Unconventional Forms of War

Christian Malis

in The Oxford Handbook of War

Published in print January 2012 | ISBN: 9780199562930
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Politics & International Relations

Unconventional Forms of War

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This article tries to answer the following questions: to what extent do current unconventional forms of war give new opportunities to the challengers of the current international balance of power, be they ‘revisionist’ (aspiring) great powers or non-state players? What might be in the coming years the ‘chemical mix’ of conventional/unconventional forms of war? This is done by successively examining unconventional combatants, starting with the analysis of current concepts of asymmetry and irregular warfare; unconventional war on will, by analysing today's forms of psychological warfare; and unconventional weapons, by focusing primarily on the most promising emerging fields of cyber warfare and nano-warfare.

Keywords: balance of power; unconventional war; non-state players; great powers; psychological warfare; unconventional weapons

Article.  6233 words. 

Subjects: Politics ; International Relations

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