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These 5 Armies Of 2030 Will Redefine Warfare Forever

These 5 Armies Of 2030 Will Redefine Warfare Forever

Robert Farley


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Key point: Future technology will improve the lethality of ground forces.

The focus of ground combat operations has shifted dramatically since the end of the Cold War. Relatively few operations now involve the defeat of a technologically and doctrinally similar force, leading to the conquest or liberation of territory. Preparation for these operations remains important, but ground combat branches also have a host of other priorities, some (including counter-insurgency and policing) harkening back to the origins of the modern military organization.

What will the balance of ground combat power look like in 2030, presumably after the Wars on Terror and the Wars of Russian Reconsolidation (more to come on this idea below) shake out?

Predictions are hard, especially about the future, but a few relatively simple questions can help illuminate our analysis. In particular, three questions motivate this study:

• Does the army have access to national resources, including an innovative technological base?

• Does the army have sufficient support from political authorities, without compromising the organization’s independence?

• Does the army have access to experiential learning; does it have the opportunity to learn and innovate in real-world conditions?

Given these questions, most ground combat forces of 2030 will very much resemble the most lethal forces of today, with perhaps a couple of important changes.


The Indian Army is poised to stand alongside the world’s most elite ground combat forces. The Army has dealt with combat operations across the intensity spectrum, contending against a Maoist insurgency at home, a Pakistani-supported insurgency in Kashmir, and a variety of other, smaller domestic operations. At the same time, the Indian Army remains well-prepared for high intensity combat against Pakistan, having long accepted the need for realistic combat training. Altogether, these experiences have helped hone the force into an effective tool for New Delhi’s foreign and domestic policy.

Recommended: The Fatal Flaw That Could Take Down an F-22 or F-35.

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