Murphy’s Law: 21st Century War, How It Will Be Different And Why

Marine Corps RQ-7B Shadow unmanned aerial vehi...

Marine Corps RQ-7B Shadow unmanned aerial vehicle launches from Speedbag Airfield (Photo credit: Official U.S. Navy Imagery)

January 24, 2014: The wars in Afghanistan and Iraq were different in a lot of ways many people didn’t expect, understand, or even notice. For example, the three week conquest of Iraq was not facilitated so much by high tech weapons, but largely by Cold War era gear using World War II tactics. The most crucial weapons were the decades old M-1 tank and M-2 infantry vehicle, with the 1960s vintage M-109 self-propelled artillery provided most of the artillery support. The 1950s era B-52 bomber was still the most cost effective way to deliver bomb attacks.

And what was so unique about conquering Iraq in three weeks while outnumbered? The British did this in 1941, using only two divisions under similar circumstances (and with far fewer armored vehicles). Not only that, the 1941 Iraqis also had the support of Germany, France and Russia. Made no difference.  Afghanistan featured a handful of American Special Forces troops calling in air strikes while deep in enemy territory. That was standard practice during the 1960s Vietnam War. But change is in the air, it’s just a bit more complex a wave of change than most pundits are trying to describe.

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Security expert sees possible Iran threat

By MOBIN PANDIT

DOHA: Subjected to military action, Iran could attack the oil installations of Arab Gulf states, says a well-known GCC security expert.

After “failing to provide conditions” that would have made the Istanbul meet a success, Tehran is most likely going ahead with uranium-enrichment plans, says Dr Sami Alfaraj, head of Kuwait-based Center for Strategic Studies.

Alfaraj, who was here on a brief visit, told The Peninsula in an interview that considering the above developments the threat of Iran sponsoring ‘proactive cells’ in the region to hit its energy facilities was real.

He argued that since Iran attacked one of Kuwait’s offshore oil facilities during its war with Iraq (1986-89), its motives vis-à-vis GCC oil facilities were suspect because the leadership that was in the saddle in Tehran at the time is still in control.

The Gulf region is not where locals alone live. Millions of expatriates drawing from as many as 202 nationalities are based here. “All are, therefore, equal stakeholders in peace and stability of the region,” he said.

So expatriates’ view that is the ‘GCC versus Iran’ and not ‘us versus Iran’ needs to be corrected, he suggested. “If a bomb is dropped anywhere in the region, it wouldn’t differentiate between locals and foreigners.” Continue reading