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Another Bloody Century: Future Warfare [Hardcover]

Colin S. Gray
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

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Book Description

14 July 2005

Many nations, peoples and special interest groups believe that violence will advance their cause. Warfare has changed greatly since the Second World War; it continued to change during the late 20th century and this process is stll accelerating. Political, technological, social and religious forces are shaping the future of warfare, but most western armed forces have yet to evolve significantly from the cold war era when they trained to resist a conventional invasion by the Warsaw Pact. America is now the only superpower, but its dominance is threatened by internal and external factors. The world's most hi-tech weaponry seems helpless in the face of determined guerrilla fighters not afraid to die for their beliefs.

Professor Colin Gray has advised governments on both sides of the Atlantic and in ANOTHER BLOODY CENTURY, he reveals what sort of conflicts will affect our world in the years to come. Si vis pacem, para bellum.

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 440 pages
  • Publisher: Orion (14 July 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0297846272
  • ISBN-13: 978-0297846277
  • Product Dimensions: 23.5 x 16.6 x 4.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,073,107 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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The sooner this excellent book is read by Western policy-makers, the better. (DAILY TELEGRAPH)

[Colin Gray's] excellent book should be required reading for anyone interested in promoting our safetly and prosperity in the years ahead. It offers many wise words and thoughtful speculations about what the threats to the next few generations might be. (Max Hastings THE SUNDAY TELEGRAPH)

Gray should be read, not least because of his own personal importance... This is the sort of advice he gives to the people that shape our world. His analyses become theirs. Read on and tremble. (SCOTTISH LEGION NEWS)

an important work that should be in every library of military affairs and international relations. (Michael Howard TLS)

Book Description

How the wars of the near future will be fought and who will win them.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 'Rights only exists between equals in power..' 31 Oct 2010
War will not dissapear in the coming century. It will not be erased by the goodness of humankind or the mutual respect that we're all supposed to have for one anothers cultures. It will expand and become even more virolent as both Western power declines and Eastern power particularly Asian [China, India,] moves in too fill the gap. Even Space will become militarized according to Colin S Gray's hefty if intriguing book.

A depressing read but it really says that this is how it ever was between humans. One group dominates militarily and culturally before decline and fall beset them then someone else comes along to do pretty much the same. Determinists might enjoy a lot of this book but those with more humanists ideals will find little joy here.

Warfare is almost always political in it's outset merely achieving through violence a political goal that the aggressors have all agreed upon is necessary whether that be territorial gain or defending against a percieved invader. The politics always come first, then the warfare so remember that when our leaders come up with their excuses over Iraq and I suspect Afghanistan too.
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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful
All in all an excellent book, well written and covering all of the major facts. For those who want to see beyond many of the current fads in military thinking - from 4GW to Effects Based and Network Centric Warfare - an excellent book. Coling Gray covers the basics of Clauswitzian Theory, and constantly brings us back to the fact that the future is not yet determined. We should, he argues, prepare for the unexpected, whilst accepting that history does provide us the best tools to analyse what we see today. Colin Gray does have a tendancy to use long words when short ones would do the job, but this does not detract from the book.

