Is Conventional Warfare A Thing Of The Past?

As someone who studies war but in international relations it is called conflict management and resolution…I am always looking at our reactions to situations that require an armed response……in other words….the use of our military.

With all this War on Terror do we still have a military that will fight and win in a conventional war? Or is a conventional war ………what the Hell is conventional warfare?

Good question…..and yes the professor has an answer……

Conventional warfare is a form of warfare conducted by using conventional military weapons and battlefield tactics between two or more states in open confrontation. The forces on each side are well-defined, and fight using weapons that primarily target the opposing army. It is normally fought using conventional weapons, and not with chemical, biological, or nuclear weapons. The general purpose of conventional warfare is to weaken or destroy the opponent’s military force, thereby negating its ability to engage in conventional warfare. In forcing capitulation, however, one or both sides may eventually resort to unconventional warfare tactics.

But wait….not to be confused with non-conventional warfare……huh?

A broad spectrum of military andparamilitary operations, normally of long duration, predominantlyconducted through, with, or by indigenous or surrogate forces whoare organized, trained, equipped,supported, and directed in varyingdegrees by an external source. It includes, but is not limited to,guerrilla warfare, subversion,sabotage, intelligence activities,and unconventional assistedrecovery.

With all the problems with international terrorism is it possible that conventional warfare is outdated?

And yes…there is an answer to that $64 question…..

Numerous voices have claimed that the day of conventional war is over. For years, these voices have predicted that “war amongst the people,” or “hybrid war,” or “gray zone operations,” or “distributed security missions,” are the new face of war. But conventional war—however it may be changing—may not be as dead as some believe. Danger is already emerging from the confluence of several unfolding trends.

Source: Conventional Warfare: Not Dead Yet | RealClearDefense

I realize that this subject means very little to most….but those days are quickly coming to an end.

A conventional war means a logistic nightmare….too many moving pieces these days….but the answer to this is small unit ops…..the special forces.

Our new president will try to avoid a conventional war by fighting terrorism……with the least amount of individuals as possible…..but why?

Reports from earlier this monththat Pentagon has been increasing deployments of special forces around the Middle East and Africa appears to be continuing apace, with the most recent reports suggesting that President Trump has expanded the deployments into Central Africa, and is continuing the policy across the region.

The use of small-scale special forces as an alternative to larger deployments of regular combat soldiers became popular in the Obama Administration as a way to keep official troop levels comparatively low while getting into more and more military operations around the world.

A small unit op is easier to hide than an all out invasion……while a conventional war is NOT out of the question, especially fighting terrorism, it will be less likely for the funding can be pulled from the “Black Budget” and NO accountability is the key….you see a small amount of causalities is easier to hide than massive losses….small losses can be sent to page 4 of the paper where big losses will be front page news.

But military planners are thinking to the future……with Russia and China flexing their muscles……

Today, military planners focus intensely on countering Russian revanchism in Europe and containing Chinese expansionism in Asia. After more than a decade and a half of fighting “small wars” In Iraq and Afghanistan and conducting counterterrorism strikes in many more countries, our national security focus and increasingly prevailingwisdomsuggest the international system may be returning to an era of great power war.

Despite predictions to the contrary great power conflict will not dominate global security issues in the twenty-first century. Wars between great powers have steadily declined since WWII with the influence of nuclear weapons upon the international system, a trend that pre-dates American hegemony and argues against unipolarity as the sole causal factor. However, while great power war is unlikely to emerge in the near future, war itself will remain a constant feature of the international system. Instead of large-scale, inter-state conflicts, though, the prevalent form of conflict for the foreseeable future will be civil wars. Nationalism, or even fragmented and atomized derivative identities, will be the driving factor behind these conflicts, manifesting principally as insurgencies.

Source: Balancing Force Modernization and the Most Likely Future Wars We’ll Be Fighting | RealClearDefense

There are two schools here…..but does it really matter?

A war by any other name is still a war.

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