By Wilson Tamanikaira
April 15, 2009 at 12:17 pm
Ways of countering a coup
I want to thank Solivakasama for posting my article which the F/T was unable to do. I think the media should never ever mention anything about the illegal junta in their articles.
What is important now is for the public of Fiji to be educated in the workings of a military coup. What is it, how it is conducted but most importantly how to counter it. A military coup can be easily dismantled and defeated if the public are aware of the strategies and tactics of the enemy .
Solivakasama and other media outlets can now be used as a vehicle for informing the public about successful counter coup measures. Learning simple strategies are the ammunition in rending coups useless and yes, there are many methods available.
We all know that a military coup is almost always carried out by a band of politically corrupt senior military officers. A good sign of an impending public coup is when a coup det tat first occurs within the military itself as was the case of the FMF back in 2005 – 2006.
Almost all military coups planners actually carry out their plans only if they have been influenced or guaranteed political support by external parties to legitimise their claims. This was the case in the pre – December 2006 military/ FLP public onslaught and post coup support.
If to some the acts of the military seem random then think again, they spend all day planning all this stuff. It is imperative that we also focus our attentions and resources into countering their plans. To not do so will be at our peril.
To bring the public into the picture, a coup is carried out in three critical stages,
1. Planning and rehearsals
2. The actual physical execution
The first two stages are the easiest and have been carried out prior and up to December 2006 as declared by Voreqe, codenamed as “The Clean up campaign”. This involved the heavy twin military and FLP propaganda barrage to discredit the ruling government and the actual physical takeover of the elected government.
The third stage is the most difficult and hazardous for the coup planners. This is what is transpiring as we speak.
The key to the success of the consolidation stage is time. The quick acceptance by the majority of the population of the objectives of the coup planners is critical because of the existing immediate ambiguity surrounding the physical takeover. Many people are still fixated on the propaganda rather than the proof.
However time can also be the coup planner’s number one nemesis if the consolidation drags out towards a long affair and as more people discover the untruths and cracks to the propaganda. The more the resistance grows, consolidation is made more difficult.
The military still has not been able to consolidate and as they resort to desperate measures by abrogating the constitution in lieu of officially ruling by force the more unpopular their regime will become.
But what comfort and hope does the population have in a seemly big menace?
Well, it is all a matter of perspective. The military only comprises of around 1,000 standing troops and a further 1,500 Police officers. The population comprises of close to 750,000 people. It is easy to see that the problem facing the coup planners is one of control. To employ and pay more military officers to suppress every member of the population is economically unsustainable for the military even over the short
So how do coup instigators project the illusion of omnipotence?
The coup planners of themselves do not have the resources or the capabilities to carry out the consolidation stage. They then depend on the infrastructure of government to do that thus it is an essential part of their takeover.
However, it is a major flaw to think that taking over a government’s infrastructure will lead to success because public buildings, offices, motor vehicles, pant and equipment and so forth are incapable of producing popular support.
The situation in Iraq and Afghanistan is a classic example of structure versus people power. The occupiers were totally mistaken into thinking that capturing the government infrastructures would bring them victory. The result is that the ruling elite are garrisoned in their public buildings surrounded by tight security whilst a hostile population encircles them.
What I am talking about is the consolidation of people power because we are many and they are few. We have strength in numbers and expertise there this is the real perspective that the public must adopt in order to counter this coup.
My next instalment will be on dismantling the consolidation stage of this coup. Solivakasama could also call for many other expert strategists who oppose this coup to form a Counter Coup thin tank to help design tactics to arm the public on countering these instigators.