This is a longer topic (and I actually have two pieces I've submitted that I hope come out soon related to this), but since it's trending on here today, here are some guidelines for how one could fight a better COIN fight in Afghanistan /
1. Don't confuse democracy and modern bureaucracy with legitimate governance. If the villages are fine with tribal feudalism, there is no need to force new governance upon them.
2. Related- don't try to fight the extra fights. Will you suddenly create a modern society where women have equal rights and access to education everywhere in the country? Nope. And it's pointless to waste effort trying. Protect human rights, but don't expect sudden change.
3. Don't create an Afghan army that looks like the US Army. We are designed to be expeditionary. We don't need an ANA that is. So burdening them with financial and maintenance requirements they can't sustain is counterproductive
4. Not every part of Afghanistan needs to be completely under the thumb of Kabul. If Nuristanis want to be the weird hillbillies that are violent to outsiders, then let them.
5. Work with the natural, existing sources of local power. Don't recreate alternative, and potentially illegitimate sources of security/ control
6. Don't spend 700m a year fighting to eradicate a crop worth 1B annually.
7. Recognize you can't literally kill all the Taliban, nor can you discount their influence in many parts of the country. There has to be recognition of reintegration into a coalition government. Even the Brits brought Sinn Fein into the fold.

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More from @mikenelson586

7 Jun
Re: whether combat focused basic soldier skills are relevant to all soldiers.

People seem to think that because they can draw on their experiences for how we have fought for 20 years that means we can predict how we will, or even how we are designed, to fight. /
In OEF/ OIF, outside of the invasion, Soldiers at BDE and BN level, outside of key leaders, often didn't move locations, come in contact with the enemy, or leave hardened bases. That's not to shame their service- its just pointing out the nature of how formations were used/
In the recent wars. But in large scale Maneuver warfare, these formations will be moving to keep up with advances, repositioning to avoid enemy detection, taking casualties from enemy air and indirect, moving and treating said casualties. We think of "react to indirect" as /
Read 8 tweets
15 Jun 19
I know you and @MZHemingway think this is a particularly clever talking point, but you're either incredibly dishonest or morons (or both, they don't have to be mutually exclusive)

Ok... here we go/
What was alleged against the Trump campaign is that they directly or indirectly, wittingly or unwittingly, received information or assistance via representatives, Intel orgs, and operations directed BY THE RUSSIAN GOVERNMENT
The Mueller report reaffirms the IC's conclusion that the Russian govt, largely through GRU and hacker proxies, DID engage in an operation to interfere with and influence our elections
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