Cover: Perspectives on the Study of Comparative Military Doctrines

Perspectives on the Study of Comparative Military Doctrines

Published 1973

by Arnold L. Horelick


Download Free Electronic Document

FormatFile SizeNotes
PDF file 0.8 MB

Use Adobe Acrobat Reader version 10 or higher for the best experience.


Purchase Print Copy

 Format Price
Add to Cart Paperback17 pages $20.00

A conference paper discussing the diversity of current political-military doctrines. Seldom is strategic doctrine systematically articulated or formally codified, and the most vital issues are kept ambiguous. The objective of deterring nuclear war is in many ways inimical to war-fighting capability. No state today can insure itself and its allies against all plausible threats; those with the most alliances are the hardest-pressed for coherent doctrine. A nation's domestic history influences its perception of threat, as do national style, circumstances, and powerful leaders. Among the doctrines today, Israel's is unique in being a nonnuclear war-fighting capability, and also because of its flexibility and dynamism. Israeli victories demonstrate the soundness of Israeli doctrine; but the nonoccurrence of nuclear war offers no proof that the deterrence strategies used are sound and effective. Since deterrence can only be judged by its failure, let us pray it will never be put to the test. (To be published in a 1974 book, [Comparative Defense Policy].)

This report is part of the RAND paper series. The paper was a product of RAND from 1948 to 2003 that captured speeches, memorials, and derivative research, usually prepared on authors' own time and meant to be the scholarly or scientific contribution of individual authors to their professional fields. Papers were less formal than reports and did not require rigorous peer review.

This document and trademark(s) contained herein are protected by law. This representation of RAND intellectual property is provided for noncommercial use only. Unauthorized posting of this publication online is prohibited; linking directly to this product page is encouraged. Permission is required from RAND to reproduce, or reuse in another form, any of its research documents for commercial purposes. For information on reprint and reuse permissions, please visit

RAND is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.