I enjoyed reading this list, finding myself saying "Yes!", "YESSSS!" and "Well, no...". For instance... a pen is indeed useful, but I have found a mechanical pencil to be even better. Another example: Space is now accepted as a formal 'Domain', alongside Maritime, Land, Air, Cyberpace and, dare I say it, Information Space. But those who must understand, exploit and explain Space can only very rarely "Experience the environments you may be forced to fight in someday" in the same way sailors, soldiers, airmen and even cyber gurus can do for their areas of expertise. So Space 'guardians' (or whatever we call them) have to get under the skin of their Domain in different ways. "Pluck what's useful, discard what's not"? No. It's always useful to know what others find useful. At least I now know who to ask when the only way to discover what's in that socket is to ask for your willing fingers. Even though writing straight away afterwards might be tricky, I bet you'll manage it.

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Sir, Thanks for this thoughtful response - I'm actually writing from the Colorado Springs area, where a good friend and mentor (another retired 3-star Air Force officer, Lt. Gen. ret. Chris Miller) is thinking hard and writing about that very transition - growing a professional crop of military officers to fill the Space Force. And yes, the "guardian" tagline is a hot topic. Beyond that, yes, I'll concede it is difficult for our new Space "guardians" to experience space combat beyond sci-fi films, but, then again, that's always been the case for combat of all kinds, which is why Clausewitz was so bullish on critical analysis as a way of developing (synthetic) experience without all the bloodshed. I think that's always been our greatest challenge - getting good at something we'll only ever do a handful of times (hopefully, at most). Thanks again for the note and please do stay in touch down the line. All best from this side of the Atlantic, mlc

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I had the privilege of meeting Lt Gen Chris Miller during my eye-opening time in DC between 2008 and 2012. I wish him well in that vital work and hope he can meet AVM Paul Godfrey some day (the officer who has only just been put into a new appointment that is entirely Space-related). They will get on, I have no doubt.

I have shared your work with several people here in the UK (including a recently retired 4-star who, as a Strategist himself, enjoyed reading you thoughts). But I also shared a selection of your writings with Marcus Harwood (no relation!), the man behind an American company called OND: https://methodteaming.com/. I've challenged him to compare definitions for that word 'Strategist' as he boils it down to 'on-demand creativity' (which chimes with the 27th point of your list of 50) albeit has much more to say on the matter!

The bit I have found most interesting is that, according to the way he defines 'Strategist' at least, only 8% of the population can be thus described. His theory revolves around 'Intellects' and the different types of primary and secondary intellects that come together to create a high-performing team. His company uses a range of tried-and-tested tools to examine behaviours, motivations and cognitive thinking, integrating their products to produce a fascinating three-dimensional overview of an individual's natural talents.

Anyway, I'm looking forward to what he has to say about your take on Strategists as he's a great admirer of the military but is keenly aware of how future performance needs to be even better in order to keep our nations safe. Oh how we need people who can think, who can't be accused of 'a failure of imagination', and yet who can take ordinary people with then when they come up with their ideas. Keep writing, Matt. It helps everyone, even folk far from your own shores.

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