Small Wars Journal

Collateral Damage and Counterinsurgency Doctrine

Tue, 02/05/2008 - 9:10am

Collateral Damage and Counterinsurgency Doctrine

by Major General Charles J. Dunlap, Jr.

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When America's landpower services issued their new counterinsurgency (COIN) doctrine in December of 2006, the Pentagon rightly hailed it as "a real team effort of Army and Marine writers." Although officially cast as simply doctrine for the two services, it was not long before Field Manual (FM) 3-24, (designated by the Marine Corps as Warfighting Publication 3-33.5) was being broadly touted in the media as "The Book" on Iraq.

Following the designation of one of FM 3-34's principal architects, General David H. Petraeus, as the Commanding General of the Multinational Force, it actually became, in effect, the strategy not just for the ground component, but the whole joint force in Iraq. Reflecting the views of many, Senator John McCain calls it the "blueprint of U.S. efforts" to secure that troubled country for its citizens.

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Maj. Gen. Charles J. Dunlap Jr is right to focuse on "Collateral Damage".

As "COIN aficionado" let me quote that one of the best and positive EBO that anybody can account using Air Power against terrorism -linked with complex and hi-level Intel and political management- was the "armed Predator" attack against Yemen's Al Qaeda leadership in 2002, November

By the way, the main Malayan Emergency's EBO (1948-1961), today, are:

1. Malaisian comparative "fortress" regarding Al Qaeda' workshop and desestabilitation efforts into Indonesia, and

2. "Pro Western" attitudes from Singapur City-State, Chinesse's leadership.

No matter for "bodycounts" policies, I think.