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  • Author: Bruce Gilley
  • Publication Date: 03-2014
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: It is a commonly expressed idea that a key goal of intervention in and assistance to foreign nations is to establish (or re-establish) legitimate political authority. Historically, even so great a skeptic as John Stuart Mill allowed that intervention could be justified if it were "for the good of the people themselves" as measured by their willingness to support and defend the results. In recent times, President George W. Bush justified his post-war emphasis on democracybuilding in Iraq, Afghanistan, and elsewhere in the Middle East with the logic that "nations in the region will have greater stability because governments will have greater legitimacy." President Obama applauded French intervention in Mali for its ability "to reaffirm democracy and legitimacy and an effective government" in the country
  • Topic: Government
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Iraq, Middle East
  • Author: Gregory L. Schulte
  • Publication Date: 12-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: After a decade of war in afghanistan and Iraq, the Obama administration has adopted a new defense strategy that recognizes the need to limit our strategic ends in an era of increasing limits on our military means.1 the strategy calls for armed forces capable of conducting a broad range of missions, in a full range of contingencies, and in a global context that is increasingly complex. It calls for doing so with a smaller defense budget. Opportunities for savings come from reducing the ability to fight two regional conflicts simultaneously and from not sizing the force to conduct prolonged, large-scale stability operations. Seemingly missing from the new defense strategy are the types of wars we fought in afghanistan and Iraq. Both started with forcible changes in regime – the armed ouster of the taliban and Saddam Hussein from their positions of power. In each case, the rapid removal of leadership was followed by lengthy counterinsurgency operations to bring security to the population and build up a new government. the duration and difficulty of these operations and their cost in deaths, destruction, and debt were not understood at their outset.
  • Topic: NATO, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Iraq
  • Author: Malkanthi Hettiarachchi
  • Publication Date: 12-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: The liberation tigers of tamil ealam (ltte), sometimes referred to as the tamil tigers, or simply the tigers, was a separatist militant organization based in northern Sri lanka. It was founded in May 1976 by Prabhakaran and waged a violent secessionist and nationalist campaign to create an independent state in the north and east of Sri lanka for the tamil people. this campaign evolved into the Sri lankan Civil War.1 the tigers were considered one of the most ruthless insurgent and terrorist organisations in the world.2 they were vanquished by the Sri lankan armed forces in May 2009. 3 In order to rehabilitate the 11,6644 tigers who had surrendered or been taken captive, Sri lanka developed a multifaceted program to engage and transform the violent attitudes and behaviours of the tiger leaders, members and collaborators. 5 Since the end of the ltte's three-decade campaign of insurgency and terrorism, there has not been a single act of terrorism in the country. Many attribute Sri lanka's post-conflict stability to the success of the insurgent and terrorist rehabilitation program.
  • Topic: War, Insurgency
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iraq, Sri Lanka
  • Author: Stuart W. Bowen, JR., Craig Collier
  • Publication Date: 12-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: From 2004-2012, the Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction (SIGIR) conducted 387 inspections and audits of U.S.-funded projects and programs that supported stabilization and reconstruction operations in Iraq. Most of SIGIR's reviews focused on large-scale projects or programs. In a recent special report, SIGIR accomplished a novel study examining a particular part of the rebuilding effort. That report reviewed the remarkably diverse spectrum of programs and projects executed in a crucial geographic area in Iraq, the Rusafa Political district, delving into who built what and at what cost. The nature of this new report opens the door to deeper perspectives on what was actually achieved – and how it was achieved–by various U.S. government agencies operating during operation Iraqi Freedom (oIF). SIGIR elicited seven lessons-learned from the study, which conclude this article.
  • Topic: Government
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq
  • Author: Kirk Talbott, John Waugh, Douglas Batson
  • Publication Date: 09-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: Burma wavers on the cusp of a transition from conflict, plunder, and risk towards peace and a more open, stable society. A half-century of armed warfare, largely financed by the rapid exploitation of high-value natural resources, may be coming to an end in mainland Southeast Asia's largest nation. The use and extraction of environmental assets will continue, however, to determine Burma's political and economic future. Unfortunately, natural resources too often play a perverse role in preventing needed reforms in countries emerging from protracted conflict. In an era of fiscal constraint, "sequestration," and a decade of Iraq and Afghanistan nation-building fatigue, how can the U.S. best aid Burma's transformation? The on-the-ground situations in Burma, namely, ethnic conflicts, land grabs, internally displaced persons, each undergirded by a deep distrust of the central government, are as varied as they are fluid. U.S. foreign policy issues regarding the nation also known as Myanmar, beginning with that nation's toponym,2 are so complex as to defy the Interagency and Tactical Conflict Assessment Frameworks, respectively vaunted by U.S. government civilian agencies and military services.
