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Strategic Studies Institute

United States Army War College

The Source for National Security

Research & Analysis

Recent Publications


  • Publication cover with title

    Added April 22, 2014

    Assessing the People's Liberation Army in the Hu Jintao Era

    Edited by Mr. Roy Kamphausen, Dr. David Lai, Mr. Travis Tanner.
    View the Executive Summary

    How has President Hu Jintao contributed to China’s military modernization?

  • Publication cover with title

    Added April 16, 2014

    Augmenting Our Influence: Alliance Revitalization and Partner Development

    Edited by Dr. John R. Deni.
    View the Executive Summary

    The role of allies and partners in the future of American Landpower is discussed.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added March 31, 2014

    Russia's Counterinsurgency in North Caucasus: Performance and Consequences

    Authored by Dr. Ariel Cohen.
    View the Executive Summary

    Understanding the conflict in North Caucasus may be the key to understanding the future of the post-communist Russian state and its interaction with Islam, as well as regional mountainous insurgencies. The region’s turbulent past and present make it a potential source of future waves of instability both within Russia and abroad—especially if the Kremlin and the Russian and local elites fail to deal with accumulating local economic, social, religious, and political pressures.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added March 19, 2014

    Defense Planning for National Security: Navigation Aids for the Mystery Tour

    Authored by Dr. Colin S. Gray.
    View the Executive Summary

    What do we believe we know about the future with sufficient reliability for it to serve as a basis for defense planning? Science and social science are both utterly disarmed by the complete absence of data about the future, from the future.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added March 12, 2014

    Turkey-Kurdish Regional Government Relations After the U.S. Withdrawal From Iraq: Putting the Kurds on the Map?

    Authored by Bill Park.
    View the Executive Summary

    The withdrawal of U.S. combat forces from Iraq at the end of 2011 left behind a set of unresolved problems in the relationship between the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), and the Federal Government in Baghdad, compounded by Erbil’s subsequent pursuit of an energy relationship with Turkey. This has deepened both Turkish-Iraqi and regional sectarian tensions and, along with developments in Syria, has raised the specter of wider Kurdish self-determination, a prospect that Washington has been slow to recognize.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added March 11, 2014

    Legality in Cyberspace: An Adversary View

    Authored by Keir Giles, Dr. Andrew Monaghan.
    View the Executive Summary

    The United States and its allies are in general agreement on the legal status of conflict in cyberspace. But other key cyber actors have radically different ideas on key concepts of cyber warfare, including when a state of war exists. This paper explores the Russian approach to legal constraints governing actions in cyberspace, in order to assist in formulating an effective response to Russian cyber initiatives.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added March 05, 2014

    The Chinese People's Liberation Army and Information Warfare

    Authored by Dr. Larry M. Wortzel.
    View the Executive Summary

    The Chinese government plans to establish a new air defense intercept zone which will include the Diaoyu or Senkaku Islands, sovereignty over which is disputed by Japan, China, and Taiwan. Due to complaints of cyber penetrations attributed to the Chinese People’s Liberation Army, U.S. Departments of Justice, Homeland Security, and State are devising new means to protect intellectual property and secrets from the PLA’s computer network operations.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added February 14, 2014

    Senior Officer Talent Management: Fostering Institutional Adaptability

    Authored by Lieutenant Colonel (Ret) Michael J. Colarusso, Lieutenant Colonel David S. Lyle.
    View the Executive Summary

    Former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates characterized the "greatest challenges facing the Army" as the "institutional and bureaucratic constipation" of its officer management systems. In this book, Mike Colarusso and Dave Lyle examine the Army's industrial-era personnel practices and prescribe a senior officer talent management approach that they believe is better suited to the demands of tomorrow.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added January 08, 2014

    New Realities: Energy Security in the 2010s and Implications for the U.S. Military - Executive Summaries

    Edited by Dr. John R. Deni.
    The rapidly changing global energy supply situation, coupled with a host of social, political, and economic challenges facing consumer states, has significant implications for the United States generally and for the U.S. military specifically. The U.S. Army War College gathered experts from the policymaking community, academia, think tanks, the private sector, and the military services at the Reserve Officers Association in Washington, DC on 19-20 November 2013 to address first the major ‘new realities’ both geographically and technologically and then the specific military implications. This compendium of executive summaries is based on the presentations delivered at that conference, which was funded through the generous support of the U.S. Army War College Foundation.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added December 30, 2013

    Africa's Booming Oil and Natural Gas Exploration and Production: National Security Implications for the United States and China

