Author Submission Guide

Consideration of Submitted Articles

Military Review will read and consider all submissions regardless of topic. Military Review is specifically looking for cutting-edge articles. As a result, well-researched, well-written, persuasive articles that espouse a view that differs from conventional or doctrinal views often find a home at Military Review.

Military Review makes no final commitments to accepting a manuscript until it has been thoroughly reviewed and, if required, revisions made that satisfy Military Review concerns or that conform to Military Review publication conventions.

Manuscripts having original ideas needing substantive revision to make them clearer or better organized are sometimes tentatively accepted for publication. The author must, however, agree to revise the manuscript with assistance from the Military Review staff. Final acceptance remains a Military Review prerogative based on the quality of the revised product.

When a manuscript has multiple authors, one point-of-contact needs to be clearly designated with the initial submission. This POC will receive all correspondence from Military Review editors, and will be responsible for conferring with all co-authors about edited versions, revisions, etc., before responding to the editors.

Target Audience. Military Review’s target audience includes senior noncommissioned officers, warrant officers, company and field grade officers, flag officers, scholars and journalists, Department of Defense and Department of State civilians, Congressional staff, and professionals in partner nations. Therefore, the journal seeks articles that address issues of concern to personnel who serve in either a command or staff capacity in a battalion, brigade, division, corps, task force, or above; who serve on a provincial reconstruction team or similar interagency working group; who participate in policy or doctrine formulation; and who provide a unique perspective on military affairs at the operational level.

Preferred Topics of Discussion. Military Review specifically seeks articles of a practical nature about issues associated with regional engagements or division- or corps- level campaign planning and execution. Nevertheless, this band of interest provides a broad range of possible topics that include: full spectrum operations; joint, interagency, intergovernmental, and multinational operations; sustainment; leader development; information support operations; mission command; conflict termination; military ethics; counterinsurgency; army profession and ethic; transition to the army of 2020; design the future force; sustainment; asymmetric warfare; training and education for the future; resiliency; comprehensive soldier fitness; human terrain system; advancing the institutional base; and enterprise and transformation. This list is not exhaustive. Find pertinent questions for some of these topics here.

Original Research or Practical Experience Preferred. Military Review prefers two types of articles: those based on original research from primary sources and those stemming from lessons learned via firsthand experience.

Responsibility for Accuracy and Reliability of Research. Authors are responsible for their manuscript’s accuracy and source documentation.

Writing Style

Military Review seeks articles that use precise, concise, direct language written in active voice. The thesis of the article should be clear, logically developed, and supported by sound reasoning and evidence.

When possible, authors should avoid the use of acronyms. If used, acronyms should be spelled out on first reference. Authors should avoid the use of arcane or extremely technical language that would be more appropriate for specialized journals.

Authors should write clearly and simply. Clarity, directness, and economy of expression are the main traits of professional writing, and they should never be sacrificed in a misguided effort to appear scholarly. Especially avoid “Pentagonese” and bureaucratic jargon.

Dullness of style is not synonymous with erudition; readers appreciate writing that is lively and engaging.

Artwork, Illustrations, and Photographs. Photographs are the best way to help tell a story and Military Review's preferred method. Original photographs in JPEG format with a resolution of 300 DPI or higher are required and must be accompanied by a cutline or description identifying the date, location, unit or personnel and description of the action.

Copyright sensitivities and the proliferation of the methods used to disseminate art, illustrations, and photographs without proper attribution require Military Review to insist that the origin of any art, illustrations, or photographs be identified. If artwork is copyrighted, the author must obtain copyright approvals and submit them to Military Review along with proposed manuscripts. As a general policy, Military Review will not use artwork it cannot attribute.

Article Formatting. Manuscripts should conform to the formatting as found in this manuscript sample. Authors should ensure there are no embedded macros in the document. The default settings in Microsoft Word are suitable. During the editing process, an author may be asked to use the “track changes” feature in Microsoft Word. A tutorial about this feature can be downloaded here.

Length of Manuscripts. The preferred length for feature articles is 2,000 to 3,000 words, or 10 to 15 typed, double-spaced pages. Manuscript length for “Insights” articles is 1,400 to 2,000 words, or 7 to 10 typed, double-spaced pages. Military Review will adjust article lengths based on available space in a given issue. Military Review reserves the right to edit submitted manuscripts to conform to overall space requirements.

Research Citation Guidelines. Military Review prefers manuscripts that are clearly the product of conscientious research, but no bibliography is necessary (nor used if submitted). Authors should document sources of information and ideas using endnotes, not footnotes.

Authors should strive to reduce the number of endnotes to the minimum consistent with honest acknowledgment of indebtedness, consolidating notes where possible. Lengthy explanatory endnotes are discouraged. Endnotes must contain complete citation of publication data; for Internet citations, include the date accessed. Military Review generally uses the conventions prescribed in Kate L. Turabian’s A Manual for Writers, 6th ed. (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1973). See sample endnotes on this page.

Authors should not use the automatic endnote feature of Microsoft Word, or any separate automatic endnote program, in the submitted manuscript. (This feature in Microsoft Word displays the endnote information when the cursor floats above the superscript endnote number.) The automatic formatting is not compatible with Military Review’s editing process or the graphic design software. Instead, authors should manually format the endnote numbers within the text in superscript, and then list the endnotes at the end of the manuscript. The endnotes should not be in the footer of the document. To assist in the editing process, authors should highlight in yellow the superscripted endnotes within the text. Manuscripts that have the automatic formatting will be returned to the author for correction. For a sample manuscript showing the correct format for endnotes, click here.

Biographical Sketch. Authors must enclose a brief personal biography. Include significant positions or assignments and civilian and military education that establish credibility with the subject. Authors can find examples of biographies in recent editions of Military Review, or see the biography at the end of this sample manuscript.

