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Sep 18th, 2014




U.S. Military Deaths in Afghanistan

As of Sunday, August 31, 2014, at least 2,343 members of the U.S. military had died in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Uzbekistan as a result of the invasion of Afghanistan in late 2001, according to iCasualties.org.

Since the start of U.S. military operations in Afghanistan, 17,674 U.S. service members have been wounded as of Sept. 30, 2012, according to iCasualties.org.

Latest identifications:


Army Green Beret Staff Sgt. Girard D. Gass Jr., Lumber Bridge, North Carolina, died Aug. 3, 2014 in Jalalabad Air Field Hospital, Afghanistan, from a noncombat-related incident sustained while on patrol in Nangarhar Province, Afghanistan. He was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 3rd Special Forces Group, Fort Bragg, North Carolina.


Army Maj. Gen. Harold J. Greene, 55, Schenectady, N.Y., died Aug. 5, 2014 in Kabul, Afghanistan, of wounds caused by small-arms fire in an insider attack in Kabul, Afghanistan. He was assigned as deputy commanding general of Combined Security Transition Command-Afghanistan.


Army Sgt. 1st Class Samuel C. Hairston, 35, Houston, Texas, died Aug. 12, 2014 in Ghazni, Afghanistan, of injuries sustained when his unit was engaged by enemy small-arms fire. He was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, N.C.


Army Sgt. 1st Class Matthew I. Leggett, 39, Ruskin, Florida, died Aug. 20, 2014 in Kabul, Afghanistan, of injuries received when he was engaged by the enemy. He was assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion, XVIII Airborne Corps, Fort Bragg, North Carolina.


Army Sgt. Christopher W. Mulalley, 26, Eureka, Calif., died Aug. 22, 2014 in Gardez, Afghanistan, as the result of a noncombat-related incident. He was assigned to 1st Battalion, 3rd Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division, Fort Hood, Texas.

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SEPTEMBER UPDATES


Army Spc. Brian K. Arsenault, 28, Northborough, Massachusetts, died Sept. 4, 2014 in Ghazni, Afghanistan, of injuries sustained when his unit was engaged by enemy small-arms fire. He was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, North Carolina.


Marine Corps Sgt. Charles C. Strong, 28, Suffolk, Virginia, died Sept. 15, 2014 in Herat province, Afghanistan while conducting combat operations. He was assigned to 2nd Marine Special Operations Battalion, Marine Corps Forces Special Operations Command, Camp Lejeune, North Carolina.


Civilian Stephen Byus, 39, Reynoldsburg, Ohio, died Sept. 16, 2014 in Kabul, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered from an enemy attack. He was a member of the Defense Logistics Agency Land and Maritime in Columbus, Ohio, working as a supply specialist, and assigned to the Combined Security Transition Command Afghanistan while deployed.


Army Maj. Michael J. Donahue, 41, Columbus, Ohio, died Sept. 16, 2014 in Kabul, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered from an enemy attack. He was assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion, XVIII Airborne Corps, Fort Bragg, North Carolina.

Remember Their Sacrifice

Remember Their Sacrifice

Related links

Iraq Casualties

Afghanistan Casualties

Honor the Fallen

Click to visit the Military Times Hall of Valor

Visit Military Times — The top source for military news

Faces of the Dead
An interactive look at each U.S. service member who died in Afghanistan or Iraq



Wetterling Case on CNN’s ‘Hunt With John Walsh’

Jacob Wetterling at age 11, left, and what authorities think he would look like today, using age progression software. (The National Center for Missing &
Jacob Wetterling at age 11, left, and what authorities think he would look like today, using age progression software. (The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children)

Amy Carlson Gustafson

August 28, 2014

On Sunday [Aug. 31, 2014], CNN’s “The Hunt with John Walsh” will feature a 25-year-old Minnesota cold case. The first half of the show focuses on Jacob Wetterling, the 11-year-old boy who was kidnapped while riding his bike in his hometown of St. Joseph on Oct. 22, 1989.

On cnn.com, Jacob’s mother, Patty Wetterling, has posted five questions for her son’s abductor, who is still unknown, including “Who are you?” and “Is Jacob still alive?”

“The Hunt With John Walsh” features unsolved and ongoing crime investigations. Walsh was the host of the long-running “America’s Most Wanted” before it was canceled in 2011 after airing for more than two decades on Fox.

The episode of “The Hunt With John Walsh” featuring the Wetterling case airs at 8 p.m. [CT] Sunday [Aug. 31, 2014].

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Read about the Wetterling case and watch “The Hunt” trailer at CNN.com

Got a tip? Call 1-866-THE-HUNT or click here

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Related reports on this site

Jacob Wetterling Kidnapping Anniversary Marked By AMBER Alert Donation (Oct. 22, 2011)

Active AMBER Alerts
Click to see Active AMBER Alerts

Minnesota Missing Persons Linkage Analysis (June 22, 2011)


Jacob Wetterling Kidnapping Tips (March 2, 2011)

Jacob’s Kidnapping ‘Comes of Age’ (Oct. 22, 2010)

Jerry Wetterling wears a button showing a digitally aged photo of Jacob as he might have looked at age 21.
Jerry Wetterling wears a button showing a digitally aged photo of Jacob as he might have looked at age 21. (Photo: Kimm Anderson / St. Cloud Times)

Jacob Wetterling — Latest News (Oct. 5, 2010)

Google Earth Map
Satellite image of the Wetterling abduction site and surrounding area shows how few residences there are in the vicinity. The development northwest of the abduction site did not exist and consisted of woodland at the time of Jacob’s kidnapping in 1989 (Google Earth / Joy Baker; click on image for larger display; view map of abduction site)

Wetterling Suspect Dan Rassier (July 3, 2010)


Dan Rassier

Jacob Wetterling: Rassier Search (July 1, 2010)


Investigators use a tractor-mounted backhoe for an excavation on the Rassier farm in St. Joseph, Minn., Thursday, July 1, 2010. (Photo credit: Kimm Anderson / St. Cloud Times)

Jacob Wetterling Freedom Walk (Dec. 21, 2009)


On Sunday, Dec. 19, 2009, the third and final day of Jacob’s Freedom Walk for Missing and Abducted Children, Vietnam vets, led by Mike Clark and Jerry Wetterling, are met by Jacob’s mother Patty Wetterling upon arriving at the site where 11-year-old Jacob was abducted on Sunday, October 22, 1989, about half a mile from the Wetterling home in rural St. Joseph, Minn. After a prayer, three rifle rounds are fired as the universal symbol of letting the lost or missing know they’re being searched for.

Missing Person Joshua Guimond (Nov. 7, 2009)

Jacob Wetterling 20 Years On (Oct. 22, 2009)


A photo of Jacob Wetterling from 1989, the year he was taken (left), and an age-adjusted image of what he may have looked like at age 29 (right).

Jacob Wetterling Celebration (Oct. 16, 2009)


Patty Wetterling sings with Red Grammer during the “Celebration of Children” concert at the College of St. Benedict, St. Joseph, Oct. 17, 2009. (Photo credit: Adam Hammer / St. Cloud Times)

Wetterling Friend Shares Story (Apr. 28, 2009)

U.S. Army Reserve Staff Sgt. Aaron Larson poses with his fiancée Jackie Tentinger and 2-year-old son, Anikan, as he arrives home April 17, 2009 in Slayton, Minn. (Photo credit: Associated Press / St. Cloud Times)
U.S. Army Reserve Staff Sgt. Aaron Larson poses with his fiancée Jackie Tentinger and 2-year-old son, Anikan, as he arrives home April 17, 2009 in Slayton, Minn., after a year-long deployment in Iraq. As an 11-year-old boy in St. Joseph, Aaron was with his best friend Jacob Wetterling when Jacob was kidnapped by a masked gunman on Sunday, Oct. 22, 1989. (Photo credit: Justine Wettschreck — Daily Globe /Associated Press)

Jacob Wetterling Lead Unravels (Jan. 7, 2009)


Vern’s Barber Shop in St. Francis, Wis.
(Photo: John Klein / Journal Sentinal)



U.S. Military Deaths in Afghanistan

As of Thursday, July 31, 2014, at least 2,338 members of the U.S. military had died in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Uzbekistan as a result of the invasion of Afghanistan in late 2001, according to iCasualties.org.

Since the start of U.S. military operations in Afghanistan, 17,674 U.S. service members have been wounded as of Sept. 30, 2012, according to iCasualties.org.

