Speaker Series Videos






 November 2019
November 13, 2019 — On Wednesday, 13 November 2019, Dr. David Fields spoke on "How Korea was Divided and Why It Still Matters: The Pre-1945 Origins of the Division of Korea that Continues to Haunt US-ROK Relations Today."
 October 2019
October 28, 2019 — On Monday, 28 October 2019, Dr. Robert Watson spoke on "The Sinking of the SS Cap Arcona and the Last Holocaust Victims of World War II."
 June 2019
June 20, 2019 — On Thursday, 20 June 2019, Dr. David Kieran spoke on "Signature Wounds: The Untold Story of the Military's Mental Health Crisis."
 May 2019
May 20, 2019 — On Monday, 20 May 2019 at 1200 in room B6 of the Pentagon Library and Conference Center, the OSD Historical Office hosted a Speaker Series event featuring Dr. Sean McFate. He spoke on "The New Rules of War: Victory in the Age of Durable Disorder."
 April 2019
April 9, 2019 — On Tuesday, 9 April 2019, Dr. Jennifer Miller spoke on "Rearming Japan: Cold War Visions of Democracy and Military Power."
 March 2019
March 19, 2019 — On Tuesday, 19 March 2019, Dr. Scott Mobley spoke on "Progressives in Navy Blue: Reforging the U.S. Naval Profession for Peer-to-Peer Competition, 1873-1898."
 July 2018
July 16 2018 — On Monday, 16 July 2018, Dr. Forrest Marion and former Assistant Secretary of Defense for Reserve Affairs Lt. Gen. Dennis McCarthy, USCMR (Ret.) spoke on their book, Forging a Total Force: The Evolution of the Guard and Reserve.
May 2018
May 22, 2018 — On Tuesday, 22 May 2018, Dr. Mara Karlin spoke on "Building Militaries in Fragile States: Challenges for the United States."
January 2018
January  11, 2018 — On Thursday, 11 January 2018, Max Boot spoke on "Edward Lansdale's Vietnam: Lessons for Afghanistan and Iraq."
November 2017
November 8, 2017 — On Wednesday, 8 November 2017, Rachel Levandoski spoke on "War, Psychological Trauma, and the American Medical Experience in World War I."
September 2017
September 20, 2017 — On Wednesday, 20 September 2017, Dr. Edward C. Keefer spoke on his book, Harold Brown: Offsetting the Soviet Military Challenge, 1977-1981.
July 2017
July 25, 2017 — On Tuesday, 25 July 2017, Dr. Eliot A. Cohen spoke on his book, The Big Stick.
May 2017
May 24, 2017 — On Wednesday, 24 May 2017, Dr. Michael Neiberg spoke on "The Path to War: U.S. Entry into World War I."
April 2017
April 25, 2017 — On Tuesday, 25 April 2017, Dr. Thomas Boghardt, Dr. Robert Doughty, and Dr. Jennifer Keene spoke on "Perspectives on American Entry into World War I."
February 2017
February 28, 2017 — On Tuesday, 28 February 2017, Dr. Frank Gavin spoke on "Rethinking the History of the Nuclear Age."
December 2016
December 6, 2016 — On Tuesday, 6 December 2016, former Secretary of Defense William Perry spoke about his memoir, My Journey at the Nuclear Brink. Former Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Michele Flournoy moderated the discussion.
December 2016
December 1, 2016 — On Thursday, 1 December 2016, Annette Amerman spoke on "Marines at Belleau Woods."
November 2016
November 3, 2016 — On Thursday, 3 November 2016, Kevin Hymel spoke on "Patton's Photos: War As He Saw It. "
October 2016
October 6, 2016 — On Thursday, 6 October 2016, Dr. Brian Linn spoke on Elvis's Army: Military Transformation in the 1950s."
May 2016
May 26, 2016 — On Thursday, 26 May 2016, Dr. Hal Brands spoke on "American Grand Strategy Today: Lessons from the Cold War."
March 2016
March 3, 2016 — On Thursday, 3 March 2016, Dr. Mark Clodfelter, Professor of Military Strategy at the National War College, spoke on air combat operations during the Vietnam War.
January 2016
January 21, 2016 — On Thursday, 21 January 2016, Dr. John Sherwood of the Naval History and Heritage Command spoke on the development and evolution of riverine warfare up to the Tet Offensive during the Vietnam War.
November 2015
November 17, 2015 — On Tuesday, 17 November 2015, Dr. Andrew Krepinevich and Barry Watts discussed the Office of Net Assessment and Andy Marshall's role in shaping American defense strategy. The Director of Net Assessment, James Baker, provided introductory remarks.


July 2015
July 13, 2015 — On Monday, 13 July 2015, the Office of the Secretary of Defense Historical Office hosted a roundtable discussion and book launch for "Melvin Laird and the Foundation of the Post-Vietnam Military, 1969-1973," by Dr. Richard Hunt.


February 2015
February 24, 2015 — On Tuesday, February 24, 2015, Dr. Max Paul Friedman, Professor of History at American University, gave a talk entitled "FRENchEMIES, France and the U.S.: Junior Partner or Oldest Enemy?"


July 2014
July 25, 2014 — On Friday, July 25th, Dr. Michael Epkenhans of the Center for Military History of the German Armed Forces gave a talk entitled "The Origins and Beginning of the First World War."


April 2014
April 30, 2014 — On Wednesday, April 30th, the OSD Historical Office hosted a panel discussion at the National Defense University to mark the publication of the newest volume in the History of Acquisition in the Department of Defense series, Adapting to Flexible Response, 1960-1968. The panel featured the volume's author, Dr. Walter S. Poole and former Secretary of Defense Harold Brown, as well as Dr. Linda S. Brandt of NDU's Eisenhower School for National Security and Resource Strategy.



April 2014
April 16, 2014 — On April 16th, Dr. Clarence Anderegg, Director of Air Force history and Museum Policies and Programs, delivered a talk to a Pentagon audience entitled “Phantoms to Eagles: How the U.S. Air Force Changed After Vietnam.” Dr. Anderegg is a thirty-year Air Force veteran, and flew more than 170 missions in the Vietnam War. He is the author of The Ash Warriors and Sierra Hotel.



March 2014
March 25, 2014 — On March 25th, Dr. Adam Seipp of Texas A&M University delivered a talk to a Pentagon audience entitled “Conquerors, Occupiers, Allies: The American Occupation of Germany, 1945-49.” Dr. Seipp specializes in post-World War II Europe, and, more specifically, on war and social change. In 2013, he published Strangers in the Wild Place: Refugees, Americans, and a German Town, 1945-1952 (Indiana University Press).



 February 2014
February 25, 2014 — On February 25th, Dr. Isaac Hampton II (Command Historian, U.S. Army South, San Antonio, Texas) delivered a talk to a Pentagon audience entitled “The Journey of African American Officers Through the Vietnam Era.” Dr. Hampton specializes in U.S. Army activity in Latin America and the Caribbean, and in the history of African American officers in the U.S. Armed Forces. In 2013, he published The Black Officer Corps: A History of Black Military Advancement From Integration Through Vietnam (Routledge, 2013).



 November 2013
November 25, 2013 — Dr. Peter Hahn (Professor and Chair of the Department of History at Ohio State University) delivered a talk to a Pentagon audience entitled “An Oasis or a Mirage? The U.S. Vision for the Arab-Israeli Peace Process Since the Cold War.” Dr. Hahn specializes in U.S. foreign relations in the Middle East since 1940. His publications include Missions Accomplished?: The United States and Iraq since World War I (Oxford University Press, 2011); Historical Dictionary of U.S.-Middle East Relations (Rowman and Littlefield, 2007); Crisis and Crossfire: The United States and the Middle East since 1945 (Potomac Books, 2005); Caught in the Middle East: U.S. Policy Toward the Arab-Israeli Conflict, 1945-1961 (University of North Carolina Press, 2004); Empire and Revolution: The United States and the Third World Since 1945 (co-edited with Mary Ann Heiss, Ohio State University Press, 2001); and The United States, Great Britain, and Egypt, 1945-1956: Strategy and Diplomacy in the Early Cold War (University of North Carolina Press, 1991).



