Counterinsurgency and the Future of Afghanistan


Two experts on counterinsurgency present their sharply diverging views during a debate sponsored by the College’s Rosenfield Program in Public Affairs, International Relations, and Human Rights.

Col. Gian Gentile is professor of history at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, N.Y., and a prominent critic of the U.S. military’s use of counterinsurgency.

John Nagl, nonresident fellow at the Center for a New American Security and professor of history at the U.S. Naval Academy, literally wrote the book on U.S. counterinsurgency.

Nagl’s Learning to Eat Soup with a Knife: Counterinsurgency Lessons from Malaya and Vietnam influenced counterinsurgency strategy in Iraq and Afghanistan, a strategy The New York Times called “the troop-heavy, time-intensive, expensive doctrine of trying to win over the locals by building roads, schools, and government.”

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