View Full Version : Irregular Warfare: One Nature, many Characters

Cannoneer No. 4
12-01-2007, 04:11 PM
Swedish Meatballs Confidential (http://swedemeat.blogspot.com/2007/12/irregular-warfare-one-nature-many.html) calls attention to Dr. Colin S. Gray's article in Strategic Studies Quarterly

Some of Dr. Gray's points:

5. Irregular warfare, as contrasted with common banditry, crime, or recreational brigandry and hooliganism, needs an ideology. At least, it needs some facsimile of a big idea or two. Ideas and culture usually do matter in warfare. But for an insurgency to mobilize and grow, it has to have a source of spiritual and/or political inspiration. When combating
an irregular enemy, one cannot help being in competition with that big idea. There is an unhelpful asymmetry in the structure of the context. The insurgent is bidding with promises; you are counter- bidding with what must be a somewhat flawed performance. And bear in mind that the irregular foe will be striving with imagination and perhaps some competence to make your claims for better governance look like lies.

Also bear in mind that the irregular foe has elements in the counterinsurgent's media and "Loyal Opposition" striving to do the exact same thing.

The idea that time is a weapon is somewhat alien—certainly it is unwelcome. But in irregular warfare, an enemy who is greatly disadvantaged materially is obliged to use time against you. He expects to win by not losing because he believes that he can outlast you. The war will not be won or lost in the local barrios and swamps, but in America’s sitting rooms.

The Counterterrorism Communications Center (http://cannoneerno4.wordpress.com/2007/11/17/theyre-talking-like-theyre-beginning-to-get-it/)better get busy.

People matter most, not least in relatively low-technology hostilities. Leaders count. Political charisma and strategic inspiration are priceless assets. In warfare of all kinds, regular and irregular, morale is by far the most important generator of effectiveness. In a protracted irregular conflict, the morale of the rival armed forces can be literally decisive. The skillful leader works to depress the morale of the enemy’s spear carriers.

Morale Operations (http://www.icdc.com/~paulwolf/oss/propagandawarriors.htm)are being conducted against us and nobody is doing much about it.