The Soviets - How Much Do We Know?
AIR WAR COLL MAXWELL AFB AL
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Initial discussion of both the historical and current reasons for knowing the United States primary adversary, the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics USSR, leads to further examination of the specific categories of knowledge the professional military officer should have regarding his enemy. History, society, economy, political system and geography are discussed along with the implications each has in contributing to the senior professionals required knowledge. Next, the results of a questionnaire on the Soviet system administered to the Air War College USAF students in the class of 1985 lead to the conclusion that lieutenant colonels and colonels in the Air Force have only superficial knowledge of the USSR in the five categories of knowledge previously mentioned. General observations on the American educational system, media, and professional military education programs at Squadron Officer School, Air Command and Staff College, and Air War College point to a need to start the Soviet education process earlier in the individuals career, increase the exposure at all USAF professional military education schools and establish some type of additional mandatory training. Suggestions as to the specifics of implementing such a program are offered with the hope of providing a starting point for fixing the problem. Author
- Humanities and History