Theory of War Strategy
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In any conflict, be it military or otherwise, a clearly-defined strategy is essential to success. In American history, countless war strategies have been used to varying effects, but the unifying factor is that there is always a strategy in place. Understanding various war strategies, their past degrees of effectiveness, and the situations in which they are most successfully applied allows military and government professionals to lead their forces into success. War strategies are just as important as the actual forces themselves, and understanding this is essential to victory.
To fully formulate a war strategy, several components must be considered. First and foremost is the nature of the conflict. By determining whether the conflict is cold or hot, who the enemy is, what their capabilities are, and what the motivations for the conflict are, military and government personnel can create new or adapt existing war strategies to meet the task at hand. Second, a war strategy needs to incorporate existing alliances on both sides. Knowing and understanding an enemy's alliances allows one to be more fully prepared for the long-term consequences of a conflict; knowing and understanding one's own alliances allows one to formulate a war strategy that reflects the true capabilities and logistics of these forces. Finally, war strategies need to encompass some sort of moral perspective. Conflict can quickly become inhumane and excessive, and following some sort of moral compass will ensure a conflict is neither fought under false pretenses nor perceived in a negative way by future generations or other nations. War is not a pleasant occurrence; nearly every individual will agree that all other courses of action need to be attempted before one resorts to war. If one does need to go to this extreme, though, it is best if one has a war strategy in place, considering the short- and long-term factors in order to achieve success.