Small Wars Journal

SWJ Book Review

SWJ Book Review: Legion Versus Phalanx: The Epic Struggle for Infantry Supremacy in the Ancient World by Myke Cole SWJED Sat, 03/23/2019 - 11:39am
Myke Cole has written a new book covering ancient Hellenistic phalanx and Roman legion warriors. The author’s work focused on Hellenistic and Roman military unit formations with a tactical analysis. Cole’s work spans a time period from approximately the 3rd through the 2nd century BC battlefields with a discipline focus. Cole’s main argument focuses on the tactical success and failure of the phalanx and legion military units.
A Path to Resilience & Virtue: A SWJ Book Review of How to Think Like a Roman Emperor by Donald Robertson SWJED Tue, 03/19/2019 - 8:07am
I was blessed to be introduced to Stoic philosophy during high school. While I struggled to fully understand Stoicism as a teenager, I realized its deep value. Stoicism is a philosophy uniquely suited to Soldiers and military leaders. When I deployed to Iraq in 2009, I took a single book with me from home. The "Meditations" by Marcus Aurelius was not only useful to myself but was passed around my platoon and inspired many of my Soldiers. It shouldn’t be a surprise as this text has been used by countless military leaders for millennia. If my sons ever march off to war, I will hand them the copy of the "Meditations" along with another book that might prove to be an even more powerful introduction to Stoicism. Donald Robertson recently composed a book called "How to Think Like a Roman Emperor". It is a unique book that I wish would be given to every junior leader in our ranks.
SWJ Book Review: "Mexico’s Illicit Drug Networks and the State Reaction" SWJED Sat, 02/09/2019 - 12:39am
What makes illicit networks resilient and why do states choose to attack some more aggressively over others? These are the questions the author—Nathan P. Jones—investigates and attempts to answer in "Mexico’s Illicit Drug Networks and the State Reaction". Dr. Jones is a non-resident scholar in drug policy and Mexico studies at the Baker Institute at Rice University in Texas and an Assistant Professor in Security Studies, Sam Houston State University.

A Woman Warrior Ahead of the Times: A SWJ Book Review of An English Woman-Sergeant in the Serbian Army by Flora Sandes

What would become the book "An English Woman-Sergeant in the Serbian Army" is a collection of journal entries and letters that she wrote between 1915-1916 when she joined the ambulance of the Second Infantry Regiment of the Serbian Army.

About the Author(s)

SWJ-El Centro Book Review: "El Narco: Inside Mexico’s Criminal Insurgency"

Mexico’s cartels have become a global problem. From the manufacture and sale of drugs, to human trafficking, turf wars, among other criminal acts, narcos have an international footprint. Ioan Grillo’s "El Narco: Inside Mexico’s Criminal Insurgency", is an account of how Mexico’s cartels were once drug smugglers who later radically transformed into “paramilitary death squads”

About the Author(s)

The Leading Edge of Aviation Warfare Innovation: A SWJ Book Review of Aeroplanes and Dirigibles of War by Frederick A. Talbot SWJED Tue, 10/23/2018 - 5:27am
About five years ago, I stumbled upon the audiobook of ‘Aeroplanes and Dirigibles of War’ by Frederick A. Talbot while searching through the free audiobooks available on Librivox.org. While at the time this book was written it might have been more closely aligned to the popular mechanics genre, it is one of the most fascinating military history books I have encountered.
SWJ Book Review – “Underground Warfare” SWJED Fri, 09/21/2018 - 12:34am
Tunnel warfare is now becoming a contemporary concern as seen in its use by AQIM (al-Qaeda in the Islamic Magreb) in Mali, and by Hamas for smuggling, terrorism, and increasingly as a means of urban warfare in Gaza, Syria, and Iraq. Among other things, underground warfare is likely to merge with urban operations and proliferate in the megacity battles of tomorrow. Richemond-Barak does an excellent job of building a foundation for addressing these tactical, operational, and strategic challenges.

SWJ Book Review – Grand Strategy by Peter Layton

The book contributes to the conceptual development and understanding of the idea of grand strategy. Making grand strategy practically applicable remains one of the major contributions of the book. However, in trying to assist busy people to get practical benefit, the book simplified grand strategy as ‘problem solving method’ but all the objectives sought need not necessarily be problems.

About the Author(s)

SWJ Book Review: The Fighters by C.J. Chivers SWJED Mon, 09/10/2018 - 1:27am
C.J. Chivers, a Pulitzer Prize winning journalist, follows six people in their journey through the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. He brings to life the stories of ordinary Soldiers, Sailors, and Marines through prose that reads like a novel.
SWJ Book Review – “Danger 79er: The Life and Times of Lieutenant General James F. Hollingsworth” SWJED Wed, 05/09/2018 - 12:48am
James H. Willbanks’ biography Danger 79er of General James Francis Hollingsworth (Holly) is a welcomed addition to our understanding important U.S. generals. From his Texas roots, through what became Texas A&M, WWII, Korea, and Vietnam (with points in-between), we read how events and people shaped his perceptions and Army career, especially two other armor officers, General George S. Patton and, later, General Creighton Abrams.