Talking 'bout our Generation? Assessing the concept of 'Fourth Generation Warfare'

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7 Citations (Scopus)


This article outlines and evaluates the concept of “fourth-generation warfare” (4GW). It provides an overview of the arguments made by proponents of the concept, and assesses a series of criticisms that have been directed against it, particularly that it tends to exaggerate the decline of the state and that it does not describe anything truly new. The article argues that although there are some serious shortcomings in 4GW theory, it does provide many important observations about the changing nature of contemporary conflict. Despite being a flawed model, it is useful as a corrective to the tendency to focus on state-against-state warfare.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)148 - 163
Number of pages16
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2008


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