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Counterinsurgency in CrisisBritain and the Challenges of Modern Warfare$
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David Ucko and Robert Egnell

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780231164276

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231164276.001.0001

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Whither British Counterinsurgency?

Whither British Counterinsurgency?

(p.145) 5 Whither British Counterinsurgency?
Counterinsurgency in Crisis

David H. Ucko

Robert Egnell

Columbia University Press

This chapter explains four major points that can be deduced from studying the counterinsurgency operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. The first point holds that the British failure during the early years of operations in Iraq and Afghanistan is, for the most part, informed by the notion of an innate British competence in the battlefield, which bred complacency in the armed forces. Secondly, it suggests a careful, developed, and sustained investment in finite resources such as money, labor, and material in order to effectively conduct counterinsurgency operations. Thirdly, it claims that the best military performance is complemented by political and civilian support. Finally, the chapter maintains that the British capacity for formulating a strategic operation plan has proved consistently problematic in these counterinsurgency operations.

Keywords:   Iraq counterinsurgency operations, Afghanistan counterinsurgency operations, British failure, British competence, Iraq, Afghanistan, military performance, political support, civilian support

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