Small Wars Journal

Blog Posts

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.

by SWJ Editors | Sun, 04/08/2018 - 3:17pm | 0 comments
Via Arab News - "As Iraqi forces battled Daesh, former general Abdel Karim Khalaf came to a sad realization - they were fighting against some of his former army comrades. The tactics Daesh terrorists used - from the way they dug tunnels to their construction of defenses - were lifted straight from the manual of the old Iraqi armed forces under dictator Saddam Hussein."
by Voice of America | Sun, 04/08/2018 - 10:01am | 0 comments
“The grass-roots call for peace by some residents that began as a sit-in in Afghanistan’s restive Helmand province is gathering momentum and spreading to other provinces of the country… A group of young local men began a sit-in at the capital of the province and demanded an end to violence. Later, women joined the sit-in and urged the warring sides to end the vicious cycle of violence that has been tearing through the nation.”
by Reuters | Sat, 04/07/2018 - 7:24pm | 0 comments
"Japan on Saturday activated its first marine unit since World War Two trained to counter invaders occupying Japanese islands along the edge of the East China Sea that Tokyo fears are vulnerable to attack by China."
by The Jamestown Foundation | Sat, 04/07/2018 - 10:54am | 0 comments
Continue on for links to all the latest articles in the most recent edition of The Jamestown Foundation's "Terrorism Monitor".
by SWJ Editors | Sat, 04/07/2018 - 9:12am | 0 comments
Continue on for a 6 April official statement by outgoing National Security Adviser Lieutenant General H.R. McMaster.
by The Washington Post | Sat, 04/07/2018 - 8:35am | 0 comments
"The Pentagon’s mission against the Islamic State in Syria remains open-ended despite President Trump’s promise of a quick U.S. withdrawal. Military leaders are focusing on pushing the once-powerful group out of the small foothold it controls in eastern Syria and ensuring that it cannot plot attacks against the United States, a task defense officials have suggested will require a U.S. footprint after the fighting stops."
by USA Today | Fri, 04/06/2018 - 11:06pm | 0 comments
"American and international strategy towards the horrific conflict in Syria is at a crossroads. ISIS has been largely defeated militarily on the physical battlefield. The top goal of both President Obama and President Trump has been partially achieved, through a strategy they both helped develop and implement. The temptation for Americans in general, and the Trump administration specifically, may be to declare victory and go home — as in fact Trump has just signaled he would like to do, as soon as possible."
by USA Today | Fri, 04/06/2018 - 1:36pm | 0 comments
Our war in Afghanistan is still going on, thousands are dying but people stopped paying attention. Trump is doing bare minimum and Russia is involved.
by RAND Corporation | Fri, 04/06/2018 - 10:00am | 0 comments
The authors examine historical antecedents of political warfare and current-day practices through in-depth case studies of Russia, Iran, and the Islamic State. They use these cases to derive common attributes of modern political warfare.
by The Modern War Institute | Fri, 04/06/2018 - 9:26am | 0 comments
Six Security Force Assistance Brigades are apparently not enough advisory capability for the US Army. Last month during a panel discussion at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, Brig. Gen. Brian Mennes, the Army’s force management director, briefly mentioned the Army has “a vision of creating two security force assistance divisions and corps.” SFABs can cover the tactical advisory mission, but there is no complementary advisory organization that addresses the operational and strategic level advise-and-assist mission. These new headquarters are intended to fill that gap.
by The U.S. Naval Institute | Fri, 04/06/2018 - 8:51am | 0 comments
A recently returned U.S. commander in Afghanistan gave an optimistic assessment of the combined progress of U.S. and Afghan forces against the Taliban. Newly-installed provincial leaders fixed on bringing the Taliban to heel and the coalition commitment to provide assistance in changing the situation on the ground, the Marine Brig. Gen. Roger Turner Jr. who commanded Task Force Southwest said on Friday at the Brookings Institution.
by The Washington Post | Thu, 04/05/2018 - 9:22pm | 0 comments
President Trump’s pronouncement that he would be pulling troops out of Syria “very soon” has laid bare a major source of tension between the president and his generals. Trump has made winning on the battlefields of Iraq, Syria and Afghanistan a central tenet of his foreign policy and tough-guy identity. But Trump and the military hold frequently opposing ideas about exactly what winning means.
