Counterinsurgency in Afghanistan
Books on Afghanistan
Counterinsurgency operations are oriented toward sufficiently securing the environment to allow national institutions to be effective in maintaining law and order. This page provides a listing of news reports, publications, websites, books, and documents about counterinsurgency in Afghanistan.
NATO Counterinsurgency Library.
Counterinsurgency Info by COMISAF Advisory and
Assistance Team (CAAT)
COIN Common Sense. Monthly newsletter by CAAT.
COIN Training Center - Afghanistan on Facebook
Counterinsurgency - SecurityInfoNet
Counterinsurgency and Air Power. Special Forces
Military Publications on COIN
FM 3-24, Insurgencies and Countering
Insurgencies. Headquarters, Department of the Army, May 2014.
NATO, Allied Joint Publication for Counterinsurgency (COIN), AJP-3.4.4, February 2011.
Joint Publication 3-24, Counterinsurgency,
22 November 2013.
AJP 3.2, Allied Joint Doctrine for Land Operations. This document provides the underpinning for the COIN campaign theme and its relationship to the conduct of operations across the full range of military activities.
AJP 3.4, Non-Article 5 Crisis Response Operations. NA5CRO describes considerations for conducting various types of complex operations, including countering insurgency.
April 16, 2016. "No COIN Left in Afghanistan - Or
The Elephant in the Room That No One is Talking About", Small Wars
Journal. A very informative article by Franz J. Marty on the failure
of ISAF (and later Resolute Support) to help the ANDSF understand how to
defeat an insurgency.
March 29, 2016. "Economic Development in Counterinsurgency: Building a Stable Second Pillar", by COL Patrick H. Donely, Joint Force Quarterly 81 (2nd Quarter, April 2016).
November 2015. "'The People are Revolting': An
Anatomy of Authoritarian Counterinsurgency", The Journal of Strategic
Studies, 2015, by David H. Ucko (National Defense University).
February 20, 2015. Learning How Not to Scare
People: The Paradox of Counterinsurgency, By Lillian
Figg-Franzoi. Posted on E-International Relations.
November 25, 2014. "Adapting Army Aviation for
Irregular Warfare", Small Wars Journal, by Robert T. Ault.
Aviator discusses the pre-deployment training and deployment of an
aviation assault battalion in Wardak and Logar provinces in support of the
October 2014. Rethinking Victory in
Counterinsurgency, United States Army War College Press, Carlisle
Barracks, PA. Paper by Colonel Michael C. Griffin argues that
"success" should replace "victory" when talking about a desirable endstate
July 22, 2014. The Incompatibility of COIN
Warfare and Nation-Building in Iraq and Afghanistan, by Ibrahim
Gabr, E-International Relations.
March 21, 2014. "Understanding the Sea: The
Practical Application of Census Operations as a Primary Tool for the
Platoon-Level Counterinsurgent", Small Wars Journal, by Patrick
Munsing, Evan. "Reading Lawrence in Afghanistan:
The Seven Pillars of Counter-COIN Wisdom", Small Wars Journal,
March 10, 2014. The author suggests that Lawrence would have advised a
different COIN approach in Afghanistan.
Miles, Renanah. "The (Many) Hurdles to U.S.
Stabilization Operations". Posted on the Lawfare Blog, February
2, 2014. An end result of a successful counterinsurgency campaign is the
establishment of security and the stabilization of a region or country.
Civilian organizations play a major role in assisting militaries in this
mission; however the U.S. State Department and other governmental agencies
put forth a weak effort in the Afghan and Iraq Wars.
Walsh, Dr. James Igoe. The Effectiveness of
Drone Strikes in Counterinsurgency and Counterterrorism Campaigns,
United States Army War College Strategic Studies Institute, September
Eikenberry, Karl W., "The Limits of
Counterinsurgency Doctrine in Afghanistan: The Other Side of COIN",
Foreign Affairs, September - October 2013.
Petraeus, David. H., "Reflections on the
Counter-Insurgency Era", RUSI Journal, August 2013, Vol. 158,
No.4, Royal United Services Institute (RUSI).
Long, Austin. For Afghan and Other Local
Defense Forces, History Holds Warnings, RAND Corporation, Summer
Knoke, David. "It Takes a Network: The Rise and
Fall of Social Network Analysis in U.S. Army Counterinsurgency Doctrine",
Connections, Volume 33, Issue 1, July 2013, International Network
for Social Network Analysis.
