Content

Sarandis Papadopoulos, Peter Swartz’s Republic of Letters: Recent Works on the U.S. Navy and Strategy in:

Sebastian Bruns, Sarandis Papadopoulos (Ed.)

Conceptualizing Maritime & Naval Strategy, page 155 - 178

Festschrift for Captain Peter M. Swartz, United States Navy (ret.)

1. Edition 2020, ISBN print: 978-3-8487-5753-4, ISBN online: 978-3-8452-9915-0, https://doi.org/10.5771/9783845299150-155

Series: ISPK Seapower Series, vol. 3

Bibliographic information
Peter Swartz’s Republic of Letters: Recent Works on the U.S. Navy and Strategy1 Sarandis Papadopoulos This essay aims to function on two levels. The first examines how Peter Swartz prompted a scholarly discussion about U.S. Navy strategy from a diverse group—both intellectually and internationally—of young scholars. For the authors examined here, Swartz served as mentor and a literal source for the doctoral dissertations written by them. The second line of effort seeks to generalize about what maritime strategy signified, identifying themes prevalent in these works to better understand what using the sea, and naval power, meant. In that light this “Republic of Letters” also shows what maritime thought can mean in the future. As Swartz himself has written, the prime purpose for creating American naval power is to provide options for U.S. presidents.2 Allowing for national distinctions in leadership, the same applies to all naval powers. To sharpen his point in the form of a question, what solutions did the Navy (as a “means”) offer to solve national and international problems (the “ends”)? The three works considered here were completed as dissertations between 2010 and 2016. The authors, and their published works as used here with dates of completion, are: • Larissa Forster, Influence Without Boots on the Ground: Seaborne Crisis Response (2013) • Peter D. Haynes, Toward a New Maritime Strategy: American Naval Thinking in the Post-Cold War Era (2015) • Sebastian Bruns, U.S. Naval Strategy and National Security: The Evolution of American Maritime Power (2018) 1 All opinions expressed here are those of the author, and should not be construed as representing the positions of the Department of the Navy, Department of Defense or the United States government. 2 Peter M. Swartz, “American Naval Policy, Strategy, Plans, and Operations in the Second Decade of the Twenty-First Century,” in Routledge Handbook of Naval Strategy and Security, ed. by Joachim Krause and Sebastian Bruns (London, New York: Routledge, 2016) 232. 155 Most interestingly, given their works’ focus on the U.S. Navy, the authors studied here are multinational: one Swiss (Forster), a German (Bruns), and an American (Haynes). Students of naval affairs are rare on both sides of the Atlantic. As this volume reveals, Peter’s research and writing, chiefly created to inform the U.S. Navy’s Pentagon staff, commonly called OP- NAV, managed to support the scholarship of non-Americans, even one from a land-locked European nation. It also provides a guide for how the lack of a strategy hindered the navy during a period of political indeterminacy. Some theory needs consideration for context. Fundamentally, does strategy, and the documents written to enunciate it, matter? The answer is distinct from the interactions which classic wartime strategy assumes in historical literature. The approaches taken here instead represent Cold War or post-1989 thinking about what navies can or might do. It is also stands apart from the intellectual value drawing students to study strategy, which these works, and others represented in this volume, embody.3 As part of the human experience, these students found naval strategy worth addressing through their doctoral work, signaling its interest. Moreover, strategy is fundamentally difficult to create, unlike more engineering-oriented military problem solving at the operational or tactical levels, especially for naval forces which are more disconnected from the public imagination than armies and air forces.4 At best, strategic thought unifies organizational or national effort, adds coherence to explanations of intent, and creates trustworthy behavior over the longer term.5 Ultimately, then, what this essay seeks to ask is did written U.S. Navy strategy make a difference? In answering this question, we can look at the roots of Peter Swartz’s durable oeuvre. When a relatively junior officer in the 1970s, the U.S. Navy publicly clashed with its own political leadership (the administration of President Jimmy Carter and Defense Secretary Harold Brown), and in parallel was internally divided on wartime operational plans, whether to de- 3 Four more dissertations are not included, although they reflect Swartz’s influence and inform my own thinking: the works of Amund Lundesgaard, Michael Haas, Jeremy Stöhs and Steve Wills are all presented in this volume. 4 Lawrence Freedman, Strategy (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013), 609; see also General George Meade at The Lehrman Institute, “The Generals and Admirals: George Meade (1815-1872)” (n. d.), http://www.mrlincolnswhitehouse.org/resident s-visitors/the-generals-and-admirals/generals-admirals-george-meade-1815-1872/. 5 Peter Harris, “Confusion, Unforced Errors, and the Costs of Having No Strategy,” Real Clear World, 5 December 2019), https://www.realclearworld.com/articles/2019 /12/05/confusion_unforced_errors_and_the_costs_of_having_no_strategy_113123. html. Sarandis Papadopoulos 156 fend convoy routes to Europe or to strike directly at such a conflict’s homeland, the Soviet Union.6 Given such strategic disagreements, creating coherence of thought, and matching those ideas by building a fleet, properly crewed and equipped, to execute them, was essential. In addition, the Navy’s unstated but generally accepted service cultural mindset, is dominated by a “presentist” OPNAV and devoted to technological solutions rather than to strategic thought.7 These elements were the challenges Swartz confronted as a member of the Navy’s strategy community a generation ago. After service in South Vietnam, Swartz’s Pentagon work mainly kept him focused on explaining how the Navy would prepare for or fight a war. His strategy efforts therefore sought to discipline OPNAV officers (who planned the organization), their programs (what the Navy physically bought), and Navy messages (what it said), to create a coherent whole.8 It is worth a student’s notice to realize that a modern navy, in particular the U.S. Navy, must be prepared to respond to political questions with clarity, especially with respect to its budget needs. Some may criticize this strict linking of writing strategy to an explicit “means, ways and ends” construct, yet the American government budget process is where all high-level choices and decisions are made, including about strategy and its execution.9 For over four decades it also was the universe in which Swartz’s work played a role. As an example, and to unpack the second of these disciplinary responsibilities, consider U.S. shipbuilding. Since 2002, American Federal law has mandated the Navy annually report to Congress, as part of the Defense 6 Edward C. Keefer, Harold Brown: Offsetting the Soviet Military Challenge, 1977-1981 (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Publishing Office, 2017) 232-240. 