Category Archives: Publication

Att leda markoperationer – en essäsamling

(NEW ESSAY COLLECTION ON “LEADING LAND OPERATIONS” in Swedish)

Övlt Daniel Rydberg och jag har sammanställt en volym med 29 essäer på temat ledning av markoperationer. Dessa är skrivna av officerare på högre officersprogrammet i samband med en kurs i markoperationer som Övlt Rydberg och jag ansvarade för (”Ledning av markoperationer”). Essäerna berör det övergripande temat ”offensivt/defensivt tänkande, människan och manövern”.

Introduktionen som även innehåller en sammanfattning av kapitlen kan du läsa här: “Att leda markoperationer”.

Mer information om volymen: http://www.diva-portal.org/smash/record.jsf?pid=diva2%3A1351839 .

Citera:
Weissmann, Mikael, and Daniel Rydberg, eds. Att leda markoperationer : En essäsamling. Stockholm: Marksektionen, Försvarshögskolan, 2019.

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Practical Examination and the Examination of Practice

New article on Practical Examination and the Examination of Practice when teaching war studies to cadets and officers (and others) in The Royal Swedish Academy of War Sciences Proceedings and Journal. In Swedish, but if interested send a message.

Abstract:
The ability to lead armed combat is central to an officer. It is clear that the military professionis about more than possessing theoretical knowledge. Thus, in order to achieve an educationalprogram that includes the skills and abilities of the military profession there is a need to lookbeyond traditional written examination and apply practical examination in various forms.In this article we argue that while all practice can and should be examined through practicalexamination, not everything that is practically examined has to be practice. More specifically,this article will focus on the possibilities and limitations with practical examination. Focuswill be on the education of officers within the context of war studies. The article approachesthe issue on the basis of the legal framework for higher education in Sweden, research onteaching and learning in higher education and practice at the Swedish Defence University. Theoverall purpose is to understand practical examination with regard to what is allowed, howit is done with judicial security, and how it can be done in practice. The article also discusseswhat should be practically examined and how this should be done.

Full text här: http://fhs.diva-portal.org/smash/get/diva2:1343639/FULLTEXT01.pdf

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Hybrid warfare and hybrid threats today and tomorrow: towards an analytical framework

I just published a new article in Baltic Defence College’s Journal on Baltic Security – HYBRID WARFARE AND HYBRID THREATS TODAY AND TOMORROW: TOWARDS AN ANALYTICAL FRAMEWORK.

This article first traces the origin of hybrid warfare and the label game surrounding the concept, asking whether it is merely old wine in a new bottle, and if so, whether it is still a useful concept. It is found that while being old wine in new bottles, it is still a good wine well worth drinking. While there is not much new in the concept itself, it is a useful tool to think about past wars, today’s wars and the wars of the future. Thereafter, this paper analyses how hybrid warfare and hybrid threats are to be understood in the context of peace, conflict and war. It is shown how hybrid warfare and threats fit into our traditional understanding of conflict dynamics.

Full text (OPEN ACCESS): https://doi.org/10.2478/jobs-2019-0002

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Special Issue: Understanding Power (Shift) in East AsIA

Just published: Special Issue in Asian Perspective on Power, Narratives, and the Role of Third Parties: Understanding Power (Shift) in East Asia with Mikael Weissmann and Mingjiang Li as guest editors.

Find the articles on https://muse.jhu.edu/issue/40440/print .

Introduction to the Special Issue [SUBMITTED COPY]
Mikael Weissmann, Mingjiang Li
pp. 215-221
DOI: 10.1353/apr.2019.0008

Understanding Power (Shift) in East Asia: The Sino-US Narrative Battle about Leadership in the South China Sea [OPEN ACCESS]
Mikael Weissmann
pp. 223-248
DOI: 10.1353/apr.2019.0009 (Open Access)

China’s “Belt and Road” in Southeast Asia: Constructing the Strategic Narrative in Singapore
Alice D. Ba
pp. 249-272
DOI: 10.1353/apr.2019.0010

China’s Economic Power in Asia: The Belt and Road Initiative and the Local Guangxi Government’s Role
Mingjiang Li
pp. 273-295
DOI: 10.1353/apr.2019.0011

Return to Geopolitics: The Changes in Japanese Strategic Narratives
Hidekazu Sakai
pp. 297-322
DOI: 10.1353/apr.2019.0012

