1. What is the proper relationship between homeland security and homeland defense? How deeply can the armed forces be involved in support to civil authorities without becoming a potential threat to liberty?
  2. Where do we draw the balance between “offense” and “defense?” Should we focus more on one over the other, and if so, which one?

Lieutenant Colonel Gerald E. Galloway
United States Army
Colonel Paul C Jussel
Project Adviser
This SRP is submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements of the Master of Strategic Studies Degree.
The U.S. Army War College is accredited by the Commission on Higher Education of the Middle States
Association of Colleges and Schools, 3624 Market Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104, (215) 662-5606. The
Commission on Higher Education is an institutional accrediting agency recognized by the U.S. Secretary
of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation.
The views expressed in this student academic research paper are those of the author and do not reflect
the official policy or position of the Department of the Army, Department of Defense, or the U.S.
U.S. Army War College
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18 MAR 2005
Counterinsurgency Relearning How to Think
Gerald Galloway
U.S. Army War College,Carlisle Barracks,Carlisle,PA,17013-5050
Approved for public release; distribution unlimited
See attached.
19a. NAME OF
Standard Form 298 (Rev. 8-98)
Pirscribed by ANSI StdZ39-18
Lieutenant Colonel C Gerald E. Galloway
Counterinsurgency: Relearning How to Think
Strategy Research Project
18 March 2005
The U.S. military’s experience with insurgencies spans its history from the American
Revolution to its recent experiences in Iraq and Afghanistan. The current geostrategic
environment is fertile for global insurgency, primarily the threat of radical Islamic extremists who
have learned to leverage 21 st century technologies to enhance their strategic power projection
capability. This paper will examine the adequacy of current U.S. counterinsurgency strategic
policy, operational concepts and doctrine. Through the review of two case studies, the British
Army in Malaya 1948-1960 and the United States Army inthe Philippines 1898-1902, insights
for strategic leaders and planners will be gleaned and proposed for inclusion infuture doctrinal
PU RPOS E………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..
DEFENS E STRATEG Y……………………………………………………………………………………………………..
STRATEG Y TO C O NC EPT TO CA PA BILITIES ……………………………………………………………..
DO D STRATEG ICGUIDA NCE: ……………………………………………………………………………………
JOINT OPERATIO NS CO NC EPTS ……………………………………………………………………………….
DO CTRIN E ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….
JO INT DO CTR INE……………………………………………………………………………………………………………
SERV ICE DO CTRIN E ………………………………………………………………………………………………………
PLA NN ING……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….
HISTO RICA L CASE STUDIES ……………………………………………………………………………………..
BR ITISH ARM Y IN MALAYA 1948-1960 ……………………………………………………………………..
Historical Context ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………
Nature of the Insurgency ………………………………………………………………………………………..
Counterinsurgency Strategy ……………………………………………………………………………………
Lessons ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..
UNITED STATES ARMY IN THE PHILIPPINES 1898-1902 ……………………………………..
Historical Context …………………………………………………………………………………………………………
Nature of the Insurgency ………………………………………………………………………………………..
Counterinsurgency Strategy ……………………………………………………………………………………
Lessons ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..
RECO MMEN DATIO NS ………………………………………………………………………………………………
CO NC LUSIO N ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..
ENDNOTES …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….
The enemies that we face today for the most part do not have large standing
forces or, in some cases, even territory to defend. They know they cannot defeat
us on the battlefield, so they choose to fight us in less conventional ways-ways
that play to their strengths not ours. We owe our forces the utmost sense of
urgency in the tough process of transforming to meet the challenges of the 21 st
century. 1
– Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, 21 DEC 04
The U.S. military’s experience with insurgencies spans its history from the American
Revolution to its recent experiences in Iraq and Afghanistan. The current geostrategic
environment is fertile for global insurgency, primarily the threat of radical Islamic extremists who
have learned to leverage 21 st century technologies to enhance their strategic power projection
capability. Department of Defense (DoD) has recognized these emerging threats, has labeled
them as irregular security challenges, and appears to have prioritized them ahead of traditional
conventional challenges.2 Dr Stephen Metz and LTC Raymond Millen, analysts at the U.S.
Army War College’s Strategic Studies Institute, have described the current period as an “age of
insurgency,” similar to the period 1950s to 1980s, and indicate that this period will continue for
the several decades? To meet these challenges, civilian and military leaders and planners
must change the way they think about the complex challenges of prosecuting a
counterinsurgency campaign. Strategic policy makers must question the viability of achieving
victory over a global insurgency or just managing it to some acceptable level. In the end,
leaders and planners must review and, where necessary, refine or adapt their strategy,
operational concepts, doctrine, and organizations to address the global insurgency
environment.4 When doing so, they must lift the right lessons from history and be cautious not
to provide prescriptive solutions but principles. DoD transformational efforts only partially
address the current gap between strategy and capabilities.