by The New York Times | Thu, 04/05/2018 - 11:21am | 0 comments
On five trips to battle-scarred Iraq, journalists for The New York Times scoured old Islamic State offices, gathering thousands of files abandoned by the militants as their ‘caliphate’ crumbled.
by DoD News | Wed, 04/04/2018 - 10:48pm | 0 comments
President Donald J. Trump has directed the Defense and Homeland Security departments to work with state governors to deploy National Guard troops to the southern U.S. border, a top official said today. Speaking to reporters at the White House, Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen M. Nielsen said the troops would augment U.S. Customs and Border Protection and provide support where needed to secure the border with Mexico.
by Voice of America | Wed, 04/04/2018 - 10:30pm | 0 comments
White House officials on Wednesday laid out plans to send National Guard troops to the United States’ southern border with Mexico, as part of President Donald Trump’s efforts to confront what he says is a growing problem with illegal immigrants. The decision to deploy the U.S. military to the border represents a major new aspect of Trump’s wide-ranging immigration crackdown. But major parts of the move are unclear, including how many troops will be sent, when they will deploy, or what exactly they will do.
by DoD News | Wed, 04/04/2018 - 3:28pm | 0 comments
Administration officials, military leaders, senior Iraqi representatives and regional experts discussed views on Iraq and Syria at the U.S. Institute of Peace here today. Military efforts to defeat the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria are about six to eight months ahead of where officials thought they would be at this point, Army Gen. Joseph L. Votel, commander of U.S. Central Command, said. The success throughout the campaign has been quite extraordinary, he added
by Military Times | Wed, 04/04/2018 - 2:01pm | 0 comments
"The Pentagon is looking at ways it can fulfill President Donald Trump’s request to have the military guard the U.S.-Mexico border, spokesman Dana White said. As it has become apparent that Congress was not going to give Trump the full funding he has requested to build a border wall, the president has looked to the military to fill the gap."
by The New York Times | Wed, 04/04/2018 - 11:49am | 0 comments
"The White House said on Wednesday that the United States is committed to continuing to fight the Islamic State in Syria, signaling a retreat by President Trump from his insistence that the 2,000 American forces there quickly return home from the conflict."
by Center for Strategic & International Studies | Wed, 04/04/2018 - 10:27am | 0 comments
How has al Qaeda fared in Syria? What have been its most significant challenges? What do answers to these questions suggest about al Qaeda’s future in Syria and the region? Looking forward, the most significant challenge may be assessing what happens next in Syria and the region.
by The Wall Street Journal | Wed, 04/04/2018 - 12:08am | 0 comments
"The U.S. military has created a new precedent for how to counter Russian 'hybrid war.' Set in a murky clash of arms in Syria in early February, and one averted in March, this precedent—you might even call it a 'red line'—will reverberate from the Middle East to the Black and Baltic seas."
by The Wall Street Journal | Tue, 04/03/2018 - 11:39pm | 0 comments
"President Donald Trump said Tuesday he wanted the U.S. military to 'bring our troops back home' from Syria, taking a position at odds with many top advisers who worry that leaving the country too soon would cede ground to Iran, Russia, their proxies and other extremist groups."
by Australian Defence Force Journal | Tue, 04/03/2018 - 11:23pm | 0 comments
Continue on for links to all the new articles in the latest issue of ADFJ.
by The Washington Post | Tue, 04/03/2018 - 10:35pm | 0 comments
"President Trump on Tuesday repeated his desire to quickly “get out” of Syria, even as his top commander for the Middle East outlined the need for an ongoing military presence there."
by The British Broadcasting Corporation | Mon, 04/02/2018 - 4:36pm | 0 comments
"The US accuses Russia of trying to destabilise Afghanistan by supporting the Taliban. Senior US officials have been saying for months that Moscow is even supplying the militants with weapons."
by Agence France-Presse | Mon, 04/02/2018 - 11:44am | 0 comments
"Iran, Russia and Turkey have teamed up to forge a strong if brittle tripartite alliance aimed at holding ascendancy in Syria, taking advantage of the West's reluctance to engage militarily in the country."