7 John Kuehn, “U.S. Navy Cultural Transformations, 1945-2017,” 7-9, unpublished paper in author’s possession (n. d.). Italics in original. See also Thomas C. Hone, Power and Change: The Administrative History of the Office of the Chief of Naval Operations 1946-1986 (Washington, D.C.: Department of the Navy, 1989), 104-105. 8 Peter M. Swartz, U.S. Navy Capstone Strategy, Policy, Vision and Concept Documents: What to consider before you write one (Alexandria, VA: The Center for Naval Analyses, 2009), 3. 9 The origins of this approach lie in Samuel Huntington, “National Policy for a Transoceanic Navy,” in U.S. Naval Institute Proceedings vol. 80/5/615 (May 1954), 483-493. See also Andrew C. Webb, Rethinking Strategy: Art Lykke and the development of Ends, Ways, Means Theory of Strategy, MA thesis (Ft. Leavenworth, KS, 14 June 2019). The author prefers ends and means in Carl von Clausewitz, On War (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1984) Book II, Chapter 2. Peter Swartz’s Republic of Letters 157 budget, its schedule for shipbuilding for the upcoming 30 years.10 Such documents in theory link the rationale for the unique set of means of the U.S. Navy—its ships—to an expected set of ends; why else write them? Better still, given the long lifespan of warships as capital- and technology-intensive assets, these reports should inform two branches of the U.S. government, the Executive and Congress, allowing them to allocate resources. To provide consistency such plans should evolve slowly, changing only as new ideas, challenges and capabilities arise. In a large organization of onethird of a million people (as of 2019), plus reservists and civilians, such discipline matters. Instead, the annual shipbuilding plans neither link ends to means, nor do they avoid changing their approach quickly. The fiscal year 2015 report reported a current inventory numbering 289 ships and set out a force total of 306 by 2019.11 Nearly five years later—the target date for the earlier report’s force of 306—the Navy counted 301 vessels in its current inventory, but had substituted a goal of 355 ships by the year 2034.12 To be certain, an American presidential election had occurred, shifting national policy, and a 2016 Navy force structure assessment raised its estimate of ships needed for service missions. Three intervening plans, however, adjusted shipbuilding goals every year, showing an absence of consistency.13 None of these government reports explained from where the ships’ crews or maintenance staff would come, essential if the fleet is operate at all.14 They offer no semblance of a link between means and ends; despite their apparent 30-year time horizon, they are just snapshots of the state of Navy purchasing plans. 10 “Budgeting for construction of naval vessels: annual plan and certification,” 10 U.S. Code, § 231(b) (2), https://www.govinfo.gov/content/pkg/USCODE-2011-titl e10/html/USCODE-2011-title10-subtitleA-partI-chap9.htm#CHAPTER9_1_target. 11 Deputy Chief of Naval Operations (Integration of Capabilities and Resources) (N8), “Annual Long-Range Plan for the Construction of Naval Vessels for FY2015,” June 2014, 4, https://navylive.dodlive.mil/files/2014/07/30-year-shipbuil ding-plan1.pdf. 12 Deputy Chief of Naval Operations (Warfare System Requirements – OPNAV N9), “Annual Long-Range Plan for Construction of Naval Vessels for Fiscal Year (FY) 2020,” March 2019, 13, https://www.navy.mil/strategic/PB20_Shipbuilding_ Plan.pdf. 13 Hans Ulrich Kaeser, “Abandon Ships. The Costly Illusion of Unaffordable Transformation” (Washington, D.C.: CSIS Center for Strategic and International Studies, revised draft 19 August 2008), 9, https://csis-prod.s3.amazonaws.com/s3fs-publ ic/legacy_files/files/media/csis/pubs/080822_naval_equipment_acquisition.pdf9. I am indebted to my colleague, Dr. Anselm van der Peet, for leading me to this conclusion during a conversation in Tel Aviv, Israel, 7 September 2018. 14 Kuehn (n. d.), 31. Sarandis Papadopoulos 158 What the armed services buy is a transient thing, while strategy should be longer-term, and intellectually durable. In contrast, the 1980s’ Maritime Strategy always aimed at creating a 600ship fleet, and Swartz’s efforts culminated in his shepherding of a declassified and published version explaining it in the U.S. Naval Institute Proceedings.15 The force objective had originated during mid-1970s’ discussions within the Navy Department, was based upon intelligence about Soviet capabilities (as the dominant opponent), and persisted until the Cold War’s end.16 Through official and public versions of the strategic rationale for a 600-ship Navy, Swartz sought to make the service sensible to American lawmakers and the public. It fundamentally and essentially bridged the gap in understanding between naval and political leaders, translating strategy usably for policy makers, a lasting problem for the Navy since the document’s eclipse after 1989.17 The strategy also described the infrastructure needed, which the industrial base of the time could support.18 Together, these integrated a remarkably consistent explanation of the Navy’s influence, in peacetime, crises or war, all sustaining the force goal. Arguably, making such explanations is hardest for the Navy, which in addition to being the most independent of the services, faces the sharpest divide from American public understanding.19 Gallup surveys from 2001 to 2014 confirmed that, apart from the U.S. Coast Guard, the Navy was the armed service generally regarded as least important or prestigious to American de- 15 The U.S. Naval Institute Proceedings issue “The Maritime Strategy” was published in January 1986, as vol. 112/1/995 (Supplement), https://www.usni.org/magazines /proceedings/1986/january-supplement. 16 John B. Hattendorf (ed.), “U.S. Naval Strategy in the 1970s: Selected Documents,” Naval War College Newport Papers 30 (Newport, RI: Naval War College Press, 2007), 104. 17 A point derived from Janine Davidson, “Civil-Military Friction and Presidential Decision-Making: Explaining the Broken Dialogue,” Presidential Studies Quarterly, vol.45, no.1 (March 2013). 