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Essay: Winning 'hearts and minds'

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  • Published: 21 September 2015*
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INTRODUCTION
Winning ‘heart and minds’ it is one of the strategies in psychological operation on counterinsurgency operation. This term has been used in war such as Emergency in Malaya. It became slogan of ‘winning heart and minds’ and be used at many times in commercial advertising campaign.
The U.S. Army/ Marine Corps Counterinsurgency Field Manual it carefully distinguishes between the two components of the phrase, the affective component of the ‘hearts’ and the cognitive component of ‘mind’ . A model referred to as ‘clear, hold, and build’, implicitly stresses the centrality of civilian support. Another example is David Kilcullen writes ‘hearts’ means persuading people their best interests are served by your success. While, ‘minds’ means convincing them that you can protect them and that resisting you is pointless.
Psychological Operation is broadly defined as the planned use of communications to influence human attitudes and behavior. They consist of political, military, and ideological actions conducted on target groups to create desired behavior, emotions, and attitudes. In Psychological Operation we can learn about our target enemy, their belief, strength, and vulnerabilities. This will make the psychological operation easier.
A psychological warfare campaign is a war of the mind. Psychological operation can be doing by face to face communication, audio visual media, audio media, visual media, and theme. For example, the voice-aircraft that contains tapes of call from a member of the MCP to influence
This strategic of the psychological operations ‘win hearts and minds’ show had used in recent times. There is certain example that I study that show the phrase of ‘win hearts and mind’ it is powerful word and play a rule in any method and operations. I show the Malayan Emergency as an example for the phrase ‘win hearts and mind’ that has used in operation of psychological warfare on counterinsurgency.
MALAYAN EMERGENCY 1948-1960
The Malayan Emergency 1948 to 1960 was happened in Malayan because of armed rebellion launched by Malaya Communist Party (MCP). They comes to take over 18 June 1948, Malaya was declared emergency by Sir Edward Gent. He is British High Commissioner in Malaya at that time. The communist want to take over the administrative British in Malaya. A lot of violence and assault that had been doing by communist, thus the British do the counterinsurgency.
The strategy of ‘winning hearts and minds’ is considered key to successful Counterinsurgency . It is the art of undermining the campaign and sustaining the existing authority. Among the best known strategies of psychological operation on counterinsurgency is to win hearts and minds of civilians. Civilian support is considered to be the key to win counterinsurgency because populations offer supplies, intelligence, sanctuary, training grounds, and recruitment on which the insurgent and counterinsurgent alike depend.
A model that conducted by British ‘Winning hearts and minds’ it is the most successful key in the psychological operation. To win such support, the counterinsurgent provides administrative services, economic incentives, and protection through regulated ‘repower, population control, and policing operations . This method relies on close cooperation with forces that might otherwise support the insurgents.
What they do to win ‘hearts and minds’ of the population? The ‘Briggs Plan’ that introduce by Sir Harold Briggs create a resettlement areas to separate the population and moves them to the protected zone called ‘new villages’. The purpose is to disable the communist movement in Malayan. These new resettlements give the population confident and hope. The ‘Briggs Plan’ was radically different from previous applications of military strategy, all of which had a ‘military-driven, insurgent- focused, search and destroy approach’. ‘Home Guard’ was create to protect the ‘new villagers’ while it is a part of the campaign that encouraged the participation of the population.
As we know that the ‘Templer Plan’ it is continuous from the ‘Briggs Plan’. He launched the operation known as Operation Psychological Warfare from 1952-1954. Templer policy is ‘gain hearts and minds of the peoples’. To achieve the psychological operations, Templer does ‘Safe Conduct Passes and Reward Pardon’. ‘Safe Conduct Passes’ it is a bid of security, finance and health for members MCP to surrender to the government. While, ‘Reward Pardon’ is a reward that given to the informer about MCP. Besides that, to encourage the members of MCP to surrender, Templer have dropped leaflets about surrender. In October 1953, they have 20 million of leaflets.
Lieutenant General Templer also believes that he could improve the situation by focusing on the overall well-being of the local population. He understood that insurgency is a war of the people that requires a political solution be found to subversion, rather than the destruction of the guerrilla fighters. The strategy ‘win heart and minds’ are spearheaded by Templer. He believes it was possible to win hearts ‘if the people are treated well and their expectations met’. This strategy makes the Chinese civilian into cooperation. British help Chinese in economic, protected rubber plantations and the tin mines. According to the mainstream interpretation, the security situation improved dramatically under Templer.
In these ‘new villagers’, Templer introduced social measures and development projects that were always coupled with a coercive dimension for the loyalist cause to become accepted in the minds of the people. Population control measures were indeed attached’ hearts and minds’ program such as a curfew, movement restrictions, food rationing, collective fines and preventive custody. However, in certain areas Templer declared the setting up ‘white areas’ that had more population control system.
CONCLUSION
As a conclusion, the ‘hearts and minds’ strategy has truly mythical quality of psychological warfare. ‘Winning heart and minds’ means gaining the trust of a population by gaining respect, not imposing values or a biased view, but by bringing them security and above all development capabilities.
‘Hearts and minds’ is also one of the strategic in psychological operation to against target audiences or enemy. To win the war we must know our target enemy, the behavior, strength, weakness and so on. Thus, we can influence their emotions, motives, objective reasoning and perceptions.
In Malayan Emergency, British took many ways to make psychological operation success. In my opinion, the psychological operation is not a new military tactics anymore it can be used in everywhere as long as the word is ”to influence people’

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