Gian Gentile: Exposing Counterfeit COIN - Kelley B. Vlahos, Antiwar.com.
... Hadn't you heard of Gian Gentile?
He shook his head.
He's active duty. He's West Point, I pressed on. He's at the forefront of this pushback against COIN.
The journalist shook his head. He let me write down Gentile's name. Looking skeptical, he moved on.
It really shouldn't be a surprise, that members of the elite news media — particularly the ones who don't necessarily focus on a national security beat — fasten easily onto the conventional narrative and "move on" condescendingly, satisfied their knowledge is au courant and complete.
Army Colonel Gian Gentile just doesn't fit into their equation, though his name is known well enough, if only at the U.S Military Academy, military journals, critical foreign policy webzines like Antiwar.com, and as a foil and vexation for the COIN-centric blogs, the doctrine's biggest promoters, like Small Wars Journal and Abu Muqawama (a moniker for Andrew Exum, Iraq war veteran and senior fellow at Flournoy's CNAS).
To the rest of the world, the mainstream media included, Col. Gentile is kind of a ghost. Persistent and clever, sometimes noisome and everywhere. That he might remain invisible to people inside-the-beltway is only a problem in that information gatekeepers like the aforementioned journo, craft narratives about the war — about future wars — without the consistent insight of the contrary view. As consumers of the news — as Americans — we should demand the whole scoop...
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