Tribes, Tribes, Tribes. Remember that. Tribes.

This is still a tribal world. Tribes are the center of gravity in every Islamist Insurgency in the world. The Islamists may be Middle Class Radicals, but they can only fight wars where the tribes support them. Where there is no tribal support, the Islamists resort to militarily useless terrorist attacks.

If we turn the tribes against the Islamists, they lose the war. This is the case in Iraq, in Waziristan, in Afghanistan, in Somalia, and the other 25 someodd fronts at any point in time. In places like Pakistan, the government has to turn the tribes against the Taliban. Random US Airstrikes against “al-Qaeda” will flip the tribes into the Taliban camp and make things much worse.

Our focal point of effort and attention must be on the tribes at all times. All other action occurs at the margins and is less relevant. Don’t get distracted.