Volume 9, Issue 2

Winter 2024



Deterring War without Threatening War: Rehabilitating the West’s Risk-averse Approach to Deterrence

Antulio J. Echevarria II

This article contributes to the debate concerning why NATO failed to deter Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022. It first describes the deterrence policy and supporting strategy the West implemented; it then offers an alternative to the West’s risk-averse approach to deterrence by replacing the traditional “cost-benefit” decision-calculus with one based on increasing the would-be aggressor’s risks of failure and of suffering severe consequences.


Erich Ludendorff: Failed Strategist or War Visionary? Rereading Ludendorff in Light of the War in Ukraine

Zacarías Hernández

Beyond his role in the First World War, Ludendorff's stature and military thinking have regained attention due to the potential for significant conventional armed conflict. His lasting insights remain relevant because they address the fundamental nature of war.


How France's Lack of a Strategy in West Africa Indirectly Led to the Coups D’états

Jonathan R. Beloff

France’s Opération Barkhane failed largely due to its focus on fighting against a tactic, i.e. terrorism, rather than developing a proper strategy to combat Islamic jihadist actors. It resulted in multiple coup d’états in West African and Sahel nations and the regional introduction of the Wagner Group.


Principles and Pitfalls for the Budding Strategist

Cameron Ross

Strategic thinking is a skill that requires years of practice and application to hone and refine. Junior officers desiring to sharpen their thinking now in preparation for future positions should start by focusing on three enduring principles of military strategy that serve as the core of strategic thinking. However, understanding is not enough; they must also be familiar with the common pitfalls that arise when marrying theory to practice, to prevent stumbles in implementation.


Making Sound Strategy: Back to the Basics of Ends, Ways, and Means

Giles Moon

This article introduces the concept of strategic 'soundness', a simple tool to help assess whether a strategy, prior to being enacted, has the basic components necessary for it to stand even a chance of success.


Rule Guided Behavior and Violence – A Cultural Evolutionary Strategy to Foster Peaceful Cultural Entities

Dr. Rainer Gabriel, Nicolas Stojek, Prof. Dr. Heiner Mühlmann

Scholars of International Relations posit that the future global landscape will be characterized by the dominance of multiple coequal power blocs, anticipating tensions among these blocs. This article endeavors to outline a cybernetic blueprint for a prospective international system structure capable of rendering war effectively unappealing and of fostering peaceful cultural entities.