What Kind of Military Does France Need - Old and New Models? Politique étrangère, 4/2007 (Winter).
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With the numerous interventions that have taken place since the end of the Cold War, Western militaries have rediscovered the various constraints inherent in limited wars, while confronting asymmetrical adversaries who for their part are waging total wars in protection of vital stakes. This new strategic context requires a clean and definitive break with the legacy of the Cold War. The future force construct or model of the French military must therefore ensure that a logic predicated on the use of force, as well as its implications in terms of capabilities, takes precedence over the logic of mere diplomatic advancement. In turn, this requires a full-spectrum military that covers as many conflict scenarios as possible and eschews complete specialization at the low-end or high-end, and rejects shortfalls and gaps in capabilities and operational functions.Étienne de Durand, analyst of strategic and military affairs, is Head of the Security and Defense Center (Ifri) and teaches at the Institut d’études politiques (Paris).