Tobias Bernard Switzer
When imagining counterinsurgency, I think about flying a helicopter full of US Navy SEALs and their Iraqi commando counterparts in the middle of the night to raid a target near Ramadi. The memory of conducting tactical air reconnaissance over an objective near Kabul with a mix of US and Afghan crewmembers also comes to mind. Others who have served in uniform likely have similar memories of their experiences with counterinsurgency.
But David Ucko wants me to stop. Ucko, a professor at the College of International Security Affairs, the Department of Defense’s irregular warfare college, claims insurgency is changing. And in response, the United States’ militaristic approach to counterinsurgency must change, too, Ucko warns in his latest book, The Insurgent’s Dilemma: A Struggle to Prevail. Analyzing the major trends affecting insurgencies and how they might adapt in the future, Ucko urges policymakers “to move the discussion beyond the military institutions which have dominated the conversation” and on to a whole-of-government approach.
This Irregular Warfare Initiative article was originally posted through our partner organization, the Modern War Institute at West Point. Continue reading the full article here.
Image credit: Sgt. Desmond Martin, US Marine Corps