Leading Counterinsurgency Strategist to Speak at CSU

COLUMBUS, Ga. -- The lead author of the Army and Marine Corps’ recently revised counterinsurgency field manual will speak about the subject 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 14 in the Cunningham Center as part of Columbus State University’s Hallock Lecture Series. The program is free and open to the public. Conrad Crane
Military historian and retired Army colonel Conrad Crane’s lecture is drawn from the field manual project and titled “Exorcising Old Demons and Discovering New Ones: Using History to Make History in American Counterinsurgency.”

Crane, right, with a Ph.D. in history from Stanford University, was called upon by his West Point classmate, Lt. Gen. David Petraeus, in 2005 to oversee the first complete rewriting in 20 years of the Army and Marines’ counterinsurgency field manual.

The publication the following year drew attention to Crane, including from Newsweek, which referred to him as "a 'Man to Watch' for his contribution to the intellectual development of the Army and Marine Corps."  Counterinsurgency has traditionally referred to the strategy of capturing or destroying forces disruptive to a regime seeking to establish or maintain governance.

The revised manual has expanded the definition to encompass, among other concepts, assisting local communities and citizens affected by surrounding military action. The updated manual is “perhaps the most important driver of intellectual change for the Army and Marine Corps,” said Lt. Col. John A. Nagl in the publication's foreword. Nagle led a tank platoon in Operation Desert Storm and served as an operations officer from 2003-2004 in Khalidiyah, Iraq.

Crane presently directs the U.S. Army Military History Institute at Carlisle Barracks, Pa. He is retired from the Army with 26 years of military service that concluded with nine years as a history professor for the U.S. Military Academy in West Point.

CSU's Department of History and Geography is organizing Crane’s CSU lecture in a series funded by the Richard R. Hallock Foundation. For more information, call 706-507-8350.