Clear, Hold, and Build: Operationalizing the Comprehensive Approach

Julian Lindley-French, Paul Cornish and Andrew Rathmell

in The Oxford Handbook of War

Published in print January 2012 | ISBN: 9780199562930
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Politics & International Relations

 Clear, Hold, and Build: Operationalizing the Comprehensive Approach

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Getting armed forces and civilian specialists to work effectively together is seen by some charged with the conduct of war as sitting at the margins of the business of war. Of course, in so-called ‘kinetic’, i.e. extremely violent, environments, there is little room for civilians and militaries must go about their business. However, once a space begins to be held the introduction of civilians as early as possible is not just essential, but part of the conflict resolution cycle in which the security space is cleared, stability held and thereafter built through reconstruction and development (clear, hold, and build). The effective operationalization of the Comprehensive Approach is thus central to the future utility of NATO (and the European Union) in crisis management, and in return the Alliance is vital to the effective, legitimate conduct of the Comprehensive Approach if mission success is to be achieved in future hybrid war.

Keywords: armed forces; Comprehensive Approach; civilian specialists; conflict resolution; operationalization; hybrid war

Article.  5973 words. 

Subjects: Politics ; International Relations

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