Unconventional Warfare Philosophers

Document Type



Politics and Economics (CGU)

Publication Date



Military and Veterans Studies | Political Science | Public Affairs, Public Policy and Public Administration | Social and Behavioral Sciences


The philosophies of unconventional warfare philosophers can be divided into four schools. The classicists, or early school, represented by Sun Tzu and his ‘indirect approach’, have existed for thousands of years. Marxist‐Leninist revolutionaries gave new emphasis to unconventional warfare as a vehicle for revolution. The theories of these philosophers of the middle school were opposed by those of counterrevolutionaries. With the end of the Cold War, a new strategic environment is emerging, giving rise to new school philosophers reacting to that challenge. They include both those who seek to undermine the nation‐state and those, who, like the earlier counter‐revolutionaries, seek to defend and promote its interests.

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© 1999 Taylor and Francis

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