Part 2: The War is Over, The Good Guys Lost
If insurgency is defined as an organised political struggle by a hostile minority, attempting to seize power through revolutionary means, then counterinsurgency is the military doctrine historically used against non-state actors, which sets out to infiltrate and eradicate those movements.
Unlike conventional soldiers, insurgents are considered dangerous, not because of their physical presence on the battlefield, but because of their ideology.
As David Galula, a French commander who was an expert in counterinsurgency warfare during the Algerian War, emphasised:
“In any situation, whatever the cause, there will be an active minority for the cause, a neutral majority, and an active minority against the cause. The technique of power consists in relying on the favourable minority in order to rally the neutral majority and to neutralise or eliminate the hostile minority.”
Over time, however, the intelligence state lost touch with reality, as the focus of its counterinsurgency programs shifted from foreign to domestic populations, from national security risks to ordinary citizens, particularly in the wake of 9/11 when the NSA and its British counterpart, GCHQ, began mapping out the Internet.
Thanks to Edward Snowden’s revelations in 2013, we now know that the NSA were collecting 200 billion pieces of data every month, including the cell phone records, emails, Web searches and live chats of more than 200 million ordinary Americans. This was extracted from the world’s largest Internet companies via a lesser-known data mining program called Prism.