Dr. Pournelle has the mike

Tuesday , 26, May 2015 Leave a comment

An announcement by Jerry Pournelle, author of The Strategy of Technology:

We are bringing out, in both electronic and print production, The Strategy of Technology, a 1970 book that was once a text in some of the Service Academies and still is in use at two of the War Colleges. This is not a new edition: it remains mostly the same as the hard to read copy available as an eBook on line or at exorbitant prices as used printed books. There are also Xerox copies kicking around.

The principles of the strategy of technology remain pretty constant, but all the examples in the book are of course Cold War or World War II, with a few “Small War” lessons and a bit on Korea.

It does not take account of Martin Van Creveld’s Transformation of War and it should acknowledge that important work; war has changed radically since 1970, and while Van Creveld mistakenly uses the politically motivated American retreat from Viet Nam as an example of the new era, subsequent events have made it clear that while Clausewitz remains important, he is incomplete.

War remains, but its nature has changed. To Clausewitz war was the continuation of diplomacy by other means. As Van Creveld shows, there are new forms of combat that Clausewitz would not recognize that can be as decisive as the old forms of war – ask the inhabitants of the Crimea, or eastern Ukraine. There are also combatants who are not nations: al Qaeda being a famous example. Yet States and Armies remain and can be decisive.

Read the rest there.

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