The Continued Importance of Geographic Distance and Boulding's Loss of Strength Gradient

  title={The Continued Importance of Geographic Distance and Boulding's Loss of Strength Gradient},
  author={Kieran Webb},
  journal={Comparative Strategy},
  pages={295 - 310}
  • Kieran Webb
  • Published 24 October 2007
  • Economics
  • Comparative Strategy
The loss of strength gradient (LSG), which demonstrates the importance of geographic distance and the advantage of forward basing, has been under attack. Proximity is supposedly becoming less important for prevailing in war. It is a view that has been expressed not only by President George W. Bush but even by the person who devised the LSG, Kenneth Boulding. As a result, it is being used as reason for the withdrawal of U.S. forces back to the American homeland. However, this view is flawed… 
The Greater Horn of Africa: Geopolitical Aspects of the “Refugee Crisis”
  • B. Møller
  • Political Science
    Advances in African Economic, Social and Political Development
  • 2019
Moller offers an account of the refugee flows in and out of the Greater Horn of Africa with a special emphasis on the (classical or critical) geopolitical aspects thereof. Distances still matter,
The Spatial Structure of Transnational Human Activity
Recent studies have shown that the spatial structures of animal displacements and local-scale human motion follow Lévy flights. Whether transnational human activity (THA) also exhibits such a pattern
The Tyranny of Distance: Assessing and Explaining the Apparent Decline in U.S. Military Performance
There is a growing sense that US military effectiveness has been on the wane in recent years. Is this the case? If so, what are the reasons for the decay in American combat performance? We first
Terrain and war: Measuring topographic and land cover heterogeneity in interstate wars, 1816–2003
This article introduces the War Terrain Indices and Geospatial Representation Dataset (WARTIGER). This dataset addresses a dearth of quality terrain data in the study of interstate war outcomes. It
Defense Burden and the Effect of Others: From Neighbors to Allies
ABSTRACT This paper presents new evidence on the effects of neighbors and allies on defense burdens using a spatial econometrics model with panel data on 36 countries in Europe collected over 19
Alliance Proximity and Effectiveness of Extended Deterrence
ABSTRACT This article examines whether geographical proximity between defensive allies and a protégé increases the likelihood of successful extended general deterrence. I argue that proximate allies
Neorealism and Russia’s Ukraine policy, 1991-present
ABSTRACT What lies behind Russia’s Ukraine policy? This article places Russia’s current actions in Ukraine into a broader temporal and theoretical perspective. Drawing on the work of John
Complements or Substitutes : State Presence and the Power of Traditional Leaders
When considering the importance of domestic institutions for economic development, the focus has typically been on national institutions (e.g., the nation state). However, within sub-Saharan Africa,
Complements or Substitutes : How Institutional Choices Shape the Interaction Between Traditional Leaders and the State in Africa
Traditional leaders play an important role in local politics and rural development in Sub-Saharan Africa. This paper explores how the capacity of the central state conditions the power of traditional


On the Geography of Trade: Distance is Alive and Well
It has been widely argued that, with the decline in trade costs (e.g., transport and communication costs), the importance of distance has declined over time. This paper examines the evolution of the
1914-1918: The History of the First World War
"1914-1918", David Stevenson's history of the First World War, has been acclaimed as the definitive one-volume account of the conflict. In the summer of 1914 Europe exploded into a frenzy of mass
Afghanistan and the Future of Warfare: Implications for Army and Defense Policy
Abstract : The defense debate tends to treat Afghanistan as either a revolution or a fluke: either the "Afghan Model" of special operations forces (SOF) plus precision munitions plus an indigenous
A League of Airmen: U.S. Air Power in the Gulf War
Abstract : The war in the Persian Gulf was one of the most thoroughly reported and commented-on military actions in U.S. history. It etched a series of vivid media images in the public mind. Most of
Have International Transportation Costs Declined
July 1999 While the precise causes of post-war trade growth are not well understood, declines in transport costs top the lists of usual suspects. However, there is remarkably little systematic
So Many, So Much, So Far, So Fast: United States Transportation Command and Strategic Deployment for Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm
Abstract : In the fall of 1978, command post exercise Nifty Nugget simulated a fast breaking attack by the Warsaw Pact on North Atlantic Treaty Organization forces in Europe. The first
Project Air Force Analysis of the Air War in the Gulf. An Assessment of Strategic Airlift Operational Efficiency
Abstract : This report assesses strategic airlift operations during Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm. The research represents a portion of two larger research projects, one assessing the initial
The Falklands War
Abstract Even a partial analysis of information derived from the Falklands war suggests the need to examine key aspects of U.S. military policy, such as the nature of the All-Volunteer Force, the
Logistics in 2025: Consider It Done!
Abstract : Accessibility replaces anxiety in 2025 logistics. Confident that logistics systems will generate what they need when they need it, commanders of aerospace forces in the year 2025
The Lifeblood of War: Logistics in Armed Conflict
This is a study of the place of logistics in the military campaign. It uses a number of campaigns to illustrate how the problem of supplying forces has been tackled over the centuries.