Latest identifications:


Army Pfc. Donnell A. Hamilton, Jr., 20, Kenosha, Wisconsin, died July 24, 2014 at Brooke Army Medical Center, Joint Base San Antonio, Texas, from an illness contracted in Ghazni Province, Afghanistan. He was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 5th Cavalry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, Fort Hood, Texas.


Army Staff Sgt. Benjamin G. Prange, 30, Hickman, Neb., died July 24, 2014 in Mirugol Kalay, Kandahar Province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when the enemy attacked his vehicle with an improvised explosive device. He was assigned to 1st Battalion, 12th Infantry Regiment, 4th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, Fort Carson, Colo.


Army Pfc. Keith M. Williams, 19, Visalia, Calif., died July 24, 2014 in Mirugol Kalay, Kandahar Province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when the enemy attacked his vehicle with an improvised explosive device. He was assigned to 1st Battalion, 12th Infantry Regiment, 4th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, Fort Carson, Colo.

Remember Their Sacrifice

Remember Their Sacrifice

Related links

Iraq Casualties

Afghanistan Casualties

Honor the Fallen

Click to visit the Military Times Hall of Valor

Visit Military Times — The top source for military news

Faces of the Dead
An interactive look at each U.S. service member who died in Afghanistan or Iraq



U.S. Military Deaths in Afghanistan

As of Monday, June 30, 2014, at least 2,335 members of the U.S. military had died in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Uzbekistan as a result of the invasion of Afghanistan in late 2001, according to iCasualties.org.

Since the start of U.S. military operations in Afghanistan, 17,674 U.S. service members have been wounded as of Sept. 30, 2012, according to iCasualties.org.

Latest identifications:


Army Green Beret Capt. Jason B. Jones, 29, Orwigsburg, Pennsylvania, died June 2, 2014 in Jalalabad, Afghanistan, of wounds received from small-arms fire. He was assigned 1st Battalion, 3rd Special Forces Group (Airborne), Fort Bragg, North Carolina.


Army Pfc. Matthew H. Walker, 20, Hillsboro, Missouri, died June 5, 2014 in Paktika province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when his unit was attacked by enemy fire. He was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 502nd Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division, Fort Campbell, Kentucky.


Army Cpl. Justin R. Clouse, 22, Sprague, Washington, died June 9, 2014 in Gaza Village, Afghanistan, of wounds caused by aircraft friendly fire from an Air Force B-1 bomber while engaged in a combat operation. He was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 12th Infantry Regiment, 4th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, Fort Carson, Colorado.


Army Spc. Justin R. Helton, 25, Beaver, Ohio, died June 9, 2014 in Gaza Village, Afghanistan, of wounds caused by aircraft friendly fire from an Air Force B-1 bomber while engaged in a combat operation. He was assigned to the 18th Ordnance Company, 192nd Ordnance Battalion, 52nd Ordnance Group, Fort Bragg, North Carolina.


Army Spc. Terry J. Hurne, 34, Merced, California, died June 9, 2014 in Logar province, Afghanistan, in a noncombat-related incident. He was assigned to the 710th Brigade Support Battalion, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division, Fort Drum, New York.


Army Green Beret Staff Sgt. Jason A. McDonald, 28, Butler, Georgia, died June 9, 2014 in Gaza Village, Afghanistan, of wounds caused by aircraft friendly fire from an Air Force B-1 bomber while engaged in a combat operation. He was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 5th Special Forces Group, Fort Campbell, Kentucky.


Army Green Beret Staff Sgt. Scott R. Studenmund, 24, Pasadena, California, died June 9, 2014 in Gaza Village, Afghanistan, of wounds caused by aircraft friendly fire from an Air Force B-1 bomber while engaged in a combat operation. He was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 5th Special Forces Group, Fort Campbell, Kentucky.


Army Pvt. Aaron S. Toppen, 19, Mokena, Illinois, died June 9, 2014 in Gaza Village, Afghanistan, of wounds caused by aircraft friendly fire from an Air Force B-1 bomber while engaged in a combat operation. He was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 12th Infantry Regiment, 4th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, Fort Carson, Colorado.


Navy Boatswain’s Mate Seaman Yeshabel Villot-Carrasco, 23, Parma, Ohio, died as a result of a non-hostile incident June 19, 2014 aboard the destroyer USS James E. Williams (DDG-95) while the ship was underway in the Red Sea.


Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Brandon J. Garabrant, 19, Peterborough, New Hampshire, died June 20, 2014 while conducting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan. He was assigned to 2nd Combat Engineer Battalion, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Lejeune, North Carolina.


Marine Corps Staff Sgt. David H. Stewart, 34, Stafford, Virginia, died June 20, 2014 while conducting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan. He was assigned to 2nd Combat Engineer Battalion, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Lejeune, North Carolina.


Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Adam F. Wolff, 25, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, died June 20, 2014 while conducting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan. He was assigned to 2nd Combat Engineer Battalion, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Lejeune, North Carolina.


Marine Corps Sgt. Thomas Z. Spitzer, 23, New Braunfels, Texas, died June 25, 2014 while conducting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan. He was assigned to 1st Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Twentynine Palms, California.

Remember Their Sacrifice

Remember Their Sacrifice

Related links

Iraq Casualties

Afghanistan Casualties

Honor the Fallen

Click to visit the Military Times Hall of Valor

Visit Military Times — The top source for military news

Faces of the Dead
An interactive look at each U.S. service member who died in Afghanistan or Iraq



Vanished Minnesotans: 147 Missing Persons


June 6, 2014

This week’s renewed search for a Maple Grove girl [Amy Sue Pagnac] who disappeared 25 years ago and the discovery of the bones of a missing man in Lakeville last month made me wonder how many Minnesotans are currently considered missing persons. Minnesota’s state clearinghouse only displays about 70 faces. I found a more comprehensive list at the National Missing and Unidentified Persons System (NamUs), a web site that collects information from medical examiners and law enforcement around the country. It has two main categories of data: missing persons, and unidentified remains. There’s a smaller third group, called “unclaimed persons,” in which people are identified, but no one has come forward to take possession of the remains.

The Minnesota missing persons list includes 147 names, dating back to June 14, 1963, the day Martin Franzel, then 77, took his usual early morning walk in Minneapolis and vanished without a trace. The most recent addition is Cody Christie, 20, who was last seen leaving a relative’s home in Hinckley on foot on May 12 of this year. The youngest were 2-year-old Aaron Anderson, last seen playing in his yard in Pine City on April 7, 1989, and 2-year-old Kyle Jansen, whose footprints were found leading down to the bank of the Maple River in Mankato on Dec. 22, 1991.

I look at each one of these faces and imagine the circles of grief in the families and friends left behind. Remarkably, this kind of national clearinghouse has only been around for nine years or so, but it’s already contributing to a phenomenon of the modern age: advances in communication and forensic science mean it’s harder than ever to remain a missing person in America.

James Eli Shiffer, the Star Tribune’s watchdog and data editor, digs into data and documents to uncover the news. Reach him at 612-673-4116, james.shiffer@startribune.com or follow him on Twitter at @jameselishiffer.

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Related reports on this site

Minnesota Missing Person Linkage Analysis (June 22, 2011)


Missing Person Joshua Guimond (Nov. 7, 2009)



U.S. Military Deaths in Afghanistan

As of Saturday, May 31, 2014, at least 2,323 members of the U.S. military had died in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Uzbekistan as a result of the invasion of Afghanistan in late 2001, according to iCasualties.org.

Since the start of U.S. military operations in Afghanistan, 17,674 U.S. service members have been wounded as of Sept. 30, 2012, according to iCasualties.org.

Latest identifications:


Army Pfc. Daniela Rojas, 19, Los Angeles, California, died May 3, 2014 in Homburg, Germany, due to a noncombat-related illness. She was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 12th Infantry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, Fort Carson, Colorado.


Army Chief Warrant Officer 2 Deric M. Rasmussen, 33, Oceanside, California, died May 11, 2014 in Mazar E Sharif, Afghanistan, as the result in a non-combat incident. He was assigned to the Company C, 1st Battalion, 227th Aviation Regiment, 1st Air Cavalry Brigade, Fort Hood, Texas.


Army Command Sgt. Maj. Martin R. Barreras, 49, Tucson, Arizona, died May 13, 2014 in San Antonio Military Medical Center, Joint Base San Antonio, Texas, from wounds suffered on May 6, in Harat Province, Afghanistan, when enemy forces attacked his unit with small-arms fire. He was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 5th Infantry, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division, Fort Bliss, Texas.


