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Recent Publications


  • Publication cover with title

    Added November 05, 2018

    Creating Great Expectations: Strategic Communications and American Airpower

    Authored by Dr. Conrad C. Crane.
    View the Executive Summary

    Americans have always been uniquely attracted to airpower, a fact that has been successfully exploited by generations of U.S. Air Force leaders in information campaigns. But as a result, the nation has often entered conflicts with exorbitant expectations about what airpower could actually accomplish, creating unique challenges in strategic communications when promises did not match reality, especially in recent conflicts. Adaptive enemies have also become very adept at using their own carefully crafted information campaigns to counter what is America’s greatest asymmetric advantage on the battlefield.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added October 23, 2018

    Silent Partners: Organized Crime, Irregular Groups, and Nation-States

    Authored by Dr. Shima D. Keene.
    View the Executive Summary

    This monograph provides an assessment of the threat posed by the partnership between criminal organizations, irregular groups, and nation-states to U.S. national security interests, and recommends ways in which it can be countered by the U.S. Army.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added October 18, 2018

    Assessing the Collective Security Treaty Organization: Capabilities and Vulnerabilities

    Authored by Dr. Richard Weitz.
    View the Executive Summary

    The Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) has become the most important multilateral defense structure in the former Soviet Union and is an essential instrument in Russia’s resurgence. CSTO has expanded its missions, authorities, and capabilities. However, it faces both internal and external challenges, especially debilitating divisions among its members.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added October 03, 2018

    Maintaining Information Dominance in Complex Environments

    Authored by Dr. John A. S. Ardis, Dr. Shima D. Keene.
    View the Executive Summary

    The monograph suggests a risk-based approach to developing an advanced information warfare capability for the U.S. Army. It also proposes that complexity and uncertainty in the information environment be exploited rather than considered a barrier. The authors recommend the development of a series of operational architectures and categories, which abandon the conventional single-outcome strategies of current military deception and embrace complex engagements in a connected and dynamic battlespace.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added September 27, 2018

    The Relevance of the European Union and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization for the United States in the 21st Century

    Authored by Dr. Joel R. Hillison.
    View the Executive Summary

    The “America First” approach to foreign policy seems to call into question the value of institutions like the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the European Union (EU). However, in a more competitive and uncertain strategic environment, NATO and the EU remain vital to promoting U.S. interests.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added September 25, 2018

    Exit Strategy: Rule of Law and the U.S. Army

    Authored by Dr. Shima D. Keene.
    View the Executive Summary

    This monograph highlights the importance of establishing effective and sustainable rule of law institutions and practices in post-conflict states, and describes how the U.S. Army could better achieve that goal as part of its strategy for withdrawal from conflict.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added September 24, 2018

    A Security Role for the United States in a Post-ISIS Syria?

    Authored by Mr. Gregory Aftandilian.
    Syria has become one of the most vexing and complex problems for U.S. strategic planners in recent times. Currently, the United States has about 2,000 troops in the northeastern part of the country whose primary mission has been to aid the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), made up primarily of Kurds and some Arab tribesmen, to fight ISIS. The near total defeat of ISIS in Syria, especially with the fall of its so-called caliphate capital in Raqqa in October 2017, might seem to suggest that the military mission is coming to an end and, therefore, the United States should pull out its troops. Indeed, President Donald Trump stated publicly in late March 2018, that he wanted these troops to come home “very soon.” However, since that time, the U.S. President has backtracked from this statement after receiving advice from several of his top military advisers, including Defense Secretary James Mattis, some foreign leaders like French President Emanuel Macron and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and influential members of Congress, such as Senator Lindsey Graham, all of whom have recommended that the President keep these troops in Syria.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added September 20, 2018

    The Dual-System Problem in Complex Conflicts

    Authored by Dr. Robert D. Lamb, Ms. Melissa R. Gregg.
    View the Executive Summary

    Conflict and fragile environments are increasingly complex and unpredictable, but the U.S. policy system itself is much more complex and unpredictable than most leaders appreciate. In this monograph, the authors argue that until we get a grasp on this “dual-system problem,” the United States will fall further and further behind in its strategic ambitions.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added September 05, 2018