Ucko, David H., "The Five Fallacies of
Clear-Hold-Build", RUSI Journal, June 2013, Vol. 158, No. 3.
Royal United Services Institute.
Metz, Steven. "Strategic Horizons: U.S.
Counterinsurgency Still Fighting the Last War", World Politics Review,
May 8, 2013.
Harrison, Stuart. "The Other Side of the COIN",
RUSI Defense Systems, January 29, 2013. Royal United
McBride, Keally and Annick T.R. Wibben. "The
Gendering of Counterinsurgency in Afghanistan:, Humanity, Summer
Muggleton, Paul and Bruce Oswald.
Counterinsurgency and Certain Legal Aspects: A Snapshot of Afganistan,
Social Science Research Network, July 24, 2012.
Murray, Michael. "Counterinsurgency and Community
Policing in Afghanistan", Small Wars Journal, January 1, 2012.
Nagl, John., "How the US learned
counterinsurgency", RUSI Analysis, September 2011. Royal United
Springer, Nathan. "Stabilizing the Debate between
Population-Centric and Enemy-Centric Counterinsurgency", Small Wars
Journal, August 13, 2011.
Coombs, Howard G. Afghanistan 2010-2011:
Counterinsurgency through Whole of Government, Canadian
Military Journal, Volume 13, Number 3, August 2011.
Kenney, Edward. Historical Counterinsurgency
and Afghanistan, Afghanistan Study Group, July 7, 2011.
Lister, Charles R., Cultural awareness and
counterinsurgency in Afghanistan, e-International Relations, March
Moyar, Dr. Mark. "Development in Afghanistan's
Counterinsurgency", Small Wars Journal, March 1, 2011.
Oliker, Olga. Building Afghanistan's Security
Forces in Wartime: The Soviet Experience, RAND Corporation, 2011.
Paganini, John LTC, Counterinsurgency Lessons
Learned, US Army Counterinsurgency Center, Fort Leavenworth, KS, 16
Paul, Christopher. Counterinsurgency
Scorecard: Afghanistan in Early 2011 Relative to the Insurgencies of the
Past 30 Years, RAND Corporation, 2011.
Meyerle, Jerry, Megan Katt, and Jim Gavrilis.
Counterinsurgency on the Ground in Afghanistan: How different units
adapted to local conditions, CNA Analysis & Solutions, November 2010.
COMISAF, COMISAF's Counterinsurgency Guidance,
ISAF, 1 August 2010. Posted on the Washington Post website.
Jones, Seth G. Transitioning to Afghan-Led
Counterinsurgency, RAND, May 10, 2010. Testimony before the
Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
Springer, Nathan. "Many Paths up the Mountain:
Population-Centric COIN in Afghanistan", Small Wars Journal, May
Slaughter, Sean R., Expanding the Qawm: Culturally Savvy Counterinsurgency and Nation-Building in Afghanistan, SAMS CGSC, Fort Leavenworth, KS, May 21, 2010. http://cgsc.contentdm.oclc.org/cdm/singleitem/collection/p4013coll3/id/2583/rec/48
ANA CAAT, ANA Counterinsurgency Capabilities
Report, Collection and Analysis Team (CAAT), Afghan National Army
Lessons Learned Center, May 8, 2010. Posted on Small Wars Journal
Litchfield, John D., Unconventional Counterinsurgency: Leveraging Traditional Social Networks and Irregular Forces in Remote and Ungoverned Areas, SAMS CGSC, Fort Leavenworth, KS, May 21, 2010. http://cgsc.contentdm.oclc.org/cdm/singleitem/collection/p4013coll3/id/2544/rec/10
Henriksen, Thomas H., Afghanistan,
Counterinsurgency, and the Indirect Approach, JSOU Report 10-3, Joint
Special Operations University, Hulbert Field, Florida, April 2010.
Springer, Nathan. "Implementing a
Population-Centric COIN Strategy", Small Wars Journal, March 1,
Kalinovsky, Artemy. The Blind Leading the
Blind: Soviet Advisors, Counter-Insurgency and Nation-Building in
Afghanistan, Working Paper #60, Woodrow Wilson International Center
for Scholars, January 2010.
Paul, Christopher, Colin P. Clarke, and Beth
Grill. Victory Has a Thousand Fathers: Sources of Success in
Counterinsurgency, RAND Corporation, 2010.
