Chasing Ghosts: An Irregular Warfare Podcast

by Bill Buppert

An unauthorized podcast series peeking behind the curtain at the vast machinery and briar patch politics of fighting terrorism and insurgency and everything in between. I'm a "COINtra" and not a "COINdinista", the latter are the vast army of apparatchiks and apologists who fire the engines of Irregular Warfare (IW) planet-wide. We're the skeptics and doubters of all things IW and special operations. And we are a tiny sliver  ... 

 ...  Read more

Podcast episodes

  • Season 1

  • Ep 042 "Storming America: War Comes Home"

    Ep 042 "Storming America: War Comes Home"

    In this episode I discuss what the attack looks like in America. This is not if, this is when. The country is poised to experience this through a combination of neglect and the sheer hubris of meddling in the world without realize the unintended consequences. I wish I had better news but you have been warned, it's on the horizon. I talk about William Forstchen's "Day of Wrath" and Kurt Schlichter's "The Attack". References: William Forstchen Day of Wrath Kurt Schlichter The Attack Matt Bracken: Enemies Foreign and Domestic. Foreign Enemies And Traitors. Domestic Enemies: The Reconquista. The Red Cliffs of Zerhoun. Castigo Cay. Eric Frank Russell The Wasp Michael Z. Williamson The Weapon (and the entire Freehold series) Ernest R. May Strange Victory: Hitler’s Conquest of France Robert Heinlein The Moon is a Harsh Mistress Robert Asprey War In The Shadows: The Guerrilla In History My Substack Email at cgpodcast@pm.me.

  • Ep 041 "Storming America: Intelligence Failure is Now and Forever"

    Ep 041 "Storming America: Intelligence Failure is Now and Forever"

    This is a continuation of my "Storming America Series" where I will tease out and describe why the inevitable internal attack on America by external forces will be made real. In this episode, I will examine what intelligence looks like from a professional perspective and why America and the West consistently engage in existential chaos avalanches that make the world a worse place. The bureaucratic impulse in the West has been a significant factor in making the intelligence community (IC), like the military community, a paper tiger that is a far greater danger to the inhabitants of the west than an ally. Until the IC is restructured and made more effective, it will consume roughly 100 billion a year to produce shoddy analysis, inform bad policy and a Keystone Kops foreign covert operations history that is a national shame. Like 9/11 and its existential failures, the next attack on America will have them simply asking for more money and more power. If you leveled the FBI, NSA and CIA tomorrow morning, made each of their budgets one dollar and fired all their employees, you would still be safe as a country. References: Richard J. Heuer The Psychology of Intelligence Analysis David Talbot The Devil's Chessboard: Allen Dulles, the CIA, and the Rise of America's Secret Government Mortimer Adler How to Read a Book Tim Weiner Legacy of Ashes: The History of the CIA John Prado The Ghosts of Langley: Into the CIA's Heart of Darkness My Substack. Contact me at cgpodcast@pm.me.

  • Ep 040 "The Middle East: Shuffling to the Apocalypse (Part Two)""

    Ep 040 "The Middle East: Shuffling to the Apocalypse (Part Two)""

    This episode will be an addendum to my initial coverage in October 2023 of the Gaza-Israel conflict in Episode 027 and riffing off the domestic implications in Episode 037 of a similar attack on CONUS. If you wish to listen to those before you do this one, you may but I have crafted this so that isn’t necessary. The clock is closer to midnight than it was in October 2023. References: William Forstchen Day of Wrath Kurt Schlichter The Attack Matt Bracken: Enemies Foreign and Domestic. Foreign Enemies And Traitors. Domestic Enemies: The Reconquista. The Red Cliffs of Zerhoun. Castigo Cay. Eric Frank Russell The Wasp Michael Z. Williamson The Weapon (and the entire Freehold series) Ernest R. May Strange Victory: Hitler’s Conquest of France Robert Heinlein The Moon is a Harsh Mistress Robert Asprey War In The Shadows: The Guerrilla In History My Substack Email me at cgpodcast@pm.me.

  • Ep 039 "CG Excursion: Stoicism: Who Dares Leads"

    Ep 039 "CG Excursion: Stoicism: Who Dares Leads"

    I am reusing a previous episode I used in the now moribund Stoicism podcast I started, The Dash, which I ran out of steam on. Applying Stoic values and discipline to the vocation and avocations we practice in life may be the hardest part outside of making a Stoic life a lived lifestyle. I find the management industry is a giant cargo cult that publishes books whose pages number in the hundreds but could simply be a page or two. References: James Clear Atomic Habits Marcus Aurelius Meditations Whitney J. Oakes (editor) The Stoic and Epicurean Philosophers: The Complete Extant Writings of Epicurus, Epictetus, Lucretius and Marcus Aurelius My Substack Email me at cgpodcast@pm.me.

  • Ep 038 "Moral Injury: The Invisible Warrior Marks"

    Ep 038 "Moral Injury: The Invisible Warrior Marks"

    The concept of moral injuries for soldiers and non-soldiers alike, the gift of fear and being a dead man walking and how to handle regret and shame. “As beasts are beneath human restraints, gods are above them... It would be foolish and untruthful to deny the appeal of exalted, godlike intoxication....We have seen the paradox that these godlike exalted moments often correspond to times when the men who have survived them say that they have acted like beasts....Above all, a sense of merely human virtue, a sense of being valued and of valuing anything seems to have fled their lives....However, all of our virtues come from not being gods. Generosity is meaningless to a god, who never suffers shortage or want. Courage is meaningless to a god, who is immortal and can never suffer permanent injury. The godlike berserk state can destroy the capacity for virtue. Whether the berserker is beneath humanity as an animal, above it as a god, or both, he is cut off from all human community when he is in this state.” ― Jonathan Shay, Achilles in Vietnam: Combat Trauma and the Undoing of Character Those millions of men who have been in combat over the millennia have always brought home invisible scar tissue and regret that manifests in many ways but most of us take it to our graves. “…or the pilots doing nine-to-five jobs at computer consoles in Nevada killing people in Iraq and Afghanistan with drones and commuting to and from their homes like any other commuters. Imagine the psychic split that must ensue from bringing in death and destruction from the sky on a group of terrorists—young men who have mothers and a misplaced idealism that has led them into horrible criminal acts, but nevertheless young and brave men—and then driving home from the base to dinner with the spouse and kids. “Have a nice day at the office, hon?” ― Karl Marlantes, What It is Like to Go to War References: Karl Marlantes What It Is Like to Go to War Bill Russel Edmonds God is Not Here: A Soldier's Struggle with Torture, Trauma, and the Moral Injuries of War Clark Savage King of All Things: A Guide to Man's Martial Purpose Dick Couch A Tactical Ethic: Moral Conduct in the Insurgent Battlespace Andrew Bacevich Paths of Dissent: Soldiers Speak Out Against America's Misguided Wars Shauna Springer WARRIOR: How to Support Those Who Protect Us Jonathan Shay Achilles in Vietnam: Combat Trauma and the Undoing of Character Jonathan Shay Odysseus in America: Combat Trauma and the Trials of Homecoming My Substack Email at cgpodcast@pm.me.