The Army, the Government, and the People in the Russo-Ukrainian War

Breaching barriers in Ukraine

Clausewitz–or at least the version of Clausewitz that is taught in many war colleges–has bedeviled generations of students by offering several “trinities.” First, there is the relationship between emotion, chance, and reason which governs events in war. Emotion itself can be broken down as a balance between hatred, violence, and primordial enmity.  At the level of strategy, however, the trinity on which most students of Clausewitz focus is the relationship between the army, the government, and the people. In this week’s Horns of a Dilemma, a panel of three experts discusses the ongoing Russian war of aggression in Ukraine. While they didn’t set out to discuss a Clausewitzian trinity, Michael Kofman of the Center for Naval Analyses, Mark Pomar of the Clements Center for National Security, and Alexandra Sukalo, also of the Clements Center, offer insights that focus our attention exactly on these three critical elements. This discussion was moderated by Texas National Security Review Executive Editor Doyle Hodges, and was recorded on April 7, 2022.

Image: SGT Anthony Jones via DVIDS