War and Strategy: Back To Basics

Contents

  • Another Bloody Century?

    Colin S. Gray

    Colin Gray argues that there is sufficient continuity amid the change in strategic history for us to be confident that the 21st will be yet another bloody century — as usual.

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  • Strategy is a ‘high concept’ that nearly everyone claims to value. However, in this Infinity Journal Feature Article, Colin Gray explains why strategy’s nominal popularity typically is celebrated in its attempted application by a host of potentially disabling difficulties.

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  • Explaining Strategic Theory

    M.L.R. Smith and John Stone

    The word strategy is an over-used and much misunderstood term. M.L.R. Smith and John Stone show how strategic theory should be conceived as an analytical method. In the process they demonstrate how strategic theory offers a mind-opening and intellectually liberating path that is able to clarify complexity.

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  • Adam Elkus explains Clausewitz’s distinction between policy and strategy and argues for its signal importance in 21st century strategy. It’s not just semantics: knowledge and proper application of Clausewitz’s ideas about policy and strategy can help military analysts think better about today’s security problems, while a poor understanding of the policy-strategy distinction can produce conceptual confusion.

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  • The common history of grand strategic thought is dominated by only a couple of names, and the interpretation of this history is dominated by assumptions about the trajectory the evolution of the concept has taken based upon misinterpretations of the past. These two factors blend together into a mythology which not only obscures most of the real history and development of grand strategic thought but also supports the current major interpretations of the concept, which are otherwise unquestioned and arguably unjustified. Ultimately, the way to a full and conscientious understanding of grand strategy necessarily lies through a serious study of the concept’s history.

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  • Over the last thirty-five years, strategic culture has become a popular and influential concept. In this article, Antulio J. Echevarria II argues that proponents of the concept have never truly reconciled its inherent tensions.

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  • In this article David Betz finds much similarity between today’s talk of decisive ‘cyberwar’ and the overblown claims of the prophets of air power almost a hundred years ago.

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  • A large degree of the discussion on the United States’ focus on the Asia-Pacific has conflated Air-Sea Battle with strategy. In this article Nathan Finney argues that Air-Sea battle and its associated concepts are in reality merely the military’s contribution to strategy development; a starting point in the negotiation.

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War and Strategy: Back To Basics

War and Strategy: Back To Basics

IJ Special Edition