All That Works Is Obsolete: The Shortcomings of US COIN That Must Be Addressed

In the introduction to the University of Chicago Press edition of the US Army/Marine Corps Counterinsurgency Manual (FM 3-24) Sarah Sewall states, “this counterinsurgency field manual challenges much of what is holy about the American way of war…it is therefore both important and controversial.”[1] The importance and controversy cannot be overstated. For a military steeped in “big army” concepts, FM 3-24 represents a radical departure in institutional thinking, it represents a true attempt by the military establishment to “learn and adapt,” concepts near and dear to the heart of John Nagl, one of the many important authors of the text.  At the same time though, while a radical departure for US Army doctrine, the approach articulated in the manual is itself not a radically new method of how to fight an insurgency.

FM 3-24 is with out question an important step in the right direction for the US Military, that being said its methods are more a rewrite of many classical approaches to counterinsurgency (COIN), than they are revolutionary and or new approaches to COIN. For a military, that long ago, in the wake of Vietnam, attempted to wash itself of such conflicts, the restatement and reintroduction of classical approaches to COIN is a necessary first step. Reshaping and creating a coherent method for how the US military approaches insurgency threats is a process that can only be approached one step at a time. It is necessary to first learn to crawl, then walk, then run as they say at Army Training and Doctrine Command. Progress is to be found in moving from one phase to another though, and it is now time for the US military to go from crawling to walking.

With that in mind this paper follows a path laid out by David Kilcullen, Steven Metz, and Frank Hoffman in a series of monographs written over the past decade that highlight some of the differences between the classical era insurgencies and doctrine upon which FM 3-24 is based, and current era insurgencies.[2]  The goal of this analysis is to suggest some of the most pressing conceptual issues that must be tackled in the next COIN manual.  The hope is that by comparing the most commonly sighted classical COIN case study, the French-Algerian War, to one of the most complex and wicked[3] of modern insurgencies, Afghanistan, the necessity of addressing these differences will become apparent.

A Neo-Classical Counterinsurgency[4]

At the current time FM 3-24, the manual that guides US military approaches to COIN campaigns, is a decidedly neo-classical approach, it is in essence a classical approach to counterinsurgency from the 1950s and 1960s repackaged for the modern era.  This reality is most obvious in the definition of the insurgency problem.  The classical French understanding of the an insurgency is “the pursuit of policy [state control] of a party, inside a country, by every means.”[5] In keeping with this definition, FM 3-24 defines insurgency as “an organized movement aimed at the overthrow of a constituted government through the use of subversion and armed conflict.”[6] This definition, while certainly accurate when one examines the anti-colonial insurgencies of the 1950s and 1960s is not as accurate when applied the current conflict environment.  Many of FM 3-24’s current problems stem from this simplistic definition.

The influence of David Galula and colonial COIN in FM 3-24 is most apparent in Chapter One of the manual. In keeping with the critique of the above-mentioned insurgency definition, there is nothing in the manual that one might deem incorrect, but it is not necessarily right either. As Steven Metz notes in his essay New Challenges and Old Concepts: Understanding 21st Century Insurgency, today’s insurgencies are “nested in complex multidimensional clashes” they are not the dichotomous anti-colonial/cold war struggles so often studied, nor are they zero-sum games with a single winner and loser, as anti-colonial and cold war conflicts were.[7] This is a fundamental difference between the “colonial policing actions,” commonly recognized as the universal models of insurgency and today’s conflicts, which would more accurately be termed “international regime change.”[8]

As Frank Hoffman notes in his critique of the manual the authors of FM 3-24 surly recognized many of the flaws in basing the manual so heavily on questionable case studies (Vietnam, Algeria, Malaya) and doctrine (David Galula, Robert Thompson) yet failed to address these shortcomings in anything more than a cursory fashion.[9]  The principal critique, from which all others are generally derived, is again related to the definition presented above. The understanding of insurgency presented in the manual is most heavily influenced by David Galula, who fought a colonial policing action in Algeria, against an enemy who employed a modified Maoist-style people’s revolutionary warfare strategy, it is unclear though if that is the most appropriate comparison for the current insurgencies the US is faced with. A more accurate comparable between today’s conflicts and historical insurgencies is likely one of the South American Che Guervera inspired focoist insurgencies, not a Mao style peoples insurgency, a topic on which the manual spends less than a page.

Despite this shortcoming FM 3-24 is not incorrect just misapplied, many of the same tactics and strategies one might use to fight a Maoist style insurgency are the same as one might use to fight a focoist style insurgency. Indeed, many chapters in the manual are not impacted by the difference, Chapter Six on developing host nation security forces for example.  But the strategic level understanding of insurgency presented in Chapter One is sorely in need of revision. Based on the definition of insurgency presented above Chapter One lays out an understanding of insurgency that assumes incorrect insurgent motivations and posits a dichotomist conflict.  Among these flaws surly the most significant is the assumption of insurgent motivations as purely political. By comparing and contrasting the case of Algeria, a classical case of COIN, and Afghanistan, a very modern conflict, these flaws become apparent.

Insurgency Motivations

As pointed out by Frank Hoffman in Neoclassical Counterinsurgency, FM 3-24 is firmly grounded in classical theories of insurgency and counterinsurgency. Thus, the emphasis throughout the text is on combating the Maoist style national liberation conflicts of the 1950s and 1960s, many of which were colonial struggles. This assumption is reasonable and justifiable for a first pass at constructing a US military doctrine for fighting counterinsurgencies.  The literature on these conflicts is extensive, the history well documented and a preexisting military doctrine already exists in the form of Galula, Trinquier and Thompson. That being said, the Maoist style insurgency has a single-minded focus and motivation, political power. The definition, presented by Galula, and endorsed by FM 3-24, posits the primary objective of insurgents as gaining political power over a state. In the current age it is no longer clear that this is the case, in the first instance because of the difference between a colonial policing action and international regime change and in the second instance because of the impact of money on insurgency fights.

Colonial Policing Action vs. International Regime Change

Galula’s theories were all developed to address a colonial policing action, not international regime change; hence Galula’s many references to both Mao and “colonial revolutionary wars.” While both Galula and FM 3-24 are based on the reasonably accurate assumption that all insurgencies are “characterized by protracted, asymmetric violence, ambiguity, the use of complex terrain, psychological warfare, and political mobilization” this does not mean the grievances are all the same.[10] All insurgencies have different causes, which do indeed result in different outcomes, despite tactical similarities.  In essence insurgent behaviors might be similar but that does not mean motivations are.

A thorough study of the different insurgent grievances would lead to a very long list of insurgency sub-types, but Galula wrote to address the Maoist Style insurgencies, in essence colonial insurgencies, while the conflicts the US is currently confronted with are related to international regime change (IRC).[11]  In a Maoist Style insurgency the “primary antagonists are the insurgents and a national government.”[12]  In insurgences arising from international regime change the primary antagonists are the insurgents and a group who, correctly or not, are perceived by the insurgents as being foreign occupiers.[13]

At the practical level the consequences of this distinction are dramatic; according to Galula the Maoist style insurgency is fueled by political, economic, and or ideological issues.[14]  Thus these insurgencies are more easily countered by the government proving it can address insurgent grievances through political and economic reform, where as in the case of IRC the grievance is the presence of foreign occupiers, perceived as “inherently and insurmountably distinct from the insurgents and their supporters”[15]

An IRC insurgency is thus identity based and all about love and obligation to ones immediate solidarity group, which is usually formed around intractable categories such as religion, clan and ethnicity. No matter how clever or powerful a government is, if they are perceived to be separate from the identifying category insurgents believe is important, they cannot overcome that. What makes IRC insurgencies so different is their bases in what George Friedman described as “love of ones own” which is an emotion he asserts is quickly followed by “fear of the other” [16] Maoist style insurgencies generally have grievances that, governments at least in theory, should understand, issues that revolve around economic self interest, or political representation, individual agency, issues governments are supposed to address.  An IRC insurgency is motivated by fear and love, categories well outside the purview of governments.

Colonial Policing Action vs. International Regime Change in Algeria & Afghanistan

The repercussion of these differences is readily apparent when comparing and contrasting insurgencies in Algeria and Afghanistan. Despite the fact the French were a colonial ruler, the foreign nature of the French played little role in the conflict, instead it was a conflict based on political issues. When the French-Algerian War started, Algeria had been under French Colonial rule for approximately 124 years.  The result of this was a unique culture of mixed Algerian Muslims and French-Algerians (pied noir). At the outbreak of the conflict in 1954, approximately 1 million pied noir, decedents of generations of European-Algerians, lived through out Algeria. This represented roughly 10% of the Algerian population.[17] Furthermore there was a significant portion of the Muslim population that thought of themselves as French.

