A response to fourth generation warfare

DSpace/Manakin Repository


Search DR-NTU

Advanced Search Subject Search


My Account

A response to fourth generation warfare

Show full item record

Title: A response to fourth generation warfare
Author: Amos Khan
Copyright year: 2010
Abstract: Fourth Generation Warfare (4GW) claims that non-state insurgencies are the wave of the future. Furthermore, 4GW is presented as a radically new form of warfare and defeating it thus requires equally radical changes in military organization and thought. This theory is seriously flawed because it says nothing new, exaggerates the characteristics of insurgency and suffers from bad history. Proponents of 4GW such as Martin van Creveld and Thomas X. Hammes inaccurately distinguish insurgency as “political” and “non-Trinitarian”, when in fact both political will and Clausewitz’s Trinity are an integral part of all wars. Insurgency is claimed to be the latest “generation” of warfare. However, a survey of military history shows that warfare did not develop in four clear “generations”. Furthermore, insurgency is as old as warfare itself and its principles have been understood since antiquity. 4GW is thus both inaccurate and unnecessary. We would do well to simply abandon the theory as it is not the solution to dealing with insurgencies. Military thinkers should instead study insurgency within the larger context of history if they wish to understand it.
Subject: DRNTU::Social sciences::Military and naval science
Type: Working Paper
Series/ Journal Title: RSIS Working Paper ; 211/10
School: S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies

Files in this item

Files Size Format View
WP211.pdf 335.0Kb PDF View/Open

This item appears in the following Collection(s)

Show full item record


Total views

All Items Views
A response to fourth generation warfare 377

Total downloads

All Bitstreams Views
WP211.pdf 245

Top country downloads

Country Code Views
United States of America 94
China 30
Singapore 12
United Kingdom 9
Netherlands 7

Top city downloads

city Views
Mountain View 55
Singapore 10
Roosendaal 7
Beijing 4
Athens 3

Downloads / month

  2015-01 2015-02 2015-03 total
WP211.pdf 0 0 1 1