    Impacts of Anti-Access/Area Denial Measures on Space Systems: Issues and Implications for Army and Joint Forces

    Authored by Mr. Jeffrey L. Caton.
    View the Executive Summary

    The 2018 National Defense Strategy and National Space Strategy both reaffirm the vital interests that the United States has in the domain of space. However, space remains an inherently hostile environment that has become congested, contested, and competitive among the nations. What are ways for the U.S. Army to assure the success of its space-dependent warfighting functions in an anti-access/area denial (A2/AD) environment where space systems are degraded for significant periods of time?

  • Publication cover with title

    Added August 22, 2018

    Underestimated: Our Not So Peaceful Nuclear Future, Second Edition

    Authored by Mr. Henry D. Sokolski.
    View the Executive Summary

    Underestimated: Our Not So Peaceful Nuclear Future, Second Edition explores what nuclear future we may face over the next 3 decades and how we currently think about this future. Will nuclear weapons spread in the next 20 years to more nations than just North Korea and possibly Iran? How dire will the consequences be? What might help us avoid the worst?

  • Publication cover with title

    Added August 20, 2018

    2018-20 Key Strategic Issues List

    Edited by LTC Charles A. Carlton.
    For over a decade, the USAWC has published the Key Strategic Issues List (KSIL) to inform students, faculty, and external research associates of strategic topics requiring research and analysis. A subset of these topics, designated as Chief of Staff of the Army special interest topics, consists of those which demand special attention. The USAWC will address these as Integrated Research Projects and other research efforts. The USAWC in coordination with Headquarters Department of the Army (HQDA), major commands throughout the Army, and the joint and interagency community have developed the remaining Army Priorities for Strategic Analysis. The KSIL will help prioritize strategic research and analysis that USAWC students and faculty, USAWC Fellows, and external researchers conduct to link their research efforts and results more effectively to the Army's highest priority topics.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added August 08, 2018

    Radical Islamist English-Language Online Magazines: Research Guide, Strategic Insights, and Policy Response

    Authored by Dr. Robert J. Bunker, Pamela Ligouri Bunker.
    View the Executive Summary

    This Strategic Studies Institute book provides a comprehensive research guide to radical Islamist English-language online magazines, eBooks, and assorted radical Islamist news magazines, reports, and pocketbooks published between April-May 2007 and November 2016, and generates strategic insights and policy response options.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added July 27, 2018

    Current Russia Military Affairs: Assessing and Countering Russian Strategy, Operational Planning, and Modernization

    Edited by Dr. John R. Deni.
    What are the key strategic objectives, operational planning tenets, and force modernization goals of the Russian Federation? This collection of short essays includes the key insights and recommendations presented by featured speakers during a one-day, invite-only workshop conducted in Washington, DC on May 1, 2018 in support of U.S. European Command.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added July 26, 2018

    New Directions in Just-War Theory

    Authored by Dr. J. Toby Reiner.
    View the Executive Summary

    One of the major developments in international law since World War II is the growth of human rights law dedicated to ensuring the protection of individuals from violence wherever they are, including from their own state. Tracking such changes, in recent decades, just-war theory has evolved from its traditional focus on state sovereignty in the direction of a rights-based approach that treats just wars as a form of global law enforcement. This monograph provides a survey of these developments, focusing on the increased scope for humanitarian intervention, principles of justice after war, and on the question of the responsibility of combatants for assessing the justice of their military's cause. It concludes by considering the call for strengthening international institutions and training programs in military ethics.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added May 23, 2018

    Friendly Force Dilemmas in Europe: Challenges Within and Among Intergovernmental Organizations and the Implications for the U.S. Army

    Authored by Colonel Jose Luis Calvo Albero, Colonel Kirk Gallinger, Lieutenant Colonel Klaus Klingenschmid, Lieutenant Colonel Jose De Meer Madrid, Colonel Angus McAfee, Colonel Stefano Messina, Lieutenant Colonel Markus Meyer, Colonel Michael Mineni, Colonel Darryl Rupp.
    View the Executive Summary