18 In essence, 1980s’ commercial shipbuilding lost a Federal subsidy, which freed up yards and skilled workers to switch to warship construction instead. For explaining the one-time changes in American “differential shipbuilding” for merchant vessels during the period, I am obliged to my colleague Dr. Sal Mercogliano, of Campbell University, in an e-mail of 28 May 2019. 19 Colin Roberts, “The Navy,” in Movement and Maneuver Culture and the Competition for Influence Among the U.S. Military Services, by Rebecca Zimmerman, Kimberly Jackson, Natasha Lander, Colin Roberts, Dan Madden and Rebeca Orrie (Santa Monica, CA: Rand Corporation, 2019), 75. Peter Swartz’s Republic of Letters 159 fense.20 In contrast, the 1980s’ Maritime Strategy mattered for service prestige, its budget and its operational readiness.21 After his first retirement in 1993, as a Center for Naval Analyses (CNA) researcher Swartz became a long-term advisor to the Navy’s strategy and policy office, N3/N5. He also served as a member of the Secretary of the Navy’s Advisory Subcommittee on Naval History, making his approach multidisciplinary. A voracious reader and expert networker, he tirelessly backed people intent on studying the U.S. Navy, supporting uniformed and civilian researchers, including the present author. Swartz’s contacts, advocacy, research, and writing over the next 26 years made him the single most valuable resource on U.S. Navy strategy in the Washington, D.C, area. Those contributions are why the three books studied here could be written. Each of the works examined here will be evaluated and intellectually positioned, especially with respect to Peter Swartz’s approach to strategy. They partly reflect his generation-long commitment to making the case for the utility of thoughtful writing to the service.22 Specifically, this essay assesses what value each book assigns to the planning, programming and messaging functions of the U.S. Navy and the OPNAV staff. As well, this essay will use the authors’ presentation of the 1992 strategy document . . . From the Sea to clarify what the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps thought during the fin-de-siècle moment. That document, the first written after the Soviet Union’s end, shows naval thought when starting from a blank slate, illustrating how the two services managed the transition from the Cold War to addressing the more diffuse ensuing threats, if less existential ones, of the period which followed. Larissa Forster positions her work at the locus of missions outside of war, roles in the past labelled as gunboat diplomacy.23 Employing the term “crisis-response” instead, she addresses the political uses of sea-going force, its strengths and weaknesses, how it influences diplomacy and coercion, 20 Dave Goldich and Art Swift, “Americans Say Army Most Important Branch to U.S. Defense,” Gallup, 23 May 2015, https://news.gallup.com/poll/170657/america ns-say-army-important-branch-defense.aspx. 21 Kuehn (n. d.), 34-35. 22 Jonathan Schulman, “Review of Desch, Michael C.: Cult of the Irrelevant: The Waning Influence of Social Science on National Security,” H-Diplo, H-Net Reviews (August 2019). 23 Larissa Forster, Influence without Boots on the Ground: Seaborne Crisis Response, Naval War College Newport Papers 39 (Newport, RI: Naval War College Press, 2013), 73. Sarandis Papadopoulos 160 and concludes with measures of seapower’s impact.24 Her book inextricably links the missions of the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps to one another, given the littoral and expeditionary foci of their work of post-1989 crisis response.25 This truly is seapower influencing events ashore, and offers a potential yardstick to measure the applicability of the foreign policy alternative known as “off-shore balancing.” While not addressed by Forster herself, that idea posits a constrained role of influence, or “shaping,” through which to employ American naval strength. Shaping entered the American naval lexicon through the document . . . From the Sea.26 Organized topically, Influence Without Boots on the Ground opens the background of naval operations other than war. To Forster, navies are fundamentally different military forces, which by their nature offer force in increments. The fleet’s span of six types of commitments, from most dangerous to least are: combat, shows of force, peacekeeping and arming of partners, surveillance and monitoring, noncombatant removal, and humanitarian assistance and disaster relief (HA/DR).27 The emphasis on the last of these in her work is not coincidental, coming on the heels of a major U.S. Navy HA/DR mission in the aftermath of the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami.28 Notably, Forster does not address domestic use of naval force, such as occurred in 2005 after Hurricane Katrina hit U.S. states along the Gulf of Mexico.29 Forster’s book tightly focuses upon employing a statistical methodology to measure and explain the importance of naval intervention during crises. Case studies of maritime roles, 241 in all, are the evidence used to evaluate 24 Forster (2013), 10-11. Subsequently reinforced by Bruce Elleman and S. C. M. Paine (eds.), Navies and Soft Power: Historical Case Studies and the Nonuse of Military Force, Naval War College Newport Papers 42 (Newport, RI: Naval War College Press, June 2015). 25 Forster (2013), 35. 26 John Mearsheimer, The Tragedy of Great Power Politics (New York: W.W. Norton: 2014), Chapter 7, “The Offshore Balancers,” and Chapter 8, “Balancing versus Buck-Passing.” See also Sean C. O’Keefe, Frank B. Kelso and C. E. Mundy, “From the Sea: A New Direction for the Naval Services,” in Marine Corps Gazette 76, no. 11 (November 1992). 27 Forster (2013), 100-101. 28 Bruce Elleman, Waves of Hope: The U.S. Navy’s Response to the Tsunami in Northern Indonesia, Naval War College Newport Papers 28 (Newport, RI: Naval War College Press, February 2007). 