The History of IFPA Fletcher Conferences

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2001

National Security for a New Era: Focusing National Power

The IFPA Fletcher Conference was held on November 14–15, 2001 at Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center, Washington, D.C. The theme was National Security for a New Era: Focusing National Power.

Topics included:

  • Security visions and priorities from inter-agency and Congressional perspectives.
  • The role of military power in complex environments.
  • The requirements for homeland security and counter-terrorism.
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    Examining ways to focus the multiple instruments of national power – diplomatic, information, military, and economic.
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    The U.S. relationship with allies and coalitions.
  • Speakers
  • Tom Ridge
  • Lt General Edward G
  • The Honorable Douglas Feith
  • Paul Wolfowitz
  • General Richard B. Myers
  • The Honorable Avis T. Bohlen
  • Admiral James M. Loy 
  • Admiral Thomas H. Collins

2002

Meeting the Homeland Security Challenge

The 32nd IFPA Fletcher Conference was held March 25–26, 2002 in Washington D.C. The theme was Meeting the Homeland Security Challenge.

National Security Strategy and Policy

The 33rd IFPA Fletcher Conference was held on October 16-17, 2002 at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center, Washington, D.C. organized with the support of the military services.

Topics included:

  • Security challenges in the new security environment.
  • Strategic responses to the 21st-century security challenges.
  • The role of allies and coalition partners in U.S. planning
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    Resourcing the emerging national security strategy.
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    The challenge of Islamic extremism.
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    Asymmetric threats.
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    Transnational terrorism and non-state enemies.
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    War in the age of information.
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    Organizing intelligence and legislation to support the national security strategy.
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    Protecting expeditionary forces.
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    Reorganizing for homeland security.
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    The role of allies and coalition partners in a new security strategy.
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    U.S. basing access.
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    The U.S. relationship with Russia.
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    Essential military capabilities to support a new national security strategy.
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    Future challenges for acquisition reform.
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    Department of defense experimentation and concept development.
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    Technology concepts to support transformation.
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    Preventing technology lag in the acquisition process.
  • Speakers
  • Lt Gen Edward G.Anderson
  • Admiral Thomas H. Collins
  • General Charles G. Boyd
  • Gordon R. England
  • Dr. Jacquelyn K. Davis
  • General John M. Keane
  • General John P. Jumper
  • Mr. Marshall Billingslea

2003

Security Planning and Military Transformation after Iraqi Freedom

34th IFPA Fletcher Conference was held on December 2–3, 2003 at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Building, Washington D.C. The theme was Security Planning and Military Transformation after Iraqi Freedom.

Topics included:

  • The changing post-9/11 context of security planning.
  • Assuring, dissuading, and deterring 21st-century threats.
  • Issues shaping the 2005 QDR process.
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    Combatant commands – implementing national defense strategies.
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    Transformation for the new era: Service perspectives.
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    Lessons learned from Operation Iraqi Freedom and the War on Terrorism.
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    Coalition operations and alliance transformation.
  • Speakers
  • Lt Gen Edward G.Anderson
  • Thomas J. Barrett
  • General Peter J. Schoomaker
  • Mr. Tony Brenton
  • Vice Admiral Kevin P. Green
  • General Richard B. Myers
  • General James T. Hill
  • Mr. Ovidiu Dranga

2004

Planning for and Responding to Threats to the U.S. Homeland

The 35th IFPA-Fletcher Conference was held on October 28–29, 2004 at The Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center, Washington, D.C. The theme was Planning for and Responding to Threats to the U.S. Homeland.

