Military Contingencies in Megacities and Sub-Megacities   [open pdf - 4MB]

"Urbanization is one of the most important megatrends of the 21st century. Consequently, the possibility of U.S. military involvement in a megacity or sub-megacity is an eventuality that cannot be ignored. After elucidating the nature of urbanization and developing a typology in terms of smart, fragile, and feral cities, we give consideration to the kinds of contingencies that the U.S. military, especially the Army, needs to think about and prepare for. Six kinds of contingencies have since been identified: humanitarian disaster relief; military support for civilian authorities in a restoration of order; intervention-for whatever reason-in a strategic city (also termed a critical or alpha city); military involvement in a city in the context of counter-insurgency; use of military force in a city in an interstate conflict; and containment or quarantine of an urban pandemic. Many debates arise concerning whether the appropriate focus should be predominantly on megacities or on smaller, but possibly more important, cities or perhaps on both. If the U.S. Army has the capacity to intervene militarily in a megacity, then it is likely that it could do the same in a smaller city. Consequently, the authors of this monograph focus on megacities and sub-megacities."

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