By Mark Jacobsen, SAASS
/ Published February 03, 2021
SAASS class XXX recently wrapped up SAASS 644: Irregular Warfare, directed once again by Dr. James Kiras and assisted by Col Sean Klimek and Lt Col Mark Jacobsen. The course considered the following questions:
What is irregular warfare? Are irregular conflicts fundamentally different from other types of conflicts? If not, why, and if so, what does this mean for the use of force and the application of military power? Who instigates irregular conflicts and how do they think they can win? What types of irregular adversaries do we face and how have they conceived victory against opponents with superior forces and resources? How are current irregular conflicts different from those of the past? How important are issues such as ideology, geography, time, and technology to victory? How and under what conditions do irregular conflicts end? How do we balance requirements to sustain pressure on violent extremist groups globally while preparing for possible conflict against peer or near-peer competitors?
This year's course included the following books and readings:
Stathis, Kalyvas. The Logic of Violence in Civil War.
Kiras, James. "Irregular Warfare" in David Jordan, et al. Understanding Modern Warfare.
Lawrence, T.E. "The Evolution of a Revolt."
Tse-Tung, Mao. "On Protracted Warfare."
Guevara, Ernesto "Che." Guerrilla Warfare.
Debray, Regis. Revolution in the Revolution: Armed Struggle and Political Struggle in Latin America.
Hoffer, Eric. The True Believer: Thoughts on the Nature of Mass Movements.
Qutb, Sayyid. Milestones.
Shapiro, Jacob. The Terrorist's Dilemma: Managing Violent Covert Organizations.
Kilcullen, David. Out of the Mountains: The Coming Age of the Urban Guerrilla.
Galula, David. Pacification in Algeria, 1956-1958.
Trinquier, Roger. Modern Warfare: A French View of Counterinsurgency.
Staniland, Paul. Networks of Rebellion: Explaining Insurgent Cohesion and Collapse.
Fridman, Ofer. Russian Hybrid Warfare: Resurgence and Politicisation.
Simpson, Emile. War from the Ground Up.