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Younghusband of Coming Anarchy has an excellent post that works off of Dan of tdaxp’s ( see links below) on 5GW warfare. A Nice essay that was linked to by John Robb as well. Here’s is a snippet:

“Al Qaeda started off as a dense network of highly connected individuals that conducted training etc in the hills of Afghanistan. Once they were smashed by the US and ran to the hills the amount of direct control held by bin Laden diminished greatly. Direct interaction was replaced by globally distributed passive communication that outlined the group’s objectives, and an even more distributed network was left on their own to do what they can for “the cause”: we had the disappearance of Al Qaeda the “terrorist organization”, and the appearance of Al Qaeda the “movement.” There were all sorts of groups that stood up to claim membership to the greater network of AQ after committing some act. Look at “Al Qaeda in Iraq” and other regional franchises of the organization. Copycat groups like the London bombers also appeared.

Now, maybe a core organization of Al Qaeda still exists, but there seems to be a much more loose global community surrounding the AQ idea. This begs the question: could AQ 2.0, or even some future “terrorist organization”, be the result of an emergent community? Emergence is a bottom-up organization of complex systems, where a “number of agents operate in an environment, forming more complex behaviours as a collective.”

Read the whole thing.

Further 5GW Links:


Soundlessness and Formlessness

Dreaming 5th Generation War

Go Deep


Fifth Generation War in the OODA Loop

Unto the Fifth Generation Of War


5GW Tutorial

Limitations of 5GW

3 Responses to “”

  1. Curtis Gale Weeks Says:

    Ah, it’s nice to know that when I’m having severe blogger’s block, some of my old entries can carry the day! 😉

    Thanks for the links, Mark. 5GW is a topic I’ve been wanting to cover in more detail, but I’ve had no recent epiphanies. (Blogger’s block.)

    Ahem; my meatiest post on 5GW was 5GW Effectors. I think it might be time for an update, though. It’s too bad we don’t have a “5GW Blog” where all these things can be collected, to make keeping up with the discussion easier than remembering links and hopping about to put it all together.

  2. mark Says:

    Hi Curtis,

    You’re welcome. Everyone who writes eventually suffers from a dry spell and blogging itself can seem a grind at times. I find when the ideas aren’t flowing that taking the time to engage in learning something completely unfamiliar helps stimulate my creativity.

    Good luck on the job hunt too BTW !

  3. Curtis Gale Week Says:

    And now I have, Initiating 5GW!

    I suppose that reading the comments on the Coming Anarchy thread, and Chet Richards’ “Riding the Tiger” for the first time, created a thaw.

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