SOCOM to partner with Yale?

Marauder06

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Anyone heard anything about this?

http://yaledailynews.com/blog/2013/01/28/dept-of-defense-training-center-proposed/

http://yaleherald.com/news-and-features/yale-welcomes-special-ops/



The closest most Americans come to the U.S. Special Operations Command is through action movies or headlines splashed across newspapers revealing covert operations after they occur.

But if the Department of Psychiatry at the Yale School of Medicine opens a training center with the U.S. Army Special Operations Command, Yale students and professors may share a campus with soldiers who have come to New Haven to develop their interviewing skills.

Charles Morgan, a psychiatry professor at the Yale School of Medicine who has worked with the government on scientific research in the past, said the proposed center — the USSOCOM Center of Excellence for Operational Neuroscience — remains in the development phase because it is still under contractual negotiation. The training center, which would be a joint venture between the Department of Defense and the University, would serve as an educational institution to teach soldiers the skills to read and question people. If approved, the center could open as early as April, added Morgan, who said he would direct the program and teach interviewing to soldiers.

“[The Center would function] really to build a cadre, or cohort or group of people who are skilled in interviewing so they can move forward and train other people,” Morgan said. “They call it a force multiplier in the military.”

While the funding for the center would come entirely from a $1.8 million grant Morgan received from the Department of Defense to establish a site for teaching, conducting research and advising, classes will take place in Yale facilities and instructors may come from within the University faculty.

Morgan said the Yale Office of Grant and Contract Administration is working with the Psychiatry Department to finish paperwork securing the grant funding, which was delayed due to both congressional budget issues and the need for more time to work out funding for administrative expenses.

The Center’s annual schedule will be broken into trimesters, with two one-week “teaching modules” focused on a specific subject per trimester. Morgan said he hopes to teach up to 20 soldiers per trimester with three instructors, including himself. The curriculum aims to provide soldiers with interpersonal skills such as ways to determine whether scientists are offering legitimate benefits when offering to sell the Army products, Morgan said.
In addition to the educational component, Morgan said he wants the center to include a “very focused” science research project roughly every year and a half on topics such as the ability to sustain focus under stress and other concerns of the military. Morgan added that these research activities are not covered by the $1.8 million grant, and would require future funding.

The Center would also serve as an advisory body for the Army by providing reviews of new technologies as they relate to enhancing military function, such as which laboratories show promising research results in topics like improving people’s sleep, he added.

Besides supporting Special Operations Commands in the military, Morgan said the flow of military personnel and soldiers into New Haven for classes with the Center would give members of the Yale community a chance to meet people who have had a “very different career” than they have.

“In my profession, there are lots of doctors who have no idea there’s a war going on,” Morgan said, “and it would be nice for them to meet doctors who were deployed or in a war zone.”

University spokesman Tom Conroy and Chief Communications Officer Elizabeth Stauderman said they do not have information about the possible USSOCOM Center, and the University has not made any announcements about the Center. Morgan said the Center’s program will include instructors from outside the University’s staff, including well-known pickpocket Apollo Robbins. Robbins, who gained fame after pickpocketing former President Jimmy Carter’s Secret Service agents, would serve as an adjunct instructor if the plans for the Center are approved, he added.

The USSOCOM is the part of the Department of Defense, which oversees the Special Operations Commands for the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marine Corps, which perform atypical military operations and missions.
 

Marauder06

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Apparently some people are trying to organize a huge outcry against this partnership.
 

Marauder06

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Yes! "Yale Teaches Torture to Green Berets" will make for a wonderful headline.

Pretty much, yeah.

http://yaledailynews.com/blog/2013/02/15/batraville-and-lew-dod-plans-are-shortsighted-unethical/

"Let's bring up a bunch of stuff we're pissed off about, that has nothing to do with the military, and try to tie it to this new thing, because that will get us attention whereas the stuff we're really pissed off about (Yale's partnership with Singapore, race relations, and... Haiti? :-/) won't!"
 

goon175

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That article was ridiculous. I can't believe such educated people are capable of spewing such stupidity. Just for the record, I don't think the article is stupid because I disagree with their stance, but rather it is stupid because of their justifications for why this joint effort is a bad idea. Good job to the authors, they are among the dumbest smart people I have read.
 

0699

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With the budget cuts getting ready to slash left & right, is a new "Center of Excellence" :rolleyes: really the way to spend our money?
 

Marauder06

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One young undergrad was brave enough to risk being ostracized by his classmates and called them on their hypocracy in an op-ed:

http://yaledailynews.com/blog/2013/02/27/epshtein-a-missed-military-opportunity/

An excerpt:


It’s clear now that a Department of Defense-funded center at Yale was never a serious possibility. But the real story here is no longer whether or not this center was ever going to be established, but the vociferous and knee-jerk reaction from some members of the Yale and New Haven communities. A particular form of fear mongering replaced genuine dialogue — it became clear that the divide between those who fight this nation’s wars, and those in whose names the wars are fought, has gotten dangerously wide.

It is not necessarily a problem that under 1 percent of American citizens serve in the army. But it is a problem that most Americans, particularly Ivy League students, lack even a basic understanding of military functions and the moral codes on which they operate. And this ignorance, as demonstrated by this most recent back-and-forth on the potential Yale-DoD partnership, engendered fear.

This fear led critics of the proposed center to oppose the training of these U.S. service members at Yale. It’s true that these soldiers might have to execute certain foreign policies that Yale students might find immoral. Yet it is equally true that many of these Yale students will take their diplomas and go off to create those self-same immoral foreign policies. Wouldn’t they be benefited by a better understanding of the people who are actually going to be putting themselves in harm’s way to fulfill the directives that many Yale graduates will spend their careers writing?
 

Marauder06

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Yep. And that's probably not even the tip of what he's getting through Facebook, his Yale email account, or face-to-face.

It takes guts to go against the grain on an issue like this.
 

RackMaster

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My favorite part of the piece.

In order to truly fulfill Yale’s mission — “to seek exceptionally promising students … to develop their intellectual, moral, civic, and creative capacities to the fullest” — community members have argued that it is necessary to limit the military presence on campus. Their argument then, appears to be that in order to protect Yale’s free-thinking environment, we must bar certain types of people and certain practices. The hypocrisy here is self-evident.
 
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