Demythologising Dhofar: British Policy, Military Strategy, and Counterinsurgency in Oman, 1963-1976.

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Abstract

This article re-examines the civil war (1963–1976) between the Sultanate of Oman and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Oman (PFLO), particularly the U.K.’s support of the government. Using archival evidence and private papers, it argues that the counter-insurgency (COIN) campaign’s image as “population-centric” is flawed, and that the British and Omani governments relied more on military measures against the PFLO to recapture Dhofar province than on the “hearts and minds” and civil development programmes emphasised in traditional accounts. It counsels against using Dhofar as a possible example of indirect military assistance in contemporary COIN, arguing that the conflict’s specific historical characteristics may not be replicated now or in the immediate future.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)423-456
Number of pages34
JournalJOURNAL OF MILITARY HISTORY
Volume79
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2015

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