These publications are available electronically from the JSOU Public web site, https://jsou.socom.mil in the 2013 publications section.
21st Century SOF: Toward an American Theory of Special Operations
by Harry R. Yarger
Issue Date: April 2013
In this concise JSOU monograph, Dr. Rich Yarger considers the 21st century security environment, previous work on special operations theory, and various other perspectives of SOF gleaned from his research to synthesize an American SOF school of thought. This concept, he suggests, provides the foundation on which to develop an American special operations theory for the 21st century. He offers definitions, premises, and principles that explain modern American special operations over the last 70 years, and which can serve SOF well into the future. Based on his research, Dr. Yarger also identifies major areas of concern for SOF leadership. As USSOCOM confronts the challenges offered by the 21st century and policymakers continue to look at SOF as a preferred means to address numerous and complex security issues, such a theory is essential to determine and explain the appropriate roles and missions for SOF in the 21st century.
Retooling for the Future
by Francisco Wong-Diaz
Issue Date: May2013
Dr. Francisco Wong-Diaz looks at the importance of China's strategic culture for understanding its future choices. While many see an inevitable strategic conflict of interests between the United States and China, others see the rise of China as an opportunity for the United States to collaborate on international security. At the same time, businesses see the potential for new markets. Whether the Chinese approach economic and military parity with the Unites States, however, is of secondary concern to the strategic vehicle they will use to influence regional and global behavior. Dr. Wong-Diaz analyzes the Chinese concept of unrestricted warfare (URW) to make sense of current and future trends in Chinese policy. Although URW will fundamentally challenge the United State's capability to engage China with a coherent strategy, U.S. policymakers do have an opportunity to proactively come to grips with the strategic challenges of a regionally dominant China.