Richard Clutterbuck

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Richard Clutterbuck

Richard Clutterbuck.jpg
Born(1917-11-22)22 November 1917
Died7 January 1998(1998-01-07) (aged 80)
Occupationsoldier and academic

Major-General Richard Lewis Clutterbuck CB OBE (22 November 1917 – 6 January 1998[1]) was a British Army officer who later became a pioneer in the study of political violence.


Clutterbuck was commissioned into the Royal Engineers in 1937 after graduating in mechanical sciences from Pembroke College, Cambridge. After Dunkirk, he went through both the Western Desert and Italian campaigns. The army sent Clutterbuck to different hotspots, including Palestine (1947) during the Irgun Zvei Leumi's terrorist campaign. In 1956, up against Chinese communists, Lieutenant-Colonel Clutterbuck shed his rank badges to go on patrol as an ordinary soldier. As chief engineer Far East, 1966–68, Brigadier Clutterbuck put into practice in northeast Thailand the counter-terrorist philosophy he was gradually evolving. His next job after Thailand was the top one, as Engineer-in-Chief (1968–70) at the Ministry of Defence. While in the Far East, however, he had started to read for a PhD in politics. In 1968, he enrolled at the University of London.

His last army post was back in the specialisation he had created for himself, as chief army instructor of the Royal College of Defence Studies, devoted to peacekeeping or "low-intensity operations" as they were now termed. His Who's Who entry gave his recreations as "sailing, canoeing and the study of revolution". On retirement in 1972 he received his PhD, and marched straight into the post of lecturer in political conflict at Exeter University.


  • Across the River (as Richard Jocelyn), 1957;
  • The Long Long War, 1966;
  • Protest and the Urban Guerrilla, 1973;
  • Riot and Revolution in Singapore and Malaya, 1973;
  • Living with Terrorism, 1975;
  • Guerrillas and Terrorists, 1977;
  • Britain in Agony, 1978, (revised edition 1980);
  • Kidnap and Ransom, 1978;
  • The Media and Political Violence, 1981, (revised edition 1983);
  • Industrial Conflict and Democracy, 1984;
  • Conflict and Violence in Singapore and Malaysia, 1985;
  • The Future of Political Violence, 1986;
  • Kidnap, Hijack and Extortion, 1987;
  • Terrorism and Guerrilla Warfare, 1990;
  • Terrorism, Drugs and Crime in Europe after 1992, 1990;
  • International Crisis and Conflict, 1993;
  • Terrorism in an Unstable World, 1994;
  • Drugs, Crime and Corruption, 1995,
  • Public Safety and Civil Liberties, 1997
  • Families, Drugs and Crime, 1998 (published posthumously)


  1. ^ CLUTTERBUCK, Maj.-Gen. Richard Lewis, Who Was Who, A & C Black, 1920–2015; online edn, Oxford University Press, 2014

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