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Thursday, December 01, 2005

"...They can then spend their time in prison reading Clausewitz and Sun Tzu."

Interview with Martin van Creveld

When you talk about military history and strategy, you can't help but cite Dr. Martin van Creveld, author of such notable works as The Transformation of War and Supplying War: Logistics from Wallenstein to Patton. He has written 17 books so far and is a professor at the Hebrew University, Jerusalem, where he has been teaching since 1971.

According to Dr. Chet Richards, van Creveld's Fighting Power was among the late Col. John Boyd's favorites. Any book worthy of John Boyd's attention is worthy enough for any serious student of strategy.

His book The Transformation of War tells us of fourth generation warfare (4GW) -- not the term he used but that�s what it is. Richards wrote, "Van Creveld has seen the future, and you won't like it: It's non-trinitarian, non-Clausewitzian, and probably not winnable by organized state armies." In other words, more like the world Sun Tzu competed in. Martin van Creveld, then, is not only a foremost thinker of warfare's history but also of its future.

As you will see in our interview with him, he did not mince words with us. And we wouldn't want it any other way. When we informed him of a news article about how Bush officials bristle at the suggestion the war in Iraq looks like Vietnam, he replied, "Well, let them do some bristling. These people should be impeached, tried and punished for misleading the American people into a senseless war. They can then spend their time in prison reading Clausewitz and Sun Tzu." Whether you agree or disagree, Martin van Creveld's words have substance and are not mere conjecture. Dismiss them at our nation's peril.

To read more about Dr. van Creveld and his works, go to Google's scholar feature. Enjoy the interview!
read it here:


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