  • Topic: Security, Foreign Policy, Climate Change, United Nations
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Iraq, Burma
  • Author: James Dobbins
  • Publication Date: 09-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: Last summer, in response to a directive from Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Martin Dempsey, the Joint Staff issued a short summary of lessons learned from the past decade of military operations. The document, entitled Decade of War, Volume 1 frankly and cogently acknowledges mistakes made over this period, and particularly during the first half of the decade, that is to say between the invasion of Afghanistan in late 2001 and the surge of troops into Iraq in early 2007. Among the admitted deficiencies were the failure to adequately grasp the operating environment, a reliance on conventional tactics to fight unconventional enemies, an inability to articulate a convincing public narrative, and poor interagency coordination. The document is testimony to the capacity of the American military for self-criticism and eventual correction, albeit not always in time to avoid costly setbacks.
  • Topic: War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Iraq, America
  • Publication Date: 09-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: What lessons have you personally drawn from the decade of war in Iraq and Afghanistan? Blair: The decade of war is really two decades of war–from the time the Cold War ended in about 1989 through the disappearance of the Soviet threat and the involvement of the United States in a series of individual military actions. What I've learned is that we need to do a better job thinking these conflicts all the way through before we engage in them. Because it turns out that we are relearning an old lesson, which is the use of military force is only a part of improving a situation and protecting American interests in a particular country or region. Too often, we think that a military victory itself will cause the desired result. In fact many other factors come in to play; economic development, social development, government improvement. These are not accomplished by the U.S. alone, and certainly not by American military force alone, but often with allies and other partners, and with other civilian capabilities. I think we have not thought them through carefully as to the end state that we are trying to achieve. Next we need to be realistic about the resources that are required; military, civil, and other. I'm afraid these are old lessons that need to be relearned, not new lessons, but they certainly have been borne out as some of the shortcomings of the interventions we have made in recent years. I would add, by the way, that I am not one who says our military interventions since 1989 have all been disasters. I think on the whole they have made the world a better place; bad people who were around then aren't around now, from Manuel Noriega to Saddam Hussein through Slobodan Milosevic and others; so it is not that our military interventions have been wasted. On the contrary–but we need to make sure that we get the maximum possible benefit from them and intervene in a smart way.
  • Topic: Cold War, Government
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq
  • Author: Jeff Rice
  • Publication Date: 09-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: Fred Kaplan's The Insurgents is a highly successful and compelling intermingling of three stories: the rise and eventual fall of General David Petraeus; the intellectual history of counterinsurgency; and the broadening of the learning culture within the United States Military during the Iraq war. Indeed, the heroes of the book are the “insurgents” within the U.S. Army who all but overthrew the dominant paradigm of kinetic warfare in favor of ideas derived from England and France during the end of the colonial era.1 Kaplan's book picks up on the story told by Tom Ricks in The Gamble2 about how this intellectual insurgency transformed the way the U.S. fought the war in Iraq, preferring the counterinsurgency (COIN) approach to protecting civilians from insurgents and lowering their casualty rate, and building alliances in order to reduce the number of insurgents. For Kaplan this is nothing short of a profound alteration of the American way of war, one that caused enormous consternation amongst certain sectors of the military who were wedded to a more conventional approach to war.
  • Topic: Government, War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Iraq, America
  • Author: Stuart Bowen
  • Publication Date: 03-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: There now exists a “golden hour” for repairing the U.S. approach to stabilization and reconstruction operations (SROs). The past 8 years of rebuilding efforts in Iraq, fraught as they were with painful and expensive challenges, yielded numerous hard lessons that provide a clear basis for comprehensive systemic reform.
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq
  • Author: Vijaya Ramachandran, Gregory Johnson, Julie Walz
  • Publication Date: 03-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: Carl Schramm, president and chief executive officer of the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, published a paper in Foreign Affairs in 2010 entitled “Expeditionary Economics,” arguing that the economies of Iraq and Afghanistan have shown few signs of progress. Schramm makes the case for the military to engage broadly in midconflict and postconflict reconstruction using a variety of tools. Economic reconstruction must be a part of a three-legged strategy, following invasion and stabilization. To do reconstruction, the military needs to expand its areas of competence, rid itself of its central planning mentality, and become a more flexible force that can facilitate economic growth while trying to stabilize the regions in which it is engaged.
