David J. Kilcullen Special Advisor for Counterinsurgency to the Secretary of State RAND Insurgency Board  May 8, 2008 Dino...
An unforgiving environment that punishes error Leading to Darwinian pressure on both sides…
1. Diagnosing the Problem – a Vicious Circle Extremists infiltrate Sunni communities, establish base areas through intimid...
2. Breaking the Cycle – Sustainable Stability De-celerants: Political reconciliation Competent, non-sectarian  governance ...
Lines of Operation (generic) April 2007 Developing Security Forces Support Government Insurgent Neutral or Passive Support...
Lines of Operation (JSAT) Campaign Goal Near Term  - End to large scale sectarian violence, improved population security, ...
Campaign Concept 2007-8 (JSAT, Mar 07) Coalition Force Level   CRITICAL FACTORS: Time, Leverage, US political will, GOI pe...
A TENTATIVE THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK <ul><li>Insurgent and Counterinsurgent Adaptation in Iraq,  </li></ul><ul><li>RAND Insur...
<ul><li>Methodology: qualitative, subjective first-hand field research based on participant observation,  backed by quanti...
The logic of field observation in Iraq <ul><li>Everyone sees Iraq differently, depending on when they served there, what t...
My role (hence, my bias) <ul><li>Senior counterinsurgency advisor to Commanding General MNF-I (Petraeus) </li></ul><ul><li...
Tentative theoretical model for Insurgent & Counterinsurgent Learning The “Metz Threshold” Time  Performance “ Acceptabili...
<ul><li>Observations: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The counterinsurgent always starts from behind in terms of  objective performa...
<ul><li>Scope (Operational vs Institutional learning) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Operational  (pertaining to that part of an in...
Example adaptations Institutional Adaptation Institutional Evolution Operational Evolution Operational Adaptation New TTPs...
<ul><li>Observation seems to suggest that counterinsurgents typically undergo relatively  slow operational adaptation  dur...
<ul><li>General evolutionary effect: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Attrition imposed by combat action culls less well-adapted memb...
INSURGENT EVOLUTION <ul><li>Insurgent and Counterinsurgent Adaptation in Iraq,  </li></ul><ul><li>RAND Insurgency Board, 8...
Iraq – Sunni insurgent Networks UNCLASSIFIED Derived from OSINT DJ Kilcullen / JSAT / March 07 Mujahideen Central  Command...
Insurgent Organizational Evolution –  Jaish al Mahdi Political Leadership Propaganda wing Social Services / Charity Militi...
EVOLUTION OF IMPROVISED  EXPLOSIVE DEVICES
IED tactical counter-mobility – overpass attacks during surge Route Grizzlies, 10 June 2007, 0500 am
Strategic counter-mobility ops or copy-cat attacks? Sarafiyya Bridge attack, April 2007
28 MAY 07 - DOWNED OH-58 - TIMELINE AS OF 29 0630D MAY 07 LEGEND LOCATION  WHO: MND-N  WHAT: DOWNED OH-58 WHEN: 281816D MA...
Attacks Matrix SEP 06 - MAY 07 AS OF 30 MAY 07 Dates IDF SAF IEDDIS IEDDET IED TOTAL VBIED Total SEP 06 55 (25) 29 (4) 27 ...
<ul><li>MISSION:  NLT 23 0330 MAR 07 4/6 IA ICW TF 2-15 attacks to disrupt AIF in the KILO 12 and KILO 18 areas IOT deny A...
29 MAY 07, TF 2-15 ICW 4/6 IA OPSUM, EAGLE RAZOR SOUTH II DETAINEES: 13 X LN DETAINED INJURIES: 1 X US WIA BR# SM0998; MED...
COUNTERINSURGENT ADAPTATION <ul><li>Insurgent and Counterinsurgent Adaptation in Iraq,  </li></ul><ul><li>RAND Insurgency ...
<ul><li>Commanding Generals have a long history of employing specialist advisers (e.g. Allenby/Lawrence, Rommel/Laszlo Alm...
<ul><li>Participation in BUA, JECB, CIG activities, GOI engagement, campaign/strategic planning activities </li></ul><ul><...
ADVISING U.S. FORCES
ADVISING IRAQI FORCES
ADVISING IRAQI & U.S. CIVILIAN AGENCIES
DESIGN AND DELIVERY OF FORMAL TRAINING
Rapid Adaption 1 – MNC-I COIN Guidance <ul><li>Need to orient incoming BCTs to new approach, re-orient in-theater BCTs, an...
Rapid Adaption 2 – Local Security Forces <ul><li>Need to exploit rapid un-solicited emergence of anti-AQI Sunni groups in ...
Rapid Adaption 3 – BCT & PRT Orientation <ul><li>Need to re-orient incoming surge BCTs, ePRTs and USM-I personnel to new a...
Rapid Adaption 4 – Deciding to Dismount <ul><li>Progressive co-evolution of IEDs and countermeasures had alienated CF from...
New Tactics 1 -- Urban Oilspot HYPOTHETICAL EXAMPLE Reconstruction Zone Initial focus of ops. Selected where pop most supp...
New Tactics 2 – IED counter-ambush A B Chokepoint –  likely IED site somewhere in here Of all key locations, the actual IE...
<ul><li>Invented by McMaster in Tal Afar (2005), refined by Kilcullen (2007), applied in NW Baghdad and southern belts. </...
INSURGENT & COUNTERINSURGENT CO-EVOLUTION <ul><li>Insurgent and Counterinsurgent Adaptation in Iraq,  </li></ul><ul><li>RA...
