BLUF: The new Naval Strategy Subspecialty Code includes only URLs as part of the CNO’s plan to develop a “cadre of naval strategists, with the requisite educational backgrounds and experience tours, to help formulate and carry out naval, maritime, Joint, and National strategy in the 21st century,” but “the naval strategist subspecialty may evolve over time to include elements of the Restricted Line communities”
There was some discussion on CAPT Lambert's blog (http://navycaptain-therealnavy.blogspot ... about.html
) about the new naval strategy subspecialty (http://www.public.navy.mil/bupers-npc/r ... V15011.txt
) and how the program was only open to URLs. Admittedly, this discussion resonated with me since I went through the PMM program last year (along with an intel officer and a FAO) and all three of us currently serve in the JDAL “strategy” billets required by the PMM program (the two requirements for the Strategy Subspecialty Code). So, I reached out to the POCs on the msg to get some clarification and wanted to pass the answers on. The below are the pertinent sections of the emails exchanged with the OPNAV POCs (the answers from their team are embedded in the questions I asked):
"I am writing about the recent NAVADMIN released announcing a new Naval Strategy Subspecialty Code (http://www.public.navy.mil/bupers-npc/r ... V15011.txt
). Since I completed the POL-MIL Program last year and am currently serving in a JDAL billet at the State Department, I thought that I might meet the requirements, but since this new subspecialty billet applies only to URLs, realized I would not. I can tell you (with all honesty), that the program I went through last year was INCREDIBLY valuable to me as an IW officer - and as a member of the IDC/Navy (and think it will be even MORE important for IDC officers to have this understanding in the years ahead as we continue to develop the "vision" and strategy for the IDC) - so I am trying to figure out "why" we are making this cadre of strategists that seems to exclude those of us that are not URLs and why we are allowed to complete the training/educational requirements and required to serve the follow-on "strategic" tour without being included with our fellow URLs in this new subspecialty.
‘The responses to your questions are embedded with the questions below:’
(1) Why does this new subspecialty code apply only to URLs - and not the 171X, 181X, and 183X officers that are allowed to apply for and complete both the PMM and FEF programs?
Answer: The initial emphasis for the Naval Strategy subspecialty will be on URL officers in order to develop strategists within the warfighter communities. The Foreign Area Officer and Information Dominance Corps officers to whom you refer have a vital role in support of the warfighting/URL community. The naval strategist subspecialty may evolve over time to include elements of the Restricted Line communities. The FEF and PMM programs will remain open to all URL and 171X, 181X, and 183X officers, but only the URL officers will receive the 2300 subspecialty code. The non-URL officers will receive the 2000 subspecialty code.
(2) What is the difference between the subspecialty code associated with the "new program" and the subspecialty code that HAD been applied to both URLs and RLs that completed the PMM and FEF in the past (this is according to last year's PMM announcement msg: http://www.public.navy.mil/bupers-npc/r ... V14164.txt
- "3. Naval Strategy Community. Graduates will earn the 2000P subspecialty code and serve at least one tour in a validated subspecialty billet in either politico-military affairs or strategy and policy as soon as possible, but not later than the second shore tour after completion of the PMM program.")?
Answer: The Naval Strategy subspecialty code (2300) has a specific set of Educational Skills Requirements (ESRs): (http://www.nps.edu/Images/Docs/ESRs%20f ... rategy.pdf
) which are different from and more detailed and rigorous than the ESRs assigned to the National Security Studies (2000) subspecialty: (http://www.nps.edu/Images/Docs/2000P%20 ... 20ESRs.pdf
). In addition, the Naval Strategy Subspecialty did not exist before 14 November 2014, when the Navy Manpower Analysis Center (NAVMAC) formally approved and announced the establishment of the 2300 subspecialty code.
(3) Why was a "new subspecialty code" even needed? All of these same people (plus the RLs) had already been given the other subspecialty code?
Answer: The CNO made the decision that the Navy needed a cadre of naval strategists, with the requisite educational backgrounds and experience tours, to help formulate and carry out naval, maritime, Joint, and National strategy in the 21st century. The new naval strategy subspecialty, with additional and specific educational skills requirements and with specific strategist experience tours, will serve as the Navy's pathway towards building this cadre of specialists.
(4) Do you plan to remove 171X, 181X, and 183X officers from the list of officers that can apply to the PMM and FEF programs this year (since they don't fall into the URL subspecialty cadre)? If so, why?
Answer: No, we will not remove the 171X, 181X, and 183X officers from the list of eligible officers who can participate in the PMM and FEF programs. The only difference, for the moment at least, is that the URL officers who successfully complete either the FEF or PMM programs will receive the 2300P Naval Strategy SSP code while the RL officers who successfully complete the FEF and PMM programs will receive the 2000P National Security Studies SSP code."