Afghanistan


Art of War Papers: Closing the Security Gap

Art of War Papers: Closing the Security Gap

By Michael J. Gunther, MAJ, US Army

144 Pages

Published: 2012

The British and US experience with the use of local, irregular security forces suggest their importance in assisting the host nation government and counterinsurgent forces. Their successful establishment, training, and employment demonstrate the importance of several prerequisites including partnership with an advisory force, consent of the host nation’s government to exist, and that the security force is accountable to the local civil authority. Without these prerequisites, the local, irregular security force could risk

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Art of War Papers: Operations at the Border

Art of War Papers: Operations at the Border

By Eric Hunter Haas, MAJ, US Army

134 Pages

Published: 2012

Disrupting an insurgent’s access to sanctuary and safe-haven is a critical aspect of operational planning for counterinsurgent forces. By denying an insurgent’s access to safe-havens early in the conflict, the counterinsurgent will gain a marked advantage over the initially weaker force. Only through a deep understanding of how the insurgent is using international, tribal, or cultural borders to evade the counterinsurgent force can the counterinsurgent disrupt the insurgent operations.

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Art of War Papers: Stabilizing the Debate between Population and Enemy-Centric Counterinsurgency Success Demands a Balanced Approach

Art of War Papers: Stabilizing the Debate between Population and Enemy-Centric Counterinsurgency Success Demands a Balanced Approach

By Nathan Ray Springer, MAJ, US Army

150 Pages

Published: 2012

This thesis contends the debate on whether to embrace a population-centric or enemy-centric counterinsurgency strategy in Afghanistan detracts focus from building a balanced approach, customized for the human and political landscape in each area of operation (AO). The debate should be finally resolved since each strategic axis represents a crucial portion of the ideal hybrid approach, which necessarily looks different from one AO to the next. Each extreme, whether focusing all effort on killing and capturing the enemy (enemy-centric) or partnering with and protecting the population from the enemy (population-centric) is unique to local conditions on the ground. “Centric” means to focus efforts only in one direction or the other.

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A Different Kind of War: The US Army in Operation Enduring Freedom, October 2001 – September 2005

A Different Kind of War: The US Army in Operation Enduring Freedom, October 2001 – September 2005

By Donald P. Wright

418 Pages

Published: 2010

This volume, A Different Kind of War, is the first comprehensive study of the US Army’s experience in Afghanistan during the first 4 years of Operation ENDURING FREEDOM (OEF). The work focuses on Army operations in the larger Joint and Coalition campaign that evolved between October 2001 and September 2005. Beginning with a description of the successful offensive against the Taliban regime, launched in late 2001 in response to the attacks of 9/11, the book then shifts to the less well-understood campaign that began in 2002 to establish a peaceful and politically stable Afghanistan.

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Eyewitness to War Volume III: US Army Advisors in Afghanistan

Eyewitness to War Volume III: US Army Advisors in Afghanistan

By Michael G. Brooks (ed.)

440 Pages

Published: 2009

In this third volume of the Eyewitness to War series, the narratives of US Army Advisors in Afghanistan are unvarnished, first-person accounts of Coalition personnel deployed in support of OEF. Those accounts, because of the immediacy of their production, some of them just months after their return from their missions, will be of incalculable value and service to historians, researchers, media and future generations of Soldiers and civilians to come. The accounts have been only lightly edited for clarity to remove the occasional use of excessive profanity and the rare injurious personal attack.

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Leavenworth Papers No. 20 Russian-Soviet Unconventional Wars in the Caucasus, Central Asia, and Afghanistan

Leavenworth Papers No. 20 Russian-Soviet Unconventional Wars in the Caucasus, Central Asia, and Afghanistan

By Robert F. Baumann

231 Pages

Published: 1993

Primarily employing Russian sources, including important archival documents only recently declassified and made available to Western scholars, Dr. Baumann provides an insightful look at the Russian conquest of the Caucasian mountaineers (1B01-59), the subjugation of Central Asia ( 1839-81 ), the reconquest of Central Asia by the Red Army ( 1918-33), and the Soviet war in Afghanistan ( 1979--89). The history of these wars-especially as it relates to the battle tactics, force structure, and strategy employed in them-offers important new perspectives on elements of continuity and change in combat over two centuries. This is the first study to provide an in-depth examination of the evolution of the Russian and Soviet unconventional experience on the predominantly Muslim southern periphery of the former empire.

