Friday, January 31, 2014
Failing to Learn COIN Lessons (Again)
A retired military officer and scholar writes on how we will soon make the same mistake at the conclusion of the Afghan War that we made at the conclusion of the Vietnam War - not learning from lessons learned. A most excellent article. He cites some reasons for the neglecting of COIN lessons learned after Vietnam: the war was over, NATO had to be able to take on the Soviet Bloc in Europe, and the 1973 Arab-Israeli Conflict had shown the value of high-tech weaponry to defeat an enemy. The U.S. moved into the AirLand Battle doctrine which was Europe centric. The Army was convinced that the general purpose forces, if well-trained for conventional combat, could easily prevail in other cases or types of warfare. Read more in "Failure to Learn: Reflections on a Career in the Post-Vietnam Army", War on the Rocks, January 24, 2014.