This paper will examine the adequacy of current U.S. counterinsurgency strategic policy,
operational concepts, and doctrine and then through analysis of two case studies, the British
Army in Malaya 1948-1960 and the United States Army in the Philippines 1898-1902, provide
insights for strategic leaders and planners and proposals for inclusion infuture doctrinal
Recent operations have exposed gaps in our current strategic policy. Senior leaders
interviewed after the end of major combat operations indicated that the Army and DoD sought to
develop counterinsurgency strategy early in the war, but other elements of government were
unprepared. They claimed that no strategic policy guidance was available to the commanders
in Iraq so military operations could be coordinated with strategic policy objectives for the
Battles are won through the ability of men to express concrete ideas in clear
unmistakable language.6
– BG S. L. A. Marshall
The terms insurgency and counterinsurgency have long been a part of the military lexicon,
yet are not well understood by conventional civilian and military leaders and planners because
their use has been dormant for three decades. During the early stages of the recent insurgency
in Iraq senior leadership struggled with the language of war. DoD news releases avoided the
term guerrilla in favor of terrorist.7 Within the spectrum of conflict, counterinsurgency has been
subordinated under the heading stability and support operations but can occur across the
spectrum of conflict. Joint Pub 1-02 defines insurgency as “an organized movement aimed at
the overthrow of a constituted government through use of subversion and armed conflict.” It
defines counterinsurgency as “those military, paramilitary, political, economic, psychological,
and civic actions taken by a government to defeat insurgency.”8 These definitions are dated
and should be changed to reflect 21st century insurgency and counterinsurgency strategy. A
better definition of insurgency has been offered by Dr. Metz: “Insurgency is a strategy in which
the weak use various forms of protracted asymmetric violence, psychological conflict, and a
radical counter ideology to alter the balance of power in their favor” ‘
For the purpose of this paper, the terms terrorist and insurgent are interchangeable. JP 1 02 defines terrorism as “the calculated use of unlawful violence or threat of unlawful violence to
inculcate fear; intended to coerce or to intimidate governments or societies in the pursuit of
goals that are generally political, religious, or ideological” and a terrorist as “an individual who
uses violence, terror, and intimidation to achieve a result.” 10
The Defense Strategy must change to reflect 21st century global threat capabilities. The
National Security Strategy of the United States of America 2002 (NSS), National Military
Strategy 2004 (NMS) and the 2003 DoD Transformation Planning Guidance (TPG) are policy
documents that provide overarching strategic guidance for the military. ” They serve as a
method for the President of the United States and Secretary of Defense (SECDEF) to define
national security and military objectives and describe ends, ways, and means. These
documents make reference to the threat of global terrorism but ignore the use of the terms
insurgency and counterinsurgency.
The NSS describes the need to operate across the full spectrum of conflict with a priority
to winning the war on global terrorism. The NSS makes no use of the terms insurgency or
counterinsurgency, but instead describes the current threat to the United States as terrorists
with global reach. It then describes a strategy to attack this threat:
The struggle against global terrorism is different from any other war in our
history. It will be fought on many fronts against a particularly elusive enemy over
an extended period of time. Progress will come through the persistent
accumulation of successes-some seen, some unseen.”…”Our priority will be
first to disrupt and destroy terrorist organizations of global reach and attack their
leadership; command, control, and communications; material support; and
finances. This will have a disabling effect upon the terrorists’ ability to plan and
operate. 12
The current U.S. strategy to combat the “war on terror” (global insurgency) appears to be
a strategy of victory vice containment or management. A strategy of victory envisions total
defeat, while management is simply containing or fighting terrorists in places where there are
U.S. interests. The strategy of victory is risky, overly ambitious, and most likely unattainable
given the breadth of the problem. During an April 2004 Strategy Conference at Carlisle
Barracks PA, Dr Metz led a panel discussion on U.S. strategies for combating insurgency and
terrorism. Dr Metz indicated that the United States currently has declared a strategy of victory
versus management in what we now call the war on terror. He appears to advocate a strategy
of management and suggests that a strategy of victory might be too costly and would require
greater degree of transformational movement than currently planned.13
The NMS provides the military strategy to meet national objectives. The NMS all but
ignores the counterinsurgency problem. The NMS, just as the NSS, makes no direct mention of
the terms insurgency or counterinsurgency, yet describes a war of terror, irregular challenges,
and unconventional methods adopted and employed by non-state and state actors to counter
stronger state opponents. The excerpt below from the NMS highlights the military’s role in
combating global insurgency and stresses the importance of other agencies, partners and host
nations. “More directly, deployed military units will work closely with international partners and
other US government agencies to take the battle to the enemy – engaging terrorist forces,
terrorist collaborators and those governments harboring terrorists.”1 4
The DoD Strategic Planning Guidance (SPG) provides strategic direction and informs
future DoD plans and resourcing. The discussion of the details of the SPG is beyond the scope
of this paper, but the construct from which the plan was developed merits review. The 20062011 SPG categorized four major security challenges: traditional, irregular, catastrophic and
disruptive. Traditional challenges include conventional forces threats that are imposed by well
recognized armies, such as North Korea and irregular threats including state and non-state
actors using unconventional methods to counter our traditional advantages. The insurgency in
Iraq fits into this category. Catastrophic challenges include the concept of terrorist acquisition,
possession, and possible employment of Weapons of Mass destruction-like effects against
vulnerable, high-profile targets. Finally, disruptive challenges include competitors developing
and possessing breakthrough technological capabilities intended to negate U.S. operational
advantages.15 The 2005 Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR), a DoD analysis of the national
defense strategy scheduled to be published in the Fall 2005 is anticipated to acknowledge the
changing global security environment shifting focus from traditional to irregular threats. The
2005 QDR provides the opportunity to continue to steer DoD transformation.16
The 2002 NSS directed the military of the United States to transform in order to meet 21
century threats.”7 The TPG directed change in three areas: how we fight, how we work, and how
we work with other agencies and multinational partners. DoD transformation must occur in
areas other than equipment and organizations. Current transformation language reflects a shift
from a threat based to capabilities based approach in how the military determines concepts and
capabilities necessary to face
2 1St
century challenges.”8
In order to defeat the capabilities of the 21 St century global insurgent, military strategists
and planners must reassess current tactical, operational and strategic operational concepts.
At the strategic level, Joint Operations Concepts drive changes in doctrine, organization,
training, leadership, materiel, personnel, and facilities. Joint Operating Concepts (JOCs) are
designed to provide an operational level description of how Joint Force Commander 10-20
years in the future will accomplish a strategic objective through the conduct of operations within
a military campaign.1 9 The 2003 DOD Transformation Planning Guidance provided four initial
JOC categories: Major Combat Operations, Stability Operations, Homeland Security, and
Strategic Deterrence. Counterinsurgency operations fall under the Stability Operations JOC, yet
can occur as a part of Major Combat Operations, Homeland Security and Strategic Deterrence.
