Counterinsurgency

Discussion in 'Military' started by midcan5, Jun 24, 2010.

  1. midcan5
    Online

    midcan5 liberal / progressive

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2007
    Messages:
    10,794
    Thanks Received:
    2,367
    Trophy Points:
    245
    Location:
    Philly, PA
    Ratings:
    +3,306
    Remember when nation building was a bad thing, what changed. How do you do a Marshall Plan when the basics are missing? Interesting topic.

    'Rolling Stone Article’s True Focus: Counterinsurgency' By Timothy Hsia

    “COIN doctrine [is] an oxymoron.”

    "While counterinsurgency has gained a large following there is nonetheless growing dissatisfaction with the strategy within the military. Soldiers at the squad and platoon level have begun to chafe at what is perceived to be overly restrictive rules of engagement. Additionally, counterinsurgency has become a target for critics like George Will, Col. Gian Gentile and Andrew J. Bacevich. These detractors have pointed out contradictions and weaknesses related to a counterinsurgency approach to foreign policy and also how it is implemented in combat. To these critics, counterinsurgency is a foolhardy commitment that weakens America, because it invests too greatly in regions which America will be unlikely to recoup its costs, and also because it weakens the nation’s ability to wage conventional wars."

    Rolling Stone Article’s True Focus: Counterinsurgency - At War Blog - NYTimes.com
     
  2. CrusaderFrank
    Offline

    CrusaderFrank Diamond Member

    Joined:
    May 20, 2009
    Messages:
    81,262
    Thanks Received:
    14,919
    Trophy Points:
    2,210
    Ratings:
    +37,061
    Wait a second, is the mission the problem or is it Obama's "First do no harm" rules of engagement?

    Also, in William Lind wrote about this 20 years ago and predicted the rise of this "Fourth Generation Warfare" In fact, the very articles as published in Marine Corp Gazette was found in AQ holdout in Iraq when we raided them.

    He's recommended response was something totally, totally, totally different than that is being executed today.
     
  3. midcan5
    Online

    midcan5 liberal / progressive

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2007
    Messages:
    10,794
    Thanks Received:
    2,367
    Trophy Points:
    245
    Location:
    Philly, PA
    Ratings:
    +3,306
  4. CrusaderFrank
    Offline

    CrusaderFrank Diamond Member

    Joined:
    May 20, 2009
    Messages:
    81,262
    Thanks Received:
    14,919
    Trophy Points:
    2,210
    Ratings:
    +37,061
    "Worse Than a Nightmare

    President Obama"

    yeah, that pretty much says it all
     
  5. CrusaderFrank
    Offline

    CrusaderFrank Diamond Member

    Joined:
    May 20, 2009
    Messages:
    81,262
    Thanks Received:
    14,919
    Trophy Points:
    2,210
    Ratings:
    +37,061
    [ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l4vlBgh7KLg]YouTube - Obama VS. David Axelrod on the surge[/ame]
     
  6. editec
    Offline

    editec Mr. Forgot-it-All

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2008
    Messages:
    41,427
    Thanks Received:
    5,598
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    Maine
    Ratings:
    +5,618
    Waste4 of money and manpower to be in Afghanistan.

    They don't want to be like us.

    The best way to change that place is to SEDUCE the people into modernization.

    Forcing people to change their ways is a wasted effort.

    Now since this is SO OBVIOUS I can only conclude that we're there for reasons other than nation-building.
     
  7. Toome
    Offline

    Toome Active Member

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2009
    Messages:
    906
    Thanks Received:
    258
    Trophy Points:
    28
    Ratings:
    +259
    Counterinsurgency operations are the most difficult of all. Soldiers (and Marines, Sailors & Airmen) are trained to win wars. You do that by eliminating the enemy's capacity to fight either by killing a huge number of them or by inflicting so much damage that they no longer have the will to fight. That's pretty simple when it comes to conventional wars fought on a conventional battlefield with a force on one side and the opponent on the other. However, this is not the nature of today's warfare.

    Today's warfare is a delicate balance between building a new nation and getting rid of those who would stand in the way of progress. Terrorism and counterterrorism are the nuts and bolts of this type of warfare rather than the traditional battlefield tactics of attack and counterattack. Traditional warfare is measured in terms of fighting until one of the sides runs out of men and equipment and either dies or surrenders. As long as you can see them on the battlefield, you can shoot 'em up. Today's warfare is much different because the opposition comes from the very same population we're trying to help rebuild a new nation. The baker who smiles at you in the day is the same one who helps the insurgent plant the IED on the most frequently traveled road in order to get the most casualties. It's nothing personal; it's just the nature of the beast. Arresting that baker does no good because then it only reinforces the perception that we're nothing but a bunch of occupiers. Killing him only inflames his friends and family and turns some of them into more insurgents who will build more IEDs and plant them in more places.

    What it takes is changing the attitude of that baker. And what makes that so difficult are prejudices and beliefs reinforced by centuries of custom, tradition and culture. Throw in religion, and you have a belief becomes significantly more difficult to change.

    I'm not advocating that we avoid these types of engagements. I've seen nation-building operations work quite well. However, it requires a willingness to invest a lot of time, effort and suffer a lot of casualties along the way. And we Americans simply don't have that type of patience. Add in our political prejudices, and it's pretty easy to derail even the best of efforts. Case in point: Iraq. We're doing exactly the right things in Iraq, have been doing it for a great number of years. However, when the media and editorial pundits politicize it, then it's difficult to define success. And that's another point: success is measured on a pretty straightforward basis. In other words, it's unrealistic to expect a nation of Islamic faithful to abandon their customs and sing in the streets embracing Jeffersonian democracy. Life doesn't work that way. Yet we seem to cling to these unrealistic expectations, or at least we lace our rhetoric with these unrealistic descriptions.

    The key thing to remember when it comes to counterinsurgency operations is that it stems from a portion of the population that has a legitimate complaint. Not saying that their methods are valid; just saying that their beliefs are. Until we crack the code on that, then we will have to contend with that baker who serves pastries with a smile and lets the insurgent use his basement for planning the next attack.
     
    • Thank You! Thank You! x 1

Share This Page