29 14 U.S. Navy ships and 3 auxiliaries, plus six allied warships or coast guard vessels. See Brian Walsh, Support to the Hurricane Katrina Response by the Joint Force Maritime Component Commander: Reconstruction and Issues (Alexandria, VA: Center for Naval Analyses, September 2006), 81-87. Peter Swartz’s Republic of Letters 161 the value and success of a seaborne contribution.30 That approach is important, for one of the most often-cited roles of the U.S. Navy, serving as a conventional deterrent, is truly obscure. Showing when an opponent did not act because an American aircraft carrier and escorts was over the horizon is simply too vague a proposition to prove. Outside of this book, the deterrent role of a gunboat is often asserted, and very difficult to show; unlike Förster, this essay’s author has tried to do so on several occasions, without success. Influence without Boots on the Ground characterizes the central message of . . . From the Sea as directly littoral in nature and focused on influencing events ashore. In particular, the 1992 document showed how peacetime forward presence delivered the highest diplomatic value for the American government.31 Emphasizing that presence role for the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps reflected the many regionally-defined needs of the day. After 1991, the Arabian Gulf and Adriatic Sea regions experienced repeated crises, political and military in nature, while Southeast Asia and the Caribbean also faced maritime challenges, migrant populations and environmental challenges.32 Confronting them, the full range of naval capabilities enunciated in . . . From the Sea, also six in number, included: • Forward deployment/presence • Strategic deterrence • Control of the seas • Crisis response • Project precise power • Sealift (for strategic mobility)33 To use such attributes as means, Forster characterizes American domestic political ends around the turn of the century as seeking some sort a role in minimizing human suffering, limiting conflicts and fighting terrorism, all without waging costly combat ashore.34 For the United States, the 1992-1994 intervention in Somalia showed the limits of political reluc- 30 Forster (2013), Appendix A, 236-330. This is solely available in the online version. 31 Ibid., 45. 32 Gary E. Weir (PI) and Sandra Doyle (ed.), You Cannot Surge Trust (Washington, D.C.: Naval History and Heritage Command, 2013), passim; and Bruce Elleman, “Waves of Hope: The U.S. Navy’s Response to the Tsunami in Northern Indonesia,” Naval War College Newport Papers 28 (Newport, RI: Naval War College Press, February 2007). 33 Forster (2013), 22; and O’Keefe et al. (1992). 34 Forster (2013), 59. See also O’Keefe et al. (1992). Sarandis Papadopoulos 162 tance most starkly.35 The three decades since then have also seen a fair degree of unanimity between the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps on the need for close relations, and commitment to littoral operations, starting with the white paper . . . From the Sea.36 Such comity between the two minimized inter-service arguments. But that tight link generated a theoretical blurring, for in centralizing American naval forward presence as a mission, . . . From the Sea also opened a gap from Julian Corbett’s historic assertions about the impact seapower delivered ashore. Writing a century ago, the British theorist saw maritime power as a military (i.e. land) enabler or hindrance during warfare, with his original meaning to address using naval combat for political ends, not necessarily the day-to-day of peacetime foreign policy.37 Retrospectively, the utility of low-level naval diplomacy seems to have peaked around the time of the publication of Forster’s book.38 This does not mean that the need for maritime subtlety has declined; navies will always perform the six roles she outlines. Instead, the more recent demand signal reflects that the challenge faced by the United States and its friends has shifted emphasis to confront peer-competitors. This change puts more stresses on naval forces, asking them to prepare to deal with day-to-day forward presence needs and to prepare for war.39 A particular twist applies to the U.S. Navy’s unique force structure, too. While most researchers measure its aircraft carriers through their military and diplomatic impact, the ships are also truly high-volume platforms. That last aspect is, one suspects, why they are dispatched to meet humanitarian demands: an American CVN took part in the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, 2005 Hurricane Katri- 35 Gary J. Ohls, Somalia … From the Sea, Naval War College Newport Papers 34 (Newport, RI: Naval War College Press, July 2007). 36 Dan Madden, “The Marine Corps,” in Movement and Maneuver Culture and the Competition for Influence Among the U.S. Military Services, by Rebecca Zimmerman, Kimberly Jackson, Natasha Lander, Colin Roberts, Dan Madden and Rebeca Orrie (Santa Monica, CA: Rand Corporation, 2019), 121. 37 Julian Corbett, Some Principles of Maritime Strategy (Annapolis, MD: The Naval Institute Press, 1988), 336. See also Matthew Fay, “Bad Idea: Debating Grand Strategy,” DEFENSE 360°, Center for Strategic and International Studies, 13 December 2019, https://defense360.csis.org/bad-idea-debating-grand-strategy/. 38 Forster (2013), 188. See a contrasting view in John R. Deni, Military Engagement and Forward Presence: Down but Not Out as Tools to Shape and Win (Carlisle Barracks, PA: U.S. Army War College, January 2016). 39 Department of Defense, Summary of the National Defense Strategy: Sharpening the American Military’s Competitive Edge (Washington, D.C.: Department of Defense, 2018). Peter Swartz’s Republic of Letters 163 na, 2010 Haitian earthquake and 2011 Japanese earthquake relief missions, events when the carriers’ prodigious through-put were complemented by much requested amphibious warfare ships. Doing everything prevents focus on any specific task. Crucially, by using the quantitative methods of this work, Forster attempts to measure the frequency with which Navy and Marine Corps forces are considered useful to particular types of crises (Chapter 4). Her conclusion that naval forces are employed most frequently when territorial issues are at stake, probably because of their ability to remain in a theater over time, is both well-defended and important.40 In contrast, stationing land power ashore is visible, and its prolonged use can provoke local resentment, for example in the 1992-1994 UN mission to Somalia, the 1993-1994 Rwandan intervention, and continuous presence since 1990 of American service members in Saudi Arabia, have shown.41 Committing naval forces unpredictably even over time, while taxing on their readiness, avoids that risk. More importantly, Forster’s method also illuminates the difficult-tomeasure utility of naval interventions in operations outside of war (Chapter 5). Crucially, when U.S. Navy forces are committed on their own, as a minimal demonstration of force, they contribute the least to ending a crisis.42 Perhaps discouragingly, the author concludes that committing naval forces unaided most often generates a stalemate, as opposed to the greater success yielded by committing more varieties of military force, citing the example of the 1995-1996 Taiwan Strait crisis.43 This suggestion is important, although one might reflect that naval power is typically not employed without some other element of national commitment alongside it, such as diplomatic or economic pressure. Outside of warfare, navies are often simply used to buy time for other means to work. For example, economic sanctions, admittedly a tool beyond Forster’s scope, often observed by other nations, also reshape behavior over the long term when used in conjunction with naval operations.44 Further research may show if these complementary links are correct. 