chapter  1
14 Pages

Space and grand strategy

ByJAMES J . WIRTZ

Strategy is the process whereby available resources are controlled and utilized in a militarily effective and politically compelling way to achieve national objectives, usually in the face of determined opposition. If the citizens of a nation are fortunate, their strategic thinking also will be informed by a coherent grand strategy which encompasses more than just plans to orchestrate the use of force. According to Edward Mead Earle, grand strategy “so directs and integrates the policies and armaments of the nation that the resort to war is rendered unnecessary or is undertaken with the maximum chances of victory.”1 Grand strategy harnesses or reflects political, economic, military technical, social, and demographic trends to advance national interests. It is a political statement about a nation’s memories and expectations because it reflects a vision of a people’s past, their purpose, and their future. Grand strategies always advance a plan to enhance the prospects of national survival, and most offer a culturally appealing vision of how to preserve or enhance national grandeur. Grand strategy uses the resources of the moment to shape the future so that it better suits national interests.