Today's terrorist networks will multiply far beyond the wars in Iraq and Syria. When one conflict ends, these fighters often join another. It is critical they be denied safe haven and the ability to train and network in ungoverned territories.
Provides a historical analysis of how militaries have deployed light and mechanized infantry with armored forces during close urban combat, to identify the comparative advantages and costs of this warfighting approach and lessons learned.
When a conflict ends, transnational terrorists are likely to disperse in many directions and switch their allegiances among terrorist groups. For the West, countering these different groups will require a range of strategies.
The United States and Iran differ on many issues, but they signed what has so far been a successful nuclear agreement and both seek to defeat the Islamic State. The U.S. would have more to gain by sticking with the relationship than by pursuing a policy of “regime change.”
As the political-military challenge from China grows, Taiwan's reserve force may need to play a more prominent role in Taipei's approach to deterring Chinese aggression. Changing its reserve force size, structure, roles, missions, equipment, and training could help Taiwan offset PLA advantages.
U.S.-backed Iraqi forces have retaken the east bank of Mosul and are planning to take the west soon. The military operations that oust ISIS are crucial to the city's liberation but failing to get the civilian response right risks a widening civil war.
After six years of fighting in Syria, the odds of removing the Assad regime are worse than ever. But the new U.S. administration could help de-escalate the conflict by focusing on a realistic outcome: a decentralized Syria with agreed regional zones backed by external powers.
This book describes scenarios to test whether the anti-access and area-denial threat to U.S. force projection is growing more severe. They describe plausible U.S. and adversary military actions given current operational capabilities and approaches.
Defeating ISIL is only possible if political conditions change in the Middle East, North and West Africa, and South Asia, and in ways that are exceedingly unlikely. The coalition should focus on reducing ISIL's ability to conduct attacks and on removing the underlying conditions that feed Sunni grievances.
The coalition tasked with countering ISIS has made progress, and ISIS is sure to break apart further over the next few years. Any splinter groups that result could differ from their parent organization, so counterterrorism strategies will need to adjust.
The U.S. counter-ISIL strategy must recognize the long-term nature of the global violent jihadi threat. U.S. diplomatic and military actions should focus on reducing the appeal of ISIL and disrupting the transregional network that supports it.
Most parties have been on the losing side of the war in Syria. Meanwhile, Lebanese terrorist militia Hezbollah has cemented its status as a regional power player. The group has gained fighting experience and benefited from a growing alliance with the Assad regime, Iran, and Russia.
This publication is part of a series of four RAND Perspectives (PE) each focusing on different challenges in the Mediterranean region. The focus of this PE is on regional foreign policy dynamics and their implications for stability and security.
This publication is part of a series of four RAND Perspectives (PE) each focusing on different challenges in the Mediterranean region. The focus of this PE is on defence and security issues and their implications for regional stability.