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Military Strategy and Policy Studies

Added August 25, 2015
Type: Letort Papers
Using Target Audience Analysis to Aid Strategic Level Decisionmaking. Authored by Dr. Steve Tatham.
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The author evaluates how advanced social science research can be applied to latent and emergent threats globally to provide strategic policy options.
Added August 11, 2015
Type: Monograph
Duffer’s Shoal: A Strategic Dream of the Pacific Command Area of Responsibility. Authored by Colonel Russell N. Bailey, Colonel (NZ) Christopher J. Parsons, Colonel Elizabeth R. Smith, Lieutenant Colonel Derek J. O'Malley, Lieutenant Colonel Bob Dixon, Ms. Laura McAleer.
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This monograph is a powerful primer for strategic and operational thinking. The successful defense of Duffer’s Drift required the nuanced application of hard-earned knowledge; ignoring even one tactical lesson guaranteed certain defeat.
Added August 07, 2015
Type: Other
2015-16 Key Strategic Issues List. Edited by Professor John F. Troxell.
The recently published National Military Strategy emphasizes the unpredictability of the global security environment. According to General Dempsey, “global disorder has significantly increased while some of our comparative military advantage has begun to erode. We now face multiple, simultaneous security challenges…” General Odierno echoes this concern by pointing to the “increased velocity of instability,” and emboldened potential adversaries that have “magnified the risk to U.S. interests around the world.” Responding to this period of geopolitical uncertainty demands thoughtful and careful analysis of a wide array of strategic issues. The Strategic Studies Institutes’ (SSI) annual Key Strategic Issues List (KSIL) addresses this need by providing a list of high-priority topics organized to support the Army's most important strategic objectives, issues that must be addressed to ensure the Army of 2025 and beyond will continue to meet the needs of the nation. Part I of the KSIL lists the Chief of Staff of the Army’s top five topics, all five of which will be addressed as integrative research projects by the US Army War College. Part II, “Priority Research Areas,” is a compilation of critical topics developed by the Army War College and Commands and organizations throughout the Army. Part III consists of the Army Warfighting Challenges. Students and researchers are encouraged to get in touch with the topic sponsors listed in the document, tackle one of these issues, and contribute to the knowledge base needed to support the future direction of the Army.
Added July 29, 2015
Type: Monograph
China’s Rise and Reconfiguration of Central Asia’s Geopolitics: A Case for U.S. "Pivot" to Eurasia. Authored by Roman Muzalevsky.
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China’s emergence as a global actor has questioned the position of the United States as the strongest power and the future of the Washington-led global order. To achieve the status of a truly global player wielding influence in all dimensions of power would require China to leverage its regional influence in Central Asia.
Added July 29, 2015
Type: Monograph
Reassessing the Barriers to Islamic Radicalization in Kazakhstan. Authored by Zhulduz Baizakova, Mr. Roger N. McDermott.
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This critical study examines the numerous barriers which serve to mitigate the spread of religious extremism and the formation of a local support base for Islamic terrorism in Kazakhstan. These factors, including historical, linguistic, cultural, religious, and social development, are considered in order to understand fully the driving factors in the evolution of Kazakhstan’s counterterrorist policy and the state’s ongoing efforts to restrict the growth of Islamic radicalization.
Added July 28, 2015
Type: Book
The Chinese People's Liberation Army in 2025. Edited by Mr. Roy Kamphausen, Dr. David Lai.
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The Chinese People’s Liberation Army of 2025 is the 2014 edition of an ongoing series on the People’s Liberation Army co-published by the Strategic Studies Institute, the National Bureau of Asian Research, and the United States Pacific Command. This volume builds on previous volumes and identifies potential trajectories for PLA force modernization and mission focus, and how these potential changes could impact external actors.
Added July 22, 2015
Type: Book
A Hard Look at Hard Power: Assessing the Defense Capabilities of Key U.S. Allies and Security Partners. Edited by Gary J. Schmitt.
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Following the end of the Cold War, less attention has been paid to America’s allies, especially their “hard power” capabilities, despite the United States and its allies going to war more frequently than before. This volume addresses that gap, providing a holistic account of allied hard power and, in turn, the ability—and, indirectly, the willingness—of those same partners to use force independently or in concert with the United States and other allies.
Added June 29, 2015
Type: Monograph
Russian Ballistic Missile Defense: Rhetoric and Reality. Authored by Keir Giles.
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Russia continues to oppose strenuously U.S. plans for missile defense in Europe, despite the fact that Russia itself seeks to develop comparable missile defense systems, that, by their own logic, would be equally destabilizing. This monograph reviews Russian plans and progress toward implementing them, to prepare the ground for inevitable future confrontation with Russia over the rollout of U.S. systems.
Added June 25, 2015
Type: Monograph
The Strategic Lessons Unlearned from Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan: Why the ANSF Will Not Hold, and the Implications for the U.S. Army in Afghanistan. Authored by Dr. M. Chris Mason.
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The wars in Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan were lost almost before the first American shots were fired, not on the battlefield, but at the strategic level of war. This book explains why, and describes year-by-year, what will happen in Afghanistan from 2015 to 2019.
Added June 17, 2015
Type: Monograph
The New Russian Engagement with Latin America: Strategic Position, Commerce, and Dreams of the Past. Authored by Dr. R. Evan Ellis.
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Although overshadowed by China, Russia's re-engagement with Latin America and the Caribbean, which includes military deployments, arms sales, and the negotiation of base access agreements, impacts the regional security environment and potentially challenges U.S. national security. This monograph provides one of the first broad, in depth analyses of Russian engagement in the region, including an examination of its political and economic, as well as military activities, with an examination of implications for the U.S. and recommendation for U.S. policymakers.
Added June 04, 2015
Type: Letort Papers
The Strategic Importance of the Global Oil Market. Authored by Dr. Leif Rosenberger.
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The global oil market in 2015 is not what it used to be. This Letort Paper explains why there are new winners and losers both inside the United States, as well as globally, and how to respond to challenges to the international oil industry.
Added June 03, 2015
Type: Monograph
Iraq’s Shia Warlords and Their Militias: Political and Security Challenges and Options. Authored by Dr. Norman Cigar.
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The rise of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) has seen a resurgence of the Shia militias in Iraq and unprecedented prominence for the warlords who lead them. Given the presence of U.S. Landpower in Iraq as part of the fight against ISIS and the close links of some of the militias with Iran, understanding the militias’ role and capabilities is key for force protection and operational security, as well as for policy concerns.
Added May 29, 2015
Type: Monograph
Gold, Blood, and Power: Finance and War Through the Ages. Authored by James Lacey.
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Wars are won not by the state with the biggest war chest, but by the state with the key to opening it. This survey of the link between finance and war demonstrates the crucial importance an endless stream of money is for strategic success.
Added May 28, 2015
Type: Other
From Cooperation to Competition - The Future of U.S.-Russian Relations. Authored by COL Gregory K. Anderson, COL Gert-Jan Kooij, LTC Karen L.T. Briggman, LTC Joseph E. Hilbert, Lt Col Christopher T. Lay, Dr. James C. McNaughton. Edited by Dr. John R. Deni.
Russian aggression in 2014 caught U.S. policy and strategy off guard, forcing reactive measures and reevaluation of the U.S. approach toward Russia. Moscow employed nonlinear methodologies and operated just beneath traditional thresholds of conflict to take full advantage of U.S. and NATO policy and process limitations. In light of this strategic problem, the U.S. Army War College (US - AWC), conducted a wargame that revealed four key considerations for future policy and strategy.
Added May 12, 2015
Type: Monograph
From Frozen Ties to Strategic Engagement: U.S.-Iranian Relationship in 2030. Authored by Roman Muzalevsky.
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The possibility of P5+1 and Iran reaching a nuclear deal and benefits of a U.S.-Iranian strategic détente prompt an assessment of a U.S.-Iranian strategic relationship over the next 15 years. This work identifies three possible types of such relationship, providing recommendations for the United States, Iran, and their partners to cultivate and prepare for a strategic shift that such a revised relationship entails.
Added May 04, 2015
Type: Monograph
The Gulf Moment: Arab Relations Since 2011. Authored by Dr. Florence Gaub.
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The Arab Spring has changed the region not only at the domestic level, it has set in motion a profound transition from how these regional states once related to each other to that of a new intra-regional dynamic. In diplomatic terms, it has entered a Gulf Moment, where regional decisions are now taken by the Gulf states themselves.
Added April 30, 2015
Type: Book
Stand Up and Fight! The Creation of U.S. Security Organizations, 1942-2005. Edited by Colonel Ty Seidule, Dr. Jacqueline E. Whitt.
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Stand Up and Fight is a collection of essays that explores how new National Security Organizations are stood up—that is, formed, organized, funded, and managed—in the first years of their existence. From Joint ventures to combatant commands to cabinet-level departments, each organization’s history reveals important themes and lessons for leaders to consider in forming a new organization.
Added April 15, 2015
Type: Letort Papers
Parsing Chinese-Russian Military Exercises. Authored by Dr. Richard Weitz.
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During the past decade, China and Russia have deepened their defense cooperation to include a range of bilateral and multilateral military exercises. These have multiple purposes and the potential to evolve into a more significant security development in coming years.
Added April 10, 2015
Type: Monograph
The State-Society/Citizen Relationship in Security Analysis: Implications for Planning and Implementation of U.S. Intervention and Peace/State-building Operations. Authored by Dr. Yannis A. Stivachtis.
