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Limp U.S. Involvement Tightens ISIS’s Grip

by Mark Moyarvia Military History in the News
Monday, December 14, 2015

Confronted by accusations that America’s ISIS strategy remains too tepid, the Obama administration is firing back with the argument that larger U.S. military commitments on the ground will actually play into the enemy’s hands.

A Gesture, Not The Answer: Some Flaws In The President’s Strategy To Defeat ISIS

by Mark Moyarvia Military History in the News
Tuesday, December 8, 2015

The linking of the San Bernardino massacre to ISIS has once again heightened the pressure on the Obama administration to alter its ISIS strategy.

Poster Collection, US 7445 Hoover Institution Archives.

When The Cards Are Stacked Against You

by Angelo M. Codevillavia Military History in the News
Tuesday, November 24, 2015

On November 5, 1862, President Abraham Lincoln replaced General George McClellan with the bellicose General Ambrose Burnside as the head of the Army of the Potomac.

Poster Collection, IT 295, Hoover Institution Archives.

A Lesson From An Empire In Decline On How Not To Manage Alien Populations

by Angelo M. Codevillavia Military History in the News
Thursday, November 19, 2015

In November of AD 386, the Roman Army of the lower Danube tricked a horde of Ostrogoths into an attempt to cross the frozen river with some 3,000 canoes.

A Brutal Example From Roman History On How To Defeat ISIS

by Angelo M. Codevillavia Military History in the News
Wednesday, November 11, 2015

At the end of the fighting season of 211 B.C., quite possibly in November, Rome had defeated Hannibal’s fundamental political strategy, although no Roman army had yet defeated Hannibal in the open field.

Poster Collection, US 4103, Hoover Institution Archives.

U.S. And Russian Airpower In The Desert

by Angelo M. Codevillavia Military History in the News
Wednesday, November 4, 2015

On November 1, 1911, Italian Second Lieutenant Guilio Gavotti, flying an Etrich Taube water-cooled monoplane took a 1.5 kilo bomb from his lap and dropped it onto the Ottoman-held Ain Zara oasis south of Tripoli.

Technology And War: The Revolution That Never Arrived

by Williamson Murrayvia Military History in the News
Friday, October 30, 2015

In the 1990s, as a result of the overwhelming victory that U.S. military forces and those of their allies achieved over Saddam’s army in the war over Kuwait, a number of military pundits argued that a revolution in military affairs had occurred.

The Ignorance Of Intelligence Agencies

by Williamson Murrayvia Military History in the News
Tuesday, October 27, 2015

At the start of the Second World War, Great Britain’s intelligence agencies were anything but impressive. Their analytic capabilities overestimated the Third Reich’s military potential through 1938. And then in 1939, they changed views and failed to see that the Germans were actually making effective preparations to that would enable them to wreck the European balance of power.

History As Farce: From Napoleon To Maliki

by Williamson Murrayvia Military History in the News
Wednesday, October 21, 2015

In describing France’s descent from the great Napoleon Bonaparte to his nephew, who had overthrown the Second Republic and replaced it with a totted up empire, Karl Marx commented that history repeats itself, “the first time as tragedy, the second time as farce.”In describing France’s descent from the great Napoleon Bonaparte to his nephew, who had overthrown the Second Republic and replaced it with a totted up empire, Karl Marx commented that history repeats itself...

Past And Present Come Together

by Williamson Murrayvia Military History in the News
Friday, October 16, 2015

Mark Twain is said to have remarked that “history doesn’t repeat itself but it does rhyme.” Perhaps its most consistent rhyme is the failure of politicians and statesmen to recognize real, palpable dangers despite obvious indications that there are states in the external world that have every intention of inflicting harm.

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Wars, terrorism, and revolution are the daily fare of our globalized world, interconnected by instantaneous electronic news.

Military History in the News is a weekly column from the Hoover Institution that reflects on how the study of the past alone allows us to make sense of the often baffling daily violence, not by offering exact parallels from history, but rather by providing contexts of similarity and difference that foster perspective and insight—and reassurance that nothing is ever quite new.