4-11-11 - 1 INSURGENCIES How do insurgencies arise...

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4/11/11 1. INSURGENCIES How do insurgencies arise? Insurgencies do not only take place in occupations. Coalition Casualties in Afghanistan vs. Iraq (85% is American) o 2001: 12/0 o 2002:70/0 o 2003: 58/580 o 2004: 60/906 o 2005: 131/897 o 2006: 191/872 o 2007: 232/961 o 2008: 295/322 o 2009: 521/150 o 2010: 711/60 o Insurgencies, not the major operational phase that cause casualties Insurgency —political military campaign by non-state actor that tries to overthrow a gov’t or secede from the country thru the use of unconventional military strategies or tactics. o = Asymmetric war = enemy is doing it on the cheap (i.e. use few people, and explosives) Precondition for outset of insurgency = weak governance 2 theories that explain insurgencies: o 1. Grievance theory of civil war: civil wars emerge b/c people have political, religious, ethnic grievances against each other. (Old theory) i.e. nationalism Problem with this reasoning is that there are far more grievances than insurgencies. So grievances = necessary but not sufficient factor. Also, can’t explain “why now?” when the war starts. o 2. Opportunity theory of insurgency/civil war: conjunction of grievances and the opportunity to express them Opportunity = weak state vacuum of power Also takes into account economic incentives: opportunity cost of insurgency is low b/c no jobs. (no other opportunities) o Evidence suggests the 2 nd theory is more accurate Why did insurgencies begin in Afghanistan and Iraq? o Grievances, weak central gov’t, lack of alternatives What is the role of ideology in all this? o Ideology plays a role in the leadership using ideology to motivate people to fight; plays less of a role in motivating the leaders themselves. How to solve the situation? o Solutions to insurgency: 1. Military route: root out insurgents, protect population and win their hearts and minds
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Problem: rate of success of counter-insurgencies decrease in 20 th century b/c mechanization of armed forces. Harder to do counter insurgencies b/c mechanized forces can’t get info about population and who are insurgents, heavy firepower violence used in a blind way So to win hearts and minds of population, indiscriminate violence does not work.
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