The Counter-counterinsurgency Manual: Or, Notes on Demilitarizing American Society

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Prickly Paradigm Press, 2009 - History - 190 pages
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At a moment when the U.S. military decided it needed cultural expertise as much as smart bombs to prevail in Iraq and Afghanistan, the Pentagon’s Counterinsurgency Field Manual offered a blueprint for mobilizing anthropologists for war. The Counter-Counterinsurgency Manual critiques that strategy and offers a blueprint for resistance. Written by the founders of the Network of Concerned Anthropologists, the Counter-Counterinsurgency Manual explores the ethical and intellectual conflicts of the Pentagon’s Human Terrain System; argues that there are flaws in the Counterinsurgency Field Manual (ranging from plagiarism to a misunderstanding of anthropology); probes the increasing militarization of academic knowledge since World War II; identifies the next frontiers for the Pentagon’s culture warriors; and suggests strategies for resisting the deformation and exploitation of anthropological knowledge by the military. This is compulsory reading for anyone concerned that the human sciences are losing their way in an age of empire.

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I was hoping for something that would provide alternative ideas to the current COIN strategy being employed in Afghanistan and Iraq. Instead the book was filled with wild claims, inaccuracies, and blatant lies about operations and how social science has been used in overseas contingency operations. I can honestly say this is a whole lot of worthless. 

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About the author (2009)

The Network of Concerned Anthropologists is a group of scholars seeking to promote an ethical anthropology. They believe that anthropologists should not engage in research and other activities that contribute to counterinsurgency operations in Iraq or in related theaters in the war on terror.

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