As a result of the political inclusion of Algeria in France the “civilizing work of France in Algeria” largely took the form of back and forth attempts to further assimilate the Muslim population, with positive steps often being poorly received by the pied noir.[18] Nevertheless, as Todd Shepared writes in his work The Invention of decolonization: The Algerian War and the Remaking of France, “the French government: expected all male inhabitants of Algeria to become French citizens eventually.”[19] The dynamics of the French in Algeria made the insurgency that would come between 1954 and 1962 truly unique.

As a result of the back and forth attempts at further assimilation of the Muslim population, the result of the unique and integral status of Algeria as part of France, and the negative reaction by the European pied noir, three strands of Algerian Nationalism are readily discernable in the pre-war years.[20] The two most significant strands were the fervently nationalist and the liberal strands. Further suggesting the political, rather then identity based nature of the conflict, the liberal strand, represented by Ferhat Abbas, did not in fact argue for separation of Algeria from France, in an often quoted passage from 1936 Abbas stated as much, claiming:

Had I discovered the Algerian nation, I would be a nationalist and I would not blush as if I had committed a crime…however, I will not die for the Algerian nation, because it does not exist.  I have not found it. I have examined History, I questioned the living and the dead, visited cemeteries; nobody spoke to be abut it. I then turned to the Koran and I sought for one solitary verse forbidding a Muslim from integrating himself with a non-Muslim nation. I did not find that either. One cannot build on the wind.[21]

This liberal strand of nationalism soon had its hopes crushed though by the rejection of an equalizing law presented to the government in the form of the Blum-Viollette Bill, which had the support of both strands of nationalist movement. As Alistair Horne highlights in his work A Savage War of Peace, “the abortion of the Blum-Viollette Bill undoubtedly marked a vital turning-point for the Algerian nationalist movement.”[22] The Algerian insurgency can thus trace its roots to a lack of meaningful political reform, rather then identity issues related to a foreign presence.  It thus makes sense that the work of David Galula, which sought to correct flaws in the French strategy, would focus on the political factor of the conflict.  This is quite in contrast to Afghanistan.

In Afghanistan the insurgent grievance is a wholly different matter, according to Antonio Giustozzi the current Taliban is motivated by highly intractable cultural issues based on an ideology of “conservative village Islam with Deobandi doctrines, with a stress on the importance of ritual and modes of behavior.”[23] These highly inflexible issues are well outside the prevue of the current government to deal with politically; the Deobandi ideology includes strict restrictions of freedoms, especially in regards to woman, which cannot be accommodated within a democratic government. As such, the Taliban view the government and its ISAF/NATO allies to be takfir, they are essentially all apostates, for whom, according to the Deobandi interpretation of the Hadith, the only penalty is death. Applying a political solution to this problem, as Galula and FM 3-24 advocate is impossible, what political solution could there be?

Furthermore the Afghan insurgency is highly clan based, identifying primarily with two southern Pashto Clans, the Ghilzai and the Durrani.  The table below highlights the clan make up of the Taliban leadership that gathered together in 2003 for the Rabbari Shura:

Name[24] Clan Background
Mullah Omar Ghilzai
Mullah Obaidullah Durrani
Saifullah Mansoor Ghilzai
Mullah Dadullah Ghurghusht
Akthar Mohammad Osmani Durrani
Jalaluddin Haqqani Karlanri
Mullah Baradar Durrani
Hafix Abdul Majid Durrani
Mullah Abdur Razzaq Durrani
Akhtar Mohammad Mansoor Durrani

As one can see the Taliban leadership is majority Durrani. While there is no evidence to support the claim that the Taliban do no accept members of other tribes, or are intent on some kind of clan based genocide, it is difficult to argue with the claim that they have a built in support base amongst a select group of clans, again this is not a claim that the Taliban is a tribal organization only that they have easier access to certain groups then ISAF/NATO would. As David Galula states:

If the insurgent manages to dissociate the population from the counterinsurgent, to control it physically, to get its active support, he will win the war because, in the final analysis the exercise of political power depends on the tacit or explicit agreement of the population[25]

The Taliban are based on ethnic and clan relations, this presents them with a preexisting population from whom they already have tacit or explicit support. The Durrani clan reportedly makes up 16% of the Afghan population, and the Ghilzai Clan, from which Taliban leader Mullah Omar comes from is the second largest Pashto tribe in Afghanistan. The Taliban thus has relationships with large sectors of the population based on a common heritage and past, which is a bond difficult to overcome with good governance, the essence of the political solution advocated for by Galula and FM 3-24.

