Modern Military Strategy : An Introduction book cover
2nd Edition

Modern Military Strategy
An Introduction

ISBN 9781138825383
Published October 11, 2016 by Routledge
194 Pages

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Book Description

This textbook provides a comprehensive introduction to post-Cold War military theory for students of strategic studies.

This second edition has been fully revised and updated, including a new chapter on peacekeeping, and examines contemporary strategic thought on the conduct of war in the sea, land, air, nuclear, space and cyber domains, as well as irregular warfare. Each chapter identifies contemporary strategic thinkers in a particular area, examines strategic thought through the lens of identifiable themes, and discusses the ideas of classical strategists to provide historical context. Examples of the link between the use of military force and the pursuit of political objectives are presented, such as airpower against ISIS and in Libya, counterinsurgency in Afghanistan and Iraq, counter-piracy operations off the coast of Africa, and the Stuxnet virus in Iran. The chapters identify trends, statements and principles that indicate how military power can best be employed to effect political ends, while the conclusion paints an overall picture of the relationship between classic and contemporary strategic thinking within each warfare domain.

This book will be essential reading for students of strategic studies, war studies and military history, and is highly recommended for students of security studies and international relations in general.

Table of Contents

Introduction: Strategy and Strategic Thought

PART I: Traditional Dimensions of Strategy

1. Seapower

2. Landpower

3. Airpower

4. Nuclear Power and Deterrence

PART II: Strategy and Non-State Actors

5. Irregular war: Insurgency, Counterinsurgency and New War

6. Peacekeeping and Stabilization

PART III: Technology and Strategy

7. Joint Theory and Military Transformation

8. Cyberwar

9. Spacepower


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Elinor C. Sloan is Professor of International Relations at Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada. Her previous books include Military Transformation and Modern Warfare (2008), Security and Defence in the Terrorist Era (2005), and The Revolution in Military Affairs (2002).


'Elinor C. Sloan provides a remarkably thorough and perceptive survey of contemporary military policy debates in all the major domains of warfare – sea, land, air, and increasingly cyber and space – with careful attention both to warfare between states and to conflicts involving non-state actors. And she grounds all of this in a foundation of classical strategic theory that serves to motivate and set in context the military issues of today. Modern Military Strategy is the rare textbook that is both accessible to the student and a source of insight for the expert. Highly recommended.' -- Stephen Biddle, The George Washington University, USA 

'My studies of military strategy at West Point began with the 1986 edition of Makers of Modern Strategy edited by Peter Paret, and continued at Oxford with the 1943 edition edited by Edward Mead Earle.  Today's aspiring strategists should begin their study with this edition of Modern Military Strategy. Elinor C. Sloan picks up the trail blazed by Earle and Paret and carries it forward through the battlefields of Iraq and Afghanistan, capturing both what is new and what endures in the study of strategic thought.' -- John Nagl, author of Learning to Eat Soup with a Knife: Counterinsurgency Lessons from Malaya and Vietnam


Praise for the first edition:

'Modern Military Strategy draws a clean line between the old strategic masters of yesteryear and those writing on today's challenges. The book is masterful, concise, and illuminating throughout.'-- Martin Libicki, RAND Corporation

'In this book, Elinor C. Sloan provides an authoritative and straightforward guide through the morass of strategic possibilities, written with clarity and insight... It’s not the last word on all these highly varied subjects but it will certainly inspire her readers and help them get to where they need to be.' -- Geoffrey Till, Kings College London, UK     

'Modern Military Strategy is an outstanding study of the major aspects of contemporary warfare and defense preparation. The book is respectful of history while being anchored firmly in current realities, yet manages to be future-leaning persuasively.' -- Colin S. Gray, University of Reading, UK

'In her insightful and informative book, Elinor C. Sloan tackles the important question: Who are today’s leading military strategic thinkers and what do they have to say? The result is a wide-ranging survey of contemporary strategic thinking in its various forms and domains that should find its way to the bookshelves of professional policy-makers and armchair generals alike.’ -- Andrew F. Krepinevich, Jr., Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments, Washington DC

'In this compact volume, Elinor C. Sloan has produced a unique contribution to the literature on post-Cold War military affairs ... I know of no more instructive an introductory read for novitiates in this field, nor of a more balanced and thorough tour d’horizon of the field for its more expert practitioners.'-- Benjamin S. Lambeth, Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments, Washington DC