Category Archives: 4GW

Must Read: Success in Irregular Warfare

Sam Holliday writes on the challenges posed by, and responses demanded by, the Global Jihad against the non-Muslim nations of the world (or any other Global guerrilla movement).

We have strategies for achieving victory in conventional war and strategies for achieving agreement in peace. We need strategies capable of maintaining stability through equilibrium in irregular warfare. The Department of Defense has the military and hard power of war and the Department of State has the diplomats and soft power of peace. We need career personnel — not confined by the war or peace dichotomy — dedicated to all aspects of internal security when insurgents are attempting to weaken or overthrow those in authority. […]

We need to improve our ability to develop and implement foreign policies for the current conflict. However, more than the “soft power” and increased funding of the State Department suggested by Gates is needed. The threat of the global Islamic revivalist movement (Third Jihad) has brought to our attention the fallacy of the war and peace duality. We must now think in terms of a war-irregular warfare-peace trilogy. During policy formulation we must think of three subdivisions of conflict and cooperation — each having unique means, strategies, tactics, methods and techniques. [emphasis mine] Since the rise of the nation-state the focus has been on external security, resulting in the reality of irregular warfare being slighted. Also, irregular warfare presents some unique hurdles for the United States. In the eighteenth century it was assumed that that we would exist in relative isolation, and would never want to use the military for internal security.

It is true that “we must focus our energies beyond the guns and steel of the military,” as Gates suggests; however, he fails to say what is needed: policies and strategies for stability through equilibrium. In other words, we need to create self-regulating systems that maintain internal stability through coordinated responses to any internal disruptions or input from its external environment. The goal of stability is to maintain a climate of order and satisfaction through a process of reciprocal and endless interactions that avoid the extremes of both status quo and chaos.

A Department of Stability?
Today there are two broad contending views regarding policy formulation and implementation for irregular warfare:

1. Focus the military on conventional war against the armed forces of other states and focus the Foreign Service on diplomacy and negotiations to avoid war, while muddling through irregular warfare.
2. Recognize irregular warfare as being distinctive from both war and peace by creating a new Department of Stability with career personnel dedicated to irregular warfare.

[first view deleted…]

The second view places responsibility for irregular warfare in a single department. With the Defense Department focused on war fighting and the State Department focused on diplomacy, a Stability Department could focus on (1) separation of hirabahists (evildoers using terror) from other Muslims; (2) strategic communication to increase support for our actions and weaken support for our enemies; (3) uniting the enemies of our enemies with our allies and friends into an alliance of the willing; and (4) implementing the tasks (methods and tactics) for achieving stability through equilibrium and neutralizing hirabahists. Such changes in structures and processes would be the most efficient way to develop policies regarding irregular warfare.

Very interesting. Read it all.

Trackposted to Outside the Beltway, Allie is Wired, third world county, Adam’s Blog, Right Truth, The World According to Carl, The Pink Flamingo, Celebrity Smack, Cao’s Blog, The Amboy Times, Conservative Cat, Pursuing Holiness, Right Voices, and The Yankee Sailor, thanks to Linkfest Haven Deluxe.

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Memetic Engineering in the Counterjihad

If it isn’t already happening in secret somewhere, it’s high time to put together an organized effort to combat the Jihad ideologically: A Manhattan Project of counterjihad memetic engineering. Memetic engineering promises to deliver a platform for 4GW/5GW ideological warfare against the Jihad. Al Qaeda has been operating in the ideological war nearly unopposed, with reflexive assistance from the neocommunists of the transnational progressive NGOs and leftist political parties. What will it take?

Continue reading

On Fabius Maximus’ warning concerning the Long War

Fabius Maximus asked me to respond to his Long War series. I’m responding in a hit-and-run fashion, picking out what I see as key themes in the article(s) as I read them and trying to respond in the most unaffected way in which I am capable.

Why choose war?

I sympathize with Fabius Maximus when he introduces America takes another step towards the “Long War”: Part I.

The flood of information and commentary available today can obscure events of the greatest significance. We see that today, as America takes another step towards the long war. Without thought or reflection, without debate by our elected officials, without our consent. In many ways just like the Cold War.

If the US starts a new long war, it is our war – for good or ill. Continue reading

Zenpundit Comments

Zenpundit is always worth reading at his eponymous blog or at Chicago Boyz. Both are already on my blogroll. Imagine my surprise when only a day after he surveyed the work of Fabius Maximus, esteemed Roman general, at his site he mentioned some of my recent 4GW postings.

Wolf Pangloss has a series of interesting posts on 4GW and information operations that readers might care to consider in light of the discussion that has ensued in the comments section of the post on the strategic analysis of Fabius Maximus.

The comments consist of a dispute between those who appear to use 4GW theory in a pro-Iraq-war way and those who appear to use 4GW theory in an anti-Iraq-war way. I see myself as neither. Instead, I’m one of those whose intent is to use the theoretical framework to influence those who can be influenced when they are ready (if not before). This is not restricted to the military itself, to military thinkers (Fabius Maximus‘ audience), or to the enemy and the population that supports the enemy in this war, but also to the population around us and its institutions. We in the West have (at least in public) lost touch with our moral and martial traditions, banished from the common discourse by the nihilism of multiculturalism within the academy, the courts, and media. Whether we, the sovereign people of the west, choose to go to war or not, we must clear the multicultural fog from our perceptors before we make that choice. That requires a new Hercules to clean the Augean Stables of this age.

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Media Cheerleaders for Despair

In a 4GW like the Counterjihad the world is fighting against Al Qaeda and the other Caliphate gangs, the media are the the means of attack. We cannot afford to have a media with no regard for the obligations of good citizenship. They will amplify the enemy’s message and muffle our own. And yet that is what we have. How did it get this bad?

There are no more Ernie Pyles telling the stories of American grunts from the perspective of the foxhole. Though Geraldo Rivera and other television news stars embedded with American troops in the charge to Baghdad in 2003, reporting positively on the initial blitzkrieg that seized the land with remarkably little bloodshed for a war of conquest, that changed quickly.

During the early days of the occupation the free media attempted to balance the narratives of the conflict “fairly” between the occupier and the occupied. The width of the arrows is intended to represent the amount of copy the media devote to narratives, denoted by color. Compare this to the balance on display in unfree media from Gulf states like Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Syria, and Turkey.

In the initial, quiet months the free media had been influenced by its “peers” in the unfree media of neighboring countries, and had come to believe much of the anti-American propaganda and conspiracy theorizing (about a rash of gang-rapes by American soldiers, random slaughters, white phosphorus and depleted uranium rants, the Plame affair, etc.) that fills Arabic language newspapers of the region. The balance of stories that were allowed through the media filter changed. So too did the stories that were reported multiple times, therefore magnified by media attention.

For a while, the fight had been mostly uneventful except for the looting and all-around lawless behavior from the violent criminals who were loosed from Saddam’s jails as the US invaded. Then it changed. Prompted to some degree by US bungling in the occupation, it became more dangerous, more bitter. The Baathist, Sunni supremacist, Al Qaeda, and the Sadrist and Badrist insurgencies had taken form behind the scenes and were ready to strike.

The troubles came.

Then the New York Times put a different Abu Ghraib photo on the front page every day for over a month. The free media gave up and where Iraq was concerned became an English language equivalent of the Gulf state media.

This is where we are now. The counterinsurgent is almost completely unable to get its message into its home-country media. The insurgent gets its message out easily. Because of the influence of supposed peers, even peers who have no freedom to choose stories as they fit, the quislings in the free media have taken the lead of the unfree media and debased their own product until it is indistinguishable from work produced by media who are under the thumb of despots and prevented by terror from speaking or writing freely.

Trackposted to Nuke’s, Blog @, third world county, Right Truth, The World According to Carl, The Pink Flamingo, The Amboy Times, Dumb Ox Daily News, and Right Voices, thanks to Linkfest Haven Deluxe.

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Conflict Map of the Counterjihad

The map is based on the Islamic Insurgency Conflict MapUnited States’ struggle against Jihadist terrorists in Iraq and to a somewhat lesser degree in Afghanistan. It could well apply to other Counterjihad struggles, for example Israel against Hezbollah in Lebanon, Pakistan against Al Qaeda in the Pashtun tribal belt, Turkey against the Marxist PKK, and the Philippines against the Abu Sayyaf guerrillas.

The two fields on the ends of the map are the counterinsurgent democracy on the bottom and the country in the throes of insurgency on the top. The gray represents the neutral populace in both.

The two pentagrams in the middle are the military counterinsurgency and the insurgency. They are killing each other. The counterinsurgency is much more successful at actually killing its enemy than vice versa, as reflected in the width of the arrow. The counterinsurgency also manages to kill some of the semi-legitimate insurgent leaders. But this is not where it stops.

The insurgency not only kills the personnel of the counterinsurgency, but also kills neutral leaders and civilians of its putative own side in order to supply photogenic violence for its media productions. The media productions are the tools the insurgency uses to tell its narrative. The insurgency’s narrative is represented by dark green arrows, and comes from the insurgency itself, from semi-legitimate leaders, and from covert supporters within the populace. For the purpose of this map, the narrative is directed at the democratic populace (for the political effects). However, in reality the narrative is primarily directed at all Muslims in an attempt to radicalize and mobilize them.

Finally, and now we come to the core of the processes this map is intended to represent, we come to the interactions between the Elected Government, the Opposition, the Pro-War and Anti-War Minorities, the Military, and the Populace. The center of this storm is the conflict between the Elected Government and the Opposition which desires to embarrass the Elected Government and throw it out of power, and is willing to go to great lengths to do so. For more on this section of the map, see Democracies at 4GWar.