July 2013

July 1, 2013 — Dr. Reardon is the George Winfree Professor of American History at Penn State University. She specializes in the Civil War and the Vietnam War eras and focuses on the evolution of professional military education, the development of military doctrine, and military theory. Professor Reardon is actively involved in professional military education and conducts staff rides to Civil War battlefields and open-air classrooms to discuss the art of war in historical context. She has also taught at the U.S. Army War College, the Marine Corps Command and Staff College, and the U.S. Military Academy.

Dr. Reardon is the author of Solders and Scholars (1990), Pickett's Charge in History and Memory (1997), and Launch the Intruders: A Naval Squadron in the Vietnam War, 1972 (2009). Her current project is an analysis of the military history of the Civil War's Eastern theater.




June 2013

June 17, 2013 — Paul A. Gilje is a George Lynn Cross Research Professor in the Department of History at the University of Oklahoma. Dr. Gilje earned his M.A. and Ph.D. from Brown University and is a specialist in American History with a focus on the early republic. He is the author of The Road to Mobocracy: Popular Disorder in New York City, 1763-1834; Riots in America; Liberty on the Waterfront and The Making of the American Republic, 1763-1815. Liberty on the Waterfront received the 2004 Society for Historians of the Early American Republic Best Book Prize and the 2004 North American Society for Oceanic History John Lyman Book Award in the category of United States Maritime History.




May 2013

May 21, 2013 — Dr. David Crist is a senior historian for the Defense Department and a special advisor to senior officials in the U.S. government on the Middle East. Crist is an officer in the Marine Corps Reserve and served two tours with special operations forces in Afghanistan and Iraq. His previous publications include Gulf of Conflict: A History of U.S.-Iranian Confrontation at Sea (2009). He holds a B.A. from the University of Virginia and a master's and doctorate in Middle Eastern history from Florida State University.




April 2013

April 23, 2013 — Max Boot is currently the Jeane J. Kirkpatrick senior fellow in National Security Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) and a contributing editor to the Weekly Standard and the Los Angeles Times. Before joining the CFR, Boot worked eight years as a writer and editor at the Wall Street Journal, and from 1992–1994 he was an editor and writer for the Christian Science Monitor. He has also served as an advisor to U.S. commanders in Iraq and Afghanistan and as a senior foreign policy advisor to the John McCain and Mitt Romney's presidential campaigns. Mr. Boot is the author of three books including The Savage Wars of Peace: Small Wars and the Rise of American Power (2003); War Made New: Technology, Warfare, and the Course of History 1500 to Today (2006); and Invisible Armies: An Epic History of Guerrilla Warfare from Ancient Times to the Present (2013).




February 2013

February 4, 2013 — Dr. Edward L. Ayers is currently the President of the University of Richmond and a historian specializing in the Antebellum South. Prior to his appointment at the University of Richmond, Dr. Ayers was a professor at the University of Virginia from 1980–2007 and served as the Buckner W. Clay Dean of the College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences from 2001–2007. He is the author and editor of 12 books, including "In the Presence of Mine Enemies: War in the Heart of America, 1859–1863," winner of the Bancroft Prize and The Promise of the New South finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, and National Book Award. Dr. Ayers is also an editor for the Papers of Abraham Lincoln and is the co-host of "BackStory with the American History Guys," a weekly radio show that examines the historical roots of contemporary issues.




January 2013

January 9, 2013 — National Park Service Historian Frank O'Reilly will discuss the Battle of Fredericksburg at the next Department of Defense History Speaker Series event on Wednesday January 9, 2013. Mr. O'Reilly has for many years been an interpreter and historian at Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park, and his familiarity with the grounds, tactics, and order of battle provides him with considerable knowledge of the events that occurred in December 1862. Although the Battle of Fredericksburg is remembered for the massacre of Union soldiers at Marye's Heights, Mr. O'Reilly suggests that the fighting between General Stonewall Jackson and Union Generals George G. Meade and John Gibbon was the battle's most decisive, as the Union broke the Confederate lines. Mr. O'Reilly's publications include Stonewall Jackson at Fredericksburg and The Fredericksburg Campaign: Winter War on the Rappahannock, which won the 2002 Capital District Book Award, the James I. Robinson, Jr., Book Award, the Daniel Laney Book Award, and the Richard Barksdale Harwell Book Award. Currently, Mr. O'Reilly is researching the Seven Days Campaign and the Battle of Malvern Hill.




