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Thread: What the Troops Really Need

  1. #1
    Small Wars Journal SWJED's Avatar
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    Sep 2005
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    Default What the Troops Really Need

    17 Dec. Washington Post Op-Ed - What the Troops Really Need.

    "Clear, Hold and Build" is the new official security approach for victory in Iraq. President Bush presented this strategy in a recent series of speeches, and the phrase is featured prominently in the White House's "National Strategy for Victory in Iraq." The wisdom of this policy suggests that the U.S. leadership may finally "get it."

    History demonstrates that successful counterinsurgency requires an integrated civil-military effort focused on strengthening local institutions, not just chasing down bad guys. Unfortunately, the United States lacks the nonmilitary institutional capacity to carry out this strategy -- and if current political trends continue, it will not have the capacity to "build" anytime soon.

    In the new strategy, "clearing" an area of insurgents through aggressive military operations is only useful if that same area is then "held" by security forces that can prevent insurgents from resuming violence against the civilian population. But U.S. forces cannot hold these areas forever. The population's future depends on the "building" of durable local institutions, including mechanisms for security, governance and economic development. This building requires the assistance of nonmilitary experts -- the type that the United States has failed to develop and deploy in sufficient numbers to adequately assist the troops in the field...

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    Oct 2005


    Right out of the mouth of David Galula ca. 1964.

    How much of this should be placed at the feet of State?


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