Clausewitz as an early theoretician of hybrid warfare
Hybrid warfare (Russia, now the US, too) or the comprehensive approach (NATO) seems to be the most advanced strategy at present. It is a political and strategic challenge in the first place and the creative combination of regular as well as irregular, linear as well as non-linear approaches is one of the main criteria of its nature. Hybrid warfare is related to a fundamental change in the social cohesion of the Western societies, the rise of the newly industrialized nations as well as the dissolution of nearly all boundaries, which I label liquid globalization (Herberg-Rothe). Due to the extension of the traditional domains of military action (air, land, sea) to cyber space, communicative and outer space as well as their integration into one domain as the result of the acceleration of communication, we need to question all our traditional thinking in military affairs. Clausewitz said that war is an act of force to compel our enemies to do our will. An adaption would be to say, war is also an act of violence in order not to be compelled to do the will of your opponent (Herberg-Rothe, Clausewitz’s puzzle, OUP 2007). The Clausewitz problem for today is how to conduct limited war and military operations in borderless domains and networks, a problem which was for Clausewitz unthinkable, because he related limitedwarfare to limited goals und “absolute” warfare to a revolution in political circumstances.

Andreas Herberg-Rothe, Dr. phil. habil., is a senior lecturer at the university of applied sciences, Fulda (since 2009) and formerly at the Institute for Social Sciences, Humboldt-University Berlin (up to 2012). He is teaching and doing research in the department of “Violence and Peace in World Society”. He was an associate of the Oxford Leverhulme Programme “The changing character of War”  (2004-2005) and  a visiting fellow at the London School of Economics and Political Science, Centre for International Studies (2005-2006).

He is the author of “Clausewitz’s puzzle (Oxford University Press 2007). In July 2014  he has convened an international symposium in Tokyo about “Lessons from 1914 for the rise of Asia” and published the proceedings in 2015. He published his latest book together with Key-young Son: Order wars and floating balance. How the rising powers are reshaping our world view in the twenty-first century. New York: Routledge.
Date: 27 November 2019, 17:15 (Wednesday, 7th week, Michaelmas 2019)
Venue: All Souls - Wharton Room
Speaker: Dr Andreas Herberg-Rothe (Huchschule Fulda)
Organiser: Changing Character of War Centre (CCW)
Organiser contact email address:
Host: Dr Rob Johnson (CCW, Oxford)
Booking required?: Not required
Cost: Free
Audience: Public
Editor: Elizabeth Robson