he has totally omitted US operations in Afghanistan in 2009-11
Reviewed in the United States on January 15, 2021
I bought this book with great interest and was very keen to read it. Now having read it , following are my very frank views. Much of the details in this book are pure data which can be picked from any source and reproduced. The book all along is weak in analysis and rich in technical facts which does not really help a keen student of military affairs who wants to improve his operational knowledge. The author has been a part of the bureaucracy and has refrained from critical analysis. For example he could have critically analysed how much US drone warfare in Afghanistan was linked to commercial considerations and kickbacks. Interestingly he has simply omitted the biggest US drone operations in history carried out in Afghanistan. The most important drawback of such books is that so far the USA has worked in warfare environments where it enjoyed overwhelming superiority , which will not be a case in a war with a more credible foe. On page 94 he is wrong when he writes that Blitzkrieg had connection with Germanys technical superiority In reality German success was more linked to superior German doctrine and a far superior strategic plan now famous as Manstein Plan. Page 114 contains grammatical errors on line three , poor editing in a very expensive book .Not acceptable. Nowhere does the author take into account the fact that conventional war with tanks involving major states like USA and Russia or NATO is simply not going to take place because of nuclear weapons. What we have seen since 1945 are low intensity conflicts waged by major states using proxies. He over rates Patriots missiles whose performance has been viewed very skeptically by great military thinkers like Martin Van Creveld. I remember exercise zarb e momin of October November 1989 where a Russian scud fired by Afghanistan at the Pakistan Army corps headquarters near Bhakkar missing the target by some 15 to 20 kilometres. The author does not explain why robots were still ineffective in Iraq war in tactical situations requiring decisions that only a human being could take. Similarly he has totally omitted US operations in Afghanistan in 2009-11 where US suffered heavy casualties. Not discussing ongoing US operations and integrating them with his technical details heavy book leaves a bad taste in the mouth. His references to Iraq war while interesting still do not paint a clear picture how US robots and allied systems fare in a major war against a more credible foe like Russia or China. The subject of the book is future of war with robots or robotics but the discussion remains fixed around technical data and the narrative is very poor about strategy or tactics. As a primer to increase your knowledge about robots the book is interesting . But serious discussion is severely lacking and the author is a typical man with a vested interest , who wants to avoid serious discussion. I don’t regret having bought this book as my technical knowledge has improved but wont regard it as any addition to my knowledge of military or serious strategic or operational matters.