By Alan C. Cunningham
Regime Change is a topic that generates much discussion in the United States. While most military operations do not begin with the stated goal of overthrowing one’s government, many of those combat operations have the effect of changing a foreign nation’s form of governance. Regime change is defined as “the overthrow of a government considered illegitimate by an external force and its replacement with a new government according to the ideas or interests promoted by that force,”.[i] This type of activity can be performed through regular military and covert operations or come in the form of diplomatic, economic, and political actions. Often, military operations and covert tactics are utilized extensively in certain cases to try and bring about serious change in a foreign land.[ii] Despite the long history of taking on these types of military operations[iii], the U.S. still fails to execute them properly.[iv]
Most operations have short-term success and long-term destabilization of a country overall, as well as, when considering its application by Western powers, promotes an anti-Western narrative that results in a foreign nation that is antagonistic towards the United States for past abuses. By using case studies of individual operations and missions, one is able to see exactly how regime change missions are often poorly conducted and result in disastrous events occurring in the intervened country. A good way to explore these operations as well is by utilizing the Sand Pile Theory, developed by Per Bak, Chao Tang, and Kurt Wiesenfeld.
The Sand Pile Theory and the Definition of Regime Change
The Sand Pile Theory (also called the BTW Experiment) was first theorized by Dr. Per Bak, a Danish theoretical physicist, in the 1980s as a way of understanding how various fields of science (physics, biology, mathematics) experience complexity, further expanding upon this theory in a 1996 book which “extended the concept beyond simple sand piles to other complex systems: earthquakes, financial markets [etc.],”.[v] Naturally, these principles and the theory overall have extreme benefits in learning about the national security structure of the United States and other nation-states.
The sand pile theory is described as, “[imagining] a sand pile formed by dropping grains of sand onto a flat surface and observing the pattern of landslides that inevitably occurred. As the grains of sand accumulate, the angle of repose of the cone-shaped pile increases until reaching a tipping point. Sections of the sand pile would then cascade down the side of the cone, and then the process of buildup and collapse would repeat…When a sand pile reaches a critical state, the addition of a single grain of sand may lead to avalanches of unpredictable size – even extreme avalanches that completely destroy the sand pile,”.[vi]
These grains of sand, too, are instances of instability or some factor that, normally, would not be cause for massive geopolitical change, but are in these instances when a system is under stress. This theory is immensely helpful in determining how regime change operations are planned and executed in addition to determining how successful they are.
To better understand regime change operations, though, the best tactic is to explore military and covert operations that had the express goal of removing a foreign government from power, determining just how the Sand Pile Theory applies and where exactly the grain of sand tipped to cascade and resulted in disastrous consequences for the populace and surrounding region in addition to causing more problems for the United States government. To do this, I will be exploring U.S. intervention in Cuba during the early 20th century (following the 1898 Spanish-American War), the Korean War of the 1950s, and U.S. efforts to change the country of Somalia in the early 1990s. These cases are reflective of U.S. military action in various corners of the globe (Latin American, Asia, and Africa) and all hold forms of covert action and regular military, direct action tactics in reformulating a regime.