Emerging JOCs must consider the possibility of counterinsurgency operations occurring across
the range of operations and spectrum of conflict.20
JP 1-02 defines doctrine as: “the fundamental principles by which military forces or
elements thereof guide their actions in support of national objectives. Doctrine is authoritative,
but not prescriptive. Doctrine provides a framework for how to think.” 21 Joint and service
doctrine evolves from joint concepts and must be continually reviewed for relevance. Existing
counterinsurgency doctrine is thin and is based on a Maoist model insurgency (an insurgency
with clear political objectives, central leadership and a long term strategy). Doctrine must be
updated to reflect projected 21 st century irregular challenges that include loosely networked
insurgencies with global reach.
Current gaps in counterinsurgency doctrine are a direct result of thirty years of neglect
and have resulted in training and force structure shortfalls.
At the operational and tactical
level recent experiences in Iraq and Afghanistan have produced tactics, techniques, and
procedures (TTPs) that should be considered when updating current counterinsurgency
doctrine. Two of the four services, the Army and Marines, are developing doctrinal publications
to address counterinsurgency. 24 The Army and the Marines have clearly taken the lead in
doctrinal transformation.
Of the 112 Joint Publications currently approved or in development, there is no single
Joint manual that provides the Joint force commander with guidance and principles for
conducting counterinsurgency operations. 25 The four Joint doctrinal publications that address
counterinsurgency provide little substance for regional combatant commanders and their staffs.
Some military doctrine writers have characterized existing joint publications as confusing,
disjointed, and hollow and acknowledged receiving similar comments from planners and
operators in the field.?
JP 3-07.1 Joint Tactics Techniques and Proceduresfor Foreign InternalDefense (FID)
30 April, 2004 is the most recently published joint manual addressing counterinsurgency. The
manual discusses counterinsurgency operations in the context of Foreign Internal Defense, a
mission historically performed by Special Operations Forces. JP 3-07, JointDoctrinefor Military
OperationsOther Than War, 16 June 1995specifies joint doctrine for Military Operations Other
than War and mentions counterinsurgency in the context of spectrum of conflict. It provides little
more than a definition of nation assistance/support to counterinsurgency. In an attempt to
provide an example of a historical counterinsurgency operation, the manual uses Operation
PROMOTE LIBERTY, in 1990, following Operation JUST CAUSE in Panama. JP 3.08,
Interagency CoordinationDuringJointOperations, 8 February 2001 describes the strategic
context for coordination between government agencies and identifies the fundamental principles
that a joint force commander may employ in gaining interagency cooperation to accomplish a
Finally, JP3-57, JointDoctrine for Civil Military Operations,8 February, 2001 is helpful in
understanding civil military organizations command relationships and planning that are
fundamental for counterinsurgency operations. Many of the concepts presented in this manual
were born out of success from historical experiences in counterinsurgency operations.
Existing service doctrinal publications are dated and require revision. LTG William A.
Wallace, the former V Corps Army commander who led the recent U.S. Iraqi ground invasion,
found current counterinsurgency doctrine inadequate. In his new position as commander of the
Combined Arms Center, Ft Leavenworth, Kansas he is driving doctrinal changes to reflect the
21st century operational environment. The U.S. Army Interim FieldManual3-07.22,
CounterinsurgencyOperations,dated October 2004 and the Marine Corps Small Wars Manual
(Draft) dated January 2004 are examples of efforts to refine doctrine. These publications are
currently being staffed across the services and have been released to the field for comment.
Field Manual Interim (FMI) 3-07.22, presents TTP and doctrine for military operations in a
counterinsurgency environment. The manual incorporates lessons from recent military
operations and historical counterinsurgency operations. FMI 3-07.22describes
counterinsurgency as an offensive operation involving all elements of national power,
highlighting that it can take place across the range of operations and spectrum of conflict. It falls
short in outlining a single set of principles for the operational or tactical commander.
In January, 2005 the Army formed the Asymmetric Warfare Group (AWG), an organization
designed to study 21 St century unconventional threats. The AWG is made up of about 300
personnel, headed by a U.S. Army Colonel and is staffed by both Army personnel and civilian
contractors. The AWG will take a holistic approach to the threat, by considering information,
intelligence, culture, training and technology in developing solutions. Its mission is two-fold,
share lessons learned with the field, and inform future doctrine.28
The Marine Corps Small Wars Manual originally published in 1940, republished in 1987
and currently in a revised draft provides operational and tactical level leaders and planners with
enduring principles for the planning conduct of counterinsurgency operations. The 2004 draft
manual incorporates recent lessons learned in Iraq and Afghanistan as well as principles
learned from U.S. and UK historical experiences. The manual recognizes the changing nature
of the
2 1St
century insurgent.29
In an effort to hurdle normal bureaucratic procedures for publishing doctrinal manuals and
sharing information, the Marine Corps developed a Marine Corps Small Wars Center of
Excellence interactive website containing TTP, lessons learned, and professional readings on
Small Wars. 0
In war nothing is achieved except by calculation. Everything that is not soundly
planned in its details yields no results.”
