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Defeating communist insurgency: Experiences from Malaya and Vietnam (Studies in international security ; no.10) Unknown Binding – 1 Jan 1966

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Product details

  • Unknown Binding: 171 pages
  • Publisher: Chatto & Windus (1 Jan. 1966)
  • ASIN: B0000CMZ9U
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,319,645 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Hardcover
Although written in 1966 after the author’s experiences as a senior civil servant in the Malayan Campaign and an advisor in Vietnam from 1961 to 1965, the content of this book is still highly relevant today. Even the initial chapters which focus on the setting of South-East Asia, Communist Subversion and Communist remain useful in describing the conditions and problems of an insurgency in its initial and later stages since, as the author points out, the actual ideology of communism was rarely an important part of the appeal of, or made by, the communist organizations involved.
The author then examines what he considers the basic principles of counter-insurgency: a clear political aim, with an emphasis on it being a ‘war for the people’ – the obvious influence on Gen Rupert Smith’s The Utility of Force, which uses the phrase ‘war amongst the people’ – with the people as the prize; the government must function within the law; the government must have an overall plan; the government must give priority to defeating the political subversion not the guerrillas; and the government must secure its base areas first.
The author examines the way the government should approach its own people, including a look at such things as denying positive associations with the name of the insurgents, the fundamental importance of security and development and how tentative
the introduction of democracy must be in a situation of insurgency – the point being that the question of “Who is going to win?” will trump all others.
The next chapters look at how the various government agencies should be structured to best effect.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 3 reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
One of the vital readings of our times. 30 Nov. 2010
By J. Bonin - Published on
Format: Hardcover
This text, along with the Iraq Study Group Report and No More Vietnams by Richard Nixon, is of great importance in understanding our past seven years of commitment in Iraq. Sir Robert Thompson's tactics and strategies for countering insurgencies can easily be seen as the cornerstone of modern counter insurgency thought. His breakdown of the different types of persons drawn to join an insurgency alone is worth the cost of purchase and will shed a light for anyone seeking facts over the musings of pundits.
Good Advice, Seldom Followed 30 Jun. 2013
By Christian Potholm - Published on
Format: Hardcover
The Malay counter-insurgency effort following World War II might have been a most useful model for Vietnam as well as numerous other comparable situations, but that was not to be. The author, who was an important player in both situations, outlines some of the might have beens had the lessons of Malaya been truly learned. This work is well worth studying in order to get a sense for the sine qua nons which were required in the Malay situation and which need to be duplicated for successful counter-insurgencies elsewhere. Some of Thompson's most important principles for successful counter-insurgency include: (1) the government must have a clear political aim to establish and maintain a free, independent and united country, (2) it must function according to law and not apply that law capriciously, (3) it must have an overall plan, including political, social, economic, administrative and policy elements, not simply security and military operations, (4) the government must give priority to defeating the range of political subversion, not just the guerrilla fighters of that subversion and (5) in the guerilla phase of counter-insurgency, it must secure (and hold) its base areas first. The secret, he believes, is for the government to take the initiative away from the guerillas and force them to go on the defensive. Thompson then focuses on a central military truth (not espoused by those who feature "search and destroy" with massive sweeps): "It is not often realized that in guerilla warfare guerilla forces are just a vulnerable to ambushes as re government forces."
This is a very important book.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Defeating Communist Insurgency 1 Feb. 2009
By Joseph H. White - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
If you want to understand the current War on Terrorism and you are part of a military campaign - then BUY THIS BOOK - and learn from the best...even the new COIN FM by the US Army cannot stand up against this book...

Intel Analyst need to read and incorporate this book - it will only lead to success!!!
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