Capabilities Needed for the Army Future Force, 2030 & Beyond – A Tale of Two Wars

David A. Shunk
28 July 2009

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[CR note: As readers of this blog know, I don’t see much possibility of conventional war between nuclear-armed powers.  This doesn’t rule out some occasional sparring, like the P-3 incident that occurred near Hainan Island in April 2001, but I don’t understand how a nation that has nuclear weapons would let itself be conquered by conventional weapons.  One suspects that Saddam wouldn’t have.  So I certainly agree with Sir Rupert Smith that “real” war — the “province of life or death” — has disappeared among the major powers.

Still, the possibility of confrontation — sparring — remains.  How serious could it be?  Lots of healthy disagreement on that point.  In this post, Dave Shunk, an analyst who works for the Army at Ft. Monroe, VA, poses a scenario for consideration.  Frankly, I think it comes in at the high end of what might be possible, but not outside the realm of possibility.  So even though I think the scenario described here is unlikely, none of us has an infallible crystal ball, and future opponents will find ways around those scenarios we most expect.

Colonel Shunk (USAF, Ret.) contributed a piece to DNI back in January, “Lessons learned from Afghanistan.”]

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