7 x 10 paperback
452 pages
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On Contested Shores

The Evolving Role of Amphibious Operations in the History of Warfare

Edited by Timothy Heck and B. A. Friedman

DOI: 10.56686/9781732003149


Perhaps no prediction has been as consistently made—and as consistently wrong—as the imminent death of amphibious operations. Whatever the changes in warfare and technology, the necessity of amphibious force projection endures, long outliving those who claim its time has passed. Changes in how amphibious operations are conducted, however, are just as consistent. This essential contributed volume arrives at a vital point of transition. These essays highlight both changes and continuities, examining historical amphibious operations as early as the sixteenth century to the near future, describing both lesser-known cases and offering more nuanced views of famous campaigns, such as Gallipoli and Normandy. With the release of the U.S. Marine Corps’ Force Design 2030, this volume gives historians, theorists, and practitioners an opportunity to ground the coming changes in the historical context as they seek to find out what it takes to win on contested shores.

Timothy Heck is an artillery officer by trade. A graduate of several military staff schools, he recently finished his MA in the Department of War Studies at King’s College, London. His work currently focuses on the Red Army during and after the Second World War. 

B.A. Friedman is a military analyst and an officer in the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve. He holds a BA in history from The Ohio State University and an MA in national security and strategic studies from the U.S. Naval War College in Newport, Rhode Island. He is a founding member of the Military Writers Guild, the editor of 21st Century Ellis: Operational Art and Strategic Prophecy (2015), and the author of On Tactics: A Theory of Victory in Battle (2017).


Timothy Heck and B.A. Friedman

1.   An Amphibious Special Operation: The Night Attack on Porto Ercoletto, Tuscany, 2 June 1555 - Jacopo Pessina
2.   The 1574 Siege of Leiden during the Eighty Years’ War: Attack by Land, Relief by Sea - Samuel de Korte
3.   Amphibious Genesis: Thomas More Molyneux and the Birth of Amphibious Doctrine - Andrew Young
4.   The Delaware River Campaign of 1777: An Examination of an Eighteenth-Century Amphibious Operation - James R. McIntyre
5.   Vera Cruz, 1847 - J. Overton
6.   Courting Disaster: The Battle of Santa Rosa Island, 8–9 October 1861 - Edward J. Hagerty
7.   Korea, 1871: The U.S. Navy and Marine Corps in Great Power Competition - Benjamin Armstrong
8.   Estonian Amphibious Operations in the Eastern Baltic, 1918–20 - Eric A. Sibul
9.   The U.S. Marine Corps and Gallipoli - Angus Murray
10. Ambiguous Application: The Study of Amphibious Warfare at the Marine Corps Schools, 1920–33 - Bruce Gudmundsson
11. Operation Weserubung: Early Amphibious Multidomain Operations - James K. Greer
12. The Reich Strikes Back: German Victory in the Dodecanese, October–November 1943 - Jeffrey Schultz
13. Missing the Mark: Lessons in Naval Gunfire Support at Tarawa - James P. McGrath III
14. Soviet Strategic Attack and the Tactical Amphibious Failure at Merküla in 1944 - Andrew Del Gaudio
15. Learning the Lessons of Port-en-Bessin, 1944 - John D. Salt
16. German Naval Evacuations on the Eastern Front, 1943–45 - Gregory Liedtke
17. Against All Odds: Turkish Amphibious Operation in Cyprus, 20–23 July 1974 - Serhat Güvenç and Mesut Uyar
18. The Role of Amphibious Operations within the Multidomain Operational Construct: Background and Considerations - Keith D. Dickson
19. The Future Is Amphibious: The Role of Naval Special Warfare in the Great Power Competition - Sulakshana Komerath
20. Uncertainty, Maskirovka, and Militarism: Russian Perspectives and Amphibious Assault Potential in the Arctic Near Future
- Ellen A. Ahlness
21. Naval Strategy and the Future of Amphibious Operations - B.A. Friedman
22. The United Kingdom’s Approach to Amphibious Operations: From the Cold War to the Information Age - Kevin Rowlands
23. The U.S. Marine Corps and Advanced Base Operations: Past, Present, and Future - Walker D. Mills

B.A. Friedman and Timothy Heck

Selected Further Reading