Fraud or fuzziness?

In another coup, the Small Wars Journal has posted an article by Col Eric Walters, USMC.  Col Walters chaired the sessions on 4GW at last years’ Boyd Conference and was involved with the Marine Corps’ adoption of maneuver warfare doctrine in the late 1980s.  As with TX Hammes’ comments on Afghanistan (see posting below), any article by Col Walters will repay close reading.

In this piece, he “dissects” (his word) William Owens’ critique of maneuver warfare that recently appeared in the Royal United Services Institute Journal.  It’s not a refutation because Walters gives Owens full credit for several pertinent observations.  But he points out that the concept of “maneuver warfare” has progressed well beyond the notions embodied in MCDP 1 (1997) that were themselves reactions to the experiences of Vietnam. And then he raises the question of whether, because modern maneuver warfare doctrine arose from attempts to defeat an insurgency, are those concepts guiding counterinsurgency theory today?

I think you’ll find it an interesting exploration of state-of-the-art concepts in conflict by someone who is helping shape them.

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