Positive communications: the keystone of counterinsurgency strategy
Pham, Truc T.
Sieber, Michael J.
Warren, T. Camber
Hernandez, Alejandro;Tsolis, Kristen
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Over the last decade, the United States military has struggled to develop methodologies to assess success in its execution of counterinsurgency operations. By examining Zabul province, Afghanistan, this study offers a quantitative method to measure the effectiveness of positive communications that counterinsurgents conduct as part of their information strategy to mobilize public support for the incumbent government. We test the hypothesis that positive communications play a significant role in shaping popular attitudes and, when conducted by counterinsurgents, influence the population to support the government and deny safe haven for insurgents. Estimating a variety of regression models, we utilize high-resolution spatio-temporal data to isolate the casual effect of population engagements and radio broadcasts in relation to levels of insurgent violence over time and space. The evidence supports our prediction that positive communications conducted by counterinsurgents reduce insurgent violence.
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