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Occasional Paper 3: Understanding the “Victory Disease,” From the Little Bighorn to Mogadishu and Beyond

Occasional Paper 3: Understanding the “Victory Disease,” From the Little Bighorn to Mogadishu and Beyond

By MAJ Timothy Karcher

64 Pages

Published: 2004

As a result of America’s national strength and its demonstrated military prowess, US forces are quite susceptible to falling prey to the effects of the “victory disease.” The disease, by definition, brings defeat to a previously victorious nation or military due to three basic symptoms: arrogance, complacency, and the habit of using established patterns to solve military problems.

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Occasional Paper 12: Public War, Private Fight? The United States and Private Military Companies

Occasional Paper 12: Public War, Private Fight? The United States and Private Military Companies

By Deborah C. Kidwell

82 Pages

Published: 2005

Former Army Chief of Staff J. Lawton Collins was inducted into the Fort Leavenworth Memorial Hall of Fame on 17 May 1983. The Hall of Fame was established to honor American soldiers who have contributed significantly to the defense of the United States. General Collins, recognized as the "best" corps commander during World War II, was elected by a panel of distinguished historians.

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Occasional Paper 33: An Ever Present Danger

Occasional Paper 33: An Ever Present Danger

By Matt M. Matthews

86 Pages

Published: 2010

Recent Pakistani military operations against the Taliban have once again thrust the historically volatile region of Pakistan’s North-West Frontier into the international limelight. According to a number of Pakistani military officers, the current fighting bears a striking resemblance to operations conducted by the British in the North-West Frontier during its long and bloody history of conflict with the frontier Pashtun (“Pathan” as the British dubbed them) tribes.

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Occasional Paper 36: We Have Not Learned How to Wage War There

Occasional Paper 36: We Have Not Learned How to Wage War There

By Matt M. Matthews

86 Pages

Published: 2011

The Soviets experienced innumerable tribulations during their decade long struggle in Afghanistan, and while they almost certainly never truly grasped the complexities of the situation, they did achieve a few striking successes. They managed to leave behind an Afghan government and army capable of withstanding the Soviet withdrawal. As historian Lester W. Grau recently noted, “The withdrawal was based on a coordinated diplomatic, economic and military plan permitting Soviet forces to withdraw in good order and the Afghan government to survive.”

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SAMS Monograph Series: Stability Economics - The Economic Foundations of Security in Post-conflict Environments

SAMS Monograph Series: Stability Economics - The Economic Foundations of Security in Post-conflict Environments

By Nathan W. Toronto and Dan G. Cox (Gen. Ed.)

266 Pages

Published: 2012

In the years after invading Iraq and Afghanistan, the US military realized that it had a problem: How does a military force set the economic conditions for security success? This problem was certainly not novel—the military had confronted it before in such diverse locations as Grenada, Haiti, Bosnia, and Kosovo. The scale and complexity of the problem, however, were unlike anything military planners had confronted beforehand. This was especially the case in Iraq, where some commentators expected oil production to drive reconstruction.

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Strykers in Afghanistan: 1st Battalion, 17th Infantry Regiment in Kandahar Province 2009

Strykers in Afghanistan: 1st Battalion, 17th Infantry Regiment in Kandahar Province 2009

By Kevin M. Hymel

104 Pages

Published: 2014

The US Army’s first deployment of a Stryker Brigade Combat Team to Afghanistan in 2009 created expectations similar to those common in 2004, when four Stryker-equipped battalions replaced four brigades from the 101st Airborne Division in northern Iraq. In 2009, soldiers and leaders at all levels expected Stryker-equipped formations to replicate their successes in Iraq, where they had “forged a reputation...for moving fast and attacking enemy strongholds all over” that country.

