Toward the End of Force Projection? II. Operational Responses and Political Perspectives Focus stratégique, No. 21 bis, September 2011
For more than a decade, US defense circles have been concerned about the emergence of capabilities and strategies, which, as they spread, risk imperiling the United States" position in the world by their ability to disrupt or prevent force projection operations. Though most of the literature on such “anti-access” strategies focuses on the military aspects of the threat, this Focus stratégique - the second and last part of a two-part study - adopts a different perspective.
Firstly, it considers the various means Western armed forces could rely on to confront anti-access strategies and conduct forcible entry operations, and assesses in particular the potential French and European contributions. Secondly, it argues that the problem of access cannot be studied in depth without taking into account its political dimension, which determines the operational freedom of action of both the interventionist powers and their adversaries. As was the case with the first part of the study, mostly centered on an analysis of current Iranian anti-access capabilities, this article is focused on examples taken from the Persian Gulf region.