We think of violence usually as a personal and individual thing. War, “Diplomacy by other means” is institutional violence. Stavridis, a senior military officer, is an expert on force projection. His calling for dialogue and collaboration may then be surprising to some. He sees this as the most effective way to reduce risk.

Why you should listen:

In the world of security, says James Stavridis, “we are generally focused on risk. But I think we should spend a bit of our most precious resource — time — on thinking about and developing opportunities.” The first US Navy officer to hold the positions of Commander of the US European Command (USEUCOM) and of NATO’s Supreme Allied Commander Europe (SACEUR), Stavridis has been advocating the opportunities perspective for a long time. He sees dialogue and collaboration — between nations, and between public and private sectors — as key to the future of security. As a Navy officer, he thinks deeply about protecting the value of our “global commons.” And he’s a rare high-ranking military officer who tweets and blogs.

Who is he:

He has led the recent military effort in Libya, among other NATO engagements. Previously Stavridis commanded US Southern Command in Miami, focused on Latin America and the Caribbean.


  1. What does Stavridis mean by “open source security”?
  1. Stavridis gives several examples of “walls” not working. Give three examples.
  1. Stavridis shows several examples of non-nation based threats to global security. Give one example and explain why you think it is a serious threat
  1. What are the six most populous nations according to Stavridis?
  1. Stavridis identifies three key groups that have to be working in concert to create “open source security”. What are these groups? Give one example of this cooperation.
  1. He speaks of the need for a traditional, effective military, but says that it should not be used as if it were off-on like a switch, but more like a rheostat. Explain what he meant by this and give one of his examples.

A Navy Admiral’s thoughts on global security with James Stavridis


You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>