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Thursday, November 15, 2018

Issue 55

The Structure of World Power
Background Essay
Background Essay

The Structure of the Contemporary International System

by Josef Joffevia Strategika
Thursday, November 15, 2018

A monopoly obtains when one firm is free to set prices and output while keeping ambitious newcomers out of the market. The best example is Standard Oil in the late 19th century. Ruthlessly undercutting competitors, the company ended up controlling 90 percent of refined oil flows in the United States. The United States never had that kind of overweening power in the international “market.” It may have come close to unipolarity in the 1990s when its mortal rival, the Soviet Union, had committed suicide. Yet the contemporary world is no longer unipolar. Neither is it bi- or multipolar.

Featured Commentary
Featured Commentary

Seeking Stability In The Structure of Power

by Seth Cropseyvia Strategika
Thursday, November 15, 2018

The global strategic landscape is moving away from the primacy that America achieved over the last century. New terrain includes the possibility of great power competition, a return to the bipolarity that policy-makers in the immediate post-Cold War said must never happen again. Current sentiment in the U.S. illustrates that there are worse possibilities than bipolarity.

Featured Commentary

The Vagaries Of World Power

by Nadia Schadlow via Strategika
Thursday, November 15, 2018

By traditional measures—military strength, economic wealth, population size—the United States remains the world’s preeminent superpower. Its economy continues to expand; it deploys the largest military in the world; it is home to a growing population; and American laws and capital flows encourage a vibrant ecosystem for innovation.

E.g., 12 / 10 / 2018
E.g., 12 / 10 / 2018
Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Issue 23

Will NATO survive as a credible alliance - and should it?

Background Essay

by Peter R. Mansoor Tuesday, May 12, 2015
article

Featured Commentary

by Josef Joffe Tuesday, May 12, 2015
article
by Ken Jowitt Tuesday, May 12, 2015
article

Related Commentary

by Ralph Peters Tuesday, May 12, 2015
article
by Bing West Wednesday, May 27, 2015
article
Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Issue 22

How will new gas and oil production affect, if at all, America’s military and geostrategic role abroad?

Background Essay

by Williamson Murray Wednesday, March 25, 2015
article

Featured Commentary

by Kori Schake Thursday, March 26, 2015
article
by Walter Russell Mead Thursday, March 26, 2015
article

Related Commentary

by Victor Davis Hanson Monday, March 30, 2015
article
Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Issue 21

What additional future steps should the United States and Europe take, if any at all, to counter Russian ambitions?

Background Essay

by Victor Davis Hanson Thursday, February 26, 2015
article

Featured Commentary

by Paul R. Gregory Wednesday, February 18, 2015
article
by Angelo M. Codevilla Wednesday, February 18, 2015
article

Related Commentary

by Max Boot Wednesday, February 18, 2015
article
by Angelo M. Codevilla Wednesday, February 18, 2015
article
by Frederick W. Kagan Wednesday, February 18, 2015
article
by Peter R. Mansoor Wednesday, February 18, 2015
article
by Williamson Murray Wednesday, February 18, 2015
article
by Ralph Peters Wednesday, February 18, 2015
article
by Barry Strauss Wednesday, February 18, 2015
article
Friday, December 19, 2014

Issue 20

How might the U.S. reboot its Middle East policy and restore confidence in U.S. power and influence?

Background Essay

by Joshua Muravchik Friday, December 19, 2014
article

Featured Commentary

by Kimberly Kagan Friday, December 19, 2014
article
by Dr. Joseph Felter Friday, December 19, 2014
article

Related Commentary

by Thomas Donnelly Friday, December 19, 2014
article
by Walter Russell Mead Friday, December 19, 2014
article
by Kori Schake Friday, December 19, 2014
article
by Barry Strauss Friday, December 19, 2014
article
by Bing West Friday, December 19, 2014
article
by Peter R. Mansoor Tuesday, February 17, 2015
article

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Background Essay

You Say You Want A Revolution?

by Thomas Donnellyvia Strategika
Wednesday, March 15, 2017

To paraphrase the Beatles: Well, you know, you’d better free your mind instead; you may want a revolution but ought to settle for some evolution.

Featured Commentary

It’s Not Just The Technology: Beyond Offset Strategies

by Dr. Joseph Felter via Strategika
Wednesday, March 15, 2017

A range of breakthrough technologies are emerging today that have the potential to radically change how we fight and deter threats across all conflict domains—air, land, sea, space, and cyber. Artificial intelligence, directed energy, robotics, and machine learning are just a few examples. 

Featured Commentary

Moving Forward: The Need For Innovations In Technology And Strategy

by Kiron K. Skinnervia Strategika
Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Two broad sets of U.S. military strategies during the second half of the twentieth century combined ideas, innovation, and technology in ways that offset Soviet conventional (and later nuclear) superiority in arms and military forces. These strategies also contributed to the overall state of cold war, as opposed to hot war, between the two superpowers. Today, the Pentagon is hard at work on a framework to achieve military dominance over a far more diverse set of adversaries. 

Related Commentary

The Key Technological Breakthrough: Avoiding Death

by Bing West via Strategika
Wednesday, March 15, 2017

What technological breakthroughs could recalibrate military operations in the tradition of the tank, guided missile, jet aircraft, or nuclear weapon? It’s not the technologies; rather, it is the motivation driving the technologies that has changed. The American Way of War has reverted back to the pre-1775 style called “skulking”: you try to kill your enemy while staying alive. 

Related Commentary

The Next Revolution in Military Affairs

by Peter R. Mansoorvia Strategika
Wednesday, March 15, 2017

History is replete with examples of revolutions in military affairs, or RMAs, the name for changes in warfare wrought by a combination of technological breakthroughs, organizational adaptations, and doctrinal innovations that lead to new and more effective methods of conducting military operations. 

Related Commentary

Defending the Final Frontier

by Angelo M. Codevillavia Strategika
Wednesday, March 15, 2017

The capacity to protect one’s own military satellite network while destroying the enemy’s—entirely feasible well within a decade—would relegate an enemy’s military operations to pre-modern levels.

Related Commentary

Technological Advances, Diminishing Results

by Max Bootvia Strategika
Wednesday, March 15, 2017

The former secretary of defense, Ash Carter, fervently hoped that technology would transform military operations in the near-future in ways favorable to the United States. He put billions of dollars behind what is called the “third offset strategy.”

Featured Commentary

America Respected Vs. Global Security

by Angelo M. Codevillavia Strategika
Thursday, January 26, 2017

George Kennan wrote that Americans in 1905 had not imagined threats from abroad, but that by 1950 they could hardly think of anything else. In the intervening half century, U.S. foreign policy had adopted the maxim that America’s security is inseparable from the rest of the world’s peace and progress. Accordingly, Woodrow Wilson’s Great War, his settlement thereof, and subsequent American-led treaties for global peace and arms control sought to “make the world safe for democracy.” 

Background Essay

Blast From The Past: The Strategic Realignment Of The United States In The Trump Administration

by Peter R. Mansoorvia Strategika
Thursday, January 26, 2017

As Donald Trump assumes office as the nation’s 45th president, questions swirl regarding the strategic trajectory and alignment of the United States during his administration. Mr. Trump campaigned on a platform of putting “America First,” but the policy details of what exactly this means were, to put it mildly, lacking.

Featured Commentary

Trump’s Strategic Realignments

by Bing West via Strategika
Thursday, January 26, 2017

“Likely,” when considering what strategic realignments the Trump administration will embrace to restore American deterrence and enhance global security, is the least likely adverb to apply to predictions. A Wall Street Journal review of 6,500 market predictions by economic experts found that most were wrong. 

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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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