Weapons and Strategy for Future Wars Two Books Scope out Possible Crises and How the US Will Fight Them

By Lamb, Gregory M. | The Christian Science Monitor, February 3, 1997 | Go to article overview

Weapons and Strategy for Future Wars Two Books Scope out Possible Crises and How the US Will Fight Them


Lamb, Gregory M., The Christian Science Monitor


Digital Soldiers: The Evolution of High-Tech Weaponry and Tomorrow's Brave New Battlefield

By James F. Dunnigan

St. Martin's Press 309 pp., $25.95 The Next War By Caspar Weinberger and Peter Schweizer Regnery Publishing Inc. 470 pp., $27.50 What kind of future wars will the United States be called on to fight? What kind of technology will be most effective in these wars? What weapons will be available and how well will they work? What has history taught us? These are just some of the questions James F. Dunnigan says military strategists must constantly weigh. He makes a frontal assault on them himself, and emerges with a decisive victory, in Digital Soldiers: The Evolution of High-Tech Weaponry and Tomorrow's Brave New Battlefield. If there can be such a thing as a readable book on modern warfare, this is it. Dunnigan leads readers through an acronym-mined terrain of TOWs, SAMs, AWACS, HEATs, and their innumerable brethren. Readers desperate for enlightenment, but short on time, can charge through a 10-minute chapter giving the book's chief conclusions. A glossary helps readers separate SLBMs from ICBMs PDQ (pretty darn quick). Dunnigan doesn't have "star wars" dazzling in his eyes. But he's not exactly a techno-skeptic, either. In the 1960s and '70s, he points out, the press had a field day exposing faults in high-technology weapons. But by the time they were used in the Gulf war, most performed well. "New high-technology weapons may not work at all that well when first released," he writes. "But if you keep improving them, they will eventually become quite capable in combat. A decade or two of use will usually turn any new weapon into something useful on the battlefield." The pitfall is to spend too freely on high-tech glitz and ignore other essentials. "Technology is easy, training is hard," he says. "This is why there are so many well-equipped troops in the world who don't know how to use their weapons very well." The "digital" warfare of the near future means more laser-guided bombs and other "smart" weapons. But it won't mean Terminator-style androids roaming the battlefield. Most crucially, it means a leap forward in communications: Get information to and from your forces faster than the enemy, and you win. "The 'laptop general' and his electronic tendrils will change warfare in ways not seen before in military history," Dunnigan argues. Taking advantage of new technologies also means giving up old assumptions. Robotic or remote-controlled aircraft and missiles will eventually retire one military icon - that glamorous guy in the sky - the fighter pilot. The most efficient ships may be not much more than floating platforms - packed with 500 missiles but 100 or fewer crew members - a far cry from the thousands of sailors aircraft carriers need today. For Dunnigan, the cost of developing new aircraft like the F-22 fighter and B-2 bomber doesn't make fiscal sense. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Weapons and Strategy for Future Wars Two Books Scope out Possible Crises and How the US Will Fight Them
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

    Already a member? Log in now.