– Napoleon, 18 September 1806
Counterinsurgency operations are complex and political by nature; therefore,
counterinsurgency planning can not be left to the military alone and must involve all elements of
national power. The problem is that historically the military has taken the lead in all aspects of
planning. The Beyond Goldwater- Nichols (BG-N) study team, charged by the U.S. government
to look at defense reform, acknowledged this problem and commented that across government
agencies, there is no planning culture outside the DOD. Interagency planners are key players
during counterinsurgency planning and during certain stages may need to take the lead. The
BG-N team made particular note of this requirement. The BG-N Phase I report recommended
four major initiatives to improve interagency planning. First, that the President establish a
Deputy assistant to the President on the National Security Council (NSC) staff as the lead for
integrating agency strategies and planning. Second, that the President establish a NSC
planning office for stability operations. Third, that key agencies establish planning cells. The
team’s final recommendation indicated that for each operation the President should hold one
senior official accountable for integrating U.S. interagency operations.32
The process of planning at the strategic level has been improved. At the Joint Staff and
Regional Combatant Command level, the recent modifications of the deliberate planning and
crisis action planning directed by DOD have resulted in a planning process that is shorter,
adaptive, and is better suited for the volatile and uncertain 21
St century
Regional combatant commanders are responsible for conducting (planning,
preparing, executing, and assessing) military operations in their areas of
responsibility in support of counterinsurgency. Close coordination with the US
ambassador or diplomatic representative and country team within supported HNs
is essential in order to build an effective regional counterinsurgency program.”3
The following imperatives hold true at all levels of planning. First of all and most
important, current U.S. military doctrinal guidance states that the overarching principle for
counterinsurgency planners is that responsibility for Internal Defense and Development (IDAD)
ultimately should fall within the purview of the host nation. All aspects of planning must support
this principle. Counterinsurgency missions are inherently political in nature, thus, require
coordination between the military and the Host Nation, interagency and country teams. When
developing U.S. assistance programs, planners must consider long term effects. Assistance
programs must support the overall campaign and must lead to Host Nation self sufficiency.
Finally, planners must develop operational relationships between the military and other players
such as non governmental organizations.
Former Central Command commander General Anthony Zinni, USMC, (RET), described
the challenges inherent in operations that involve a high degree of civil military planning and the
need to establish formal civil military relationships. “There is a history of relearning the
requirement for and the modalities of civil military operations about as often as there is a major
change of command or new complex contingency.” “The status quo is [ad hoc] every time. So
in the next conference, someone will say that they have just discovered NGOs, just discovered
that they are different, just discovered that you actually need to coordinate with them…. There
needs to be change.
Regional combat commanders require an increase in staffing, specifically interagency and
humanitarian advisors/planners. Existing arrangements between military planners and
interagency at the regional combatant command level are insufficient. The current structure
provides the Combatant Commander with a Political Advisor and a regional country team. This
structure facilitates coordination during planning, but does not provide the depth in interagency
and humanitarian functional expertise required to conduct mission planning. 6
After the events on September 11, 2001 the DOD realized that there was a great need for
improvement in interagency cooperation. The Joint Interagency Coordination Groups (JIACGs)
concept came about to bridge the gap between military and civilian planning.37 In 2002, the
Joint Requirements Oversight Council (JROC) approved Joint Forces Command (JFCOM)
JIACG prototypes and directed experimentation. JFCOM is currently preparing a fielding plan
for SECDEF review. If approved as a permanent Combatant Command staff element, the
JIACG will greatly enhance combatant commander’s planning capabilities by providing
improved information sharing, adaptive civil military planning and rehearsal planning.3 8 Phase II
of the BG-N study team is reviewing existing combatant regional command structures and will
provide recommendations to improve existing structures2a9
History taken in the proper context can help inform the future. Two case studies in
counterinsurgency, the British Army in Malayal 948-1960 and the United States Army in the
Philippines 1898-1902, provide leaders and planners unique insights into such warfare. These
case studies describe how two armies learned to adapt, change and in the end succeed.
Lessons learned are not presented as prescriptive solutions, but are intended to be used as a
construct to frame contemporary problems -how to think versus what to do.40
The British have a wealth of experience and have enjoyed considerable success in
counterinsurgency operations. Their counterinsurgency experience spans over fifty years with
operations ranging from Palestine, Cyprus and Kenya in the late 1940s and 1 950s, to current
operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. During the post WW IIperiod, 1948-1960, the British found
themselves fighting a communist insurgency in Malaya. This was an insurgency that they were
not prepared to fight. During the twelve year conflict, the British learned to adapt, that
conventional methods would not work against an unconventional threat, and that
counterinsurgency strategies must consider civil-military relationships.41
Historical Context
British influence in Malaya dates back to the late eighteenth century, when colonial
interests included mining and rubber plantations. The British would maintain a small military
and civilian presence in Malaya until 1945 when they would return in greater numbers.42
Following World War II,when most of the British attention and efforts were focused on the
reconstruction of their own homeland, Britain became involved in a small war in Malay, often
referred to as the Malayan Emergency. This British experience in Malaya provides insights into
counterinsurgency operations. 3
In 1948 Malaya was a pluralist society represented by a 49 percent Malayan, 38 percent
Chinese, and 11 percent Indian population. Malaya was facing a growing communist
insurgency from the Malayan Peoples Anti-British Army (MPABA), the military arm of the
Malayan Communist Party (MCP), but had not realized the magnitude of the problem. To
prosecute the campaign, the Federation army had at their disposal about 4000 soldiers
belonging to ten battalions: two British, five Gurka and three Malay. The primary mission of this
force was to conduct security operations against the 4000 MPABA insurgents. After about three
months into the insurgency, the Federation formed a constabulary force of about 24,000 to
perform passive security operations. This freed the Federation army from these duties, allowing
itto perform active patrolling. The heart of the Malayan security force was the Malaya
Federation Police headed by Colonel W.N. Gray, a British officer and the former inspector
general of the Palestinian police. To emphasize that the military was working for a civil
authority, all counterinsurgency operations fell under Gray. 4 Military efforts were led by
General Boucher, General Officer Commanding of Malaya.45 By the end of 1948 security forces
would reach about 25,000 strong, outnumbering the insurgents five to one. 46 At the top,
counterinsurgency efforts were being led by Sir Edward Gent, High Commissioner and retired
Lieutenant Colonel Sir Harold Briggs, Director of Operations.41
Nature of the Insurgency
The MCP, originally established in the early 1930’s, was supported by the Chinese and
was the root of the Malayan insurgency. During WWII, the MCP’s military arm, the Malayan’s
People’s Anti Japanese Army (MPAJA), was trained and supported by the British to fight the
Japanese in Malaya. Following the defeat of the Japanese in Malaya in 1945, the MPAJA was
officially disbanded, cached their weapons and continued to exist as a shadow organization.