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This monograph argues that the design and effective implementation of peacemaking and peace/state-building policies require that the U.S. strategists are fully aware of what constitutes a security issue for social groups and individuals in third countries. Consequently, in order to create strong states in post-conflict situations, U.S. strategic planning and actions should be based on the adoption of the broaden definition of security as well as the idea of human security
Added April 03, 2015
Type: Monograph
Thucydides Was Right: Defining the Future Threat. Authored by Dr. Colin S. Gray.
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To define future threat is, in a sense, an impossible task, yet it is one that must be done. The only sources of empirical evidence accessible are the past and the present; one cannot obtain understanding about the future from the future.
Added April 02, 2015
Type: Monograph
Strengthening Statehood Capabilities for Successful Transitions in the Middle East / North Africa Region. Authored by Dr. Mohammed El-Katiri.
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The post-revolution political elites in Egypt, Libya, and Tunisia are struggling to strengthen their legitimacy in the eyes of the public, but their attempts to gather support for much-needed new political institutions and reforms have made limited progress. This monograph explains why and suggests what can be done to help.
Added April 01, 2015
Type: Monograph
Confidence Building in Cyberspace: A Comparison of Territorial and Weapons-Based Regimes. Authored by Dr. Mary Manjikian.
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Confidence-building measures among nations can establish trust, prevent misunderstandings, and establish stable conditions in the international system. In considering how to establish confidence-building measures in cyberspace, analysts can learn from past examples—including the establishment of weapons-based confidence-building measures in the areas of biological, chemical, and nuclear weapons, as well as in the Indo-Pakistan Conflict.
Added March 26, 2015
Type: Other
Project 1704: A U.S. Army War College Analysis of Russian Strategy in Eastern Europe, an Appropriate U.S. Response, and the Implications for U.S. Landpower. Edited by COL Douglas Mastriano, LTC Derek O'Malley.
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The 2014 Russian annexation of Crimea and its ongoing war against Ukraine is a turning point in its relations with Europe and the United States. Yet, NATO and the United States are yet to offer a viable strategy on how it will answer this emerging threat. Project 1704 takes a hard look at the changing strategic environment in Europe and offers an approach to maintain stability in Europe.
Added February 20, 2015
Type: Monograph
Breaking the Nordic Defense Deadlock. Authored by Dr. Stefan Forss, Colonel (Ret.) Pekka Holopainen.
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Finland, Sweden, Norway, and Denmark are urgently considering how best to optimize limited defense resources in the face of a newly assertive Russia. This monograph proposes enhanced defense cooperation, both regionally and with the United States, as a means to ensure the security of U.S. allies in a strategically vital region.
Added February 20, 2015
Type: Letort Papers
Prospects for Iran's New Direction. Authored by Keir Giles.
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This monograph, completed ahead of the November 2014 deadline, examines some of the underlying factors which will be constant in dealing with a nuclear capable Iran under President Hassan Rouhani, and which will help determine the success or failure of talks in 2015.
Added February 11, 2015
Type: Monograph
Senior Conference 50, The Army We Need: The Role of Landpower in an Uncertain Strategic Environment. Edited by Major Charlie D Lewis, Dr. Rachel M Sondheimer, Colonel Jeffrey D Peterson.
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Senior Conference 2014, the 50th iteration of the United States Military Academy (USMA) Senior Conference, explored emerging trends and their implications for the Army’s strategic contribution to national security.
Added February 11, 2015
Type: Monograph
Always Strategic: Jointly Essential Landpower. Authored by Dr. Colin S. Gray.
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Why is Landpower always strategic? Is Landpower still Landpower when it is dependently joint?
Added February 03, 2015
Type: Book
New Realities: Energy Security in the 2010s and Implications for the U.S. Military. Edited by Dr. John R. Deni.
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How are the profound, even revolutionary changes in today’s global energy markets affecting U.S. national security and the U.S. military? Experts from academia, think tanks, the Pentagon, and the private sector address these and related questions in this timely, important edited volume.
Added January 30, 2015
Type: Monograph
Do Fewer Resources Mean Less Influence? A Comparative Historical Case Study of Military Influence in a Time of Austerity. Authored by Dr. Mary Manjikian.
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The issue of how military resources should be reallocated after a military drawdown is not new. This monograph considers how this question was addressed in post-World War I Britain, and in the United States in the Post-Vietnam and Cold War environment, as well as making comparisons with the present environment.
Added January 23, 2015
Type: Monograph
Army Support of Military Cyberspace Operations: Joint Contexts and Global Escalation Implications. Authored by Jeffery L. Caton.
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Military cyberspace operations have been ongoing since before the advent of the Internet and their influence on traditional military operations continues to increase. What are the significant changes in mission and structure of Department of Defense offensive and defensive cyberspace activities over the past decade? How do joint and Army cyberspace military operations fit into the complex and dynamic sphere of daily network defense as well as international deterrence and escalation?