<ul><li>IED and counter-IED </li></ul><ul><li>Sniper and counter-Sniper </li></ul><ul><li>Iraqi tribal uprising against AQ...
5b 10 6 7 11 10 10 10 IDF ATTACKS ON THE GREEN ZONE MAR 07 <ul><li>10 MAR  07 – 1X 122MM RKT IN FOB HONOR </li></ul><ul><l...
SNIPER AND COUNTER-SNIPER
THE TRIBAL UPRISING
<ul><li>“ There remained the technique and direction of the new revolts: but the direction a blind man could see...The pro...
Albu Mahal NW Anbar, Nineveh First to turn against AQI Vines, McMaster The Iraqi revolt  -- tribal ladder Revolt takes off...
INSIGHTS AND CONCLUSIONS <ul><li>Insurgent and Counterinsurgent Adaptation in Iraq,  </li></ul><ul><li>RAND Insurgency Boa...
<ul><li>By mid-April 07, AQI began to slip behind the destruction-replenishment cycle, and could no longer replace mid-lev...
The logic of local partnerships Option 1 – insert 50 000 U.S. troops into theater FOB security, logistics, HQ, rear area o...
<ul><li>In a counterinsurgency, insurgent groups and security forces appear to engage in time- and resource- competitive p...
<ul><li>This “conflict ethnography” will only be applicable to situations that are broadly analogous – these may be rare <...
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  • Kilcullen Rand Coin May 2008

    1. 1. David J. Kilcullen Special Advisor for Counterinsurgency to the Secretary of State RAND Insurgency Board May 8, 2008 Dinosaurs versus Mammals: Insurgent and Counterinsurgent Adaptation in Iraq, 2007
    2. 2. An unforgiving environment that punishes error Leading to Darwinian pressure on both sides…
    3. 3. 1. Diagnosing the Problem – a Vicious Circle Extremists infiltrate Sunni communities, establish base areas through intimidation Sunni extremists attack neighboring Shi’a communities Shi’a militias and “death squads” attack Sunni communities Sectarian attacks intimidate Sunni communities, which close ranks Accelerants: AQI terrorism Foreign fighters Iranian infiltration Crime & unemployment 1 2 3 4
    4. 4. 2. Breaking the Cycle – Sustainable Stability De-celerants: Political reconciliation Competent, non-sectarian governance & institutions Extremists infiltrate Sunni communities, establish base areas through intimidation Sunni extremists attack neighboring Shi’a communities Shi’a militias and vigilantes attack Sunni communities Sectarian attacks intimidate Sunni communities, which close ranks 1 2 3 4 Joint Security Stations & EPRT civil programs protect communities, render them resistant to infiltration Joint Security Stations protect people in their homes Market and district hardening programs, and Joint Security Stations protect public places against terrorism Domination of “belts” and control of access to Baghdad prevents “commuter insurgents” and infiltration Access controls prevent Sunni extremists entering Shi’a areas Gated communities prevent Sunni extremists infiltrating Sunni areas Gated communities prevent Shi’a extremists entering Sunni areas
    5. 5. Lines of Operation (generic) April 2007 Developing Security Forces Support Government Insurgent Neutral or Passive Support Government Insurgent Neutral or Passive Attitude of Populace Security Operations Develop Security Forces Better Governance Essential Services Economic Development Information Operations Starting Conditions End State
    6. 6. Lines of Operation (JSAT) Campaign Goal Near Term - End to large scale sectarian violence, improved population security, and substantial progress on political accommodation Intermediate Term - The establishment of a negotiated political agreement that leads to sustainable security Long Term - Iraq at peace with its neighbors and an ally in the War on Terror, with a representative government that respects the human rights of all Iraqis, and security forces sufficient to maintain domestic order and to deny Iraq as a safe haven for terrorists. COMMUNICATION & ENGAGEMENT COMMUNICATION & ENGAGEMENT COMMUNICATION & ENGAGEMENT POLITICAL SECURITY ECONOMIC DIPLOMATIC LOO Goal – Political accommodation agreement leading to a sustainable security situation, marked by a significant reduction in aggregate political violence LOO Goal - End large scale violence; defeat irreconcilables; develop leverage to bring reconcilables to the table; reform ISF; reduce destabilizing external influences LOO Goal - Progress in key sectors of the Iraqi economy supports and reflects movement towards sustainable stabilization and political accommodation LOO Goal - Negative influences from neighbors reduced. Increased Iraqi outreach to region, more acceptance of Iraqi government by region
    7. 7. Campaign Concept 2007-8 (JSAT, Mar 07) Coalition Force Level CRITICAL FACTORS: Time, Leverage, US political will, GOI performance MNF-I applies increased force levels, intimate cooperation with ISF and a focus on population security, to improve security situation between now and February 2008. USM-I exploits improved security, to force key actors toward GOI reform, confidence building measures (‘07) & political accommodation (‘08) resulting in sustainable stability . MNF-I progressively reduces force levels through 2008, aiming for steady state early ‘09 . MAIN EFFORT: Political & diplomatic lines of operation translate security progress into sustainable political stability. window of opportunity Now Feb 08 July 07 Dec 08
    8. 8. A TENTATIVE THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK <ul><li>Insurgent and Counterinsurgent Adaptation in Iraq, </li></ul><ul><li>RAND Insurgency Board, 8 May 2008 </li></ul>
    9. 9. <ul><li>Methodology: qualitative, subjective first-hand field research based on participant observation, backed by quantitative data when available </li></ul><ul><li>Data corruption (especially SIGACTs) frustrated rigorous statistical analysis </li></ul><ul><li>Emphasis on professional judgment and “blink” knowledge </li></ul><ul><li>Selection bias (CF units in toughest areas, requiring most assistance, received greatest attention) </li></ul><ul><li>Risk/stress/effort inherent in data collection clouds judgment & skews emphasis </li></ul><ul><li>Regional focus (Baghdad, belts, Anbar, Diyala) not necessarily transferable </li></ul><ul><li>Little direct interaction with UK forces in Basra </li></ul><ul><li>Poor Iraqi Arabic dialect language skills (some MSA) – views of male, urbanized, educated Iraqis are therefore privileged in research </li></ul><ul><li>Emotional factors – sympathy for Iraqi nationalists, (over)concern for the civil population, distaste for Shi’a clericalists, over time intense hatred for AQI & JAM </li></ul>Research Limitations These research results provide a “ conflict ethnography ” of central Iraq in 2007, producing what anthropologists call a thick description of one time-and-area-specific case study – broader applicability is problematic