The Chinese and the MCP quickly grew disenchanted with British rule and the idea of the
Malayan people gaining sovereignty. 48 By 1948, the MPABA, formally known as the MPAJA
were involved in a full scale insurgency in Malaya. They chose a strategy of protracted guerilla
warfare to defeat the British. On 16 June, 1948 three European workers were killed by MPABA
insurgents. This incident, sparked the Emergency, and resulted in the British total commitment
to the Malayan effort.
Counterinsurgency Strategy
The British Declaration of Emergency by Gent marginalized the MCP by imposing
restrictions just short of martial law. The declaration allowed the British to impose the death
penalty on those caught with illegal weapons, detain suspected insurgents, conduct searches
without a warrant, and occupy land as they deemed necessary. 50 Having lost the confidence of
the British leadership, Gent was replaced by Sir Henry Gurney as High Commissioner in July
During the first two years of the Emergency, the counterinsurgency failed to produce
results. This failure can be attributed to three factors. At the strategic level the
counterinsurgency efforts lacked the full backing of British government. At the operational and
tactical level the application of conventional maneuver techniques and tactics learned during
WWII would not work against an insurgent who practiced asymmetric tactics. Finally the
operation lacked cooperation and unity of effort between civil and military officials. Too much
energy was focused on defeating the insurgent rather than the political cause.
By 1950 the strategic tide of the counterinsurgency would begin to change. Recognizing
that the counterinsurgency efforts lacked true unity of effort, Sir Harold Briggs established the
Federal War Council. This organization had subordinate structures at the state and district
levels. The council’s single purpose was to coordinate the efforts between police, military and
other civilian organizations. Furthermore, Briggs implemented the blueprint for the
counterinsurgency operations known as the Briggs plan. The Briggs plan reorganized the
government and put it in charge of the counterinsurgency. The plan had three major objectives:
security of Malayan citizens through resettlement, clearing out insurgent infrastructure and civil
military cooperation. Even with the implementation of these initiatives, it is important to note
that under existing arrangements, Briggs had no control over the military. ”
The turning point in the counterinsurgency came in October 1951 after High
Commissioner Sir Henry Gurney was murdered by insurgents. This event caused the British to
reassess the Malaya mission. On 23 December, 1951 British senior leaders, Prime Minister
Churchill, Field Marshall Montgomery and Colonial Secretary Oliver Lyttelton met to discuss the
Malaya conflict. Shortly after this meeting, Field Marshall Montgomery laid out a strategic
direction in a short correspondence to Secretary Lyttelton. “Dear Lyttellen, Malaya, We must
have a plan. Secondly we must have a man. When we have a plan and a man, we shall
succeed: not otherwise.” 54 The British government chose General Sir Harold Templer to be “the
man”. General Templer replaced Briggs in 1951 as Director of Operations but also assumed
the position of High Commissioner. Unlike Briggs, in this position he had control over both
civilian and military. This new relationship facilitated command and control and provided unity
of effort.55
Soon after assuming his new position, Templer delivered his strategic message to the
Malayan people. His simple but powerful message stated that the British had no plan to
permanently stay in Malaya. Templer set no time line for British withdrawal, but instead set
conditions for withdrawal. His conditions for withdrawal were the establishment of local law, the
creation of a functional judicial system, freedom of movement for all people, and the creation of
a national army. Simply put, he wanted to put power in the hands of the people.
At the strategic level Templer’s plan continued to be carried out by the Federal War
Council. This council not only included British representatives but national leaders from Chinese
and Malaya communities. This was a true combined civil-military organization.57
After nearly four years of applying conventional methods and selected elements of the
Briggs plan, British operational and tactical level commanders learned that the key to success
would be the enlistment of services from the indigenous population. The British empowered
local police as well as other civic leaders. This arrangement was critical in the gathering of
intelligence and the execution of the information campaign.
As a former intelligence director, Templer realized the value of intelligence. Templer built
upon Brigg’s intelligence initiatives and created a Directorate of Intelligence. The mission of the
Intelligence Directorate was to coordinate and synchronize all intelligence activities with the
overall plan. Intelligence successes were due to the good relationships between the formal
intelligence services and the local police. Local police had a good handle on the pulse of the
people and frequently passed valuable actionable intelligence. 58 Another success story was the
employment of psychological operations against the insurgents and the civilian population. The
British used psychological operations in an effort to persuade the insurgents to surrender and to
win the “hearts and minds” of uncommitted civilians. The psychological operations campaign
fell under the direction of the British Information Service and included the use of leaflets, loud
speaker teams, government films and the press.59
By 1953, Templer had created “White Areas,” zones where civilians achieved a greater
independence; they were curfew free and enjoyed freedom of movement. The creation of these
areas had a positive effect on the people brining an increased level of support to the insurgency.
When Templer left Malaya in 1954, major conflict was winding down and the insurgency was
losing its effect. The Malayans gained their independence on 31 August 1957, but the
insurgency would drag on for the following three years. 1
In the end, the British success’s can be attributed to the execution of a balanced civilmilitary approach to the insurgency. Over the twelve year period, they recognized the need for
a change in strategy as well as tactics techniques and procedures. The British adapted as an
organization developing enduring principles and doctrine for counterinsurgency.
Sir Robert Thompson, Permanent Secretary of Defense for Malaya during the Emergency,
developed important principles for counterinsurgency operations. These principles provide a
solid framework for addressing lessons learned in Malaya. Principle 1, establish a political aim
and ensure that the public, civil authorities, and the military know what it is. The British did this
well with Brigg’s and Templer’s declarations. Principle 2, the military plan must be subordinate
to the political plan. The British accomplished this by designing an organization and plan where
the military was subordinate to the political. Principle 3, parties must be familiar with and
conduct themselves in accordance with the law. This started with the declaration of the
Emergency, a plan that imposed a set of rules that were well understood by military and civilian
leaders as well as the civilian local and insurgent population. Principle 4, there can only be one
plan and this plan must incorporate information and human intelligence. The British combined
the efforts of the British Intelligence and Information services with information provided by local
civilians, police and captured insurgents to produce actionable intelligence. Principle 5 is
security. The British plan accounted for the protection of civilians, military and key infrastructure
to include military bases. Principle 6 emphasizes attacking the insurgent indirectly. The British
attacked the insurgents indirectly by targeting the insurgent’s economic base of support,
logistical support, and legitimacy. 61
The U.S. experience inthe Philippine War from 1898-1902 provides civilian and military
leaders and planners with tactical, operational, and strategic lessons incounterinsurgency
operations. During the Philippine conflict, the U.S. relearned old lessons and discovered new
ones. While entering the conflict without formal counterinsurgency doctrine, victory came chiefly
because of ability of leaders at the tactical level to adapt. Poor strategic guidance from
Washington and broad operational level guidance from commanders who were often out of
touch with the situation on the ground resulted in a tough slog, but inthe end a victory for the
U.S. 62
Historical Context
In 1896, a rebellion broke out between the Katipunans, a secret Philippine society and
their Spanish occupiers over Spanish rule. The revolution would continue to grow during U.S.
occupation in 1898 and would become the root cause of the Philippine insurgency. 63
As part of the Spanish American War, on January 1898, the acting Secretary of the Navy
Theodore Roosevelt provided orders to his commanders to prepare to execute existing war
plans against the Spanish in Cuba and the Pacific. These plans included a naval attack in the
Pacific to destroy the Spanish fleet and occupation of Manila in the Philippines. Destruction of
the Spanish fleet in the Pacific would serve to cut off Spanish revenues from the Philippines. In
May 1898 President McKinley approved the naval expedition led by Commodore George Dewey
to carry out the naval war plans in the Pacific. Dewey attacked and easily defeated the Spanish
fleet in Manila Bay. Dewey found that his orders to occupy Manila would be difficult, because
he did not have sufficient ground forces. For this reason, Dewey requested that army forces be
sent to the theater. 64
On 12 May 1898, President McKinley appointed Major General Wesley Merritt military
governor and commander of U.S. Forces Philippines. 65 From the very outset of the war, the
President failed to grasp the complexities of the conflict and provided his senior military leaders
with only general guidance. His failure upfront to define political objectives caused confusion for
military commanders and only served to draw out the initial stages of the conflict. For example,
in early correspondence with the President, General Merritt requested specific mission intent for
the expedition. Merritt asked McKinley whether the objective of the mission was to seize the
capital Manila or all of the islands. McKinley failed to provide Merritt with an answer. It is
unclear whether McKinley was trying to keep his options open or was just indecisive. On 19 May
1898 McKinley directed Major General Merritt to accomplish two tasks, complete the reduction
of Spanish power and provide security for the Philippine Islands. The first task would be
accomplished in short order, but the second task was not possible given the vast size of the
Philippine Islands. McKinley’s direction to Merritt to secure the islands demonstrated his lack of
understanding of Merritt’s capabilities and the operational environment.
The initial contingent of U.S. forces arrived in the Philippines in late June 1898 under the
command of BG Thomas Anderson. In an attempt to asses the mood of the Filipino people, BG
Anderson met with Emilio Aguinaldo the recently returned and self declared Philippine leader.
After initial dialogue, Anderson realized that Aguinaldo would settle for nothing short of an
independent Philippines under his control. BG Anderson refused to recognize Aguinaldo’s
authority. Anderson’s failure to acknowledge Aguinaldo as a legitimate leader was the spark
that ignited the insurgency. 67
On 13 August 1898 Merritt’s ground forces captured Manila, liberating the Philippines from
the Spanish. Soon after the U.S. occupation, Merritt declared to the Philippine people that the
U.S. had no intention of waging war against the Filipino people and that the U.S. would ensure
their personal and religious rights. On 29 August 1898 Major General Elwell S. Otis, Merritt’s
second in command took over operations in the Philippines.68
The Treaty of Paris signed 10 December 1898 transferred sovereignty of the Philippines
from Spain to the U.S. and provided a strategically significant permanent U.S. base in the
Pacific. President McKinley declared that the U.S. policy in the Philippines was to: protect
Philippine civilians, preserve property and individual rights, open ports to commerce, and collect
taxes. In the conduct of administrative duties, McKinley stressed the importance of winning the
confidence of the Philippine people.69
Nature of the Insurgency
Tensions continued to grow between those Filipinos loyal to Aguinaldo and the U.S. due
to the U.S. declaration of sovereignty, and the refusal to recognize Aguinaldo’s government or
military. On 4 February 1899, a U.S. patrol fired on and killed a Filipino patrol. This act officially
marked the beginning of the insurgency. 70
Counterinsurgency Strategy
During the early years of the campaign, commanders attempted to win the “hearts and
minds” of the Filipino people through a strategy of benevolent assimilation. In 1899 the U.S.
military in conjunction with civil authorities created municipal governments. General Otis issued
instructions for establishment of municipal governments utilizing General Orders 43 (1899) and
40 (1900). These two orders provided commanders instruction for the development and
administration of municipal governments. Each municipality or district consisted of a mayor,
town council and police. The U.S. quickly learned that the empowered leaders of the
municipalities were critical in understanding and controlling the Filipino people. To facilitate
oversight over the municipalities the Army reorganized their brigades, broke them down to
company level and garrisoned them near cities in order to coordinate civic and military matters
and provide security. 71 By the close of 1900, the U.S. Army had established over four hundred
garrisons in the Philippines.72
During the first year of the campaign, the 26,000 U.S. military out fought the insurgents in
a series of conventional military battles but had over extended themselves.73 By May 1900, the
Filipino national army was defeated, but Aguinaldo’s irregular guerrilla forces had retreated from
the cities to the mountains and jungles to regroup. Otis, feeling success, failed to recognize
Aguinaldo’s shift to guerilla warfare and the growing insurgency that would ensue.74 Like the
U.S., Aguinaldo’s guerrillas operated relatively autonomously and were organized by region. An
additional challenge faced by the U.S. forces was clandestine civil military organizations that
operated in the cities.75
The period 1900 to 1902 marked the height of the insurgency. In May 1900, Otis was
replaced by General Arthur MacArthur who quickly recognized the brewing insurgency. The
senior civilian leader at this time was William Howard Taft, chief of the Philippine commission.
The commission had the responsibility of governing pacified regions.76 Recognizing the
heightened level of insurgency and sensing that the majority of Filipinos were siding with the
insurgents, MacArthur adopted a more stringent pacification policy. 77 As a strategy to enforce
his policies, MacArthur used General Order 100, an order originally issued during the Civil War
to govern the actions of soldiers when dealing with civilians and combatants. General Order
100, for all intent and purposes, was the Army’s law of warfare. It was used to protect Filipino
civilian’s civil rights but at the same justified harsher treatment of insurgents or traitors.
Macarthur’s commanders utilized the provisions of General Order 100 to isolate the insurgents
from the local population. Executed through a variety of methods ranging from civilian
relocation to destruction of enemy sanctuaries, tactical commanders separated the insurgents
from the population.78 MacArthur’s commanders clearly understood that the success of the
counterinsurgency lay in the hands of the Filipino people. The insurgents understood the same
and resorted to a combination of intimidation and propaganda to influence the Filipino people.79
Intelligence operations proved key during the counterinsurgency. Although national and
regional intelligence organizations were created, most operations were decentralized and
executed at the tactical level. Tactical commanders used a combination of informants, native
scouts, and spies to gather intelligence.80 Aguinaldo’s capture in April 1901 illustrates the U.S.
superior intelligence system. U.S. soldiers acting on information from a local commander
captured documents from Aguinaldo’s headquarters. With this information, U.S. soldiers and
Filipino scouts executed a raid and captured Aguinaldo without incident. 81 Shortly after his
capture, on 19 April 1901 Aguinaldo issued a proclamation to the Filipino people recognizing
U.S. sovereignty, this would signal the downfall but not the end of the insurgency. 82
During the next 15 months, efforts to stem the insurgency would continue under the
leadership of MacArthur’s replacement, General Adna R. Chaffee. General Chaffee continued
many of the policies of his predecessor and at the same time he greatly increased the pressure
on both the insurgents and civilians. His efforts resulted in convincing the Filipino people to side
with the U.S., destruction of the insurgents and brought about an end to the war by 4 July,
Ultimately, the successful counterinsurgency can be credited to innovative and adaptive
commanders at tactical level who operated in a decentralized manner, were indirect contact
with the population and understood the culture. These leaders often located in remote garrisons
far from their superiors, carried out the civil-military policies provided by their strategic and
operational commanders. 4 Tactical commanders were able to translate vague strategic
guidance, broad operational guidance and achieve tactical successes. At the strategic and
operational level there was friction between the U.S. military and the U.S. civil administration
over ultimate authority. The concept developed by McKinley was that once an area was
pacified by the military, it fell under the authority of the civil government, inthis case William
Howard Taft, the appointed governor general. Military leaders who saw the Philippines as one
campaign objected to this relationship because it hampered unity of command and often blurred
the lines of authority.
The U.S. used a balance of direct and indirect approaches to defeat the insurgents. They
earned the trust and confidence of the Filipinos by executing measures upfront to improve the
standard of living for the common Filipino. As the insurgency grew, the U.S. became heavy
handed, adopting stricter methods for dealing with the civilians and insurgents. The concept of
separating the insurgents from the population by resettlement and denying insurgents sanctuary
by infrastructure destruction were particularly effective. At the tactical level, methods developed
by commanders to interact with locals and civilian police enabled them to develop actionable
intelligence. The insurgency failed because combined civil-military counterinsurgency actions
prevented Aquinaldo and his successors from rallying the Filipino people against the U.S.
The current U.S. security apparatus must adapt to meet the challenges of the 21
Indoing so, leaders and planners must consider historical experiences as well as the future
capabilities of our enemies. When they examine history, they should not simply look for
prescriptive solutions, but instead should study the principles of insurgency and
counterinsurgency. When they study the enemy, they must realize that the 21 St century
insurgent is a hybrid of his ancestors. Finally, as they look for solutions, they must look at all
elements of national power. Existing capability gaps are not simply a result of materiel shortfalls
inmajor weapon systems or military formations, but are the result of shortfalls in strategy,
organizational structures, training, education, and doctrine. Given these shortfalls, the following
recommendations are presented:
The Defense Strategy, as it addresses the global insurgency, requires modification. First,
the strategy must change to acknowledge the new security environment. The current NSS and
NMS all but ignore the problem of insurgency, the strategy is vague and the language is soft.
Second, in developing a strategy to combat global insurgency, the U.S. should adopt a strategy
of management versus victory. The U.S. does not have the resources or the political will to
achieve total victory. For this reason, future strategies should include the participation of U.S.
allies and partners whose capabilities can complement U.S. capabilities.
