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The British Way in Counter-Insurgency, 1945-1967$
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David French

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199587964

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199587964.001.0001

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Winning Hearts and Minds

Winning Hearts and Minds

(p.174) 6 Winning Hearts and Minds
The British Way in Counter-Insurgency, 1945-1967

David French

Oxford University Press

Coercion was the mainstay of British counter-insurgency operations, and it was never welcomed by the people who experienced them. Conciliation, whether it took the form of a deliberate policy of making carefully calculated political concessions, as Thompson said it should, or whether it took the form of buying support thorough investment in projects to raise living standards, was only practiced on a limited scale. Attempts to buy support for the colonial regime by promoting investment in economic development foundered upon the shortages of money and the reluctance of the Treasury to provide more than the barest minimum of funding. Buying ‘hearts and minds’ was never a real possibility because the British could not afford the down payments.

Keywords:   coercion and civil population, new villages, development projects, treasury, security sector reform, political concessions and independence, psychological warfare

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