Improving the Understanding of Political Legitimacy in COIN Doctrine
Tue, 02/18/2020 - 9:45am
Army and Marine Corps Counterinsurgency Doctrine was initially developed in the midst of the Iraq War as the military struggled to accept the situation it found itself in and struggled to create a strategy to address it. Initially published in 2004 as an interim doctrine, and then in 2006 as a completed publication, the Army and Marine Corps’ primary counterinsurgency doctrine has only been updated once since then.
For a Pioneer nation like America, built on exploration and a seemingly endless frontier, the romance of expeditions is part of our national psyche. The term “Expeditionary Force” sounds cool, as it evokes feelings of adventure and risk-taking in far-away places. Expeditionary forces are comprised of tough, competent men who travel light in remote areas, and rely on their wits to survive and win in unfamiliar environments. Thus, it’s only natural we want to call everything our military does abroad an “Expeditionary Force.”
About the Author(s)
Western COIN: The Rise of “Soft” Counterinsurgency Doctrine
Sun, 09/15/2019 - 12:38am
This paper examines the major shifts in irregular warfare, defined here in accordance with the U.S. Department of Defense’s Joint Operating Concept as “a violent struggle among state and non-state actors for legitimacy and influence over [a designated] population.” While there have been several noteworthy evolutions in the ways in which insurgents wage war, this paper argues that the most consequential developments in irregular warfare have occurred on the state-side, reasoning that Western democracies’ embrace of “soft” COIN approaches has spread worldwide.
Why Doctrine Matters
Sun, 06/30/2019 - 5:17pm
Critics will argue that furniture instructions are a poor analogy for doctrine. And yes, they are correct. Doctrine is not meant to be a step-by-step guide. It is meant to allow flexibility and adaptability as conditions change. Doctrine, however, should not be shunned. It should not sit idle on a shelf or the Army Publishing Directorate website.
Parade and Event Security
Thu, 09/27/2018 - 1:21am
Establishing effective parade and event security at mass gatherings, in certain circumstances can involve mitigating a sub-set of terrorist, extremist or violent bombings with an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) classified as in-situ attacks. An in-situ attack occurs where an IED has been used against people who are packed or blocked into a confined space, offering a dense target. The attack results in a higher level of fatal casualties. A core problem with mass gatherings is that these unavoidably create areas where people are blocked together unable to freely move, for a lengthy time.
The Challenge of Fighting Small Wars While Trying to Adequately Prepare for Big Ones
Thu, 09/20/2018 - 2:51am
Except for the initial invasion of Iraq in 2003, America has been fighting small, counterinsurgency wars since 9-11. This begs the question of whether fighting small wars inhibits or enhances our readiness to transition to large, high-intensity conflicts against peer or near peer competitors? The answer is complicated and somewhat ambiguous.
A Policy of Defeat
Wed, 07/04/2018 - 6:31am
This work intends to assess how the German military achieved in six and half weeks in 1940 what it could not accomplish in over four years of fighting a generation earlier.
Deception as a Pervasive and Elemental Force
Wed, 01/17/2018 - 12:28am
The purpose of this short review is to present a different concept of deception - that it should be viewed as a pervasive and elemental force in operations.
United Nations Peacekeeping Offensive Operations: Theory and Doctrine
Thu, 09/28/2017 - 11:42am
The point of departure of this paper is that the UN has not defined offensive operations, and specified what this means in practice.
British Counterinsurgency: Returning Discriminate Coercion to COIN
Fri, 08/25/2017 - 2:17am
Modern British doctrine, while espousing many successful principles, neglects some critical lessons from actual British practice.