Clear, Hold, Build: Modern Political Techniques in COIN
UNIV OF MILITARY INTELLIGENCE FORT HUACHUCA AZ
Pagination or Media Count:
Clear, Hold, Build is the stated policy and doctrine for the U.S. military to succeed in the counterinsurgency fight in Iraq. This paper discusses the leveraging of domestic political campaigning tools as a way to improve the Clear, Hold, Build strategy at the Brigade and Battalion level. The paper highlights the role of the S-2 in leveraging domestic political tools, how these tools might be used, and the importance of using political tools in a localized, proactive, and comprehensive approach. The Clear, Hold, Build method was doctrinally established in FM 3-24 and endorsed by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice in 2005. This tactic is divided into three phases 1 Clear the area by destroying, capturing, or forcing the withdrawal of insurgent combatants 2 Hold the area with security forces ideally host nation forces to effectively reestablish a host nation government presence at the local level and 3 Build support for the host nation government by protecting the populace and improving economic, social, cultural, and medical conditions. FM 3-24 provides the commander on the ground considerable freedom in deciding how to implement Clear, Hold, Build in his Area of Operations AO. Importantly, FM 3-24 cites the need for a coordinated Information Operations campaign at all stages to support the COIN effort. Also, it notes that the most important activities during the build stage are conducted by nonmilitary agencies. This statement highlights the importance of coordinating with groups that are not typically associated with military activities. Key to this coordination is leveraging assets that allow commanders to understand the social relationships in their AO.
- Information Science
- Unconventional Warfare