    Authored by David E. Brown.
    View the Executive Summary

    Two key long-term energy trends are shifting the strategic balance between the United States and China, the world’s superpower rivals in the 21st century: first, a domestic boom in U.S. shale oil and gas dramatically boosting America’s energy security; second, the frenetic and successful search for hydrocarbons in Africa making it an increasingly crucial element in China’s energy diversification strategy.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added December 27, 2013

    Dangerous Ground: The Spratly Islands and U.S. Interests and Approaches

    Authored by Lieutenant Colonel Clarence J. Bouchat (USAF, Ret.).
    View the Executive Summary

    The Spratly Islands disputes are the nexus of interests and clashes for U.S. partners and competitors that will draw in the United States as it involves itself more in Asia-Pacific issues. This analysis may help readers to better understand these disputes and how the United States may better address them.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added December 10, 2013

    Politics and Economics in Putin's Russia

    Edited by Dr. Stephen J. Blank.
    View the Executive Summary

    Is this the beginning of the end for Putin's system? The authors investigate the structural bases for Russia's domestic challenges, if not crisis.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added December 03, 2013

    U.S. Governmental Information Operations and Strategic Communications: A Discredited Tool or User Failure? Implications for Future Conflict

    Authored by Dr. Steve Tatham.
    View the Executive Summary

    Are U.S. information operations and strategic communications fit for purpose? This issue is debated herein, and the author concludes that, if the United States is to compete with emerging powers such as China and Russia, it needs to significantly modernize and update information operations and strategic communications. But, despite what critics and even Congress may say, these important programs must not be cut.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added November 20, 2013

    What Is Next for Mali? The Roots of Conflict and Challenges to Stability

    Authored by Dr. Dona J. Stewart.
    View the Executive Summary

    In 2012, Mali simultaneously faced a military coup, a Tuareg nationalist movement, al-Qaeda in the Islamic Magreb control in the north, and a drought-fueled humanitarian emergency. Military intervention restored security; addressing the underlying factors of the crisis is key to achieving long-term stability.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added November 14, 2013

    State Collapse, Insurgency, and Counterinsurgency: Lessons from Somalia

    Authored by Dr. J. Peter Pham.
    View the Executive Summary

    After years as the world’s prime example of a failed state—one that gave rise to catastrophic humanitarian crises, a wave of maritime piracy, and Islamist militancy, including an al-Qaeda-linked insurgency that came close to toppling the internationally-recognized government—Somalia appears to be turning the corner. In this provocative monograph, Dr. Pham argues that there are indeed lessons to be learned from the insurgency and counterinsurgency in Somalia, but they are not the ones usually advanced by diplomats and soldiers.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added November 12, 2013

    Building Better Armies: An Insider’s Account of Liberia

    Authored by Dr. Sean McFate.
    View the Executive Summary

    This monograph explains, step-by-step, how to demobilize militias and raise armies in conflict-affected states by someone who has done so successfully.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added November 06, 2013

    Reforming the Police in Post-Soviet States: Georgia and Kyrgyzstan

    Authored by Dr. Erica Marat.
    View the Executive Summary

    Both Georgia and Kyrgyzstan offer important guidelines for conducting successful police reform in a former Soviet state, advice that could be helpful to the Middle Eastern states currently undergoing rapid political transformation.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added November 03, 2013

    Central Asia After 2014

    Edited by Dr. Stephen J. Blank.
    View the Executive Summary

    The papers collected here offer assessments of Sino-Russian rivalry, the U.S.-Russian rivalry, and a neglected but critical topic, Chinese military capability for action in Central Asia. All of these issues are essential for any informed analysis of the future of Central Asian security, as well as relations among the great powers in Central Asia.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added October 28, 2013

    Changing Minds In The Army: Why It Is So Difficult and What To Do About It

    Authored by Dr. Stephen J. Gerras, Dr. Leonard Wong.
    View the Executive Summary

    In a time of extraordinary fiscal and national security uncertainty, it seems naïve to assume that all, or even most, of a strategic leader’s current assumptions will be just as relevant several years into the future. This monograph highlights the need for Army senior leaders, in the midst of change, to periodically question their deep-seated beliefs on critical issues—and perhaps change their minds—rather than relying solely on what they have long believed to be true.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added October 22, 2013

    Forging an American Grand Strategy: Securing a Path Through a Complex Future. Selected Presentations from a Symposium at the National Defense University

    Edited by Dr. Sheila R. Ronis.
    View the Executive Summary

    Issues associated with U.S. grand strategy were discussed on November 8-9, 2011, at the National Defense University symposium, "Forging an American Grand Strategy: Securing a Path Through a Complex Future." This volume includes several presentations from the event.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added October 18, 2013

