Lorenzo Zambernardi

Life and Death in the Western Way of War

  • Abstract

Informations and abstract

Keywords: Western way of war; Soldiers' death; Casualty aversion; Collateral damage.

Military thinkers and generals have devoted a great deal of attention to the logistical, technological, and operational dimensions of strategy, rather than to the cultural and social aspects of it. This article argues that in order to understand how Western states fight, a major focus on cultural variables is crucial. The article aims to show that the contemporary Western way of war is largely a reflection of the way Western societies think about life and death. Indeed, the value that Western societies attribute to their soldiers' lives is at the origin of a great cultural shift, which has contributed to produce a peculiar way of fighting. In so doing, the article also explores the military and moral shortcomings of the present Western way of war.

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