Strategy: The Logic of War and Peace

Overview

If you want peace, prepare for war. A buildup of offensive weapons can be purely defensive. The worst road may be the best route to battle.

Strategy is made of such seemingly self-contradictory propositions, Edward Luttwak shows--they exemplify the paradoxical logic that pervades the entire realm of conflict.

In this widely acclaimed work, now revised and expanded, Luttwak unveils the peculiar logic of strategy level by level, from grand ...

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Overview

If you want peace, prepare for war. A buildup of offensive weapons can be purely defensive. The worst road may be the best route to battle.

Strategy is made of such seemingly self-contradictory propositions, Edward Luttwak shows--they exemplify the paradoxical logic that pervades the entire realm of conflict.

In this widely acclaimed work, now revised and expanded, Luttwak unveils the peculiar logic of strategy level by level, from grand strategy down to combat tactics. Having participated in its planning, Luttwak examines the role of air power in the 1991 Gulf War, then detects the emergence of "post-heroic" war in Kosovo in 1999--an American war in which not a single American soldier was killed.

In the tradition of Carl von Clausewitz, Strategy goes beyond paradox to expose the dynamics of reversal at work in the crucible of conflict. As victory is turned into defeat by over-extension, as war brings peace by exhaustion, ordinary linear logic is overthrown. Citing examples from ancient Rome to our own days, from Barbarossa and Pearl Harbor down to minor combat affrays, from the strategy of peace to the latest operational methods of war, this book by one of the world's foremost authorities reveals the ultimate logic of military failure and success, of war and peace.

Luttwak's become the unthinkable. And here he has succeeded magnificently. For peacemakers and warmakers alike." -- Harry G. Summers, Jr., New York Times Book Review.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780674839960
  • Publisher: Harvard University Press
  • Publication date: 2/28/1990
  • Edition description: Older Edition
  • Pages: 283
  • Product dimensions: 6.15 (w) x 9.26 (h) x 0.78 (d)

Meet the Author

Edward N. Luttwak is a Senior Associate at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.
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Table of Contents

Preface
Pt. I The Logic of Strategy 1
1 The Conscious Use of Paradox in War 3
2 The Logic in Action 16
3 Efficiency and the Culminating Point of Success 32
4 The Coming Together of Opposites 50
Pt. II The Levels of Strategy 87
5 The Technical Level 93
6 The Tactical Level 103
7 The Operational Level 112
8 Theater Strategy I: Military Options and Political Choices 138
9 Theater Strategy II: Offense and Defense 147
10 Theater Strategy III: Interdiction and the Surprise Attack 158
11 Nonstrategies: Naval, Air, Nuclear 168
12 The Renaissance of Strategic Air Power 185
Pt. III Outcomes: Grand Strategy 207
13 The Scope of Grand Strategy 209
14 Armed Suasion 218
15 Harmony and Disharmony in War 234
16 Can Strategy Be Useful? 258
App. A Definitions of Strategy 267
App. B The Gulf War Air Campaign 271
App. C Instant Thunder 279
Notes 281
Works Cited 299
Index 304
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