Recently, however, this trend seems to have waned, with the development of the \'War on Terror\'. While we have coverage of the conventional forces involved in counter-insurgency conflicts across the world, there is little in the way of discussion on the irregular, paramilitary and rebel forces that oppose them. This is not to say that we have never addressed such irregulars. A fair part of the two Elite books on the Yugoslav Wars focuses on the militias, the Mujahideen have appeared in the aforementioned Afghanistan book, there is a plate depicting a PLO guerrilla in one of the Lebanon titles, and a fair part of Central American Wars 1959-89 considers the guerrilla armies involved. We even have a book dedicated to the Irish Volunteer Soldier.
While these groups may have been touched upon here and there, there is nothing in the way of dedicated and focused coverage. From terrorists to mercenaries and all the myriad of armed, angry and active forces in the world, there is a gap in Osprey\'s coverage. Now, one thing upon which we do pride ourselves is the detail and breadth of our coverage, so this is a source of some confusion for me. We obviously do not have a problem in discussing the non-professional side of modern warfare, as evidenced by the \'here and there\' discussions in existing titles, and have covered regular forces with histories as reprehensible as any irregular force.
This got me thinking about why we have overlooked the vast majority of opponents to regular troops in modern conflicts. I could only come up with two possible objections:
- Placing them in an existing series, such as Men-at-Arms or Elite gives them an implicit respectability associated with such labels that suggest regular forces.
- There is no interest from our readership in terrorists, mercenaries and paramilitaries of all ilks.