    10. 10. The logic of field observation in Iraq <ul><li>Everyone sees Iraq differently, depending on when they served there, what they did, and where they worked. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The environment is highly complex, ambiguous and fluid </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>It is extremely hard to know what is happening – trying too hard to find out can get you killed…and so can not knowing </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Observer effect” and data corruption create uncertainty, and invite bias </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Knowledge of Iraq is very time-specific and location-specific </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Prediction in complex systems (like insurgencies) is mathematically impossible…but we can’t help ourselves, we do it anyway </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Hence, observations from one time/place may or may not be applicable elsewhere, even in the same campaign in the same year: we must first understand the essentials of the environment, then determine whether analogous circumstances exist, before attempting to apply “lessons”. </li></ul>
    11. 11. My role (hence, my bias) <ul><li>Senior counterinsurgency advisor to Commanding General MNF-I (Petraeus) </li></ul><ul><li>No specific direction on what to do or how, just broad guidance on what to achieve (rapid shift of focus across MNF-I and ISF) and why (need to get through learning curve ASAP to make the Surge work) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Very limited background in organizational change theory / organizational learning literature, just “made it up as I went along” (could have done with insights from Dr Davidson / LTC Nagl) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Design of the 2007-2008 MNF-I Joint Campaign Plan (the “surge”), the MNC-I Counterinsurgency Guidance, and training packages for MNF-I, ISF and USM-I </li></ul><ul><li>Field counterinsurgency support (combat advising) with the: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Multi-National Force-Iraq and subordinate units </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>U.S. Mission-Iraq (Embassy, AID mission, Office of Regional Affairs) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Embedded Provincial Reconstruction Teams </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Iraqi government (civil, military, police, intelligence) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Raising, vetting and employing tribal irregular forces ( AFF , shurta isanad , sahwa al Anbar , abna al ’Iraq ) </li></ul><ul><li>Approx. 65% field-deployed, 35% headquarters/embassy – almost all muhalla time was in Baghdad, the northern and southern belts and the so-called “triangle of death” south/SW of Baghdad City (the “fiyas”) </li></ul>
    12. 12. Tentative theoretical model for Insurgent & Counterinsurgent Learning The “Metz Threshold” Time Performance “ Acceptability Gradient” (politically defined) Counterinsurgent Performance Insurgent Performance Counterinsurgent starts behind acceptability gradient 1 Insurgent starts ahead of acceptability gradient 2 Counterinsurgent’s adaptation prompts evolution in insurgent 4 Rising expectations invoke “red queen effect” for counterinsurgent 6 Insurgent and counterinsurgent performance converge through co-evolution 7 Counterinsurgent failure to meet rising expectations may prompt insurgent “take-off” 8 Counterinsurgent adapts to environment and improves 3 Counterinsurgent must achieve acceptable performance before Metz threshold reached 5
    13. 13. <ul><li>Observations: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The counterinsurgent always starts from behind in terms of objective performance , as well as in terms of performance acceptability (Galula 1964,Thompson 1966) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Counterinsurgency techniques decline in effectiveness as a function of time , speed and scope of onset , and insurgent familiarity (Beitler 1995, Kilcullen 2004b) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The counterinsurgent must achieve acceptable performance by the time political patience runs out, requiring an organizational learning response (Davidson 2005,Nagl 2002/2005) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The historical U.S. threshold for political patience is 3 years (Metz, 2007) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Hypotheses: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The acceptability gradient is defined by domestic political perceptions , and governed by the tyranny of rising expectations </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>In a “domestic counterinsurgency”, there is one acceptability gradient, hence insurgent and counterinsurgent performance are systemically coupled (through the mechanism of competition for support of one domestic population) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>In a “third-party counterinsurgency” (Simpson 2008), there are multiple gradients – one for each constituency within the domestic polity, one for each intervener – hence insurgent and counterinsurgent performance are decoupled in terms of acceptability, though mutually influential through a process of co-evolution </li></ul></ul>Observations and Hypotheses
    14. 14. <ul><li>Scope (Operational vs Institutional learning) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Operational (pertaining to that part of an institution actually engaged in operations) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Institutional (pertaining to the entirety of an institution, including its supporting structures and processes outside theater) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Permanence (Adaptation vs Evolution) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Adaptation (structural or behavioral modifications of a temporary or ad hoc nature that occur within one generation and improve fitness for the environment, but may not be sustained over multiple generations) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Evolution (changes of a permanent or semi-permanent nature that occur over, and are sustained over multiple generations – tours, life cycles or posting cycles) </li></ul></ul>Scope & Permanence – key factors?
