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Kombinerad bekämpning i strid i bebyggelse
Swedish National Defence College.
2015 (Swedish)Independent thesis Basic level (university diploma), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Even though battles have been fought in built-up areas for a long time, there have not been any specific theories connected to it. As the world becomes increasingly urbanized, the problem of not having any complete theories with which to analyze military operations in urban terrain becomes bigger. This essay aims to contribute to the field of military theory by investigating if Robert Leonhard’s theory of combined arms can be used in analyzing such operations and to be able to explaining the outcome of them.


The main question posed in this essay is; to what extent can Leonhard’s theory explain the outcome of military operations in urban terrain? The method used to answer this question is a comparative method formed as a case study of two military operations in urban terrain, Operation Vigilant Resolve and Operation Phantom Fury, which both took place in Fallujah during the Iraq war 2004. The intention is to test Leonhard’s theory in both cases by assigning the theory several indicators, which are tested in each case.


The result shows that the indicators appeared almost equally in both cases, even though one of the operations was said to be a success and the other a failure. However during the occasions when the coalition force used combined arms, both operations achieved military effectiveness. The conclusion is that Leonhard’s theory of combined arms cannot be used to explain the outcome of military operations in urban terrain. The theory has not been verified and strengthened by empirical evidence, but weakened, which is the opposite of what should have been the result. Combined arms-theory cannot be used to assimilate lessons learned from military operations in urban terrain.


Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. , 42 p.
Keyword [sv]
kombinerad bekämpning, strid i bebyggelse, Robert Leonhard, urban terräng, Operation Phantom Fury, Operation Vigilant Resolve, combined arms
National Category
Social Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:fhs:diva-5506OAI: diva2:825978
Subject / course
War Studies Thesis
Educational program
Officersprogrammet (OP)
Available from: 2015-07-02 Created: 2015-06-24 Last updated: 2015-08-04Bibliographically approved

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