The Aftermath of Another Affront

by Chris Lundry (with R. Bennett Furlow) It did not take long for the images of the US Marines urinating on corpses of Taliban fighters to go viral. A moment of lapsed judgment will circulate as long as anyone is interested in seeing it, certainly long after short attention spans move on to other things and the fallout – including, presumably, disciplinary actions for the soldiers – settles. Predictably, extremist sites have been all over […] Read more »

New Volume on Countering Violent Extremism

by Steven R. Corman NSI has just released a new edited volume (PDF here) that should be of interest to COMOPS Journal readers.  Entitled Countering Violent Extremism: Scientific Methods and Strategies, it contains the latest thinking on the subject, including a chapter on narrative by yours truly.  The contents are listed below. Foreword (Brig. Gen. John N.T. “Jack” Shanahan) Preface (Diane DiEuiliis) Executive Summary (Laurie Fenstermacher) Section 1: Current Insights into Violent Extremism Not All […] Read more »

Implicit Master Narratives in Extremist Website Launch

by Jeffry R. Halverson If you’ve read our book Master Narratives of Islamist Extremism then you already have a solid understanding of the major master narratives employed by Islamist extremists in their communications. For example, you’re able to recognize the significance of a Pharaoh reference when an extremist is condemning a world leader. Or you’re able to see the apocalyptic scheme articulated in Ahmadinejad’s praise of the “Lord of the Age” (which is not a […] Read more »

Out of Their Heads and Into Their Conversation: Countering Extremist Ideology

by Angela Trethewey, Steven R. Corman & Bud Goodall Ideology is often ignored or deemed irrelevant to strategic communication because it is an old, possibly leftist, idea that is associated with academic social critique. It is treated as something that lives in the heads of individuals, driving them to radical action. From this point of view the concept is not really practical because by the time someone has adopted an ideology, it is too late. […] Read more »