"Other" Principles of War
NAVAL WAR COLL NEWPORT RI JOINT MILITARY OPERATIONS DEPT
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The recent addition of restraint, legitimacy, and perseverance to the joint operations principles of war highlights the need for a better understanding of war principles and their use. The joint principles consist of the original list of 9 war principles and the list of 3 other principles that are new. This paper will explore the history of the principles of war in an effort to better understand how the United States came to adopt the original 9 principles. It also will look into the origins of the newly added principles to understand why they were added. It is important to compare the newly added principles with the original 9 to see how they differ and what the differences might mean to the operational commander. Finally, the paper draws conclusions concerning the lack of understanding regarding the use of the other principles and the effect of these new principles on force transformation and training. The paper is not an attempt to show that restraint, legitimacy, and perseverance are not important. Quite the contrary, they are vital to current stability operations. But they reflect the current focus on stability operations and take away from the offensive and defensive operational skills that will be needed in future operations. They also lack foresight by assuming that all future wars will mirror current conflicts. The U.S. military must keep the offensive and defensive principles of war at the forefront of training and doctrine.
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics