Military Operations


Observations for Practitioners of Complex Operations

Author: Patrick J. Mahaney Jr.
NATO Defense College

Patrick Mahaney explores the nature and pressing challenges presented by complex operations in an effort to begin a practical approach to them while theories and doctrines are worked out. This paper was used as a guiding document for the Army's Asymmetric Warfare Group and for the development of local security solutions in Afghanistan

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Ask CFR Experts

What role will counterinsurgency operations play in future conflicts?

Asked by Justin McDowell, from Minnesota State University Moorhead

Counterinsurgency (COIN) operations will continue to be a viable option in future conflicts, particularly given rising instability in areas of interest to the United States and its allies. However, the relative feasibility and ability to support large COIN operations is very much in question.

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Media Conference Call: U.S. Policy in Afghanistan

Speakers: Stephen D. Biddle and Max Boot
Presider: Jonathan Tepperman

Following the attack on Afghan civilians by a U.S. Army sergeant, and the recent burning of Qurans by NATO soldiers, the United States' relationship with Afghanistan has come under sharp focus. Listen to CFR senior fellows Stephen Biddle and Max Boot discuss these events, the planned drawdown of U.S. troops by 2014, and the future of U.S. policy toward Afghanistan.

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Iraq: Assessing the Surge (Audio)

Speakers: Linda Robinson and Francis J. West
Presider: Deborah Susan Amos

Listen to Linda Robinson, author in residence at the Johns Hopkins University's Philip Merrill Center for Strategic Studies and Francis J. West, correspondent at the Atlantic Monthly Press, assess the political and strategic effects of the surge in Iraq.

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