The author, Joel Z. Williams, joined the U.S. Air Force at the age of eighteen and served as an enlisted man during Gulf War I. After completing his four-year commitment, Mr. Williams separated honorably from the military and worked a variety of jobs before deciding to use his G.I Bill to pay for college. In 2000, he began attending Missouri State University with intentions of becoming a high school teacher. A year later, the dramatic events of 9/11 profoundly affected Mr. Williams and he redirected his studies away from Education and towards understanding the world’s rapidly changing geopolitical dynamics by majoring in History and Political Science. Mr. Williams graduated from MSU with a Bachelor of Arts degree in History during the summer of 2006; he has completed several freelance writing projects and began a small business since that time.
Even before graduating from college, Mr. Williams began writing letters to the editor and opinion / editorial pieces to his local newspaper, the Springfield News-Leader about issues relating to Islamic fundamentalism and regarding the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. After publishing ten of his op/ed pieces, the News-Leader invited Mr. Williams to serve on its Editorial advisory board, a position which allowed him to conduct an interview with Missouri Senator Claire McCaskill (D-MO).
Mr. Williams has since written several papers on military affairs and Islam; two issues he knows extremely well. In 2005, he penned a white paper entitled: A Calculated Risk: A Fresh Perspective on How the United States Could Win the War on Terror and in 2006 he authored, The Evolution of a Viable Military Strategy: How technological advances combined with a more ideologically agile military could help the U. S. overcome the threat of asymmetric warfare by using a process of constantly evolving Principles of War known simply as Warmobbing. Mr. Williams submitted the latter work in a competition sponsored by the US Naval Society and although he only managed to get to the seventeenth slot during the final selection process, the American Naval Institute chose Warmobbing for publication in their quarterly newsletter Proceedings. Mr. Williams has also recently submitted a twenty page white paper entitled, Fighting the Good Fight: How Culturally Specific Gifts for Civilians Offers Warfighters Asymmetric Advantages in Modern Conflicts to the U.S. Marine Corps for publication in their quarterly magazine, The Marine Corps Gazette. In addition to his non-fiction work, Mr. Williams has completed twenty chapters of a military- espionage thriller called A Rational Fear: Project Snakecharmer that he hopes to complete by April 2009.
In August of 2008, Mr. Williams started a small business called Products for Peaceful Operations (PROPs) with the intent of supplying inexpensive, regionally appropriate, and culturally sensitive civilian gifts for distribution by U.S. Defense Department personnel. Mr. Williams envisioned PROPs as a way to equip American warfighters operating in contested areas with small, useful gifts that they could carry and distribute to civilians, thereby, fostering goodwill and friendship between soldiers and civilians through the gifting process.
Please Visit Mr. Williams' blog at joelzwilliamsblogspot