Document Type


Publication Date

Summer 2018


There is a saying that politicians and generals are always fighting the last war, which is emphasized when the weapons and characteristics of warfare are changing rapidly. However, if this is true, it is often not due to an inability to learn lessons from previous conflicts, but to “overlearn” or overcompensate for the failures and experiences of the past. In reality, this is not a learning problem but one of forming poor implications from historical events, which leads to poor applications of doctrine the next time around. The DOD now acknowledges that warfare has extended into cyberspace, and it is my central thesis that the military often suffers from a lack of meaningful conversation concerning the problems it faces in that domain. The lack of discourse is due partly to poorly adopted metaphors and analogies pulled from other domains of warfare and historical examples, and in general to a lack of rigorous strategic framing of the problem and its potential solutions.


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[*] Author note: At the time of publication Capt Isaac Nacita was a graduate student at Air Force Institute of Technology.

Source Publication

Air & Space Power Journal