For those soon to attend their MA(C) module (you know who you are if you know what I'm talking about!) then it should be recommended reading. Covers some of the syllabus and much more beyond.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars War Might Not Change, But Might Politics? 20 May 2010
My main interest is international relations, but I thought I would have a go at reading something by Colin Gray to expand my knowledge of strategic issues. Gray is a well known strategic theorist, known in particular for his view that war is an intrinsic part of international relations and his defence of a nuclear war-fighting strategy. Yes, war-fighting, not deterrence. So, not a writer known for shying away from controversy or for sugaring the pill. Indeed, hard headed and even bluntly pessimistic analysis is what you get with Gray's treatment of future warfare. War, he asserts, will remain with us in future and, furthermore, the nature of war will not change. The way in which war is fought may change in certain respects: new technologies promise to open up space and cyberspace as new battlefields; terrorists might get hold of nuclear weapons; network-centric warfare may place information at the centre of any conflict. But according to Gray, war remains war. Drawing on the Prussian military philosopher Carl von Clausewitz, Gray emphasizes that war remains a duel between adversaries locked in a contest of wills, a conflict characterised by fear, danger, exertion and uncertainty. No technological advance, no new kind of adversary can change this. Gray is particularly compelling in his argument that tactics, the achievement of purely military goals on the battlefield, cannot replace strategy, the use of force to advance political objectives. He consistently criticises US defence planners for confusion on this issue and indeed, with hindsight one can point to just such problems in the 'strategy' that gave us the Iraq debacle. It isn't hard to evaluate Al-Qaeda in a similar fashion: for all the damage they have inflicted, what have they actually acheived? Read more ›
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.1 out of 5 stars  9 reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A realist's conversation on the future 28 Aug 2010
By Trav Hallen - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
A great book written in the form of a frank discussion on what the future history of warfare will be. I would strongly recommend this for all interested in international relations, politics or military operations. Though it can be confronting at times, it offers all who read it a chance to re-examine their ideas of what the future will hold.

The book aims to look at the future through the lens of history in order to understand what may be the shape of things to come. Gray clearly states his intellectual position as a realist and the case he presents, though compelling, may challenge the sensibilities of liberal internationalists.

What I enjoyed most about this book is the almost conversational style with which it was written. This writing style creates the impression that Gray is actually sitting down with the reader to have a frank discussion about the subject. Such a style is useful in getting the reader to take in what is being argued and form their own opinion on the subject.

In all, a book well worth reading.
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must read - provocatively stimulating, compellingly argued... 15 Nov 2008
By Urey W. Patrick - Published on
This is a theoretical/philosophical/logical/historical/pragmatic look at war and warfare to come, and is one of the most engaging books I have read in quite some time. The author has a superb, and often wickedly delightful sense of humor that emerges unexpectedly throughout his text - he is particularly unkind to the multi-national, soft and fuzzy make peace not war can't we all be friends crowd. The book is worth buying just for the final two chapters - The Control of War and A Warlike Future - but I strongly recommend you read all the preceding chapters, nevertheless. Gray lays out, and eviscerates, the various grand theories of war - also those for controlling and eliminating war - and covers factors that do in fact limit war, if unevenly and unreliably. Throughout I found myself thinking how much I wish I had written THAT, or how intellectually satisfying it is to learn THAT.

There is much to be learned here. Very satisfying, very stimulating, very provocative of serious thought...
6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Explores the idea that while war is ever changing, its basics remain the same 22 Jun 2006
By Midwest Book Review - Published on
ANOTHER BLOODY CENTURY: FUTURE WARFARE explores the idea that while war is ever changing, its basics remain the same: it'll always be with us, it has an unchanging nature and character, it's driven by politics, and it embraces strategic surprises. That said, ANOTHER BLOODY CENTURY narrows the focus to strategic prediction's problems, the fallacies inherent in the idea of a foreseeable future when warfare is involved, and futuristic types of warfare mechanisms which argues that in practice war is a controlled process. Any who would understand warfare's evolution and future must consider the basic tenants observed in ANOTHER BLOODY CENTURY: FUTURE WARFARE, which looks under the hype for the realities.

Diane C. Donovan

California Bookwatch
5.0 out of 5 stars Realistic View of Future War 16 Aug 2013
By Howard G. Anders Jr - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A sound analysis presented with dry wit. Paints a somewhat dismal, if realistic view of warfare in the coming decades.
5.0 out of 5 stars A good way to understand strategy and war in the present Century 3 Jun 2013
By Guillermo Lafferriere - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
In fact, this book is a very different point of view regarding war in this Century. With great historic knowledge, the author give tips to be cautious before theorist that argue inter state war has not future. This book should be read by people interested in Foreign Affairs and top military leaders an Defence planers.
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