    The transatlantic community is facing a vast array of security challenges in Europe. The principal intergovernmental organizations—the European Union (EU) and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO)—responsible for rising to these challenges face a number of hurdles. This monograph takes a unique perspective—that of European partners and allies—in suggesting to U.S. policymakers how Washington ought to consider adjusting its approach in Europe and beyond, as a means of helping NATO and the EU to provide credible and sustainable collective security and defense.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added May 22, 2018

    Robotics and Military Operations

    Edited by Prof. William G. Braun, III, Dr. Stéfanie von Hlatky, Dr. Kim Richard Nossal.
    View the Executive Summary

    This monograph examines the current state of robotics technology, the trajectory for future robotics and autonomous systems use, and the ethical implications of military robotics in the context national security. This monograph offers policy recommendations, explains investment strategy drivers, and examines the ethical implications of robotics and autonomous systems on the modern battlefield.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added March 27, 2018

    The Land, Space, and Cyberspace Nexus: Evolution of the Oldest Military Operations in the Newest Military Domains

    Authored by Mr. Jeffrey L. Caton.
    View the Executive Summary

    By their very nature, military doctrine and operations are works in progress. How are U.S. military operations in the newest domains of space and cyberspace being integrated with operations in the traditional domain of land? Do joint forces in these three domains have existing means available to facilitate cross-domain synergy?

  • Publication cover with title

    Added February 16, 2018

    USAWC Research Plan AY 2018

    Edited by COL Todd E. Key, LTC Charles A. Carlton.
    The USAWC Research Plan is one part of a research program cycle that incorporates three interrelated documents: the KSIL, the USAWC Annual Research Plan and the USAWC Annual Research Report. While the KSIL drives USAWC research, the Research Plan describes how directed resources will answer many of the questions posed in the KSIL. The Research Report serves as a compendium of research completed and a means to identify unanswered questions from the current KSIL, to assist in the next cycle’s KSIL formulation.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added February 06, 2018

    Avoiding the Trap: U.S. Strategy and Policy for Competing in the Asia-Pacific Beyond the Rebalance

    Edited by Dr. David Lai, Professor John F. Troxell, Mr. Frederick J. Gellert.
    View the Executive Summary

    The Trump administration has recently called for a free and open Indo-Pacific, essentially replacing the Obama-era “Rebalance.” This U.S. Army War College report provides prescient analysis and policy recommendations on how to proceed down the path while simultaneously managing the rise of China.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added December 15, 2017

    Still Soldiers and Scholars? An Analysis of Army Officer Testing

    Authored by Dr. Arthur T. Coumbe, Steven J. Condly, Lieutenant Colonel William L. Skimmyhorn.
    View the Executive Summary

    Still Soldiers and Scholars? provides important evidence and advice for the Army as it seeks to sustain and improve the performance of its officer corps. This book adeptly reviews the key developments, assumptions, and forces that have guided and shaped Army officer testing over the years. It then provides thoughtful and practical recommendations regarding how the Army might ensure a more solid intellectual base on which to build its officer corps.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added November 14, 2017

    Armed Robotic Systems Emergence: Weapons Systems Life Cycles Analysis and New Strategic Realities

    Authored by Dr. Robert J. Bunker.
    View the Executive Summary

    This monograph analyzes the historical weapons systems life cycles of the early 9th through the mid-16th-century knight, the mid-19th through the later 20th-century battleship, and the early 20th through the early 21st-century tank. Next, it applies the knowledge gained to provide strategic context and governmental guidance concerning the emergence of armed robotic systems—drones and droids—on the modern battlefield.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added November 02, 2017

    Evaluation of the 2015 DoD Cyber Strategy: Mild Progress in a Complex and Dynamic Military Domain

    Authored by Mr. Jeffrey L. Caton.
    View the Executive Summary

    In April 2015, the Department of Defense (DoD) released its second official strategy for cyberspace. How does the new strategy compare to the 2011 Strategy for Operating in Cyberspace? Does it provide an appropriate and actionable path forward for military operations in the rapidly evolving cyberspace domain?