Topics included:

  • Assessing homeland security/defense since 9/11 and identifying new issues. Anticipating and assessing U.S. vulnerabilities as part of a comprehensive strategy for homeland security/defense.
  • Protecting critical infrastructure protection, cyberspace security, bioterrorism, and identifying and coping with future threats.
  • Relating homeland defense to homeland security and bureaucratic lines of authority and responsibility.
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    Identifying essential capabilities for homeland defense/security such as securing the skies, protecting maritime approaches, defending against missile attacks, and providing border protection.
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    Anticipating and defending against bioterrorism and identifying the respective roles of federal, state, local, and private sector capabilities.
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    Understanding the requirements for threat monitoring and incident assessment, emergency response and support, including critical surge capabilities, consequence management, legal and civil-military action and cooperation, and public health issues.
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    Strengthening international cooperation including information/intelligence coordination, exchange, and integration.
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    Enhancing cooperation with Canada, Mexico, and NATO, protecting transnational physical and cyber infrastructure, and increasing the security of global transportation systems and commerce.
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    Identifying industry perspectives on emerging technologies for homeland security/defense.

Speakers and participants from the Executive Branch, the military services, U.S. Combatant Commands, the intelligence community, Congress, federal, state, and local government offices and agencies, U.S. allies, industry, the academic community, and the media will participate.

  • Speakers
  • Lt Gen Edward G.Anderson
  • Major Gen Timothy J. Lowenberg
  • Vice Admiral Terry Cross
  • Dr. Graham T. Allison, Jr
  • Admiral James M. Loy, USCG (Ret.)
  • Lt General H. Steven Blum
  • Brig. Gen. Lloyd E. Dodd
  • Dr. Jacquelyn K. Davis

2005

Nuclear and Non-Nuclear Forces in 21st-Century Deterrence

The 36th Annual IFPA Fletcher Conference was held on December 14–15, 2005 at the Grand Hyatt Washington Hotel in Washington, D.C. The theme was Implementing the New Triad: Nuclear and Non-Nuclear Forces in 21st-Century Deterrence.

The conference examined operational requirements for bringing the three basic elements of the New Triad together. 

The New Triad consists of:

  • Nuclear and non-nuclear offensive strike forces;
  • Active and passive defenses, including missile defense;  
  • Revitalized and responsive research and development and defense-industrial infrastructure to enable the United States to adapt quickly to evolving threats.

The cosponsors of the conference included U.S. Strategic Command, the National Nuclear Security Administration of the Department of Energy, the Defense Threat Reduction Agency, and the Office of the Secretary of Defense (Policy). 

  • Speakers
  • Dr. Robert B. Barker
  • The Hon. Linton F. Brooks
  • General James E. Cartwright
  • Dr. Fred Iklé
  • Ambassador Henry Cooper
  • Brigadier Gen Richard Y. Newton
  • The Hon. J.D. Crouch II
  • Ms. Elaine Bunn

2006

No Conference Held This Year.

2007

A New Maritime Strategy for 21st-Century National Security

The 37th IFPA-Fletcher Conference was held on September 26–27, 2007 at The Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center Washington, D.C. The theme was A New Maritime Strategy for 21st-Century National Security.

The conference brought together a unique mix of expertise from the government, private sector, civilian and military communities and think tanks. The expertise came from the United States and abroad.

​Topics included:

  • The new multidimensional security setting that encompasses the simultaneous need to facilitate commerce in an era of globalization, while halting illicit traffic in weapons and preventing terrorist operations.
  • Implications of the new security setting for 21st-century maritime capabilities, including force structure, procurement, education and training, and modernization priorities for the U.S. Navy.
  • Core mission capabilities, such as sea lane protection, freedom of the seas, support for land operations, interdiction, and forward presence as a basis for dissuasion, deterrence, and crisis management.
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    New mission areas, including WMD interdiction, missile defense, cyber-operations, special operations, humanitarian/disaster relief and assistance, and counterterrorism operations on the high seas.
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    Enhancing cooperation between the Navy and the Coast Guard and leveraging the Navy’s partnership with the U.S. Marine Corps and other services.
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    Regional/theater priorities as viewed by major combatant commands and their implications.
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    Developing enhanced cooperative relationships with international partners and the private sector, from shipping companies to port authorities, in support of maritime security based on greater maritime domain awareness.
  • Speakers
  • Rear Admiral William E. Landay III
  • Rear Admiral Dan W. Davenport
  • Mr. Stephen M. Carmel
  • Lt Gen James F. Amos
  • Lt Gen Robert R. Blackman
  • Commodore Vincenzo E.B. Di Pietro
  • Mr. Shawn J. Dilles
  • Rear Admiral Carlton Jewett

2008

No Conference Held This Year.

