I’ve talked about the importance of recommitting ourselves to the Profession of Arms through my Letter to the Force, Strategic Direction to the Joint Force, and Profession of Arms white paper. It’s central to our profession that we continue to examine and build the knowledge, skills, and attributes that define us as we develop tomorrow’s leaders and prepare for Joint Force 2020.
I believe one of the best ways to prepare for the future is through a focused commitment to a personal course of reading, critical thought and reflection. I’ve selected 18 books as a starting point to deepen our understanding of the value and ethos of our military profession and service cultures, to promote innovative thinking as we face a dynamic future, and to facilitate discussion on key issues we face as a military and as a nation.
I challenge you to read these books with a critical eye. Challenge assumptions, broaden your perspectives, and look for lessons to apply yourself and to your units. I also ask you contribute to this list through suggestions and dialogue. Let’s use this as an opportunity to learn and grow as a Joint Force.