Cover: Insurgency as a Strategic Problem

Insurgency as a Strategic Problem

Published 1967

by Paul Kecskemeti


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Examination of the major recent historical examples of insurgency reveals that its main causes are to be sought not in economic deprivation but in political factors such as alien rule or foreign invasion. Nationalist and peasant-populist aspirations provided the principal motives for joining insurgent forces. The Communists succeeded in controlling insurgencies only when special historical circumstances prevailed; elsewhere the decisive control positions remained in non-Communist hands. Removing the political causes of insurgency ("crisis management") is beyond the capability of any single administrative agency, and in any case cannot be undertaken by political machinery operating from outside; but to the extent that insurgency is of nationalist or populist origins, this does not imply any fatal weakness of the U.S. security posture in relation to "undeterrable" forms of Communist aggression.

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