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Through the Lens of Cultural Awareness

Through the Lens of Cultural Awareness

By William D. Wunderle

152 Pages

Published: 2006

Conducting the Global War on Terrorism (GWOT) and projecting United States (US) influence worldwide has meant an increasing number of US diplomats and military forces are assigned to locations around the world, some of which have not previously had a significant US presence. In the current security environment, understanding foreign cultures and societies has become a national priority. Cultural understanding is necessary both to defeat adversaries and to work successfully with allies.

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Vanguard of Valor: Small Unit Actions in Afghanistan

Vanguard of Valor: Small Unit Actions in Afghanistan

General Editor Donald P. Wright, PhD

222 Pages

Published: 2011

Since 2001, the US Army in Afghanistan has been conducting complex operations in a difficult, often dangerous environment. Living in isolated outposts and working under austere conditions, US Soldiers have carried out missions that require in equal parts a warrior’s courage and a diplomat’s restraint. In the larger discussions of the Afghanistan campaign, the experiences of these Soldiers—especially the young sergeants and lieutenants that lead small units—often go undocumented.

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Vanguard of Valor: Small Unit Actions in Afghanistan Volume II

Vanguard of Valor: Small Unit Actions in Afghanistan Volume II

General Editor Donald P. Wright, PhD

168 Pages

Published: 2012

Beginning in 2009, the United States and many of its NATO-ISAF partners dramatically raised their levels of effort in Afghanistan. The “Afghan Surge,” as it came to be known, was most evident in the number of additional US and allied troops that arrived in Afghanistan in 2009 and 2010. Their mission was clear: To reverse the Taliban’s momentum and deny it the ability to overthrow the government, and to strengthen the capacity of Afghanistan’s security forces and government so that they could assume lead responsibility for their nation’s future

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Wanat: Combat Action in Afghanistan, 2008

Wanat: Combat Action in Afghanistan, 2008

By Staff of the US Army Combat Studies Institute

268 Pages

Published: 2008

On 13 July 2008, nine American Soldiers perished while fighting a pitched battle in the village of Wanat in Afghanistan’s Waygal Valley. On that day, the men of Company C, 2d Battalion, 503d Parachute Infantry Regiment, endured four hours of intense close quarters combat and mounting casualties. The contingent of 49 United States and 24 Afghan National Army Soldiers valiantly defended their small outpost against a coordinated attack by a determined insurgent force armed with rocket propelled grenades and automatic weapons. Despite the initial advantage of tactical surprise and numerical superiority, it was the insurgents who ultimately broke contact and withdrew from Combat Outpost Kahler.

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Weapon of Choice: ARSOF in Afghanistan

Weapon of Choice: ARSOF in Afghanistan

By Charles H. Briscoe, Richard L. Kiper, Kalev I. Sepp, James A. Schroder

438 Pages

Published: 2003

The purpose of this book is to share Army special operations soldier stories with the general American public to show them what various elements accomplished during the war to drive the Taliban from power and to destroy al-Qaeda and Taliban strongholds in Afghanistan as part of the global war on terrorism. The purpose of the book is not to resolve Army special operations doctrinal issues, to clarify or update military defi nitions, or to be the “definitive” history of the continuing unconventional war in Afghanistan.

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Wrath of Achilles: Essays on Command in Battle

Wrath of Achilles: Essays on Command in Battle

By Colonel Richard D. Hooker, Jr.

220 Pages

Published: 2011

“Sing Goddess, of the wrath of Achilles, Peleus’ son.” So begins the Iliad, the greatest war epic in western culture. Since the dawn of recorded history, the history of man has been nearly synonymous with the history of war, a history that begins with Homer and continues today. Then as now, war remains the ultimate arbiter of human affairs, an awful and ever-present reminder of humanity’s failure to escape its wrathful roots. Seemingly inescapable, war is supremely important because it is the great destroyer of states and populations and whole cultures. And so the question itself is crucial to the survival of the state.

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