The Role of Money in the Modern Insurgency

David Galula wrote about confronting a very specific type of insurgency and because of that many of his prescriptions may no longer be relevant; given this factor many aspects of FM 3-24 are similarly inapplicable to the challenges the US military currently faces. As stated countless times both Galula and FM 3-24 are geared towards addressing Maoist style people’s insurgencies, or anti-colonialist struggles. Regardless of what one calls it “the conflict results from the action of the insurgent aiming to seize power—or at splitting off from the existing country.”[26]  The problem with this prescription is that it is no longer apparent that this is the goal of most insurgencies, especially the ones the US military currently finds itself confronted with.  When David Galula fought the insurgency in Algeria his enemy was the FLN, an organization that collected taxes, constructed shadow governments, and attempted to supplant the French government. While the Taliban does many of these things in Afghanistan, the Taliban represents only a single element in a far more complex field of insurgents.

Both Galula’s writing and FM 3-24 assume a binary conflict, not only in the enemies faced, as discussed previously, but also in terms of the motivations of those enemies. Today’s conflicts are no longer a question of us vs. them though; the multiple enemies that ISAF/NATO forces are faced with in Afghanistan lack a unified front. As Steven Metz suggests the modern insurgency is “more like a violent, fluid and competitive market” than it is a “traditional war where the combatants seek strategic victory.”[27] In examining Algeria it is clear that the FLN sought to obtain a power monopoly, they sought to supplant the French as the government.  In Afghanistan, the Taliban may seek to supplant the Afghan Government but organizations like the Haqqanni Network and Hizb e-Islami Gulbuddin, and more importantly transnational criminal organizations do not.  These organizations have objectives that are not only completely different than the Taliban, but their goals are much more limited.

Often times today’s insurgencies are economic affairs, they produce livelihoods for participants, and drive organizational profitability. While combatants “have continued to mobilize around political, communal and security objectives,” as Karen Ballentine and Jake Sherman have written, “increasingly these objective have become obscured and sometimes contradicted by their more businesslike activities.” [28] The nature of the threat thus changes; counterinsurgents are no longer concerned with “an organized movement aimed at the overthrow of a constituted government through the use of subversion and armed conflict” but rather with the possibility of protracted conflict for the sake of conflict.[29] Within the complex modern insurgency “alternative system[s] of profit, power and protection” emerge which serve “the political and economic interests of a variety of groups.”[30] This has the affect of creating greater interest in prolonging conflict rather then resolving it, even if resolution is possible.

Diversity of Actors

Once again we return to David Galula’s definition of an insurgency as “the pursuit of policy of a party, inside a country, by every means.”[31]  FM 3-24 rightly expands upon this definition claiming an insurgency is a movement, recognizing the possibility of multiple belligerents on the enemies side, going so far as to state that “even in internal war, the involvement of outside actors is expected.”[32] This important recognition however does not translate into strategic or tactical recommendations though.  Again the failure to ground the study in relevant case studies (Somalia, Bosnia, Kosovo, Chechnya) and the heavy bias towards the writings of David Galula would seem a key issue at play in this decision.

The emphasis placed on the division of a conflict into the nebulas categories of insurgent, government and unaligned population is a gross misrepresentation of the “insurgent battleground as a place where the population interacts directly with either governments or insurgents.”[33]  This line of thought suggests two shortcomings, on one hand the failure to recognize the complexity of local power structures and on the other the diversity of combatants.

