Newport Papers Number 33 – US Naval Strategy in the 1980’s

*But were afraid to ask

Available now via the Newport Papers online – print version still TBD. Be forewarned, this is a huge document (34M worth) and will take a while to download.

This is an outstanding work by Dr. Hattendorf and Peter Swartz and has been long in the birthing process. It is the benchmark for the development of what many consider to be one of the most important documents in the modern US Navy’s history and, for better or worse, the benchmark strategy against which future strategies, including the current strategy, “A Cooperative Strategy for 21st Century Seapower” are compared and judged. Expanding one’s view, it also should be of interest to students of modern history, especially the latter days of the Cold War and its immediate aftermath. To quote the opening paragraph:

The decade of the 1980s was the decade of “the Maritime Strategy,” the U.S. Navy’s widely known and publicly debated statement that was associated with President Ronald Reagan’s buildup of American defense forces and Secretary of the Navy John Lehman’s efforts to create “the six-hundred-ship navy.” The strategy is most widely understood only in terms of the Navy’s January 1986 public statements published in the U.S. Naval Institute Proceedings and summarized in testimony that the Navy’s leaders had given to Congress. This volume is designed to complement and extend the previously published history of The Evolution of the U.S.Navy’s Maritime Strategy, 1977-1986, and to present publicly for the first time the detailed changes and developments that occurred during the decade in the five (now declassified) official versions of the strategy and three directly associated unclassified public statements by successive Chiefs of Naval Operations that were made in the years between 1982 and 1990.

Bottomline – this important document should be the part of any professional’s library.

Posted by SteelJaw in Strategy

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  • RickWilmes

    When I downloaded this I had to do a double take on the picture of the cover because I thought it was Annapolis. I noticed the buildings are similiar to USNA but the coast line was different. On the next page, the cover picture is described and to my surprise many of the buildings have the same names. A fact I did not know.

  • Rubber Ducky

    This is a magnum opus and great appreciation to my old friend Peter Swartz for his energy in keeping these records straight. Professor Hattendorf’s scholarly expertise makes the perfect combination.

    Well done and – on behalf of the profession – great thanks.

  • I think you are thinking like sukrat, but I think you should cover the other side of the topic in the post too…