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Iraq
  • Author: Andrea Barbara Baumann
  • Publication Date: 06-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: American-led interventions in Iraq and Afghanistan are drawing to an end and the political climate inside the Beltway has turned decidedly hostile toward large deployments of U.S. troops and civilians overseas. Consequently, stability operations have dropped off the radar for many analysts and commentators. The policy community that once feverishly tackled questions over how to stabilize foreign countries through the extended deployment of military and civilian capabilities under various labels (most prominently state- or nation-building and/or population- centric counterinsurgency) is shifting its gaze elsewhere. With growing hindsight, the entire endeavor is often declared as flawed from the start. In addition to this sense of strategic failure, a drop in political attention now heightens the risk of losing hard-earned insights from these operations. This is therefore a crucial time to evaluate the institutional developments that operations in Iraq and Afghanistan have spurred.
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq, America
  • Author: Michael T. Flynn, James Sisco, David C. Ellis
  • Publication Date: 09-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: Hard lessons learned during counterinsurgency operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, counterterrorist operations across continents, and the Arab Spring all contributed to a growing recognition within the Intelligence Community (IC)1 of the importance of understanding the “human terrain” of operating environments. The Department of Defense (DOD), its Service branches and combatant commands, and the broader IC responded to the demand for sociocultural analysis (SCA) by creating organizations such as the Defense Intelligence Socio-Cultural Capabilities Council, Human Terrain System, and U.S. Central Command's Human Terrain Analysis Branch, among others. For large bureaucracies, DOD and the IC reacted agilely to the requirement, but the robust SCA capabilities generated across the government over the last decade were largely operationally and tactically organized, resourced, and focused. What remains is for the IC to formulate a strategic understanding of SCA and establish a paradigm for incorporating it into the intelligence process.
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq
  • Author: Ben Fitzgerald, Pia Wanek
  • Publication Date: 09-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: Almost every aspect of national security is colored by uncertainty. While it would be arrogant to consider that this moment in history carries more uncertainty than others, we presently find ourselves facing a multiplicity of uncertainties that pull us simultaneously in different directions. Drawdown in Iraq and Afghanistan, along with the future implications of those conflicts, the ongoing events of the Arab Spring, the rise and increased assertiveness of near-peer competitors, a variety of nonstate actors with increasingly sophisticated capability, and economic crises in Europe create additional contingencies that require our attention. Simultaneously, economic uncertainty at home limits our means, requiring prioritization and the acceptance of additional risk.
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Iraq, Europe
  • Author: Pierre Bélanger, Alexander Scott Arroyo
  • Publication Date: 09-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: For the Department of Defense (DOD), the most important difference between Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) in Iraq and Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) in Afghanistan is neither cultural nor political, but logistical. Admiral Mike Mullen, former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, summed up the difference with terse precision: “We don't have a Kuwait.” Lacking a secure staging ground adjacent to the theater of operations exponentially complicates getting materiel to and from forward operating bases (FOBs) and combat outposts (COPs), in turn requiring a longer and more complex logistical supply chain. Landlocked among non– International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) states, unstable allies (Pakistan and China to the east, Kyrgystan and Uzbekistan to the north), and regional “rogue states” (Iran), Afghanistan is, for logistical operations, a desert island.
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, China, Iraq, Iran, Kuwait, Uzbekistan, Island
  • Author: Riley M. Moore
  • Publication Date: 09-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: With the outbreak of insurgency in Iraq (followed by Afghanistan), an urgent requirement emerged for concise and easily comprehensible answers to the complex question of how to counter an insurgency. In the midst of two wars, with no time or current doctrine and with a Presidential mandate for solutions, strategic thinkers and generals were desperately searching for a foothold to halt what seemed to be the inevitable descent into chaos in Iraq. t he works of David Galula played a significant role in fulfilling that mandate. Touted by General David Petraeus and other military leaders—General Stanley McChrystal, for instance, claimed to keep Galula's publications on his nightstand to read every night— Galula's work has been influential in forming current U.S. counterinsurgency (COIN) doctrine. Indeed, his influence on Field Manual 3-24, Counterinsurgency, which was authored under the leadership of General Petraeus, is undeniable.
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq, Algeria
  • Author: Hans-Jürgen Kasselmann
  • Publication Date: 12-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: Discussions about the most effective, efficient, and sustainable approach to resolving complex crisis situations have a long historical tradition, even if ongoing debates among politicians and researchers may suggest otherwise. the discussions about developments in Iraq, Sudan, Somalia, and Afghanistan, as well as evaluations of the disasters in Haiti and Pakistan, call for all participants to find new solutions in response to obvious deficits and the looming prospect of failure. This holds especially true with regard to the question of when, where, and how the military instrument should be integrated with the activities of all the other actors involved in the resolution of complex crisis situations based on an overall political rationale.
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iraq, Sudan, Haiti, Somalia
  • Author: Christian Bayer Tygesen
  • Publication Date: 12-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: In-conflict state-building in fragile states (such as Iraq and Afghanistan), defined as building effective and legitimate civilian and military state institutions to advance the stabilization and democratization of the state, creates unbalanced civil-military relations in the host state by producing weak and dysfunctional civilian institutions vis-à-vis relatively stronger and more functional military institutions. This imbalance positions the military to become a dominant political actor in state formation upon the withdrawal of the international military presence. This can have significant implications for the political trajectory of the state.
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Iraq
  • Author: Frank J. Cilluffo, Joseph R. Clark
  • Publication Date: 12-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: As the United States resets in the wake of Iraq and Afghanistan, and in the face of growing uncertainty in the South China Sea, a good and important debate is occurring about how best to provide for our national security. Reasonable arguments can be made about the threats posed by potential peer competitors such as China, rogue nations such as North Korea, and prospective revisionist powers such as Russia. Arguments can be made about threats arising from political instability or intrastate conflicts, such as in Pakistan, Uganda, and Syria. Arguments can also be made about the threats posed by jihadi terror groups, organized crime syndicates, and drug trafficking organizations. The dangers highlighted by any one of these arguments are real and perhaps grave. They are not, however, novel.
  • Political Geography: Uganda, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Russia, United States, China, Iraq, North Korea, Syria
  • Author: Stuart W. Bowen, JR., Craig Colier
  • Publication Date: 12-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: The Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction (SIGIR) has accomplished a number of audits and inspections over the past 8 years that focused on the Commander's emergency Response Program (CERP). to complement those previous oversight efforts, SIGIR recently conceived and produced a special report entitled “Reconstruction Leaders' Perceptions of the Commander's emergency Response Program in Iraq.” this report was based on a SIGIR-developed and -administered survey of unit leaders in Iraq who had first-hand experience using CERP. The survey provided a plethora of new and revelatory data, allowing deeper insights into the effects of CERP use in Iraq.
  • Political Geography: Iraq
  • Author: Stuart W. Bowen, JR., Craig Colier
  • Publication Date: 12-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: The Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction (SIGIR) recently released a special report entitled “The Human toll of Reconstruction or Stabilization Operations during Operation Iraqi Freedom.” through this review, SIGIR sought to determine how many people—U.S. Servicemembers and civilians, third-country nationals, and Iraqis—were killed while participating in activities related to the rebuilding of Iraq's infrastructure and institutions.
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq
  • Author: Rebecca Patterson, Jonathan Robinson
  • Publication Date: 03-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: Postinvasion Iraq and Afghanistan have compelled the United States to expand its focus on and capacity for conflict resolution and postwar reconstruction. Our strategic objective in both countries has become the transformation of dysfunctional and war-affected societies into stable, viable, and sustainable states. To this end, economic development and security are regarded as mutually reinforcing elements: without security, development cannot progress far, yet development is essential to attaining security. With civilian aid agencies impaired by prohibitive security conditions and burdensome bureaucratic requirements, the Department of Defense (DOD) has, for the first time in 60 years, become a dominant player in creating the conditions for economic growth in conflict areas
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq
  • Author: Norton A. Schwartz
  • Publication Date: 03-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: In 2001, the U.S. military, aided by indigenous forces, swiftly toppled a Taliban government responsible for providing sanctuary to al Qaeda. In 2003, the Iraqi military disintegrated in the face of a devastating demonstration of American power that ended the regime of Saddam Hussein. America showcased its unique ability to project power over vast distances to achieve substantial results. Unfortunately, those initial victories were short-lived. As the security situations deteriorated in both Iraq and Afghanistan, the United States became engaged in longer term irregular conflicts. American and allied militaries struggled to adapt their doctrine, training, and technology to counter an elusive foe. While ground forces relearned and incorporated counterinsurgency (COIN) lessons, Airmen explored how airpower's flexibility, responsiveness, and bird's-eye view of the battlefield could respond to those lessons.
