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Monday, September 14, 2020

Issue 67

U.S. Troop Deployments in Germany
Background Essay
Background Essay

America—A European Power No More? Shifting Tectonics, Changing Interests, And The Shrinking Size Of U.S. Troops In Europe

by Josef Joffevia Strategika
Friday, September 11, 2020

The Trump drawdown of U.S. troops in Europe is not the end of the alliance, but part of a familiar story. America’s military presence has been contested from Week 1—make that February 4–11, 1945. At Yalta, Franklin D. Roosevelt assured Joseph Stalin that the United States would soon depart from Europe. Its troops—three million at the peak—would all be gone in two years.

Featured Commentary
Featured Commentary

Is It Wise To Pull Out And Redeploy 12,000 U.S. Troops From Germany?

by Angelo M. Codevillavia Strategika
Friday, September 11, 2020

President Trump’s decision to return the U.S 2nd Cavalry Regiment currently stationed in Germany to American soil (6,500 troops), as well as to redeploy mostly Air Force units from Germany to Italy and command headquarters to Belgium and Poland (another 5,600), will have mostly modest positive military consequences and has already benefited America diplomatically. The military consequences are modest because U.S forces in Europe have long since ceased to be potential combatants. 

Featured Commentary

Return Of Forces From Germany?

by Peter R. Mansoorvia Strategika
Friday, September 11, 2020

On September 11, 1944, a patrol led by Staff Sergeant Warner L. Holzinger of Troop B, 85th Reconnaissance Squadron, 5th Armored Division, crossed the Our River from Luxembourg into Germany. Those five soldiers were the vanguard of a mighty Allied force that would within eight months conquer the Third Reich, thereby ending World War II in Europe.

E.g., 10 / 20 / 2020
E.g., 10 / 20 / 2020
Monday, November 10, 2014

Issue 19

What is the likely trajectory of Chinese-Japanese tensions and how will the United States be affected?

Background Essay

by Miles Maochun Yu Monday, November 10, 2014
article

Featured Commentary

by Angelo M. Codevilla Monday, November 10, 2014
article
by Mark Moyar Monday, November 10, 2014
article

Related Commentary

by Angelo M. Codevilla Monday, November 10, 2014
article
by Miles Maochun Yu Monday, November 10, 2014
article
Monday, September 1, 2014

Issue 18

Is there a military solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict?

Background Essay

by Andrew Roberts Monday, September 1, 2014
article

Featured Commentary

by Thomas H. Henriksen Monday, September 1, 2014
article
by Kori Schake Monday, September 1, 2014
article

Related Commentary

by Peter Berkowitz Tuesday, September 16, 2014
article
by Peter Berkowitz Wednesday, August 6, 2014
article
by Victor Davis Hanson Thursday, September 11, 2014
article
by Victor Davis Hanson Wednesday, August 20, 2014
article
by Victor Davis Hanson Tuesday, August 5, 2014
article
by Victor Davis Hanson Tuesday, July 29, 2014
article
by Edward N. Luttwak Sunday, July 20, 2014
article
by Bruce Thornton Monday, July 21, 2014
article
by Bruce Thornton Tuesday, April 8, 2014
article
Poster Collection, US 4642, Hoover Institution Archives.
Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Issue 16

What will be the immediate strategic repercussions, if any, of the scheduled radical pruning of the size of the American military?

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Featured Commentary

Afghanistan Options: Leave, Increase, Stand Pat, Or Cut Back?

by Bing Westvia Strategika
Monday, February 26, 2018

After 17 years on a treadmill, obviously no good option exists. But to pull out our troops would be to repeat Saigon in 1975. The consequences to America’s credibility would be crushing. Unlike in the Vietnam case, no domestic political movement is dedicated to insuring a total, humiliating withdrawal. Conversely, no American power center, bureaucratic or political, is lobbying to increase our force numbers.

Background Essay

Americanism In Afghanistan? A Flawed Design

by Hy Rothstein, John Arquillavia Strategika
Monday, February 26, 2018

Since the war in Afghanistan began in late 2001, three successive presidential administrations have claimed that the Taliban are on the verge of collapse, the Afghan military is close to securing the country, and Afghan leaders in Kabul are just one step away from providing legitimate governance. 