    NATO Missile Defense and the European Phased Adaptive Approach: The Implications of Burden-Sharing and the Underappreciated Role of the U.S. Army

    Authored by Mr. Steven J. Whitmore, Dr. John R. Deni.
    View the Executive Summary

    NATO's ballistic missile defense initiative remains a work in progress, but a lack of interceptor and sensor contributions on the part of the European allies is likely to have significant implications for the U.S. Army. In particular, the U.S. Army is likely to face increased manpower demands, materiel requirements, and training needs in order to meet the demand signal created by the NATO ballistic missile defense program.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added October 16, 2013

    Conflict Management and Peacebuilding: Pillars of a New American Grand Strategy

    Edited by Dr. Volker C. Franke, Dr. Robert H. Dorff.
    View the Executive Summary

    The authors examine the utility of the U.S. Government’s whole-of-government (WoG) approach for responding to the challenging security demands of operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. They specifically discuss the strategic objectives of interagency cooperation particularly in the areas of peacebuilding and conflict management.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added September 30, 2013

    A Transatlantic Bargain for the 21st Century: The United States, Europe, and the Transatlantic Alliance

    Authored by Dr. Ellen Hallams.
    View the Executive Summary

    In the 21st century, the transatlantic bargain that has framed the relationship between the United States and its NATO allies is under more scrutiny than ever before. The bargain was a Cold War construct suited to its time; what is required now is a transatlantic bargain that generates a new culture of transatlantic partnership between the United States, NATO, and the European Union.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added September 26, 2013

    The Effectiveness of Drone Strikes in Counterinsurgency and Counterterrorism Campaigns

    Authored by Dr. James Igoe Walsh.
    View the Executive Summary

    Drones have become an important part of the U.S. counterinsurgency and counterterrorism arsenal. But the available evidence shows that they are not always effective, and their use can have unpredictable consequences.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added September 24, 2013

    The Real "Long War": The Illicit Drug Trade and the Role of the Military

    Authored by Professor Geoffrey Till.
    View the Executive Summary

    With a shift in focus and priority from likely involvement in large-scale counterinsurgency operations, the limited likelihood of continental traditional warfighting operations, together with the onset of an era of budgetary austerity, the U.S. Army may need to give greater attention to its role in responding to the many nontraditional threats to the peace and security of the United States. Of these, the illicit trade in drugs ranks highly because of its massive effects on human, national, and international security.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added September 23, 2013

    An Assessment of the DoD Strategy for Operating in Cyberspace

    Authored by Dr. Thomas M. Chen.
    View the Executive Summary

    This monograph critically examines the Department of Defense Strategy for Operating in Cyberspace, which was published in July 2011. What are the messages conveyed, and is the Strategy adequate to maintain U.S. superiority in the face of existing and future cyber threats?

  • Publication cover with title

    Added September 19, 2013

    Closing the Candor Chasm: The Missing Element of Army Professionalism

    Authored by Colonel Paul Paolozzi.
    View the Executive Summary

    If transparency and forthright communication are valued within the Army, why is candor nearly absent in doctrine and supporting literature? Stewards of the Profession build trust through authentic communication—educated, trained, and modeled in application. Candor cannot be muted, creating a chasm between what is espoused and communicated.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added August 27, 2013

    The Security Concerns of the Baltic States as NATO Allies

    Authored by Dr. James S. Corum.
    View the Executive Summary

    America’s small NATO allies have unique views concerning international threats. This monograph explores the security environment of the three Baltic States and how the Baltic policymakers see the future of their relationship with NATO and the United States in an uncertain world.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added August 21, 2013

    2013-14 Key Strategic Issues List

    Edited by Professor John F. Troxell.
    For several years, the Strategic Studies Institute has annually published the Key Strategic Issues List (KSIL). The overall purpose of this document is to make students and other researchers aware of strategic topics that are of special interest to the U.S. Army. Part I of KSIL is entitled "Army Priorities for Strategic Analysis" (APSA) and is a list of high-priority topics submitted by Headquarters, Department of the Army. Part II is entitled "Command Sponsored Topics" and represents the high-priority command-specific topics submitted by MACOMs and ASCCs. This KSIL provides military and civilian researchers worldwide a listing of the Army's most critical national security issues.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added August 19, 2013

    The Causes of Instability in Nigeria and Implications for the United States

    Authored by Lieutenant Colonel Clarence J. Bouchat (USAF, Ret.).
    View the Executive Summary

    The political economy problems of Nigeria, the root cause for ethnic, religious, political and economic strife, can be in part addressed indirectly through focused contributions by the U.S. military, especially if regionally aligned units are more thoroughly employed.

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