Your Naval Academy and the Russia-Ukraine Conflict

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Dear Alumni, Parents, and Friends,

The ongoing conflict in Ukraine is a stark reminder of the challenges that await our midshipmen once they graduate and commission into our Navy and Marine Corps. Recent events have reinforced the important need for leaders to be resilient, intelligent, cultured and innovative.

At your United States Naval Academy, every aspect of the curriculum and training is designed to help each member of the Brigade build a foundation from which they will expand upon throughout their military service and beyond. As part of the process, they work with top-tier faculty, staff, and shipmates from the Fleet that together tackle real-world problems. Whether in the classroom or out in the field, curricular programs and resources like the Center for Experiential Leadership Development, the Stockdale Center for Ethical LeadershipInternational ProgramsForeign Area Studies, and Character Capstone Seminars all prepare midshipmen to excel in leadership positions through practice and reflection and ensure they are morally, mentally and physically prepared for service. 

The following selections of articles, interviews, and podcasts from Naval Academy faculty, staff, and midshipmen all contribute to a broader discussion regarding the Russia-Ukraine conflict, geopolitics, and national security:

Faculty, Staff and Guest Lecturers Engage in Conversations for Midshipmen about the Conflict in Ukraine, and Why it Should Matter to Americans:

Why Russian Soldiers Should Lay Down Their Arms by Jovana Davidovic, a Resident Fellow in the Stockdale Center for Ethical Leadership

The Center for Regional Studies hosted author Timothy Frye at the Naval Academy on 3 March to discuss his recent book, Weak Strongman: The Limits of Power in Putin’s Russia with midshipmen.

The USNA Interdisciplinary Forum assembled with Naval Academy Faculty, Staff, and midshipmen for a discussion of the cultural, linguistic, historical, and political roots the Russian invasion of Ukraine and its ramifications for American and European security in a talk titled, Ukraine: Past, Present, Future.

Midshipmen Remain Focused on Cultural Awareness and the Importance of International Partnerships as it Relates to National Security:

MIDN 1/C Pickard and MIDN 1/C Bell Study Abroad in France

Today’s global challenges underscore the importance of strong partnerships, which remains the core focus of the Naval Academy’s International Programs Office. France is America’s oldest friend and Ally, and we look to France as a partner in global security around the world.

The United States and France agree on the need to hold Russia accountable for its aggressive and destabilizing activities, including in Ukraine, and France is a partner in standing up to Russia’s attempts to undermine democratic systems. Midshipmen are ambassadors and instruments of soft power, and these opportunities to develop partnerships with allied nations do not happen without private support.

Noted Alumni Continue to Lead from the Front in Service and Scholarship, Now with Thoughts on the Russia-Ukraine Conflict:

Truth Is The Best Way to Defeat Putin’s Invasion of Ukraine by RADM Ben Wachendorf ’74

Recent Interview with ADM Jim Stavridis ’76 Regarding NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization) Actions to Thwart Russian Advance.

The Stockdale Center for Ethical Leadership Shares Ethical Leadership Education and Innovation as it Relates to Armed Conflict:

How should the laws of armed conflict address the rise of AI-augmented decision-making? by Jovana Davidovic, a Resident Fellow in the Stockdale Center for Ethical Leadership

Geoff Voigt ’82, a former Surface Warfare Officer, discusses the use of UAV’s in the Russo/Ukrainian War with RadioStockdale.

Political or Partisan on RadioStockdale discusses the current landscape worldwide on the state of political/military affairs.

This is a brief summary of the many ways your Naval Academy is engaged in the fight of today and preparing for the conflicts of tomorrow. Many of these lines of effort would be impossible without private support from you and many other Naval Academy graduates, parents, and faithful friends. As we continue in our Year of Gratitude, we thank you once again for your role in sustaining and further elevating the Naval Academy as the Nation’s flagship undergraduate education, leadership, and character development institution.

Finally, we are pleased to offer the following opportunities to engage with the Naval Academy community in April, please consider joining us: 


• Called to Serve Speaker Series with Admiral Harry B. Harris Jr. ’78, USN (Ret,), former Ambassador to South Korea 

In Person:  

• Naval Academy Foreign Affairs Conference (NAFAC), Partnership in the 21st Century: Aligning Values and Interests in a Multipolar World 

• Naval Academy Minority Association (NAMA) Leadership Forum on Diversity and Inclusion 


Brittanny Lee
Assistant Director, Regional Development
Office: 410-295-4182 | Mobile: 207-522-6188

Mike Hoffman
Executive Director, Regional Development
Office: 410-295-4184 | Mobile: 443-798-5644