Great Content, Rotten Pricing, Free Options Online
October 2, 2010
Antulio Joseph Echevarria
I have known the author for many years, and my own work, monographs for the Strategic Studies Institute where he has been the Director of Research, benefited considerably from his mature and measured editing. His most helpful work for me is his piece on “The American Way of Battle,” a brilliant analysis of how the US Government has lost the ability to do strategy (“strategic decrepitude” is when you confuse ideology, body counts, and powerpoint briefings with being a strategy) and instead obsessed on training, equipping, and organizing to do battles–and then our less well educated officers call the Taliban cowards, unmindful of the fact that they have held a “modern” armored force at stalemate for a decade wearing robes and sandals and using old single-shot weapons. Viet-Nam deja vu.
This is an important book and I consider it an outrage that it is being offered for such a high price. I could not find it easily at the Strategic Studies Institute but believe it to be available free online there. Certainly all the rest of this author’s many great contributions to strategic thought are free online there, as well as those of Colin Gray, Max Manwaring, Steve Metz, and many others.
This book should be offered to the public in soft copy at no more than $29. Until that happens, go find a free copy online, and recognize that the source site, Strategic Studies Institute, offers everything they produce at taxpayer expense free online. Search for the author’s name and enjoy most of what he offers at no additional cost.
At Phi Beta Iota the Public Intelligence Blog, where I have more discretion, you can see all of my reviews on Strategy, on Force Structure, on Sorrows of Empire, etcetera, easily grouped (I read in 98 categories, all non-fiction). All my reviews lead back to the Amazon Page, and to my often buried contributions, should you wish to vote or comment. I respond to comments daily. At my review of this book there, you will find a link to Dr. Echevarria’s SSI Home Page, where his SSI contributions (not those external to SSI) can be accessed free.