Assessing the Parameters for Determining Mission Accomplishment of the Philippine Marine Corps in Internal Security Operations
MARINE CORPS COMMAND AND STAFF COLL QUANTICO VA
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The Philippines Marine Corps has been fighting a war against internal threats who have achieved some degree of success in derailing Philippine prosperity for the past 38 years. The Marine Corps has perceived internal security operations ISO primarily as a mere force on force employment combat operations against armed internal threats and, to some extent, the occasional use of noncombat means civil-military operations to mitigate community life disruption as a result of the combat operations. The Marine Corps ISO are guided by the government-issued National Internal Security Plan NISP as well as the Operation Plan Bantay Laya that was crafted by the Armed Forces of the Philippines AFP as the security component to the NISP. Bantay Laya prescribes the use of three lines of operations to defeat the Communist Terrorist Movement CTM, the Moro Islamic Liberation Front MILF, the Abu Sayyaf Group ASG, and the Jemaah Islamiyah II. Lines of Operations prescribed by Bantay Laya include combat operations, intelligence operations, and civilian-military operations CMO. Although the most violent and extreme of all activities employed in counterinsurgency, the Marine Corps puts a premium on combat operations over other lines of operations in ISO. Military response is vital and necessary, but it is not a stand-alone solution to deter and crush insurgency. The success of the counterinsurgency against the HUKBALAHAP in the 1950s and the Indirect Approach to the Basilan Model in 2002 serve as lessons that winning the hearts and minds of the people from whom the insurgents derive their strength is the key to successful ISO. And winning hearts and minds can only be attained through robust civilian-military operations. Using a MOE for counterinsurgency set forth by U.S. Field Manual Number 3-24, CMO offers a measurable, discrete, relevant, and responsive approach to ISO.
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