U.S. Intervention in Cuba (1898-1959)
America has long been involved in the internal affairs of Cuba. This began in 1898 with the beginnings of the Spanish-American War. Cuba had been a Spanish colony since 1510 and endured years of strife, subjected to Spanish slavery and repression while also trying multiple times to gain their freedoms in the 1800s.[vii] America had long been eyeing Cuba and desired to take hold of the island, becoming more resentful of the Spanish empire as the 1800s progressed.[viii] Eventually, in 1898, tensions boiled over with the sinking of the U.S.S. Maine, an American battleship, killing, “more than 250 of the Maine’s 355 sailors and officers,”.[ix] The public almost automatically believed that the Maine was sunk by either Spanish or Cuban personnel and a U.S. Navy investigation confirmed this (though a more thorough, 1976 investigation found problems with this theory[x]). The end result was war between the U.S. and Spain, with the United States gaining the upper hand in a period of two weeks of actual combat.[xi]
The end result was that an American occupation was put in place, a brutal military dictatorship under the command of Gen. Leonard Wood, and was marked by disease, racism, and famine.[xii] Eventually, the U.S. passed the Platt Amendment in 1903 which provided the United States, “the right to intervene for the preservation of Cuban independence, the maintenance of a government adequate for the protection of life, property and individual liberty,”[xiii] and essentially, “represented a considerable abridgement of Cuban sovereignty,”.[xiv] The military dictatorship ended and was replaced with a puppet government under the control of a series of American backed leaders, each of whom was either corrupt or marred by scandals[xv] and had to deal with rebellions and insurrections that required the American military to reassert their power.[xvi]
In the mid-1930s, Fulgencio Batista, a Sergeant (and later General) in the Cuban military, staged a coup (with U.S. support) and removed the dictatorship then in power before eventually being elected president in 1940 after ruling for a time with puppet administrations.[xvii] His first rule has been described as that of a democratic-socialist and he found support from left-wing members of Cuban society. Upon leaving office in 1944, however, his successors became more repressive and corrupt.[xviii] Taking power again in 1952, his second term as President was more like his successor’s terms, Batista ruling with an iron fist, “controlling [education], the press, and the Congress and he embezzled huge sums from the soaring economy,”[xix] along with executing “thousands of political opponents,”.[xx] This in turn sparked numerous resentments and upsets amongst the Cuban public who, eventually, overthrew Batista being led by Fidel Castro, ushering in a Marxist-Leninist Socialist government.[xxi]
The Sand Pile, as one can see, had been building over time for decades. The multiple wars of independence, the atrocities placed upon Cubans by the Spanish Empire, the Americans denying Cubans the right to be their own country, multiple U.S. invasion forces, a largely U.S. controlled economy, and the installation of puppet and U.S.-backed dictators who abused their positions of authority and were highly corrupt all were grains of sand the built up in the minds of many regular Cuban citizens. However, the final grain of sand seems to be a suicide.
Eduardo Chibás was an influential Cuban political commentator, is widely regarded as an honest politician who saw corruption as the largest issue facing Cuba and was both anti-Communist and anti-American imperialism, making it popular nationwide.[xxii] A Senator in addition to having a weekly radio show, he frequently accused public figures of corruption (oftentimes, these were exaggerated or falsified).[xxiii] In one such August 1951 broadcast, he accused the Minister of Education of embezzling funds, yet was unable to prove his claim. The following broadcast, he went live on the radio and made an impassioned plea before shooting himself with a handgun, dying days later and placing Cuba in a state of mourning.[xxiv]
While odd, it appears that Chibás’ death was the final grain of sand that motivated the Cuban populace towards revolution, removing corruption from their public sector, and ridding themselves of dictatorships. It is known that, in the wake of Chibás’ death, Batista (losing in the polls) performed another coup and took control of the country, installing repressive measures.[xxv] This, in turn, solidified in the minds of many young Cuban students (Chibás’ primary demographic), the working class, and Indigenous peoples that significant change was needed. His suicide in some ways can be seen as a call to arms and many historians view Chibás’ death as a turning point in Cuban history.[xxvi] To quote journalist Richard Gott on Chibas’ death, “[this] marked the end of the era [which began with Batista],”.[xxvii]
The growing economic disparity, corruption, and constant interference by foreign powers all had a very large effect on the minds of many Cubans. However, this single incident seems to have radicalized many to the point to take up arms and take their country back for themselves and their citizens, being the first instance in which Cubans expressed resentment towards their government and outside influence. Fidel Castro rarely ever mentioned Eduardo Chibás, however, his writings express an adoration of the man and appears to hold him in high esteem.[xxviii] I would argue that this incident was the final grain of sand which resulted in the cascade that paved the way for the Cuban Revolution and resulted in a dictatorial, U.S.-backed regime becoming a Marxist-Leninist, anti-American regime (which eventually engaged in repressive measures too).
U.S. Intervention in Korea (1950-1953)
The Korean War is often forgotten in American history, largely due to the fact that it was a conflict many Americans did not believe they should be involved in and did not pay close attention to.
The Korean War, much like the U.S. occupation of Cuba, was built upon centuries-old resentments and anger by poorer, lower-class Koreans who were essentially slaves to an elite Korean class, which owned the land.[xxix] This system continued even when the Japanese invaded the peninsula in 1910, “[finding] it useful to operate through local landed power,”.[xxx] The Japanese system was brutal and cruel; due to the partial complicity in its’ creation by Theodore Roosevelt and the United States, many Koreans also viewed the U.S. in a negative light and harbored resentment.[xxxi]
By the time the U.S. defeated the Japanese during the Second World War, many Koreans were divided amongst one another, with poor Koreans disliking elitist Koreans for their collaboration with the Japanese.[xxxii] Because of this, Korea was ideologically split into two, with the Russians controlling the North and the Americans controlling the South in what was supposed to be temporary.[xxxiii] However, the result was that both countries steadfastly took their host nations' points of view, absorbing both anti-Communist/Soviet and anti-Capitalist/American views. In June of 1950, the North Koreans invaded South Korea and began a large scale military operation to make South Korea a part of North Korea, taking serious ground before the U.S. decided to intervene with a full military force a week later, with the goal of preserving democracy in the South.[xxxiv]
Following the successful UN invasion by largely American forces at Inchon and the pushing of North Koreans back behind the 38th Parallel, Gen. Douglas MacArthur, the Commander-in-Chief of United Nations Command, Korea, MacArthur ignored orders to halt and continued on with the assault past the Parallel, desiring to reunify Korea under a democratic government.[xxxv] As these forces advanced, there were reports coming from both regular military units and captured/defected Chinese and North Korean troops that the Chinese were coming en masse into Korea to push back the Americans.[xxxvi] Following the entry of the Chinese into the Korean War, the conflict stagnated and neither side gained a significant advantage, the war coming to a close following both the U.S. and the Soviet Union encouraging the South and North Koreans (respectively) to agree to an armistice in July of 1953.[xxxvii] The country has been at odds ever since and there are no signs of any imminent reconciliation.
The historical factors above were all highly important in understanding how and why the Americans’ attempt at regime change in Korea failed (while the UN never emphasized that reunification by force was a desired aim, it was a goal by high-level U.S. military commanders such as MacArthur). Both sides were too ideologically ingrained with their host nations to be amenable to any form of collaboration with the other and had long histories of hatred amongst one another, along with differing political views. However, the most consequential decision which would lead to the eventual cascade and split between the North and South would be the American intelligence failure in the beginning four months of the war.
Prior to the war, the only intelligence on Korea was coming from MacArthur and his intelligence chief, Brigadier General Charles Willoughby, who were very territorial about their operations and denied the U.S. Navy, U.S. Army, State Department, and recently created CIA to be involved in the intelligence collection process.[xxxviii] These two commanders also both mandated that CIA ask for permission to operate in Korea, severely limiting their ability to collect intelligence and work covertly.[xxxix] Finally, both commanders each had preconceived notions which influenced their views (MacArthur was of the opinion that the Chinese were not a fighting force and had an amateur study of Asia which was heavily biased and racist while Willoughby was a self-described fascist and sycophant to MacArthur).[xl] This all combined into a major failure to predict the Chinese threat and adequately shore up defenses.