Within every society, power structures are far more complex than simply government and population. There are many layers of leadership and solidarity between the population and the national level government. Political control and power is exercised through multiple layers of groups with differing allegiances.  There is little question that this recognition has been made by commanders on the field in both Iraq and Afghanistan, the success of the Sunni Awakening being a perfect example of this recognition, but little discussion of it is made in the manual. As with many things, FM 3-24 recognizes the existence of a multilevel power structure but reduces the components to a few pages (85-88) and fails to present any adequate theories to drive commander’s understanding. No question creating diagrams and maps of local and regional power structures/relationships is valuable, but as FM 3-24 suggests “campaign design may very well be the most important aspect of countering an insurgency” and yet precious little guidance is provided as to how this information should be used to shape and accomplish socio-political objectives. [34]

The second shortcoming of the understanding of the COIN environment as a place where the population interacts with government or insurgents is the failure to properly account for the numerical diversity of stack holders in the conflict.  In FM 3-24 the insurgent is understood as a group or movement that, as David Galula said “must, of course, be able to identify himself totally with the cause, or more precisely, with the entire majority of the population.”[35] In Algeria this was very much the case, French forces squared off against the FLN, and while the FLN was not initially the only insurgent game in town, they very quickly absorbed all the others. Even when there were multiple groups, there was only ever a single agenda item for them all, and that was expelling the French. By the end of the conflict the French government engaged in negotiations with only the FLN.  The FLN, in essence, achieved unity of effort across the entire battlefield at both a military level and a political level.

This is not comparable to current conflicts at all, the modern battlefield is littered with independent warlords, transnational terrorists, both local and transnational criminal organizations and any number of petty criminals who given the already existing chaos can do as much damage as the actual insurgent groups themselves. In Afghanistan, the diversity of actors is dramatic. ISAF/NATO forces not only deal with many different types of enemies: religious/political insurgents, terrorists, warlords, criminal organizations, profiteers etc, but a diversity of groups within each fighting category.  The most obvious enemy is the Taliban who presumably have an obvious political objective, but not only is this open to debate but the idea that they are a unified group is dubious as well. NATO/ISAF has to deal with local terrorist organizations such as the Haqqanni Network and Hizb e-Islami Gulbuddin, whose objectives are perhaps the most opaque of any major combatant.  Additionally, ISAF/NATO have to fight transnational organizations such as Al Qaeda and many non-descript, unnamed transnational criminal organizations engaged in both arms and drug trafficking.

All things considered the US military would be much happier, if, as the manual suggests, the fight was between just the government and the insurgent.  Sadly it is not.  Although the manual recognizes the existence of these additional combatants on the modern battlefield it presents no advice on how to confront such challenges. How does one fight a group whose sole intent is killing, Haqqanni Network for example, while still presenting a friendly face to the population so as to counter the Taliban, the group best countered with classic counterinsurgency approaches, all while addressing the harm transnational drug trafficking organizations are doing to the economy by steering it towards poppy cultivation? The problem is certainly not as simple as the comparably one-dimensional political enemy the French faced in the form of the FLN.

Conclusions

There is no question that FM 3-24 is an important step in the right direction for the US Military, it represents the first attempt in many years to create a coherent strategy for addressing insurgency conflicts.  That being said its authors have based its conclusions on ideas that are only partially applicable to today’s battlefield. As this paper suggests there is a fundamental difference between the “colonial policing actions,” commonly recognized as the universal models of insurgency, and today’s conflicts, which would more accurately be termed “international regime change.”[36] Not only is the initial cause of the conflict different, but also the number of combatants on the field has grown dramatically, along with the diversity of their motivations.  A comparison of the classic counterinsurgency in Algeria and the modern counterinsurgency in Afghanistan demonstrate the growing gap between historical example and the current problem.

The understanding of insurgency presented in the manual relies far to heavily on the ideas of classical counterinsurgents like David Galula, who fought a colonial policing action in Algeria, against an enemy who employed a modified Maoist-style people’s revolutionary warfare strategy. And while it is surly only in the crawling stage, the manual must be updated to better address the nature of insurgency today. Getting the US Military understanding of insurgency to the run stage will, first and foremost, require more fully integrating the lessons learned in the field, during the last five years of conflict in Afghanistan and Iraq, into the manual.  Most importantly, the western way of war, in which conflict is politics/policy by other means, need not be the only lens through which the military understands problems, even if it remains the only lens through which it operates. Insurgencies are not fought simply for political reasons but also for intractable social and cultural reasons, and this lesson must be further examined and understood.

