Last week, Air Force Brig. Gen. Robert H. Holmes, Central Command’s deputy director of operations, told reporters that an interagency task force on irregular warfare is about to be announced. He called it “our way at the combatant command to be able to focus all of the instruments of power in order to prosecute the irregular warfight in our region.”
But what does “irregular warfare” mean?
Essentially, it is an approach to future conflict that the United States has been carrying out ad hoc in Iraq and Afghanistan. Two years ago, Deputy Defense Secretary Gordon England signed off on a Pentagon “working definition” that described it as “a form of warfare that has as its objective the credibility and/or legitimacy of the relevant political authority with the goal of undermining or supporting that authority.” …
Given the fluidity of the geopolitical situation and it’s own internal political divisions, American military doctrine will be better off if doctrinal definitions are “working” and lean toward the “open-ended”.