Since the end of the Cold War there has been an increased willingness for countries to engage in coalition operations for peacekeeping, peace enforcement and resolving regional conflict. Coalition operations have increasingly become the primary focus of military activity and consequently nations have displayed an increased willingness to join coalitions of the willing on an ad hoc basis as a means of delivering their foreign and security policy. Since Vietnam, the American elite has been increasingly aware of the dangers of going it alone in military affairs and the legitimacy of its military operations overseas has become more dependent on persuading other states to join the U.S. as coalition partners. Indeed, for the U.S. coalition warfare is increasingly seen as the future of war. Coalition objectives will often be more focused on political than military objectives. The very existence of the coalition may become the imperative. This monograph highlights that effective senior military leadership in coalition operations demands a range of leadership skills that differ from those required when operating within a unilateral military environment where the commander is working to a unified civilian and military leadership. This examination of coalition operations and the attributes required by a successful senior coalition commander will be extremely valuable for future commanders as they prepare to operate in a multinational or coalition environment. In order to determine the leadership attributes of the successful coalition commander at the strategic and operational levels this monograph analyzes coalition operations. A definition of coalition operations is provided and a comparison is made between coalitions and alliances. The monograph determines the characteristics of coalition operations, looking specifically at the political and military nature of these operations. This monograph shows that coalition commanders face a series of challenges that are wide ranging in nature. This monograph determines that leading a coalition operation successfully demands a range of skills that are more consultative than they are direct in their approach. The effective commander will listen attentively to his coalition partners and will have a keen appreciation of their military capabilities as well as an understanding of their domestic political interests and motivations for being in the coalition. The capable coalition commander will be able to make decisions based on judgments about a wide range of competing priorities, not only those concerning his own nation, but also from those of the contributing nations. He will determine clear objectives that are in line with the political intent of the various nations within the coalition, and will ensure these are well understood by all participants. When necessary he will accept a degree of compromise to achieve the objective, but will ensure he does not compromise on the objective to achieve the victory. The effective commander will maintain a sharp focus on the central aim of the coalition and will work tirelessly to ensure the cohesion of the coalition is preserved.