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SAASS Student Support AY23


Air University Library Course Support


9 January 2023 - 27 January 2023

Irregular Conflicts remain elusive and not particularly well understood in the Air Force despite a decade's worth of experience in them.  How we got into such conflicts is not as useful to the strategist as the following set of questions and their answers:

  • 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?

Some materials listed below require access to subscription databases.  If you cannot gain access, contact your local library for availability.  AU students and faculty can contact the center's Database Request Page for a password.

Internet Resources

Listed below is on-line information about books and their authors used in this course.  Library resources are best accessed using commercial internet.

Seminar One

Stathis N. Kalyvas     Biography
The Logic of Violence in Civil War     Review

James Kiras     Biography    (Scroll down to author's name)
Understanding Modern Warfare     Publisher's Information     Review  (Scroll down to pg. 41 of the Journal for Book Reviews)

Seminar Two

Eric Hoffer     Biography 1      Biography 2
The True Believer:  Thoughts on the Nature of Mass Movements     Review 1     Review 2 

John Horgan    Biography
The Psychology of Terrorism    Publisher Description     

Seminar Three

T.E. Lawrence     Biography
The Evolution of a Revolt     Review 1     Review 2

Mao Tse-Tung     Biography
On Protracted War     Review

Seminar Four

Ernesto "Che" Guevara     Biography     Youtube video
Guerrilla Warfare     Review   

Jules Regis Debray     Biography
Revolution in the Revolution?  Armed Struggle and Political Struggle in Latin America     Review  

Raymond Garthoff      
Unconventional Warfare in Communist Strategy     (Article)

Seminar Five 

Jacob Shapiro    Biography
The Terrorist's Dilemma:  Managing Violent Covert Organizations      Review 1     Review 2 

Seminar Six

David Galula            Article    
Pacification in Algeria, 1956-1958     Document Information

Roger Trinquier     Biography   (scroll down to pg. 6 of the document)
Modern Warfare:  A French View of Counterinsurgency     Review

Seminar Seven

Walter Ladwig III     Biography
The Forgotten Front:  Patron-Client Relationships in Counterinsurgency    Review 1    Review 2

Seminar Eight

Forrest Marion     Biography
Flight Risk:  The Coalition Air Advisory Mission in Afghanistan, 2005-2015       Publisher Description

George Monroe    
The Rebirth of the Outback Air Force      (Article)

Seminar Nine

Emile Simpson     Interview
War from the Ground Up:  Twenty-First Century Combat as Politics     Review

Seminar Ten

Seth Jones      Biography
Three Dangerous Men:  Russia, China, Iran and the Rise of Irregular Warfare          Publisher Description

The appearance of hyperlinks does not constitute endorsement by the U.S. Air Force of this web site or the information, products, or services contained therein.  For other than authorized activities such as military exchanges and morale, welfare and recreation sites, the U.S. Air Force does not exercise any editorial control over the information you may find at these locations.  Such links are provided consistent with the stated purpose of this DoD web site.

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