When Ash Carter Crashed Davos

Posted January 28, 2016 at 4:00am



Past the luxury shops, black cars, and pop-up spaces opened on tiny ski-village streets by iconic banks and technology giants, U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter came to the World Economic Forum with dual messages. One for world leaders on this global stage: get into the fight against the Islamic State. And a second for corporate leaders: join forces with the Pentagon and get into the business of fighting for something bigger,” Defense One reports.  

“In a way, Carter’s Davos mission encapsulates his probable legacy as President Barack Obama’s final defense secretary. The methodical technologist and government servant who rose through the political-appointee ranks has about one year left to make his mark on the job. Over the past few months, as Secretary of State John Kerry has focused on Iran, Carter has become Obama’s point-man for the war on ISIS . Ordered to “accelerate” the U.S.-led campaign, Carter has since September tried to cadge additional forces and finances from America’s allies. On this European swing, he stopped first in Paris, where attacks in November renewed the continent’s fighting mood. There he laid out his plan to key coalition partners: follow December’s liberation of Ramadi with one-two punch invasions of Mosul in Iraq and Raqqa in Syria. He also announced a Brussels conference next month where he expects at least 26 nations to come with additional offerings.”  

“But Carter also wants to put the Pentagon on a firmer footing as a government agency for the new era of terrorism, massive employer of personnel, and driver of technology. His solution: lure the world’s most innovative minds, firms, and business leaders to work with the federal behemoth.”