View Full Version : Militant Tricks: Battlefield Ruses of the Islamic Insurgent

11-19-2005, 01:22 PM
William Lind via United Press International - Outside View: Islamist Tricks (http://www.upi.com/SecurityTerrorism/view.php?StoryID=20051119-120044-9934r).

"Militant Tricks: Battlefield Ruses of the Islamic Insurgent" (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0963869582/smallwarsjour-20/103-4813759-1703817?%5Fencoding=UTF8&camp=1789&link%5Fcode=xm2) is the title of John Poole's latest book. Poole, a former Marine NCO and officer, is America's best writer on small unit tactics and techniques. His first book, "The Last Hundred Yards," should be in every fire team, squad and platoon leader's pack. More recently, he has written a series of books that attempt to explain the Eastern, indirect way of war to Western audiences. "Militant Tricks" is the most recent work in that series...

This is really three books in one, and all of them are good. The first book is a detailed description of how our opponents in Iraq and Afghanistan fight. Here Poole's subtitle, "Battlefield Ruses of the Islamic Insurgent", sums up his offering. Unlike Western forces that seek a head-on clash, Eastern warfare relies on tricks. Nothing is what it seems to be. Poole writes...

Most U.S. and British troops have come to see all Muslim insurgents as tactically inept. They don't yet realize that their foe intentionally places poorly trained martyrdom volunteers in their path. With little strategic value, those volunteers are considered expendable. It is their handlers -- the enemy recruiters/trainers/advisors -- who must be stopped. Many are Iranian special operators and as tactically proficient as their U.S. counterparts. Their "throwaway" personnel have accomplished two things: (1) fooling the Coalition as to the real source and sophistication of the insurgency, (2) facilitating the handler's escape...

11-19-2005, 04:24 PM
I saw the Lind post as well.

Interesting that Poole brings in the Iranian intel/Pasdaran angle without discussing SPETSNAZ tactics (http://www.airpower.maxwell.af.mil/airchronicles/apj/apj88/campbell.html)which would be the operational preference of insurgents who had once been in Sadaam's Russian-trained Special Republican Guard and Special Security Organization.

Then again, perhaps Poole does do that and Lind decided not to emphasize it or the " open source" nature of the insurgency has caused these fighters to evolve away from their original Soviet special forces-style M.O.