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“Building a Better Syrian Opposition Army: How and Why”
Once off the table as U.S. policy, the idea of aiding a moderate Syrian opposition force has been brought to the fore by the rise of ISIS. This study explains how such a policy should be implemented and why it is a reasonable move by the U.S. government. By Kenneth M. Pollack, Brookings Analysis Paper. Pollack is a senior fellow in the Center for Middle East Policy at the Brookings Institution. His most recent book is Unthinkable: Iran, the Bomb, and American Strategy 10/building-syrian-opposition-army-pollack

“Even If We Defeat the Islamic State, We’ll Still Lose the Bigger War”
Since 1980 U.S. forces have invaded, occupied, or bombed 14 Islamic countries. By inadvertently sowing instability, the United States has played directly into the hands of anti-Western radical Islamists intent on supplanting the European-imposed, post-Ottoman order with something more to their liking.
By Andrew J. Bacevich, Washington Post. Bacevich, the George McGovern fellow at Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs, is writing a history of U. S. military involvement in the Greater Middle East.

“Forgotten Lessons of Counterterrorism”
ISIS’s use of hostages recalls the tactics of Middle East terrorists of the 1970s and ‘80s; the Western response ignores lessons learned then about the terrorists’ real goals.  Although the ISIS threats to kill more hostages are ostensibly intended to deter Western military action, they are actually intended to stimulate such action—thus allowing the group to pose as the chief defender of the Sunni Muslim umma against the U.S.-led West.
By Paul R, Pillar, The National Interest. Pillar served 28 years with the CIA. He is now a senior fellow at Georgetown University’s Center for Security Studies and a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution’s Center for 21st Century Security and Intelligence.

“Colin Powell on U.S. Foreign Policy and International Conflicts”
In this 41-minute video interview, the former Secretary of State discusses the U.S. approach to handling the situation in Iraq and Syria. Interviewed by former Undersecretary of State Marc Grossman, he also comments on the use of the military in Western Africa to help contain the Ebola virus.
C-Span. A Sisco Forum Luncheon sponsored by the American Academy of Diplomacy and the World Affairs Council — Washington, D.C.

 “Why Obama Won’t Listen to Leon Panetta”
The latest tell-all book channels weak-leadership concerns inside Obama’s own party.
By Ron Fournier, National Journal.  Fournier is the senior political columnist and editorial director of National Journal.

“Panetta Is Trying to Rewrite History”
Obama administration officials slam the former Secretary of Defense’s seeming inconsistencies on Iraq, Syria—but only in private.
By Michael Hirsh, Politico Magazine. Hirsh is the national editor for Politico Magazine.

“Why Bill O’Reilly’s Interview with Leon Panetta Was So Devastating to President Obama”
The response to Panetta’s message in his memoir has broken along partisan lines. On Fox News Bill O’Reilly challenged him to say even more and say it more plainly.
By John Sexton,  Sexton, a columnist for, is a founder of the blog Verum Serum.

“The Great Revamp: 11 Trends Shaping Future Conflict”
In a world with rising powers and reduced resources, but also rising disorder, what kinds of warfare will U.S. forces have to be prepared for? Two military planners review recent trends that will make a difference.
By Frank Hoffman and Pat Garret, Small Wars Journal.  Hoffman and Garrett are former Marine Corps infantry officers. Garrett is an independent security consultant based in the Pacific Northwest. Hoffman works as a national security analyst in Washington, D.C.

“The Hidden Force in Global Economics: Sending Money Home”
In 2013, international migrants sent $413 billion home to families and friends — three times the total of global foreign aid. This money makes a significant difference in the lives of those receiving it and plays a major role in the economies of many countries. Ratha analyzes how these remittances are often stifled by practical and regulatory obstacles.
By Dilip Ratha, a TED Talk video. Ratha is an economist who heads the World Bank’s Migration and Remittances Unit. dilip_ratha_the_hidden_force_in_global_economics_sending_money_home? utm_source=newsletter_daily&utm_campaign=daily&utm_medium=email&utm_content= button__2014-10-09

“Data-Driven Public Diplomacy: An Evaluation of an Evaluation of an Evaluation”
An insider critiques the U.S. Advisory Commission on Public Diplomacy’s recent report on State Department and Voice of America efforts to use data for strategic planning and evaluation efforts.
By Patricia H Kushlis, Whirled View.    Blogger Patricia Kushlis is a former Foreign Service officer, with a background in public diplomacy. &utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+%24%7BWhirledVi%7D+%28WhirledView%29

 “The Political Geography of Hong Kong’s Protests”
Some theories on why Hong Kong’s mass protests demanding democracy are occurring at intersections around the island, not central squares.
By Bourree Lam, The Atlantic. Lam is an associate editor at The Atlantic. She was previously the editor of

“Scenes from Daily Life in the De Facto Capital of ISIS”
A Syrian who lives in journalist-restricted Raqqa, a city transformed by militant control, comments on life under ISIS.
By an anonymous source, with sketches by Molly Crabapple, Vanity Fair.

“Why the U.S. Government’s Counterterrorism Tweeters Are Finding it Tough to Fight ISIS Online”
In 2011, the State Department launched its Center for Strategic Counter-terrorism Communication. Its goal: to directly engage online with people overseas who were drawn to extremist organizations. The latest online campaign, called “Think, Turn Away,” is directed at ISIS recruiting.
By Jenna McLaughlin, Mother Jones.

“The Revival of Slavery Before the Hour”
A look inside Dabiq, the online English version of Isis’s glossy magazine aimed at recruiting young Muslims worldwide. An article on page 14 of the current issue justifies slavery for the women and children of the Yazidis – “devil worshippers,” as the magazine terms them – in Iraq.
No author, Dabiq on the Clarion Project.

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