Historical experience : burden or bonus in today’s wars? : the British army and the Bundeswehr in Afghanistan
Title: Historical experience : burden or bonus in today’s wars? : the British army and the Bundeswehr in Afghanistan
Author: SANGAR, Eric
Citation: Freiburg : Rombach, 2013, Neueste Militärgeschichte. Einsatz konkret, 2
In Iraq and Afghanistan, the British military pointed to its colonial experience as a useful resource to perform its various missions in complex and difficult environments. For the Bundeswehr, lacking any institutional experience with counterinsurgency warfare, the participation in the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) became the first combat mission abroad at all. The book explores in which way the British and German Armies have relied on historical experience in the making and adaptation of operational strategy. Eric Sangar defines »historical experience« as a body of useful knowledge that is constructed through the institutional analyses of past military campaigns with the aim of producing normative lessons for military operations in the present. In other words, Eric Sangar deals with the fundamental question if and how Armed Forces can learn from history, or if experience from the past is rather an obstacle to adaptation in the present. Dr. Eric Sangar is a research fellow at the Department of International Relations of the University of Stuttgart. He is a member of the interdisciplinary project »Corpus-based Analysis of News Coverage on Wars and Interventions« and teaches courses on conflict analysis, strategic studies, and IR theory. This study is based on his Ph.D. project, which he realized at the European University Institute in Florence (Italy) between 2008 and 2012.
Table of Contents:
-- 11 Introduction -- 33 Colonial experience in British military thinking -- 53 Historical lessons for Afghanistan in the British Army of 2010 -- 81 The initial neglect of historical experience in Afghanistan -- 113 The transformative impact of British involvement in Iraq 2003-2009 -- 137 Innovations in the British Army’s use of historical experience -- 169 Uses of historical experience by the Bundeswehr, from the Cold War to the 1990s -- 193 The Bundeswehr in Afghanistan -- 219 The impact of the neglected analysis of historical lessons at the operational level -- 237 Conclusion: Can historical experience provide guidance for the present?
Initial version: http://hdl.handle.net/1814/22687
Version: Published version of EUI PhD thesis, 2012