40 Forster (2013), 142-143. 41 Perry D. Jamieson, Khobar Towers: Tragedy and Response (Washington, D.C.: Air Force History and Museums Program, 2008). 42 Forster (2013), 157-158, see also 183. 43 Ibid., 167-168. 44 Gary Clyde Hufbauer, Jeffrey J. Schott, Kimberly Ann Elliott and Barbara Oegg, Economic Sanctions Reconsidered, 3rd ed. (Washington, D.C:. Peterson Institute, June 2009). Sarandis Papadopoulos 164 Peter Haynes’s credibility as a thinker is magnified by membership in one of the Navy’s three warfighting communities (surface ship, submarine and flying officers) and service on the staff of the Deputy Chief of Naval Operations for Operations, Plans and Strategy, N3/N5. He came to the strategist role after an aviator career, a rare officer who commanded an E-2C airborne early warning squadron and received duty time to complete a doctorate in strategic studies.45 That background positioned him to understand and critique the post-1989 American way of writing and using strategy. Central to his argument is the Navy’s operational and businesscentric mentalité, in place of a strategic outlook, a method favoring the theories of Antoine-Henri Jomini rather than those of either Carl von Clausewitz or Alfred Thayer Mahan.46 In essence, when trying to craft naval strategy senior leaders, and OPNAV in the Pentagon, default to operational management techniques rather than long-term and contextualized thinking.47 The book Toward a New Maritime Strategy is broadly chronological. Eight of its chapters are devoted to the high-level documents written between 1992 and 2007, typically retaining currency for two or three years. Under a variety of designations—as a strategy, vision or planning guidance —these texts strove fulfill Samuel Huntington’s 1954 formula for matching ideas to procurement and messaging. They also varied in length from three pages (“Anytime, Anywhere: A Navy for the 21st Century”) to ninety (“Navy Strategic Planning Guidance”) and in security classification.48 Just one, the 2007 A Cooperative Strategy for 21st Century Seapower, meets Haynes’s standard for a capstone document, which in the words of CNO Mike Mullen, should go beyond the idea “‘that maritime strategy exists solely to fight and win wars at sea.’” Mullen was, . . . in effect, revealing a missing dimension in American naval (and military) thinking that had caused the United States to neglect for too 45 Peter D. Haynes, Toward a New Maritime Strategy: American Naval Thinking in the Post-Cold War Era (Annapolis, MD: The Naval Institute Press, 2015), 272, note 59. 46 Ibid., 3, 5-8. 47 Ibid., 17. David A. Rosenberg, “Process. The Realities of Formulating Modern Naval Strategy,” in Mahan is not Enough. The Proceedings of a Conference on the Works of Sir Julian Corbett and Admiral Sir Hugh Richmond, ed. by James Goldrick and John B. Hattendorf (Newport, RI: Naval War College Press 1993), 141-175 is vital. 48 Haynes (2015), 128 and 140. Peter Swartz’s Republic of Letters 165 long the full range of political and economic effects that military power can achieve.”49 The 2007 Cooperative Strategy was superseded in 2015, just as Haynes’s book was published. To unpack the milieu shaping Navy strategy documents, Haynes employs interviews with a generation’s worth of participants in the process. At least 10 former officers spoke with him, largely retired Navy captains from the strategist community. They also included retired Vice Admiral John Morgan, who oversaw writing the 2007 Cooperative Strategy, as well as that document’s lead author, Commander Bryan McGrath.50 Haynes’s reliance on interviews stems from the reticence to publish by post-1945 Chiefs of Naval Operations, just two of whom have written autobiographies, and who have set the tone for all senior officers to avoid putting internal processes on paper.51 Trying to reconstruct the thinking behind these Navy documents is therefore challenging, and the list of interviewees he relied upon counts most of the strategy circle’s core contributors. For Haynes, . . . From the Sea attempted to solve an internal Navy argument about the nature of the post-1991 world. Inside OPNAV, the central difficulty after Desert Storm lay in answering whether the Navy should plan to address the most prevalent day-to-day management questions of the global system, fight small-scale actions, deter competitors, or prepare for the least likely challenge, but the most dangerous one, a war with a symmetrical or peer opponent.52 Each of these approaches would fundamentally shape what the Navy planned to do, what forces it sought to buy, and how it communicated its place in national security. After the Cold War the argument was imperfectly resolved. 49 Ibid., 235. 50 Ibid., see notes pages 253-282, especially for chapters 5 and 6, 10-12. It is worth noting that Peter Swartz shared his contemporary e-mail correspondence with Haynes, further filling gaps in the record. 51 Elmo Zumwalt, On Watch: a Memoir (New York: Quadrangle, 1976) and James Holloway, Aircraft Carriers at War: A Personal Retrospective of Korea, Vietnam, and the Soviet Confrontation (Annapolis, MD: The Naval Institute Press, 2007). Biographies in Robert W. Love, (ed.) The Chiefs of Naval Operations (Annapolis, MD: The Naval Institute Press, 1980) end with Zumwalt. Former Navy Secretary John Lehman uniquely fills some gaps, e.g. his Oceans Ventured: Winning the Cold War at Sea (New York: W. W. Norton & Company, 2018), written with the support of Peter Swartz. 52 Haynes (2015), 70-71. Sarandis Papadopoulos 166 Specifically, some naval thinkers (especially among the Marines and the surface navy) held the United States would become the fulcrum of the “New World Order” announced in 1990 by President George H.W. Bush. Their planned use of maritime power would seek to defuse crises. Others (largely carrier aviators) wanted to employ the fleet either to deter threats or when needed launch high-technology strikes to destroy them. Finally, the service’s submariners generally stood as the conserving school of naval thought, arguing for post-Cold War restraint, a measure designed to preserve the Navy’s technical military capabilities until needed to confront the next major challenger. It is interesting to note that subsurface officers, until 1982 dominated by the astute technocrat Admiral Hyman Rickover, had assumed preeminence in Navy culture, with three consecutive Chiefs of Naval Operations between 1982 and 1994 (Admirals Watkins, Trost and Kelso) coming from their