Understanding Victory and Defeat in Contemporary War

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Jan Angstrom, Isabelle Duyvesteyn
Taylor & Francis, Nov 22, 2006 - History - 272 pages
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Bringing together leading contributors in the field, this new volume analyzes how victory and defeat in modern war can be understood and explained.

It does so by confronting two inter-related research problems: the nature of victory and defeat in modern war and the explanations of victory and defeat. By first questioning the extent to which the concepts of victory and defeat are meaningful to describe the outcomes of modern wars, and whether the contents of these concepts are changing, it then evaluates different theories purporting to explain the outcomes of war and the impact of variables, ranging from technology to culture. The book tackles several key questions:

  • What is the definition of victory in the ‘War on Terror’?
  • What is the meaning of victory and defeat in contemporary insurgencies, such as those in Iraq and Afghanistan?
  • Are the counterstrategies that were developed in the mid-twentieth century valid in order to deal with present and future conflicts?

With case studies ranging from the Malayan Emergency to the current conflict in Iraq, Understanding Victory and Defeat in Contemporary War will be of great interest to students of war and conflict studies, security studies, military history and international relations.

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Bringing together leading contributors in the field, this new volume analyzes how victory and defeat in modern war can be understood and explained.

It does so by confronting two inter-related research problems: the nature of victory and defeat in modern war and the explanations of victory and defeat. By first questioning the extent to which the concepts of victory and defeat are meaningful to describe the outcomes of modern wars, and whether the contents of these concepts are changing, it then evaluates different theories purporting to explain the outcomes of war and the impact of variables, ranging from technology to culture. The book tackles several key questions:

  • What is the definition of victory in the ‘War on Terror’?
  • What is the meaning of victory and defeat in contemporary insurgencies, such as those in Iraq and Afghanistan?
  • Are the counterstrategies that were developed in the mid-twentieth century valid in order to deal with present and future conflicts?

With case studies ranging from the Malayan Emergency to the current conflict in Iraq, Understanding Victory and Defeat in Contemporary War will be of great interest to students of war and conflict studies, security studies, military history and international relations.

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