Contemporary Operating Environment

The surprising way groups like ISIS stay in power

By Claire Von Wald May 16, 2019

TED is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organisation, whose objective is to make great ideas accessible and spark conversation. Here at The Cove, we aim to ignite discussion as well.

This TED Talk from Benedetta Berti discusses non-state armed groups, and what they do when they’re not fighting. She outlines that, in addition to ‘military’ functions, these groups establish political parties, social service networks, media networks, and fundraising organisations – traditionally state-based activities. As a result there are states, non-state actors and ‘in-betweens’, and the delineation is blurred.

Have a listen to ‘The surprising way groups like ISIS stay in power’. Some questions you may wish to ponder include:

  • What do these considerations mean for military operations against such groups?
  • How important are the non-military components of the solution?
  • What does this mean for inter-agency activities?  



Claire Von Wald

Claire Von Wald is a researcher who served for 27 years in the Australian Army. She is currently working towards a doctorate in Public Leadership at the University of New South Wales. 

The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the position of the Australian Army, the Department of Defence or the Australian Government.


Oooh that's mentioned in 'Teaming' 'good to see it getting some more air time even though its a bit dated now, still very relevant

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