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    Wednesday, June 11, 2008

    private sector fight against Terror

    Civilian Irregular Market-State National Security Operators

    Cannoneer No. 4 | Monday, 2 June 2008

    The new SERVIAM is out. Commander Joseph A. Gattuso, USN (Ret.) has an article in it entitled Trading Places:
    How and Why National Security Roles Are Changing
    which fits in nicely with recent discussions on this blog and elsewhere of non-military, non-governmental responses to threats to the security of the United States. Don’t agree with all of it, but here are the good parts. Bolding added by me.

    . . . the nation-state (1860–1990), which had as its legitimizing basis welfare of every individual. This is the form of governance with which most are familiar. In the nation-state, a collection of individuals gives the governing entity power to govern; in turn, the governing entity agrees to ensure the material well-being of the governed.
    Like the state-nation before it, the nation-state form of governance is rapidly losing its legitimacy because it can no longer execute its fundamental purpose: to assure the material well-being and security of those it governs.

    What he calls a nation-state sounds like a welfare-state to me.

    There are many reasons for this erosion of the nation-state’s ability to keep its people either safe or prosperous: the ubiquitous nature of information; the ease with which money, culture, and disease cross national borders; the increase in transnational threats such as famine, migration, environmental problems, and weapons of mass destruction; a globalized economy eroding middle-tier wages; and the concept that human rights transcend a nation’s sovereignty and that human values are best determined by the calculus of apportioned economic advantage. The nation-state form of governance is disappearing, and a new form is emerging.

    The welfare-state promised more than it could deliver. Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness is the bargain. The welfare-state implies actually obtaining happiness is something the state should guarantee.

    This new kind of governance is known as a market-state, described fully in Philip Bobbitt’s The Shield of Achilles: War, Peace, and the Course of History. Where the nation-state derived its legitimacy from an agreement to provide for the material well-being of its constituents, the market-state derives its legitimacy from an agreement that it will maximize opportunity for its citizens.

    Because of computers, communications, and weapons of mass destruction, the enemies of our civilization live in the private sector. They express their anger and frustration in the private sector, against private citizens, and against our civil infrastructure, most of which is now in the hands of the private sector. When attacking those in the public sector— for instance, attacks against coalition soldiers in Iraq—they attack while swimming in Mao’s private sector sea. They do not attack on a conventional battlefield in ranks with tanks; they shoot from houses, rooftops, or alleys, or they fire mortars from the midst of martyr-minded women and children, all within the private sector. If Iran or North Korea attacks us, do we seriously think they will attack our military? National security has been removed from the unambiguous, ordered realm of governments and thrown squarely into the bitter, bloody, goldfish-bowl arena of the private sector.

    For example, within hours of a surgical Israeli airstrike, Hezbollah knows which families need blankets, food, power, water, or medical attention and supplies. Hezbollah faithful are on the ground immediately, distributing $100 bills to families (in the private sector) who have suffered loss or damage. Hezbollah will race in with dead bodies of women and children in an ambulance, demolish the structure to make it appear as though there was wanton destruction, remove the bodies from the ambulance, place them dramatically in the rubble, invite the media in to film the scene, and then gather their grisly props and race to another media opportunity. The world gasps.

    With significant hesitation, most market-state nations, the United States and Britain as the main examples, have decided that they will conduct a proxy fight, using private sector elements to outsource the fight against their private sector enemies. Times have changed: assuring national security requires fighting for it in the private sector, with the force most suited to that battlespace.



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