    15. 15. Example adaptations Institutional Adaptation Institutional Evolution Operational Evolution Operational Adaptation New TTPs New personnel systems New collective training New individual training New In-theater organizations New permanent units Budget changes Supplemental funding Permanence Scope
    16. 16. <ul><li>Observation seems to suggest that counterinsurgents typically undergo relatively slow operational adaptation during a campaign, and only engage in institutional evolution more slowly (possibly not until after the campaign’s outcome has already been determined) </li></ul><ul><li>Conversely, insurgents (especially those with loose organizational structures or fluid network architecture) may be more likely to evolve rapidly (through attrition and natural selection over “generations” of insurgent life-cycle), as well as engaging in purposeful adaptation at “street” level </li></ul><ul><li>Is this pattern apparent in Iraq in 2007? </li></ul><ul><li>Should we expect insurgents with tighter structures and hierarchies (e.g. JAM) to adapt in a similar fashion to counterinsurgents, while looser networks (Sunnis) evolve in a more fluid fashion? </li></ul>Hypothesis: counterinsurgents adapt slowly, insurgents evolve quickly? Counterinsurgents are dinosaurs (powerful, dominant, slow to adapt); insurgents are more like early mammals (small, furtive, will lose any encounter with dinosaurs but potentially out-compete and out-evolve them over time)
    17. 17. <ul><li>General evolutionary effect: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Attrition imposed by combat action culls less well-adapted members of the insurgent network, improving overall quality </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Weaker, smaller networks coalesce or collapse and are absorbed by stronger networks </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Leadership evolution (destruction-replenishment cycle): </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Targeting of insurgent HVTs creates greater attrition at the mid-upper leadership level than at any other </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Hence networks have a relatively stable senior leadership core, but rapid turnover at mid-level </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Junior leaders are more familiar with the environment and CF TTPs, hence better adapted to current conditions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Older leaders are tired, combat-shocked, increasingly over-confident or careless, more likely to be attrited </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>This keeps leadership improving over time, unless attrition rate too high to be sustained or a critical mass (say, 25% of insurgent middle leadership) killed/captured (cf Israeli data on PIJ) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Bell Curve effect: </li></ul>Hypothesis: mechanisms for insurgent evolution Rate of attrition x % per unit time Too little attrition to generate meaningful evolution Too much attrition for destruction-replenishment cycle to operate Significant evolutionary effect
    18. 18. INSURGENT EVOLUTION <ul><li>Insurgent and Counterinsurgent Adaptation in Iraq, </li></ul><ul><li>RAND Insurgency Board, 8 May 2008 </li></ul>
    19. 19. Iraq – Sunni insurgent Networks UNCLASSIFIED Derived from OSINT DJ Kilcullen / JSAT / March 07 Mujahideen Central Command Coordination Department of the Jihad Brigades Jeish al-Ta'eifa al-Mansoura Victorious Army Group Jama’a al Murabitin Jaish al Sunna wa’l Jama’a Ansar al Tawhid Brigades Islamic Jihad Brigades Tanzim Qa’idat fil Balad ar Rafidayn Al Qa’ida in Mesopotamia Strangers’ Brigades Horror Brigades 1920s Revolutionary Brigades Islamic Iraqi Resistance Front Ja’ami Jaish al Mujahidin Islamic Army in Iraq Ansar al Sunna Blended org, FREs + jihadists, formerly Ansar al Islam Kurdish Shia & Sunni Leaders, long-standing personal links to AMZ, home ground advantage in KRG area (Ba’athists / Former Regime Elements) Muslim Ulema Council (former Ba’athist Society of Islamic Scholars ) Green Brigades Jaish Muhammad Mujahidin Shura Council (ISI may have taken over) Abdullah Janabi friends with Izzat al-Duri & Harith al-Dari (all three Baathists, sufis, fedayeen, IIS – Not Salafists, sufis [tarekat links] Kamis al-Sirhan Muhammad Yunis Ahmad al Hamdani (al Duri’s deputy in Mil Bureau – Saddam’s network for religious-based organization of insurgency, kept eye on tribes, mosques & security orgs – old boy network ) Larger in numbers Iraqi Turkmen Front (Turkish govt links?)