  • Publication cover with title

    Added November 01, 2017

    Terrorist Sanctuary in the Sahara: A Case Study

    Authored by Lieutenant Colonel Joseph Guido.
    View the Executive Summary

    Nuclear weapons, great state competition, and belligerence have refocused American strategy to view military operations in undeveloped and largely ungoverned areas, such as Africa, as economy of force efforts. Lieutenant Colonel Joseph Guido suggests what such economy of force efforts to control terrorist sanctuary would look like, and the key considerations to achieve success against these terrorist groups in his detailed study of one of the most notorious al-Qaeda leaders of all time who finds refuge in the middle of the world’s largest desert—perhaps the greatest sanctuary of all.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added October 26, 2017

    Closer Than You Think: The Implications of the Third Offset Strategy for the U.S. Army

    Edited by Samuel R. White, Jr..
    View the Executive Summary

    The implications of the Third Offset for the Army should not be dismissed. These technologies have the potential to change the character of conflict and they require deliberateness. They are coming, and in many cases are already here—it is inevitable. How the Army approaches the Third Offset over the upcoming few years will set the stage for the next 30 years.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added October 10, 2017

    A Typology of Arguments about Drone Ethics

    Authored by Dr. Mary Manjikian.
    View the Executive Summary

    Many different actors oppose the use of unmanned autonomous weapons (UAV’s) from adversary states, to international governmental organizations to policymakers and academics. However, the basis for their opposition varies, as do the assumptions behind their arguments. This Letort Paper lays out distinctions between arguments about technology, arguments about policy, and arguments about strategy.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added September 28, 2017

    Toward a NATO of the Gulf? The Challenges of Collective Defense Within the GCC

    Authored by Dr. Jean-Loup Samaan.
    View the Executive Summary

    Although collective security in the Gulf is the topic of numerous policy publications, most of the available literature focuses on the political environment without considering the operational requirements of this scenario. This monograph offers an evaluation of Gulf defense cooperation programs in order to stir the discussion on the future of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) as the “NATO of the Gulf.”

  • Publication cover with title

    Added September 14, 2017

    Strategic Landscape, 2050: Preparing the U.S. Military for New Era Dynamics

    Authored by Mr. Roman Muzalevsky.
    View the Executive Summary

    A series of megatrends will present a major challenge to the United States in the coming decades, exposing it to crises and opportunities on the battlefield and in the market. The U.S. military should stand ready to harness these dynamics to retain its edge in an operational environment marked by increased complexity, speed, and intensity of global developments.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added September 11, 2017

    The Clash of the Trinities: A New Theoretical Analysis of the General Nature of War

    Authored by Major Daniel Maurer.
    View the Executive Summary

    This monograph reimagines war’s fundamental nature, extending Clausewitz’s theory of its political origin and “trinitarian” elements in a way that embraces alternative, sociological explanations like that of John Keegan. Ultimately, it proposes a new way to visualize the complexities of war’s intrinsic elements, operating at any scale, and expresses war with a completely new and universal definition.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added August 29, 2017

    Building Partner Capacity in Africa: Keys to Success

    Edited by Dr. Frank L. Jones.
    View the Executive Summary

    This book examines the implications for building partner capacity in Africa based on reform initiatives in the fiscal year (FY) 2017 National Defense Authorization Act. The legislation enacts sweeping changes to how the Defense Department (DoD), including the Army, conducts security cooperation activities. The study assesses this legislation’s impact on U.S. defense interests in Africa and recommends ways for the DoD to address these reform initiatives for the region, and in some cases, serve as a model for other regions.

  • Publication cover with title

    Added August 25, 2017

    Rotational Deployments vs. Forward Stationing: How Can the Army Achieve Assurance and Deterrence Efficiently and Effectively?

    Authored by Dr. John R. Deni.
    View the Executive Summary

    The Department of Defense can achieve deterrence and assurance objectives more effectively and efficiently through a rebalancing of its force posture. The Army should reverse the trend of the last 2 decades and forward station additional heavy units in Europe and on the Korean Peninsula, while ending lengthy, heel-to-toe rotational noncombat deployments.

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