Thompson, CPT Carl. "Winning in Afghanistan",
New York Times, April 9, 2009.
U.S. Government, Counterinsurgency Guide,
Interagency Counterinsurgency Initiative, January 2009. Posted on USAF Air
Jones, Seth G. Counterinsurgency in
Afghanistan, RAND Corporation, 2008.
Kilcullen, Dr. David J., Three Pillars of
Counterinsurgency, remarks delivered at the U.S. Government
Counterinsurgency Conference, Washington, D.C., 28 September 2006. (3
pillars are: Security, Political, and Economic).
Dyke, John R. Unconventional
Counter-insurgency in Afghanistan, Naval Post Graduate School,
Monterey, CA: June 2006.
McMichael, Scott R., "The Soviet Army,
Counterinsurgency, and the Afghan War", Parameters, December
1989, pages 21-35.
Irregular Warfare (IW) Bibliography,
USASOC, 2 June 2011, FID content is found on pages 5-28; COIN content is
found on pages 89-124.
CAC Commander's Counterinsurgency Reading List
USAF Air University Reading List on
Counterinsurgency (COIN), DTIC Online, ADM002209,
"What to Read on Fighting Insurgencies" by
Foreign Affairs, July 10, 2009.
The Counterinsurgency Reading List, Abu
Muqawama Blog, CNAS, October 2007.
May 1, 2013. "Debate on Counterinsurgency: Gentile vs Nagl", Small Wars Journal. Video of debate at Grinnel College. Access here.
Graphic - Afghanistan Stability / COIN Dynamics,
PA Consulting Group, Dec 2009.
February 21, 2014. "Military needs to remember lessons about fighting insurgencies". Mainline Media News. John Nagl tells West Point cadets that he worries lessons of counterinsurgency in Afghanistan will be lost.
February 20, 2014. "Why Counterinsurgency Matters for MONUSCO". Small Wars Journal. The author thinks lessons learned in Afghan can be applied in future.
January 28, 2014. "Front Row Seat: Watching COIN Fail in Afghanistan", War on the Rocks. A Marine Corps officer and former advisor offers comments.
December 23, 2013. "General Says Counterinsurgency Like Immune System". Epoch Times. Stanley McChrystal likens an insurgency to a disease.
November 7, 2013. "Clear-Hold-Build-Fail? Rethinking Local-Level Counterinsurgency". War on the Rocks. The author questions the validity of "Clear, Hold, Build" and equates it to "mowing the grass".
September 13, 2013. "The Army's Learning-and-Adapting Dogma". The National Interest. Read story here.
March 13, 2013. "The COIN of the Realm . . . Is a Wooden Nickel". Time.com. Read story here.
November 19, 2012. "Petraeus's COIN Gets Flipped". The American Conservative. Read story here.
November 13, 2012. "General David Petraeus's fatal flaw: not the affair, but his Afghanistan surge". The Guardian. Read story here.
October 12, 2012. "US Army Colonel Reveals Failure of COIN and Barbarism of Afghans". Front Page Magazine. Read story here. COL Harry Tunnel's letter.
August 31, 2012. "COIN's Failure in Afghanistan". The National Interest. Read story here.
June 15, 2012. "Waging COIN in Afghanistan: An Interview with Colonel Robert M. Cassidy". Small Wars Journal. Read story here.
May 31, 2012. "Ends and Means in Counterinsurgency". The National Interest. Read story here.
January February 2012. "Both Sides of the COIN: Defining War after Afghanistan", Foreign Affairs. Read story here.
June 23, 2011. "Washington Losing Patience with Counterinsurgency in Afghanstan", National Journal. Read story here.
August 2, 2010. "Petraeus issues Afghanistan COIN guidance". Stars and Stripes. Read story here.
May 12, 2010. "Counterinsurgency theory default risk". The Economist. Read the story here.
May 12, 2010. "From Kandahar, a View of Counterproductive Counterinsurgency". The Washington Independent. Read the story here.
October 9, 2011. "Counterinsurgency in Afghanstan: Is it Working?" ABC News. Read the story here.
June 19, 2010. "Lawrence of Arabia, guiding US Army in Iraq and Afghanistan". Lawrence of Arabia's life and writings still give counterinsurgency experts in the US guidance on how to conduct operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. The Christian Science Monitor. Read the story here.
March 27, 2009. "A New Counterinsurgency in Afghanistan". By Max Boot in Commentary Magazine. Read the story here.