    20. 20. Insurgent Organizational Evolution – Jaish al Mahdi Political Leadership Propaganda wing Social Services / Charity Militia / Local insurgents Special Groups Criminal elements JAM 2005-6 Political leadership divided Propaganda efforts weak Social services growing JAM 2007 Crafting a “Hizb’allah model” Propaganda and social services strengthened, Criminal elements starting to be eliminated Political Leadership Propaganda wing Social Services / Charity Militia / Local insurgents Special Groups
    21. 21. EVOLUTION OF IMPROVISED EXPLOSIVE DEVICES
    22. 22. IED tactical counter-mobility – overpass attacks during surge Route Grizzlies, 10 June 2007, 0500 am
    23. 23. Strategic counter-mobility ops or copy-cat attacks? Sarafiyya Bridge attack, April 2007
    24. 24. 28 MAY 07 - DOWNED OH-58 - TIMELINE AS OF 29 0630D MAY 07 LEGEND LOCATION WHO: MND-N WHAT: DOWNED OH-58 WHEN: 281816D MAY 07 WHERE: 38S MC 7696 5353 28 MAY 1816D- 0H-58 (SB 56) DOWNED 38S MC 7696 5353, 16KM W. OF MUQDADIYAH. SWT RECEIVED SAFIRE FROM SINGLE POO. SB 56 CONDUCTED ATTACK RUN RESULTING IN CATASTROPHIC DAM TO SB 56. B26 EVADED ENEMY FIRE. 1820D- 3-1 CAV RECEIVED MAYDAY CALL FROM DOWNED OH-58. QRF ALERTED. ANOTHER AWT RESPONDED TO CRASH SITE AND ASSISTS SB26 IN SECURING SITE. 1842D- CAS (2X F-16) OVERHEAD. 1848D- A UH-60 TEAM (LIGHTNING 06) IVO CRASH SITE LANDED AND PICKED UP OH-58 CREW. AWT PROVIDED SUPPRESSIVE FIRE – 2X CF (US) KIA . UH-60 CASEVACED CAS TO FOB WARHORSE. 1940D- AWT (REDWOLF 06) ENGAGED 3X AIF AT CRASH SITE – 2X AIF KIA. 2006D- GROUND QRF IN ROUTE (3-1 CAV QRF – 4X M1114, 2X M2, 24X PAX) 2024D- 5W’s SENT TO COMMAND GROUP FROM MNFI CHOPS (OIC). 2034D- DART INBOUND TO DO PHO. 2035D- QRF HIT IED ENROUTE TO CRASH SITE, 5X CF (US) KIA, 3X CF (US) WIA AND 1X M2 BFV DAMAGED. 2048D- A10 HAD EYES ON DOWNED A/C CRASH SITE. 2051D- AASLT QRF LANDED AND SECURED THE CRASH SITE. TEAM INCLUDED EOD AND MAINT TECH. 2200D- A/C TI CONDUCTED – A/C TOTAL LOSS. 2309D- EOD DESTROYED A/C. 29 MAY 290265D DURING RECOVERY OF THE M2 BFV FROM IED STRIKE, A SECOND IED EXPLODED UNDER THE M2 BFV, 1X CF (US) KIA BDA: 8X CF (US) KIA, 3X CF (US) WIA, 2X AIF KILLED, 1X OH-58 DESTROYED, 1X BFV DAMAGED 2048D - QRF HIT IED SAF/HMG POO 1816D - OH-58 CRASH SITE
    25. 25. Attacks Matrix SEP 06 - MAY 07 AS OF 30 MAY 07 Dates IDF SAF IEDDIS IEDDET IED TOTAL VBIED Total SEP 06 55 (25) 29 (4) 27 (1) 33 (4) 60 (5) 1 (0) 152 (34) OCT 06 46 (22) 33 (6) 23 (3) 28 (4) 51 (7) 2 (1) 132 (36) NOV 06 34 (13) 18 (2) 15 (2) 23 (2) 38 (2) 3 (3) 93 (22) DEC 06 16 (5) 28 (1) 11 (0) 31 (7) 42 (7) 8 (6) 94 (19) JAN07 39 (9) 34 (3) 41 (4) 23 (2) 64 (6) 2 (1) 139 (19) FEB 07 38 (5) 39 (3) 23 (1) 22 (1) 45 (2) 4 (3) 126 (13) MAR 07 34 (4) 32 (7) 47 (4) 24 (3) 71 (7) 3 (2) 140 (20) APR 07 43(13) 25 (2) 18 (1) 20 (3) 38 (4) 1 (1) 107 (20) MAY 07 35(6) 41(3) 15 (2) 17 (3) 32 (5) 2 (2) 110 (16) Change SEP 06- MAY07 20 12 12* 16 28 1 42 SEP 06 MAY 07
    26. 26. <ul><li>MISSION: NLT 23 0330 MAR 07 4/6 IA ICW TF 2-15 attacks to disrupt AIF in the KILO 12 and KILO 18 areas IOT deny AIF FOI and FOM within 1/4/6 AO and establish IA BP on key terrain along ASR TEMPLE </li></ul><ul><li>SUMMARY: </li></ul><ul><li>Successful brigade size operation along ASR TEMPLE. The Brigade was able to disrupt AIF activity while emplacing a new battle position (BP158). </li></ul><ul><li>Discovered 9 weapons caches </li></ul><ul><li>Eliminated 7 IDF systems </li></ul><ul><li>Captured 13 Black list personnel </li></ul><ul><li>Discovered and eliminated 4 IEDs </li></ul>23 MAR 07, 4/6 IA ICW 2-15 FA, OPERATION EAGLE DIVE RFL OBJ BULLS D104A NEW BP D103A ZONE WEST ZONE SOUTH ZONE EAST ZONE CENTRAL TM BP TAC / QRF ATK PSN SOUTH ATK PSN WEST ATK PSN CENTRAL ATK PSN EAST OBJ PLATINI OBJ FONTAINE OBJ KOPA OBJ MUELLER OBJ HENRY OBJ SCHUMACHER OBJ KLINSMANN OBJ BIERHOFF OBJ KAHN OBJ VOELLER OBJ CANTONA OBJ PAPIN OBJ VAVA OBJ ZICO OBJ BURRUCHAGA OBJ RONALDO OBJ CRESPO OBJ RONALDINHO OBJ CANIGGIA ZONE CENTRAL
    27. 27. 29 MAY 07, TF 2-15 ICW 4/6 IA OPSUM, EAGLE RAZOR SOUTH II DETAINEES: 13 X LN DETAINED INJURIES: 1 X US WIA BR# SM0998; MEDEVAC, GS WOUND TO LEG, TREATED AND RTD STATUS Cache Found : 1. MB 241 444 2. MB 242 442 3. MB 241 442 4. MB 238 441 5. MB 257 421 6 X BAGS UBE 4 X CANS 30MM 1 X SPARE BARREL AA 2000 X PROPAGANDA CD’S 1800 X BLANK CD’S 1 X CD WRITER 2 X GRNADE FUSES 1 X AK-47 WITH MAGAZINE 300 X CASSETTES 1 X WASHINE MACHINE TIMER COPPER WIRE
    28. 28. COUNTERINSURGENT ADAPTATION <ul><li>Insurgent and Counterinsurgent Adaptation in Iraq, </li></ul><ul><li>RAND Insurgency Board, 8 May 2008 </li></ul>
