The United States Military in Limited War

Case Studies in Success and Failure, 1945–1999


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SKU: 9780786472314 Categories: ,

About the Book

After World War II, the United States military increasingly found itself involved in operations that have been described variously as limited wars, small wars, low intensity conflicts, operations other than war, support and stability operations, and the like. The most common name throughout much of the 1990s was “operations other than war” (OOTW). During this period there was an explosion of doctrinal material on the subject, including a 1993 official field manual listing six principles of OOTW: objective, unity of effort, legitimacy, perseverance, restraint and security.
The author of the present work examines four successful OOTWs (the Greek Civil War, Lebanon, the Dominican Republic, and Nicaragua/Honduras) and four failed ones (Vietnam, Beirut, Somalia, and Haiti) and concludes there is a positive correlation between adherence to the principles and an operation’s outcome.

About the Author(s)

Kevin Dougherty, a retired Army lieutenant colonel, is the assistant commandant for leadership programs and an adjunct professor at The Citadel in Charleston, South Carolina.

Bibliographic Details

Kevin Dougherty
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 235
Bibliographic Info: 23 photos, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2012
pISBN: 978-0-7864-7231-4
eISBN: 978-1-4766-0010-9
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Preface      1

Introduction      5

1. The Greek Civil War: A Pretty Good Balance      15

2. Lebanon: Following the Principles, but by Chance or Design?      34

3. The Dominican Republic: Security Allows Restraint      53

4. Vietnam Pacification: The Primacy of Objective      71

5. Nicaragua and Honduras: Restraint Enables Perseverance      95

6. Beirut: Unity of Effort Between Diplomacy and Force      122

7. Somalia: Weak Objective Leads to Weak Perseverance      150

8. Haiti: Restraint Needs Either Security or Legitimacy      177

9. Conclusion: The Usefulness of the Principles      195

Chapter Notes      197

Bibliography      214

Index      223

Book Reviews & Awards

Choice Outstanding Academic Title
“indispensable…essential”—Choice; “a must have reference for any military collection”—Midwest Book Review; “fascinating…clearly written”—H-Net Reviews.