Center for Strategic Communication

The Cockroaches of War. And of Jihad

[by Mark Safranski, a.k.a “zen”] John Robb had a cool post on the ultra-radical takfiri insurgency ISIS/ISIL and their self-proclaimed Sunni “Caliphate“, the Islamic State, whom he gave as an example of “the cockroaches of war”:...

REVIEW: The Orientalist by Tom Reiss

[by Mark Safranski, a.k.a. “zen”] The Orientalist by Tom Reiss  Some biographies are as much about the era or the milieu as the man. The Orientalist is one of them. This is not to say that Tom Reiss has written a bad book. On the contrary, it is an...

REVIEW: American Spartan by Ann Scott Tyson

[by Mark Safranski, a.k.a. “zen’] American Spartan: The Promise, the Mission, and the Betrayal of Special Forces Major Jim Gant by Ann Scott Tyson  When I first posted that I had received a review copy of American Spartan from Callie, it stirred a vigorous...

Recommended Readings, hipbone version

[ by Charles Cameron — Andrew Bacevich on the “religion” lesson, with Tim Furnish on the eschatology of the “caliphate” as a chaser ] . Here’s Andrew Bacevich with a provocative piece titled Lessons from America’s War for the...

Nomenclature, ISIS and beyond

[ by Charles Cameron — accuracy in naming, and the potentially dire consequences of theological insults ] . On February 3rd, Hassan Hassan, a columnist for the English daily The National in the UAE, wrote a piece titled Five Reasons Why It Is Stupid To Say ISIL...