The COIN Temptation

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I agree with Shawn Brimley that the risk of the Army’s new emphasis on COIN tactics is less that we’ll lose the capacity to fight conventional wars against major powers like Russia and China. (Our military capacity is light years ahead of theirs, and let’s face it, that’s still what nuclear deterrence is about.) The risk is that we’ll fight more COIN-type wars of choice. It’s tempting to think of our newly evolved COIN approach as a precision tool capable of laser-guided interventions. But while the military component is necessary to secure areas in which to apply the political solution, […]

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