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq, America, Taliban
  • Author: Robert Killebrew
  • Publication Date: 06-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: Even before the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, the global context for American security policy was changing. While the traditional state-based international system continued to function and the United States reacted to challenges by states in conventional ways (for example, by invading Afghanistan and Iraq after 9/11), a cascade of enormous technological and social change was revolutionizing international affairs. As early as the 1990s, theorists were writing that with modern transnational communications, international organizations and corporate conglomerates would increasingly act independently of national borders and international regulation. What was not generally foreseen until about the time of 9/11, though, was the darker side: that the same technology could empower corrupt transnational organizations to threaten the international order itself. In fact, the globalization of crime, from piracy's financial backers in London and Nairobi to the Taliban and Hizballah's representatives in West Africa, may well be the most important emerging fact of today's global security environment.
  • Topic: International Affairs
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq
  • Author: Franklin Kramer
  • Publication Date: 06-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: Irregular conflict is neither neat nor fair. Definitionally, it is hard to describe, including as it does conflicts ranging from Somalia to Bosnia to Sierra Leone to Colombia to Iraq to Afghanistan (to say nothing of Sudan, the Philippines, or Yemen). Hybrid, counterinsurgency (COIN), stability operations, counterterrorism, and civil war have all been utilized as descriptions, often in combination. But if defining irregular conflict is difficult, even more difficult is knowing how to respond, especially for an outside intervener like the United States. Doctrine has now been developed, but in practice the context of an irregular conflict is generally so complex and contradictory that it is difficult to put the full doctrine effectively into practice.
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq, Sudan, Bosnia, Philippines, Yemen, Colombia, Sierra Leone, Somalia
  • Author: Thomas Pickering
  • Publication Date: 12-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: Under the George W. Bush administration, negotiations were not included in the strategic mix of dealing with Afghanistan or, for that matter, Iraq. One can only conjecture about reasons. They may have included a sense that a military victory was possible; a belief that talk about negotiations was in itself a sign of weakness that should not—and could not—be conveyed to the opponent; full-blown distrust of the Taliban; a need to have a better balance of forces and more success behind us before we took on the task; a hope that a reintegration process, together with raising the military stakes, would be sufficient to win the day; and a distrust of diplomats and politicians who might be expected to conduct the negotiations—a sense that all achieved with the expenditure of so much blood and treasure would be given away if diplomats and politicians were turned loose on the problem.
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iraq, Taliban
  • Author: Brian M. Burton
  • Publication Date: 12-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: Since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, the United States has pursued a wide range of military activities abroad intended to degrade, dismantle, and defeat the al Qaeda organization and its network of loosely affiliated Islamist extremist groups. A disproportionate number of these efforts—in terms of manpower, materiel, money, and media attention—focus on two countries: Afghanistan and Iraq. In both instances, the United States toppled existing hostile regimes and is attempting to rebuild institutions of security and governance from the ground up. However, these intensive and expensive efforts at state-building are not necessarily the most important from the standpoint of understanding the future direction of U.S. strategy against violent Islamist extremist groups. Instead, U.S. strategy against transnational terrorist groups abroad is increasingly focused on a concept commonly referred to as the indirect approach.
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq
  • Author: Kenneth F. McKenzie Jr., Elizabeth C. Packard
  • Publication Date: 12-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: During the past decade, the most visible military activities in the U.S. Central Command (USCENTCOM) area of responsibility (AOR) have been decidedly kinetic, showcased primarily through operations in Afghanistan and Iraq. This year marks important transitions in both of these campaigns as Afghan National Security Forces begin to take the lead on security operations and the United States shifts to a more traditional security relationship with Baghdad. Building partner capacity in Afghan and Iraqi forces—one of USCENTCOM's key nonkinetic activities—is a central component to success in both of these missions.
