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Documents 7 through 9

7. The Naval War College Review

Information Service for Officers, vol.1, no. 1.

October 1948

In 1948, the Chief of Naval Personnel proposed that important lectures from the service colleges be compiled, published, and distributed for the benefit of officers at or above the rank of commander.  In response, the Naval War College established the Information Service for Officers.  The original publication was intended to include the best lectures from not only the Naval War College, but also the National War College, Industrial College of the Armed Forces, and the Armed Forces Staff College.  This broader effort however never materialized, and the publication came to reflect the work of the Naval War College alone.  In September 1952, the publication was renamed The Naval War College Review.  The Review evolved in time from a compendium of lectures into an academic journal which continues to publish articles on maritime issues by scholars at the Naval War College and from around the world.

8. Guest Lecturers

George Kennan lecture on U.S. foreign policy.

11 October 1948

George Kennan – one of the architects of U.S. foreign policy during the Cold War – gave this lecture to Naval War College students in the fall of 1948.  Kennan’s talk was part of a long tradition of having the foremost experts from outside of the College give lectures to complement the curriculum.  Guest lecturers have included civilian leaders, including Secretaries of State and Defense.  They have included military leaders, with names like Nimitz, Rickover, LeMay, and Petraeus.  They have included the leading historians, diplomats, economists, and legal scholars of their day.  To broaden the perspectives of students, people like the pacifist Moorfield Storey and the author Herman Wouk have been invited to give lectures as well.

9. Navy Reading

A Guide for Professional Reading for Officers.

August 1949

The Naval War College launched A Guide for Professional Reading for Officers in August 1949.  Like the correspondence school and the Information Service for Officers, the annual guide was meant to extend the benefits of a Naval War College education beyond the confines of Newport.  The first guide recommended books on military history, economics and international affairs, as well as leadership and communication skills.  It however was not the first such resource provided by the College.  The Naval War College Library began issuing a monthly library bulletin in 1922 which contained recommended readings and book reviews.  Initially issued only to students and staff, the bulletin became such a valued resource that alumni, other commands, the other service colleges, and the Chief of Naval Operations requested that they receive copies.  The roots of today’s Chief of Naval Operations Professional Reading Program, which the Naval War College administers, trace back to these earlier efforts.