Security Review of Manuscript Submissions

Military Review functions under the public affairs principle of “security review at source.” Therefore, it is the responsibility of authors to ensure that manuscripts submitted for consideration receive the proper security review from appropriate authorities. This review should be done prior to the manuscript arriving at Military Review. In most cases, such a review should include a vetting by the organization’s security officer and public affairs officer.

Manuscripts by U.S. military personnel on active duty or civilian employees of the Department of Defense or service departments are subject to the official clearance requirements of Army Regulation 380-5. This requirement applies mainly to documents that treat the activities or capabilities of specific military organizations; established tactics, techniques, and procedures; or technical subjects, open discussion of which has significant potential for exposing information that should be regarded as controlled.

As a result of recent Army policy changes, most manuscripts discussing military subjects of a technical nature or a current organization, written by personnel working for the U.S. Government as an employee or contractor, must now arrive at Military Review with a memorandum for record verifying security review by the writer’s organization of assignment. This memorandum should contain the words “This manuscript has been cleared for open publication and unrestricted distribution” and be signed either physically or electronically by the reviewing security authorities. It may be sent in hard copy accompanying a manuscript; it may be sent electronically as an Adobe PDF file with appropriate signatures and accompanying electronic versions of the manuscripts; or it may be sent as an endorsement to a manuscript as part of a verifiable email chain that is electronically signed.

Manuscripts that are characterized as opinion pieces, historical pieces, or pieces that do not discuss or deal with the specific current capabilities or tactics, techniques, or procedures of military units or organizations need not submit such a memorandum for record. Prudence and sensitivity to the need to restrict information will dictate when such a memorandum is required.

On acceptance by Military Review, manuscripts requiring memorandums for record may be subject to further review and clearance by the Department of the Army in accordance with current regulatory requirements. A decision concerning additional clearance will be made on a case-by-case basis by the Military Review staff.

Documents submitted by non-U.S. Government employees or contractors, or by non-American authors who are not associated with or in the employ of the U.S. Government, do not require a memorandum for record verifying a security review.

Evaluation Criteria. Evaluation is, in great part, an unavoidably subjective process. However, in an effort to provide a standard of objectivity, Military Review provides its referees the questions below to help them evaluate manuscripts systematically.

  1. Is the article well written? Does it move logically from a clear thesis through a well developed argument using supporting evidence to yield persuasive conclusions?
  2. Does it use obscure or arcane language or overly complex sentence and paragraph structure that make the article difficult for the average reader to understand?
  3. Does the article use excessive acronyms?
  4. Is the article written in a straightforward manner or does it give the impression that it has been written to impress rather inform and persuade?
  5. Is the article cutting-edge, offering well-thought-out and well-researched alternate proposals, alternate viewpoints, or dissenting opinions with regard to issues of contemporary importance?
  6. Does the article show evidence of significant research using accepted academic standards?
  7. Is the article the product of original research?
  8. If the article is not a product of original research, is it an effective synthesis of existing research, and has it yielded significant insight?
  9. Does the article offer plausible solutions to a problem or issue?
  10. Is research backed up by careful citations in the endnotes?
  11. Does the manuscript show significant reliance on questionable or spurious sources in its endnotes?
  12. Does the author of the article know what she is talking about? If the evaluator is familiar with the issues being discussed in the article, does the article fairly represent the background facts and provide a credible examination of those issues?
  13. Does the article contribute anything new to the literature of military affairs or security issues? Does it say anything new?
  14. If the manuscript is a historical article, do the issues associated with the historical events evaluated have any direct relevance to current events or the conditions of the current security environment?

Review Process.Military Review will send an acknowledgment to the author upon receipt of manuscript. Submissions not forwarded to our referees for further consideration are generally returned to the author within three to four weeks. For submissions sent to our referees, the review process can take six to eight weeks from date of receipt.

How to Submit a Manuscript. Unsolicited article manuscripts are welcome; book reviews are by assignment only. Military Review encourages authors to submit their manuscript as an attachment to an introductory email. Please send your manuscript via email to the following inbox: usarmy.leavenworth.tradoc.mbx.military-review-public-em@mail.mil. The document should be saved in Microsoft Word (version 2007 or earlier) or some compatible file format.

An author should carefully edit his text before submission; include his name, address, daytime phone number, and email address; and tell us what word processing program he used. Military Review will not accept any faxed manuscripts.

Publication Agreement on Acceptance. Under our publication agreement, Military Review retains first publication rights for its English, Spanish, Portuguese, and any other editions of Military Review, including online editions. Except for time-sensitive articles, the normal time from acceptance to publication is six to eight months.

As an official Army publication, Military Review is not copyrighted; however, publication by Military Review gives the Combined Arms Center (Military Review’s higher headquarters) the right to reproduce and use the article for training and other official purposes.

Editors’ Prerogative. In the interests of length, security, clarity, and conformity with the stylistic standards of Military Review, the editor reserves the right to edit all manuscripts; however, editors will send substantive changes to the author for approval.

Protocol Concerning Simultaneous Submission to Separate Publications. Authors should not submit a manuscript to Military Review while it is being considered elsewhere; nor should they submit a manuscript if it has been published elsewhere or if it is available on the Internet.

As a matter of professional convention and courtesy, authors should not submit a manuscript to a second publication until after Military Review has fully reviewed it and decided whether or not to publish it. Military Review will generally accept or reject a manuscript within 60 days of its receipt.

Evidence that an article has been submitted elsewhere concurrent with submission to Military Review, or that it has already been published or will soon be, are grounds for denying the author future consideration for publication in Military Review.