    29. 29. <ul><li>Commanding Generals have a long history of employing specialist advisers (e.g. Allenby/Lawrence, Rommel/Laszlo Almaszy, Templer/Richard Noone, Woodward/Ewen Southby-Tailyour) </li></ul><ul><li>Not the first senior COIN adviser (built on experience of others, stood on shoulders of giants like Kalev Sepp and, more distantly, drew on methodology of Bernard Fall, Gregory Bateson and Gerald Hickey ) </li></ul><ul><li>Cycled between personal interaction with CG MNF-I (daily), Ambassador and AID Mission Director (weekly), Station Chief (occasionally) and field interaction at BCT, PRT, Bn and Coy level </li></ul><ul><li>Extremely high degree of autonomy, “liminal” status (“pet expert”, diplomat operating under military authority and ROE, SES rank) </li></ul><ul><li>Acted as an “accelerant” to: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Interpret CG’s guidance for execution-level officers, </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Provide ground truth and a feedback loop to CG on issues and conditions for those executing the mission, </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Conduct ops research on COIN best practices and feed latest TTPs to training and planning staffs, </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Create informal communities of practice across units and districts, and </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Provide technical (anthro/soc sci/COIN) advice to CG </li></ul></ul>Senior COIN Advisor Sepp, 2005 Fall, 1967 Kilcullen, 2007
    30. 30. <ul><li>Participation in BUA, JECB, CIG activities, GOI engagement, campaign/strategic planning activities </li></ul><ul><li>Select units for advisory support based on unit background and performance + nature of task (big-picture criticality) – methodology based on participant observation and RRA techniques </li></ul><ul><li>Stages of an advisory deployment (3-5 days with frequent re-visit): </li></ul><ul><ul><li>In-brief with higher HQ (turf/rice-bowl issues) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Field entry phase (rapport-building, establish trust) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Historical discussions (reconcile reported SIGACTs with unit recollections, observe TOC and intel fusion center) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Observation phase (patrols, KLEs, PRT activities, raids, cordon & knock, combat engagements) – some immediate advising as needed </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Advice phase (briefs, skills training, deliver key CG messages, identify equipment, personnel, support and training needs, rectify where feasible, establish ongoing plans with supporting agencies) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Out-brief with higher HQ (no written outbrief product, to encourage honesty) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Community-building phase (email, networking, link-up of similar groups) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Follow-up (2-4 weeks in most cases, sometimes longer) </li></ul></ul>Field Methodology
    31. 31. ADVISING U.S. FORCES
    32. 32. ADVISING IRAQI FORCES
    33. 33. ADVISING IRAQI & U.S. CIVILIAN AGENCIES
    34. 34. DESIGN AND DELIVERY OF FORMAL TRAINING
    35. 35. Rapid Adaption 1 – MNC-I COIN Guidance <ul><li>Need to orient incoming BCTs to new approach, re-orient in-theater BCTs, and align ISF and CF effort </li></ul><ul><li>Conducted intense field ops research activity to identify best practices </li></ul><ul><li>Produced “Field Service Regulations” </li></ul><ul><li>Close consultation with MNC-I commander’s advisor (Sky), DIV and BCT HQs </li></ul><ul><li>Posted in all JSS/PBs </li></ul><ul><li>Standardized approach for all assets, civil/military </li></ul>Developed approach late March, field work throughout April, briefing (MNF-I, USM-I, IMOD, CENTCOM, MNC-I) late April to early May, drafting (to draft 18) May, field testing late May, guidance issued early June 2007.
    36. 36. Rapid Adaption 2 – Local Security Forces <ul><li>Need to exploit rapid un-solicited emergence of anti-AQI Sunni groups in Baghdad and belts </li></ul><ul><li>Anbar model ( saHwa ) not directly applicable, local alliances burgeoning out of control, GOI panicking </li></ul><ul><li>Conducted field work with former insurgents, SOF, AWG and partnering US units to develop best practices and safeguards </li></ul>Began tracking phenomenon closely Apr/May 07, participation in Battle of Ameriya (2-7 June 07) gave urgent impetus, close coord with MNC-I, USM-I and FSEC, fielded final draft late Jun 07, FRAGO early Jul 07.
    37. 37. Rapid Adaption 3 – BCT & PRT Orientation <ul><li>Need to re-orient incoming surge BCTs, ePRTs and USM-I personnel to new approach and new environment </li></ul><ul><li>Focus on the 20 weeks leading up to Sep 07 congressional testimony </li></ul><ul><li>Training at Taji COIN academy, BCT and Bn headquarters, and Embassy/AID Mission compound </li></ul>Developed initial brief March 07, continuous refinement and development Mar-July 07, briefed weekly or more often
    38. 38. Rapid Adaption 4 – Deciding to Dismount <ul><li>Progressive co-evolution of IEDs and countermeasures had alienated CF from pop </li></ul><ul><li>New devices (EFPs, DBIEDs, RPG-29) made up-armd vehicles vulnerable anyway </li></ul><ul><li>Ops Research for MNC-I guidance suggested dismounting would build bond with pop, reduce IED cas, increase sniper cas </li></ul><ul><li>Made risk judgment to proceed with dismount in late May, in time for Arrowhead series (June 07) </li></ul>Counterintuitive result: sniper risk up , IED risk up . (82d Abn and 10 th Mtn casualties) Emergency field intervention – discovered foot patrol skills had atrophied, instituted crash re-training (AWG). IED and sniper cas immediately dropped and kept dropping, patrol situational awareness and rapport improved.
    39. 39. New Tactics 1 -- Urban Oilspot HYPOTHETICAL EXAMPLE Reconstruction Zone Initial focus of ops. Selected where pop most supports CF. PRT main effort. Permanently garrisoned. Must protect population 24/7. No kinetic ops in here without PRT clearance. No expansion until fully secure. 1 Security & Influence Zone BCT main effort. Mission is to protect RZ from enemy infil. Pop in this area are denied benefits of RZ, kept under intrusive control. Joint Influence Teams work here, using progress in RZ as ”object lesson” to convince community leaders to “sign on”. Pop must meet criteria (control youth, report en acty, no anti-CF activity etc.) to be eligible for PRT benefits. Once criteria met, RZ expands into this zone. 2 Disruption Zone Remainder of AOR. Focus of intel and SOF activity. Aim to disrupt enemy, keep off balance, select next oilspot location. 3
    40. 40. New Tactics 2 – IED counter-ambush A B Chokepoint – likely IED site somewhere in here Of all key locations, the actual IED site is least important. Look for early warning OPs, firing and assembly points, infil/exfil routes. Use friendly convoy movement as bait to trigger en action. Pre-position sigint and recon assets to identify teams moving into position, listen for the calls between OP and firing team. Use tank, atk helo or snipers for point engagement of firing team, with ground patrol follow up. Capture OP teams and exploit cellphone data. Spring elements to capture and exploit observation teams, kill or capture firing team, trace back to assembly point, local and district caches. This will require detainee exploitation and THT ops as well as physical exploitation of the firing point. Occupy the assembly point until done. Early warning zone Early warning zone OP OP Firing Point IED site Assembly Point cache Local cache District cache Sponsor
    41. 41. <ul><li>Invented by McMaster in Tal Afar (2005), refined by Kilcullen (2007), applied in NW Baghdad and southern belts. </li></ul><ul><li>Works on the fact that urbanization in Iraq is a relatively recent phenomenon, hence people in urban districts have rural relatives </li></ul><ul><li>Exploits the dynamic whereby insurgents, when pressured in an urban area, run “home” along kinship lines to relatives in rural areas </li></ul>New Tactics 3 -- Demographic Targeting Sadr City (Illustrative only) Cordon & Knock D to D+1 Census / Human terrain analysis reveals inhabitants’ village of origin Powerpoint “ Rogues Gallery” D+7 Exploitation D+7 onward Medcap + THT, D+5
    42. 42. INSURGENT & COUNTERINSURGENT CO-EVOLUTION <ul><li>Insurgent and Counterinsurgent Adaptation in Iraq, </li></ul><ul><li>RAND Insurgency Board, 8 May 2008 </li></ul>
    43. 43. <ul><li>IED and counter-IED </li></ul><ul><li>Sniper and counter-Sniper </li></ul><ul><li>Iraqi tribal uprising against AQI </li></ul>Examples of Co-evolution
    44. 44. 5b 10 6 7 11 10 10 10 IDF ATTACKS ON THE GREEN ZONE MAR 07 <ul><li>10 MAR 07 – 1X 122MM RKT IN FOB HONOR </li></ul><ul><li>10 MAR 07 – 3X 122MM RKT IVO CP BLACK </li></ul><ul><li>10 MAR 07 – 1X 122MM IVO US EMBASSY (FRONT FOUNTAIN) </li></ul><ul><li>22 MAR 07 – 2X RND IVO LITTLE VENICE/PM’S OFFICE </li></ul><ul><li>24 MAR 07 – 2x 107MM RKT IVO EMB(5a), KBR TRAILERS(5b) </li></ul><ul><li>25 MAR 07 – 1X 122MM RKT IOV KBR TRAILERS </li></ul><ul><li>26 1405C MAR 07 – 3X 107MM RKT IVO KBR TRAILERS(7a), EMB(7b), EMB(7C) </li></ul><ul><li>26 1609C MAR 07 – 3X 107MM RKT IVO EMB(8a), EMB(8b), KARADA (8c) </li></ul><ul><li>27 0120C MAR 07 – 1X 60MM MORTAR IN IZ </li></ul><ul><li>27 1927 MAR 07 – 1X 107 MM RKT IVO KBR BILLETING OFFICE </li></ul>5 6 7 8 9 10 11 PREPARED BY STRATOPS 28 MAR 07 IDF POI FEB 4 4 3 3 2 2 1 1a 3 9 3 1c 1 4 5d 7d 7e 3 4c 4b 4a 5c 5b 5a 6 7a 7c 7b 8b 8c 5a 8a
    45. 45. SNIPER AND COUNTER-SNIPER
    46. 46. THE TRIBAL UPRISING
    47. 47. <ul><li>“ There remained the technique and direction of the new revolts: but the direction a blind man could see...The process should be to set up another ladder of tribes , comparable to that from Wejh to Akaba: only this time our ladder would be made of steps of Howeitat, Beni Sakhr, Sherarat, Rualla, and Serahin , to raise us three hundred miles to Azrak, the oasis nearest Hauran and Jebel Druse.” </li></ul><ul><li>T.E. Lawrence, Seven Pillars of Wisdom, 1935, Ch. LIX </li></ul>Building a “ladder of tribes” Concept: build a “ladder” of tribal alliances, each bringing you closer to the objective, until the revolt reaches a take-off point and spontaneously ignites
    48. 48. Albu Mahal NW Anbar, Nineveh First to turn against AQI Vines, McMaster The Iraqi revolt -- tribal ladder Revolt takes off Albu Isa Anbar, Ramadi Split btw AQI & tribal allegiance Albu Risha Minor tribe of Dulaim qabila Sitar Abu Risha Killed with 2 sons Sheikh Abd el Sittar ar Rishawi (youngest) survives Zobai Anbar, Zaytun, Baghdad Abu Abed (tribal military leader) (links to 1920s Bde and Moderate imams in Baghdad) Anbar People’s Council Anbar/Tigris Valley Smashed brutally by AQI Jan-Feb 2006 Sahawa al-Anbar (“The Awakening”) Abna al-Anbar / al ‘Iraq (sons of Anbar/Iraq) Battle of Ameriya 2-7 June 07 Ameriya Freedom Fighters Ghazaliya Guardians Concerned Local Citizens etc etc Allen, MacFarland L’Etoile, Burton Abu Abed Kuehl
    49. 49. INSIGHTS AND CONCLUSIONS <ul><li>Insurgent and Counterinsurgent Adaptation in Iraq, </li></ul><ul><li>RAND Insurgency Board, 8 May 2008 </li></ul>
    50. 50. <ul><li>By mid-April 07, AQI began to slip behind the destruction-replenishment cycle, and could no longer replace mid-level and HVTs as they were eliminated – a critical mass (approx 25%) of AQI leaders began to be eliminated and the organization began a cascading collapse </li></ul><ul><li>MNF-I reacted with surprising agility to a series of major events (principally the sahawa and associated uprising) -- cf. 5+ months to react to Samarra bombing 2006 </li></ul><ul><li>Orientation of new arrivals proved easier than re-orientation of units used to old TTPs </li></ul><ul><li>Accelerant tools (Senior COIN Adviser, Archer Teams, Taji Academy, COIN Guidance, civil-military training) assisted greatly in speed of change </li></ul><ul><li>Pairing and embedding of CF with Iraqi units improved performance of both </li></ul><ul><li>Basic COIN approaches proved a useful guide, but had to be applied in a severely time-limited, resource-constrained, tribal environment </li></ul><ul><li>GPF in 2007 possess capabilities that only existed in SMUs in 2001, while SMUs (and SOF generally) possess capabilities that only existed in Hollywood – U.S. Forces are now unequivocally the best in the world at COIN, by a significant margin </li></ul>General Insights
    51. 51. The logic of local partnerships Option 1 – insert 50 000 U.S. troops into theater FOB security, logistics, HQ, rear area or other non-combat tasking: 30 000 Force available for combat tasking on a 1:1 or 2:1 rotation model: 20,000 Force actually out on the ground at any time (ie net effect): 7-10,000 Effect on enemy forces and recruiting base: NIL NET EFFECT: 7-10,000 pax improvement in force ratio Option 2 – win over 50 000 Iraqis into LSFs FOB security, logistics, HQ, rear area or other non-combat tasking: NIL Force available for combat tasking on a 1:1 or 2:1 rotation model: 50,000 Force actually out on the ground at any time (ie net effect): 40,000 Coalition forces required for partnering, mentoring and supervision: 5,000 Effect on enemy forces and recruiting base: -50,000+ NET EFFECT: 80-95,000 pax improvement in force ratio (ie 8 to 12 times the value of inserting CF)
    52. 52. <ul><li>In a counterinsurgency, insurgent groups and security forces appear to engage in time- and resource- competitive processes of adaptation , driven by the Darwinian pressure imposed by a complex, hostile “ conflict ecosystem ” that operates on the edge of chaos </li></ul><ul><li>Counterinsurgents appear mainly to adapt , insurgents to evolve – but insurgent groups whose network and organizational structure is tighter may behave in a more purposeful adaptive manner (e.g. JAM) </li></ul><ul><li>In Iraq in 2007, the following key factors led to relatively rapid coalition adaptation: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>High degree of political will in coalition capitals (do or die) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Quality of senior leadership (Petraeus, Crocker, Odierno) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Units that were relatively familiar with the environment through previous tours </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Close integration/understanding between senior military and civilian leadership </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Focus on, and understanding of, political and influence elements of the campaign </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Presence of “accelerant” organizational learning tools </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Dense internal communications, information and social networks within the force </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Good pre-existing general understanding of COIN techniques across the force </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Coherent civil-military planning and execution (relatively speaking) via the JSAT and Joint Campaign Plan process </li></ul></ul>Conclusions
    53. 53. <ul><li>This “conflict ethnography” will only be applicable to situations that are broadly analogous – these may be rare </li></ul><ul><li>But resource-constrained COIN in tribal environments will be the norm for the foreseeable future </li></ul><ul><li>Further research could focus on: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Methods to assess evolutionary pressure on insurgent groups </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Options to extend the time available before the “Metz threshold” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Development of best-practice learning accelerant tools </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Comparison of year-by-year organizational learning in Iraq </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Understanding the dynamics and force-ratio implications of local alliances </li></ul></ul>Research Implications
    54. 54. Questions/Comments

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