Razzia: A Turning Point in Modern Strategy

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22 Citations (Scopus)


The razzia, a tactic of swift and brutal raids used by the French military against recalcitrant tribes in Algeria in the 1840s, was a necessary step in modern military thought. At first glance the destructive and violent razzias stand in stark contrast to the constructive and non-violent bureaux arabesan institutional ancestor of Provincial Reconstruction Teams. But both were developed in the same conflict and by the same men. These two innovations, this article argues, were also flipsides of the same coin: what today is called war oamong the people.o The razzia consequently appears as a necessary historic precursor for contemporary counterinsurgency doctrine.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)617-635
Number of pages19
JournalTerrorism and Political Violence
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2009


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