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CSAF Leadership Library: January 2024

  • Published
  • Secretary of the Air Force Public Affairs

Do not follow where the path may lead. Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.Ralph Waldo Emerson


Airmen,CSAF Leadership Library

Amidst an ever-complex security landscape where our competitors are advancing at an alarming rate, our role goes beyond mere observation—we must lead. The Air Force is actively undertaking a transformative journey to address evolving security needs. Fueled by our unwavering commitment to Airmen to reach their full potential, it brings me great excitement to introduce my inaugural additions to the CSAF #23 Leadership Library. Centering on transformative leadership, teamwork, military innovation, and the advancement of technology, these sources are designed to inform and inspire.

In One Mission, Chris Fussell presents a dynamic guide that offers takeaways from real-world examples of successful organizational changes. By applying these battle-tested strategies, readers actively gain insights into revolutionizing large organizations, instilling adaptability, and the collaboration necessary to adapt to the service we must become to face the current and future security environment.

Yuen Khong’s, Analogies at War, provides an astute examination of how historical analogies influence political decision-making. Supported by insights from senior officials and declassified documents, Khong's book not only unveils the cognitive processes shaping policy choices but also serves as a resource for challenging assumptions and avoiding cognitive traps in contemporary decision-making.

Unlock the secrets to excelling in a world of constant change with Brad Stulberg's How to Excel When Everything Is Changing. Dive into the transformative "4 Ps" approach—Pause, Process, Plan, Proceed—shaping a mindset of thoughtful response over impulsive reaction. From embracing uncertainty to fostering mental resilience, Stulberg's insights will guide those seeking adaptability and well-being.

Explore the urgent call for international cooperation on uncontrolled artificial intelligence (AI) in Kissinger and Allison's thought-provoking article in Foreign Affairs—The Path to AI Arms Control: America and China Must Work Together to Avert Catastrophe. This read underscores the importance of swift action and collaboration to address the potential consequences of unregulated AI development.

This combination of diverse resources offers a multifaceted approach to service, leadership, and resilience. These themes emphasize the importance of informed decision-making, adaptability, and understanding of the environment in which we serve. My desire is that each and every one of you is always prepared to meet the challenges we will continue to face daily. These titles can be accessed and tracked through the E-Learning CSAF Library Journey, available via your web browsers and phone applications. These are extraordinary times, and I am committed to the success of the team.

CSAF #23

Editor’s note: The CSAF Leadership Library is a fluid set of media selected by Gen. Allvin that evolves as novel ideas are published, recorded and debated. New entries will be added periodically throughout the year.



CSAF Leadership Library Books


One Mission

In Team of Teams, retired four-star General Stanley McChrystal and former Navy SEAL Chris Fussell made the case for a new organizational model combining the agility, adaptability, and cohesion of a small team with the power and resources of a giant organization. Now, in One Mission, Fussell channels all his experiences, both military and corporate, into powerful strategies for unifying isolated and distrustful teams. This practical guide will help leaders in any field implement the Team of Teams approach to tear down their silos, improve collaboration, and avoid turf wars. By committing to one higher mission, organizations develop an overall capability that far exceeds the sum of their parts.




Analogies at War

From World War I to Operation Desert Storm, American policymakers have repeatedly invoked the "lessons of history" as they contemplated taking their nation to war. Do these historical analogies actually shape policy, or are they primarily tools of political justification? Yuen Foong Khong argues that leaders use analogies to justify policies and perform specific cognitive and information-processing tasks essential to political decision-making. Khong identifies what these tasks are and shows how they can be used to explain the U.S. decision to intervene in Vietnam. Relying on interviews with senior officials and on recently declassified documents, the author demonstrates with a precision not attained by previous studies that the three most important analogies of the Vietnam era - Korea, Munich, and Dien Bien Phu - can account for America's Vietnam choices. A special contribution is the author's use of cognitive and social psychology to support his argument about how humans analogize and to explain why policymakers often use analogies poorly.



CSAF Leadership Library Podcasts


Master of Change: How to Excel When Everything Is Changing

Brad Stulberg researches, writes, and coaches on mental health, well-being, and sustainable excellence. He is the bestselling author of The Practice of Groundedness and Master of Change. He regularly contributes to the New York Times, and his work has been featured in the Wall Street Journal and the Atlantic, among other outlets. He is on the faculty at the University of Michigan’s School of Public Health.





CSAF Leadership Library Articles


Foreign Affairs: The Path to AI Arms Control: America and China Must Work Together to Avert Catastrophe

This year marks the 78th anniversary of the end of the deadliest war in history and the beginning of the longest period in modern times without great-power war. Because World War I had been followed just two decades later by World War II, the specter of World War III, fought with weapons that had become so destructive they could theoretically threaten all of humankind, hung over the decades of the Cold War that followed. When the United States’ atomic destruction of Hiroshima and Nagasaki compelled Japan’s immediate unconditional surrender, no one thought it conceivable that the world would see.