Question: Who tops your reading list?
General Mattis: Colin Gray from the University of Reading is the most near-faultless strategist alive. Then there’s Sir Hew Strachan from Oxford, and Williamson Murray, the American. Those three are probably the leading present-day military theorists. You’ve got to know Sun-tzu and Carl von Clausewitz, of course. The Army was always big on Clausewitz, the Prussian; the Navy on Alfred Thayer Mahan, the American; and the Air Force on Giulio Douhet, the Italian. But the Marine Corps has always been more Eastern-oriented. I am much more comfortable with Sun-tzu and his approach to warfare.
According to a recent interview at HistoryNet with General James Mattis, the 11th commander of US Central Command (replacing General David Petraeus), Sun Tzu's Art of War came out on top of his (long) reading list. Here's an excerpt of the interview:
This is quite interesting to us given the fact that General Mattis is nicknamed "The Warrior Monk" since he studies military history and owns over 7,000 books in his personal library. He retired on May 22, 2013, after 41 years in the US Marine Corps.
Sun Tzu's Blog (updated often)
For readers of Sun Tzu's Art of War