The New Western Way of War

The New Western Way of War : Risk-Transfer War and its Crisis in Iraq

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Description

In this seminal new work, Martin Shaw, a leading expert on the sociology of war, argues that the new Western way of war is in crisis. He charts the development of a new warfare, after Vietnam, through the Falklands, the Gulf, Kosovo and Afghanistan. He argues that in the Iraq (mis)adventure (of which he provides a detailed analysis) and the War on Terror, the US has consistently flouted the key rules that enabled Western states to fight these earlier wars successfully. The results are not only political failure and a disaster in Iraq, but also a loss of credibility for the very idea of Western warfare. For Shaw, the new way of war focuses on containing risks to the lives of Western soldiers in order to minimise political and electoral risk to governments. Risk is transferred to innocent civilians, whose killing is explained away as 'accidental'. Yet the idea of managing risk is fundamentally at odds with the brutal, unpredictable nature of war. Ultimately, attempts to manage, govern and rule over the risks of war produce greater risks for those in power.
The New Western Way of War is a moral and political statement as well as a major contribution to sociology and international relations. It will make compelling reading not only for students and scholars of these disciplines, but for anyone concerned about Western political and military power, and the future for global justice.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 164 pages
  • 155 x 224 x 17mm | 398g
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0745634109
  • 9780745634104
  • 2,335,350

Back cover copy

In this seminal new work, Martin Shaw, a leading expert on thesociology of war, argues that the new Western way of war is incrisis. He charts the development of a new warfare, after Vietnam, through the Falklands, the Gulf, Kosovo and Afghanistan. He arguesthat in the Iraq (mis)adventure (of which he provides a detailedanalysis) and the War on Terror, the US has consistently floutedthe key rules that enabled Western states to fight these earlierwars successfully. The results are not only political failure and adisaster in Iraq, but also a loss of credibility for the very ideaof Western warfare.





For Shaw, the new way of war focuses on containing risks to thelives of Western soldiers in order to minimise political andelectoral risk to governments. Risk is transferred to innocentcivilians, whose killing is explained away as 'accidental'. Yet theidea of managing risk is fundamentally at odds with the brutal, unpredictable nature of war. Ultimately, attempts to manage, governand rule over the risks of war produce greater risks for those inpower.





The New Western Way of War is a moral and political statement aswell as a major contribution to sociology and internationalrelations. It will make compelling reading not only for studentsand scholars of these disciplines, but for anyone concerned aboutWestern political and military power, and the future for globaljustice.
show more

Table of contents

* List of Tables * Acknowledgements * Introduction * Chapter 1. The New Western Way of War from Vietnam to Iraq * Chapter 2. Theories of the New Western Way of War * A Western way of war * Chapter 3. The Global Surveillance Mode of Warfare * Chapter 4. Rules of Risk-Transfer War * Chapter 5. Iraq: Risk Economy of a War * Chapter 6. A Way of War in Crisis * Postscript * Notes * References and Bibliography * Index
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Review quote

"A compelling piece of engaged social science (that) does much to clarify what is at stake in contemporary warfare." International Affairs"The New Western Way of War is about new ways of interpreting war. By engaging innovative concepts like "global surveillance" or "risk-transfer", Martin Shaw offers us an intriguing glimpse of a world beyond war." Mary Kaldor, London School of Economics and Political Science"Roll over Clausewitz: in the global war on terror, politics has become a continuation of war by other means, including global surveillance, disinformation, unlawful detention, abrogation of civil liberties, faith-based violence, pervasive fear, accidental killing, and the transfer of risk to an increasingly vulnerable citizenry. Martin Shaw targets this new western way of war with the kind of discriminate intelligence and discrete passion that makes all the smart bombs and latter-day Slim Pickens riding them look very dumb indeed." James Der Derian, Brown University
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About Martin Shaw

Martin Shaw, Professor of International Relations and Politics at the University of Sussex
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Rating details

9 ratings
3.77 out of 5 stars
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3 33% (3)
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