36. Bangladesh
  37. Norway
  38. Dubai
  39. India
  40. Armenia
  41. Slovak Republic

 

Wow! Geez. What a list. A few of those countries make me a little nervous. Oh, I don’t know … Pakistan? India? China? Ukraine? Maybe a few others. And I have hundreds of US connections. I’m not a nuclear expert, so I’ve been reading and researching books and articles on nuclear engineering, nuclear power, “limited” nuclear warfare, and more.

Oh! I also forgot to mention something else that’s pretty cool. I now have very senior connections with most of the four major team sports professional teams, including several owners, as well as a number of players! In fact, I’ve been working on some projects with some players & coaches! I have senior connections with 29 NFL teams, 24 NHL teams, 25 MLB teams & 29 NBA teams.

Okay, I could keep going on & boring you to tears, but I truly do have other things to do, so I’ll stop now. One final thing. A few weeks ago, LinkedIn sent me an email that said due to my posting regular quality content & to my excellent network, they advised me to change my “Connect” button on my profile & in search results to “Follow.” Typically, the only people who have Follow as an option are usually very high profile people, like the CEO of Google, CEO of Microsoft, CEO of GE, Director of the MIT Media Lab, etc. So it’s kind of an honor to be placed in that class of people. And I went ahead & made the change & people have been slowly but surely following me, as well as still sending me connection requests. So that’s cool. And unreal. There’s a whole lot more I could share, but I’m stopping now. Have a good weekend, everyone!

 

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Book Review: Nuclear Weapons: A Very Short Introduction

Posted by Scott Holstad on October 14, 2018

Nuclear Weapons: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions)Nuclear Weapons: A Very Short Introduction by Joseph M. Siracusa

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

At a little over 150 pages, this book covers a lot of ground in a short format. Unfortunately, while I did think it was pretty good, its focus wasn’t entirely what I wanted, and it lacked in some areas. There is an initial introduction to the creation of atomic bombs from a very minimal and layman’s technical perspective, but then the book launches into the history of nuclear power, the history behind the Manhattan Project and the WW II race for the atomic bomb, America’s legacy of being the first and only country to use it, and the bulk of the rest of the book is a history and discussion of the Cold War politics, diplomacy, and military strategic readiness (from a US perspective) between the US and the Soviet Union. The book ends with a minor bit on how, with the fall of the Soviet Union, the US has had to try to find a place for the Bomb in its arsenal, for some people, how to justify not only maintaining a large stockpile, but improving it, for others, how to decrease a load of weapons large enough to destroy this planet many times over. It ends by acknowledging the fact that now that there’s not another nuclear “enemy” to construct a strategy around, and with the advent of non-state sponsored organizations, terrorists and the like, the effort to construct a new ideology and strategy is much more difficult than it used to be.

All of that was good, if not occasionally repetitive. What I had hoped to see was more scientific and technical detail behind, not only the creation of the early bombs, but current technology, and where we are heading. And I didn’t get that. I also wanted to see more of a discussion on the ethics behind this, and on the justifications of maintaining the current seven nuclear powers while working to ensure no other country, and especially no other country the US “disapproves” of (Iran…), obtains nuclear weapons or a nuclear weapon industry. I mean, why is it okay for Pakistan to have them, but not Iran? Why is it okay for Israel to be thought of of having them (they won’t admit to it), while other countries cannot? I’m not saying I support the idea of more or warmongering countries getting nuclear weapons, but who made America the planet’s god, to decide who gets them and who doesn’t? That strikes me as incredibly arrogant and hypocritical. And I’m American! Naturally, the world would be better off without nuclear weapons, but that genie is out of the bottle, so this is a complex problem requiring, yes, political and diplomatic discussions and solutions, and not saber rattling. I’m currently reading another book on “limited” nuclear warfare for the 21st century. It’s incredibly interesting, and I think it would make a good companion piece to this book, maybe as Volume 2 of a two volume series. Because that’s where the world has gone, that’s where the world should and will have to go if we intend to not commit global suicide, and nuclear power countries need to dialogue about these issues and more.