Related Commentary

U.S. Aid to Afghanistan Remains Critical

by Mark Moyarvia Strategika
Monday, February 26, 2018

Abandonment of Afghanistan at this time would be highly inadvisable because of the inordinate risks of abetting Islamic extremism and generating higher outflows of narcotics and people. The strategy of 2013-2017, in which small numbers of American troops advised Afghan forces and conducted raids, prevented the Kabul government from falling, but it failed to prevent insurgents from retaking much of the country. Military setbacks heightened infighting among Afghan elites and impeded the development of a viable national government.

Related Commentary

Afghanistan: No Choice but to Remain

by Thomas Donnellyvia Strategika
Monday, February 26, 2018

Quite unlike Great Britain or the Soviet Union, the United States has never had a coherent strategy for its engagement in Afghanistan. No amount of military operational acumen or diplomatic experience can make up for that deficiency; it hardly matters what we do if we have no idea why we’re doing it.

Related Commentary

Our Long Last Stand in Afghanistan

by Ralph Petersvia Strategika
Monday, February 26, 2018

Approved by the president in August, we have a “new” plan in Afghanistan. It will increase the U.S. troop strength to approximately 14,000 service members. Those 14,000 troops will be expected to achieve what 140,000 U.S. and allied troops could not achieve when the Taliban was weaker, al-Qaeda lay broken, and ISIS did not exist.

Featured Commentary

Cornstalks, Calvinball, And The Bridges At Toko Ri: Rightsizing The U.S. Navy

by Admiral James O. Ellis Jr.via Strategika
Tuesday, January 16, 2018

The main street of Washington, Georgia, is called Toombs Avenue in honor of the Georgia senator and Civil War general who was born nearby. In promoting the South’s secession as the war approached, Toombs reportedly claimed, “We can beat those Yankees with cornstalks!”

Background Essay

The Sinews Of Empire

by Seth Cropseyvia Strategika
Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Modern scholars of politics revel in their complex descriptions of state action. Rather than oversimplifying and reducing the state to a unitary body, they separate its internal components and assess each of their relative strengths. There’s something to this.

Related Commentary

The Status of U.S. Navy Readiness: Too Small, Too Old, and Too Tired

by Thomas Donnellyvia Strategika
Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Seventeen sailors have been killed this year in accidents involving two destroyers, the USS John S. McCain and USS Fitzgerald.

Featured Commentary

A Stretched Navy And A Fiscal Disconnect

by Admiral Gary Rougheadvia Strategika
Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Last year, within two weeks’ time, two deadly collisions of U.S. Navy ships in western Pacific sea-lanes brought home the reality of a Navy in increasing demand yet stretched precariously thin. The captains and those responsible on watch those nights, as they operated in congested Asian waters, were held to account, but it remains the nation that has allowed and accepted the conditions that led to those tragic events and the loss of 17 sailors.

Featured Commentary

Reasonable Conventional Options In A Second Korean War

by Miles Maochun Yuvia Strategika
Wednesday, November 15, 2017

While the world is abuzz about North Korea’s nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles, it is Pyongyang’s conventional capabilities that are not given sufficient attention. As mentions of a general war with North Korea are hardly absent on a daily basis, this indolence on seriously dealing with Kim’s conventional forces is alarmingly dangerous, because, despite the global focus on Kim’s nascent nuclear weapons and missile programs, the actual fighting will remain overwhelmingly conventional, primarily because Kim knows that his strength lies preponderantly in his conventional capabilities, not nuclear or thermonuclear ones.

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The Working Group on the Role of Military History in Contemporary Conflict strives to reaffirm the Hoover Institution's dedication to historical research in light of contemporary challenges, and in particular, reinvigorating the national study of military history as an asset to foster and enhance our national security. Read more.

Is there a military solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict?

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Strategika is an online journal that analyzes ongoing issues of national security in light of conflicts of the past—the efforts of the Military History Working Group of historians, analysts, and military personnel focusing on military history and contemporary conflict.

Our board of scholars shares no ideological consensus other than a general acknowledgment that human nature is largely unchanging. Consequently, the study of past wars can offer us tragic guidance about present conflicts—a preferable approach to the more popular therapeutic assumption that contemporary efforts to ensure the perfectibility of mankind eventually will lead to eternal peace. New technologies, methodologies, and protocols come and go; the larger tactical and strategic assumptions that guide them remain mostly the same—a fact discernable only through the study of history.

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The opinions expressed in Strategika are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Hoover Institution or Stanford University.