Insurgency and Terrorism


Insurgency and Terrorism

From Revolution to Apocalypse, Second Edition, Revised

Bard E. O'Neill

240 pages


June 2005


$24.95 Add to Cart

About the Book

A systematic, comprehensive, and straightforward textbook for analyzing and comparing insurgencies and terrorist movements, Insurgency and Terrorism was first published in 1990 to broad acclaim. Observers, scholars, students, military personnel, journalists, and government analysts worldwide found it worthy of study. Now Insurgency and Terrorism has been thoroughly revised and updated to cover activity that has since occurred in Afghanistan, Iraq, the Philippines, Colombia, and elsewhere and to address the new tactics and weapons used—and threatened.

Author Bard E. O'Neill, the director of studies of insurgency and revolution at the National War College, addresses insurgencies with respect to ultimate goals, strategies, forms of warfare, the role and means of acquiring popular support, organizational dynamics, causes and effects of disunity, types of external support, and government responses. Course syllabi included.


“Far from the model of a rigid prescriptive text, this book approaches its subject in a way that allows full consideration of complexities in this difficult area. . . .The author provides not only a useful text for studies of political violence but also—and more importantly—a readable guide for security practitioners.”—Security and Management

“This paperback is a tour de force of modern insurgency. . . . O’Neill has the capacity to make the reader enter the mind and tactics of insurgents. The book ends with a self-study syllabus that can expand the reader's study of terrorism and insurgencies. O’Neill’s book is highly recommended in this current combat environment.”—Marine Corps Gazette

“Seminal . . . a modern classic. Dr. O’Neill’s treatise is now required reading in American and British military schools and war colleges. Analytical and insightful, O’Neill compares and contrasts many recent insurgencies and provides a theoretical framework in which to view current and future struggles.”—Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists

“Should be on every military professional’s reading list and is a must read for anyone deploying to Afghanistan, Iraq, or any potential hotspot around the world. . . . Whether one is able to get one’s hands on the first edition or the revised second edition, the results will be the same: a greater appreciation and understanding of the enemy, the battlefield, and what is required to fight and win in the twenty-first century. . . . Without a doubt, Mr. O'Neill’s book arms soldiers and leaders with a way to define the threat and develop ways to defeat it.”—Armor Magazine

“Well-organized, clearly written, and solidly thought out.”—Marine Corps Gazette

“A career military man will find it worthwhile to spend some time reading and studying this book.”—Infantry

“Required reading that should be in infantrymen’s rucksacks and on the desks of all twenty-first-century national security experts. As the principal military adviser to two CIA task forces, I used this text daily. O’Neill’s second edition addresses the tumultuous beginning of our new century and has direct application on the battlefield as well as in the classroom. To suppress terrorism, to undermine terrorism’s ideological support, and to win the war of ideas, you need some of the better ideas found in this book.”—Col. Nick Pratt, USMC (Ret.), Director, Program on Terrorism and Security Studies, and Professor of Strategy and International Politics, George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies

“Anyone interested in the role of force in international affairs should read Insurgency and Terrorism. Bard O’Neill has educated thousands of our leaders. Now his celebrated framework for analyzing insurgencies is available to a wider audience. This book cries out to be read and studied.”—Maj. Gen. Perry M. Smith, USAF (Ret.), former U.S. Air Force director of plans

“A gold mine for the library of any serious student of revolutionary warfare. This may well be the most in-depth and scholarly treatise on insurgency and terrorism of the decade.”—Gen. P. X. Kelley, USMC (Ret.)

“Bard O’Neill offers an excellent conceptual framework for studying insurgencies and terrorism, underscored with numerous real-world examples. His is the ideal textbook or reference aid for soldiers, analysts, students, and scholars who seek a better understanding of contemporary conflicts.”—Chuck Fahrer, assistant professor of geography, Georgia College and State University