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Description - Globalisation and Insurgency by John Mackinlay

After the leading edge of the UN's post Cold War interventions had failed or partially failed, due to confrontation by local forces, military contributors began to understand that their role required a less supine, more adversarial, approach. Their purpose was no longer simply to behave in the manner of a harmless referee between supposedly consenting factions, but to act, partially if necessary, to restore the monopoly of violence. In military logic, the critical path of doctrine development begins with an attempt to conceptualize the threat or risk, and understanding the "enemy" is the first essential for training and operational planning. But in the newly emerging doctrines for international intervention this information was missing. Nevertheless, in every region international military forces and humanitarian agencies were being challenged by local factions, which in some cases overturned the entire peace process. The paradox was that during the Cold War, when insurgent forces posed less threat to international security, western military forces had a well- developed conceptual understanding of them. But, in the post Cold War period, when the incidence of insurgency was greater and the related civilian casualties were so much higher due to displacement, genocide and conflict-related deprivation, there was no definition or concept of this phenomenon. Not all states are weakened by globalisation; insurgents face both rich and poor governments. A state that is weakened by global change provides an environment for a poorly constituted insurgent force to survive. However insurgents who struggle against rich and militarily powerful governments have to be better organised and operate in a more effective manner. The possibility of making huge sums of money from resource trading in weak states exposes a movement to the temptations of maintaining violence as a way of life as opposed to being a means towards achieving a long-term revolutionary goal. These developments have created new categories of insurgency. Although these models are no more than a first step towards conceptualising insurgent forces that oppose international efforts and host governments, even in this rudimentary form they raise several issues for planners and leaders of future interventions. The book concludes that Cold War-era counter-insurgency doctrines addressed insurgent forces that were seeking to overthrow the government or regime of a particular state. As a result counter-insurgency thinking is essentially national in character. There have been no wider efforts to create an international approach as in the case of peacekeeping techniques. The globalisation of insurgency leads inexorably to the globalisation of counter-insurgency.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780198527077
ISBN-10: 0198527071
Format: Paperback
(234mm x 156mm x mm)
Pages: 120
Imprint: Routledge
Publisher: Taylor & Francis Ltd
Publish Date: 21-Nov-2002
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

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Author Biography - John Mackinlay

John Mackinlay is a Senior Research Fellow at the Centre for Defence Studies, King's College London.

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