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 The Los Angeles Times | Fri, 01/18/2019 - 7:23am | 0 comments
"The Colombian rebel group known as the National Liberation Army delivered an unwelcome new year message, exploding two bombs on the Caño Limon-to-Coveñas oil pipeline in the eastern province of Arauca."
by Voice of America | Fri, 01/18/2019 - 5:44am | 0 comments
"With a single deadly blast Wednesday, the Islamic State group did more than rattle the calm in the northern Syrian town of Manbij. The terror group also rekindled the debate over its much-heralded demise."
by The Strategic Studies Institute | Fri, 01/18/2019 - 5:24am | 1 comment
The Iraq War has been the costliest U.S. conflict since the Vietnam War. To date, few official studies have been conducted to review what happened, why it happened, and what lessons should be drawn. The U.S. Army in the Iraq War is the Army’s initial operational level analysis of this conflict, written in narrative format, with assessments and lessons embedded throughout the work. This study reviews the conflict from a Landpower perspective and includes the contributions of coalition allies, the U.S. Marine Corps, and special operations forces.
by Associated Press | Fri, 01/18/2019 - 4:50am | 0 comments
"U.S. peace envoy Zalmay Khalilzad arrived in Pakistan on Thursday, the last leg of a regional tour aimed at finding a negotiated conclusion to Afghanistan’s 17-year war, which would end the U.S.'s longest military engagement."
by The Wall Street Journal | Fri, 01/18/2019 - 3:29am | 0 comments
"Islamic State is reverting to the guerrilla-style tactics it employed in its early days to strike targets, including a suicide bombing it claimed in northern Syria this week, as it stands to lose the last sliver of territory it controls."
by Military Times | Fri, 01/18/2019 - 3:24am | 0 comments
"The Trump administration has been contemplating a massive change in the U.S. commitment to Afghanistan, as the war there enters a new year. In late December, U.S. defense officials confirmed reports that they were planning for the possibility of bringing home up to 7,000 of the roughly 14,000 U.S. troops currently serving in Afghanistan."
by The Wall Street Journal | Thu, 01/17/2019 - 4:52pm | 0 comments
"Somalia is one in a series of American wars unleashed by the Sept. 11 attacks, from Afghanistan and Syria to Niger and Yemen. On any given day, across a swath of Africa, South Asia and the Middle East, hundreds of U.S. troops might find themselves dropping bombs on or exchanging gunfire with any number of armed Islamist organizations—al-Shabaab, Islamic State, the Taliban, the Haqqani network and al Qaeda’s branches in the Maghreb or the Arabian Peninsula."
by Voice of America | Thu, 01/17/2019 - 10:39am | 0 comments
"Pakistan has intensified efforts to keep the U.S.-led dialogue with the Afghan Taliban on track, but official sources in Islamabad maintain the responsibility for the 'success or failure' of the fledgling peace process rests 'exclusively' with the two negotiating sides."
by The Washington Post | Thu, 01/17/2019 - 10:04am | 0 comments
"The alleged defeat of the group by anti-ISIS coalition forces was Trump’s main argument to justify his decision to withdraw U.S. military personnel from Syria, despite objections by his own advisers. Less than a month later, on Wednesday, four Americans were killed in an attack in the Syrian city of Manbij, inevitably raising new doubts over any assessment that the Islamic State is beaten."
by The New York Times | Thu, 01/17/2019 - 9:48am | 0 comments
"As the platoon commander, it was my job to handle any Iraqi police we encountered. Marines flanked my sides, loose but ready for the violence that could potentially accompany any encounter in Anbar. We stared at one another; I shook his hand and exhausted my Arabic with a single greeting. I smiled at him and he smiled back, each of us trying to communicate an absence of malice."
by | Thu, 01/17/2019 - 12:16am | 0 comments
"The U.S. Army's chief of staff said Wednesday that the service's 2nd Security Force Assistance Brigade will deploy to Afghanistan despite the plan to withdraw about 7,000 U.S. forces from the war-torn country."
by Defense One | Thu, 01/17/2019 - 12:12am | 1 comment
"For the first time, a senior U.S. military official has commented on President Trump’s late-December decision to quit Syria, confirming publicly that American troops are planning to leave once ISIS is defeated on the ground."
by Military Times | Thu, 01/17/2019 - 12:11am | 0 comments
"A year after the Iraqi special operations units that lead the effort to defeat ISIS and suffered high casualty rates was reduced by nearly half its force in doing so, the lead inspector of the Defense Department will evaluate whether U.S. and coalition assistance to those units are enabling them to continue to defeat insurgents."
by Military Times | Wed, 01/16/2019 - 6:38pm | 0 comments
"Two U.S. service members, one Department of Defense civilian and one contractor were killed by an explosion while conducting a local engagement in the northern Syrian town of Manbij on Wednesday."
by Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty | Wed, 01/16/2019 - 2:14pm | 0 comments
"U.S. peace envoy Zalmay Khalilzad says that a peaceful end to the 17-year conflict in Afghanistan requires the Taliban to engage in direct talks with the Afghan government, which they have consistently refused to do."
by The Strategist | Wed, 01/16/2019 - 11:43am | 0 comments
"After more than 17 years, the time has come to accept two important truths about the war in Afghanistan. The first is that there will be no military victory by the government and its American and NATO partners. Afghan forces, while better than they were, are not good enough and are unlikely ever to be capable of defeating the Taliban."
by Proceedings | Wed, 01/16/2019 - 11:21am | 0 comments
"Naval expeditionary forces are the major power in littoral operations. No matter the mission or crisis operation—from humanitarian assistance and disaster relief to full combat power projection—expeditionary forces provide the complete force package in any scalable operation."
by The Wall Street Journal | Wed, 01/16/2019 - 10:53am | 0 comments
"Islamic State claimed responsibility for a bomb blast Wednesday in a Syrian city under U.S.-backed Kurdish control that killed at least three American troops, according to U.S. officials, underscoring the threat the extremist group still poses as the Trump administration prepares to withdraw troops from the country."
by The Wall Street Journal | Wed, 01/16/2019 - 3:05am | 0 comments
"Counterterrorism forces were locked in a standoff with suspected al-Shabaab militants in an upscale hotel and office complex in Kenya’s capital Wednesday, more than 16 hours after the deadly attack began."
by Voice of America | Wed, 01/16/2019 - 12:33am | 0 comments
"Zalmay Khalilzad, the man responsible for overseeing America’s negotiations with the Afghan Taliban, arrived Tuesday night in Kabul, after making stops in India, the United Arab Emirates, and China. He is expected to visit Islamabad next. His outreach to regional players continues despite what seems like a setback in talks with the Taliban."
by Marine Corps Times | Tue, 01/15/2019 - 1:10am | 0 comments
"A group of 300 Marines and sailors recently completed a rotation in Central America that could be the foundation of a new multinational task force for everything from natural disaster to security responses."
by Military Times | Tue, 01/15/2019 - 1:03am | 0 comments
"The Pentagon announced late Monday that it is extending the mission of active duty troops to the Mexico border through September, marking almost a year-long domestic deployment of forces there."
by Deutsche Welle | Tue, 01/15/2019 - 12:55am | 0 comments
"The US and Turkish presidents moved from Twitter to the telephone to exchange their views over the US-allied Kurdish fighters in Syria. Washington is insisting the anti-"Islamic State" fighters should not be harmed."
by SWJ Editors | Mon, 01/14/2019 - 6:00pm | 0 comments
America at War: This Map Shows Where in the World the U.S. Military Is Combating Terrorism by Stephanie Savell and 5W Infographics - Smithsonian Magazine
by Stars & Stripes | Mon, 01/14/2019 - 9:30am | 0 comments
"The task force was developed in the wake of the 2012 Benghazi attacks on U.S. diplomatic buildings in Libya, which resulted in the deaths of four Americans, including U.S. ambassador Christopher Stevens. It was a wake-up call for U.S. Africa Command, which lacked its own forces at the ready to send in an emergency."