James P.

James P. Farwell

James P Farwell is an expert in strategic communication and information operations who has advised the US Special Operations Command, the US Strategic Command and the Department of Defense on counterterrorism and counterinsurgency in the Middle East, North Africa and Pakistan. He has written articles for the International Institute for Strategic Studies, the Middle East Institute, Defence IQ, and the IO Journal. He is an attorney with degrees from Tulane and the University of Cambridge, and also a political consultant who has worked nationally and internationally at the presidential level. He lives in New Orleans.

He is also the author of the recently published book, ‘The Pakistan Cauldron’

The assault on Osama bin Laden spotlighted Pakistan’s unpredictable political dynamics, in which betrayal, paranoia and conspiracy feature prominently. Understanding Pakistani politics is crucial to working with this challenging American ally. As Benazir Bhutto often stated, there is “always the story behind the story,” and James Farwell tells it clearly in The Pakistan Cauldron.

Three crucial messages should guide America's fight against ISIS, reports national security expert James P. Farwell. As battles wage in the Middle East, are governments investing as much in information as they are in kinetic operations? Countering extremist propaganda through targeted digital outreach and social media activity are key themes...Full Article »
There had never been a scene like it as the curtains opened at the Cairo Opera House. A packed house had come to see a performance of AIDA. Instead, they were greeted by workers and artists crowded on-stage....Full Article »
Arriving on military helicopters, aided by night vision cameras, the attackers opened up on their victims with AK-47s. It was a massacre. The photograph is heart-wrenching and tragic. It is of elephant carcasses, 86 of which slaughtered in Chad a few weeks ago. The horn and tusk trade is merely one element of a broader scope of intertwined illegal...Full Article »
Those seeing the human tragedy unfolding in Syria with a heart full of hell, ready to jump in, stop the bloodshed, and deliver Bashar Al-Assad a knock-out punch might do well to recall a telling anecdote from journalist Dexter Filkins from his days in Iraq. In 2003, with tensions running high, a car carrying Filkins got stuck in a hole. Luckily,...Full Article »
Tags: Syria|IO
Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi is astonishing observers. He’s thrown everyone off balance. He’s full of surprises. His secret? He makes so many blunders, it’s impossible to know which one he’ll make next. Sadly, his actions – driven by authoritarian impulse and orders from his Muslim Brotherhood masters – are...Full Article »
As the Academy Award-winning film Argo excites people with the story of its dramatic rescue of a handful of Americans trapped in Tehran after Iranian students and militants seized the U.S. embassy, it's well to recall a failed mission to rescue the other 52 hostages held there for 444 days. But for President Jimmy Carter's failure to...Full Article »
Buoyed by the loyalty of his Alawite community, Bashar al-Assad has acted ruthlessly to crush dissent in Syria. His brutality has outraged the international community, but that has not deterred Assad. And the worst may lie ahead. Will Assad employ his weapons of mass destruction to quell dissent? And what will happen to his WMD arsenal should...Full Article »
Tags: information
Libyans are rising up in hopes of ousting a notorious despot while facing threats of massacre and, in the wake of Arab League and United Nations action to prevent that, military action should be complemented by a strong strategic communication campaign to divide Muammar al-Gadhafi from his key supporters. Gadhafi often behaves irrationally....Full Article »
Tags: Libya|Gadhafi|IO
Marc Sageman has observed that, in Europe, political violence reflects a rebellion against both western society and - in the belief that they, themselves, fall short - peaceful counter-cultures of protest. One thing’s for sure: political violence can polarise, fragment and undercut democracy. Combatting radicalism Fears that...Full Article »
SACEUR, US Navy Admiral James Stavridis, has pointed out, rightly, that collective security in Europe requires a comprehensive approach that looks beyond combat operations. NATO’s mission aims to mitigate risks, as he astutely puts it, "at the geographic periphery of the Alliance and well beyond". Yet, protecting the sovereignty of...Full Article »