by Abraham D. Sofaer
December 05, 2013
Efforts to limit the flexibility available to the US to develop a grand strategy based on advanced technologies, relatively inexpensive methods, and selective engagements may ultimately fail, but should be taken seriously. A strong tendency exists that disfavors relatively inexpensive interventions. That requires political and military planners to take into account that grand strategies based on the view that the US will be able to take full advantage of its claimed technological superiority, and limit its interventions as it sees fit, may be mistaken. Military interventions are likely to be more expensive than might be feasible due to legal or ethical limitations. The US remains free to argue that its “inherent” right of self-defense cannot be limited by legal or ethical arguments that have not been universally accepted. But grand strategists should more carefully consider the potential impact of such arguments to ensure they are making realistic assumptions.