ranks.53 In essence, that last group sought the most modest commitment of day-to-day naval capabilities to non-warfighting missions. Haynes’s book is the most OPNAV-centric of the three studies reviewed here, partly reflecting his positioning as a uniformed Navy strategist. It highlights and criticizes the countervailing forces which turn most of the service’s strategic products into self-referential, unhelpful and anodyne documents. After the Cold War, only the 2007 Cooperative Strategy has met the standard of being a durable source of ideas with which the Navy can message, and even it never succeeded in disciplining OPNAV with respect to procurement. For Haynes, fixing the internal discontinuities of Navy thought, purchasing and message has been hard. Only a more deliberate focus on context and writing will fix that problem. Sebastian Bruns explicitly seeks to bridge the gap in thinking between academic (more theoretical in method and aim) approaches to maritime strategy and internally created U.S. Navy strategic thought (written to satisfy the ends, ways and means construct) in the period up to 2016.54 His book, U.S. Naval Strategy and National Security: The Evolution of American Maritime Power is structured similarly to Haynes’s work, although temporally stretches forward two more years. It, too, addresses the strategy documents in order, setting them into four contextual periods: the 1980s’ Maritime Strategy; the long 1990s from the end of the Soviet Union to the 11 53 Mark R. Hagerott, “Commanding men and machines: admiralship, technology, and ideology in the 20th century U.S. Navy,” Ph.D. dissertation (College Park, MD: University of Maryland, 2008). 54 Sebastian Bruns, U.S. Naval Strategy and National Security: The Evolution of American Maritime Power (London, New York: Routledge, 2018), 3. Peter Swartz’s Republic of Letters 167 September 2001 attacks; the early 21st century; and the crucible following the 2008 Great Recession, the aftermath of the Arab Spring in 2011, increasing assertiveness by the People’s Republic of China, and the outright Russian aggression in Ukraine starting in 2014. Those four periods respectively, and not coincidentally, spanned the Presidencies of Ronald W. Reagan; George H.W. Bush and William J. Clinton; George W. Bush; and Barack H. Obama. Bruns’s sources bears the imprint of Swartz’s collation of public and internal strategic documents. The crucial elements of naval strategy in each period the book examines are the overall international setting, naval leaders, domestic politics and national policies, the documents themselves, fleet strength, what the Navy operationally did, and the impact strategy documents had on allies and the Navy’s organization.55 Strategy assumes a central role in this study, reflecting guidance from national policy and circumstances, and to then guide force development, operations and relationships. Bruns interviewed, or corresponded with, the U.S. Navy’s strategic community members, most notably retired Admiral James “Ace” Lyons, a late Cold War 2nd Fleet (based in Norfolk, Virginia) leader, thereafter Pacific Fleet commander. In U.S. Naval Strategy and National Security, that last interviewee sheds light on how an operational leader used and actually valued the framework offered by the 1980s’ Maritime Strategy.56 Fundamentally, for Bruns the thinking of U.S. Navy during the whole era proved to be on the cutting edge of American policy. Where Bruns crucially stands apart from Haynes’s account is in his book’s focus on the operational and diplomatic spillover from writing and relying upon a naval strategy. The 1980s’ Maritime Strategy’s strengths are well known, unifying U.S. Navy method and signaling to the public, and the Soviet Union, the service’s intent.57 Bruns observes even popular culture picked up on the Cold War strategy’s themes, with Tom Clancy’s 1986 novel Red Storm Rising showing naval attributes of a hypothetical Third World War, and the same author’s novel and resulting film, The Hunt for Red October, illustrating the U.S. Navy’s aggressive tactics and operating patterns in peacetime.58 Such measures signaled American naval goals externally and internally. Similarly, for Bruns, in 2013 when Presi- 55 See ibid., chapters 4-7. 56 Ibid., 75. See also Lehman (2018), 67-81 and 189-208. 57 Steven E. Miller and Stephen Van Evera (eds.), Naval Strategy and National Security: An “International Security” Reader (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1988), passim. 58 Bruns (2018), 100, note 56 and 106, note 177. Sarandis Papadopoulos 168 dent Barack Obama elected not to use military force to punish the Syrian regime of Bashar al-Assad, he fundamentally redirected how U.S. naval power was employed, moving away from the so-called “Washington Playbook.”59 Obama’s rerouting of strategic practice, reverberant today, made a genuine operational impact, essentially downshifting the use of naval force. Bruns is fundamentally concerned with how political ends reshaped the ways maritime power was employed. The ensuing decades also saw American thinking about maritime power spread across the globe and be adopted by a wide array of sea services. Operationally, for example, NATO allies joined in the U.S. embargo of Saddam Hussein’s Iraq and the former Yugoslavia during its civil war. A broader array of navies joined in the 1999 United Nations-mandated effort in East Timor, as well as the post-9/11 Global War on Terror. Many of these nations would go on join the antipiracy mission off the Horn of Africa in the 21st century.60 And the language of at least one strategic publication, the 2007 Cooperative Strategy for 21st Century Seapower, with its observation “trust and cooperation cannot be surged,” entered the lexicon of allied and partner sea services in 2008 and 2009.61 As Bruns notes, “it was CS-21 which courted other navies, gave them a sense of ownership and participation in U.S. naval power, and provided a sense of political top cover to engage with the U.S. Navy.”62 Persuasive ideas can make a difference in very real terms. Creating strategic ideas for the Navy and Marine Corps has proven an ongoing process, with Bruns enumerating 23 of them in period after 1991.63 The initial observation one is tempted to make is that these frequent rewritings has meant an average lifespan of about a year for each document. A further problem is that due to the past three decades of changes in service thinking, the profile of the Navy’s deployment only grew wider, while its actual size shrank. Absent a durable strategy, the fleet’s ships, and more importantly their crew members, only became busi- 59 Ibid., 231. 