Cover image for Sources of conflict in the 21st century : regional futures and U.S. strategy
Sources of conflict in the 21st century : regional futures and U.S. strategy
Khalilzad, Zalmay.
Publication Information:
Santa Monica, CA : Rand, 1998.
Physical Description:
xiii, 336 pages : illustrations, map ; 23 cm
General Note:
"Prepared for the United States Air Force."

"Project Air Force."

"MR-897-AF"--P. [4] of cover.
Reading Level:
1600 Lexile.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
UG633 .S68 1998 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Non circulating

On Order



The problem of global, long-range defense planning has changed enormously since the end of the Cold War. The sources and types of conflict for which the military must plan have become more varied and less predictable, the range of potential adversaries is larger, the range of military missions is more diverse, and the nature of security itself is changing on a global basis. Defense analysts must begin to consider how many of today's leading adversaries will remain adversaries, if long-standing allies will change their orientation, who will be called on to intervene and where, and if we can expect stability or chaos. This book examines current political trends and potential sources of conflict in three critical regions--Asia, the greater Middle East, and Europe and the former Soviet Union--through the year 2025. The authors describe possible alternative strategic worlds, including a projection of today's mixed political climate, a more benign world in which the great powers are at peace and are actively cooperative, and a world beset with economic, demographic, and political turmoil. Additional chapters discuss regional trends and their meaning for strategy and planning. Originally intended to serve Air Force long-range planning needs, the findings are relevant to broader ongoing debates and should be of interest to a wide foreign and security policy audience.

Reviews 1

Choice Review

A product of the RAND Corporation's long-running Project Air Force, this useful book is aimed primarily at defense planners, whose task, it is argued, has become more difficult since the Cold War's end. The editors and other contributors attempt to ease the plight of their intended audience by, essentially, bounding the range of strategic uncertainty with which it is confronted. In "Overview of the Future Security Environment," contributors advance nine propositions about the evolving world order and the role of the US in that order, and they develop three alternative scenarios of future worlds. The regional surveys are limited to Asia, the Greater Middle East, and Europe and the former Soviet Union (or what might be labeled "Greater Europe"). Asia-Pacific is thought to be "poised to become the new strategic center of gravity in international politics." Trends, "drivers of change," and possible conflicts in the Northeast Asian, Southeast Asian, and South Asian "security complexes" are highlighted. Similar serviceable surveys of the Greater Middle East and Greater Europe follow. What it all means for the US Air Force is the subject of a concluding chapter. For faculty, advanced undergraduates and graduate students, and researchers and practitioners. A. L. Ross; Naval War College

Table of Contents

Prefacep. iii
Acknowledgmentsp. xiii
Chapter 1 Introductionp. 1
Chapter 2 Overview of the Future Security Environmentp. 7
Chapter 3 Sources of Conflict in Asiap. 43
Chapter 4 Sources of Conflict in the Greater Middle Eastp. 171
Chapter 5 Sources of Conflict in Europe and the Former Soviet Unionp. 231
Chapter 6 Conclusions and Implications for the U.S. Air Force of 2025p. 307
Appendix: Selected Scenariosp. 315