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Current and probable future United States involvement in counterinsurgencies revives a long-standing debate about whether these missions call for adding specialized aircraft, training, or other resources to the general military airlift fleet. The authors examine the use of airlift in past and present counterinsurgency operations, including the Foreign Internal Defense program. They conclude that general U.S. airlift forces can accomplish most counterinsurgency missions effectively, with adjustments in employment doctrines and training. However, they also note that continued operations likely will require reinforcement of the general airlift fleet and, perhaps, acquisition of a small fleet element optimized for certain counterinsurgency missions.

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