[…] The French action in Mali was necessary to stop genocide but the use of force without an elaborated political strategy is a short step from failure. That was the lesson of Afghanistan. My sense is that France and its allies are now drifting towards the great unplanned with no real sense of what they want to achieve, no real sense of how to achieve it and no idea at all how long it is going to take or what cost they will incur in lives or money. Once again the solutions they are offering their publics exist purely in political imagininations.
This is action rather than strategy, heat rather than light. If the answers to my two questions can be both provided and demonstrated then there may be the making of strategy.As Professor Colin Gray once wrote, “If we neglect strategic theory, marginalise it as irrelevant or unworldly then we are utterly at the mercy of the perspective of the moment”.