Small Wars Journal has published the national security reading list composed by members of The Warlord Loop, a private listserv run by Colonel John Collins (ret.). You will find a wide-ranging list of titles in history, IR, strategic studies, military history, political philosophy and other fields recommended by experts and operators, soldiers and scholars and even a blogfriend or two. More than enough books to help fill out the empty shelves of your antilibrary.
The U.S. national security community contains a slew of superlative political, military, economic, sociological, technological, and other specialists, but comparably qualified generalists prepared to cherry pick their products, then produce integrated policies, plans, programs, and conduct operations that best suit this great Nation’s needs, are exceedingly scarce. The Warlord Loop’s 2012 reading list, which features interdisciplinary topics that cover the conflict spectrum from normal peacetime competition to what Herman Kahn’s classic On Thermonuclear War called a “wargasm,” is explicitly designed to help correct that imbalance.
Contributors include active and retired officials in executive and legislative branches of the U.S. Government, news media representatives, college professors, and military personnel from every service who range in rank from noncommissioned officers to four-star generals and admirals. Males, females, liberals, conservatives, Republicans, Democrats, nonpartisans, assorted age groups, and a few foreigners span the complete range of public opinion. The Warlord recently challenged them to identify two books apiece that would help practitioners and concerned citizens better understand increasingly complex problems and optional solutions despite mutating situational changes that now circle this globe at bewildering speed. A cross-section of responses appears below. Publishers, dates, and synopses are available on the Internet.
Brigadier General Chris Arney, USA (Retired), a professor of mathematics at West Point, focuses on information networks, modeling, intelligence processing, and artificial intelligence.
Mario Diani and Doug McAdam, Social Movements and Networks: Relational Approaches to Collective Action
Howard Steven Friedman Howard, The Measure of a Nation: How to Regain America’s Competitive Edge and Boost Our Global Standing
Lieutenant General David Barno, USA, (Retired), who saw combat in Grenada and Panama, commanded all U.S. and coalition forces in Afghanistan from 2003-2005. He now is a Senior Advisor and Senior Fellow at the Center for a New American Security.
Eliot Cohen, Supreme Command
Colin Gray, Another Bloody Century
Captain Sean Barrett, USMC, is a Fellow for the Marine Corps Director of Intelligence, Office of Intelligence and Analysis, Department of Treasury. He served in Iraq and Afghanistan as an Intelligence Officer.
Milton Friedman, Capitalism and Freedom
George Orwell, Animal Farm
Lieutenant Colonel Robert Bateman, USA, formerly Office of Net Assessment, currently in International Security Assistance Force Joint Command in Afghanistan.
Azar Gat, A History of Military Thought
John Lynn, ed., Feeding Mars, Logistics in Western Warfare, from the Middle Age to the Present [....]
Read the rest here.