Beating Goliath: Why Insurgencies Win

Potomac Books, Inc.
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Beating Goliath examines the phenomenon of victories by the weak over the strong--more specifically, insurgencies that succeeded against great powers. Jeffrey Record reviews eleven insurgent wars from 1775 to the present and determines why the seemingly weaker side won. He concludes that external assistance correlates more consistently with insurgent success than any other explanation. He does not disparage the critical importance of will, strategy, and strong-side regime type or suggest that external assistance guarantees success. Indeed, in all cases, some combination of these factors is usually present. But Record finds few if any cases of unassisted insurgent victories except against the most decrepit regimes. Having identified the ingredients of insurgent success, Record examines the present insurgency in Iraq and whether the United States can win. In so doing, Record employs a comparative analysis of the Vietnam War and the Iraq War. He also identifies and assesses the influence of distinctive features of the American way of war on the U.S. forces' performance against the Iraqi insurgency. Make no mistake: insurgent victories are the exception, not the rule. But when David does beat Goliath, the consequences can be earth shattering and change the course of history. Jeffrey Record's persuasive logic and clear writing make this timely book a must read for scholars, policymakers, military strategists, and anyone interested in the Iraq War's outcome.
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About the author

Jeffrey Record is now professor of strategy at the U.S. Air Force's Air War College.
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Additional Information

Publisher
Potomac Books, Inc.
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Published on
Dec 31, 2007
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Pages
180
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ISBN
9781597970907
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Language
English
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Genres
History / Military / Strategy
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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"Wanting War" is the first comprehensive analysis of the often contradictory reasons why President George W. Bush went to war in Iraq and of the war s impact on future U.S. armed intervention abroad. Though the White House sold the war as a necessity to eliminate an alleged Iraqi threat, other agendas were at play. Drawing on new assessments of George W. Bush s presidency, recent memoirs by key administration decision makers, and Jeffrey Record s own expertise on U.S. military interventions since World War II, "Wanting War" contends that Bush s invasion of Iraq was more about the arrogance of post Cold War American power than it was about Saddam Hussein. Ultimately, Iraq was selected not because it posed a convincing security threat but because Baghdad was militarily helpless. Operation Iraqi Freedom was a demonstration of American power, especially the will to use it. Ironically, as Record points out, a war launched to advertise American combativeness is likely to lead U.S. foreign policymakers and military leaders to be averse to using force in all but the most favorable circumstances. But this new respect for the limits of America s conventional military power, especially as an instrument of ffecting political change in foreign cultures, and for the inherent risks and uncertainties of war, may prove to be one of the Iraq War s few positive legacies. Record argues that the American experience in Iraq ought to be a cautionary tale for those who advocate for further U.S. military action."
"A teacher is never a giver of truth—he is a guide, a pointer to the truth that each student must find for himself. A good teacher is merely a catalyst."—Bruce Lee

Within the pages of Striking Thoughts, you will find the secrets of Bruce Lee's incredible success— as an actor, martial artist, and inspiration to the world. Consisting of eight sections, Striking Thoughts covers 72 topics and 825 aphorisms—from spirituality to personal liberation and from family life to filmmaking—all of which Bruce lived by.

His ideas helped energize his life and career and made it possible for him to live a happy and assured life, overcoming challenging obstacles with seeming ease. His ideas also inspired his family, friends, students, and colleagues to achieve success in their own lives and this personal collection will help you in your journey too.

Sections include:On First Principles—including life, existence, time, and deathOn Being Human—including the mind, happiness, fear, and dreamsOn Matters of Existence—health, love, marriage, raising children, ethics, racism, and adversityOn Achievement—work, goals, faith, success, money, and fameOn Art and Artists—art, filmmaking, and actingOn Personal Liberation—conditioning, Zen Buddhism, meditation, and freedomOn the Process of Becoming—self-actualization, self-help, self-expression, and growthOn Ultimate (Final) Principles—Yin-yang, totality, Tao, and the truth This Bruce Lee Book is part of the Bruce Lee Library which also features:Bruce Lee: The Celebrated Life of the Golden DragonBruce Lee: The Tao of Gung FuBruce Lee: Artist of LifeBruce Lee: Letters of the DragonBruce Lee: The Art of Expressing the Human BodyBruce Lee: Jeet Kune Do
Jeffrey Record has specialized in investigating the causes of war. In "The Specter of Munich: Reconsidering the Lessons of Appeasing Hitler" (Potomac Books, Inc., 2006), he contended that Hitler could not have been deterred from going to war by any action the Allies could plausibly have taken. In "Beating Goliath: Why Insurgencies Win" (Potomac Books, Inc., 2007), Record reviewed eleven insurgencies and evaluated the reasons for their success or failure, including the insurgents stronger will to prevail. "Wanting War: Why the Bush Administration Invaded Iraq" (Potomac Books, Inc., 2009) includes one of Record s most cogent explanations of why an often uncritical belief in one s own victory is frequently (but not always) a critical component of the decision to make war. Record incorporates the lessons of these earlier books in his latest, "A War It Was Always Going to Lose: Why Japan Attacked America in 1941." The attack on Pearl Harbor is one of the most perplexing cases in living memory of a weaker power seeming to believe that it could vanquish a clearly superior force. On closer inspection, however, Record finds that Japan did not believe it could win; yet, the Japanese imperial command decided to attack the United States anyway. Conventional explanations that Japan s leaders were criminally stupid, wildly deluded, or just plumb crazy don t fully answer all our questions, Record finds. Instead, he argues, the Japanese were driven by an insatiable appetite for national glory and economic security via the conquest of East Asia. The scope of their ambitions and their fear of economic destruction overwhelmed their knowledge that the likelihood of winning was slim and propelled them into a war they were always going to lose."
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