Trackposted to Nuke’s, Perri Nelson’s Website, Blog @, third world county, Right Truth, Pirate’s Cove, The Pink Flamingo, Big Dog’s Weblog, The Amboy Times, Dumb Ox Daily News, and Right Voices, thanks to Linkfest Haven Deluxe.

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4GW Jihad and the role of the World Media

4GW Jihad as it is currently practiced is characterized most often by recording photogenic megaviolence, then propagating the recordings to media channels that primarily serve the Muslim populace, for recruiting, radicalization and morale-building purposes, and secondarily the non-Muslim populace to propagandize against its own government and military. This is not ideal for the Jihadists, as they would prefer killing infidels to fooling them or demoralizing them, but it will do until they can advance to more sophisticated and impersonal methods of killing than beheading a kuffir with a dull knife. But it is good enough for their long-term plans.

F. G. Hoffman described it well in his talk at the Boyd 2007 Conference.

Today’s 24/7 news cycles and graphic imagery produce even faster and higher response cycles from audiences around the globe and offer powerful new “weapons” to those who can master them.

Today, many small groups have mastered “armed theater” and promoted “propaganda of the deed” to arouse support and foment discord on a global scale. There is a plethora of outlets now in the Middle East and an exponentially growing number of websites and bloggers promoting a radical vision. These outlets constantly bombarded audiences with pictures, videos, DVDs, and sermons. Ironically, in Iraq and in the Long War we are facing a fundamentalist movement that is exploiting very modern and Western technologies to reestablish an anti-Western social and political system. The 4GW school, in its initial offering, identified the potential for this phenomena and the associated religious and cultural factors that might inspire it.

The Arabic news channels, jihad bloggers, and other jihad-sympathizing media outlets are capable enough of spreading the jihadist message to the base of radicalized Muslims. However, the world media, Al Jazeera, CNN, BBC, NBC, CBS, and ABC, also serve their part. They are happy to run with jihadist-supplied footage as long as the chain of custody can’t be traced back from the journalist to the jihadist. The world media, by reproducing and distributing the jihadist message all over the world, serves to magnify the jihadist narrative and lengthen the narrative’s lifespan. By doing this they help the jihadists recruit, radicalize, build morale, and raise funds.

Every process in the shown feedback loop helps the Jihadists. Their violence has a direct morale effect on themselves, the US military, and the populace. Their goal is to tyrannize the populace, and violence helps attain that goal. By making media products they combine their most persuasive sermons with photogenic megaviolence, and preserve the greatest hits so they can be heard forever. The media amplifies their message and carries it many places they couldn’t have reached otherwise. The electorate, demoralized by the 4GW Jihad’s narrative might lose faith in the military and want to draw down forces early, or it might panic and pull them back immediately. Either is a victory for the Jihadists, and almost as good for them as sudden death among the counterjihad military.

The result of the process isn’t always as spectacular as two planes destroying the tallest buildings in the US. But as its perfectly achievable goal is to increase the percentage of Muslims who are radicalized and mobilized worldwide, it is even more dangerous. With around 1.2 billion Muslims in the world, every 1% of additional radicalized and mobilized Muslims add up to another 12 million who are ready to kill and be killed for Jihad. Certainly the US cannot so easily recruit 12 million soldiers. Osama Bin Laden has a higher approval rate in Pakistan than Pervez Musharraf, at about 55%. If it is possible for Pakistan, founded 60 years ago as a secular Muslim state, to support the figurehead of Jihadist Totalitarianism and the Global Caliphate movement, then can you be sure that other “moderate” Muslim states cannot be transformed likewise in the next 60 years?

F. G. Hoffman again:

What some of the critics of 4GW have overlooked is the critical importance of the cognitive and virtual dimension of today’s conflicts. I expect several speakers to discuss this today. Now as we all know, T. E. Lawrence and the French expert Galula underscored this same issue in their seminal works. But the speed, frequency, and graphic imagery that is possible today with modern media is simply beyond their comprehension. It may still be beyond most of us. Recent scholarship by Dr. Audrey Cronin has persuasively compared the ongoing cyber-mobilization of Muslims around the world to the French Revolution and the levée en masse. This has profound implications for human conflict in this century as Dr. Cronin has perceptively warns “Western nations will persist in ignoring the fundamental changes in popular mobilization at their peril.”

As long as the “if it bleeds it leads” World Media continues to serve an unquestioning role in spreading Jihadist propaganda worldwide and refusing under the tyranny of multiculturalism to spread or even permit discussion of opposing or alternative views, the Media will assist the Jihadists in the radicalization and mobilization of Muslims, and the creation of a world-wide Muslim majority of Jihadists. Happy day for Osama bin Laden, perhaps. Not so much for the rest of us.

Trackposted to , The World According to Carl, The Populist, The Pink Flamingo, The Amboy Times, The Bullwinkle Blog, Gulf Coast Hurricane Tracker, and Adeline and Hazel, thanks to Linkfest Haven Deluxe.

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