Wow! I just got back from Marine Corps University’s event “Counterinsurgency Leadership in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Beyond.” While I don’t have time to fully relate the awesome experience as I have to finish The Ugly American, write on Roman philosophy, and prepare for a Naval Weapon Systems exam, I wanted to leave readers with one question. Is a good counterinsurgency leader also automatically a good conventional war leader? This is the claim asserted by Mark Moyar, author of Question of Command. It seems a little too sweeping to me.; then again, COIN leaders are expected to have all the same competencies with the addition of flexibility as well as political and social skills.
Is there a problem with defining “good” COIN officers as super soldiers or is this level of proficency (in nearly everything) just the reality of counterinsurgency operations ?
Also, there were several USNI blog readers in attendance. It was great to meet you all in person!