Andrew Walter Marshall (born 1921)

Born: 13 Aug 1921 / Birth Place: Detroit [HN01B7][GDrive]

Parents: John Marshall; Katherine Marshall Marshall

Spouse: Mary Katherine Speer (Marriage Date: 1953 )


Saved Wikipedia - Nov 5, 2020


1st Director of Office of Net Assessment

In office 1973 – January 2, 2015

Preceded by Office Established

Succeeded by James H. Baker

Personal details


September 13, 1921

Detroit, Michigan, U.S.


March 26, 2019 (aged 97)

Alexandria, Virginia, U.S.


United States


University of Chicago

University of Detroit

Wayne State University

University of Chicago (M.A., 1949)

George Washington University

Andrew W. Marshall (September 13, 1921 – March 26, 2019)[1] was an American foreign policy strategist who served as director of the United States Department of Defense's Office of Net Assessment from 1973 to 2015. Appointed to the position by President Richard Nixon, Marshall remained in office during all successive administrations that followed until his retirement on January 2, 2015.[2][3][4] He was succeeded in the role by James H. Baker.[5]


Raised in Detroit, Michigan, Marshall pursued autodidactic interests in history, literature and the natural and social sciences from a young age. He graduated from Cass Technical High School (where he trained in machining and received the second-highest score on a citywide aptitude test for honors students similar in provenance to the SAT) in 1939. After briefly working in a factory and attending the University of Detroit for a year, he dropped out to take a position at the Murray Body Company, where he manufactured machine tools used in fabricating British airplane parts. Unable to serve in World War II due to a heart murmur, Marshall continued to work at Murray for the remainder of the war. He eventually resumed his formal studies at Wayne State University in 1943.

Marshall was admitted to the University of Chicago with graduate standing in 1945; under the chancellery of Robert Maynard Hutchins, students who were not enrolled in the generalist "Chicago Plan" undergraduate program pursued a course of study that led to a master's degree instead of the baccalaureate. Strongly influenced by Friedrich Hayek, he earned an M.A. in economics from the institution in 1949. His master's thesis was a sensitivity analysis of Lawrence Klein's econometric model of the US economy; influential for its methodology, it has never been published except for a short abstract.[6][7][8]

After electing to defer his studies in favor of eventually pursuing a Ph.D. in statistics (a program not yet offered by the University of Chicago), Marshall joined the RAND Corporation, the original "think tank," at the behest of mentor W. Allen Wallis in 1949. While he would briefly return to academia to cover Wallis's courses during the 1953-1954 term and continued to take statistics courses at George Washington University, Marshall soon gained the cachet of being part of "a cadre of strategic thinkers" that coalesced at the RAND Corporation in the 1950s and 1960s, a group that also included Charles J. Hitch, [Herman Khan (born 1922)], [James Rodney Schlesinger (born 1929)] and Daniel Ellsberg. Notably, he worked with Kahn on developing and advancing Monte Carlo methods.

Schlesinger would later become the U.S. Secretary of Defense and personally oversaw the creation of the Office of Net Assessment. The original main task of the office was to provide strategic evaluations on nuclear war issues. James Roche, Secretary of the Air Force in the administration of George W. Bush, worked for Marshall during the 1970s.[9]

Andrew Marshall was consulted for the 1992 draft of Defense Planning Guidance (DPG), created by then-Defense Department staffers I. Lewis Libby, Paul Wolfowitz, and Zalmay Khalilzad; all of whom took to influential roles in the administration of George W. Bush.[10]

We studied RMA exhaustively. Our great hero was Andy Marshall in the Pentagon. We translated every word he wrote.

