Whither the RMA: Two Perspectives on Tomorrow's Army

  • June 01, 1994
  • COL Raoul Henri Alcala, Dr Paul Bracken

In April 1994, the Army War College's Strategic Studies Institute hosted its Fifth Annual Strategy Conference. The theme was "The Revolution in Military Affairs: Defining an Army for the 21st Century." After fourteen of the nation's leading defense scholars presented papers on the role of technology in warfare, Dr. Paul Bracken and Colonel Raoul Alcala concluded the conference by offering their views of the Army's future. Professor Bracken contends that the Army of the 21st century will be shaped by domestic concerns as much as by external threats to American security. While economic power has increased in importance in international relations, military power as traditionally conceived remains a dominant factor in determining the status of nations. Colonel Alcala holds that there is a connection between ideas and principles. He argues that doctrines will provide the basis for force structure, training, and weapons acquisition. Colonel Alcala maintains that the Army's ability to stay intellectually ahead of the technology will be, perhaps, its greatest challenge in the next century.