Human Terrain: Tribes

by Breach-Bang-Clear Contributor at Large and Valued Minion Peter Nealan, author of Task Force Desperate. This one talks about human terrain and negotiating it for tactical and strategic advantage, if not operational survival outside the wire.

Tribes

While it may seem, on the surface, that the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan (Wars?  Try battles in the same war) are winding down, anyone who has been paying attention knows that the GWOT is just moving to a new phase.  It didn’t start on 9/11, and it’s not ending in 2014.

            That means we’re going to still be fighting Salafist and Shia jihadists for a very long time.  The following falls under the heading of “Know Thine Enemy.”

            Most parts of the world where Islam holds sway is very tribal.  These tribes often go back thousands of years; part of our fumble in dealing with Iraq and Afghanistan over the last ten years was not understanding at best, or flat-out ignoring at worst, the nature and power of these tribes.  Steven Pressfield [author of the brilliant books The Warrior Ethos, The Afghan Campaign and The Profession and many others] published a series of videos a number of years ago, entitled “It’s the Tribes, Stupid.”  Unfortunately, not many people appeared to have listened.

Read the rest at Breach-Bang-Clear.

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