Michael Johnson

Michael Johnson
Defense Research Analyst, Sr


M.A. in theater operations, Command & General Staff College; M.A. in international relations, Monterey Institute of International Studies; M.A. in strategic studies, Command & Gen. Staff College; B.S. in European studies, U.S. Military Academy at West Point


Michael Johnson is a former U.S. Army strategic plans and policy officer with expertise in military strategy, risk assessment, joint campaign planning, joint and Army operations, and doctrine. His key assignments included serving as special assistant for the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Joint Staff J-5 Strategy Division, speechwriter for the Army Vice Chief of Staff, HQDA G-3/5/7 Army Transformation Office, and operational planner at U.S. Third Army (CFLCC) and I Corps. Since joining RAND, he has worked on the evolving defense strategy, Russia-NATO waragames, options to strengthen deterrence, Army operational roles in Asia, force sufficiency, modernization and risk analysis.

Selected Publications

Karl Mueller, David Shlapak, David Ochmanek and Michael Johnson, "In Defense of a War-game: Bolstering Deterrence on NATO's Eastern Flank," War on the Rocks, 2016

David Shlapak and Michael Johnson, "Outnumbered, Outranged, Outgunned: How Russia defeats NATO," War on the Rocks, 2016

Shlapak, David A., Michael Johnson, Reinforcing Deterrence on NATO's Eastern Flank: Wargaming the Defense of the Baltics, RAND Corporation (RR-1253), 2016

Admiral Michael Mullen, assisted by Colonel Michael Johnson, Chairman's Risk Assessment, The Joint Staff, 2010

Michael Johnson, Strange Gravity: Toward a Unified Theory of Joint Warfighting, U.S. Army School of Advanced Military Studies, 2001

Michael Johnson, Clausewitz on Kosovo, U.S. Army School of Advanced Military Studies, 2000

Michael Johnson, The Future of Just War Theory, U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, 2000

Michael Johnson, The Causes of State Failure, Monterey Institute of International Studies, 1998