Army Spc. Adrian M. Perkins, 19, Pine Valley, California, died May 17, 2014 in Amman, Jordan, from a noncombat- related injury. He was assigned to 1st Battalion, 67th Armor Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, Fort Carson, Colorado.


Army Pfc. Jacob H. Wykstra, 21, Thornton, Colorado, died May 28, 2014 in Kandahar Province, Afghanistan, of injuries sustained as the result of an aircraft accident. He was assigned 1st Battalion, 12th Infantry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, Fort Carson, Colorado.

Remember Their Sacrifice

Remember Their Sacrifice

Related links

Iraq Casualties

Afghanistan Casualties

Honor the Fallen

Click to visit the Military Times Hall of Valor

Visit Military Times — The top source for military news

Faces of the Dead
An interactive look at each U.S. service member who died in Afghanistan or Iraq



U.S. Military Deaths in Afghanistan

As of Wednesday, April 30, 2014, at least 2,319 members of the U.S. military had died in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Uzbekistan as a result of the invasion of Afghanistan in late 2001, according to iCasualties.org.

Since the start of U.S. military operations in Afghanistan, 17,674 U.S. service members have been wounded as of Sept. 30, 2012, according to iCasualties.org.

Latest identifications:


Army Capt. James E. Chaffin III, 27, West Columbia, S.C., died April 1, 2014 in Kandahar, Afghanistan, of a noncombat-related incident. He was assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 319th Field Artillery Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, N.C.


Army Spc. Kerry M. G. Danyluk, 27, Cuero, Texas, died April 15, 2014 at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center, Germany, of injuries sustained April 12 when enemy forces attacked his unit with small-arms fire in Pul-e-Alam, Logar province, Afghanistan. He was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 87th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division, Fort Drum, N.Y.


Army Pfc. Christian J. Chandler, 20, Trenton, Texas, died April 28, 2014 in Baraki Barak District, Logar province, Afghanistan, when enemy forces attacked his unit with small-arms fire. He was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 87th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division (Light), Fort Drum, New York.


Army Sgt. Shawn M. Farrell II, 24, Accord, New York, died April 28, 2014 in Nejrab District, Kapisa province, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained when enemy forces attacked his unit with small-arms fire. He was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 32nd Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division (Light), Fort Drum, New York.

Remember Their Sacrifice

Remember Their Sacrifice

Related links

Iraq Casualties

Afghanistan Casualties

Honor the Fallen

Click to visit the Military Times Hall of Valor

Visit Military Times — The top source for military news

Faces of the Dead
An interactive look at each U.S. service member who died in Afghanistan or Iraq



U.S. Military Deaths in Afghanistan

As of Monday, March 31, 2014, at least 2,315 members of the U.S. military had died in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Uzbekistan as a result of the invasion of Afghanistan in late 2001, according to iCasualties.org.

Since the start of U.S. military operations in Afghanistan, 17,674 U.S. service members have been wounded as of Sept. 30, 2012, according to iCasualties.org.

Identifications: None

No U.S. military deaths were reported in Afghanistan for the month of March, 2014.

No U.S. service member died in Afghanistan in March 2014.

Remember Their Sacrifice

Remember Their Sacrifice

Related links

Iraq Casualties

Afghanistan Casualties

Honor the Fallen

Click to visit the Military Times Hall of Valor

Visit Military Times — The top source for military news

Faces of the Dead
An interactive look at each U.S. service member who died in Afghanistan or Iraq



The Personality Profile  of Russian President Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin
(Влади́мир Влади́мирович Пу́тин)

Aubrey Immelman
Unit for the Study of Personality in Politics
March 2014

VladimirPutinNewYear2012-2.png

A remotely conducted empirical psychological assessment of Russian leader Vladimir Putin is currently in progress, using the third edition of the Millon Inventory of Diagnostic Criteria (MIDC), which yields 34 normal and maladaptive personality classifications congruent with DSM–V.

Informal observation suggests that Putin is a highly dominant leader. However, more systematic observation is required to establish whether he is an introvert or an extravert.

If Putin is a dominant introvert, which appears to be the case [confirmed 7/30/2014], the following personality-based leadership profile would apply:

In terms of Lloyd Etheredge’s (1978) fourfold typology of personality-based foreign policy role orientations, which locates policymakers on the dimensions of dominance–submission and introversion–extraversion, high-dominance introverts (in American politics, presidents such as Woodrow Wilson and Herbert Hoover) are quite willing to use military force, tending

to divide the world, in their thought, between the moral values they think it ought to exhibit and the forces opposed to this vision. They tend to have a strong, almost Manichean, moral component to their views. They tend to be described as stubborn and tenacious. They seek to reshape the world in accordance with their personal vision, and their foreign policies are often characterized by the tenaciousness with which they advance one central idea. … [These leaders] seem relatively preoccupied with themes of exclusion, the establishment of institutions or principles to keep potentially disruptive forces in check. (p. 449; italics in original)

Etheredge’s high-dominance introvert is similar in character to Margaret Hermann’s (1987) expansionist orientation to foreign affairs. These leaders have a view of the world as being “divided into ‘us’ and ‘them,’ ” based on a belief system in which conflict is viewed as inherent in the international system. This world view prompts a personal political style characterized by a “wariness of others’ motives” and a directive, controlling interpersonal orientation, resulting in a foreign policy “focused on issues of security and status,” favoring “low-commitment actions” and espousing “short-term, immediate change in the international arena.” Expansionist leaders “are not averse to using the ‘enemy’ as a scapegoat” and their rhetoric often may be “hostile in tone” (pp. 168–169).

If, on the other hand, Putin turns out to be a dominant extravert [which is not the case; 7/30/2014 update], the following thumbnail sketch would apply:

High-dominance extraverts (such as U.S. presidents Theodore and Franklin Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy, and Lyndon Johnson) share high-dominance introverts’ tendency “to use military force”

[b]ut in general … are more flexible and pragmatic, more varied in the wide range and scope of major foreign policy initiatives. … [In contrast to high-dominance introverts, they] want to lead rather than contain. They advocate change, seek to stir up things globally. … [and] are relatively more interested in inclusion [compared with high-dominance introverts, who favor exclusion], initiating programs and institutions for worldwide leadership and cooperative advance on a wide range of issues. (p. 449)

From the perspective of Hermann’s (1987) sixfold typology, the best fit for the high-dominance extravert is the active-independent orientation to foreign affairs. These leaders, though recognizing the importance of other countries, are self-reliant and prefer to participate in international affairs on their own terms and without engendering a dependent relationship with other countries (p. 168).

In terms of personal political style, they “[s]eek a variety of information before making a decision; examine carefully the possible consequences of alternatives under consideration for dealing with a problem; [and] cultivate relationships with a diverse group of nations” (Hermann, 1987, p. 169).

The foreign policy resulting from an active-independent orientation is generally “focused on economic and security issues.” These leaders’ behaviors are “usually positive in tone but involves little commitment” because they “shun commitments that limit maneuverability and … independence” (Hermann, 1987, p. 169).

In summary, preliminary findings [confirmed 7/30/2014] suggest that Putin is more of an expansionist than an active-independent leader.

References

Etheredge, L. S. (1978). Personality effects on American foreign policy, 1898–1968: A test of interpersonal generalization theory. American Political Science Review, 72, 434–451.

Hermann, M. G. (1987). Assessing the foreign policy role orientations of sub-Saharan African leaders. In S. G. Walker (Ed.), Role theory and foreign policy analysis (pp. 161–198). Durham, NC: Duke University Press.

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April 25, 2014 Update: Pilot Study Completed

Putin-poster
Click on image for larger view

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July 30, 2014 Update: Full Study Completed

Following additional data collection by summer research fellow Joe Trenzeluk during the months of June and July, the psychological assessment of Russian leader Vladimir Putin has been completed. The next phase of the study, to be conducted during the month of August, will be to elaborate on Putin’s leadership style, employing his personality profile as a temporally and cross-situationally stable framework for anticipating his future political behavior.

Putin-poster_revised
Click on image for larger view

Joe Trenzeluk presents his research on ?The personality profile of Russian president Vladimir Putin? at the Undergraduate Research Poster Session, Great Hall, St. John?s University, Collegeville, Minn., Aug. 6, 2014.
Joe Trenzeluk presents his research on “The personality profile of Russian president Vladimir Putin” at the Undergraduate Research Poster Session, Great Hall, St. John’s University, Collegeville, Minn., Aug. 6, 2014.

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Russia’s Military Capability

Comparing the Military Capability of Putin’s Russia With the Soviet Union’s

By Adam Taylor

March 27, 2014


Click for report full-scale graphics

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July 2, 2014 — Related report

Putin Should Prepare Himself for Clinton

If Clinton Is Elected President, Russia’s Putin Will Be In for Rude Awakening

View image on Twitter
A July 31, 2014 tweet from the account of Dmitry Rogozin, deputy prime minister of Russia, ridiculed Obama by juxtaposing an image of the Russian president with a cheetah and another of his American counterpart holding a puppy. (Image added; not part of St. Cloud Times article)

By Joe Trenzeluk
St. Cloud Times
June 28, 2014

The past few months have sparked heated debate regarding President Obama’s handling of foreign policy, specifically the crisis in Ukraine and his negotiations, or lack thereof, with Vladimir Putin.

Critics have accused Obama of appearing weak and passive, imposing feeble sanctions and essentially letting Putin’s expansionism go unchecked. From their perspective, Obama is not a president who adversaries fear, but a mere annoyance who the tough, Judo-champion, ex-KGB Russian president easily can swat aside.

This mismatch between the world’s two most powerful men (according to Forbes’ latest rankings) should come as no surprise. Studies of Obama’s personality conducted at the Unit for the Study of Personality in Politics show that, not unlike Putin and many other world leaders, Obama is an ambitious individual. However, the key difference between the personalities of Obama and Putin is an accommodating tendency on Obama’s part, in stark contrast to Putin’s strongly dominant personality pattern.

Accommodating leaders like Obama have a strong preference for negotiation over force.

Hard-nosed Putin

Although this predisposition can be a net positive under some situations, when dealing with hard-nosed individuals such as Putin, it can spell trouble. The ambitious, controlling, opportunistic Putin is sure to take advantage of Obama’s accommodating nature.

Political-psychological studies suggest that putative 2016 presidential candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton may be better suited than Obama to deal with Putin.

Comparing Clinton and Obama head-to-head, it is evident both are highly ambitious. However, where Obama is accommodating, Clinton is highly dominant.

The political implication of this personality difference is that Clinton would likely deal with Putin from a position of strength and articulate her position bluntly and with clarity, while refusing to let Putin outmaneuver her.

Granted, one could argue Clinton’s personal style — specifically her tendency to be assertively uncompromising — would run the risk of adding fuel to the fire, escalating the standoff with Russia over its annexation of Crimea.

Hardball Hillary

In reality, however, Clinton’s psychological profile underscores that she is a dutiful individual who would exercise due diligence in dealing with Putin and proceed prudently when playing hardball politics.

Putin, whose personality profile reveals a thin-skinned person who handles criticism poorly and becomes defensive, would be thrown off balance by the direct confrontation on which Clinton thrives.

Significant personality contrasts between Obama and Clinton offer insight into the political implications of their respective personal political styles. The politics of conciliation characteristic of Obama will likely wane in the next administration. Having been accustomed to the relative ease of dealing with the more conflict-averse Obama for the better part of a decade, Putin will be in for a rude awakening if Clinton is to hold the reins of power in the post-Obama era.

This is the opinion of Joe Trenzeluk, Inver Grove Heights, a junior psychology major at the College of St. Benedict and St. John’s University, where he is a summer research fellow in the Unit for the Study of Personality in Politics, directed by Aubrey Immelman.

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August 4, 2014 — Related report

Profile Hints at Putin Mindset

Russian president’s ambitious nature means he’ll never let West get ahead of him

Putin_AP-via-StCloudTimes
Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks Friday, Aug. 1, 2014 at the opening ceremony of the monument to the Heroes of World War I, behind him, on the day of the 100th anniversary of its beginning in Victory Park on Poklonnaya Hill in Moscow, Russia. (Photo credit: AP via St. Cloud Times)

By Joe Trenzeluk
St. Cloud Times
August 3, 2014

On July 17, 298 innocent victims were killed when Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 was shot down over Ukraine. As attempts to investigate the incident continue, international pressure has been placed on Russian President Vladimir Putin because it is believed the Russian military supplied Ukrainian pro-Russia separatists with the Buk surface-to-air missiles that downed the airliner.

Putin issued a statement that Russia will do “everything in its power” to assist with the investigation and offered his condolences to people who lost loved ones in the tragedy.

If Putin’s role in the current crisis in Ukraine, his relations with the Syrian regime and pro-Assad Iran, and ongoing reports of human rights violations in Russia are not enough to call into question Putin’s character and leadership qualities, the downing of Flight MH17 certainly has.

Empirical analysis of Putin’s personality at the College of St. Benedict and St. John’s University’s Unit for the Study of Personality in Politics reveals that Putin is a highly dominant, narcissistic leader with secondary features of high conscientiousness and substantial introversion.

In a nutshell, leaders of this kind may be labeled “ambitious (or expansionist) hostile enforcers.”

Identifying the personality configuration of political leaders matters because personality points to stable, enduring patterns in a person’s motives, thoughts and actions over time and across situations. Thus, accurate personality assessment allows us to anticipate a leader’s response to a broad range of contingencies.

Expansionist leader

In terms of foreign policy role orientation, the “high-dominance introvert” facet of Putin’s personality parallels what political psychologist Margaret Hermann has labeled an expansionist leader. Expansionists, like Adolf Hitler or Saddam Hussein, see the world as being “divided into ‘us’ and ‘them,’ ” based on a belief system in which conflict is viewed as inherent in the international system.

This worldview prompts a personal political style characterized by a “wariness of others’ motives” and a directive, controlling interpersonal orientation, resulting in a foreign policy “focused on issues of security and status,” favoring “low-commitment actions” and espousing “short-term, immediate change in the international arena.”

Expansionist leaders, according to Hermann, “are not averse to using the ‘enemy’ as a scapegoat,” and their rhetoric often may be “hostile in tone.”

Other common characteristics of expansionists include a high degree of power motivation, strong nationalism, an unwavering belief in one’s ability to control events, supreme self-confidence, distrust of others, and a very goal-directed level of task orientation — all of which are evident to varying degrees in Putin’s personality profile.

Putin is Russia

Putin believes the world is divided between his Russia and the West, often using “the West” or “democracy” as a scapegoat for his problems. Rising through the KGB and Russia’s political elite, he entwined himself with the history of Russia. Typical of narcissistic leaders with exalted self-concept and dreams of glory, he views his destiny and that of the Russian state as one and the same. Putin is Russia; Russia is Putin.

Although Putin shows no discernible signs of contemplating genocide or waging conventional war — sensation-seeking adventurousness ranks relatively low in his overall personality profile — he displays a desire for control and deeply entrenched feelings of resentment toward the West.

His world is a zero-sum game in which any gains by the West or by domestic opponents are considered moral threats to his power.

This is the opinion of Joe Trenzeluk, Inver Grove Heights, a junior psychology major at the College of St. Benedict and St. John’s University, where he is a summer research fellow in the Unit for the Study of Personality in Politics, directed by Aubrey Immelman.

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Personality Profile: Vladimir Putin and Barack Obama

Barack Obama’s Presidential Leadership Style (Sept. 8, 2012)


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A psychological profile of U.S. President Barack Obama, developed at the Unit for the Study of Personality in Politics during Obama’s 2008 and 2012 presidential campaigns, reveals that the president is a highly confident, moderately accommodating and deliberative, somewhat reserved personality type best described as a confident conciliator.


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As shown in the pie chart above, Obama is primarily an Ambitious/confident personality, complemented by secondary Accommodating/cooperative, Conscientious/respectful, and Retiring/reserved features.

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Barack Obama’s Personality Profile (Nov. 2, 2008)

Full report: The Political Personality of U.S. President Barack Obama (PDF)

A tweet from the account of Dmitry Rogozin, deputy prime minister of Russia, ridiculed Obama by juxtaposing an image of the Russian president with a cheetah and another of his American counterpart holding a puppy.

A tweet from the account of Dmitry Rogozin, deputy prime minister of Russia, ridiculed Obama by juxtaposing an image of the Russian president with a cheetah and another of his American counterpart holding a puppy.

A tweet from the account of Dmitry Rogozin, deputy prime minister of Russia, ridiculed Obama by juxtaposing an image of the Russian president with a cheetah and another of his American counterpart holding a puppy.