60 Ibid., 148-149, 202-204. See also Weir and Doyle (2013), passim, and Martin Murphy, Small Boats, Weak States, Dirty Money: Piracy and Maritime Terrorism in the Modern World (London: C. Hurst, 2009). 61 As reported to the author in autumn 2009 by a staff member of then-Chief of Naval Operations, Admiral Gary Roughead. The original language about trust and cooperation: James T. Conway, Gary Roughead and Thad W. Allen, A Cooperative Strategy for 21st Century Seapower (Washington D.C.: Department of Defense, 2007), 11. 62 Bruns (2018), 205. 63 Tables in ibid., 127, 182 and 235. Peter Swartz’s Republic of Letters 169 er. In fact, by 2017 these pressures culminated in what one 2010 Navysponsored report had anticipated: a decline in maintenance and training, lowering overall readiness to operate, which ultimately led to two lethal collisions at sea in the Western Pacific.64 Bruns assesses the impact Navy arguments had on force goals, and cannot find a post-1991 example where strategy successfully justified the fleet needed. His assessment of . . . From the Sea measures its value in strictly political terms, reflecting the era but irrelevant to the operational fleet.65 To be sure, since 1991 the problem of matching those two demands was admittedly difficult, especially given little public interest in what the fleet was for, in particular during the two ground wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. But the third disciplinary urge of writing strategy also dropped away: since 2001 the U.S. Navy has never had enough ships to fulfill all of its missions.66 By the second decade of the 21st century, the Navy’s own force goals showed the fleet lacked between one-tenth and one-seventh of the ships its missions demanded. For Bruns, the root cause for this intellectual shortfall is contingency, sometimes called the tyranny of events, which only a well-crafted strategy can ever hope to manage.67 Risking accusation of over-simplifying Navy strategy documents as strawmen, their importance stands confirmed by these books, most of which were drew from Peter Swartz’s research. The choices made by the Navy, and secondarily the Marine Corps, came with consequences. The crucial choice enshrined in . . . From the Sea, reinforced through Forward . . . From the Sea, extended and fixed the service’s forward presence role as its central operational method following Desert Storm. The Navy stayed committed to East Asia, and substituted its Arabian Gulf role for the Mediterranean, while not fully leaving the latter.68 Meanwhile, during the 1990s the U.S. Army and Air Force chopped their strength by half in Europe, then by two-thirds more after 2001, shifting forces to the Afghanistan and Iraq wars of the new millennium. In contrast, the Navy shrank in strength while adding the requirement to support another distant station, 64 Derived from Daniel Whiteneck, Michael Price, Neil Jenkins and Peter M. Swartz, The Navy at a Tipping Point: Maritime Dominance at Stake?, (Alexandria, VA: Center for Naval Analyses, March 2010). For the collisions see Michael Beyer and Gary Roughead, “Strategic Readiness Review 2017,” 3 December 2017, http:// s3.amazonaws.com/CHINFO/SRR+Final+12112017.pdf. 65 Bruns (2018), 132. 66 See tables in ibid., 143, 201 and 237. 67 Ibid., 255-256. 68 Whiteneck et al. (2010), 12. Sarandis Papadopoulos 170 and became busier with crisis response. The Navy would tackle every mission, but made no coherent argument that its fleet needed alteration in configuration, doing both while its overall numbers of hulls continued to fall. Pulled in three directions—under-resourced, committed to peacekeeping and then warfare after 2001, while globally present–something eventually had to give. After the fact, it’s fairly straightforward to understand what trade-off the U.S. Navy made to support forward presence with combat-credible forces. The Navy dropped its overall personnel strength by nearly 35% between 1991 and 2000, only to continue cutting a sixth of its remaining strength after 9/11, bottoming out in 2012.69 Indeed the U.S. Marine Corps of that year was proportionally the largest it has been in American history, relative to the personnel strength of the U.S. Navy. While the Marine Corps should not necessarily become smaller, the Navy needs people to crew and maintain its units, in addition to those hurriedly added since 2012. The only ready source of personnel, the Navy Reserve, deserves greater attention as a stop-gap to improving readiness across the fleet. Such a message must be communicated to national leaders and the American public. Programmatically, the service also ruined attempts to rebalance the fleet by halting construction of the ships it would need for either its systemmaintenance role (frigates), or in the quantities needed for a peer competition (attack submarines). Plenty of advice from inside the Navy, including by retired Captain (and late Naval Postgraduate School Professor) Wayne Hughes, called for building frigates, or even smaller vessels, but the lack of a strategy to guide ship-design and -construction rates prevented making any decisions until after the end of the 20th century.70 Instead, the small surface combatant suited for the post-1992 world, designed as two types of Littoral Combat Ship (LCS, now termed frigates), had to be started from scratch after 11 September 2001. By then the Navy had not built a single 69 Derived from Defense Manpower Data Center, “DoD Personnel, Workforce Reports & Publications,” https://www.dmdc.osd.mil/appj/dwp/dwp_reports.jsp. See also Mark Cancian, “U.S. Military Forces in FY 2020. Navy,” (Washington, D.C.: Center for Strategic and International Studies, October 2019), 25-26 https://www. csis-prod.s.3.amazonaws.com/3sfs-public/publication/191119_Cancian_FY2020_F INAL.pdf. 70 Wayne P. Hughes, Jr., “Single-Purpose Warships for the Littorals,” in U.S. Naval Institute Proceedings vol. 140/6/1,336 (June 2014), 27-32. The Marine Corps is exploring smaller amphibious ships. See General David Berger, Commandant’s Planning Guidance (Washington, D.C.: Department of the Navy, 16 July 2019). Peter Swartz’s Republic of Letters 171 small warship in seven years, a requirement which had fallen between the cracks in service thinking.71 Likewise, the shipbuilding wilderness of the 1990s forced upward the cost for the Seawolf attack submarine class, leading to the building of just three ships, not enough to manage an assertive Russia’s undersea arm, never mind that of the People’s Republic of China.72 Its eminently suitable replacement, the less-pricey Virginia-class constructed starting in 1998, could not be built fast enough to fill in the gap during the expensive land wars of the early 2000s.73 The Navy’s shipbuilding and personnel problems are emblematic of the needle threaded by . . . From the Sea: neither