Editor’s note: We’re taking a week off from our War Books series and featuring the most watched videos of our recent speakers at MWI-hosted events. Enjoy!


The Modern War Institute regularly brings experts, practitioners, and other fascinating speakers to West Point to speak to cadets and faculty. We’ve recently begun posting videos of these events for those of you who have an interest in modern war but aren’t part of the local West Point community. Here are our most watched videos.

Mash Gessen Discusses How to Read Vladimir Putin

On October 21, 2016, Russian and American journalist Masha Gessen spoke at West Point about how the West should understand Vladimir Putin, his intentions, and Russia under his leadership.

Medal of Honor Recipient Staff Sgt. (Ret) Ryan Pitts Talks about the Battle of Wanat

Staff Sgt. (Ret) Ryan Pitts speaks about the 2008 Battle of Wanat in eastern Afghanistan’s Nuristan province, and his actions during the intense fight, for which he received the Medal of Honor.

Max Brooks on the Courage to Champion Creativity in the Military

Max Brooks, bestselling author of World War Z, speaks at West Point on why creativity is vital to success on the modern battlefield.

Eliot Cohen at MWI’s War Studies Conference

On November 15, 2016, Dr. Eliot Cohen delivered a keynote speech to attendees of MWI’s inaugural War Studies Conference. The theme of the conference was “Reassessing Deterrence in the 21st Century.”

Dennis Rodman on Alternative Tools of Diplomacy

On March 3, 2017, MWI hosted a panel discussion on “alternative tools of diplomacy.” Panel participants included former NBA all-star Dennis Rodman, Columbia University’s Dr. Joseph Terwilliger, and Chris Volo, all of whom have traveled to North Korea and met North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un.

Andrew Bacevich Traces the History of America’s Middle East Policy

On September 26, 2016, MWI Adjunct Scholar Andrew Bacevich spoke at West Point, criticizing US interventionism in the Middle East and tracing the history of increased militarization of American policy back to the Carter Doctrine.