Winning Wars

The Enduring Nature and Changing Character of Victory from Antiquity to the 21st Century

Using a series of historical case studies, experts explore what actually is winning in a military context.
Publication date:
March 2021
Publisher :
Casemate Academic
Editor :
Matthias Strohn
Format Available     Quantity Price
ISBN : 9781952715006

Dimensions : 229 X 152 mm
Available in 3-4 weeks
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• A multi-author volume bringing together experts on all periods of military history
• Essays examine the different traditions that have emerged through history of what winning a war actually means, and what this can tell us about how wars should now be fought
• Experts examining a really vital, and practical aspect of waging war - what would 'winning' a conflict actually look like, what is the overall objective?

While 'winning' might be considered a fundamental part of the human objective, what constitutes winning and how one might achieve it remain somewhat abstract, in war as in any other human endeavour. 'Winning' militarily at the tactical level - in a firefight or a battle - has always been more quantifiable than at the strategic level. At the strategic level, success might be measured by means of three big ideas: ownership; intervention for effect; and fighting for ideas. The divergence between success at the tactical level and the political context of the war creates a challenge at the operational level when it relates to political and strategic matters.

The result of a research project carried out by the Centre for Historical Analysis and Conflict Research for the British Army, this book analyses the philosophical constituents of what may comprise ‘victory' or ‘winning' and then travels, chronologically, through a wide set of historical case studies, exploring those more philosophical components and weaving them into the factual discussion. Thus the factual relation and analysis is the vehicle for a deeper exploration of the concept of success or ‘winning', rather than a narrative end in itself.


Although much of the book's focus is about winning in conventional wars, the insights about the components in measuring effectiveness in such warfare also apply to assessing effectiveness in counterterrorism.
Perspectives on Terrorism

Comprising sixteen excellent and thought-provoking essays by eighteen noted military historians and former warriors, the book comprehensively examines the realities of war and the wide-ranging concepts of victory. At the same time, it offers a very good general history of warfare.
Baird Maritime

…a salutary reminder that it is all too possible to win the war but lose the peace.
Miniature Wargames - Arthur Harman extremely rich book, containing a multitude of insights.
Militaire Spectator

…extremely readable and jargon-free. […] very instructive collection.
RUSI Journal