Integrating Language and Culture   [open pdf - 460KB]

From the thesis abstract: "Foreign language proficiency and cultural understanding are critical skills that the United States Army must possess for continued success in future conflicts. Globalization has served to increase United States interaction with many other nations and transnational actors. There is a wider range of threats to national security. The Global War on Terrorism is illustrative of the increased ability of non-nation states to directly affect national security. If the United States wants to understand her enemies, anticipate threats, and respond appropriately to those threats, it is imperative that the ability of United States citizens to understand foreign languages and cultures be increased. […] The purpose of this research is to determine whether or not the United States Army has sufficient foreign language and culture skills to meet its requirements. If not, this monograph will offer possible solutions to the problem and recommendations as to what changes can be made to ensure that the Army continues to produce quality soldiers and officers who are capable of responding to the threats facing the nation. The thesis is that an understanding of language and culture are an integral part of military operations. Because language is a subset of culture, acquiring a foreign language means that a knowledge of culture is acquired at the same time. The Army must sustain an adequate corps of language trained and regionally oriented personnel in order to remain prepared to face the threats of the COE (Contemporary Operating Environment). The Intelligence Preparation of the Battlefield (IPB) framework already incorporates language and culture in the analytical process but language and culture must be incorporated Army wide into planning and operations."

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