Works Citied

Ballentine, Karen, Jake Sherman, and Peace Academy International. The Political Economy of Armed Conflict : Beyond Greed and Grievance. Boulder, Colo.: Lynne Rienner Publishers, 2003.

Berdal, Mets and David Keen. “Violence and Economic Agendas in Civil Wars: Some Policy Implications.” Millennium no. 3 (1997).

Galula, David, 1919-. Counterinsurgency Warfare; Theory and Practice. New York,: Praeger, 1964.

Giustozzi, Antonio. Koran, Kalashnikov and Laptop : The Neo-Taliban Insurgency in Afghanistan. London: Hurst, 2007.

Gorka, Sebastian and David Kilcullen. “An Actor-Centric Theory of War: Understanding the Difference between COIN and Counterinsurgency.” Joint Force Quarterly no. 60 (1st Quarter, 2011): 14-18.

Hoffman, Frank G. “Neo-Classical Counterinsurgency?” Parameters: U.S.Army War College 37, no. 2 (Summer2007, 2007): 71-87.

Horne, Alistair. A Savage War of Peace : Algeria, 1954-1962. Rev. ed. New York, N.Y., U.S.A.: Penguin Books, 1987.

Isaac, Jeffrey. “The New U.S. Army/Marine Corps Counterinsurgency Field Manual as Political Science and Political Praxis.” Perspectives on Politics 6, no. 2 (June, 2008).

Kilcullen, David. “Counter-Insurgency Redux.” Survival (00396338) 48, no. 4 (Winter2006, 2006): 111-130.

Metz, Steven. “New Challenges and Old Concepts: Understanding 21st Century Insurgency.” Parameters: U.S.Army War College 37, no. 4 (Winter2007, 2007): 20-32.

Metz, Steven, Raymond A. Millen, and Army War College (US) Strategic,Studies Institute. Insurgency and Counterinsurgency in the 21st Century : Reconceptualizing Threat and Response. Insurgency and Counterinsurgency in the 21st Century. Special Series. Carlisle Barracks, PA: Strategic Studies Institute, U.S. Army War College, 2004.

Shepard, Todd, 1969-. The Invention of Decolonization : The Algerian War and the Remaking of France. Ithaca, N.Y.: Cornell University Press, 2006.

Stora, Benjamin, 1950-. Algeria, 1830-2000 : A Short History. Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2001.

United States Dept of,the Army and Marine Corps United States. The U.S. Army/Marine Corps Counterinsurgency Field Manual : U.S. Army Field Manual no. 3-24 : Marine Corps Warfighting Publication no. 3-33.5. University of Chicago Press / foreword by John A. Nagl ; with a new introduction by Sarah Sewall. ed. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2007.


[1]  United States Dept of,the Army and Marine Corps United States, The U.S. Army/Marine Corps Counterinsurgency Field Manual : U.S. Army Field Manual no. 3-24 : Marine Corps Warfighting Publication no. 3-33.5, University of Chicago Press / foreword by John A. Nagl ; with a new introduction by Sarah Sewall. ed. (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2007), XXI.

[2] See, David Kilcullen, “Counter-Insurgency Redux,” Survival (00396338) 48, no. 4 (Winter2006, 2006), 111-130., Frank G. Hoffman, “Neo-Classical Counterinsurgency?” Parameters: U.S.Army War College 37, no. 2 (Summer2007, 2007), 71-87., Steven Metz, “New Challenges and Old Concepts: Understanding 21st Century Insurgency,” Parameters: U.S.Army War College 37, no. 4 (Winter2007, 2007), 20-32. & Steven Metz, Raymond A. Millen and Army War College (US) Strategic,Studies Institute, Insurgency and Counterinsurgency in the 21st Century : Reconceptualizing Threat and Response (Carlisle Barracks, PA: Strategic Studies Institute, U.S. Army War College, 2004), 43.

[3] Wicked in this case refers to the idea originally coined by C. West Churchman to describe problems that are, at there simplest, difficult or impossible to solve as a result of incomplete and or contradictory information and an ever changing end state goal.

[4] This is a categorization of FM 3-24 and current COIN strategy found in Hoffman, Neo-Classical Counterinsurgency?, 71-87

[5]  David Galula  1919-, Counterinsurgency Warfare; Theory and Practice (New York,: Praeger, 1964), 3.

