The Second Line of Defense team provides high quality publications with regard to key global strategic developments. You can purchase these here or on a number of booksellers as well, such as Amazon or Barnes and Noble.

A Maritime Kill Web Force in the Making

Deterrence and Warfighting in the XXIst Century

By: Robbin Laird and Ed Timperlake

As Vice Admiral (Retired) Dewolfe Miller underscores: “Ultimately, peer threats are what drives change and inspires clarity in the way the Navy mans, trains, and equips its forces to defend freedom and deter aggression on a global scale. “A Maritime Kill Web Force in the Making” is the story of the evolution of the US Navy and its preparation for high-end warfare.

“This is essential because the future of combat is to bring trusted and verifiable assets to the fight. The emphasis has been on connectivity, accelerated tactical decision making, as well as common equipment, that allows integration of systems within single services, across services and into allied services in a deliberate and disciplined manner. This publication provides a timely reminder of why the transformation of today’s force is so necessary.”

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The USMC Transformation Path: Preparing for the High-End Fight

Preparing for the High-End Fight

By: Robbin F. Laird, editor

We have just published our latest book which is entitled, The USMC Transformation Path: Preparing for the High-End Fight This is the fifth book in our Second Line of Defense Strategic Book Series.

This book focuses on the USMC in the strategic shift from the Middle Eastern land wars to the return to great power competition and the high-end fight. The path whereby the Marines have generated their capabilities to engage in full spectrum crisis management began with the introduction of the Osprey in 2007, and then entered a new phase with the introduction of the F-35 and now has entered another phase whereby the Marines are working ways to more effectively distributed the force through enhanced mobile and expeditionary basing.

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2020: A Pivotal Year? Navigating Strategic Change at a Time of COVID-19 Disruption

Navigating Strategic Change at a Time of COVID-19 Disruption

By: Robbin F. Laird, editor

“2020: A Pivotal Year?” addresses the impacts of the COVID-19 disruption on global politics and provides assessments of the ripple effects felt throughout Europe and Asia. The book brings together several key essays written during 2020 and in early 2021 from our websites, Second Line of Defense and, which focus on geopolitical change and defense modernization. Authors based in Europe, the United States, and Australia have all contributed to this timely and unique assessment.

Topics range from the Macron and Merkel leadership in Europe to reactions and responses to Chinese policies worldwide. We discuss and highlight the challenges and possible ways ahead for liberal democracies worldwide.

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Training for the High End Fight: The Strategic Shift of the 2020s

The Strategic Shift of the 2020s

By: Robbin F. Laird

“Training for the High-End Fight” highlights the essential strategic shift for the US and allied militaries from land wars in the Middle East to the return of great power competition. The primary challenge of this strategic shift will be the need to operate a full spectrum crisis management force. That means training a force capable of delivering the desired combat and crisis management effect in dealing with 21st century authoritarian powers.

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Joint by Design: The Evolution of Australian Defence Strategy

The Reshaping of Australian Defence Policy

By: Robbin F. Laird

In the midst of the COVID-19 crisis, the prime minister of Australia, Scott Morrison, launched a new defense and security strategy for Australia. This strategy reset puts Australia on the path of enhanced defense capabilities. The change represents a serious shift in its policies towards China, and in reworking alliance relationships going forward. “Joint by Design” is focused on Australian defence modernization and policy, but it is also about preparing liberal democracies around the world for the challenges of the future.

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The Return of Direct Defense in Europe

Meeting the 21st Century Authoritarian Challenge.

By: Robbin F. Laird and Murielle Delaporte

The Return of Direct Defense in Europe catalogs the rise of the 21st century authoritarian powers. Putin’s Russia, Chinese global reach, but also Turkey’s President Erdogan’s agenda, pose new challenges for the direct defense of liberal democracies. The focus is upon Europe and, among other themes, its response to the twin shocks of Crimea and the migration influxes from the war-torn Middle East, a migration dynamic aided and abetted by the Russian intervention in the Syrian Civil War.

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