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Friday, December 27, 2019

Issue 62

Is the Mediterranean Still Geo-strategically Essential?
Background Essay
Background Essay

Is The Mediterranean Still Geo-Strategically Essential?

by Barry Strauss via Strategika
Friday, December 27, 2019

The Mediterranean Sea is today, as it has always been, a crossroads. The name itself testifies to that, as it means “the sea in the middle of the earth,” a Latin term reflecting an earlier Greek belief. We know better, or do we? From Syria to Libya and on the high seas, and with outside players including China, Iran, Russia, and the United States, the Mediterranean has re-emerged of late as a cockpit of conflict. 

Featured Commentary
Featured Commentary

The Wrong Side Of The Pillars Of Hercules: The Mediterranean Just Doesn’t Matter Much Anymore

by Ralph Petersvia Strategika
Friday, December 27, 2019

The United States is an Atlantic and Pacific power by virtue of geography, strategic necessity, and economic opportunity. A forward defense of the far littorals—Europe and the East-Asian barrier states facing China—is the essential requirement for our security. All else is not only secondary or tertiary, but often an ill-advised and grossly costly drain on our resources.

Featured Commentary

Europe’s Mediterranean Frontier

by Angelo M. Codevillavia Strategika
Friday, December 27, 2019

The Mediterranean abruptly separates Europe’s civilization from those of Africa and the Middle East. On one side, reaching North to Scandinavia and East to the Bering Strait, some seven hundred million mostly prosperous people live according to principles derived from Judeo-Christianity, Greek philosophy, and Roman law. Their number is shrinking. 

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Strategika: “Arms Control, Ancient and Modern” With Barry Strauss

interview with Barry Strauss via Strategika
Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Chronicling the history of efforts to restrain violence.

Strategika: “Why Arms Control Agreements Are Superfluous,” With Angelo Codevilla

interview with Angelo M. Codevillavia Strategika
Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Why diplomacy can’t alter underlying realities.

Strategika: “Can The United States Restrain Iran?” With Walter Russell Mead

interview with Walter Russell Mead via Strategika
Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Is the Iranian nuclear deal destined to fail?

Featured Commentary

Lessons Of Past Arms Control Agreements For The Proposed Iran Deal

by Barry Strauss via Strategika
Tuesday, August 25, 2015

The history of arms control agreements is the history of violations. States sign agreements when they must, but break them when they wish. Secret violations are especially hard to monitor in dictatorships and closed societies.

Featured Commentary

The Checkered History Of Arms Control

by Walter Russell Mead via Strategika
Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Arms control agreements have become an accepted part of the diplomat’s toolkit. They’re taught in seminars at places like Johns Hopkins’ SAIS and Harvard’s Kennedy School; they’re name-checked alongside peace treaties and trade agreements as things diplomats do; negotiating and monitoring them is even a career track.

Background Essay

The Flaws Of Arms Control

by Angelo M. Codevillavia Strategika
Tuesday, August 25, 2015

The U.S.-Iran “agreement” of 2015—its genesis, the negotiations that led to it, and its likely consequences—is comprehensible only in terms of a set of ideas peculiar to the post-WWI era, which distinguishes it from previous historical examples.

Poster Collection, US 06780, Hoover Institution Archives.

Strategika: “Cultural Decline and the Military” with Andrew Roberts

interview with Andrew Robertsvia Strategika
Friday, August 14, 2015

How political correctness is weakening the armed forces.

Poster Collection, US 06628, Hoover Institution Archives.

Strategika: “How the Military Has Resisted Political Correctness,” with Thomas Donnelly

interview with Thomas Donnellyvia Strategika
Friday, August 14, 2015

Why PC culture has failed to penetrate the armed services.

Related Commentary

Obama’s Intentionally Divisive Iran Nuclear Deal Rhetoric

by Max Bootvia Commentary
Monday, August 10, 2015

Last week Senator Chuck Schumer, the presumptive next leader of the Democrats in the Senate, announced that he was going to vote against the Iran nuclear deal.

Related Commentary

Conflicting Identities In the U.S. Armed Forces

by Angelo M. Codevillavia Strategika
Monday, July 27, 2015

My time on Navy active duty being long past, my insights into how the social changes imposed on the armed forces impact their capacity for combat flow from my acquaintance with former students who are now serving

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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.

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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.