When the Chinese began to invade Korea and reports began flowing in, Willoughby took every step to justify and rationalize the intelligence as being anything but the reality of a large scale Chinese military force.[xli] MacArthur too took a personal reconnaissance flight over the Yalu river (where reports stated the Chinese threat was amassing) and, seeing no sign of Chinese forces during daylight, the commander assumed there was no threat and that the intelligence was wrong.[xlii] The continual denying of anything but what was expected and believed true by combatant commanders (along with the providing of intelligence that only backed up what preconceived notions determined) all contributed heavily towards the massive destruction the U.S. military faced at the Battle of Chosin Reservoir and the later failure of the entire war, including directly contributing to the deaths of some 3 million military personnel and civilians.[xliii]
The Korean War, much like the eventual Marxist-Leninist revolution in Cuba, was a massive sand pile that was built upon decades and centuries of inter-class hatred, foreign occupiers, and differing socio-political thought (which was encouraged by the U.S. and Soviets). All of this was building up towards an eventual military conflict, which occurred in 1950, resulting in a weakened South Korean military headed by a rather corrupt government (another grain of sand). American involvement in the Korean War too was largely dependent upon the public which quickly lost interest in the fighting. The final grain of sand was the American intelligence failure which resulted in the Chinese being able to cross into Korea and essentially come to the rescue of their North Korean allies. This intelligence failure, in combination with an ineffective South Korean government, elongated American supply lines, the entry of a large military power in the fighting, and the overall historical and built-up tensions between Koreans, was the final grain of sand that caused the Korean War to be lost, a permanent totalitarian dictatorship put in place in Asia, and the splitting of two countries most likely for the foreseeable future.
The 1993 Intervention in Mogadishu, Somalia
The East African country of Somalia had, since 1969, been under the rule of Mohammed Siad Barre, a dictator who frequently accepted and disdained Soviet and U.S. aid before, in the 1980s, he began losing control of his country due to tribal clans (split into militas) stoking “social and economic problems” and continued international clamor in regards to Siad Barre’s human rights abuses.[xliv] Following a short war with tribal leaders, he was removed from power in 1991.[xlv] Due to an internal power struggle predicated partially upon tribal lines, a civil war erupted complete with “significant civilian casualties…massacres of up to thirty or forty people at a time, cutting off and burning of body parts with acid, and the widespread use of rape,” along with widespread famine.[xlvi]
In 1992, the U.S. began sending aid in conjunction with the United Nations, however, when the warlords confiscated these food drops and utilized them as a form of extortion upon the locals, the U.S. committed U.S. Marines to guard the food stores following outcry in the press.[xlvii] Upon Clinton’s entering office, the Marines were leaving Somalia, yet the militias returned to seizing food stocks, prompting Clinton to engage in regime change operations, sending special operators to Somalia to remove the warlord Mohammed Farah Aidid and restore order to the country.[xlviii] Eventually, during an operation to capture two high-ranking officials in Aidid’s clan, two Black Hawk helicopters were downed by rocket-propelled grenades (RPGs), resulting in a forced defense of the crash sites, the deaths of nineteen U.S. servicemen, and the capture of one American pilot.[xlix] This incident resulted in massive criticism by the public and domestic political leaders alike, forcing President Clinton to remove all U.S. military personnel from Somalia and become apprehensive to foreign policy endeavors.[l] However, examining the operation more carefully, one can see how the Sand Pile theory is beneficial.
The 1993 Operation in Mogadishu was a failure primarily due to a single grain of sand, this coming in the form of foreign aid coming from al-Qaeda. Beginning in 1992, Osama Bin Laden sent members of the foreign terrorist group to train Somali militiamen in their fight against the Americans and UN forces, training the fighters specifically in how to operate RPGs.[li] While some experts on the conflict have argued al-Qaeda’s support was not integral to the outcome, I believe that al-Qaeda’s aiding and providing of training was immensely important as it is well-known that the Somali militia was, “small, disorganized, and ill-equipped…undisciplined”[lii] and that the RPGs proved highly important to the clan’s success.
Normally, the providing of foreign aid (considering the time frame and scale of involvement) is inconsequential to the overall outcome of a national-level foreign policy or military goal. In this case, however, having a situation exacerbated by a lack of military communication, poor timing[liii], a lack of military support, and finally an unformulated policy[liv] resulted in the foreign aid becoming that lone grain of sand which tipped the battle in favor of the Somali militia which resulted in the Americans and United Nations pulling out from the country and essentially leaving the country to their own devices.
The Sand Pile theory is a masterful theoretical framework that allows military operations and entire national security issues to be examined carefully and in consideration with a variety of factors including the history of a nation, the behaviors of individual persons, general human fallibility, poorly thought out foreign policy and military operations, and other seemingly innocuous events, one can be able to see just how important the Sand Pile is in researching national security studies. It allows researchers the ability to see minute details which seriously changed the outcome of a given situation and were important in influencing the public at large.
With U.S. involvement in Cuba, it was clear that the history, culture, and sociopolitical/economic thought process of the nation and its people were highly important in their decision to eventually have a revolution. It was clear that they were upset at the corruption by their government, the constant interference by major foreign powers, and the fact that the people and their elected officials had little to no control over their economy or domestic affairs. This anger and resentment built until the eventual, on-air suicide of a popular critic of the American backed regime, which resulted in another military coup and repressive administration and incited a feeling of tiredness within the public over having such a corrupt system. This suicide, while normally should not be a cause for immense geopolitical change, significantly aided in the eventual Cuban revolution and the complete transformation of government in the island nation.
The same can be said with Korea. Highly important to the eventual outcome of the War was the Korean peoples’ history with foreign occupiers, the past dynastic social structure, and the injection of polar political ideologies by the U.S. and Soviet Union, all of these being contributing factors in the overall outcome of the war (in addition to the poor training and equipment being utilized by South Korean forces and overstretched American supply lines). Even more important was the fact that the Americans did not listen to the intelligence on the ground and allowed, through their own biases, stereotypes, and desires for glory, the Chinese to invade and support their Korean brothers in arms, resulting in a stalemate and the virtually irrevocable splitting of a country. This intelligence failure resulted in the South Korean and American forces being overwhelmed by enemy forces and forced to retreat back behind the 38th Parallel, effectively being the cascade that diametrically changed an entire people.
With U.S. intervention in Somalia in 1993, the United States succeeded initially with sending in Marines to restore order and making a show of American assistance. However, due to a variety of factors considering minute operational details and large-scale foreign policy goals, it resulted in the situation become unstable and susceptible to collapse. The final grain of sand was foreign aid, which, in any other operation, would be a somewhat insignificant and inconsequential considering the type of aid provided. Yet, in the case of Somalia, it resulted in the humiliating withdrawal of U.S. forces from a country in need of dire assistance, the turning over of a country to a warlord who was unable to take and hold power, and the turning of Somalia into what is now blatantly a failed state. Had the United States had a stronger policy or been more resolute in the changing of Somalia into a working and effectively functioning democracy by military force, then the entire effort in Somalia most probably would have succeeded and the East African nation possibly would not be the failed state it is known as today.
In examining regime change operations via the Sand Pile theory, one is able to examine the more minute and unconventional causes of a military or foreign policy failure. It further allows a scholar or researcher the ability to become more ingrained in a culture and history and look at all of the factors of a given situation, determining which incident or development was the final grain of sand which resulted in a cataclysmic cascade. Taking this method of analysis and applying it to national security (regime change, terrorism, nuclear proliferation) and human security (the environment, power, natural disasters) matters, one is able to gain a more well-rounded view of the field, avoid the pitfalls of previous investigations and executions of a particular policy or operation, and adapt to changing developments within an affected nation-state.
Alan Cunningham is a student at Norwich University pursuing a Master of Arts in International Relations. Mr. Cunningham intends to join the United States Army in the Summer of 2021. Mr. Cunningham aims to gain a PhD in History from the University of Birmingham in the United Kingdom and a JD from Syracuse College of Law while completing his military service. Mr. Cunningham also intends to join the federal law enforcement community to take part in counterintelligence investigations. He has previously been published in Small Wars Journal and the Jurist and is currently publishing a work with the USAWC’s online journal the War Room. He can be reached on LinkedIn.
The opinions, conclusions, and recommendations expressed or implied above are those of the authors and do not reflect the views of any organization or any entity of the U.S. government.
