Examines how the US, the Soviet Union and various European powers have developed their grand Strategies - how they have integrated their political, economic and military goals in order to preserve their long-term interests in times of war and peace.
This book explores fundamental questions about grand strategy, as it has evolved across generations and countries. It provides an overview of the ancient era of grand strategy and a detailed discussion of its philosophical, military, and economic foundations in the modern era. The author investigates these aspects through the lenses of four approaches - those of historians, social scientists, practitioners, and military strategists. The main goal is to provide contemporary policy makers and scholars with a historic and analytic framework in which to evaluate and conduct grand strategy. By providing greater analytical clarity about grand strategy and describing its nature and its utility for the state, this book presents a comprehensive theory on the practice of grand strategy in order to articulate the United States' past, present, and future purpose and position on the world stage.
Some sixty years after the Far Eastern War ended, this innovative new collection brings together five distinguished UK-based scholars and five from Japan to reappraise their respective country's leadership in the Malaya and Burma campaigns. This leadership is analyzed on various levels, ranging from the grand strategic to operational. The Japanese contributors examine the reasons for their forces, brilliant advances in 1941-42, whereas the British writers have to account for the disastrous defeat, characterized by the poor leadership of senior commanders such as Bennett and Percival. Between 1943 and 1945, the tables were turned dramatically, so the failure of Japanese command decisions then comes under critical scrutiny and the British have to explain how defeat was transformed into victory. Above all, this volume should stimulate interest in different methods and styles of military leadership in view of the contrasting approaches of the British and Japanese in the Second World War.
Throughout the entire Cold War era, Vietnam served as a grim symbol of the ideological polarity that permeated international politics. But when the Cold War ended in 1989, Vietnam faced the difficult task of adjusting to a new world without the benefactors it had come to rely on. In Changing Worlds, David W. P. Elliott, who has spent the past half century studying modern Vietnam, chronicles the evolution of the Vietnamese state from the end of the Cold War to the present. When the communist regimes of Eastern Europe collapsed, so did Vietnam's model for analyzing and engaging with the outside world. Fearing that committing fully to globalization would lead to the collapse of its own system, the Vietnamese political elite at first resisted extensive engagement with the larger international community. Over the next decade, though, China's rapid economic growth and the success of the Asian "tiger economies," along with a complex realignment of regional and global international relations reshaped Vietnamese leaders' views. In 1995 Vietnam joined the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), its former adversary, and completed the normalization of relations with the United States. By 2000, Vietnam had "taken the plunge" and opted for greater participation in the global economic system. Vietnam finally joined the World Trade Organization in 2006. Elliott contends that Vietnam's political elite ultimately concluded that if the conservatives who opposed opening up to the outside world had triumphed, Vietnam would have been condemned to a permanent state of underdevelopment. Partial reform starting in the mid-1980s produced some success, but eventually the reformers' argument that Vietnam's economic potential could not be fully exploited in a highly competitive world unless it opted for deep integration into the rapidly globalizing world economy prevailed. Remarkably, deep integration occurred without Vietnam losing its unique political identity. It remains an authoritarian state, but offers far more breathing space to its citizens than in the pre-reform era. Far from being absorbed into a Western-inspired development model, globalization has reinforced Vietnam's distinctive identity rather than eradicating it. The market economy led to a revival of localism and familism which has challenged the capacity of the state to impose its preferences and maintain the wartime narrative of monolithic unity. Although it would be premature to talk of a genuine civil society, today's Vietnam is an increasingly pluralistic community. Drawing from a vast body of Vietnamese language sources, Changing Worlds is the definitive account of how this highly vulnerable Communist state remade itself amidst the challenges of the post-Cold War era.
Some of the nation's most respected scholars of international affairs examine the debates over U.S. grand strategy in light of U.S. security policies and interests in tactical regions around the world. The contributors begin by describing the four grand strategies currently competing for dominance of U.S. foreign policy: neo-isolationism argues that the United States should not become involved in conflicts outside specifically defined national interests selective engagement proposes that the United States, despite its position as the world's only remaining superpower, should limit its involvement in foreign affairs cooperative security advocates that the United States is not and should not act as an imperial country primacy asserts that the United States is an empire and therefore it should conduct an expansive foreign policy. Focusing on regions that present new challenges to U.S. grand strategy, such as Sub-Saharan Africa, the Middle East, and Latin America, the contributors offer the most current examinations of U.S. policies and assess the effectiveness of competing strategies in each region. The Obligation of Empire offers an innovative set of foreign policy initiatives that explore the tensions between global agendas and regionalist approaches. Contributors: Andrew J. Bacevich, Doug Bandow, Dale Davis, Thomas Donnelly, James J. Hentz, Clifford Kiracofe, Charles Kupchan, Jeffrey Stark, S. Frederick Starr, and Brantley Womack. James J. Hentz, associate professor of international studies at the Virginia Military Institute, is the coeditor of New and Critical Security and Regionalism: Beyond the Nation State.
With the Lisbon Treaty in place and the European Union increasingly involved in international crisis management and stabilization operations in places near and far, this volume revisits the trajectory of a European strategic culture. Specifically, it studies the usefulness of its application in a variety of circumstances, including the EU’s operations in Africa and the Balkans as well as joint operations with NATO and the United Nations. The contributors find that strategic culture is a useful tool to explain and understand the EU's civilian and military operations, not in the sense of a ‘cause’, but as a European normative framework of preferences and constraints. Accordingly, classical notions of strategic culture in the field of international security must be adapted to highlight the specific character of Europe's strategic culture, especially by taking the interaction with the United Nations and NATO into account. Though at variance over the extent to which security and defence missions have demonstrated or promoted a shared strategic culture in Europe, the authors reveal a growing sense that a cohesive strategic culture is critical in the EU’s ambition of being a global actor. Should Europe fail to nurture a shared strategic culture, its actions will be based much more on flexibility than on cohesion. This book was published as a special issue of Contemporary Security Policy.
While American national security policy has grown more interventionist since the Cold War, Washington has also hoped to shape the world on the cheap. Misled by the stunning success against Iraq in 1991, administrations of both parties have pursued ambitious aims with limited force, committing the country's military frequently yet often hesitantly, with inconsistent justification. These ventures have produced strategic confusion, unplanned entanglements, and indecisive results. This collection of essays by Richard K. Betts, a leading international politics scholar, investigates the use of American force since the end of the Cold War, suggesting guidelines for making it more selective and successful. Betts brings his extensive knowledge of twentieth century American diplomatic and military history to bear on the full range of theory and practice in national security, surveying the Cold War roots of recent initiatives and arguing that U.S. policy has always been more unilateral than liberal theorists claim. He exposes mistakes made by humanitarian interventions and peace operations; reviews the issues raised by terrorism and the use of modern nuclear, biological, and cyber weapons; evaluates the case for preventive war, which almost always proves wrong; weighs the lessons learned from campaigns in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Vietnam; assesses the rise of China and the resurgence of Russia; quells concerns about civil-military relations; exposes anomalies within recent defense budgets; and confronts the practical barriers to effective strategy. Betts ultimately argues for greater caution and restraint, while encouraging more decisive action when force is required, and he recommends a more dispassionate assessment of national security interests, even in the face of global instability and unfamiliar threats.