I am a severe skeptic of the current COINdinista dominance of defense intellectual circles.
I found a terrific study that simply and courageously shreds the COIN mythos.
From the Political Impossibility of Modern COIN:
This brings us to our fourth broad theme. If counterinsurgency strongly intimates an underlying end-of-history premise, its rendering in scholarly inquiry offers an entirely fictitious understanding of historical completion. Here COIN theory’s capacity to mythologize the past, distort historical understanding, ignore contingency, and obscure complexity has been overwhelming. This is succinctly illustrated by the myth of British counterinsurgency recounted in chapter 4. Through constant repetition, analysts credited the British armed forces with a reputation for counterinsurgency expertise based on their experience with colonial warfare, particularly in winning over the population through techniques of minimum force and hearts and minds. Rarely was this reputation scrutinized. Commentators simply assumed the principle they had to prove.
It is well worth the read but for the readers who don’t have the time, just read the conclusion to the study.
This is a great corrective in the same character as Douglas Porch’s magisterial indictment in his counterinsurgency book.
The 21st century Western variation on colonial warfare (that’s all COIN is now) is simply parking a police state Deathstar over a nation-state, stirring the pot and wondering why the insurgency grows stronger over time as maimed and killed women & children steel the spine of the resistance and bum rush countless men into the ranks of what was a small but incipient insurgency.
Never doubt the Fed-god will make the same missteps, commit intellectual malpractice, encourage strategic deficit disorder and foster the incubation of myriad unintended consequences when the chickens come home to roost.
Leverage the over-reaction and brutality to your advantage.