The purpose of this monograph is to examine whether the Principles of War, as defined within the U.S. military’s Joint Publication 3-0, Joint Operations, can be applied to cyber war. Since 2005, the U.S. military recognized cyber conflict as a new domain for conducting military operations. Consequently, in order to ensure future success on the battlefield, commanders need to understand cyberspace operations and how these operations fit within the Principles of War. The methodology of this paper is to first examine, and subsequently show the history of the Principles of War in order to provide a context from which military personnel can then categorize cyberspace within the historic model. Such an examination is relevant because not only is U.S. cyber policy and strategy currently being developed, but the United States is also standing up a United States Cyber Command for the first time in history. Having discussed the Principles of War and woven them across an understanding of cyber operations, one can then see that the current Principles of War do in fact apply to cyber war. There is no need to create new Principles of War that apply exclusively to the cyber domain.
The Art of War is almost certainly the most famous study of strategy ever written and has had an extraordinary influence on the history of warfare. The principles Sun-tzu expounded were utilized brilliantly by such great Asian war leaders as Mao Tse-tung, Giap, and Yamamoto. First translated two hundred years ago by a French missionary, Sun-tzu’s Art of War has been credited with influencing Napoleon, the German General Staff, and even the planning for Desert Storm. Many Japanese companies make this book required reading for their key executives. And increasingly, Western businesspeople and others are turning to the Art of War for inspiration and advice on how to succeed in competitive situations of all kinds.
Unlike most editions of Sun-tzu currently available (many simply retreads of older, flawed translations), this superb new translation makes use of the best available classical Chinese manuscripts, including the ancient “tomb text” version discovered by archaeologists at Linyi, China.
Continue reading “The Art of War (History and Warfare)”
In today’s fast-paced world of overseas contingency and domestic operations, commanders rely on the advice of JAG Corps personnel to make critical decisions, sometimes involving life and death. Demand for this advice is high and will likely increase. The complexity of the operational environment is also growing. We can be sure that technological advances on the 21st Century battlefield will take us into uncharted legal territory, where we will be expected to analyze the complexities and provide accurate advice faster than ever before. Our ability to do so will have a direct impact on America’s capacity to effectively project power across the spectrum of conflict. Commanders count on legal teams knowledgeable in subjects ranging from weapon selection and target engagement to nation building and counterinsurgency activities. That’s why the second edition of the Air Force Operations & the Law: a Guide for Air & Space Forces is so important.