Military Power: Explaining Victory and Defeat in Modern Battle

Military Power: Explaining Victory and Defeat in Modern Battle

by Stephen Biddle
     
 

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ISBN-10: 0691128022

ISBN-13: 9780691128023

Pub. Date: 07/03/2006

Publisher: Princeton University Press

In war, do mass and materiel matter most? Will states with the largest, best equipped, information-technology-rich militaries invariably win? The prevailing answer today among both scholars and policymakers is yes. But this is to overlook force employment, or the doctrine and tactics by which materiel is actually used. In a landmark reconception of battle and war,

Overview

In war, do mass and materiel matter most? Will states with the largest, best equipped, information-technology-rich militaries invariably win? The prevailing answer today among both scholars and policymakers is yes. But this is to overlook force employment, or the doctrine and tactics by which materiel is actually used. In a landmark reconception of battle and war, this book provides a systematic account of how force employment interacts with materiel to produce real combat outcomes. Stephen Biddle argues that force employment is central to modern war, becoming increasingly important since 1900 as the key to surviving ever more lethal weaponry. Technological change produces opposite effects depending on how forces are employed; to focus only on materiel is thus to risk major error—with serious consequences for both policy and scholarship.

In clear, fluent prose, Biddle provides a systematic account of force employment's role and shows how this account holds up under rigorous, multimethod testing. The results challenge a wide variety of standard views, from current expectations for a revolution in military affairs to mainstream scholarship in international relations and orthodox interpretations of modern military history.

Military Power will have a resounding impact on both scholarship in the field and on policy debates over the future of warfare, the size of the military, and the makeup of the defense budget.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780691128023
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
Publication date:
07/03/2006
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
352
Sales rank:
360,354
Product dimensions:
6.10(w) x 9.10(h) x 0.90(d)

Related Subjects

Table of Contents

Preface ix
Abbreviations xiii
CHAPTER ONE
Introduction 1
CHAPTER TWO
A Literature Built on Weak Foundations 14
CHAPTER THREE
The Modern System 28
CHAPTER FOUR
The Modern System, Preponderance, and Changing Technology 52
CHAPTER FIVE
Operation MICHAEL-The Second Battle of the Somme, March 21-April 9, 1918 78
CHAPTER SIX
Operation GOODWOOD-July 18-20, 1944 108
CHAPTER SEVEN
Operation DESERT STORM-January 17-February 28, 1991 132
CHAPTER EIGHT
Statistical Tests 150
CHAPTER NINE
Experimental Tests 181
CHAPTER TEN
Conclusion 190
APPENDIX
A Formal Model of Capability 209
Notes 240
Index 325

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