New PDF release: Making Sense of War: Strategy for the 21st Century

By Alan Stephens

ISBN-10: 0521676649

ISBN-13: 9780521676649

Making experience of battle offers a accomplished and transparent research of the advanced enterprise of waging warfare. It supplies readers a radical knowing of the main suggestions in strategic concept, innovations that experience continued because the Athenian normal Thucydides and the chinese language philosopher/warrior solar Tzu first wrote approximately approach a few 2500 years in the past. It additionally examines the effect on strategic selection and armed forces technique of political, criminal and technological switch. This ebook discusses technique at each point of pageant, utilizing a thematic strategy and utilizing historic examples from 500 BCE to the current. It discusses the contraints and possibilities dealing with army commanders within the twenty first century, and demonstrates that the formula of army method will remain maybe the only most vital accountability for senior safety officers. Making feel of conflict bargains unique insights into the imperatives of army luck within the period of uneven conflict.

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Extra resources for Making Sense of War: Strategy for the 21st Century

Sample text

3 In modern times one of the more spectacular examples of an indirect approach was provided by the theatrical US commander, General Douglas MacArthur, early in the Korean War. With his main force almost driven off the southern tip of the Korean Peninsula by rampaging communist troops, on 15 September 1950 MacArthur mounted an adventurous amphibious landing at Inchon, some 240 kilometres to the North Koreans’ rear on the west coast. Now outflanked and with their supply lines cut, the enemy were forced to retreat up the peninsula as quickly as they had advanced down it.

However, because we do not live in an ideal world, psychological coercion might not always be an acceptable option for one or both protagonists. Or, for reasons that sometimes seem impenetrable to others, one side might be determined to pursue military action, regardless of the circumstances. The war between the 34 TR A D I T I O N A L W A R F I G H T I N G C O N C E P T S A N D P R A C T I C E S United Kingdom and Argentina over the Falkland Islands in 1982, for example, has been likened to two bald men fighting over a comb, such was the questionable logic of the conflict; nevertheless, once the Argentine occupation of the islands became known, it was soon obvious that British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher would take whatever military measures were necessary to dislodge the invaders.

The first is his understanding that war ultimately is a clash of wills in which the objective is not the destruction of the enemy’s physical courage, but his moral courage. The second is his formalisation of the notion of the centre of gravity as the pivot against which decisive force should be applied or, in the case of our own centres, be resolutely defended. And the third is his caution that the conduct of war will invariably be affected by ‘fog’ and ‘friction’, the former meaning confusion about what is happening, the latter that things will go wrong no matter how well we have prepared.

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Making Sense of War: Strategy for the 21st Century by Alan Stephens


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