[6]  United States Dept of,the Army and United States, The U.S. Army/Marine Corps Counterinsurgency Field Manual : U.S. Army Field Manual no. 3-24 : Marine Corps Warfighting Publication no. 3-33.5, 2

[7] No conflict is quite as simple as a zero sum game, but the point is anti-colonial struggles and cold war conflicts were far more two sided then any current engagement.

[8]  Sebastian Gorka and David Kilcullen, “An Actor-Centric Theory of War: Understanding the Difference between COIN and Counterinsurgency,” Joint Force Quarterly, no. 60 (1st Quarter, 2011), 17.

[9]  Hoffman, Neo-Classical Counterinsurgency?, 73

[10] Metz, Millen and Army War College (US) Strategic,Studies Institute, Insurgency and Counterinsurgency in the 21st Century : Reconceptualizing Threat and Response, 2

[11] For a broader discussion of insurgent grievances, see Sebastian Gorka and David Kilcullen, “An Actor-Centric Theory of War: Understanding the Difference between COIN and Counterinsurgency,” Joint Force Quarterly, no. 60 (1st Quarter, 2011), 14-18.

[12] Metz, Millen and Army War College (US) Strategic,Studies Institute, Insurgency and Counterinsurgency in the 21st Century : Reconceptualizing Threat and Response, 43

[13] Ibid., 43

[14]  Galula, Counterinsurgency Warfare; Theory and Practice, 16

[15] Ibid., 43

[16] George Friedman, The Methodology of Geopolitics: Love of One’s Own and the Importance of PlaceStratfor, May 26, 2008.

[17]  Benjamin Stora  1950-, Algeria, 1830-2000 : A Short History (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2001), 30.

[18]  Alistair Horne, A Savage War of Peace : Algeria, 1954-1962, Rev. ed. (New York, N.Y., U.S.A.: Penguin Books, 1987), 36-37.

[19]  Todd Shepard  1969-, The Invention of Decolonization : The Algerian War and the Remaking of France (Ithaca, N.Y.: Cornell University Press, 2006), 22.

[20]  Horne, A Savage War of Peace : Algeria, 1954-1962, 38

[21]  Ibid., 40

[22]  Ibid., 40

[23]  Antonio Giustozzi, Koran, Kalashnikov and Laptop : The Neo-Taliban Insurgency in Afghanistan (London: Hurst, 2007), 12.

[24]  Ibid., 47

[25]  Galula, Counterinsurgency Warfare; Theory and Practice, 6

[26]  Ibid., 1

[27]  Metz, New Challenges and Old Concepts: Understanding 21st Century Insurgency, 23

[28]  Karen Ballentine, Jake Sherman and Peace Academy International, The Political Economy of Armed Conflict : Beyond Greed and Grievance (Boulder, Colo.: Lynne Rienner Publishers, 2003), 3.

[29]  United States Dept of,the Army and United States, The U.S. Army/Marine Corps Counterinsurgency Field Manual : U.S. Army Field Manual no. 3-24 : Marine Corps Warfighting Publication no. 3-33.5, 2

[30]  Mets Berdal and David Keen, “Violence and Economic Agendas in Civil Wars: Some Policy Implications,” Millennium, no. 3 (1997), 797.

[31]  Galula, Counterinsurgency Warfare; Theory and Practice, 3

[32]  United States Dept of,the Army and United States, The U.S. Army/Marine Corps Counterinsurgency Field Manual : U.S. Army Field Manual no. 3-24 : Marine Corps Warfighting Publication no. 3-33.5, 3

[33]  Jeffrey Isaac, “The New U.S. Army/Marine Corps Counterinsurgency Field Manual as Political Science and Political Praxis,” Perspectives on Politics 6, no. 2 (June, 2008), 352.

[34]  United States Dept of,the Army and United States, The U.S. Army/Marine Corps Counterinsurgency Field Manual : U.S. Army Field Manual no. 3-24 : Marine Corps Warfighting Publication no. 3-33.5, 150

[35]  Galula, Counterinsurgency Warfare; Theory and Practice, 15

[36]  Gorka and Kilcullen, An Actor-Centric Theory of War: Understanding the Difference between COIN and Counterinsurgency, 17

Written by: William Thomson
Written at: Harvard University
Written for: Dr. Katrina Hagen
Date written: May 2011

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