Geographies of Irregular Warfare

  • David Kilcullen
Part of the Advances in Military Geosciences book series (AMG)


Until the late twentieth century, Australian strategy was defined by the 1987 Defence of Australia (DOA) doctrine in which Australia’s strategic environment was defined by the continent’s geography and regional spatiality. DOA limited geography to its spatial, that is locational, aspect which led to a focus on a ‘sea-air gap’. From 1986 until 1999, though resourced only for a close-in layered defence of the sea-air gap, Australian joint expeditionary forces deployed numerous times outside its “area of direct military interest” for warfare, peacekeeping and other operations—reflecting Australia’s global strategic interests rather than its narrowly territorial defence requirements. The 9/11 attacks turned Australian thinking on strategic geography (then DOA) on its head. This chapter discusses the implications and some outcomes of this change, and poses some key questions for strategic thinkers in military geography, and defence and security more broadly.


Defence of Australia Strategic geography 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • David Kilcullen
    • 1
  1. 1.Future of WarNew America FoundationWashington, DCUSA

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