Fighting the Global War on Terror Tolerably: Augmenting the Global Counter Insurgency Strategy with Surrogates   [open pdf - 226KB]

"There is a long historical precedent of great powers utilizing surrogate forces as an economy of force measure in the pursuit of their objectives. The lessons learned during the ideological brush fire conflicts of the Cold War are relevant to the current ideological struggles of the GWOT [Global War on Terror]. The two case studies chosen for this paper are the French in Algeria 1954-1962 and the British in Oman/Dhofar 1965-1975. The scope of this study reviews three themes that run through the French and British utilization of surrogates and the potential applications for the US in the GWOT. The three themes are the recruitment of surrogates, their employment and the moral implications of adopting a surrogate based strategy. The current GWOT strategy of the United States has alienated allies, stretched her military resources thin and exacerbated chronic third world discontent with America. The primary aim of this paper is to review the potential use of surrogates as a lower profile and more cost effective approach to achieving American GWOT objectives. The way ahead is to train, equip and utilize indigenous forces to act for or in concert with US forces. The unrivaled combat power and efficiency of the US military dictates there is no surrogate force capable of operating replacing that level of operations, however in the COE [contemporary operational environment] the most important advantages a surrogate force offers are their non-kinetic operational multipliers. T.E. Lawrence's admonition that it is, 'Better the Arabs do it tolerably than that you do it perfectly' has grown even more applicable in the COE."

Public Domain
Retrieved From:
Combined Arms Research Library (CARL) Digital Library: http://cgsc.contentdm.oclc.org/cdm/
Media Type:
Help with citations