- Paperback: 352 pages
- Publisher: Princeton University Press; unknown edition (July 23, 2006)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0691128022
- ISBN-13: 978-0691128023
- Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 0.8 x 9.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 14 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #270,916 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Military Power: Explaining Victory and Defeat in Modern Battle unknown Edition
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Superlatives hardly do this book justice. It simultaneously makes major contributions in political science, military history, social science methodology, and contemporary policy debates. Stephen Biddle comprehensively and convincingly dismantles two of the most important literatures in international relations theory in the United States: realism and the offence-defense balance.---Ted Hopf, International History Review
Stephen Biddle has written perhaps the best volume on the causes of battlefield victory and defeat in a generation. . . . . This is a seminal work on an issue of critical importance.---Spencer D. Bakich, Virginia Quarterly Review
Biddle's focus is on medium--and high--intensity land war; he combines a sophisticated formal model with analysis of critical case studies of actual battles. His argument has important implications for the structure of all modern military forces and shows persuasively that troops skilled in executing the modern system, not high-tech weapons alone, assure victory. It is a major achievement. (Choice)
Stephen Biddle has written a worthy book on the never-ending debate over why land wars are won and lost. It contributes to the academic literature, and his policy judgments deserve attention. . . . It is well worth reading, owning, and remembering.---Richard L. Kugler, Perspectives on Politics
Stephen Biddle's Military Power deserves serious attention from military historians. Military Power makes a powerful argument that has redefined thinking within political science and policy circles on why armies win battles. . . . Biddle has produced an outstanding work that addresses a question central to historians, political scientists, and policy-makers.---Carter Malkasian, Journal of Military History
From the Back Cover
"Stephen Biddle's Military Power is one of the most important contributions to strategic studies in recent decades. Presenting a very powerful case for a very surprising argument on a very important question, it will be controversial in some quarters, but critics will be hard-pressed to refute the case."--Richard K. Betts, Columbia University, author of Military Readiness
"Fascinating, precisely written, indeed, brilliant, Military Power is among the most important books ever published on modern warfare. Stephen Biddle fundamentally rethinks the causes of victory and defeat in modern war and challenges almost the entire corpus of scholarship on assessing force capability and the role of offense and defense in determining war outcomes. Presenting his argument with power, balance, and subtlety, he synthesizes many partial historical explanations and provides a basis for understanding why so many 'rules of thumb' and other explanations are misleading. A landmark work."--Lynn Eden, Stanford University, author of Whole World on Fire
"Steve Biddle may be the best American defense analyst of his generation, and this book is quite possibly his career masterpiece to date. Few are as well qualified as Biddle to weave together vivid descriptions of the modern battlefield, clear explanations of historical lessons, a detailed understanding of defense technology, and a sophisticated use of military models and war games. Biddle does all these things, helping the reader understand modern warfare more than does any other book on the market. His argument about trends in warfare transcends the popular theory that a revolution in military affairs is now underway. He replaces this theory with a more convincing, more historical, and less technology-obsessed view of the modern battlefield."--Michael O'Hanlon, Senior Fellow, Brookings Institution
Top customer reviews
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The author presents a balanced, provocative and well presented case for how victory or defeat occurs in battle. This book is designed for both the tecnical numbers kind of person and also the less technical. The chapters can be read as a stand alone or you can also go through the entire book. Either way it has immense value.
The thesis of this book is that force employment, or the doctrine and tactics by which forces are used in combat is centrally important. This book is great reading, is controversial in its presentation but clearly provides both empirical and quantitative analysis to support his position. THIS BOOK IS A MUST READ.
Overall, he gives an interesting analysis (and a semi-predictive model) of how proper application of this "modern system" influences the outcome of battles. He focuses on how the Modern System includes the use of dispersion, cover, concealment, small independent units, and combined arms in a very interesting way. The book is largely a rebuttal to the more extreme arguments made by advocates of the Revolution in Military Affairs, and I feel that sometimes the author overplays his arguments to counter the RMA advocates.
Most recent customer reviews
A nice example of modeling in Social sciences.