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"War no longer exists," writes General Sir Rupert Smith, powerfully reminding us that the clash of mass national armiesthe system of war since Napoleonwill never occur again. Instead, he argues in this timely book, we must be prepared to adapt tactics to each conflict, or lose the ability to protect ourselves and our way of life. General Smith draws on his vast experience as a commander in the 1991 Gulf War, in Bosnia, Kosovo and Northern Ireland, to give us a probing analysis of modern war and to call for radically new military thinking. Why, he asks, do we use armed force to solve our political problems? And how is it that our armies can win battles but fail to solve the problems? From Iraq to the Balkans, and from Afghanistan to Chechnya, Smith charts a stream of armed interventions that have failed to deliver on promises of resolution. He demonstrates why today's conflicts must be understood as intertwined political and military events. He makes clear why the current one-size-fits-all model of total war, fought out on battlefields, that politicians still cling to must be abandoned in favor of new strategies that take into account the fact that wars are now fought among civilian populations. And he offers a compelling new model for how to fight these battlesand secure our world. Clear, incisive and provocative, The Utility of Force will fundamentally change the way we understand war.
From a highly decorated general, a brilliant new way of understanding war and its role in the twenty-first century. Drawing on his vast experience as a commander during the first Gulf War, and in Bosnia, Kosovo, and Northern Ireland, General Rupert Smith gives us a probing analysis of modern war. He demonstrates why today's conflicts must be understood as intertwined political and military events, and makes clear why the current model of total war has failed in Iraq, Afghanistan, and other recent campaigns. Smith offers a compelling contemporary vision for how to secure our world and the consequences of ignoring the new, shifting face of war.
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Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
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Table Of Content
Preface Introduction: Understanding Force PART ONE:INTERSTATE INDUSTRIAL WAR 1. Foundation: From Napoleon to Clausewitz 2. Development: Iron, Steam and Mass 3. Culmination: The World Wars PART TWO: THE COLD WAR CONFRONTATION 4. Antithesis: From Guerrillas to Anarchists to Mao 5. Confrontation and Conflict: A New Purpose for the Use of Force 6. Capabilities: The Search for a New Way PART THREE: WAR AMONGST THE PEOPLE 7. Trends: Our Modern Operations 8. Direction: Setting the Purpose for the Use of Force 9. Bosnia: Using Force Amongst the People Conclusion: What Is to Be Done? Index
"Smith has written one of the most important books on modern warfare in the last decade. We would be better off if the United States had a few more generals like him." --Eliot A. Cohen, "The Washington Post Book World " "An impressive and absorbing work of military analysis . . . If, in the end, he does not quite solve the riddle of how to win the small wars of our time, he brilliantly lays bare the newfound limits of Western military power. The more Iraq looks like Bosnia on the Tigris . . . the more prescient his book will seem." --Niall Ferguson, "The New York Times Book Review " "Rupert Smith's The Utility of Force remains the seminal work on this subject. While others have added invaluable data . . . they fail to understand as Smith does that we live in a new era." --Stephen Graubard, "Financial Times "
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