Volume 4, Issue 3

Spring 2015

The Post Operational Level Age: How to Properly Maintain the Interface between Policy, Strategy, and Tactics in Current Military Challenges

Yacov Bengo & Shay Shabtai

In the present environment and with the military problems it currently faces, conceptualizing of the Operational Level as a central component in methods of command, the structure of headquarters and processes of operational planning, creates more difficulties and failures than it does advantages. It may actually be said to have become an impediment to the process required. The best response to the current military challenges is direct contact between the political, the strategic and the tactical.

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Strategy and Security

Colin S. Gray

Strategy is about security, and it is always made in a political process. The theory for strategy takes two forms, general (and eternal) and for the military instruments particular to time and place. Strategy always must be done tactically and operationally. A primary challenge is the need to achieve the strategic effect necessary for political success.

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Strategy and the Intervening Concept of Operational Art

Lukas Milevski

Operational art has been frequently discussed, but rarely from the perspective of strategy with the aim of examining what operational art means for strategy. Classical notions of strategy differed on the practicalities of achieving battle, but later developments focused attention on what would become, and thereby enabled, the operational level. Based on this historical overview, the relationship between operational art and strategy is explored to ascertain their compatibility. Both operational art and classical strategy recognize the necessity of nuance in thought and practice in the conduct of war, but operational art arguably prolongs the contemporary misunderstanding and misuse of strategy.

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Strategy and Arms Races: The Case of the Great War

Antulio J. Echevarria II

This article argues the arms race before 1914 was driven by the military strategies of deterrence and coercion; as such, it was as much a tool of policy as the actual use of force in wartime. The case of the Great War suggests arms races do not in themselves cause wars; rather it is the strategies driving them that matter.

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Strategy and the role of the enemy

Peter S. Randall

It is easy for the strategist to overlook the role that the enemy plays in strategy, yet to do so compromises how effective strategy can be. The enemy is not only a definitional necessity for strategy, but also must be considered with regards the ends, ways and means of strategy. The intelligent strategist must also consider the enemy, not only as an obstacle to be overcome, but something to learn from.

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Mass Killings of Civilians in Counter-Insurgency: Killing More, Winning More?

Spyridon A. Plakoudas

This article studies the incidence of mass violence against non-combatants during a counter-insurgency campaign and investigates how and why this practice can (under specific circumstances) prove useful for a government in the campaign to suppress an insurgency.

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