Accession Number:

ADA503752

Title:

Radical Islamist Ideologies and the Long War: Implications for U.S. Strategic Planning and U.S. Central Command's Operations

Descriptive Note:

Monograph

Corporate Author:

INSTITUTE FOR FOREIGN POLICY ANALYSIS INC WASHINGTON DC

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:

2007-01-01

Pagination or Media Count:

78.0

Abstract:

The United States is engaged in a struggle against violent extremists who use a selective interpretation of Islam and Muslim grievances as a cover for their pursuit of political power and global influence. For most Americans, the events of recent years, including the attacks of September 11, 2001, were horrific, but, with the passage of time, largely unrelated to the ebb and flow of their daily lives. The radical extremists are counting on Americans to let their guard down, and to succumb to political pressures to withdraw U.S. forces precipitously from Iraq in the face of mounting U.S. casualties, while turning a blind eye to the proliferation of al-Qaeda cells in Europe, Asia, the wider Middle East, Africa, and even in North and South America. Geographically, Iraq and, to a lesser extent, Afghanistan and Somalia, have become the central theaters of operation for the new jihadists, but this is a global struggle for hearts and minds, one that is being waged over the Internet and directly within Western countries, exploiting the disaffection of Muslim youth and the failure of Western nations to integrate successfully immigrant Muslim communities into the fabric of their societies. It is also an internal struggle within Islam, pitting those who espouse a particular orthodoxy against those who seek a reformation of Islam. The monograph is divided into the following sections I. Introduction The Long War II. Core Themes of the Islamist Ideology and Opportunities to Leverage Divisions Among Muslim Populations III. The New Face of Warfare Asymmetric Strategies, Irregular Tactics, and Insurgency Operations IV. Strategic and Operational Implications for the United States Essential Elements of a New National Strategy and V. Recommendations for the Way Ahead.

Subject Categories:

  • Government and Political Science
  • Unconventional Warfare

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE