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  1. Sources....

    Bjesse, the AUC was not only formed by coffee growers and cattle ranchers but some groups were formed by the drug cartel leadership. Incidentally, there was some overlap between the cartels and...
  2. Tmembers of the ICC

    Compost, there were 3 members of the ICC established by the 1954 Geneva conference ending the Indochina war: Canada, India, and Poland. Of the 3, only India was more or less neutral. Poland was...
  3. Bias is ALWAYS there

    Compost, your comment really is a nonsequitur. Just because a writer is biased does not mean that he or she cannot control the bias. There are at least two ways of doing this/ (1) State your bias...
  4. Paramilitaries and para militaries and...

    The term paramilitary (and paramilitaries) covers a multitude of sins. First, all police forces but especially those with a SWAT capability are paramilitaries. In fact, the term was created to refer...
  5. D'accord!

    Carl, on this one we are in total agreement. I would only add that where we have supported insurgents, they have won when we were sufficiently steadfast. Two examples: Nicaragua - the contras...
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    Hey Carl

    I had an Ivy League education and I resent that.:wry: Some of us really aren't stupid and can admit our mistakes. Others, on both sides of the aisle, have a real problem admitting they are wrong.
    ...
  7. Reading hanoi's War

    Hanoi's War is very good but, my initial reading is that she overstates the role of the 2 Le's. That they were important, even critical, players is without doubt. But downplaying the role of Ho,...
  8. Ya got me interested

    I just looked up Hanoi's War on Amazon and read the acknowledgements, extended excerpts of the intro, and the Nota Bene. The author is obviously a solid historian. I'm not at all sure that her...
  9. Dien Bien Phu and the Easter Offensive

    After 1949 the PRC was the channel to supply the Viet Minh and later the PAVN (NVA). Much of what they funneled was Soviet made along with stuff from other East Bloc countries. As I recall, the PRC...
  10. Giap

    Giap was, indeed, a great military leader. Generally he used his resources wisely and the one he had the most of was manpower; therefore he expended it, mostly with success. His high point was Dien...
  11. Love the Moose Muss, Mike

    Thanks to Ken.:)

    Serious note: Converging columns was a widely used operation during the Indian Wars and was what was planned in the Little Bighorn campaign until Custer tried it at the tactical...
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    Before Nagl there was Thompson

    Sir Robert Thompson, who was a senior civil servant during the Emergency, wrote a number of serious works on COIN which greatly influenced American COIN doctrine, including FM 3-24. His 1966...
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    correct!

    Carmudgeon, you are correct. there is not a day in the history of the human race that has been without war in some part of the world.

    Fuchs, WWI's causes are much more complex than any short...
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    Respect for law

    Fuchs--

    One reason that small powers, medium powers, and former Great Powers fall back on IL is that they do not have the tools to enforce the norms they want to see enforced and IL is one of the...
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    Your understanding of the world of international relations

    is more than a little skewed, Fuchs. Go back to 1648 in the Germanies. The end of the 30 years war created the world that we know today, only slightly modified. The world is Westphalian (Realist in...
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    Correct - as far as you go, Ulenspiegel...

    but you don't go far enough IMO. In a situation of international anarchy norms - not laws - will be enforced by those who can and have the will. If they are not enforced, the norms lose their status...
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    International Law is NOT US domestic law...

    Gentlemen--

    Under US law a treaty ( and the UN Charter is a treaty) has the same status as a statute passed by Congress and signed by the President. It is superceeded by the next law on the...
  18. Of the 5 rings

    Slap, what you go after depends on what you want to accomplish. First strategic question: what is the objective? Follows from; what is the US interest? Then there is the Clauswitzian question: what...
  19. Anthropologists and HTS

    McFate, who is at the very least the voice (and leader) of HTS is an anthropologist and has been in the center of the conflict within the discipline. Although I am a political scientist (my wife says...
  20. See what nice mess David stirred up LOL

    Good column Brant. I was just responding because I am interested in HTS and looked at the book to see if I might want to buy a copy (hardcopy or Kindle is practically the same price on Amazon:)),...
  21. The Stanton book

    David, I just finished reading the excerpts of the Stanton book found on Amazon. The biggest problem is that his sources are nearly all anonymous and he presents no data to actually support what he...
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    The Savior generals hypthesis

    Crispin Burke generally critiques Gian Gentile's new book very well but he appears to accept Gentile's critique of the myth of the savior generals without serious question. A careful reading of...
  23. These are the kinds of discussions

    that I found so very stimulating when I first found SWJ. thanks Bill.

    Perhaps the distinction between FID, SFA, and occupation operations points in the direction of how we should educate and train...
  24. Bill Moore's 4 points and one other

    Bill's four points/challenges are at the heart of the issue. Let me tak a stab at each:
    1. The shift toward Asia was, in fact, made for perfectly valid strategic reasons. But it also has the effect...
  25. On the quality of participation

    This is my opinion. As such it is clearly open to challenge. But it is based on a fair historical perspective and so might be worth something. At the height of the COIN revival I was fearful that we...
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