John Goekler applies the science of Complex Adaptive Systems to exploring issues like global security, governance, educational transformation and organizational effectiveness. He lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico.


Memo to US — You’ve Been Out-Adapted. Go Home!

The U.S. is unable to adapt to the Taliban’s ability to adapt.

Is There a Method to Israel’s Settlement Madness?

How Israel can walk back settlements yet save face.

Q. So What Are You Fighting For? A. Ah’m Fightin’ Cause Yore Here

To insurgents, invasion will always trump ideology as the reason they resist.

In Today’s Open-Source World, Low-Tech Attacks by “Other Guys” Rule

Behold the lowly caltrop — it’s ROI is off the charts.

Rio Rumbles

Crime syndicates and militias need to provide benefits to communities to survive.

Fireground Rules, Part 2: A Scheme is Not a Vision

Wildfires, like conflicts between states, are fast, dynamic and fierce.

Fireground Rules, Part 1: When in Doubt, Cease and Desist

The definition of insanity applied to foreign policy.

The Passing of the State, Part 47 — It’s Not Just the Talib, Folks

Gangs, tribes, and sects — aka, Other Guys — only have to not lose to win wars.

The Wikileaks Release: Smile, You’re on YouTube!

Stewart Brand said, “Information wants to be free.” Only politicians believe they can contain it.

Dinosaurs Can’t Dance: The Impending Extinction of the Nation-State

The dinosaur of the nation-state is headed towards the tar pits.

What to Do About Somalia

It’s time to accentuate the positive with Somalia.

What Barry Should Say to Bibi

After over 60 years of friendship, Israel — of its own volition and through its own actions — has become an economic and security liability to the US.

Afghanistan by the Book — THE Book, That Is

Why not hold Gen. Petraeus’s performance in Afghanistan to the standards of his seminal work on counterinsurgency, Field Manual 3-24?


In the security biz, so-called “black swans” blindside you and maybe even inflict a career-ending injury.

Leave Afghanistan and Declare bin Laden Dead in One Fell Swoop

It will likely be far more dangerous politically for Obama NOT to bring the boys home quickly than to “win” the war.

Question: Will Lithium Be Good For Afghanistan?

The prospect of mineral wealth in Afghanistan may be the worst thing that could happen to it.

The Future Isn’t What It Used To Be

A crash course on complexity science as seen through the lens of Israel.

Israel: When You Circle the Wagons, Shoot Outward!

Israel as we know it, will cease to exist in the foreseeable future.

Hello, Has Anybody Seen Our Idea of Governance in Afghanistan?

Afghanistan is a landscape of “sink holes” into which our idea of governance has fallen.

    Are Nations Going Extinct?

    AlterNet | July 29, 2010