Small Wars Journal

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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 Voice of America | Mon, 02/11/2019 - 7:23am | 0 comments
Acting U.S. Defense chief Pat Shanahan said Monday the Islamic State group remains a "global presence," as U.S.-backed fighters work to clear the last enclave the militants hold in eastern Syria. Shanahan told reporters traveling with him on a trip to Afghanistan that when it comes to the degree of Islamic State's capabilities, that varies from "residual pockets to sleeper cells."
by Military Times | Mon, 02/11/2019 - 7:17am | 0 comments
"The U.S. is considering what cuts to U.S. force levels could support peace negotiations in Afghanistan while balancing risk there, Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan said Sunday."
by The Strategy Bridge | Mon, 02/11/2019 - 6:21am | 0 comments
"The global shift from interstate conflicts to civil wars has required a conceptual change in how impartiality is conceived, raising questions regarding the concrete meaning of impartiality, how to implement it, and whether it’s a desirable feature of UN peacekeeping."
by SWJ Editors | Mon, 02/11/2019 - 5:37am | 0 comments
H.R. McMaster, John Hannah, etal at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies - Continue on for an introduction an link to this detailed assessment.
by The Wall Street Journal, by Associated Press, by Voice of America | Mon, 02/11/2019 - 5:31am | 0 comments
Continue on for an update on the situation in Syria.
by Voice of America | Mon, 02/11/2019 - 5:25am | 0 comments
"President Donald Trump’s planned trip Monday to the border city of El Paso, Texas comes days before U.S. government funding is due to lapse once again and as suspense builds over Trump’s vague but persistent threat to declare a national emergency if Congress declines to pay for wall construction along the U.S.-Mexico border."
by Associated Press | Mon, 02/11/2019 - 4:45am | 0 comments
"The Trump administration’s special envoy for Afghanistan is returning to the country after stops in Europe and the Middle East for an extended diplomatic tour aimed at pushing a U.S. peace initiative."
by Voice of America | Sun, 02/10/2019 - 12:55am | 0 comments
"U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces said Saturday that they had begun an assault against Islamic State to clear the last enclave the militant group controls in eastern Syria."
by The Washington Post | Sun, 02/10/2019 - 12:36am | 0 comments
"Golsteyn, a captain and Green Beret soldier at the time, said he had taken up an ambush position in the Taliban stronghold of Marja when U.S. forces released the man, a suspected Taliban bombmaker known as Rasoul. What happened next is at the center of an Army investigation that has stretched years, resulting in a murder charge against Golsteyn in December."
by Voice of America | Sat, 02/09/2019 - 1:11pm | 0 comments
"The top U.S. negotiator in peace talks with Afghanistan’s Taliban leaders says he hopes a peace agreement can be achieved before Afghanistan’s next set of elections just five months away."
by The New York Times | Sat, 02/09/2019 - 11:55am | 0 comments
"When terrorists in Africa delivered two devastating attacks last month, they invoked a battle cry seldom heard in recent militant activity on the continent: the Palestinian cause."
by Military Times | Sat, 02/09/2019 - 12:36am | 0 comments
"Negotiations that would lead to a withdrawal of U.S. forces from Afghanistan continue to advance, but are a long way from completion, the top U.S. envoy to U.S.-Taliban peace talks said Friday."
by The Washington Post | Sat, 02/09/2019 - 12:33am | 0 comments
"President Trump’s decision to pull U.S. troops out of Syria has triggered a scramble among international powers and local forces to figure out how to fill the potentially destabilizing vacuum the Americans will leave behind."
by Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, by Voice of America | Sat, 02/09/2019 - 12:28am | 0 comments
"U.S. peace envoy to Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad says that although talks with the Taliban have produced the framework for a peace deal there is still a 'long way to go' before a final agreement. When Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani laid out the red carpet in 2017 for controversial Afghan warlord Gulbuddin Hekmatyar — once known as 'the Butcher of Kabul' for his role in the bloody conflict for the control of the capital in the 1990s — many thought he was trying to isolate the central Taliban leadership by luring factions to break away and join the government. It didn't work."
by Military Times | Sat, 02/09/2019 - 12:25am | 1 comment
"U.S. counter-terrorism missions will soon place more emphasis on a little-known Pentagon program designed to help “surrogate forces,” rather than traditional allied units that are dependent on U.S. training, advice and assistance."
by Voice of America | Sat, 02/09/2019 - 12:19am | 0 comments
"The possible use of U.S. military force to oust Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro raises concerns about the possible costs in lives and unintended consequences that may come from committing American troops to fight and die in another foreign conflict."
by The Times | Fri, 02/08/2019 - 10:30am | 0 comments
"The war for the 'caliphate' is almost over. But it is not the end for hundreds of Isis fighters surrounded in eastern Syria, or the thousands who have already escaped."
by Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty | Fri, 02/08/2019 - 9:27am | 0 comments
"As the prospect of a negotiated end to the war in Afghanistan is closer than it has ever been, the peace process with the Taliban could be derailed by competing agendas. Longtime rivals Russia and the United States have backed separate negotiations with different stakeholders, muddling the complex process."
by The Wall Street Journal | Fri, 02/08/2019 - 5:03am | 0 comments
"The Pentagon is preparing to pull all U.S. forces out of Syria by the end of April, even though the Trump administration has yet to come up with a plan to protect its Kurdish partners from attack when they leave, current and former U.S. officials said."
by Voice of America | Fri, 02/08/2019 - 5:00am | 0 comments
"Fears that Washington is increasingly losing influence across the globe are starting to come to fruition in Africa, where a top military official says Russia is playing on perceived U.S. weaknesses to gain leverage and resources. The most alarming inroads have come in African countries where leaders are seeking to consolidate power, the commander of U.S. Africa Command, Gen. Thomas Waldhauser, told lawmakers Thursday, adding Russia seems to have its sights set on areas that could give them an edge over U.S. allies."
by Marine Corps Times | Fri, 02/08/2019 - 4:57am | 0 comments
"While much of the conflicts across the Middle East tend toward low tech and low intensity, the fight in Syria is providing Marine commanders with a wealth of knowledge and experience for a future fight with near peer rivals like Russia and China."
by Stars & Stripes | Fri, 02/08/2019 - 4:48am | 0 comments
"The U.S. military’s airstrike campaign in Somalia won’t be enough to defeat Islamic militants in the country, where indigenous forces need to 'step up' the fight, the commander for U.S. Africa Command said Thursday."
by The British Broadcasting Corporation | Fri, 02/08/2019 - 4:46am | 0 comments
"IS once controlled 88,000 sq km (34,000 sq miles) of territory stretching from western Syria to eastern Iraq, imposed its brutal rule on almost eight million people, and generated billions of dollars in revenue from oil, extortion, robbery and kidnapping. Now, between 1,000 and 1,500 militants are believed to be left in a 50 sq km (20 sq mile) area in the Middle Euphrates River Valley, near Syria's border with Iraq."
by The Strategic Studies Institute | Fri, 02/08/2019 - 4:44am | 0 comments
This monograph focuses on an understudied, but yet a critically important and timely component of land warfare, related to the battlefield use of chemical weapons by contemporary threat forces.
by InSight Crime | Thu, 02/07/2019 - 1:46pm | 0 comments
"A new pro-government Venezuelan militia or 'colectivo' allegedly trained by Colombian rebels may have posted itself alongside security forces on the Venezuela-Colombia border."