Challenges with Counterinsurgency Doctrine in Afghanistan
ARMY WAR COLL CARLISLE BARRACKS PA
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Strategy is the alignment of ways and means to achieve the desired ends. In Afghanistan, the desired end state for the United States is the disruption and ultimate defeat of Al Qaeda. Though successful in Iraq, a counterinsurgency strategy is unlikely to succeed in Afghanistan given the politically driven timeline in which troops are expected to be withdrawn and the enormous cost required to sustain such a strategy. The strategy is straining the Armed Forces and the American coffers, and has yet to show enough progress to justify the costs, as measured in dollars and lives. Worse, the counterinsurgency strategy plays directly into the hands of an inferior enemy who, unable to defeat the U.S. directly, is attempting to do so indirectly through attrition of its national will and resources. An alternative strategy to COIN is that of counterterrorism CT. CT is a far more sustainable, flexible, and adaptable strategy ideally suited for combating terrorist networks.
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics
- Unconventional Warfare