Current interagency relationships are not satisfactory. In an effort to enhance unity of
effort, policy coordination and planning, the President should contract an independent agency to
review how to better align the civilian agencies within the Unified Command structure. Under
the current construct, one agency may be required to coordinate with more than one regional
Combatant Command. Additionally, Regional Combatant Command staffs require a
permanently assigned Interagency staff to facilitate coordination and planning. Current
arrangements across the Combatant Commands are ad hoc at best. Joint Forces Command
JIACG prototypes, currently under review, would serve this purpose.
2 1st
century security environment demands leaders at all levels that are intellectually
sound, culturally savvy and skilled in a language other than English. The DoD should develop
and resource a comprehensive strategy to train leaders in language and regional expertise
outside of the Foreign Area Officer (FAO) program. This training should based on regional
hotspots, occur through every step of the military professional education model and continue at
the unit level. The intent is not to provide FAO level expertise for all leaders, (this is
impractical), but to provide all leaders with a base line knowledge.
Intelligence from the strategic to tactical level is key to successful counterinsurgency
campaign. Even with advanced technology, the value of Human Intelligence Collection is as
important today as it was during the U.S. counterinsurgency in the Philippines in 1902. The
DoD should develop a strategy to grow and maintain Human Intelligence capabilities by
focusing its efforts on projected regional hotspots.
Joint and service counterinsurgency doctrine requires updating. At a minimum, doctrine
should be developed to provide the Joint commander with a framework, a set of guiding
principles and imperatives. It currently does not. This problem is further complicated because
existing counterinsurgency doctrine is spread across multiple Joint Publications. Joint
counterinsurgency doctrine should be consolidated into a single manual. Finally, the military
should review the Joint development doctrinal process for efficiency. The current process is
mired in bureaucracy, resulting in timely delays in doctrine and TTP. The review should focus
on procedures in order to provide concept to doctrine and the sharing of TTP to the field in a
timely manner.
The U.S. must transform its security structure to address the asymmetric capabilities of
2 1st
century global insurgent. Ongoing transformational efforts across government, military,
and non governmental organizations indicate that our nation’s senior leaders have recognized
the changing security environment and are adapting to meet the challenges of the future. The
question remains, will these changes be enough? Pending the release of strategic guidance
and recommendations outlined in documents such as the BG-N report, and the 2005 QDR, both
due out in the fall 2005, the jury is still out.
1Donald Rumsfeld, “Military Is Evolving,” USA Today, 21 December 2004, available from
; Internet;
accessed 21 December 2004.
Tom Donnelly, “QDR Time,” The Weekly Standard,6 January 2005; available from
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‘ Steven Metz and Raymond Millen, “Insurgency and Counterinsurgency inthe 21st
Century: Reconceptualizing Threat And Response.” available from
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Jan Horvath, Army Doctrine Writer, telephone interview by author, 28 January 2005
Keane Michael, “Our Tortured Language of War,” Los Angeles Times, 15 January 2005
[database on-line]; available from ProQuest; accessed 25 February 2005.
8 Joint
Chiefs of Staff, Departmentof Defense Dictionaryof Military and Associated Terms,
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10Joint Chiefs of Staff, Departmentof Defense Dictionaryof Militaryand Associated Terms,
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< http://www.dtic.mil/doctrine/jel/new-pubs/jpl_02.pdf>; Internet; accessed 24 February 2005.
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Myers, 9.
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34 Ibid.
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36 Kelleher, 105-106.
37 Allan G. Whittaker, Fredrick Smith, and Elizabeth Mckune, The NationalSecurity Policy
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3’ Campbell, 79.
Hans Binnendijk and Stuart Johnson, “Transforming for Stabilization Operations,”
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41 Bruce Hoffman and Jennifer M. Taw, “Defense Policy and Low Intensity Conflict, The
Development of Britain’s “Small Wars” Doctrine During the 1950s,” (Santa Monica, CA: Rand
1991), v.
John A. Nagal, CounterinsurgencyLessons from Malaya and Vietnam: Learning to Eat
Soup with a Knife (Westport: Praeger, 2002), 60.
‘ Phillip Derry, Malaya, 1948: Britain’s “Asian Cold War” Working Paper#3, April 2002
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Ibid., 67.
Hoffman, 17.
Nagal, 60-63.
Hoffman, 16-17.
4′ Nagal, 63.
50 Ibid.
51 Nagal, 67.
52 Bruce Hoffman, “Insurgency and Counterinsurgency in Iraq” June 2004, Rand
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” Joel E. Hamby, “Civil-military Operations: Joint Doctrine and the Malayan Emergency,”
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Nagal, 87.
55 Ibid., 88.
Nagal. 79.
58 Ibid., 91.
59 Ibid., 93-94.
Ibid., 102.
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Ibid., 8.
Ibid., 9.
Ibid., 12.
Ibid., 21.
Linn, The Philippine War, 1899-1902. 199.
Linn, The U.S. Army and Counterinsurgencyin the PhilippineWar 1899-1902, 12.
74 Ibid., 21.
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Linn, The U.S. Army and Counterinsurgencyin the PhilippineWar 1899-1902, 20.
77 Ibid., 21.
Ibid., 23 -24.
Linn, The Philippine War, 1899-1902, 185-189.
Birtle, 117-119.
Linn, The U.S. Army and Counterinsurgencyin the PhilippineWar 1899-1902, 75-77.
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Birtle, 132-135.
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  • Click on the “Place Order” tab at the top menu or “Order Now” icon at the bottom and a new page will appear with an order form to be filled.
  • Fill in your paper’s requirements in the "PAPER DETAILS" section.
  • Fill in your paper’s academic level, deadline, and the required number of pages from the drop-down menus.
  • Click “CREATE ACCOUNT & SIGN IN” to enter your registration details and get an account with us for record-keeping and then, click on “PROCEED TO CHECKOUT” at the bottom of the page.
  • From there, the payment sections will show, follow the guided payment process and your order will be available for our writing team to work on it.