Crane is the Senior Historian at the Strategic Studies Institute (SSI). He was the chief of analysis and research for the US Army Heritage and Education Center at Carlisle Barracks. He arrived at the Army War College in 2000 after a 26-year career in the Army. He previously served in SSI and as the director of the Military History Institute. He holds a bachelor of science from the US Military Academy and a master of arts and PhD from Stanford University. He has authored or edited books and monographs on the Civil War, World War I, World War II, Korea, Vietnam, and Iraq, and has written and lectured widely on airpower and landpower issues.
Before leaving SSI, he coauthored a prewar study on reconstructing Iraq that influenced Army planners and has attracted much attention from the media. He was the lead author for the groundbreaking Army-USMC counterinsurgency manual which was released in December 2006. In November 2008, he was named the international Archivist of the Year by the Scone Foundation. He published two books in 2016, one for Naval Institute Press about the creation and application of American counterinsurgency doctrine, entitled Cassandra in Oz: Counterinsurgency and Future War, and another for University Press of Kansas titled American Airpower Strategy in World War II: Bombs, Cities, Civilians, and Oil. Also in 2016 he was awarded the Society for Military History Samuel Eliot Morison Prize for lifetime contributions to the field of military history.
“From the Acting Editor in Chief“, Parameters, vol. 53, no. 1, Spring 2023, pp. 5-6.
“From the Acting Editor in Chief“, Parameters, vol. 52, no. 4, Winter 2022-23, pp. 3-4.
Korean War Biological Warfare Allegations Against the United States: A Playbook for the Current Crisis in Ukraine“, US Army War College Press 2022.
“Matthew Ridgway and the Value of Persistent Dissent“, Parameters, vol. 51, no. 2, Summer 2021, pp. 7-18.
“Matthew Ridgway and the Battle of the Bulge“, Parameters, vol. 49, no. 3, Fall 2019, pp. 65-78.
Creating Great Expectations: Strategic Communications and American Airpower, US Army War College Press, 2018.
“The Lure of Strike“, Parameters
, vol. 43, no. 2, Summer 2013, pp. 5-12.
Precedents, Variables, and Options in Planning a U.S. Military Disengagement Strategy from Iraq, US Army War College Press, 2005.
“Beware of Boldness“, Parameters, vol. 36, no. 2, Summer 2006, pp. 88-97.
Precedents, Variables, and Options in Planning a U.S. Military Disengagement Strategy from Iraq
, US Army War College Press, 2005.
Reconstructing Iraq: Insights, Challenges, and Missions for Military Forces in a Post-Conflict Scenario, US Army War College Press, 2003.
Avoiding Vietnam: The U.S. Army’s Response to Defeat in Southeast Asia, US Army War College Press, 2002.
Facing the Hydra: Maintaining Strategic Balance while Pursuing a Global War against Terrorism, US Army War College Press, 2002.
Transforming Defense an Era of Peace and Prosperity, US Army War College Press, 2001.
Landpower and Crises: Army Roles and Missions in Smaller-Scale Contingencies During the 1990s, US Army War College Press, 2001.
Alternative National Military Strategies for the United States, US Army War College Press, 2000.