[i] Kevin Ward, “Regime,” Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., published 26 November 2014, updated 21 January 2016, https://www.britannica.com/topic/regime#ref1207943. [ii] Doug Bandow, “Regime Change Is a Hard Habit to Break,” The Cato Institute, The Cato Institute, published 21 May 2020, https://www.cato.org/publications/commentary/regime-change-hard-habit-break. [iii] Max Boot, The Savage Wars of Peace: Small Wars and the Rise of American Power (New York, NY: Basic Books, 2002), p. 03, https://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/norwich/detail.action?docID=904273. [iv] Dominic Tierney, “The Legacy of Obama’s ‘Worst Mistake’,” The Atlantic, Emerson Collective, published 15 April 2016, https://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2016/04/obamas-worst-mistake-libya/478461/. [v] Jennifer Ouellette, “Sand Pile Model of the Mind Grows in Popularity,” Scientific American, Springer Nature, published 07 April 2014, https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/sand-pile-model-of-the-mind-grows-in-popularity/. [vi] Ted G. Lewis, Critical Infrastructure in Homeland Security: Defending a Networked Nation (New York, NY: John Wiley& Sons, Inc., 2014), p. 47, 49, https://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/norwich/reader.action?docID=1813343. [vii] Drik Krujit, Cuba and Revolutionary Latin America: An Oral History (London, UK: Zed Books, 2017), p. 13-15. [viii]Evan Thomas, The War Lovers: Roosevelt, Lodge, Hearst, and the Rush to Empire, 1898 (New York, NY: Little, Brown, & Company, 2010), p. 75. [ix] Thomas, The War Lovers, p. 261. [x] “The Sinking of Maine,” Navy History and Heritage Command, U.S. Navy, Department of the Navy, published 17 August 2020, https://www.history.navy.mil/browse-by-topic/disasters-and-phenomena/destruction-of-uss-maine.html. [xi] Editors of Encyclopædia Britannica, “Spanish-American War,” Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., published 20 July 1998, updated 10 September 2020, https://www.britannica.com/event/Spanish-American-War/additional-info#history. [xii] Richard Gott, Cuba: A New History (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2004), p. 104-109. [xiii]Marc Becker, Twentieth-Century Latin American Revolutions (Lanham, MD: Rowan & Littlefield, 2017), p. 109. [xiv] Boot, The Savage Wars of Peace, p. 132. [xv] Gott, Cuba: A New History, p. 112-116. [xvi] Boot, The Savage Wars of Peace, p. 137. [xvii]Becker, Twentieth-Century Latin American Revolutions, p. 109. [xviii]Krujit, Cuba and Revolutionary Latin America: An Oral History, p. 25. [xix] Editors of Encyclopædia Britannica, “Fulgencio Batista,” Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., published 20 July 1998, updated 02 August 2020, https://www.britannica.com/biography/Fulgencio-Batista. [xx] Becker, Twentieth-Century Latin American Revolutions, p. 109. [xxi] Becker, Twentieth-Century Latin American Revolutions, p. 111. [xxii]Krujit, Cuba and Revolutionary Latin America: An Oral History, p. 25-26. [xxiii]Ilan Ehrlich, “Eduardo Chibás: The Incorrigible Man of Cuban Politics,” (dissertation, City University of New York, 2009), p. x, 452-453, https://academicworks.cuny.