4th Generation Warfare

The Israel-Lebanon Conflict has created tons of good discussion on geopolitics and warfare. This little nugget by William S. Lind caught my eye and indicates why states have so much trouble attacking terrorism and guerrilla warfare:

But his alternative, at least for a rollback force, includes privatizing the fighting function. The problem with this is that as the state privatizes security functions, for foreign wars or here at home, it strikes at its own reason for being and thus accelerates its crisis of legitimacy, which lies at the heart of 4GW. Once security is privatized, why have a state at all?

Conveniently, private armies have a long history of overthrowing states. There is good reason why the rising state of the 17th century abolished private armies and forcefully asserted a monopoly on violence.


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