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq, Arabia
  • Author: Bradford Baylor, Jeanne Burrington, Bradford Davis, Russell Goehring
  • Publication Date: 12-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: Low per capita income is linked to economic instability and state insecurity in postconflict societies. While domestic state capacity is the long-term goal, low-income societies emerging from conflict do not have the luxury to wait. Thus, given the current limitations of state performance, the immediate security solutions for low per capita income countries need to focus on host-government reform policies and alternatives for delivering basic services, rather than long-term state capacity-building. Even with low government capacity, certain economic policies can be put in place to improve per capita income and stimulate employment creation and other public goods. Establishing incentives for practical local economic reform policies, creating an environment that supports private economic investment, and enhancing the delivery of basic social services by the host government contribute to security and stability as they also ultimately contribute to building state capacity.
  • Topic: Reform
  • Political Geography: Iraq
  • Author: James N. Soligan
  • Publication Date: 06-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: Ongoing engagements in Afghanistan and Iraq have resurrected one of the most important and challenging questions facing political and military leaders in the United States and other nations: how to set objectives, conduct operations, and terminate wars in a manner that achieves intended political outcomes. The collective track record leaves much to be desired, and results of even the most recent conflicts would argue that we have not yet learned the necessary lessons from wars in the 20 th century to prevent making many of the same mistakes and suffering similar consequences in the 21 st century.
  • Topic: War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq
  • Author: Ronald Neumann
  • Publication Date: 03-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: Security is only 20 percent of the solution; 80 percent is governance and development." "There is no military solution to insurgency." These and similar statements have rightly refocused counterinsurgency doctrine and popular thinking away from purely military solutions to the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. Yet these catchphrases have become substitutes for deeper consideration of the role of security in the current conflicts and in insurgency in general, hiding some important points and leading to assumptions that are an insufficient basis for policy.
  • Topic: Development, Counterinsurgency
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Iraq
  • Author: Robert Hoekstra, Charles Tucker Jr.
  • Publication Date: 03-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: Drawing on the lessons learned from coalition interventions in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Afghanistan, Iraq, and elsewhere, by mid-2004, a consensus developed within the executive branch, Congress, and among independent experts that the U.S. Government required a more robust capacity to prevent conflict (when possible) and (when necessary) to manage “Stabilization and Reconstruction Operations [SROs] in countries emerging from conflict or civil strife.”
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Government
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq, Bosnia, Herzegovina, Kosovo
  • Author: Edward Burke
  • Publication Date: 03-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: The militarization of aid in conflict zones is now a reality and is likely to increase exponentially in the future. Stability operations are critical to the success of any viable counterinsurgency strategy. Yet in much of Afghanistan and Iraq, civilian officials working alone have proven incapable of successfully distributing and monitoring stabilization funds or implementing associated operations; thus, they have required close cooperation with the military. Many North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) countries have not adequately addressed deficiencies in models of civil-military cooperation, with severe repercussions for the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) mission in Afghanistan. Meanwhile, nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and some government development agencies complain that the delivery of aid by the military can exacerbate the targeting of civilian aid workers. Highlighting the failure of civilian agencies to cooperate effectively with the military may provide temporary vindication to skeptics within the NGO community, but such criticism does not solve the critical dilemma of how to deliver reconstruction and humanitarian assistance to the most violent parts of Afghanistan and Iraq or other nonpermissive environments.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Security, NATO
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Iraq
  • Author: Phil Williams
  • Publication Date: 03-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: After the invasion of Iraq in March 2003, the United States encountered a series of strategic surprises, including the hostility to the occupation, the fragility of Iraq's infrastructure, and the fractious nature of Iraqi politics. One of the least spectacular but most significant of these surprises was the rise of organized crime and its emergence as a postconflict spoiler. This development was simply not anticipated. Organized crime in Iraq in the months and years after March 2003 emerged as a major destabilizing influence, increasing the sense of lawlessness and public insecurity, undermining the efforts to regenerate the economy, and financing the violent opposition to the occupation forces. In 2003, the theft of copper from downed electric pylons made the restoration of power to the national grid much more difficult. In 2008, the capacity to generate funds through criminal activities enabled al Qaeda in Iraq (AQI) to continue resisting both the U.S. military and the Iraqi government. Moreover, with the planned U.S. withdrawal from Iraq, organized crime in the country will continue to flourish by maintaining well established crime-corruption networks. It might also expand by exploiting the continued weakness of the Iraqi state.
