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Old 05-17-2007   #1
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Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Fort Stewart
Posts: 224
Default Oman / Dhofar campaign: catch all

Moderator's Note: This now little known COIN campaign has re-appeared in August 2010, after points were raised on an Afghan COIN thread and Jon Custis has asked about the coalition built in Oman - which won. I have copied over some of the more promising posts, although there are others notably on two current threads: Winning the war in Afghanistand and COIN and its discontents (ends).

Just got a new book from Amazon a few days ago and couldn't put it down. Its called "In Service of the Sultan: A first-hand account of the Dhofar Insurgency" by Ian Gardiner.

First off, if you are thinking about refugee camps in Africa, you are WAAAY off base. This book covers the counterinsurgency fight in the Dhofar region of Oman in the 1970s. Relatively unknown due to the ongoing Vietnam War and the Cold War in Europe, the Dhofar COIN fight is a classic example of what a good COIN operation looks like. The Brits, leading militarily with their SAS and politically with the Omani Government, waged an effective COIN campaign against communist insurgents. Gardiner does a great job describing the terrain, the culture, and both the strengths and weaknesses of the Dhofari people. He also focuses on both sides of the COIN fight, militarily and politically. He has an easy to read writing style which really helps the book flow along. Gardiner was there and shares his first hand accounts of the fighting that he saw, the progress made since the 1970s and shares his lessons learned in what was a successful COIN Campaign.

Link to the book at Amazon below:

I've read "SAS: Operation Storm: Secret War in the Middle East" by MG Tony Jeapes as well. Its another good account of the Dhofar COIN fight but, in my humble opinion, focuses more on the SAS/military side of the COIN fight. Again, great lessons to be taken away from Jeapes' account...he was a SAS commander in the COIN fight so well worth your time as well.
"But the bravest are surely those who have the clearest vision of what is before them, glory and danger alike, and yet withstanding, go out to meet it."


Last edited by davidbfpo; 06-07-2016 at 01:39 PM.
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