Terrorism and the Art of War 

A conventional army will try to carry out a strategy of annihilation, seeking to destroy the enemy’s armed forces as quickly as possible. While Irregular forces (Guerrillas and Terrorists) are compelled to undertake a strategy of attrition trying to wear down the enemy’s will to fight. Why is this true? Which strategy was the United States Employing in Viet Nam? What strategy are the Islamic Terrorists using in their operations?

The major strategies of wars adopted by fighting parties in wars and battles are the annihilation and attrition strategies. The annihilation strategy seeks to conquer and destroy the enemy within the shortest time possible while the strategy of attrition seeks to wear down the enemy while killing people indiscriminately (Silke, 2015). Most conventional armies in the United States use the annihilation strategy while the amorphous grouping like the terrorist groups Al-Shabaab and Al-Qaida use the attrition strategy.

 In Vietnam, the United States Army used the annihilation strategy. The Army was fully funded by the government and they had the state of the art weaponry such as war aircraft, missiles, war tanks, high-velocity machine guns, and bombs (Silke, 2015). The main reason why it was possible for the army to adopt this strategy is that they have highly trained army officers capable of using their skills, experience, and weapons to annihilate the Vietnamese army that was characterized by low funding, less sophisticated weapons, and lack of trained personnel.

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Islamic terrorist groups, on the other hand, use the attrition strategy because it is a cheap war strategy. Even though it is a cheap strategy to implement, it is possible to inflict maximum casualty on the enemy. Some of the reasons why it is cheap to implement this strategy is that it does not require state of the art weaponry and one does not need to have and maintain a conventional army to implement the strategy (Silke, 2015). One just gets a small number of loyal and trusted people who identify a target then commence an attack. Less than ten people can implement this strategy and it can cause maximum damage. A case example is the 9/11 attack that caused the deaths of more than 3,000 people.          


What is the “Policy Hill” being discussed in reading 55? Why has it been necessary? How is the “Policy Hill” evolving in White House decision-making?

The president of the United States holds the constitutional right and duty to make executive decisions that affect the country. However, the decisions to be made are so many that it is impossible for the president to make all the calls by himself and that is the reason why the constitution allows him to have a cabinet that is legally mandated to help advice or make these decisions (Hall, 2015). It has, however, been argued that the cabinet plays a minor role in decision making, with many presidents in the past preferring to have trusted advisors and friends help them in formulating policies and making critical decisions on matters of national importance. This type of decision-making is what is known as the Policy Hill decision-making process or organ.  

It is important to mention that this type of policymaking decision is not supported by the constitution but it plays a very important role in running the country (Hall, 2015). The president surrounds himself with people he trusts and he believes they have the capacity to help him achieve his dreams for the country. He then relies heavily on this small group of people for advice and he takes their perspective on national matters very seriously.

Recently, many administrations have been relying heavily on Policy Hill decision-making to make decisions that have major impacts on the nation. This has left many officers mandated by the constitution to help make critical government decisions in the dark, especially concerning major decisions made by the president and his team of close trusted friends and officials (Hall, 2015). This type of leadership has made many commentators to start questioning the legality of the Policy Hill decision-making process, as the constitution does not allow group presidency at any one time. For this reason, it would be important for legally mandated people to be involved in decision-making processes.   


Is there a relationship between broken families and suicides and drug overdoses? If so, can the Police make a positive difference? (Reading 67)

The family is the smallest unit in the society and it plays a major role in offering its members with love, companionship, and support. When the family as a unit disintegrates then some family members may find it very hard to cope with the challenges of day-to-day living. Research has found out that there is a positive correlation between broken families’ incidences of suicide and drug abuse (Dawson & Stanko, 2015). The main reason for this is that people from broken families do not have that family support. Family support gives an individual in distress the love and companionship and then alleviates the feeling of stress. This enables an individual to cope easily with the problems of life and not fall into depression and other psychological challenges. It is also important to mention that many people fall into drug abuse to fill in the gap that the family unit would have filled in their lives. Suicides among the youth are on the increase and the main reason for this has been identified as broken families (Dawson & Stanko, 2015).

 Seeing the importance of family in a person’s life, the police can play a major role in resolving this problem. They may offer counseling services to the youths involved in drugs, as well as, talking to their parents with the intention of coming up with a solution that can be used to help astray youths (Dawson & Stanko, 2015). 


Dawson, P. and Stanko, E. (2015). An Evaluation of the Diamond Initiative: Year Two

Findings.London: London Criminal Justice Partnership.  

Hall, H. (2015). Terrorism: Strategies for Intervention. New York, NY: Routledge.

Silke, A. (2015). Prisons, Terrorism, and Extremism: Critical Issues in Management,

Radicalisation and Reform. New York, NY: Routledge.

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