zenpundit.com » Blog Archive


A good time to push the new, tie up loose ends and entertain a few tangents. No theme today.

Top billing far and away goes to the thread “Kilcullen — New Theories for a New Way of War ” at The Small Wars Council, begun by DNI’s Fabius Maximus. The high quality of the discussion and the no-holds barred debate makes this one a definite ” must read” for anyone interested in COIN, 4GW, military strategy, defense policy or Iraq. It is long, so pour yourself a cup of coffee ( or something stronger) and enjoy.

Dan of tdaxp completes his series on The Wary Guerilla that I first featured here. The series in its entirety:

1. Abstract 2. Terrorism 3. Predictions 4. An Experiment 5. Results 6. Absolute Guerrilla
7. Those Who Cause Less Pain 8. Future Research 9. Political Implications 10. Bibliography

Chris Heffinger – “The Ideological Voices of the Jihadi Movement” at Jamestown Foundation.

Nathan Freier – ” Primacy without a Plan? ” in PARAMETERS .

Collounsbury – “Islamic MBA

Wiggins at Opposed System Design -“Knowing the Enemy Part III: Sources of Radicalization” ( Part II. and Part I. here).

Wretchard at The Belmont Club -” The Blogosphere at War

Colonel W. Patrick Lang – “A Concert of the Greater Middle East” at The National Interest

Why the U.S. Should Spring for a New Particle Accelerator” at SEED .

2006 a Year of Invention” in New Scientist.com

That’s it !

6 Responses to “”

  1. Eddie Says:

    FM certainly embarks on quite the crusade there.

    Kilcullen could perhaps consider the viability of using the new Africa command as a test lab for most of his ideas… though from the personal testimonies of some of the SWC members, they’re already utilizing his observations and works.

    Your observation about Indonesia is certainly true, yet I wonder what he and people who heed his advice can observe and implement among the “sea of hundreds of tribes” in Nigeria, Sudan, Chad, Congo, Kenya and Ethiopia among others.

    BTW, in reading SWC more often than ever before, I notice one country rarely mentioned that seems to be constantly fighting (at my last count, 6) small wars and dealing with insurgencies on a regular basis; India. The wealth of knowledge and experience of the practitioners at SWC represent an interesting relatively untapped resource and opportunity for America and India to explore; cooperation and education on COIN and force transformation to meet the challenges of a 4GWesque security environment.

  2. Dan tdaxp Says:

    Links to twelve different tdaxp urls.

    I think that’s a new record!

    Long Live the Zen Pundit!

  3. Fabius Maximus Says:

    Eddie — great idea.

    The War Nerd has wondered why someone like Tom Clancy, with a few hundred million in cash, did not set up as a war lord in some rimland state. Hire some mercs, and test some of these shiny 4gw doctrines.

    On the other hand, Martin van Creveld has suggested bombing insurgents with the countless manuals, books, and such about 4GW. Devastation from the skies!

    More seriously, Kilcullen follows the grand tradition of insurgent warfare of missing the primary bifurcation of insurgent wars: domestic vs. domestic, foreigner vs. domestic.

    The 4GW wins for the incumbents are usually the former. Indonesia. India. Malaysia (although the Brits, having better PR, took full credit for what was just an assist).

    Lawrence of Arabia’s Arab revolt was foreign vs. domestic, with Lawrence helping the locals win.

    These victories tell us almost nothing about winning in these things. Except perhaps to avoid these wars.

    Until we have an insurgency on American soil. Then we can profitably study them.

  4. mark Says:

    Hi Eddie, Dan, FM

    About once a year for the last few years, I attend a conference at a nearby university which has a fine interdisciplinary program on Southeast Asia. Indonesia inevitably is included as a session option and they have regularly brought forward folks with deep ” in-country” as well as academic experience. Usually, they have eye-opening info that never makes it into the MSM here. One lady, fortunately a linguist, talked her way out of her group being macheted by drunk and bloodthirsty militiamen by dropping the right general’s name. A tough neighborhood.

    Second Eddie on India – the SWC does have an Indian Army officer as a member. At least one.

    “Assisting the locals” as suggested by FM is a key point for many reasons. Those examples of “colonial” powers winning against guerillas – The Phillipines and German Southwest Africa circa 1900, Indochina 1930’s – involve heavyhanded decimation in insurgent areas.

    No problema Dan !

  5. Fabius Maximus Says:

    A follow-up to Mark’s post …

    (great anecdotes, probably bad news for their tourist trade)

    The other element of the colonial powers winning against locals … they were a long time ago. Pre-Mao & pre-nukes. Perhaps 1950 is the “bright line” after which 4GW is the dominant form of war.

  6. tpraja Says:

    Have you seen the new India search engine
    http://www.ByIndia.com they added all the cool features of popular productslike MySpace,YouTube, Ebay,craigslist,etc.all for free to use and specifically for India.Anyone else try this yet? ByIndia.com First to Blend Search,Social Network,Video Sharing and Auctions Into One Seamless Product for Indian Internet Users.

Switch to our mobile site