—General Chen Zhou, PLA[11]

Marshall has been noted for fostering talent in younger associates, who then proceed to influential positions in and out of the federal government: "a slew of Marshall's former staffers have gone on to industry, academia and military think tanks."[12] Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, and Wolfowitz, among others, have been cited as Marshall "star protégés."[13]

In 2003, Marshall commissioned a report for the Pentagon predicting that abrupt climate change could bring the planet to the edge of anarchy as countries develop a nuclear threat to defend and secure dwindling food, water and energy supplies.[14] The report, authored by Peter Schwartz and Doug Randall, predicted that 'catastrophic' shortages of water and energy supply would become increasingly harder to overcome, plunging the planet into war by 2020. Schwarz and Randall further claimed that major European cities would be sunk beneath rising seas as Britain is plunged into a 'Siberian' climate by 2020.[15] At the time of the report's publishing, it became notable for its link to Marshall and its accusations that leadership of the Pentagon purportedly "covered up" the report for four months until it was obtained by the British weekly The Observer.[16]

In an interview in 2012, Major General Chen Zhou, the main author of four Chinese defence white papers, stated that Marshall was one of the most important figures in changing Chinese defence thinking in the 1990s and 2000s.[17]

Andrew Marshall funded and published three best selling books by Michael Pillsbury: Chinese Views of Future Warfare in 1998,[18] China Debates the Future Security Environment,[19] and in 2015 an international bestseller, The Hundred-Year Marathon: China's Secret Strategy to Replace America.[20] According to a biography, The Last Warrior: Andrew Marshall and the Shaping of Modern American Defense Strategy, "There was every reason for Marshall to expect that Chinese modes of thought would be even more alien to American ways of thinking than the Soviet leadership's had been, and that some insight into the thinking of China's political and military leaders could be gleaned from surveying open source writings. Pillsbury's work on China, which Marshall had encouraged and supported since the early 1970s, illustrates both points."[21] According to The New York Times March 26, 2019 obituary of Marshall, "His gift was the framing of the question, the discovery of the critical question," said Michael Pillsbury, a China expert who advised and worked with Mr. Marshall throughout his career."[22] The Washington Post obituary about Marshall stated, "He had an uncanny ability to pick out only the most significant questions, then to drill down deeply," Pillsbury, a colleague of 45 years, said in an interview. "He developed an iconoclastic, contrarian image."[23]

Foreign Policy named Marshall one of its 2012 Top 100 Global Thinkers, "for thinking way, way outside the Pentagon box".[24]


Marshall died on March 26, 2019 in Arlington, Virginia, at the age of 97.[25][26] House Armed Services Committee ranking member Rep. Mac Thornberry (R-TX) announced his death during a hearing, saying, "I can think of fewer people who have had a bigger impact of focusing our defense efforts, our national security, in the right direction than Mr. Marshall. He has been before our committee I don’t know how many times over the years. So I wanted to note that passing, but also to honor his memory because he made such a difference."[27]

2019 - Obituary (March 28), from LNP Always Lancaster

Name: Andrew Walter Marshall ; Death Age: 97 ; [...]

Marriage Date: 1953

Death Date: Abt 2019 / Death Place: Alexandria, Virginia

Obituary Date: 28 Mar 2019 [...]

Source : See newspaper article in the LNP Always Lancaster at [HN01B7][GDrive]

Washington Post - Andrew Marshall, Pentagon’s gnomic ‘Yoda’ of long-range planning, dies at 97


By Matt Schudel

March 27, 2019 at 7:31 p.m. EDT

Andrew W. Marshall in 1994. (Defense Department)[HN01B5][GDrive]
Mr. Marshall in 1969. (Rand Corp.)[HN01B6][GDrive]

For more than 40 years, Andrew W. Marshall presided over a little-known office deep in the bowels of the Pentagon as the Defense Department’s designated deep thinker. A civilian scholar who had never served a day in uniform, he was charged with pondering the imponderable and with devising the country’s long-range strategies for fighting — and surviving — future wars.

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Drawing on a variety of disciplines, from statistics and business management to nuclear physics, he was credited with foreseeing the collapse of the Soviet Union and with prodding reluctant U.S. leaders to adapt to changing military and technological needs.

Mr. Marshall, who guided the Defense Department’s Office of Net Assessment for 42 years, had access to the nation’s most sensitive intelligence secrets and worked directly for the secretary of defense. He was known for challenging established ways of thinking and for acquiring a reputation as the Pentagon’s “Yoda,” after the wise, gnomic Jedi master of “Star Wars.”

“He had an uncanny ability to pick out only the most significant questions, then to drill down deeply,” Michael Pillsbury, a colleague of 45 years, said in an interview. “He developed an iconoclastic, contrarian image.”

Mr. Marshall inspired such loyalty and near-reverent devotion that his former staffers called themselves graduates of “St. Andrew’s Prep.” He was 97 when he died March 26 at a hospice facility in Arlington, Va.

The death was confirmed by Jeffrey McKitrick, a friend and former employee. He was present at Mr. Marshall’s bedside when he died but said he could not cite a specific medical cause.

One reason Mr. Marshall was held in such esteem was his sheer longevity: He had been studying U.S. military strategy since 1949, at the beginning of the Cold War, and retired at 93 in 2015. He worked for years at the Rand Corp., a California think tank associated with the military, and had witnessed nuclear explosions in the 1950s before coming to the White House in 1969 as an aide to then-National Security Adviser Henry Kissinger.

In 1973, Secretary of Defense James R. Schlesinger, Mr. Marshall’s onetime colleague at Rand, created the Office of Net Assessment and put Mr. Marshall in charge. (The term “net assessment” derived from studies of nuclear war, including estimates of casualties and damage.)

“We tend to look at not very happy futures,” Mr. Marshall once told The Washington Post.

He brought an innovative approach to long-range military planning, including the use of business models of corporate competition to describe how powerful countries seek to gain geopolitical advantage over one another. He looked to history to see how advances in technology were reflected on the battlefield.

“What’s amazing,” he told the New Yorker in 2006, “is how much we know, it turns out, about the chariot revolution back in 1700 B.C.”

He distributed more than $10 million each year in grants to think tanks, universities and defense contractors to imagine future conflicts, then devised “war games” to test hypothetical military strategies.

Mr. Marshall had a staff of only about 10 analysts, including military officers and civilians, working in windowless offices on the third floor of the Pentagon. They held the highest levels of security clearance.

“His approach was always to focus on the question,” McKitrick, a defense researcher who worked for Mr. Marshall in the 1980s, said in an interview. “Too often, people focus on solutions but haven’t identified the right questions. He thought it was very important to get the strategic questions right and then start thinking about the answers.”

Mr. Marshall received intelligence reports from the CIA and Defense Department and gauged future military needs against what he learned about U.S. adversaries.

“One of the things that happens from time to time ,” he told Armed Forces Journal in 2011, “is that you have to revise your entire notion of how your opponent sees things.”

During the Cold War, the conventional Pentagon thinking was that a Soviet nuclear attack would be aimed at major cities.

“We assumed the Soviets were like us and that they would like to destroy our cities,” Pillsbury said. “No, they wanted to destroy our command-and-control systems,” targeting military and political leaders.

As a result, billions of dollars were spent to strengthen emergency bunkers and to improve communications networks.

In the waning years of the Cold War, Mr. Marshall was among the first to suggest the Soviet Union’s crumbling infrastructure and failing economy foretold the country’s imminent collapse.

By then, Mr. Marshall had turned his attention in a different direction, following the adage that military leaders are always prepared to the fight the last war, not the next one. His view was that, as the world changed, the nature of warfare should change with it. In the 1990s, he recommended that military leaders shift their focus to China as the greatest long-term threat to U.S. preeminence.

In a 1993 memo called “Some Thoughts on Military Revolutions,” Mr. Marshall called for a “revolution in military affairs,” emphasizing a smaller, more mobile strike force and greater reliance on information technology. (Mr. Marshall did not use computers or email himself.)

During the administration of President George W. Bush, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld called on Mr. Marshall to lead a comprehensive review of military readiness. Rumsfeld’s recommendation of a smaller, nimbler military came directly out of Mr. Marshall’s thinking.

