Timely book provides extensive examination of coalition wars throughout history
In the summer of 2010, a unit of Danish soldiers known as ISAF-10 deployed to Afghanistan under British command. In Helmand Province, they tried to secure a fragile peace while dealing with the challenges of training an often apparently indifferent Afghan police and army. They were trying to ensure a functioning collaboration with the British despite insufficient military intelligence and divergent military cultures, and fell under frequent attack by an increasingly sophisticated and deadly Taliban.
In this remarkable book, author Kjeld Hald Galster tells their story, titled Crucial Coalition. He also looks at the broader picture, examining coalitions ranging from Ancient Greece to the Cold War. Exploring the millennia-long history of coalition warfare, he looks at what makes them work, and not work, the lessons they teach us, and how they reflect – and predict – the rise and downfall of the coalitions of the willing in Afghanistan and Iraq, and those yet to come.
Crucial Coalition also explores the following themes:
• The Cold War
• Military history
• The coalition style of warfare
• Political situations under which coalitions have been formed
• Reconciling political and religious differences among coalition partners
“This book is about the distinctive features of wars waged by coalitions across history,” says Galster. “It endeavors to extract lessons which might be useful in future multi-national military co-operation.”
Kjeld Hald Galster holds a Ph.D. in modern military history from the University of Copenhagen, Denmark, and an M.A. in War Studies from the Royal Military College of Canada/Collège Mililtaire Royal du Canada. He was educated at: University of Copenhagen; St Catherine’s College, University of Cambridge; Royal Military College of Canada/Collège Militaire Royal du Canada; Royal Danish Defence College; and Royal Danish Military Academy.
Kjeld Hald Galster is a senior researcher at the Royal Danish Defence College and an associate professor (external) of military history at the University of Copenhagen.
Born in Copenhagen, Denmark, he lives in West Zealand with his wife and daughter. He holds a Queen’s commission in, and has served with, The Royal Life Guards, Denmark; he is trained as a military linguist (Russian) and had served as a military advisor to the Danish Delegation to the OSCE.