War, Peace, and Victory: Strategy and Statecraft for the Next Century

Colin S. Gray, Author Simon & Schuster $24.45 (442p) ISBN 978-0-671-60695-4
Gray's impressively broad study defines what strategy is, how it has been applied and misapplied throughout history, and explains its role in the apparent Western victory in the Cold War. Five interrelated themes dominate the book: the unity of strategic phenomena, the influence of geography, the value of historical experience, the influence of national culture and the consequences of technological change in relation to strategy and statecraft. With frequent reference to Karl von Clausewitz, Alfred Mahan and other writers on strategy, Gray offers historical examples of strategy in action. He notes, for instance, that the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor was an operational masterpiece but a strategic catastrophe, and that basic strategic doctrine was all but ignored by the U.S. throughout the Vietnam War. Calling for a holistic appreciation of strategy, he argues persuasively that strategic planning in the U.S. needs to be more inclusive. An authoritative addition to the thin shelf of books on this important subject, by the president of the National Institute for Public Policy and author of Nuclear Strategy and National Style. (July)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1990
Release date: 01/01/1990
Paperback - 448 pages - 978-0-671-74029-0
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