SWJ Blog is a multi-author blog publishing news and commentary on the various goings on across the broad community of practice.  We gladly accept guest posts from serious voices in the community.

Daniel R. Green, “In the Warlords’ Shadow: Special Operations Forces, the Afghans, and Their Fight Against the Taliban” (Naval Institute Press, 2017)

"Sixteen years after the 9/11 attacks, there is a fair amount of good news about the state of the battle against jihadist terrorists and some troubling trends."

SWJ dodges a bullet...

SWJ should be up for next 12-24 hours or so and then the unknown. I live in the Tampa Bay area so there is a chance I will not be posting for a few days - Irma is approaching. Stay tuned.

“U.S.-backed forces in Syria announced a fresh offensive around the Islamic State’s most important remaining stronghold.”

“U.S. intelligence analysts have gained valuable insights into Islamic State’s planning and personnel from a vast cache of digital data.”

"Monday’s 16th anniversary of the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001 might be less mournful if we could say that the threat of jihadist terrorism had receded or disappeared."

"The referendum’s approval would start the process of turning the semiautonomous region into an independent state."

“Frustration with the stalemate in Afghanistan has broadened the domestic debate over U.S. strategy there.”

Continue on for information on the latest Mad Scientist call for ideas.

“A centralized political system in Afghanistan only intensifies the competition for power and increases the cost of holding the country together.”

“The A-29 Super Tucano Provides Major Force Multiplier For Counterinsurgency and Counterterrorism Forces.”

“Latest advance by Assad regime highlights the risk of a clash with Washington’s Kurdish-led allies.”

"The military does not have a very impressive record of achieving victory. It has won no wars since 1945—especially if victory is defined as achieving an objective at acceptable cost....

“The deaths are a reflection of the heavy price the agency has paid in a secret, nearly 16-year-old war.”

In this report, a former senior policy adviser and a USIP senior specialist explore the nexus of religion and violent extremism.

“The latest in a series of high-level reports and recommendations for revamping the State Department proposes expanding the size and mission of the USAID.”

British COIN campaigns by Adeyinka Makinde in the Sri Lanka Guardian.

“Congress should not forget that volunteers are immersing themselves and serving in more than 60 countries around the world for modest sums.”

Experts warn that what might seem to be a Lebanese victory could be a Trojan horse hiding Iranian-backed Hezbollah, which emerges as the main victor in the operation.

“An Air Force experiment to demonstrate the capabilities of off-the-shelf platforms may lead to a low-cost solution for a light attack and close-air support aircraft.”

“The Iraqi offensive, planned and launched less than two months after a punishing, nearly 270-day battle in Mosul, impressed some U.S. advisers.”

“As a former military contractor, I cannot imagine a worse outcome for Afghanistan or the U.S. than handing everything over to mercenaries.”

“As the Trump Administration reviews its counter-terrorism policies and strategies, it should apply the lessons of the Village Stability Operations program.”

“In an impromptu exchange with reporters at the Pentagon on Thursday, Mattis was asked about interpretations of comments he made Wednesday.”

“Hundreds of battle-hardened fighters were positioned inside most houses and high buildings inside the town, making it difficult for government forces to make any progress.”

“The retired Marine general has become a force for calm, order and, in the eyes of the president’s critics, quiet resistance.”

“The bulk of the roughly 4,000 additional troops headed to Afghanistan will probably be composed of thousands of paratroopers from two units.”

“Iraq's prime minister says Nineveh province has been "fully liberated" from so-called Islamic State, after the district of Tal Afar was recaptured.”

“SOUTHCOM’s switch from tactical to strategic means a mission to ‘detect, illuminate, disrupt’ criminal activities.”