Critics, however, noted that Mr. Marshall underestimated the social impact of the Internet and failed to anticipate the role of terrorism in the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

“You can never account for black swans, and 9/11 was a black swan,” McKitrick said. “There is a difference between predictions and forecasting.” Mr. Marshall, he added, “was about strategic forecasting.”

Andrew Walter Marshall was born Aug. 13, 1921, in Detroit. His father was a stonemason, his mother a homemaker; both parents were immigrants from England.

As a child, Mr. Marshall was an eager reader with an interest in the military and history. He received a medical deferment during World War II because of a heart murmur and worked at an aircraft factory.

He attended Wayne State University in Detroit and, despite not having a bachelor’s degree, was admitted to graduate school in economics at the University of Chicago, where he received a master’s degree.

At the Rand Corp., his colleagues included futurist Herman Kahn — the best man at his wedding — and Daniel Ellsberg, who released the Pentagon Papers to news organizations, revealing the early history of the Vietnam War.

In those years, Mr. Marshall worked on early-warning systems and other ways to reduce the likelihood of nuclear attack.

His first wife, the former Mary Speer, died in 2004 after more than 50 years of marriage. His second wife, Ann Wheeler Smith, died in 2017. He had no immediate survivors.

Mr. Marshall was a political appointee who often expected that a change in administration would send him packing. (He never sold his house in California, expecting that eventuality.) In 1997, Defense Secretary William Cohen attempted to have him transferred out of the Pentagon, but the outcry was so strong that Mr. Marshall stayed put for another 18 years.

After he retired, Mr. Marshall continued to consult with military experts until a week before his death.

Mr. Marshall’s office prepared more than 20 “net assessments” of future military strategies, each looking 10 to 20 years into the future. He delivered the reports by hand to the secretary of defense, carrying them in a zippered bag made of fireproof fabric. Only one copy was made of each report, which Mr. Marshall then kept locked in his office.

He is the only person known to have read all the reports, which remain classified to this day

Office of Net Assessment

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Office of Net Assessment

The United States Department of Defense's Office of Net Assessment[1] (ONA) was created in 1973 by Richard Nixon to serve as the Pentagon's "internal think tank" that "looks 20 to 30 years into the military's future, often with the assistance of outside contractors, and produces reports on the results of its research".[2] The Director of Net Assessment is the principal staff assistant and advisor to the Secretary and Deputy Secretary of Defense on net assessment.[clarification needed]

According to Defense Directive 5111.11, the Director shall develop and coordinate net assessments of the standing, trends, and future prospects of U.S. military capabilities and military potential in comparison with those of other countries or groups of countries in order to identify emerging or future threats or opportunities for the United States.[3][4] Paul Bracken explains that it is important to have a good grasp of net assessment because it is an "important part of the language spoken by leaders in the higher levels of DOD" and officers who lack familiarity "will be at a disadvantage in communicating with the civilian leadership".[5]

Andrew Marshall was named its first director, a position he continued to hold under succeeding administrations.[6] In October 2014, Marshall announced plans to retire in January 2015.[7] He was replaced by Jim Baker in May 2015.[8][9]

Office of Net Assessment Directors[edit]

Notable staff[edit]

Staff members have included:


Presentation of the George P. Shultz Award for Distinguished Service

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Presentation of the George P. Shultz Award for Distinguished Service to Andrew Marshall, four-decade director of the Pentagon’s “internal think tank,” the Office of Net Assessment. The event is introduced by Andrew D. May, Office of Net Assessment and the discussion is moderated by Samantha Ravich, FDD CSIF board member and former Deputy National Security Advisor to the Vice President.

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OPUS 140 Andrew Marshall RIP NOT!

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Steve Pieczenik

This guy was a nefarious traitor. Hear me on the death of Andy Marshall: responsible for rise of NEOCONS and 911 false flag.

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