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Characterizing and Exploring the Implications of Maritime Irregular Warfare

Characterizing and Exploring the Implications of Maritime Irregular Warfare

Copyright Date: 2012
Published by: RAND Corporation
Pages: 138
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  • Book Info
    Characterizing and Exploring the Implications of Maritime Irregular Warfare
    Book Description:

    Although irregular warfare includes a range of activities in which naval forces have played an integral role, there has been little examination of the characteristics or potential of such operations in maritime environments. An assessment of the maritime component of a series of historical and ongoing operations reveals that current notions of irregular warfare would benefit from increased recognition of potential maritime contributions.

    eISBN: 978-0-8330-5923-9
    Subjects: History, Political Science

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-ii)
  2. Preface
    (pp. iii-iv)
  3. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-viii)
  4. Figures and Table
    (pp. ix-x)
  5. Summary
    (pp. xi-xx)
  6. Acknowledgments
    (pp. xxi-xxii)
  7. Abbreviations
    (pp. xxiii-xxvi)
  8. CHAPTER ONE Introduction
    (pp. 1-4)

    Given U.S. involvement and support for multiple counterinsurgency (COIN) and counterterrorism (CT) campaigns in various theaters, particularly over the past decade, the concept ofirregular warfarehas become increasingly prevalent among defense strategists and analysts, with numerous policy publications and field manuals devoted to defining, explaining, and exploring the consequences of the term and related activities (HQDA, 1961, 2006, 2008; U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, 2008; Newton et al., 2009). Indeed, CT expert William Rosenau (2006, p. 53) notes that “insurgency and counterinsurgency . . . have enjoyed a level of military, academic, and journalistic notice unseen since the 1960s.”...

  9. CHAPTER TWO What Is Maritime Irregular Warfare?
    (pp. 5-18)

    Irregular warfareis a term used by the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) to describe certain military operations. The 2006 Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR) introduced the term in the context of one of four types of threats facing the United States (irregular threats; the other three were traditional, disruptive, and catastrophic) and suggested that more U.S. DoD plans and funding should be devoted to IW programs (DoD, 2006).¹ Yet, there is still debate in DoD doctrine and among military and policymaking circles regarding the exact definition of IW. Perhaps in recognition of this lack of clarity, the termirregular warfare...

  10. CHAPTER THREE The Case of Operation Enduring Freedom—Philippines
    (pp. 19-34)

    Concern in U.S. Pacific Command about terrorism and crime in the southern Philippines spiked a few months before September 11, 2001. On May 27 of that year, the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) kidnapped 17 Filipinos and three Americans from their diving resort cabins on Palawan Island. In this instance, ASG members covertly entered the resort by boat, captured their victims from seaside cabins, and then returned by boat to their camp on Basilan Island in the Sulu Archipelago—a classic amphibious raid (M. Bowden, 2007).¹

    After the September 11 attacks, the U.S. Pacific Command received orders to develop plans for...

  11. CHAPTER FOUR A Comparative Historical Analysis of Maritime Irregular Warfare
    (pp. 35-68)

    As Chapter Three illustrated, the OEF-P case of MIW includes various tactical, operational, and strategic lessons. This chapter examines and compares a variety of other MIW cases, seeking to derive additional lessons regarding MIW. The remainder of this chapter explores MIW cases across the spectrum of strategic scenarios presented in Chapter Two, looking first at MIW in COIN, then assessing MIW in UW, and finally turning to MIW in law-enforcement scenarios.

    The United States and its allies have a fairly extensive historical track record of using maritime forces in COIN missions, a trend that continues today. Maritime forces were used...

  12. CHAPTER FIVE Adversary Capabilities in Maritime Irregular Warfare
    (pp. 69-86)

    The future is uncertain regarding the range of potential MIW threats that may face the United States. Yet, it is informative to examine the breadth of capabilities possessed by U.S. adversaries or analogous actors in the recent past and at present. This chapter aims to identify and assess the spectrum of possible future MIW threats that the United States may confront. To this end, we explored the cases of the Sea Tigers (the maritime wing of the LTTE), active in Sri Lanka from 1984 through 2009; the LeT attack in Mumbai in 2008; and piracy off the HoA over the...

  13. CHAPTER SIX Conclusions and Recommendations
    (pp. 87-96)

    Given the current prominence of irregular warfare and related activities in U.S. military strategy, it is reasonable to explore the various advantages of IW activities on land, in the air, and in maritime environments. Yet, there is a dearth of analysis on the specific requirements of and opportunities provided by maritime IW at present, with very little focus in the doctrinal and other literature on IW in maritime environs. The aim of our study was to describe the strategic potential of MIW and to assess its operational and tactical characteristics based on a sample of recent MIW operations, with an...

  14. References
    (pp. 97-112)