Accession Number:



U.S. Government Counterinsurgency Guide

Descriptive Note:

[Technical Report, Special Report]

Corporate Author:

US Department of State

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Report Date:


Pagination or Media Count:



In recent years the United States has engaged in prolonged counterinsurgency campaigns in Afghanistan and Iraq. It has supported many other friendly governments facing internal subversion around the globe. In so doing it has both relearned old lessons, and forged new methods and concepts for the stabilization of moderate, freedom-oriented governments. This Guide, the first of its kind in almost half a century, distills the best of contemporary thought, historical knowledge, and hard-won practice. It is the best kind of doctrinal work intellectually rigorous, yet practical. insurgency, will flourish in the modern environment. The strains created by globalization, by the collapse of weak state structures, by demographic, environmental, and economic pressures, by the ease of cooperation among insurgent groupscriminals, and by the appearance of destructive radical ideologies, all augur a period in which free and moderate governance is at risk. And in todays world, state failure can quickly become not merely a misfortune for local communities, but a threat to global security.Whether the United States should engage in any particular counterinsurgency is a matter of political choice, but that it will engage in such conflicts during the decades to come is a near certainty. This Guide will help prepare decision-makers of many kinds for the tasks that will result from this fact. Like all such works, it will serve best if treated not as a rigidly defined set of recipes, but rather, as a stimulus to disciplined, but creative thought.

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Distribution Statement:

[A, Approved For Public Release]