'War is the most important thing in the world', writes Martin van Creveld, one of the world's best-known experts on military history and strategy.
The survival of every country, government, and individual is ultimately dependent on war - or the ability to wage it in self-defence. That is why, though it may come but once in a hundred years, it must be prepared for every day. When it is too late-when the bodies lie stiff and people weep over them-those in charge have failed in their duty.
Nevertheless, in spite of the centrality of war to human history and culture, there has for long been no modern attempt to provide a replacement for the classics on war and strategy, Sun Tzu's The Art of War, dating from the 5th or 6th century BC, and Carl von Clausewitz's On War, written in the aftermath of the Napoleonic Wars.
What is needed is a modern, comprehensive, easy to read and understand theory of war for the 21st century that could serve as a replacement for these classic texts. The purpose of the present book is to provide just such a theory.
Martin van Creveld was born in the Netherlands but has lived in Israel since 1950. Widely acknowledged as one of the world's best-known experts on military history and strategy, he is perhaps most well-known for his 1991 volume, The Transformation of War, which was the first to predict the demise of conventional war and the rise of terrorism. The author of some thirty other books, which between them have been published in twenty languages, he has acted as a military consultant for several countries, appeared in hundreds of TV and radio shows, and written for, or been interviewed in, hundreds of magazines and papers all over the world.
Introduction. The Crisis of Military Theory 1: Why War? 2: Economics and War 3: The Challenge of War 4: Building the Forces 5: The Conduct of War 6: On Strategy 7: War at Sea 8: Air- Space- and Cyber War 9: Nuclear War 10: War and Law 11: Asymmetric War 12: Perspectives: Change, Continuity and the Future Acknowledgements Index