Carnegie Mellon University

Military Strategy and Doctrine

Course Number: 84-628

While major interstate warfare has markedly declined since World War II, recent events illustrate that the causes and dynamics of major war remain some of the most important topics in international politics. This course will survey how the causes, conduct, and termination of warfare have changed over time. While the focus of the course is primarily on major warfare between states, we will also cover the use of military power in civil wars, insurgencies, and proxy wars. The first part of the course addresses why wars occur and what leaders hope to achieve using military power. We will cover the merits and limitations of different explanations for why war occurs and different ethical issues in the use of force, including just war theory and protection of civilians. The second part of the course addresses the sources of warfighting effectiveness, war outcomes, and war termination and will cover a range of material and non-material factors. The final section of the course will cover how recent military, technological, social, and political changes influence what can be achieved through military power and implications for military strategy and doctrine. By the end of the course, students will have general grasp of the major analytic approaches to understanding the occurrence and dynamics of war and will have the tools to think critically about the use of military force.

Academic Year: 2023-2024
Semester(s): Fall
Units: 12
Location(s): Pittsburgh

Fall 2023
Monday and Wednesday
3:30-4:50 PM

Counts towards the following CMIST degrees:
Master of Science in International Relations and Politics: International Security concentration

Master of Information Technology Strategy: Politics and Strategy concentration