Modern Political Warfare – RAND (2018)

Modern Political Warfare - RAND Corporation - April 2018

RAND Corporation has published a 355-page paper entitled Modern Political Warfare : Current Practices and Possible Responses (April 2018). Those readers in the special operations community will recognized the names of many of the co-authors of this paper: Linda Robinson, Todd C. Helmus, Raphael Cohen, and several others.

This study examines political warfare as practiced today by nations and nonstate actors. The research was sponsored by the U.S. Army Special Operations Command (USASOC) G-9. The contents of the paper are listed below by chapter.

Chapter 1 – Introduction
Chapter 2 – History of U.S. Political Warfare
Chapter 3 – Case Study: Russia
Chapter 4 – Case Study: Iran
Chapter 5 – Case Study ISIL
Chapter 6 – Attributes of Modern Political Warfare
Chapter 7 – Influence Communications Lessons for the United States
Chapter 8 – Effective Statecraft and Integration of Measures Short of War
Chapter 9 – Conclusion

This paper is a good read for those in the SOF community. Chapter 8 provides eight recommendations for the U.S. military and U.S. special operations forces (SOF) in particular as they provide many of the capabilities used in political warfare.


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