ISIL’s notion of a Caliphate is aligned with the concept of a community rather than of a state and strategic focus is on psychological rather than territorial control.
Col. Jeremy Mushtare is the commander of the 8th Psychological Operations Group (Airborne) located at Fort Bragg, NC. 8th POG (A) consists of 3rd PSYOP Battalion (A), 9th PSYOP Battalion (A), and a Headquarters and Headquarters Company. 3rd POB (A) supports operations around the globe with specialized expeditionary teams tailor fit to execute print, A/V, and broadcast activities. The unit also houses the Information Warfare Center and other capabilities designed to support our forces or compete with adversaries from the CONUS base. 9th POB (A) is the PSYOP Regiment’s National Mission Force (NMF) which is responsible for supporting Special Mission Units (SMU) across the world. Members of the PSYOP NMF are deployed specifically to address the most serious threats to U.S. National Security.
Dr. Ajit Maan is a narrative strategist focused on national security and international relations. She is founder and CEO of the U.S. based think-tank Narrative Strategies, Affiliated Faculty at George Mason University, member of the Brain Trust of the Weaponized Narrative Initiative of Arizona State University, author of Internarrative Identity: Placing the Self, Counter-Terrorism: Narrative Strategies, and co-editor of Soft Power on Hard Problems: Strategic Influence in Irregular Warfare. Her most recently published book is Plato’s Fear. Lieutenant Colonel (Ret.) Brian Steed is an instructor of military history at the U.S. Army’s Command and General Staff College. Having served in the Middle East for more than eight and a half years as a Foreign Area Officer, he is both a scholar and practitioner of cross-cultural influence. Published works include, among others, ISIS: An Introduction and Guide to the Islamic State and Bees and Spiders: Applied Cultural Awareness and the Art of Cross-Cultural Influence.
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