In Finland last month I gave a presentation on Law, violence and b/ordering, in which I began by making two preliminary points about border crossings and (para)military violence: trans-border incursions and transgressions have been facilitated by (i) new stealth technologies deployed by state actors and (ii) the rise of new non-state and para-state actors. Here are the relevant slides:
I derived the map showing the advance of IS(IS)/ISIL from the Institute for the Study of War; say what you like about their politics (this is the Kagans we are talking about), their maps and summaries are extremely helpful.
Now Public Intelligence has just published a series of (unclassified) maps of Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Jordan produced by the Humanitarian Information Unit of the US State Department called Conflicts Without Borders:
‘Conflicts Without Borders refers to a conflict in one country that draws in other governments and non-state actors, exacerbates stresses and conflicts in the neighbouring countries, and generates displacement across borders.’
That’s a definition to think about; there are obvious ironies in the US offering a definition that I suspect is intended to exclude its own part in initiating conflicts (if so, it doesn’t work), and there is the interesting attribution of causal powers to conflicts (which ‘draw in’ other actors like so many black holes).
This map series is dated 9 October 2014; the maps provide a Regional Overview (the first map below) and then show Northern Syria and Turkey, Western Syria and Lebanon, Southern Syria and Jordan and Eastern Syria and Iraq (the second map below).
You can access a single summary map for late June here (shown below):