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=2435&context=gc_etds. [xxiv]Krujit, Cuba and Revolutionary Latin America: An Oral History, p. 26. [xxv] Ibid. [xxvi]Ehrlich, “Eduardo Chibás: The Incorrigible Man of Cuban Politics,” p. x-xi. [xxvii]Gott, Cuba: A New History, p. 145. [xxviii]Ehrlich, “Eduardo Chibás: The Incorrigible Man of Cuban Politics,” p. 111. [xxix]Bruce Cumings, The Korean War: A History (New York, NY: Modern Library Chronicles Book, 2010), p. 04. [xxx] Ibid. [xxxi]David Halberstam, The Coldest Winter: America and the Korean War (New York, NY: Hachette Books, 2007), p. 66-67. [xxxii]Ibid. [xxxiii]Hampton Sides, One Desperate Ground: The Marines of the Reservoir, the Korean War’s Greatest Battle (New York, NY: Random House LLC, 2018), p. 24-25. [xxxiv]Arthur Herman, Douglas MacArthur: American Warrior (New York, NY: Random House, 2016), p. 705, 717 [xxxv]. “Transcript,” The Battle of Chosin, directed by Randall McLowry (2014; Boston, MA: Public Broadcasting Service, 2014), Streaming, https://www.pbs.org/wgbh/americanexperience/films/chosin/#cast_and_crew. [xxxvi]Halberstam, The Coldest Winter, p. 380-382. [xxxvii]Alan R. Millett, “Korean War,” Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., published 04 May 1999, updated 10 September 2020, https://www.britannica.com/event/Korean-War/Armistice. [xxxviii]Dr. Todd Stiefler, “Korean War,” in Encyclopedia of Intelligence and Counterintelligence Vol. 01, ed. Rodney P. Carlisle (London, UK: Routledge, 2015), p. 377, https://search-credoreference-com.library.norwich.edu/content/title/sharpint?tab=entry_view&heading=korean_war&sequence=0. [xxxix]Cumings, The Korean War, p. 26. [xl] Sides, On Desperate Ground, p. 100-101. [xli] Ibid. [xlii]Sides, On Desperate Ground, p. 134-137. [xliii]Matthew White, Atrocities: The 100 Deadliest Episodes in Human History (New York, NY: W.W. Norton & Company, 2012), p. 439. [xliv]George James, “Somalia’s Overthrown Dictator, Mohammed Siad Barre, Is Dead,” The New York Times, The New York Times Company, published 03 January 1995, https://www.nytimes.com/1995/01/03/obituaries/somalia-s-overthrown-dictator-mohammed-siad-barre-is-dead.html. [xlv] Amy McKenna, “Mohammed Siad Barre,” Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., published 24 March 2009, updated 01 January 2020, https://www.britannica.com/biography/Mohamed-Siad-Barre. [xlvi]“Somalia: Fall of Siad Barre and the civil war,” Mass Atrocity Endings, World Peace Foundation, The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University, published 07 August 2015, https://sites.tufts.edu/atrocityendings/2015/08/07/somalia-fall-of-siad-barre-civil-war/. [xlvii]Andrew J. Bacevich, America’s War For The Greater Middle East (New York, NY: Penguin Random House, LLC., 2016), p. 145. [xlviii]Mark Bowden, Black Hawk Down: A Story of Modern War (New York, NY: Grove Press, 1999), p. 92. [xlix]White, Atrocities: The 100 Deadliest Episodes in Human History, p. 517. [l] Bacevich, America’s War For The Greater Middle East, p. 156. [li] James Gordon Meek, “’Black Hawk Down’ Anniversary: Al Qaeda’s Hidden Hand,” ABCNews, The Walt Disney Corporation, published 04 October 2013, https://abcnews.go.com/Blotter/black-hawk-anniversary-al-qaedas-hidden-hand/story?id=20462820. [lii] Maj. Mark F. Duffield, “Into The Beehive-The Somali Habr Gidr Clan as an Adaptive Enemy,” (master’s thesis, Air Command and General Staff College), p. I, 58, https://apps.dtic.mil/dtic/tr/fulltext/u2/a374653.pdf. [liii]Philip Dotson, “The Successes and Failures of the Battle of Mogadishu and Its Effects on U.S. Foreign Policy,” Channels Vol. 01, No. 01 (2016), p. 183-184, https://digitalcommons.cedarville.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1002&context=channels. [liv] Maj. Roger N. Sangvic “Battle of Mogadishu: Anatomy of a Failure,” (master’s thesis, United States Army Command and General Staff College), p. 28-30, https://apps.dtic.mil/dtic/tr/fulltext/u2/a366316.pdf.