Norman Friedman

Friedman, Norman. The Fifty Year War: Conflict and Strategy in the Cold War. Annapolis, MD: Naval Institute Press, 2000.

Wilson, NWCR 56.4, finds that the author presents "a broad look at the conflict between East and West.... Friedman contends that the Cold War was in fact a 'real war' fought in slow motion. It was also a war lost by the Soviet Union for sociopolitical, economic, and ideological reasons.... Friedman presents a new, provocative survey of the Cold War from a joint force perspective while keeping both sides of the Iron Curtain in mind."


Friedman, Norman. Terrorism, Afghanistan, and America's New Way of War. Annapolis, MD: Naval Institute Press, 2003.

Morgan, Parameters 34.3, finds that the author "has written an excellent book that seamlessly moves across" his topics. Friedman "covers systemic problems in the national counterterrorism apparatus.... [His] exposition on Afghanistan ... is ... compelling and well-researched." In discussing "a new American way of war," the book, written before the U.S. invasion of Iraq, "makes some incorrect predictions about similarities between Afghanistan and Iraq." Nevertheless, the author's observations "provide valuable insights into modern warfare as exemplified by Operation Enduring Freedom."

For Freedman, FA 83.1 (Jan.-Feb. 2004), the author "offers a comprehensive, workmanlike account of the first months of the war on terrorism.... His discussion of the disappointing Operation Anaconda in Afghanistan reveals the immense difficulty of taking on a shadowy enemy." Jonkers, AFIO WIN 33-03, 22 Aug. 2003, calls this work "a rich source on the complex interplay of history, policy and technology.... This is a wide-ranging, broadly argued, informative book."


Friedman, Norman. "World Naval Developments: Back in the Surveillance Game." U.S. Naval Institute Proceedings 133, no. 1 (Jan. 2007): 90-91.

The detection of a surfaced Chinese diesel-powered attack submarine reportedly within torpedo range of the aircraft carrier USS Kitty Hawk "can be read" as a "wake-up call" for U.S. antisubmarine warfare and "as proof that this capability has stagnated since the end of the Soviet threat."


Friedman, Norman. "World Naval Developments: Chinese Spied for Decades." U.S. Naval Institute Proceedings 125, no. 7 (Jul. 1999): 107.

"The question ... is whether the potential of [the vast Chinese] market blinded many U.S. companies and the U.S. administration itself to the liklihood that a stronger China would be a major strategic threat.... Will the fruits of espionage encourage the Chinese to imagine that they can take chances, such as attacking Taiwan, without fear of U.S. intervention, because their growing arsenal will deter us?"


Friedman, Norman. "World Naval Developments: Satellite Reconnaissance Upgraded." U.S. Naval Institute Proceedings 121, no. 12 (Dec. 1995): 91-92.

This article essentially declares victory for the tactical intelligence side in the tactical-strategic dichotomy that existed through the Cold War years in the design of U.S. reconnaissance satellites. "The next-generation U.S. photo-reconnaissance satellite, to be launched later this decade, will be modified -- given somewhat less resolution and a higher area-coverage rate -- to provide near real-time battlefield information. The change is the culmination of almost two decades of change, led by the U.S. Navy." An interesting admission by this author of The Naval Institute Guide to World Naval Weapons Systems, is that the Tomahawk cruise missile was bought for ship vs. ship use in the absence of an effective targeting system.

[MI/90s; Recon/Sats/Arts/95]

Friedman, Norman. "World Naval Developments: Spies . . . and All That." U.S. Naval Institute Proceedings 122, no. 1 (Jan. 1995): 90-92.

Friedman expresses some doubt that Soviet disinformation disseminated in CIA intelligence analyses caused the United States to overspend on military hardware. He notes that "it seems unlikely that the Soviets would have mounted a disinformation campaign designed to cause the United States to spend more on defense, and particularly on better weaponry.... Moreover, the CIA's power over U.S. policy is quite limited. The operational requirements that shape airplanes like the F- 22 are based on assessments by the defense intelligence arms."


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