September 2012

September 27, 2012 — Dr. Ed Marolda is a faculty member at Georgetown University and the former Senior Historian of the U.S. Navy. He holds a Ph.D. in history from The George Washington University and served as a U.S. Army officer during the Vietnam War. He has authored, coauthored, or edited twelve books on U.S. naval history. Dr. Marolda will discuss the impact of U.S. maritime power on the modern history of Asia based on his Ready Seapower: a History of the U.S. Seventh Fleet, recently published by the Naval History and Heritage Command. Since its birth in World War II, the Seventh Fleet has served as one of the primary instruments of U.S. foreign policy in the vital but volatile region, buttressed America's Far Eastern alliances, protected oceangoing commerce, and battled America's foes in World War II, Korea, Vietnam, and the Arabian Gulf. Today, and indeed throughout the late 20th and early 21st centuries, the fleet has also worked to deter armed aggression and to defeat piracy, terrorism, and weapons' proliferation. Fleet units have often acted quickly to help Asian peoples recover from typhoons, volcanoes, tsunamis, and other natural disasters. There will be time for questions and audience participation.




August 2012

August 28, 2012 — Dr. Andy Birtle is chief of the Military Operations Branch at the Army Center of Military History. He is the author of U.S. Army Counterinsurgency and Contingency Operations Doctrine, 1860-1941 and a companion volume covering the period 1942-1976, and is currently writing the Army’s official history of its advisory program in Vietnam covering 1961-1965. General Anthony Zinni’s 35 years of service in the Marine Corps included two tours in Vietnam, as a company commander and as an advisor to a Vietnamese Marine Corps battalion. His last active duty billet was Commander in Chief of U.S. Central Command from 1997 to 2000. Dr. James Willbanks retired from the Army as a Lieutenant Colonel with twenty-three years service as an Infantry officer in various assignments, to include a tour as an advisor with a South Vietnamese infantry regiment during the 1972 North Vietnamese Easter Offensive. He has been on the faculty at the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College since 1992. His published books include Abandoning Vietnam; The Battle of An Loc and The Tet Offensive: A Concise History. Dr. Birtle will open the program with a brief overview of the U.S. advisory effort in Vietnam. General Zinni and Dr. Willbanks will then talk about their experiences as advisors in Vietnam, any conclusions they drew from that experience about the overall advisory effort, and their observations that might be relevant to the recent effort in Iraq and the current effort in Afghanistan.




June 2012

June 15, 2012 — Robert Krick, retired Chief Historian for the Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park, will give a presentation which will focus on "Stonewall" Jackson's initial operations in Virginia's Shenandoah Valley in 1862, and which explain how his success there catapulted him to national and international prominence. Jackson's highly drilled infantrymen covered ground so fast in moving from one battle to the next that they soon were dubbed "foot cavalry." Despite being outnumbered 3 to 1, the Confederate general maneuvered his forces skillfully and made them appear to be numerically much stronger. As Krick will discuss, Jackson would prove to be one of the most effective commanders for the South until he died in action at the Battle of Chancellorsville in May 1863.




April 2012

April 11, 2012 — Dr. Ethan Rafuse, a widely published author on the Civil War, will give the inaugural presentation of the DoD Historical Speaker Series at 1130 on 11 April in the Pentagon Auditorium. His talk will assess the opening months of the conflict President Lincoln called "A People's Contest." The ongoing program is planned and coordinated by the historical offices of OSD, the Joint Staff, and the four military services. A primary theme will be the commemoration of our nation’s past conflicts, to include the 200th anniversary of the War of 1812 (1812–1815), the 150th anniversary of the Civil War (1861–1865), the 100th anniversary of World War I (1914–1918), and the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War (1956–1975).