Wesleyan portrait of Robert  Cassidy

Robert Cassidy

Andersen Fellow in Defense and Foreign Policy

Allbritton Center, CSPL 213


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BA Fitchburg State
MA Boston University
MA Tufts University
MA U.S. Naval War College
MA French War College
PHD Tufts University

Robert Cassidy

Bob Cassidy's scholarly work has generally explored strategy, irregular war, and military culture. Specifically, his research and publications include comparative studies on peace operations in Bosnia and Somalia, the Soviet and Russian wars in Afghanistan and Chechnya, and the post-2001 insurgencies in Afghanistan and Pakistan. His recent research and writing have focused on the absence of strategy and its implications for the West's wars against non-state sectarian militants. Colonel Cassidy, U.S. Army (retired) raises questions about the costs and consequences of a propensity for tactics over strategy for the United States and its partners. 


Bob Cassidy is a recently retired U.S. Army colonel with over three decades of experience studying and practicing the art of war and peace. He is conducting research on policy and strategy problems in America’s wars. His books include War, Will, and Warlords; Counterinsurgency and the Global War on Terror; and Peacekeeping in the Abyss. Colonel Cassidy has served as a special assistant to three senior generals, a special operations director of assessments, a special mission task force planner, a battalion commander, and a brigade operations officer. He has also served as a military intelligence sergeant in the 82nd Airborne Division. He has deployed to Iraq, Afghanistan, the Persian Gulf, and Grenada.

Bob Cassidy earned his Ph.D. from the Fletcher School, where he concentrated in security studies, diplomacy, and international law. He has master’s degrees in international relations and security studies from Boston University, the Fletcher School, and the U.S. Naval War College. Bob earned the Diplôme d'Études Supérieures de Défense from the École de Guerre. He has taught strategy and campaigning at the U.S. Naval War College and international relations at West Point. He was a Senior Fellow in the Chief of Naval Operations Strategic Studies Group. His military qualifications include ranger, jumpmaster, helicopter aviator, survival, evasion, resistance, escape, and Russian and French proficiency.

Academic Affiliations

Office Hours

Office hours are 9:00 to 12:00 on Tuesdays


Fall 2021
CSPL 116F - 01
Good Books on Bad Wars (FYS)

CSPL 315 - 01
Policy and War through Film

CSPL 375 - 01
Posse Student Life

Spring 2022
CSPL 330 - 01
Policy and Strategy

CSPL 375 - 01
Posse Student Life