politics, strategy, Clausewitz, revolutionary war, absolute hostility, terrorism


In this article I analyze the relation between politics and strategy from the perspective of the notion of “reactive force” (as proposed by Nietzsche). The “reactive” interpretation of Clausewitz’s “formula” leads to an essential modification of the relation between politics and war. It could mean either the overturning of the formula, or an extension of the concept of war to non-conventional conflicts. The revolutionary strategists of the 20th century made constantly reference to this change. The Marxist-Leninist transformation of the notions of “enemy” and “war” have been rooted in the idea that a proletarian politics requires a war of liberation of reactive forces. In their view, politics is continuation of war, so ideology is necessary for the construction of a positive image of reactive forces, and for the incrimination of governmental and international politics. Though derived from the sentiment of an “absolute hostility” and founded in the distinction between friend and enemy (as Schmittians hold), this bad politics is still politics. In our time “reactive forces” of terrorism seem to play politics by making war against the “system”. They make distinction between combatants and non-combatants, and however they prefer to strike the civilians. But terrorism is not a new figure of politics and strategy: his rule of violence is only about tactics and crime.

Author Biography


Lector doctor, Departamentul de Științe Politice și Relații Internaționale, Facultatea de Filosofie și Științe Sociale și Politice, Universitatea din Iași.


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