« 'the sky darkens as they are all beaten' | Main | heroic jobs »

April 29, 2014



From the dog's point of view, the options would seem to be:
1) Westmoreland: Try to constrain the cat into fighting a pitched battle, either by mistake or misjudgement (cf. Bruce at Bannockburn), or by attacking assets which are valuable to the insurgent but not movable (cf. Operation Madrigal in Afghanistan, or the Vercors rising in France), in which the dog's superior conventional combat ability will give it the advantage.
2) Templer: Conduct a successful hearts and minds programme in order to divorce the cat from its support base among the rural peasant population (that would be you and the missus), forcing the cat to retreat deeper into the jungle and reducing its ability to carry out attacks and obtain supplies, intelligence and recruits.
3) McNamara: Interdict the cat's access to supply and reinforcement by improved border security operations - this is what the dog seems to be doing already.
4) McChrystal: Decrease the cat's advantage in mobility and surprise through technical intelligence means by, eg, persuading you to put a bell on its collar.

Less viable options:
5) Dog should enforce a split between the insurgency and the population by interning the entire population (you and the missus again, I'm afraid) in secure camps with controlled access for the duration of COIN operations.
6) Collective punishment: every time the cat ambushes the dog, the dog should take a shit on the carpet.


I should add that this is one of the best B&T posts I can remember.


7) retreat southwards over the Cheetham Hill border with the intention of re-invading later, but take to growing opium instead.


genius. I love this post.

We just moved house with two elderly cats who have been trying to deal with local cats invading their new territory. I've been supporting them by opportunistically throwing water at the enemy when situation arises but Ive been having misgivings about the total absecence of any thought out strategy on my part.


It is unclear from context whether 7) is being suggested as an option for the cat, the dog, or jamie.



"It's now been around six months since we introduced Molly, the new cat, to the household. "

The next six months will be crucial!


8) Kitson*. Create a countergang to oppose the cat with its own tactics, preferably by recruiting a rival cat.

*the name seems significant


9) Syria. Depopulation by firepower. Bark continuously until Jamie and the missus can't stand it and hide in West Yorkshire, taking the cat with them.


Actually, I think 8) is the staff solution. The conflict ends up being a succession of low-level skirmishes between the cats. Only Jamie is then in a position to arbitrate the eventual settlement, under which he retreats to the pub with the dog, leaving the new Republic of Catistan in place but neocolonially dependent on him for Whiskas.

Barry Freed

It's now been around six months since we introduced Molly, the new cat, to the household...

Is anyone else reading this with Martin Sheen as Capt. Willard's voice in their head?


Well, obviously now.

Counterinsurgency and humorous cats - it's like the 2006 internet all over again!

Richard J

OT (but agreeing with everybody else) Our host pointed out on Twitter that Gerry Adams last night made a slightly creepy joke about Shergar on his Twitter feed. Today he's been arrested 'by prior arrangement' in connection with Jean McConville.

I'm beginning to wonder if that was more than just coincidence.


10) Wolfowitz: Attack another cat on the street that she's always had it in for. This will* set off a chain reaction, with other beleaguered pets rallying to her support in a wave of pro-canine insurrection that will curb and cow your own cat into behaving nicely.

* Not actually guaranteed to work, perhaps.


Why waste your time with other cats on the street? A proper alpha dog would have the courage and vision to kick over an ants nest. Those little buggers have at least two legs too many. And if you had access to the information I have, you'd see it's all part of the bigger picture.


What a superb post! Brightened my evening.

chris y

Richard J, are you suggesting that Adams will cop for Shergar in a plea deal to be left out of the McConville investigation? Seems a bit early for that.


The Chicago Way: Cat brings a lion; dog brings a wolf

Chris Brooke

Let me add my voice to those of the other admirers: this is a magnificent essay.


Obviously, the dog needs drones! =)

Barry Freed

Can I interest your Jack Russell in some hi-tech cat detecting dowsing rods?


very probably, but she'd just chew them.


All that's missing is a cartoon soundtrack and hi-tech weaponry from ACME


As a family we had a cat just like Molly. In the summer my mothers ankles were permanently covered in scratches as a result of him ambushing her particularly in the garden. The dog would make a huge detour around the garden to avoid the cat and the stairs were a favourite sleeping place thus preventing anyone from going up and down. The only person the cat did not attack was my Father. This was because of two things. One was the cat would sit on the kitchen work surface near the table and would swipe at food anyone tried to eat. My Father covered a piece of meat with mustard and let the cat take it! No more swiping! Secondly he smartly tapped the cat with a rolled up newspaper the first time the cat attacked him. No more attacks on him.


There's only one language these people cats understand, and that's Force.

chris y

I assume everybody has seen this.

The comments to this entry are closed.

friends blogs


Blog powered by Typepad

my former home