Paradoxes of the Gray Zone

13 Pages Posted: 26 Feb 2016

See all articles by Hal Brands

Hal Brands

Duke University; Johns Hopkins University

Date Written: January 2016


The concept of "gray zone" conflict has generated significant attention and controversy recently, within both the U.S. government and the broader strategic studies community. This essay surfaces 8 key paradoxes, nuances, and contradictions of the gray zone, to shed light on a concept that is both deeply controversial, and deeply important to debates about the future of warfare and U.S. policy.

Suggested Citation

Brands, Hal, Paradoxes of the Gray Zone (January 2016). Available at SSRN: or

Hal Brands (Contact Author)

Duke University ( email )

100 Fuqua Drive
Durham, NC 27708-0204
United States

Johns Hopkins University ( email )

Baltimore, MD 20036-1984
United States

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics