Informal Governance as a Force Multiplier in Counterterrorism: Evidence for Burkina Faso   [open pdf - 1MB]

From the Introduction: "Eliminating or reducing the control, influence, and appeal of terrorist groups is an inherently political undertaking, not a technical problem of destroying, degrading, or disrupting a network faster than it can reconstitute. 'Joint Publication 3-26 Counterterrorism' (JP 3-26) plainly states, 'Terrorism is the unlawful use of violence or threat of violence, often motivated by religious, political, or other ideological beliefs, to instill fear and coerce governments or societies in pursuit of goals that are usually 'political' [emphasis added].' While the research and analysis that follows directly challenges the concept of 'ungoverned spaces' that JP 3-26 assumes to be an underlying problem, it does reinforce the idea that counterterrorism (CT) operations cannot achieve sustainable strategic effect without addressing the underlying conditions that make violence seem reasonable or rational to particular population groups. [...] From the perspective of politics, CT activities at best can only provide the space for political solutions to take hold over time; they cannot in and of themselves heal sociopolitical tensions. The emphasis on kinetic operations in CT among U.S. Special Operations Forces (SOF) has--since at least 2006--been both policy-based and cultural. Nevertheless, there have been calls for rebalancing SOF to give greater weight to non-kinetic, influence-oriented activities in the human domain."

Report Number:
JSOU Report 20-3: Joint Special Operations University Report 20-3
Public Domain
Retrieved From:
United States Special Operations Command Library: https://jsou.libguides.com/
Media Type:
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