Plan of Attack: Bruce Hoffman

And we move on to Bruce Hoffman’s piece where he suggests that the insurgency currently in Iraq might come under a definition called “netwar”. This is a concept thought up by RAND analysts John Arquilla and David Ronfeldt in 1992. Defined as:

Unconventional warfare involving flat, segmented networks instead of the pyramidal hierarchies and command-and-control systems (no matter how primitive) that have governed traditional insurgent organizations.

Hoffman suggests the solution:

It is a battlefield situation that a conventional military often cannot cope with, and we must learn to adapt. We must build effective indigenous intelligence capabilities so that we can identify the signs of an incipient insurgency; establish, train, and forge close cooperative relations with a functioning and capable police force; improve the safety, security, and living conditions of the local population, thereby gaining their confidence; and take advantage of the training capabilities, language skills, and cultural awareness and sensitivities of American special-operations forces, whose mission specifically includes the training of foreign militaries. In the end, however, no matter how sophisticated a response we develop, and no matter how new the insurgents’ strategies are, a simple lesson that has been learned and forgotten again and again still applies: Don’t let insurgencies get started in the first place.

Sounds like the first rule of invading countries.

4 thoughts on “Plan of Attack: Bruce Hoffman”

  1. [quote]In the end, however, no matter how sophisticated a response we develop, and no matter how new the insurgents’ strategies are, a simple lesson that has been learned and forgotten again and again still applies: Don’t let insurgencies get started in the first place.[/quote]

    And this months winner of the “Stating the Obvious Award goes to…”

  2. Touche’ It struck me more like… “No matter what precautions you take, if you don’t want to get wet, don’t jump in the pool.”

    Stopping insurgencies is kind of like stopping water from being wet.

  3. Maybe he is suggesting that the initial parts of the war were fought incorrectly, more troops, securing arms stockpiles that have sinced disappeared..stuff like that?

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