Small Wars Journal

Blog Posts

SWJ Blog is a multi-author blog publishing news and commentary on the various goings on across the broad community of practice.  We gladly accept guest posts from serious voices in the community.

by The Wall Street Journal | Sat, 10/19/2019 - 2:27am | 0 comments
"A son of the infamous Mexican drug lord Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán is captured. Cartel gunmen respond with a vicious attack on soldiers and civilians across a major Mexican city, killing at least eight people. The government gives in and releases the son, a top figure in the cartel."
by Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty | Sat, 10/19/2019 - 1:28am | 0 comments
At least 62 people have been killed and dozens wounded in an explosion during Friday Prayers at a mosque in eastern Afghanistan, officials say. No group immediately claimed responsibility for the October 18 attack in Nangarhar Province, which came after the United Nations said the number of civilian deaths in the war-torn country had reached "unprecedented" levels over the summer.
by Voice of America | Sat, 10/19/2019 - 12:42am | 0 comments
Turkey's president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan warned Friday that Turkish forces would intensify their operation into Syria if Kurdish militias failed to comply with an agreement struck with the United States. The warning was made as sporadic fighting continued and disputes emerged over the cease-fire terms.
by SWJ Editors | Fri, 10/18/2019 - 4:42pm | 0 comments
Via the Miami Herald - "As Washington focuses on impeachment, Syria and the 2020 presidential elections, Latin America and the Caribbean, once again, seem to be falling apart."
by The Wall Street Journal | Fri, 10/18/2019 - 4:16pm | 0 comments
"America’s humiliating exit from the war in Vietnam was marked by chaotic images of people struggling to board the last helicopters leaving the rooftop of the U.S. Embassy in Saigon. The U.S. didn’t want to leave Syria in similar fashion."
by Military Times | Fri, 10/18/2019 - 2:14pm | 0 comments
"The rapid withdrawal of American troops from Syria is stoking the concerns of Congress and former U.S. defense officials who warn the limited American presence and abandonment of an ally will stymie intelligence collection efforts."
by The Wall Street Journal | Fri, 10/18/2019 - 1:44pm | 0 comments
"Turkish forces tightened their grip around the Kurdish-held town of Ras al-Ain in northeastern Syria on Thursday, prompting local officials to plead for the evacuation of civilians from the besieged city."
by Associated Press | Fri, 10/18/2019 - 2:22am | 0 comments
"The U.S. and Turkey agreed Thursday to a cease-fire in the Turks’ deadly attacks on Kurdish fighters in northern Syria, requiring the Kurds to vacate the area in an arrangement that largely solidifies Turkey’s position and aims in the weeklong conflict. The deal includes a conditional halt to American economic sanctions."
by Center for Strategic & International Studies | Fri, 10/18/2019 - 2:20am | 0 comments
"Both the Obama administration and now more acutely the Trump administration have made catastrophic mistakes in Syria that are costing the United States. Both administrations underestimated the extent to which NATO ally Turkey would go to protect its own interests, how Russia and Iran would rally behind Bashar al-Assad, and that the Assad regime’s pernicious form of governance was the central driver of conflict in Syria—of which the Islamic State is a symptom."
by Defense News | Fri, 10/18/2019 - 2:18am | 0 comments
"House and Senate lawmakers on Thursday left Pentagon briefings on the crisis in Syria frustrated with the tangle of problems that came with President Donald Trump’s decision to pull troops from Syria and voicing new fears the Islamic State will regroup to wage terror."
by Voice of America | Fri, 10/18/2019 - 2:13am | 0 comments
Russian President Vladimir Putin is presenting himself as a peacemaker in the Middle East, the go-to arbiter to whom all regional leaders can turn to, secure in the knowledge that he considers incumbency a good thing and regime change bad, analysts say. When it comes to neighboring Ukraine, though, the picture is different.
by Associated Press | Thu, 10/17/2019 - 5:25pm | 0 comments
