Comparing Wars

Truda Gray, Brian Martin


Debates about the similarities and differences between the wars in Vietnam and Iraq have lacked agreed criteria for comparison. A set of 20 categories for comparing wars is proposed, grouped under causes/rationales, participants, methods/nature, scale/duration, and outcomes. This classification scheme is used to illustrate how commentators on Vietnam-Iraq press their cases: commonly, they select comparison categories favorable to their cases and ignore or downplay categories and evidence that do not support their case.

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JMSS is a publication of the Centre for Military, Security and Strategic Studies at the University of Calgary.

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