  • Topic: Economics, Government, Politics
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq
  • Author: Bernard Carreau, Melanne Civic
  • Publication Date: 03-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: In addition to the problems of building and maintaining an effective civilian presence in Afghanistan and Iraq is the matter of developing institutional knowledge in the civilian agencies—what works and what does not work in the field. The task is all the more daunting because civilian agencies do not have a core mission to maintain expertise in stabilizing war-torn countries, particularly those experiencing major counterinsurgency and counterterrorist operations. Yet the Department of State, U.S. Agency for International Development, Departments of Agriculture, Justice, Commerce, Treasury, Homeland Security, Health and Human Services, Transportation, Energy, and other agencies have been sending personnel to Afghanistan, Iraq, and other fragile states for several years now. The agencies have relied on a combination of direct hires, temporary hires, and contractors, but nearly all of them have been plagued by relatively short tours and rapid turnarounds, making it difficult to establish enduring relationships on the ground and institutional knowledge in the agencies. The constant coming and going of personnel has led to the refrain heard more and more frequently that the United States has not been fighting the war in Afghanistan for 8 years, but rather for just 1 year, eight times in a row.
  • Topic: Development, Counterinsurgency
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq
  • Author: Bernard Carreau
  • Publication Date: 06-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: In July 2009, the Center for Complex Operations (CCO) facilitated a workshop sponsored by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to capture the experiences of USDA agricultural advisors deployed to ministries and Provincial Reconstruction Teams (PRTs) in Iraq and Afghanistan. The discussions yielded numerous individual observations, insights, and potential lessons from the work of these advisors on PRTs in these countries. This article presents a broad overview of the challenges identified by the conference participants and highlights key recommendations generated as a result of suggestions and comments made at the workshop.
  • Topic: Agriculture
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iraq
  • Author: Matthew W. Parin
  • Publication Date: 09-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: Against the backdrop of wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and a changing strategic environment in the broader Middle East, political leaders now are confronting the difficult question of how to achieve long-term stability. The toppling of the Taliban-led government in Afghanistan and removal of Saddam Hussein from Iraq displayed the capability of America's military to marshal overwhelming conventional force against its enemies. However, this overwhelming capability soon was eclipsed when this same force struggled to secure durable peace either in Iraq or Afghanistan.
  • Topic: War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Iraq, America, Middle East, Taliban
  • Author: Blake Stone
  • Publication Date: 09-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: Provincial Reconstruction Teams (PRTs) and their much smaller and operationally leaner dependencies, embedded PRTs (ePRTs), have made meaningful and lasting contributions to U.S. postconflict reconstruction and stabilization efforts in Iraq since their inception in November 2005. This article presents the observations and experiences of one person on a single ePRT operating in the same expanse of Southern Baghdad Province over a period of 18 months from the tail end of the "Baghdad Surge" in late 2008 through the Council of Representatives election and transfer of power in March 2010. Toward that end, what follows is mostly anecdotal and does not necessarily reflect what surely were different experiences and operational realities on other PRTs and ePRTs in other parts of Iraq.
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq
  • Author: Sterling Jensen, Najim Abed Al-Jabouri
  • Publication Date: 12-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: After the coalition forces invaded Iraq in 2003, Sunnis revolted against the idea of de-Sunnifying Iraq. Partnering with the United States in 2006 was mainly an attempt to recoup Sunni losses once the United States had seemingly changed its position in their regard. This happened as the Sunni community increasingly saw al Qaeda and Iran as bigger threats than the U.S. occupation. The Sunni Awakening had two main parts: the Anbar Awakening and the Awakening councils, or the Sons of Iraq program. The Anbar Awakening was an Iraqi grassroots initiative supported by the United States and paid for by the Iraqi government. The Sons of Iraq program was a U.S.-led and -funded initiative to spread the success of the Anbar Awakening into other Sunni areas, particularly heterogeneous areas, and was not fully supported by the Iraqi government. If not for al Qaeda's murder and intimidation campaign on Sunnis, and its tactic of creating a sectarian war, the Anbar Awakening-a fundamental factor in the success of the 2007 surge-most probably would not have occurred, and it would have been difficult for the United States in 2006 to convince Sunnis to partner with them in a fight against al Qaeda.
