- Hybrid Wars: The Indirect Adaptive Approach to Regime Change
Introduction 0.1: Topical Significance
“Supreme excellence consists in breaking the enemy’s resistance without fighting.” – Sun TzuREAD MORE
Over two thousand years ago, the ancient Chinese military strategist Sun Tzu realized that indirect warfare is one of the most efficient ways of fighting an enemy. It allows an opponent to defeat their adversary without directly engaging them, thereby saving themselves the resources that would have to be expended in a direct confrontation. Attacking an enemy indirectly can also bog them down and put them on the defensive, thereby making them vulnerable to other forms of attack. It also carries with it a certain opportunity cost for the defending side, since the time and resources that they spend in dealing with the indirect attack could potentially have been put to better use elsewhere. Besides the tactical advantages, there are also strategic ones as well. There may be certain constraints (e.g. alliances, military parity, etc.) that prevent one entity from directly launching hostilities against another. In this case, indirect warfare is the only option to destabilize the other.
In the current day, weapons of mass destruction and the emerging multipolar world place limits on direct confrontation between Great Powers. Even though
the US still retains the world’s strongest conventional military, the nuclear parity it shares with Russia serves as a reminder that unipolarity has its limits. Additionally, the international system is morphing in such a way that the political and physical costs of waging a conventional war against certain countries (i.e. China, Iran) are becoming too much of a burden for US decision makers, thereby making this military option less attractive. Under such circumstances, indirect warfare acquires a heightened value in strategic planning and its application can take on a variety of forms.
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The object of research is US grand strategy and the new patterned approach to regime change is the subject. The book restricts itself towards only analyzing the Color Revolution and Unconventional Warfare aspects of the Adaptive Approach, believing them to be a new theory of warfare in and of themselves. The fusion of these two can stand alone from the third step of military interference, and it will be argued that this hybrid may be more preferable than expanding the destabilization operation to Humanitarian Intervention/Responsibility to Protect. The structural events in Syria and Ukraine serve as the case studies for testing this new theory, and it will be taken for a given that the reader has some level of pre-existing knowledge about these situations. The book aims to elaborate upon and analyze the evolving US regime change template and method of warfare first described at the Moscow Conference on International Security 2014, as well as showing that the combination of Color Revolutions and Unconventional Warfare represents a new theory of state destabilization that is ready for strategic deployment all across the world.