"The U.S. and Turkey agreed Thursday to a five-day cease-fire in the Turks’ attacks on Kurdish fighters in northern Syria to allow the Kurds to withdraw to roughly 20 miles away from the Turkish border. The arrangement appeared to be a significant embrace of Turkey’s position in the weeklong conflict."
by Associated Press | Thu, 10/17/2019 - 6:07am | 0 comments
"Syrian forces on Wednesday night rolled into the strategic border town of Kobani, blocking one path for the Turkish military to establish a 'safe zone' free of Syrian Kurdish fighters along the frontier as part of its week-old offensive."
by USNI News | Thu, 10/17/2019 - 5:21am | 0 comments
"Kabul’s ambassador to Washington said 'passing statements' about U.S. withdrawal or peace talks with the Taliban made in American political campaigns are 'not helpful' in setting Afghanistan on the pathway to a future as functioning democratic republic."
by Voice of America | Thu, 10/17/2019 - 5:05am | 0 comments
U.S. President Donald Trump expects a “successful meeting” Thursday in Ankara as his vice president and secretary of state push Turkey to halt its offensive in northeastern Syria, while Trump continues to reject that he is responsible for the operation meant to push Kurdish fighters from the border region.
by DoD News | Thu, 10/17/2019 - 3:54am | 1 comment
The unconventional and insidious threat U.S. adversaries pose is in the "gray zone," the space between U.S. traditional concepts of a peaceful state of affairs and full-scale war, a Defense Department official said.
by Military Times | Wed, 10/16/2019 - 4:23pm | 0 comments
"One after another, the commanders who oversaw this nation’s battles in the Middle East have expressed their distaste for the way that President Donald Trump has handled the long-threatened Turkish invasion of Syria."
by Reuters | Wed, 10/16/2019 - 3:21pm | 0 comments
"Turkey vowed to press ahead with its offensive in northern Syria on Tuesday despite U.S. sanctions and growing calls for it to stop, while Syria’s Russia-backed army moved on the key city of Manbij that was abandoned by U.S. forces."
by Voice of America | Wed, 10/16/2019 - 12:53pm | 0 comments
U.S. President Donald Trump has declared that the Turkish invasion of northeast Syria is "not our problem." In the Oval Office on Wednesday morning, with Italian President Sergio Mattarella at his side, Trump added it is fine for Russia to help and he declared that the Kurds defending their territory inside Syria against the Turkish military are "not angels."
by Defense News | Wed, 10/16/2019 - 2:23am | 0 comments
"The first year for the military exercise Defender Pacific will be smaller in size than its sister drill in Europe in 2020, but it will still be one of the largest exercises conducted by the U.S. Army and its partners and allies in the region since Team Spirit drills in South Korea ended in the early 1990s."
by Associated Press | Wed, 10/16/2019 - 1:30am | 0 comments
"When Syria’s Kurdish fighters, America’s longtime battlefield allies against the Islamic State, announced over the weekend that they were switching sides and joining up with Damascus and Moscow, it seemed like a moment of geopolitical whiplash."
by The British Broadcasting Corporation | Wed, 10/16/2019 - 12:17am | 0 comments
"Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has rejected a US call for an immediate ceasefire in northern Syria, saying Turkey's offensive will continue."
by Voice of America | Wed, 10/16/2019 - 12:14am | 0 comments
U.S. Vice President Mike Pence will head a high-level delegation to Turkey to press that country's president to halt his invasion of northeast Syria, President Donald Trump announced Tuesday.
by The Wall Street Journal | Wed, 10/16/2019 - 12:13am | 0 comments
"The Trump administration dispatched senior officials to Turkey to press for an end to Ankara’s military offensive in northeastern Syria, as Moscow began to fill a void created by departing U.S. troops."
by Military Times | Tue, 10/15/2019 - 3:50pm | 0 comments
"The new partnership for the Kurdish fighters may be an intelligence bonanza for Russia and Syria as U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces have spent years working alongside American commandos gauging tactics, techniques, procedures, equipment, intelligence gathering and even potentially names of operators."