2009

No Conference Held This Year.

2010

Air, Space, & Cyberspace Power in the 21st Century

38th IFPA Fletcher Conference January 20–21, 2010 at Washington, D.C. The theme was Air, Space, and Cyberspace Power in the 21st-Century.

Topics included:

  • Technology proliferation.
  • The future of nuclear and non-nuclear strategic deterrence.
  • Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) procurement and modernization of dual-capable aircraft (DCA).
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    The potential for strategic surprise.
  • Speakers
  • Robert L. Pfaltzgraff, Jr.
  • Dr. Robert G. Joseph
  • The Honorable William J. Lynn III
  • Dr. Richard H. Shultz, Jr
  • General Norton A. Schwartz
  • Dr. Robert J. Hermann
  • Dr. Paul Bracken
  • Timothy L. Thomas

2011

The Marine Corps:
America's Expeditionary Force in Readiness

The 39th IFPA-Fletcher Conference was held on April 14–15, 2011 at Marriott at Metro Center Washington, D.C. and over 250 participants attended. The theme was The Marine Corps: America's Expeditionary Force in Readiness.

Topics included:

  • Warfighting concepts, access issues, and expeditionary operations.
  • Joint, interagency, inter-governmental and non-governmental relationships.
  • Cyber warfare and the vulnerability of information-based systems and operations.
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    Service leadership and combatant command perspectives on engagement, access, crisis prevention, conflict management, and support to civil authorities.
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    Developing an affordable, agile, and responsive USMC force structure.
  • Speakers
  • Gen James L. Jones (Ret.)
  • Maj Gen (Sel) Juan G. Ayala
  • Gen Joseph Dunford, Jr
  • Admiral Jonathan W. Greenert
  • MG Michael D. Jones
  • Mr. Kurt Amend
  • Dr. Richard H. Solomon
  • Lt Gen George Flynn

2012

No Conference Held This Year.

2013

Positioning Special Operations Forces for Global Challenges

The 40th IFPA Fletcher Conference was held on June 5–6, 2013 held at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center in downtown Washington, D.C. The theme was Positioning Special Operations Forces for Global Challenges.

The meeting included officials from the U.S. and partner countries, senior military commanders, Congressional leaders, academic-policy specialists and other non-governmental experts for a two-day exchange on the growing importance of special operations forces (SOF) for 21st-century security. 

Topics included:

  • The role of SOF in combatting transnational threats.
  • Enhancing the ability of USSOCOM and the Geographic Combatant Commands (GCCs) to work with allies and partners to build essential SOF capabilities.
  • New opportunities for USSOCOM and the Department of Defense (DoD) to collaborate with the broader U.S. ‘whole of government’ community, the private sector, intergovernmental organizations (IGOs), non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and other civil and military partners to fashion a more robust SOF network to meet global challenges.
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    How best to leverage SOF capabilities as a key tool for crisis prevention and crisis response in an era of tighter defense budgets and post-Afghanistan military downsizing and force restructuring.
  • Speakers
  • Ambassador Frederick Rick Barton
  • Major General Yaacob Ayish
  • Rear Admiral Robert P. Girrier
  • Jorge Enrique Bedoya Vizcaya
  • Major General Christophe Gomart
  • The Honorable Ashton B. Carter
  • Dr. Stephen J. Flanagan
  • Lt Gen Michael T. Flynn