Counterinsurgency warfare: theory and practice / David Galula; Foreword by John A. David Galula drank as deeply of this bitter draught as did his contempo -. Summary of Counterinsurgency Warfare: Theory and Practice By David Galula Summary written by Brett Reeder, Conflict Research Consortium Citation: Galula, . operations citing David Galula’s theory. In his book, Counterinsurgency Warfare: Theory and. Practice, Galula sets a clear mark for planning future COIN.

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While the two mostly agreed on definitions and implications, they began to diverge on the question of strategy and tactics. Counterinsurgency in the Hot Revolutionary War. Journal of Strategic Studies, Vol 33, Iss 5, p. It was short and I was going to whip thru it.

Though many of its empirical examples are dated, its insights remain hauntingly relevant. Much of what I have to say are merely reflections of an amateur observer. Concentrate enough armed forces to destroy or to expel the main body of armed insurgents.

I read this in earl when I was trying to learn more about counterinsurgency war and the “surge” that the US forces were promoting in Iraq.

David Galula was a French military officer and scholar who was influential in developing the theory and practice of counterinsurgency warfare.

Thanks for telling us about the problem. Galula examines larger strategic issues, and describes both military and political actions that are necessary for a successful counterinsurgency campaign.

In fact, well written and directed propaganda is more useful that well directed bullets. Mar 31, John rated it really liked it Shelves: Each of the steps is to be undertaken in a specific area consistent with the fourth law and then repeated in other areas as necessary.

David Galula

Aug 27, Nick Lloyd rated it really liked it Shelves: The former nation opted to go along with a military-backed, anti-Communist pogrom that consumed hundreds of thousands in lives. Dec 17, Jordan Balsamo rated it liked it.


Indeed ,as Galula put it, “Essential though it is, the military action is secondary to the political one, its primary purpose being to afford the political power enough freedom to work safely with the population. This is a short theoretical essay on counterinsurgency war by an expert with ties to the French military.

An insurgency can only succeed by building on the population’s real grievances. Summary of Counterinsurgency Warfare: The population must sympathize with counter insurgent’s cause and voluntarily provide information that will defeat the insurgency. The fourth and final law of counterinsurgency regards the “intensity of effort and vastness of means. On the other hand, insurgents lack power, but they are much more free to violate both their promises and social norms. Contents Revolutionary War Nature and Characteristics.

This book is still in force despite having been written in the 60s, since the principles observed by the author have not changed much over the years.

A Historical and Critical Study Limited preview – One of Galula’s laws is, “In any situation, whatever the cause, there will be an active minority for the cause, a neutral majority, and an active minority against the cause”.

Development of the Static Unit.

Counterinsurgency Warfare: Theory and Practice

How may it be said that these two cannot exist together? The definitive counterinsurgency manual. Yet whatever their differences, both have effective advice for the counterinsurgent, and both of the books should be used in conjunction when planning and preparing for counterinsurgency operations.

Rather, action should be taken in select areas, and resources moved as needed. Galula resigned his commission in to study in the United Stateswhere he obtained a position of research associate at the Center for International Affairs of Harvard University.


Recently the same theories have been revived by the US Department of Defense, tempered by our experiences in Afghanistan and post-war Iraq, and incorporated into Field Manual”Counterinsurgency. The “Laws” According to Galula, there are four “laws” of counterinsurgency. Revolutionary War Is a Protracted War.

Counterinsurgency Warfare: Theory and Practice – David Galula – Google Books

Second, it is also based on some dated ideas about development, the nature of Communism, a poor understanding of Maoist strategy, and the relationship between politics and war. Aside from redefining a priori limitations to military engagements, Galula ingeniously prescribes new developmental principles, laws and theories for states to effectively combat an insurgency. This volume in the Praeger Security International PSI series Classics of the Counterinsurgency Era defines the laws of insurgency and outlines the strategy and tactics to combat such threats.

It’s a lucid, engaging and clear book that in spite of being short, explains in a precise and detailed way the whole process of conformation and establishment of an andd insurgency counteeinsurgency everything related to its natural reaction; the counterinsurgency.

Most importantly, if the counter insurgent wants to win the conflict, an alternative competing political platform must be provided or a current one reinforced for the population to choose. Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Another interesting topic discussed was the relative ease that insurgencies can develop and surprise any population dxvid they become fully active.