The Relationship between Narratives and Security Practices: Pushing the Boundaries of Military Instruments in Japan
Petter Y. Lindgren, Wrenn Yennie Lindgren
pp. 323-348
DOI: 10.1353/apr.2019.0013

Contending Narratives of the International Order: US/Chinese Discursive Power and Its Effects on the UK
Rex Li
pp. 349-385
DOI: 10.1353/apr.2019.0014

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Explaining the offensive bias in military tactical thinking

New article with LtCol (ret) Peter Ahlström in Defence Studies that explores why the offensive dominates military tactical thinking. Our article, “Mirror, mirror on the wall, who is the most offensive of them all? – Explaining the offensive bias in military tactical thinking” is published open access, so anyone can download the article free:
https://doi.org/10.1080/14702436.2019.1599287 .

Abstract:
This article explores why the offensive predominates military tactical thinking. With survey results showing an offensive bias among 60 per cent of senior Swedish officers and as many as 80 per cent in the case of the army, it is clear that this is not just a problem of the past but is equally relevant today. The article asks why there is a tendency to perceive and understand offensive tactics as the preferred choice and the way to conduct battle that should be encouraged and preferred. Drawing on existing research and the findings of a pilot study, ten propositions for why the offensive bias exists are tested using a mixed-method approach. Based on the findings, the article develops a model to understand why the offensive dominates military tactical thinking. It is found that the two key constitutive factors behind the offensive bias are military culture and education. These factors most directly and profoundly influence an officer’s identity, perceptions, and thinking. Military culture and education, in turn, work as a prism for four other factors: military history, the theory and principles of war, doctrine and TTPs, and psychological factors.

KEYWORDS: Militarycult of the offensiveattackoffensivetactical thinkingtacticseducationmilitary cultureSwedenarmy

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Op-ed on how to manage China and BRI

Today I am co-authoring an op-ed in SvD Debatt , ”Sverige bör få EU att ställa tydliga krav på Kina”, on how Sweden ought to handle China’s global ambitions. We are arguing that there is a need for a common ground among Swedish actors and to develop a shared position within the European Union and not least to set clear requirements. This is of course not easy, but as China’s ambitions will remain a fact of life there is a need to adapt.

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Will Trump make China great again? The belt and road initiative and international order

“Will Trump make China great again? The belt and road initiative and international order” – new article in Chatham House’s International Affairs with Astrid H. M. Nordin) – full text on  https://doi.org/10.1093/ia/iix242 

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Summary of BRI report published Hong Kong Trade Development Council

Summary of my report  on Sweden’s approach to China’s Belt and Road Initiative published by Hong Kong Trade Development Council. See http://china-trade-research.hktdc.com/business-news/article/The-Belt-and-Road-Initiative/Sweden-s-approach-to-China-s-Belt-and-Road-Initiative/obor/en/1/1X3CGF6L/1X0ACL54.htm 

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Sweden’s approach to China’s Belt and Road Initiative: Still a glass half-empty

New paper on Sweden and the Belt and Road Initiative just out: Sweden’s approach to China’s Belt and Road Initiative: Still a glass half-empty (UI Paper, No.1 2017 with Elin Rappe).

Executive summary
In 2013 China’s President Xi Jinping launched the “One Belt, One Road” (OBOR) initiative, later renamed the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), which involves China undertaking to make infrastructure investments worth billions of US dollars in the countries along the old Silk Road connecting China with Europe. While commonly seen as an infrastructure initiative aimed at strengthening the Chinese economy, it is also a political project with far-reaching strategic aims.

This UI Brief outlines how China has approached the BRI with Sweden, how Sweden has responded and the perceptions of major Swedish stakeholders. It finds that Swedish officials are often highly cautious, maintaining a wait-and see policy. While also cautious, members of the business community are cautiously optimistic and have been more actively following BRIrelated developments, seeking out avenues for potential business. The actual impact of BRI in Sweden, however, is so far very limited.

The Brief concludes that Sweden’s approach to BRI has been too reactive and too passive. It argues that both the government and the business community need to engage more actively with the BRI in order to maximize its possible benefits. To this end, a national strategy is needed that includes the government and the business sector. Better coordination is also needed between government agencies and to link existing intra-governmental cooperation with the business community. Their importance cannot be overemphasized as the BRI is a political project, not an idealistic free-market endeavour.

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