Strategic choice: United States Special Forces' comparative advantage in irregular warfare
Payne, Steven F.
Rothstein, Hy S.
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Over the last 100 years, strong state actors have struggled to achieve policy goals when involved in conflicts with weaker actors. Irregular Warfare has become the tool of choice for weak opponents to wage war against strong actors such as the United States. Weak actors are achieving more frequent success against powerful opponents by using indirect strategies. This thesis examines the conflict interaction between weak and strong actors. For the strong actor, this thesis identifies that when there is limited political maneuver space, limited resources, and the importance of the objective is less than vital to national security interests, an indirect strategy becomes the most practical approach to combat a weaker opponent using an indirect approach. Using the aforementioned methodology, this thesis concludes that U.S. Army Special Forces have a comparative advantage over conventional forces to provide the National Command Authorities with a means to address indirect threats from weaker actors.
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Balint, Matthew S. (Monterey, California: Naval Postgraduate School, 2013-12);The United States has repeatedly engaged in irregular warfareincluding counterinsurgency, foreign internal defense, and unconventional warfarethroughout its history. However, despite its familiarity with irregular warfare, ...
Greenheck, Kyle L. (Monterey, California: Naval Postgraduate School, 2016-06);The United States continues to be drawn into complex conflict environments where multiple internal and external state and non-state actors (NSAs) compete for influence. This thesis seeks to address how an external state ...
Kotula, Kevin R.; Richardson, Timothy L. (Monterey, California. Naval Postgraduate School, 2011-12);This thesis builds upon existing contemporary theories that attempt to explain the outcomes of asymmetric conflict. Specifically, this thesis uses Ivan Arreguin-Toft's Strategic Interaction Theory as a baseline to identify ...