Military Strategy Magazine - Volume 8, Issue 1

Volume 8, Issue 1, Summer 2022 17 limitations of each. Unfortunately, academe may avail little in this regard, though partnering with it is essential. Most of academe will pursue knowledge for its own sake, not for the purpose of improving military practice. Thus, academe will typically generate knowledge according to a timeline that may be largely independent of strategic necessity. The last step may well be the most difficult one. The US Army in coordination with the rest of the US Joint community must develop a defensible theory of knowledge. To be sure, little agreement exists among philosophers, epistemologists, and others who have studied the nature of knowledge and how humans come to knowwhat they know. Nonetheless, if the US Army desires to be a profession and if cultivating a body of expert knowledge is a prerequisite to having a legitimate claim to being a profession, then the US Army (and eventually the entire Joint community) must decide what expert knowledge is and how to represent it in its doctrine. This need not be a complicated, philosophical definition. But the US Army needs to give thought to it and to dedicate resources to it, perhaps through a series of symposia. A practical, defensible definition may be all that is necessary to prevent the US Army from confusing knowledge with articles of faith and war with battle. References [i] Antulio J. Echevarria II, Toward an American Way of War (Strategic Studies Institute, Carlisle PA: 2004); and Antulio J. Echevarria II, “Transforming America’s Way of Battle: Revising Our Abstract Knowledge,” in Don M. Snider and Lloyd J. Matthews, The Future of the Army Profession, Revised and Expanded 2d Ed., (New York: McGraw-Hill, 2005), 367-84. [ii] ADP Publication 1-01, Army Doctrine Primer (2019), chap. 1, p. 1. Figure 1 The Persistence of America’s Way of Battle Antulio J. Echevarria II