An oral history interview with Captain Peter M. Swartz, USN (Ret.), was conducted on 24 July 2019 by Naval History and Heritage Command historians Ryan Peeks and Justin Blanton. The wide-ranging, candid conversation covered Captain Swartz’s antecedents, his two combat tours in Vietnam as a junior officer; his assignments to key policy directorates of the OPNAV staff; his final tour as an executive assistant to Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Colin L. Powell; and his post-retirement career with Center for Naval Analyses (CNA). Of particular interest and significance are Captain Swartz’s account of the genesis and application of the Navy’s Maritime Strategy under Secretary of the Navy John F. Lehman during the 1980s, his grandstand view of the Navy’s conversion to a joint-warfighting branch of service after Desert Shield/Desert Storm, and his thoughts about the perceived lack of an overarching service-specific strategy in the post–Cold War and post–9-11 environments.
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