Impunity: Countering Illicit Power In War And Transition

Impunity: Countering Illicit Power In War And Transition
Impunity: Countering Illicit Power in War and Transition
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This comprehensive resource offers multiple chapters with different authoritative authors/contributors to present case studies highlighting a historical perspective about international organizations that embrace armed conflict and use of violence to disrupt rule of law. These chapters showcase different areas around the world impacted by the illicit power forces to include:

  • Afghanistan
  • Iraq
  • Haiti
  • Liberia
  • Philippines
  • and more

The second portion highlights chapters that focus on methods to better understand these groups and to thwart their efforts. You will learn how following money and sanctions, as well as the role that social media and new technology plays, into the intelligence gathering. It also reveals some reform strategies and tactics that can be used for future military strategists. International relations scholars, intelligence community, and foreign policy advocates may benefit from these lessons.

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Table of Contents




PART 1: Case Studies from Conflict

CHAPTER 1 Criminal Patronage Networks and the Struggle to Rebuild the Afghan State. 11  

CHAPTER 2 Jaish al-Mahdi in Iraq 40  

CHAPTER 3 Haiti: The Gangs of Cité Soleil 67   

CHAPTER 4 Liberia: Durable Illicit Power Structures 99   

CHAPTER 5 Traffickers and Truckers: Illicit Afghan and Pakistani Power Structures with a Shadowy but Influential Role 125  

CHAPTER 6 Colombia and the FARC: From Military Victory to Ambivalent Political Reintegration?  150                                                                                                                                                                                                                          CHAPTER 7 The Philippines: The Moro Islamic Liberation Front - A Pragmatic Power Structure? 170  

CHAPTER 8 Sierra Leone: The Revolutionary United Front 190  

CHAPTER 9 Sri Lanka: State Response to the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam as an Illicit Power Structure 217   

Part 2: Confronting Illicit Power – Understanding Enablers, Ours and Theirs

CHAPTER 10 It Takes a Thief to Catch a Thief: Illicit Power and the Intelligence Challenge 241  

CHAPTER 11 Weapons Trafficking and the Odessa Network: How One Small Think Tank was Able to Unpack One Very Big Problem, and the Lessons It Teaches Us 267 

CHAPTER 12 Financial Tools and Sanctions: Following the Money and the Joumaa Web. 289  

CHAPTER 13 Recruitment and Radicalization: The Role of Social Media and New Technology 313  

Part 3: Licit Transitions – Building Institutions and Strengthening Capacity for Success

CHAPTER 14 Make It Matter: Ten Rules for Institutional Development that Works 331  

CHAPTER 15 The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Intelligence-Led Policing 341   

CHAPTER 16 Security Sector Reconstruction in Post-Conflict: The Lessons from Timor-Leste 347  

CHAPTER 17 A Granular Approach to Combating Corruption and Illicit Power Structures 367   

CONCLUSION: What Should We Have Learned by Now? Enduring Lessons from Thirty Years of Conflict and Transition 377  



Department of Defense and associated federal agencies’ military strategists, policy analysts, command operational personnel, plus university level professors, instructors, and political science scholars may be interested in this subject area.  Students pursuing research for courses related to international relations, cyber-defense, military science, and Third World political, and socio-economic conditions may also be interested in this work.

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Defense Dept., National Defense University, Center for Complex Operations
  • Hughes, Michelle
Key Phrases:
  • Internationasl Relations
  • Non State Actors
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