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Counterinsurgency in Prison

Jul 31, 2020
For a couple months now, people in counterinsurgency circles have been buzzingabout the commander of the prison complex at Iraq’s Camp Bucca, a Marine two-star named Douglas Stone. Word is that he’s applying COIN techniques in the prison — like, basically, being respectful of inmates — and has yielded results. I don’t know anything about this firsthand, but a guy I’ve become friendly with, Harvard’s Andrew Woods, recently visited Bucca and profiled Stone for the Financial Times:
Since arriving in Iraq, he has instituted significant changes to coalition detention centres, including new review boards which explain to detainees why they are being held and what they can do about it; a pledge-and-guarantor programme whereby soon-to-be-released detainees swear in front of a judge that they will not return to the fight; increased family visits to the prisons; education programmes, including maths, Arabic and English classes; vocational training programmes; and religious discussion classes, where privately hired sheikhs discuss the Koran with detainees.
The reforms may seem obvious as a matter of law, or common sense, but they represent a significant shift from the US military’s previous detention regime in Iraq, under which increasing numbers of detainees were warehoused and riots were commonplace.
Seen from above, the 20-odd compounds of the Bucca camp have a clinical stillness that befits what goes on below: what Stone calls his massive “social experiment”, and what his critics call the world’s largest religious re-education camp.
Camilo Wood

Camilo Wood

Camilo Wood has over two decades of experience as a writer and journalist, specializing in finance and economics. With a degree in Economics and a background in financial research and analysis, Camilo brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to his writing. Throughout his career, Camilo has contributed to numerous publications, covering a wide range of topics such as global economic trends, investment strategies, and market analysis. His articles are recognized for their insightful analysis and clear explanations, making complex financial concepts accessible to readers. Camilo's experience includes working in roles related to financial reporting, analysis, and commentary, allowing him to provide readers with accurate and trustworthy information. His dedication to journalistic integrity and commitment to delivering high-quality content make him a trusted voice in the fields of finance and journalism.
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