If a key to military victory is to "get there first with the most," the true test of the great general is to decide where "there" is—the enemy's Achilles heel. Here is a narrative account of decisive engagements that succeeded by brilliant strategy more than by direct force. The reader accompanies those who fought, from Roman legionaries and Mongol horsemen to Napoleonic soldiery, American Civil War Rebels and Yankees, World War I Tommies, Lawrence of Arabia's bedouins, Chinese revolutionaries, British Desert Rats, Rommel's Afrika Korps, and Douglas MacArthur's Inchon invaders. However varied their weapons, the soldiers of all these eras followed a commander who faced the same obstacles and demonstrated the strategic and tactical genius essential for victory. "All warfare is based on deception," wrote Sun Tzu in The Art of War in 400 BCE. Bevin Alexander shows how great generals have interpreted this advice, and why it still holds true today.
The authors’ examination of post Cold War national and geopolitical issues regarding nuclear proliferation and the effects of Chinese sponsorship of the Pakistani program is eye opening. The reckless “nuclear weapons programs for sale” exporting of technology by Pakistan is truly chilling, as is the on-again off-again North Korean nuclear weapons program.
As an institution relying on individuals and resources provided by society, the military has been studied by scholars from a wide range of disciplines: political science, sociology, history, psychology, anthropology, economics and administrative studies. The methodological approaches in these disciplines vary from computational modelling of conflicts and surveys of military performance, to the qualitative study of military stories from the battlefield and veterans experiences. Rapidly developing technological facilities (more powerful hardware, more sophisticated software, digitalization of documents and pictures) render the methodologies in use more dynamic than ever.
The Routledge Handbook of Research Methods in Military Studies offers a comprehensive and dynamic overview of these developments as they emerge in the many approaches to military studies. The chapters in this Handbook are divided over four parts: starting research, qualitative methods, quantitative methods, and finalizing a study, and every chapter starts with the description of a well-published study illustrating the methodological issues that will be dealt with in that particular chapter. Hence, this Handbook not only provides methodological know-how, but also offers a useful overview of military studies from a variety of research perspectives.
This Handbook will be of much interest to students of military studies, security and war studies, civil-military relations, military sociology, political science and research methods in general.
Drawing on his vast experience as a commander during the first Gulf War, and in Bosnia, Kosovo, and Northern Ireland, General Rupert Smith gives us a probing analysis of modern war. He demonstrates why today’s conflicts must be understood as intertwined political and military events, and makes clear why the current model of total war has failed in Iraq, Afghanistan, and other recent campaigns. Smith offers a compelling contemporary vision for how to secure our world and the consequences of ignoring the new, shifting face of war.
Japan's business executives have long applied Musashi's teachings to their business methods. This book - the original life-guide by Japan's greatest warrior - means you can do so too. Written in 1645 by the most famous and unconquerable of all samurai, A Book of Five Rings is the classic guide to kendo swordmanship and a distillation of the philosophies of Zen, Shinto and Confucius. The West is now discovering what the Japanese have always known: that the ancient wisdom of the Samurai Way provides a strategy for decision and action in all areas of life - the home, the battleground and the boardroom.
Looking at interwar France, Britain, and Germany, Posen challenges each theory to explain the German Blitzkrieg, the British air defense system, and the French Army's defensive doctrine often associated with the Maginot Line. This rigorous comparative study, in which the balance of power theory emerges as the more useful, not only allows us to discover important implications for the study of national strategy today, but also serves to sharpen our understanding of the origins of World War II.
Grunt tackles the science behind some of a soldier's most challenging adversaries—panic, exhaustion, heat, noise—and introduces us to the scientists who seek to conquer them. Mary Roach dodges hostile fire with the U.S. Marine Corps Paintball Team as part of a study on hearing loss and survivability in combat. She visits the fashion design studio of U.S. Army Natick Labs and learns why a zipper is a problem for a sniper. She visits a repurposed movie studio where amputee actors help prepare Marine Corps medics for the shock and gore of combat wounds. At Camp Lemmonier, Djibouti, in east Africa, we learn how diarrhea can be a threat to national security. Roach samples caffeinated meat, sniffs an archival sample of a World War II stink bomb, and stays up all night with the crew tending the missiles on the nuclear submarine USS Tennessee. She answers questions not found in any other book on the military: Why is DARPA interested in ducks? How is a wedding gown like a bomb suit? Why are shrimp more dangerous to sailors than sharks? Take a tour of duty with Roach, and you’ll never see our nation’s defenders in the same way again.
Drawing on a wide range of examples from the Great Peloponnesian War to the Second World War, Vietnam, and the ongoing conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan, Gray ably shows how great military thinkers of the past and present have acted strategically in their various ideological, political, geographical and cultural contexts. Looking to the future, he argues that strategy will continue to provide a vital tool-kit for survival and security, but that the global threat posed by nuclear weapons remains an on-going challenge without obvious practical solutions. As Gray boldy asserts, there is no promised land ahead, only hard and dangerous times that will require us to master the theory and practice of strategy to secure our own future.