Three recent articles in Special Warfare recommended via e-mail (Hat tip to COL Dave Maxwell):
The Great UW Debate by Colonel David M. Witty.
The Special Forces community has been trying to articulate a definition for unconventional warfare, or UW, for well over 50 years. The pages of previous issues of this magazine are full of articles discussing the definition and scope of UW. The community's failure to clearly state a concise definition of UW to itself, the Army, the joint force, and other government agencies makes it appear that it is at best, doctrinally adrift, or at worst, intellectually lacking. Given the increased emphasis on irregular warfare and the fact that UW is one of the five IW activities, the SF community needs to agree on what UW is or risk losing credibility.
Effective Use of FID: Expands SF Influence by Captain Stephen C. Flanagan.
During the past six years of combat rotations to Iraq, United States Army Special Forces have refined their lines of operation, or LOOs, to meet the ever-evolving challenges presented on the battlefield of counterinsurgency, or COIN. The LOOs directed by combined joint special-operations task forces, or CJSOTFs, in Iraq and Afghanistan have varied greatly over time and have included: targeting enemy networks, conducting tribal engagements, conducting information and psychological operations, conducting combined lethal operations and developing networks of influence. However, one LOO that has remained the constant emphasis for the 10th SF Group in shaping the battlefield in Operation Iraqi Freedom is the conduct of foreign internal defense, or FID.
The Lion, the Starfish and the Spider by Chief Warrant Officer 3 Bruce E. DeFeyter.
Today policy-makers, law-enforcement officials and military leaders struggle to come up with innovative ideas for neutralizing terrorist organizations and their activities. One such idea, not given much thought until after Sept. 11, is attacking terrorist financing structures, methods and sources. Attempting to destroy terrorists by denying them financing or interrupting their money stream is unlikely to succeed as a sole point of effort for at least three reasons. First, organizationally, terrorists are structured to slip behind, around and underneath centralized organizations, rules and bureaucracies. Second, terrorist organizations can conduct operations for literally pennies on the dollar, and any serious effort to interrupt these financially insignificant activities will have serious second- and third-order effects on the larger financial community. Third, even with the thousands of laws enacted and the historically unprecedented cooperation between partner nations, terrorism continues to escalate by nearly every conceivable measure. Bluntly put, counterterrorism financing reform simply doesn't work.