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SAASS Student Support AY23

FOUNDATIONS OF MILITARY THEORY

Air University Library Course Support

FOUNDATIONS OF MILITARY THEORY
SAASS 600
25 July 2022 - 19 August 2022


"This course is indeed a foundational one for the future strategist as it asks and allows you to think through the answers to the following questions:

  • What is war?  What purpose can and should it serve?  What is war’s nature and what, if anything, causes that nature to change?  Is war an art, a science, or both?
  • Can theory be timeless or is it merely a product of its context?  What drives the creation of theory?  What makes good theory? 
  • What is strategy? Is strategy best conceptualized as a theory of victory, a plan to accomplish a goal, or both?  What separates effective from ineffective strategies?  Why is strategy easy to comprehend in concept but difficult to do in execution?"


Some materials listed below require access to subscription databases.  If you cannot gain access, contact your local library for availability.  AU students and faculty can contact the Library's Database Request Page for a password.


Internet Resources

Listed below is on-line information about books and their authors used in this course.


Fairchild Center Bibliographies:

Great Warrior Leaders/Thinkers
Links to Air University Library resources and Internet information on twenty-four military leaders, including:  Sun Tzu, Clausewitz, JominiFullerLiddell HartMahanCorbettDouhet.


Seminar One: 

Ralph D. Sawyer      Biography
The Seven Military Classics of Ancient China           Review 

Seminar Two:

Beatrice Heuser     Biography
"Christine de Pizan, the First Modern Strategist"   (Book chapter from "Strategy Before Clausewitz:  Linking Warfare and Statecraft, 1400-1830")

Christine de Pizan       Biography
The Book of Deeds of Arms and of Chivalry         Review

Hugo Grotius     Biography
Hugo Grotius on the Law of War and Peace      Description 

Seminar Three and Seminar Four:

Clausewitz
Clausewitz Homepage

A Wake for Clausewitz:  Toward a Philosophy of 21st-Century Warfare
Part of Clausewitz Homepage

Seminar Five:

Jomini
Antoine Henri Jomini
from  Encyclopedia.com

The Influence of Clausewitz on Jomini's Précis de l'Art de la Guerre
MA Dissertation, King's College London by Christoph M. V. Abegglen

John Shy   Obituary
Jomini (Chapter from:  Makers of Modern Strategy:  From Machiavelli to the Nuclear Age)

Mark Erbel     Biography
Christopher Kinsey     Biography
Think Again - Supplying War:  Reappraising Military Logistics and Centrality to Strategy and War      (Article)

Seminar Six:

Mahan's Classical View and the Profession of Arms   (scroll down to pg. 104)
by Donald D. Chipman

 Alfred Thayer Mahan   (from Encyclopedia.com)
The Influence of Sea Power Upon History, 1660-1783     Review 

Seminar Seven:

Julian S. Corbett    Biography
Some Principles of Maritime Strategy     Description 

Seminar Eight:

 Giulio Douhet    (from Encyclopedia.com)

 The Command of the Air by Giulio Douhet:  A Military Times Classic
 Article in Military History Matters

Seminar Nine:

 John Slessor    Biography 1    Biography 2
 Air Power and Armies    Review  

Seminar Ten:

Sir Basil Henry Liddell-Hart   (from the International Encyclopedia of the First World War)
Strategy      

Seminar Eleven:

 J.F.C. Fuller and Basil Liddell Hart 
 Chapter 15 - Clausewitz,  by Christopher Bassford (Clausewitz Homepage)

 J.F.C. Fuller    Biography
 The Foundations of the Science of War 

Brian Holden Reid 
"Young Turks, or Not So Young?":  The Frustrated Quest of Major General J.F.C. Fuller and Captain B.H. Liddell Hart      (Journal Article)

Seminar Twelve:

 Colin Gray     Article (Obituary)   
 The Strategy Bridge:  Theory for Practice     Review  (Scroll down to pg 1489)

Seminar Thirteen:

Fred Charles Ikle        Article (Obituary)
Every War Must End     Review    Publisher Description   Book Discussion   (C-Span Video)

National Security Archive
Afghanistan 20/20:  The 20 Year War in 20 Documents

Seminar Fourteen:

Timothy L. Thomas   Biography  (Scroll down to pg. 187)
 Russian Military Thought:  Concepts and Elements   

Seminar Fifteen:

Xiao Tianliang  
The Science of Strategy


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