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The Wonderful Trinity in a Globalized World
Swedish National Defence College, Department of Security, Strategy and Leadership (ISSL), Strategy Section.
2010 (English)In: Kungl Krigsvetenskapsakademiens Handlingar och Tidskrift, ISSN 0023-5369, no 2, 127-145 p.Article in journal (Other academic) Published
Abstract [en]

The article discusses strategic theory with particular emphasis on the lasting importance of the “wonderful trinity” as defined by Clausewitz: blind instinct, creativity, and reason. These are linked to three types of actors: the people, the general, and the government. A third trinity is the three objectives of war: the will of the enemy, his military power, and his country. The article argues that the trinity is rather flexible and can be used also in today’s “asymmetric” conflicts as a tool to increase our understanding. The word “asymmetric”, however, is often misused. To win, it has always been necessary to create asymmetry – or at least “dissymmetry” - to one’s own advantage. In order to win, strategy must define achievable, legal as well as legitimate objectives and associated ways-and-means. History shows that this is very difficult. Furthermore, the result is often not as expected. Friction and surprise make the best plans to fail; modern technology has not changed this fact. As a consequence, there is a need for strategic agility. This implies that a modern strategy needs to be responsive, flexible, and resilient. It must be thought by a “mind” that is adaptive and based on good strategic research. It must be prepared both to take on insurgents according to the formula “war amongst the people” and fight more classic wars – albeit perhaps in new ways.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2010. no 2, 127-145 p.
National Category
Other Social Sciences not elsewhere specified
Research subject
Statsvetenskap med inriktning mot strategi och säkerhetspolitik
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:fhs:diva-845OAI: oai:DiVA.org:fhs-845DiVA: diva2:337623
Note

Artikeln har även publicerats i Revue défense nationale (English edition), 2010, december, s. 32-58

Available from: 2010-08-11 Created: 2010-08-08 Last updated: 2014-06-23Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
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More styles
Language
  • de-DE
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  • fi-FI
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  • nn-NB
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  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
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