This is a past event
Converse Hall, Cole Assembly Room
  • Open to the Public

This event is free and open to the public.

This lecture will be presented by Dr. Robert Cassidy of Wesleyan University. It will enlist aspects from traditional and alternative theories of war to examine how the United States failed to craft a viable strategy after 9/11. The lecture will examine how the Bush administration's initial focus on strikes, raids and renditions created the illusion of strategy in the post-9/11 wars. This emphasis on tactics to the detriment of strategy did not improve America's national security but worsened it. The talk will address how a weaker adversary in Afghanistan won against an ostensibly superior United States.

Col. Robert Cassidy, U.S. Army (retired), teaches courses on strategy and war at Wesleyan University and has studied and practiced strategy and war for four decades. He has a doctorate from the Fletcher School of Tufts University. He previously taught strategy at the U.S. Naval War College and international relations at West Point. Cassidy's scholarly work explores strategy, wars of asymmetry and irregular warfare. Cassidy has published three books: War, Will, and Warlords (2012); Counterinsurgency and the Global War on Terrorism (2008); and Peacekeeping in the Abyss (2004).

Bob has served as a special assistant to three generals, a special operations director of assessments, special mission task force planner, battalion commander and brigade operations officer. He also served as a sergeant in the 82nd Airborne Division. He has served in combat or contingency operations in Afghanistan, Grenada, Haiti, Iraq and the Persian Gulf. His military qualifications include strategist, ranger, jumpmaster, rotary-wing aviator and SERE-C (survival, evasion, resistance, and escape). He is proficient in Russian and French.

For more information, contact Scott Smitson @

This event is being made possible by funding from the Department of Political Science at Amherst College, The Karl Loewenstein Fund, The Chamberlain Project and the Lurcy Endowment.

Contact Info

Stephen Laizer
(413) 542-2318
Please call the college operator at 413-542-2000 or e-mail if you require contact info