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Five books on how wars are fought today (The Economist)

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Ukrainian service members fire a shell from a towed howitzer FH-70 at a front line, as Russia's attack on Ukraine continues, in Donbas Region, Ukraine July 18, 2022. REUTERS/Gleb Garanich

via The Economist

Our defence editor picks five books that help make sense of how wars are fought today 

The war in Ukraine is a curious mix of old and new. Soldiers crouch in trenches that would not be out of place in Verdun, were it not for the glimpse of a reconnaissance drone above. Some Ukrainian gunners receive orders via Elon Musk’s Starlink constellation of satellites. Others fire artillery pieces that pre-date the Cuban missile crisis. Chinese-made quadcopters drop 1940s-vintage grenades on unsuspecting Russian tanks. It has the feel of a steampunk novel by Tom Clancy. Making sense of all this can be tricky. Conscription has ebbed away in America and most big European countries, so military matters seem rarefied. The Western wars of the past 30 years have been waged largely against assorted insurgents and guerrillas; the sound of big guns once more pounding out duels within Europe is disorienting. How to understand it all? This selection of five books should help you brush up on modern warfare.

The Face of Battle. By John Keegan. Penguin Books; 384 pages; $18. Bodley Head; £16.99



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