Accession Number:

ADA562431

Title:

American Grand Strategy: A Critical Analysis of the Historical Strategy to Balance Liberty and Order

Descriptive Note:

Master's thesis

Corporate Author:

NATIONAL DEFENSE UNIV NORFOLK VA JOINT ADVANCED WARFIGHTING SCHOOL

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:

2012-06-15

Pagination or Media Count:

202.0

Abstract:

This thesis is a critical analysis of the complete historical continuum of American grand strategy. The study focuses on how American grand strategy has balanced liberty and order in both domestic political development and foreign policy engagements with the world throughout its history. The purpose is to draw lessons from history to shape the strategic design of Americas grand strategy so it is effective in the 21st century. The strategic approach for this study follows Clausewitzs model, which includes historical research, critical analysis, and historical criticism. First, the theoretical fundamentals of strategy and grand strategy are explored to develop a working theory of grand strategy. Then, the study surveys and analyzes the development of American self-government from 1620 to 1787 to develop the fundamental political theory that serves as the foundation for the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. A thorough critical analysis is conducted on the historical continuum of American grand strategy since 1776 through the lens of grand strategy and American political theory. Case studies of three distinct wars are included in the analysis and criticism the Mexican-American War, the Philippine-American War, and the Vietnam War. The purpose of this criticism is to evaluate the effectiveness of the means utilized by Americas grand strategy to maintain the balance between liberty and order in both domestic and foreign policy, with particular emphasis on the various foreign policy traditions that have shaped American grand strategy. Finally, the analysis and the lessons drawn from this historical criticism are applied to shape the framework for an effective American grand strategy for the 21st century.

Subject Categories:

  • Government and Political Science
  • Humanities and History
  • Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE