The Changing Nature of Warfare, the Factors Mediating Future Conflict, and Implications for SOF

Authored by:
John Alexander
Published on 4/1/2006
Digital Only

This paper challenges the prevailing sentiment regarding the nature of war. Designed to generate discussion on topics where little or none has been acceptable, it pushes the envelope of traditional political and military science thinking. It argues that the nature of war has changed at a fundamental level-that of definition. Further, information technology is so pervasive and interpenetrating that its impact cannot be relegated to mere alteration in the techniques by which war is prosecuted. Rather, information technology facilitates new social structures, exacerbates competing hierarchical beliefs, and, combined with other factors, enhances the ability of powerful nations, or other philosophical organizations, to impose their will on adversaries.