fish nor fowl, the strategic document over-committed the fleet, without asking for the resources to do so.74 Today’s mismatch of ends and means is profound. Ultimately working to maintain the international trade system, and unarguably accelerating globalization, the 21st century U.S. Navy has resorted to applying its shrinking high-end force, largely without any additional resources devoted to procuring and maintaining the fleet it needed. With the notable exception of its NATO allies, plus Australia and Japan, as well as intermittent support from partners including India, even at times Russia and the People’s Republic of China on piracy, the strain is taxing the world’s fleets. The end—rules-based global prosperity—is wearing down the means, the navies needed to defend it.75 A conjuncture of events, the peace dividend, followed by multiple crises, two land wars and American budget quarrels, alternated different types of strain on the service now nearly three decades old, causing instability at sea and creating strategic 71 Robert O. Work, The Littoral Combat Ship: How We Got Here and Why (Scotts Valley, CA: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, 2014). 72 John F. Schank (ed.), Learning From Experience. Vol. II: Lessons from the U.S. Navy’s Ohio, Seawolf, and Virginia Submarine Programs (Santa Monica, CA: Rand Corporation, 2011), 55-56. The Seawolf-class stretched technology, just as the slightly later Zumwalt (DDG 1000) destroyer did, leading to another three-ship class. 73 Ronald O’Rourke, “Navy Virginia (SSN-774) Class Attack Submarine Procurement: Background and Issues for Congress,” Congressional Research Service RL32418, 24 June 2019, https://fas.org/sgp/crs/weapons/RL32418.pdf, 3, 10 and Appendix A, 21-22, https://assets.documentcloud.org/documents/6167505/Navy-V irginia-SSN-774-Class-Attack-Submarine.pdf. 74 Sealift has likewise received short shrift; see Salvatore Mercogliano, “Sealift solutions are elusive … but not impossible,” Defense News, 29 December 2019, https:// www.defensenews.com/naval/2019/12/29/the-sealift-can-gets-kicked-again-the-drift -s-ii-vol-vii/?. 75 Derived in part from Simon Reich and Peter Dombrowski, The End of Grand Strategy: US Maritime Operations in the Twenty-First Century (Ithaca & London. Cornell: 2017), esp. chapters 5 & 6. Sarandis Papadopoulos 172 consequences we cannot predict. Merely managing programs and operations, as . . . From the Sea and most of its successors have been employed since then, is inadequate.76 It seems safe to say that writing a durable maritime strategy, one recognizing the national and international importance of seapower and explaining the means needed to fulfil national ends, is central to recognizing the world’s oceans as central to human activity. It is also the essential first step for the current generation of American leaders to take. The objective success of these three books rests in their discernment of the conditions and challenges the U.S. Navy has confronted since the mid-1980s, and in showing its institutional thought processes in managing them. They demonstrate the granularities of linking policy ends to strategic means, giving naval leaders and academic readers plenty of food for thought. If the American service’s record in overcoming these obstacles is less than stellar, the response again is that strategy-making is difficult. This is not to suggest that the U.S. Navy’s current strategy problems are either new or insuperable. Even the 19th-century theorist Alfred Thayer Mahan recognized just how hard crafting strategy was, and how tempting material solutions were as rival approaches to problem solving during times of rapid technological change.77 But these books also suggest the U.S. Navy needs to do some more thinking, preferably in concert with its sibling sea services, both American and international. The time to invigorate the strategic approach is now. 76 Thomas-Durell Young (2016) “When Programming Trumps Policy and Plans: The Case of the US Department of the Navy,” in Journal of Strategic Studies vol. 39, no. 7 (May 2016), 936-955. 77 As cited in John B. 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Abstract

The 21st century is witnessing renewed tension as conflicts between major powers, serious concerns about future security alliances and global, even generational, security policy challenges arise. In the light of this, naval forces and maritime security, and understanding their underlying strategic rationale, are gaining momentum and importance. What are the roles and missions of naval forces, and how have states and the institutions themselves sought to frame their goals and methods? This book brings together experts from the United States, Europe, and Asia to reflect on how maritime and naval strategy is conceptualised and how it has been used. It celebrates the life and work of Peter M. Swartz, Captain (US Navy) ret., who since contributing to ‘The Maritime Strategy’ of the 1980s as a young Pentagon officer, has been a mentor, friend, intellectual beacon and the foremost purveyor of maritime expertise to the global naval community. With contributions by James Bergeron, Sebastian Bruns, Seth Cropsey, Larissa Forster, Michael Haas, John Hattendorf, Peter Haynes, Andrzej Makowski, Amund Lundesgaard, Narushige Michishita, Martin Murphy, Sarandis Papadopoulos, Nilanthi Samaranayake, Jeremy Stöhs, Eric Thompson, Geoffrey Till, Sarah Vogler, Steve Wills.

Zusammenfassung

Großmachtkonflikte, die Zukunft von sicherheitspolitischen Institutionen sowie transnationalen Generationenherausforderungen bergen eine neue globale Unsicherheit. Vor diesem Hintergrund bekommen maritime Sicherheit und Seestreitkräfte sowie deren Einordnung im außenpolitischen Werkzeugkasten eine zunehmende Bedeutung. Was sind die Rollen und Einsatzaufgaben von Seemacht, und wie haben Staaten und ihre Institutionen maritime Ziele, Mittel und Wege konzeptualisiert? Dieser Sammelband bringt ausgewiesene Experten aus den USA, Europa und Asien zusammen, die ihre Perspektive auf maritime Strategie teilen. Das Buch dient gleichzeitig die Festschrift für Peter M. Swartz, Kapitän zur See a.D. der US-Marine, der seit seiner Arbeit als einer der Autoren der „Maritime Strategy“ (1980er) als Mentor, Freund, intellektueller Leuchtturm und vor allen Dingen als Spiritus Rektor wesentlich zur Schärfung des Verständnisses von Seestrategie in den globalen Beziehungen beigetragen hat. Mit Beiträgen von James Bergeron, Sebastian Bruns, Seth Cropsey, Larissa Forster, Michael Haas, John Hattendorf, Peter Haynes, Andrzej Makowski, Amund Lundesgaard, Narushige Michishita, Martin Murphy, Sarandis Papadopoulos, Nilanthi Samaranayake, Jeremy Stöhs, Eric Thompson, Geoffrey Till, Sarah Vogler, Steve Wills.