Accession Number : ADA194883

Title :   A Theory of Conflict and Operational Art,

Corporate Author : ARMY COMMAND AND GENERAL STAFF COLL FORT LEAVENWORTH KS SCHOOL OF ADVANCED MIL ITARY STUDIES

Personal Author(s) : Fastabend, David A

PDF Url : ADA194883

Report Date : 09 May 1988

Pagination or Media Count : 69

Abstract : Several theoretical and doctrinal problems limit current US Army understanding of conflict, war and operational art. Those problems include confusion between conflict and war, ambiguity of theoretical terms such as 'center of gravity' or 'culminating point,' and difficulty in describing the mechanism through which operational art links tactical successes to strategic aims. The premise of this monograph is that several of these problems can be attributed to a failure to understand war as a subset of conflict. The monograph attempts to outline a theoretical model of operational art as an aspect of conflict rather than of war. The theoretical relationship of conflict, war and operational art is presented using a 'structure' analogy. Conflict theory is the foundation of the doctrinal structure. The structure itself encompasses both war and warfare ('actions short of war'). Operational art is a structural framework necessary for success in both war and warfare. The model has implications for our understanding of the role of ideas in conflict and war. It provides insights into 'actions short of war.' It suggests some potential deficiencies in the concepts and organization of our current doctrine of operational art. The model also demonstrates the critical consequences of theory for our understanding of war and operational art.

Descriptors :   *CONFLICT, *MILITARY DOCTRINE, DEFICIENCIES, LIMITATIONS, MODELS, THEORY, WARFARE

Subject Categories : Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics

Distribution Statement : APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE