Academic journal article Military Review

Spirit, Blood, and Treasure: The American Cost of Battle in the 21st Century

Academic journal article Military Review

Spirit, Blood, and Treasure: The American Cost of Battle in the 21st Century

Article excerpt

SPIRIT, BLOOD, AND TREASURE: The American Cost of Battle in the 21st Century, Donald Vandergriff, ed., Presidio Press, Novato, CA, 2001, 424 pages, $34.95.

Discussion of the future transformation of the U.S. military, although somewhat muted since the events of 11 September 2001, has begun to reemerge as a contentious issue, particularly since President George W. Bush unveiled his new military budget request. Spirit, Blood, and Treasure: The American Cost of Battle in the 21st Century attempts to identify some of the innovative changes necessary for improving U.S. military capability. The emphasis is on improving the ability to react faster than can potential enemies and to reform the defense establishment to be able to adapt to rapidly changing future circumstances.

According to this collection of articles, 21st-century conflict is evolving into a pattern where opposing forces can attack the political will of adversaries while avoiding direct confrontation with conventional military forces. This type of conflict is known as fourth-generation warfare. This book argues that the military-- industrial-congressional complex (MICC) has been unable to adapt to the changing external environment and to prepare the military to efficiently achieve its objectives in fourth-generation warfare scenarios. …

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