Why States Struggle to Develop a Military Cyber-Force
States may be willing to launch cyber-operations, but first they must build the capacity for such attacks—Smeets examines the opportunities and obstacles in this process.
‘A refreshing contribution to cyber scholarship that will resonate with military and intelligence professionals. With a methodical analysis of the technical, organizational and policy challenges governments must surmount to employ offensive cyber operations with precise effect, Smeets argues that few states conduct such operations because they are incredibly difficult. Pundits, commentators and policymakers must read this book to temper both their fears and expectations.’ — Emily O. Goldman, US Cyber Command
‘In No Shortcuts, Smeets does an exceptional job of exploring how truly difficult it is to be successful at cyber operations. It requires thoughtful buildup and vital experience that many countries lack. An important book for an evolving landscape.’ — Daniel Moore, author of Offensive Cyber Operations
‘If offensive cyber operations are cheap and easy, then cyberweapons should proliferate and cyberwar should escalate. Max Smeets demolishes these myths and reveals a more complicated, and more interesting, reality. While cyberweapons may not proliferate, No Shortcuts certainly will!’ — Jon R. Lindsay, Associate Professor, Georgia Institute of Technology, and author of Information Technology and Military Power
‘No Shortcuts provides an original and empirically-informed framework for understanding the practical work required for offensive cyber operations. Highly recommended for anyone seeking to understand the challenges of cyber effect operations and how those challenges can constrain state behaviour.’ — Rebecca Slayton, Associate Professor, Department of Science and Technology Studies, Cornell University
Max Smeets is Senior Researcher at the Center for Security Studies, Zurich; Director of the European Cyber Conflict Research Initiative; and an affiliate at Stanford’s Center for International Security and Cooperation. He publishes widely on cyber-statecraft, strategy and risk, including in The Washington Post, War on the Rocks and Slate.