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq
  • Author: Corri Zoli, Nicholas J. Armstrong
  • Publication Date: 12-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: It was only a matter of time before the elevated language of post-9/11 security discourse, and the phrase the global war on terrorism itself, was bound to reap both practical applications and studied reversals. Without the lessons of Iraq and Afghanistan and each country's challenging reconstruction projects, one might expect idealist solutions to this historical juncture. Only 8 short years ago, the 2002 National Security Strategy of the United States (NSS 2002) offered just that, the virtues of pressing for freedom and democracy against a new breed of post-Cold War threats. In now memorable language, the policy document linked "the great struggles" of the 20th century "between liberty and totalitarianism" to a "single sustainable model for national success: freedom, democracy, and free enterprise." Displaying the "black and white" worldview of unchallenged power, NSS 2002 grouped 21st-century nations together that "share a commitment to protecting basic human rights and guaranteeing political and economic freedom," arguing that these values would "assure their future prosperity." Such values, it noted, are "right and true for every person" in "every society," and, in turn, "the duty of protecting" them "against their enemies" is the "common calling of freedom-loving people across the globe and across the ages"-a role spearheaded by the United States insofar as it enjoyed "unparalleled military strength and great economic and political influence."
  • Topic: Economics
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Iraq
  • Publication Date: 03-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: How would you characterize the threat to Iraq today? Does the potential for renewed violence or political divisions pose the greatest threat to Iraq succeeding as a viable state? With our Iraqi and coalition partners, we have made good progress in stabilizing Iraq's security situation, specifically over the last 3 years. Today, security incidents are down to levels last seen in 2003—and we continue to see slow progress toward normalcy across Iraq. From a purely security perspective, there are three primary threats from groups still seeking to destabilize Iraq, the most dangerous being al Qaeda in Iraq [AQI]. While AQI started as a broad-based insurgency capable of sustaining significant operations across Iraq, our consistent pressure has degraded AQI, and they have had to morph into a covert terrorist organization capable of conducting isolated high-profile attacks. The Iraqi people have rejected al Qaeda, and the organization is no longer able to control territory. However, AQI remains focused on delegitimizing the government of Iraq, disrupting the national election process and subsequent government formation, and ultimately causing the Iraqi state to collapse. AQI remains a strategic threat. In addition to AQI, there remain Sunni Ba'athist insurgents whose ultimate goal is regime change and a reinstitution of a Ba'athist regime. Shia extremists and Iranian surrogates also continue their lethal and nonlethal efforts to influence the development of the Iraqi state.
  • Topic: Insurgency
  • Political Geography: Iraq
  • Author: Stuart Bowen, Jr.
  • Publication Date: 03-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: A cursory glance at the foreign policy section in your local bookstore would reveal many volumes of output and analyses generated over the past few years by the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq and its after-math. Selections vary from wide-ranging strategic reviews to gripping accounts of the house-to-house fighting that occurred in places like Fallujah and Sadr City. However, until 2009, no one had produced a comprehensive analytical study of the Coalition Provisional Authority's (CPA's) occupation of Iraq, when it operated as the country's de jure and de facto government from early May 2003 to the end of June 2004. Ambassador James Dobbins, the leading authority on overseas contingencies, and his coauthors have filled this reportorial gap with this landmark work, which will stand as an authoritative history of the CPA for years to come.
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq
  • Author: Scott W. Lyons
  • Publication Date: 09-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: With the failure of the U.S. military and Coalition Provisional Authority to stabilize Iraq after the successful 2003 invasion, military analysts have noted that a lesson learned is a need for better coordination between the civilian and military powers. This book by Robert Egnell explains how civil-military integration improves both military effectiveness and operational success.
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq
  • Publication Date: 12-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: Certain things are better. For example, our intelligence systems are much more advanced. Tactically, our people have adapted well to different situations, first in Iraq, and then in Afghanistan. But in terms of protecting national security, we're really talking about national strategy. And if you look at where we are in terms of our national strategy-that involves economic policy, over - all strategic forces, and how you connect and communicate to the rest of the world-here we have a lot of issues to address.
  • Topic: Intelligence
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Iraq
  • Publication Date: 12-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: PRISM
  • Institution: National Defense University Press
  • Abstract: After almost a decade of war, our Soldiers and leaders continue to perform magnificently in the harshest conditions and within the incredibly complex operating environments of Iraq and Afghanistan. They operate as part of increasingly decentralized organizations, and their tasks are made even more challenging by the unprecedented degree of transparency and near-instantaneous transmission of information. These trends are not an aberration. The future operating environment promises to grow even more complex. Because of that, we believe it is important to reflect on what it means to be a part of a profession. We are asking ourselves how 9 years of war and an era of persistent transparency have affected our understanding of what it means to be a professional Soldier.
  • Topic: War
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Iraq