Friday, 19 July 2019

Dien Bien Phu Myths | 5th Edition

Viet Minh soldiers on top of General De Castries bunker in Dien Bien Phu
"Historian Bernard Fall, still a leading authority on the French Indochina War even 70 years later, wrote about this pervading myth in his work, Hell in a Very Small Place: The Siege of Dien Bien Phu, effectively riposting any claims to the contrary through French Legionary archives and personal interviews." The following article, originally published in the UNRV Ancient Roman Empire Forums by User Sassinid Azatan, debunks the ten most common myths about the last major battle in French Indochina.  

Thursday, 11 July 2019

Rethinking Counterinsurgency | A Case Study of Boko Haram in Nigeria

A Nigerian soldier carries his teammate during a casualty evacuation training exercise at Bobo-Dioulasso, Burkina Faso February 21 during #Flintlock19
A thesis submitted by Samson Eyituoyo Liolio, Nigeria. Abstract: "The issue of Boko Haram in Nigeria has become a threat to both internal and international security with ever-growing violence and attacks on security forces, civilians, churches, media houses as well as international bodies such as the United Nations. With the increased numbers of cadres, improved and sophisticated weaponry, suicide bombing and well organised guerrilla tactics, Boko Haram’s challenge to the Nigerian state now also stretches across the entire 36 states of Nigeria, thus affecting its economic and social-political growth. With an aim of finding a solution that could lead to success in fending off the Boko Haram insurgency, this thesis explores the economic and political-cum-military forces at play between the Nigerian state and Boko Haram. It tries to investigate the apparatus of counterinsurgency earlier employed by the Nigerian state, thus also seeking to explain the possible counterproductive result or failure of counterinsurgency."

Wednesday, 10 July 2019

Operation Husky - The Campaign in Sicily

: American troops place steel matting over the sandy beach near Scoglitti to provide traction for heavy vehicles.
This is a case study, by Jon M. Swanson, LTC, USAF. Abstract: "The Allied decision to invade Sicily following the successful operation in North Africa was crucial to the conduct of World War II. The commitment of such a large force to
continued operations in the Mediterranean theater meant that the cross-channel invasion from Great Britain into northwest Europe would have to be delayed. If Sicily was chosen as the next step, it would come at the expense of other options favored by many political and military leaders.The American military commanders strongly favored a cross-channel invasion at the earliest possible opportunity. This meant that this invasion force would be the first priority for troops, shipping and equipment. On the other hand, the British favored an indirect approach that would see a major effort continue in the Mediterranean."

Tuesday, 9 July 2019

Counterinsurgency - The Hogard Doctrine

Général Jacques Hogard, Stratège de la contre-insurrection
An interesting publication (in French) about a perhaps underrated (or forgotten?!) French COIN expert - "The concept of subversive warfare has once again come to resemble the one that had been paradoxically advocated by many leaders of the 18th century: to defeat the enemy without fighting,” according to Jacques Hogard. This French military officer belongs to the generation of lieutenants and captains who had fought against the already well-established phenomenon that reached its climax during the Cold War and has since been, in his words, “adopted by all modern barbarians.” To his credit, he reviewed the subject coldly and in its entirety, in order to better defeat it."