The British Way in Counter-Insurgency, 1945–1967
David French, New York: Oxford University Press, 2012. x + 283 pp.
Time in the Shadows: Confinement in Counterinsurgency
Laleh Khalili, Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 2013. xiii + 347 pp.
Counterinsurgency—in theory and practice—has made a stunning comeback after its high point from the wars of liberation in the 1950s to the dying embers of the Iberian empires in the 1970s. While their wounds were still fresh, those episodes, whose most infamous cases include the wars of national liberation in Indonesia (1945–50), Malaya (1948–60), Kenya (1952–60), and Algeria (1954–62), were the subject of research that traced the contours of decolonization’s “dirty wars.” Much of the older research dealt with regions as a whole, or with politico-diplomatic bargaining between the colonial powers involved and their opponents, the national liberation movements.1 More recently, a new generation of scholars has added to the ever-growing body of counterinsurgency literature, which has brought the violent nature of this particular mode of warfare to the fore.2