Supplemental reading list for the Osher Institute short course on the Islamic State and Modern Insurgency.
- Pischedda, Constantino. 2015. “A provocative article says the Islamic State is a mystery. Here’s why that’s wrong.” The Monkey Cage. https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/monkey-cage/wp/2015/08/27/the-islamic-state-is-no-mystery/
- Wood, Graeme. 2015. “What ISIS really wants.” The Atlantic. http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2015/03/what-isis-really-wants/384980/
- McCants, William. 2015. “The believer: How an introvert with a passion for religion and soccer became Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi Leader of the Islamic State.” The Brookings Essay. http://www.brookings.edu/research/essays/2015/thebeliever
- Ingram, Haroro. 2015. “What analysis of the Islamic State’s messaging keeps missing.” The Monkey Cage. https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/monkey-cage/wp/2015/10/14/what-analysis-of-the-islamic-states-messaging-keeps-missing/
- Wilson, Lydia. 2015. “What I discovered from interviewing imprisoned ISIS fighters.” The Nation. http://www.thenation.com/article/what-i-discovered-from-interviewing-isis-prisoners/
- Regan, Patrick. 2009. Sixteen Million One: Understanding Civil War http://www.amazon.com/Sixteen-Million-One-Understanding-International/dp/1594516200/
This book is a great overview of some of the bigger concepts in political science and international relations as it relates to civil war, rebellion, and insurgency. It mixes some personal experiences and interviews by Regan with contemporary theory.
- Mason, David T. 2004. Caught in the Crossfire: Revolution, Repression, and the Rational Peasant. http://www.amazon.com/Caught-Crossfire-Revolution-Repression-Rational/dp/0742525392/
This book is denser than the Regan book, but does a solid job of going through the existing literature on the major theories of grievances, greed, and opportunity. Mason is mostly looking at peasant revolutions in Latin America and Africa, but the primary topics relate to what we are discussing in the course.
- Vision of Humanity Index, http://www.visionofhumanity.org/#/page/indexes/global-peace-index
- Fragile State Index, http://fsi.fundforpeace.org/
- Liveuamap for Syria and Iraq, http://isis.liveuamap.com/
- Tessler, et al., 2016. “What do ordinary citizens in the Arab world really think about the Islamic State, The Monkey Cage. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/monkey-cage/wp/2016/07/27/what-do-ordinary-citizens-in-the-arab-world-really-think-about-the-islamic-state/
- Raghavan, Sudarsen. 2016. “Inside the brutal but bizarrely bureaucratic world of the Islamic State in Libya”, The Washington Post. https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/murders-taxes-and-a-dmv-how-isis-ruled-its-libyan-stronghold/2016/08/22/2ce3b8f4-5e60-11e6-84c1-6d27287896b5_story.html
- Cronin, Audrey Kurth. 2015. “ISIS is not a terrorist group.” Foreign Affairs. https://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/middle-east/isis-not-terrorist-group
- Podcast: “Auditing ISIS.” Planet Money. http://www.npr.org/sections/money/2015/12/04/458524627/episode-667-auditing-isis
- Fisk, Robert. 2015. “Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers – and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting.” Independent. http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/isis-profits-from-destruction-of-antiquities-by-selling-relics-to-dealers-and-then-blowing-up-the-10483421.html
- Ohl, Dorothy, Kevin Koehler, and Holgar Albrecth. 2015. “The Syrian military has thousands of deserters. New research tells us why they left.” The Monkey Cage. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/monkey-cage/wp/2015/12/17/talking-to-assads-military-deserters/
- Klein, Graig. 2015. “These two reason explain why the Islamic State attacked France now.” The Monkey Cage. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/monkey-cage/wp/2015/11/18/these-two-reasons-explain-why-the-islamic-state-attacked-france-now/
- Pape, Robert. 2006. Dying to Win: The Strategic Logic of Suicide Terrorism. http://www.amazon.com/Dying-Win-Strategic-Suicide-Terrorism/dp/0812973380/
The book explores how suicide terrorism is a strategic act used by groups against particular kinds of opponents, especially democratic occupiers. Until 2003, the group with the highest number of suicide attacks was a secular group in Sri Lanka.
- Weinstein, Jeremy M. 2006. Inside Rebellion: The Politics of Insurgent Violence. http://www.amazon.com/Inside-Rebellion-Insurgent-Cambridge-Comparative/dp/0521677971/
This books examines how and why different kinds of rebel groups employ different tactics despite their seeming similarities.
- Fisher, Max. 2015. “Watch: a 5 minute history of Syria’s war and the rise of ISIS.” Vox. http://www.vox.com/2015/11/14/9735102/syria-isis-history-video
- Ramani, Samuel. 2015. “When he bombs Syria, Putin is sending these four messages to the world.” The Monkey Cage. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/monkey-cage/wp/2015/10/21/when-he-bombs-syria-putin-is-sending-these-four-messages-to-the-world/
- Ahram, Ariel I. 2014. “Can ISIS overcome the insurgency resource curse?” The Monkey Cage. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/monkey-cage/wp/2014/07/02/for-isis-its-oil-and-water/
- Farrell, Henry. 2015. “Censoring ISIS’s online propaganda isn’t working out very well.” The Monkey Cage. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/monkey-cage/wp/2015/06/18/censoring-isiss-online-propaganda-isnt-working-out-very-well/
- Shaver, Andrew and Gabriel Tenorio. 2014. “Want to defeat ISIS in IRaq? More electricity would help.” The Monkey Cage. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/monkey-cage/wp/2014/06/19/want-to-defeat-isis-in-iraq-more-electricity-would-help/
- Beehner, Lionel. 2014. “What the evidence on interventions really tells us about Syria.” The Monkey Cage. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/monkey-cage/wp/2014/08/18/what-the-evidence-on-interventions-really-tells-us-about-syria/
- Paul, Christopher, and Colin P. Clark. 2014. “A broad approach to countering the Islamic State.” The Monkey Cage. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/monkey-cage/wp/2014/09/02/a-broad-approach-to-countering-the-islamic-state/
- Schrad, Mark Lawrence. 2014. “Ukraine and ISIS are not justifications of a `clash of civilizations.”’ The Monkey Cage. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/monkey-cage/wp/2014/09/22/ukraine-and-isis-are-not-justifications-of-a-clash-of-civilizations/
- Kilcullen, David. 2010. Counterinsurgency. New York: Oxford University Press. http://www.amazon.com/Counterinsurgency-David-Kilcullen/dp/0199737495/
A book written as a guide for various militaries, especially the United States, as how to conduct effective counter-insurgency. Kilcullen served in the Australian army in counter-insurgency and peacekeeping operations in Southeast Asia and the Middle East as well as worked as the Chief Strategist in the Office of the Coordinator for Counterterrorism at the US State Department.
- Regan, Patrick M. 2002. Civil wars and foreign powers: Outside intervention in intrastate conflict. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press. http://www.amazon.com/Civil-Wars-Foreign-Powers-Intervention/dp/0472088769/
This is an academic and quantitative treatment of how interventions affect civil war. This may be a dense reading, but it is one of the early, comprehensive studies that examines the real consequences of outside intervention on civil war duration. This is a generalist approach, but provides foundation to thinking about US and other states’ interventions globally.