The Strategic Studies Institute is the U.S. Army's institute for geostrategic and national security research and analysis. The Strategic Studies Institute conducts strategic research and analysis to support the U.S. Army War College curricula, provides direct analysis for Army and Department of Defense leadership, and serves as a bridge to the wider strategic community.
Policy and Research Papers
The Prospects for Security Sector Reform in Tunisia: A Year After the Revolution
In the year since the revolution, Tunisia has achieved what no other Arab Spring country has managed: peaceful transition to democratic rule through national elections widely viewed to be free and fair. The legacy of the previous regime, however, remains. Dr. Querine Hanlon assesses the prospects for Security Sector Reform (SSR) in Tunisia and concludes that Tunisia’s new government faces major challenges dismantling and reorienting the mandate and institutional culture of Tunisia’s labyrinth of security institutions. Serious SSR will be critical for building trust in the new governments and its security institutions and essential if Tunisia’s transition to democratic rule is to succeed in the long term.
The American military advisor: Dealing with senior foreign officials in the Islamic world
Author Michael J. Metrinko offers information applicable to all advisors (not only military) and to all contexts (not only Muslim). The paper provides a functional example of effective strategic advising and a good snapshot of the activities of an external strategic advisor.
Hard Power and Soft Power: The Utility of Military Force as an Instrument of Policy in the 21st Century
A U.S. report by Colin Gray from the Strategic Studies Institute (SSI) based at the U.S. Army War College discussing the future of hard and soft power in military operations.
Building Better Armies: An Insider's Account of Liberia
Recent events in Mali, Libya, Syria, Afghanistan, Iraq, and elsewhere demonstrate that building professional indigenous forces is imperative to regional stability, yet few success stories exist. Liberia is a qualified “success,” and this study explores how it was achieved by the program’s chief architect. Liberia suffered a 14-year civil war replete with human rights atrocities that killed 250,000 people and displaced a third of its population. Following President Charles Taylor’s exile in 2003, the U.S. contracted DynCorp International to demobilize and rebuild the Armed Forces of Liberia and Ministry of Defense; the first time in 150 years that one sovereign nation hired a private company to raise another sovereign nation’s military. This monograph explores the theory and practice behind the successful disarmament, demobilization, and reintegration (DDR) of the legacy military and security sector reform (SSR) that built the new one. It also considers some of the benefits and difficulties of contracting out the making of militaries. This is significant since the private sector will probably participate increasingly in security sector reform. The monograph concludes with 28 concrete recommendations for practitioners and 6 recommendations for the U.S. Army on how to expand this capability. Finally, this monograph is written by a practitioner for practitioners.
Crime, Violence, and the Crisis in Guatemala: A Case Study in the Erosion of the State
This monograph examines the relationship between organized crime, internal violence, and institutional failure in Guatemala. It aims to increase awareness of this growing threat to regional security and to provide a granular, textured case study of a phenomenon that, while most striking in Guatemala, is present throughout Latin America as a whole. Organizationally, the monograph comprises three substantive sections. The first, offers an overview of the emerging security environment in Latin America, examining
organized crime as a form of irregular warfare. The second, zooms in on Guatemala, exploring the origins, nature, and effects of the current crisis in that country. The third, considers the implications for Guatemalan and U.S. policy.