Thesis Title

Counterinsurgency Lessons From Algeria and Columbia

Date of Graduation

Spring 2003


Master of Science in Defense and Strategic Studies


Defense and Strategic Studies

Committee Chair

C. Walton


Since World War II, insurgent warfare has been the most prevalent type of armed conflict. The use of politically motivated violence against legitimate governments represents a continuing threat to U.S. security interests. Due to the varied nature of insurgent threats, the United States does not have a coherent counterinsurgency doctrine. This thesis will analyze two case studies and identify general lessons that the United States can apply to its counterinsurgency doctrine. The case studies to be examined are the French Algerian insurgency from 1954-1962 and the ongoing insurgency in Colombia. Both case studies examine the origins of the insurgency as well as the strategy and tactics of the insurgent and counterinsurgent forces. Drawing lessons from these case studies, the thesis then makes policy recommendations for the effective employment of a U.S. counterinsurgency doctrine.

Subject Categories

Defense and Security Studies


© Christopher S. Seamster