A Great Perhaps? Colombia: Conflict and Convergence

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No country has managed as rapid and positive a turnaround in governance and security conditions this century as Colombia. To date, however, there has been no comprehensive examination of the different elements employed by the government to combat the guerrillas. How the Colombians did so of this is the subject of A Great Perhaps? Colombia, Conflict and Convergence (Hurst, 2016) written by four international specialists with unrivalled policy and practical expertise in counterinsurgency campaigns in Colombia and elsewhere, who bring a unique comparative perspective.

Based on field-work in Colombia’s regions, A Great Perhaps? provides a history of the conflict, compares it to other historical and contemporary case-studies, examines the war from the perspectives of the government and the guerrillas, delves into the development of special Colombian capabilities (notably in intelligence and the use of airpower and special forces), and explains the economic dimension in terms both of historical exclusion and ongoing attempts at growth and inclusion.

At this lunchtime launch event, Dickie Davis and David Kilcullen will present the main findings of this authoritative study.

Speakers Biography

David Kilcullen is one of the world’s foremost thinkers on counterinsurgency and military strategy. He is the author of The Accidental Guerrilla, a Washington Post bestseller, Counterinsurgency and Out of the Mountains. He was formerly Senior Counterinsurgency Advisor to General David Petraeus in Iraq and to the NATO Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan. He is currently Chairman of Caerus Associates, a Washington-based strategy and design firm, and First Mile Geo, a geospatial analysis firm. He is also a Senior Fellow at the New America Foundation, studying insurgency and unconventional warfare. He has served in Colombia, Iraq, Afghanistan and Somalia.

Dickie Davis is the Managing Director of Nant Enterprises Ltd and an associate of the Johannesburg-based Brenthurst Foundation. He served for thirty-one years in the British Army, reaching the rank of Major General. During his military career he served extensively on operations in Afghanistan, commanding the first UK Provincial Reconstruction Team in Mazar-e-Sharif, leading the ISAF Reconstruction and Development effort and as Chief of Staff of Regional Command (South). He is a Vice President of the Institution of Royal Engineers, Chairman of both the Royal Engineers’ Museum and the Royal Engineers Officers’ Widows Society, and is Honorary Colonel of the Royal Monmouthshire Royal Engineers (Militia). He holds a Master’s degree in defence technology and is a Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute.

For further information, please contact Sajid Ali, SajidA@rusi.org.

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