This book doesn’t have the highest rating out there, and I’ve read a lot of reviews and it seems mostly due to lack of sufficient discussion on a wide range of topics, such as I’ve brought up. But I think its lower rating is unfair, because the subtitle for the book is “A Very Short Introduction.” What the hell do you expect for 150 pages?!? Of course I would have liked more. For that, I need to buy a 750 page textbook for $200. This was exactly what it advertised itself to be, so I feel it merits four stars at a minimum. If this is a topic that interests you, I certainly recommend it.

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Book Review: Blitzkrieg: From the Rise of Hitler to the Fall of Dunkirk

Posted by Scott Holstad on September 21, 2018

Blitzkrieg: From the Rise of Hitler to the Fall of DunkirkBlitzkrieg: From the Rise of Hitler to the Fall of Dunkirk by Len Deighton

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was a pretty good book, but it had some information and assertions that surprised me. I’ve spent my whole life as a war buff, spent much of my youth consumed with WW II, thought I understood how Blitzkrieg theory was actually fought in WW II, but apparently, I’m wrong.

The book gives a pretty good history and summary of German war status, theory, preparation, Hitler’s rise, mindset, theories of various military strategists. And then the war finally commences. Obviously, then, if this is well known to others, I’m showing my own ignorance here, but I’d always heard that Germany’s Blitzkrieg techniques were unleashed on Poland, before excelling in Belgium and France, and ultimately later Russia, to a degree. If you’ve believed that too, Len Deighton will argue you’re wrong. His thesis is it was not used in Poland, it was somehow not used in Russia, and it wasn’t even really used in Belgium. Merely in France, in the Ardennes, to a shocking degree of success. This was news to me, but I’ll grant Len authority status and take his word for it.

I wasn’t totally stunned at how inept France’s leadership, both political and military, was, as I’d read other books on France in other wars of the century where the beaurocracy, logistical and communication nightmares are simply legendary, but it was still a bit of a shock to find out how the previously thought to be best army in Europe/the world was so incredibly fucked up! It took 48-72 hours to relay orders, because the leaders didn’t use radios, everything was hand carried (orders), and just because you got orders, you didn’t do anything until they had been confirmed one to two more times. By which point the German army was 60 miles behind your lines, destroying your country. Fucking idiots! The British, initially, weren’t a lot better, at least not the vaunted RAF, which was disappointing to read, but if the truth hurts, it hurts. Some of the French actually played soldier at Dunkirk, allowing hundreds of thousands of British and French troops to escape to Britain, but again, I continued to be shocked at how willing the French political and military leadership was to surrender to Hitler and essentially conspire in his plot against Jews and others, while the Free French forces in Britain were led by only one real general of note, and we all know who that is. Why France is on the UN Security Council is beyond me. They’ve insisted they’re one of the great world powers, but they got their asses kicked in WW I, went over to Hitler after getting their asses kicked in WW II, lost Indochina (although embarrassingly, America followed France’s exact same mistakes with the same results), lost most or all of their colonies, and while they’re the centuries biggest losers, they land a permanent spot on the UN Security Council. Don’t get it. I’ve read about how they insisted. THEY HELPED HITLER! They shouldn’t have been allowed anywhere near the UN Security Council! Of course, while implicitly bragging about the US in the first half of the century, like an ugly American, I could admit to a number of American “irregularities” that many people wouldn’t want known about a LOT of countries around the world where uninvited or unwanted westerners stuck their noses into things and propped up or took down “dictators” all over the damn place, so in the end, maybe the US shouldn’t be on the Security Council either, eh? LOL!

Okay, I’ll stop with the politicizing. Sorry. It’s a good book, an easy read, interesting to those who would find the topic interesting, but stops with the capitulation of France, and I guess I knocked a star off because I wish the author had gone on to address Russia and explain just why that was NOT blitzkrieg warfare — what the differences were — because without having studied it in detail lately, it seems like similar tactics were used to launch the Eastern Front, but obviously I’m wrong. I just want to know how and why I’m wrong, and I never got that information from this book, so one star off for that. Otherwise, recommended.

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