About Cmdr. Daniel Dolan, USN (Retired)

Cmdr. Dolan teaches Strategy & War with the Naval War College’s Distance Education program, and history as an adjunct professor at the University of Maine. He is a former EP-3E/Special mission P-3 naval flight officer, and frequent contributor to USNI News and Proceedings.


Recent Posts By the Author


Analysis: Iran's Latest Round of Maritime Brinksmanship

Analysis: Iran’s Latest Round of Maritime Brinksmanship

An undated picture of a Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps Navy patrol craft.

An undated picture of a Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps Navy patrol craft.

Iran’s recent seizure and release of the Marshall Islands flagged M/V Maersk Tigris could be what Iran claims it is, a reaction to a decade-long dispute over shipping containers that were diverted to the UAE and never delivered to Iran. More likely however, it is a thinly veiled attempt at brinkmanship to remind the United States of the kind of trouble that Iran can stir up in the Strait of Hormuz. Read More

Opinion: Playing Deal or No Deal with Iran

Opinion: Playing Deal or No Deal with Iran

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry shakes hands with Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif as he arrives at a hotel in Vienna, Austria, on July 14, 2014, for a second day of meetings about the future of his country's nuclear program. US State Dept. Photo

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry shakes hands with Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif as he arrives at a hotel in Vienna, Austria, on July 14, 2014, for a second day of meetings about the future of his country’s nuclear program. US State Dept. Photo

The Art of War says “Know the enemy and know yourself; in a hundred battles you will never be in peril.” Forty-seven members of the U.S. Senate seemed to have forgotten this timeless truth from the ancient war theorist Sun Tzu. Examining how well we know the enemy (Iran), and how well we know ourselves, is always a good place to start before taking actions that many believe are setting a course for war. Read More

Opinion: The End of America’s War in Afghanistan?

Opinion: The End of America’s War in Afghanistan?

General John Campbell, commander of NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) on Dec. 28, 2014. via Reuters

General John Campbell, commander of NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) on Dec. 28, 2014. via Reuters

All Americans remember where they were when they learned about the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, but few Americans noticed—and fewer seemed to care—when Gen. John Campbell rolled up the International Security Afghanistan Force (ISAF) battle flag on Dec. 28. That ceremonial act officially and symbolically ended the ISAF combat mission in Afghanistan. Read More

Opinion: A Campaign With No Name

Opinion: A Campaign With No Name

An F/A-18C Hornet assigned to the Valions of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 15 takes off from the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush (CVN-77). US Navy Photo

An F/A-18C Hornet assigned to the Valions of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 15 takes off from the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush (CVN-77). US Navy Photo

The first Iraq War was called Operation Desert Storm, the second Iraq war was called Operation Iraqi Freedom, but what will the third Iraq war be called? Read More

Opinion: Searching for a Strategy to Defeat ISIS

Opinion: Searching for a Strategy to Defeat ISIS

An undated photo of an ISIS fighter.

An undated photo of an ISIS fighter.

The news on the crisis with Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS or ISIL) is moving so fast that last week’s top story on the situation now seems like ancient history. Last week global news outlets repeatedly made the point that by fighting to defeat ISIS, the United States is, by default, aiding the regime of Bashar al Assad in Syria. Read More