cover image The New Rules of War: Victory in the Age of Durable Disorder

The New Rules of War: Victory in the Age of Durable Disorder

Sean McFate. Morrow, $29.99 (336p) ISBN 978-0-06-284358-6

McFate’s experience as professor of strategy at the National Defense University and Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service, plus time spent in the Army’s 82nd Airborne Division and as a private military contractor in Africa, inform this standout work of military science. McFate defines the present global condition as one of “durable disorder,” the principal feature of which is persistent and perpetual armed conflict. Entities like China, Iran, terrorist organizations, and drug cartels, all of whom have less money and firepower than the U.S., are more effective in the new forms of warfare, such as strategic subversion and information campaigns, covert proxy or “shadow” wars that may include private mercenaries, economic warfare, terrorist attacks, and strategic manipulation of laws to further their agendas. He predicts that, unless America thinks its way out of its present “strategic incompetence,” it will continue to lose conflicts, and others who do not fight conventionally will “inherit the world.” McFate backs up his theories with examples drawn from history, both recent and ancient, and his own personal experience. For example, he looks at British Maj.-Gen. John Fuller, who wrote in 1928 about how tanks and aircraft could be used in concert to invade a country quickly; while his compatriots called him a crackpot, Germans read his books and created the blitzkrieg. This is an authoritative and skillful analysis of the state of war today. [em](Jan.) [/em]