Emile Simpson, author of "War From the Ground Up: Twenty-First Century Combat as Politics
", will speak on "The fusion of military and political activity in 21st Century combat
" at the Australian National University
in Canberra, 5:30pm 18 September 2013.
About the lecture:
In the Afghan conflict, and in contemporary conflicts more generally,
liberal powers and their armed forces have blurred the line between
military and political activity. The clear-cut conception that the use
of force in war serves to defeat an enemy has been challenged by
practices developed to deal with complex multi-player political
eco-systems, in which the persuasive value of an action is as important
as its military effect against an enemy. The consequent politicisation
of tactical action is not new, but is nonetheless catalysed by the
information revolution, and hence appears to point to the future of
This lecture will describe this evolution, using first hand
experience from Afghanistan, and suggest that while a fusion of military
and political activity is often necessary to be operationally effective
in modern warfare, so too does this carry risks in terms on the broader
delimitation between war and peace.
About the Speaker:
Emile Simpson served in the British Army from 2006-12 as an infantry
officer in the Royal Gurkha Rifles. He completed three tours in Southern
Afghanistan. He also served in Brunei, Nepal, and the Falkland Islands.
He previously read history at Oxford University, and was a Visiting
Defence Fellow there in 2011 on the Changing Character of War Programme.
He is the author of War From The Ground Up: Twenty-First Century Combat as Politics which has been described as 'A work of such importance that
it should be compulsory reading at every level in the military' by Sir
Michael Howard and as 'the most intelligent book on war I have read for a
very long time' according to Sir Hew Strachan. ...
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