Publications

  • 2022
    ESOC Working Paper Series

    On August 15, 2021, a spokesperson of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, the Taliban’s self-
    proclaimed state, declared on Twitter: “With the help of God, and the support of the nation, we are now in control of all parts of the country. We would like to congratulate our nation on this
    big achievement.” After 20 years of conflict with U.S. and NATO coalition forces, no one
    predicted the speed with which the Taliban would consolidate power and precipitate the collapse
    of the Afghan government and military.

  • 2022
    ESOC Working Paper Series

    The world faces a forcible displacement crisis. Across the world, tens of millions of individuals have been
    forced from their homes and across international boundaries. The causes and consequences of refugee
    flows are, therefore, the subjects of significant social science inquiry.

  • 2022
    International Crisis Group

    Yemen is a country of about 30 million people. It occupies the southwestern tip of the Arabian Peninsula and borders Saudi Arabia, Oman, and the shipping lanes of the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden.

  • 2022
    International Crisis Group

    Climate fragility afflicts more and more countries in the world today. Flood and drought, as well as changes in multi-year and seasonal variability, have become major risk factors.

  • 2022
    International Crisis Group

    Yemen is caught up in overlapping emergencies that have defied mediation. In the north, bloody battles rage for control of Marib governorate between the internationally recognised government of Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi and the Huthi rebels who ousted him in 2015. Hadi’s government prevents fuel from entering the Huthi-held port of Hodeida, and a tug of war over the riyal, Yemen’s currency, has led to its collapse in nominally government-controlled cities. 

  • 2021
    Political Violence At A Glance

    Among its many deleterious effects on social well-being, violent conflict—including widespread criminal violence—can undermine economies by…

  • 2021
    ESOC Working Paper Series

    Anti-personnel landmines are one of the main causes of civilian victimization in conflict-affected
    areas and a significant obstacle for post-war reconstruction. Demining campaigns are therefore a
    promising policy instrument to promote long-term development.

  • 2021
    Lawfare

    The Wall Street Journal’s Facebook Files series resumed last week, revealing that the platform took action against an online campaign to set up a new right-wing “Patriot Party” after the Jan. 6 insurrection. Earlier this month news outlets reported that a number of former employees excoriated the company’s content moderation practices in their departure emails. 

  • 2021
    International Crisis Group

    As Nicolás Maduro forces dissidents to flee Venezuela, exiles have come to play important roles influencing both the opposition’s political strategy and international policy toward Caracas. Analysis of social media suggests that exile can lead opposition members to use strident rhetoric and advocate aggressive ideas more often than domestic counterparts.

  • 2021
    International Crisis Group

    Africa is especially vulnerable to climate change, as millions are already experiencing record heat, extreme precipitation and rising sea levels. Increasingly, the security implications of changing weather patterns are visible in deadly land resource disputes between farmers and herders across the continent – including in the continent’s most populous country, Nigeria.

  • 2021
    International Crisis Group

    Colombia’s vast forest is fast receding, partly because guerrillas and criminals are clearing land for farming, ranching and other pursuits. These unregulated activities are causing both dire environmental harm and deadly conflict. Bogotá should take urgent steps to halt the damage.

  • 2021
    Modern War Institute

    In the past twenty years, during the US-led post-9/11 wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, a million members of the National Guard have deployed to those two combat zones. Throughout that period, soldiers and airmen from the Army and Air National Guard have also played a vital role in responding to a remarkably wide range of emergencies at home, from wildfires and hurricanes to the COVID-19 pandemic. Those dual missions—serving both as a key source of combat capability for the joint force and as a resource in times of need in American communities—set the National Guard apart as a military force. But that isn’t the Guard’s only fundamentally unique quality.

  • 2021
    Modern War Institute

    In this episode of MWI’s Urban Warfare Project Podcast, John Spencer is joined by retired Brig. Gen. Yom Tov Tamir. He served a long career in the Israel Defense Forces as an armor officer holding positions from tank commander to division commander. During the Yom Kippur War in 1973, he commanded the 9th Armor Battalion, 14th Armored Brigade.

  • 2021
    Modern War Institute

    When information can travel globally at the tap of a finger, irregular warfare professionals must contend with an ever-changing environment. How does strategic messaging tie into operations on the battlefield? How can we build a more information-savvy force? And how can information act as both weapon and warfighting space?

  • 2021
    Modern War Institute

    What lessons should the United States military take from twenty years of war in Afghanistan? Episode 35 of the Irregular Warfare Podcast focuses on US efforts in the Pech valley, where the United States waged an enduring counterinsurgency and counterterrorism campaign over many years. Though the conversation focuses on this valley, our guests argue that the Pech represents a microcosm of the broader US war effort in Afghanistan, and that the collapse of the Afghan government following the withdrawal of US forces from the country in August 2021 was foreseeable by looking at what happened in the Pech valley after US forces withdrew years earlier.

  • 2021
    Modern War Institute

    How does China operate in the space between war and peace to gain strategic advantage in Asia and globally? What do these gray zone activities look like, and how do they facilitate China’s influence in the region? What are the consequences of inconsistent US policy and posture in the Pacific in countering China’s rise?

  • 2021
    Modern War Institute

    The United States and other nations have spent billions of dollars and invested untold effort, not to mention lives, in a global campaign against Islamist terrorism—and yet the threat landscape is arguably worse now than it was on 9/11.

  • 2021
    ESOC Working Paper Series

    We consider how the U.S. news media reports on international affairs. Analyzing ≈40 million
    news articles published between 2010 and 2020, we explore whether the American news media
    report differently on various international affairs topics based on partisan leanings. We then
    analyze ≈25 million articles published by top online news sites to determine whether collective
    reporting shows disparities between the level of attention afforded major global issues and
    objective measures of their human costs (e.g. numbers of individuals killed).

  • 2021
    Modern War Institute

    The US military and its allies are faced with the challenges of shifting focus toward great power competition while still maintaining the ability to counter threats on the fringes. Where does irregular warfare fit in this new strategic landscape?

  • 2021
    Modern War Institute

    US Army Special Forces units continued to quietly operate in Afghanistan when conventional troops withdrew around 2015. These soldiers have worked closely with Afghan commandos and government partners to hold the hard-won and fragile stability. What happens when they leave the country this summer? How has this war continued unnoticed by the American people and what was the role of the media, the military, and policymakers in building a better public awareness of ongoing operations in Afghanistan?