The above list, noted as being within this Wikiproject's scope, was a mess. It was overlong, had no sectioning at all, and included many entries that were not, in fact, "wars" at all. I attempted an extensive clean-up, including pruning some obvious non-wars, and creating three sections, at what I thought were fairly logical demarcations of American history: The Revolution, The Civil War, and World War II. If you take a look at the history of the article, you'll see that one user keeps reverting wholesale all of the work I did on the list. At first he did so with a really odd edit summary ("Considering the was no regime change from from the revolution to the Civil war, it doesn't make sense to add borders stating 'From the Revolution to the Civil War'. Had the Confederacy won the civil war, this would be appropriate"), but now he's simply reverting my work on the list without even the barest edit summary, as if I were vandalizing the article or something. I even took out the benign sections that seemed to offend him, but he still reverted sans edit summary. Please take a look at what I've been trying to do, and let me know if I'm far afield in my work. Lithistman (talk) 13:49, 20 June 2014 (UTC)
Don't be surprised by another editor reverting your massive un-discussed deletions to long standing content. Looking at Category:Wars involving the United States, I see many 'wars' that you seem to be deleting from the list. So the category structure does not support what you are doing. 'War' seems to be very broadly defined here. At the very least, you need to create another list with the items you do not call wars (and get some acceptance from others for the concept and the new name). Then each list must cross reference to the others. We need more/better lists not the simple removal of items from a list. Hmains (talk) 17:53, 20 June 2014 (UTC)
Then the title of the article needs to be changed. A "war" is a very specific thing. Perhaps it should be called "list of military conflicts" or something to that effect. The fact that the list is both overlong and overbroad has been a point of discussion at the talkpage. I simply endeavored to clean it up a bit, and make it more manageable. Did you actually look at the article history? At first, the user seemed to object only to the sections, but in the process of reverting those, he restored all the pruned content. His rationale made almost no sense as well. And finally, why does there need to be a comprehensive list of every single time the United States has been remotely involved (some engagements on the list didn't even involve direct use of the country's military) over its history? Lithistman (talk) 20:54, 20 June 2014 (UTC)
One further note: I actually HAVE discussed what I was planning on the talkpage. I did so in a thread that was actually started by you. I incorporated both your suggestion of sectioning, as well as the IP's suggestion of pruning the obvious non-wars from the list. Lithistman (talk) 21:08, 20 June 2014 (UTC)
I still say: "At the very least, you need to create another list with the items you do not call wars (and get some acceptance from others for the concept and the new name). Then each list must cross reference to the others. We need more/better lists not the simple removal of items from a list." Lists are good. Make them. Hmains (talk) 01:13, 21 June 2014 (UTC)
It's not that I do not call them wars, it's that they are, quite objectively, not wars, period. And my focus, for now, is this list, and making it good and accurate. Perhaps UV, the one who for a time insisted on simply reverting the entire pruning (but has now stopped doing so) would be interested in doing so. Lithistman (talk) 04:16, 21 June 2014 (UTC)
The definition of a "war" depends on who's in the discussion. A constitutional scholar may insist that the term only applies to conflicts involving declarations in compliance with the Constitution. However to someone in the military, except for some legal issues, "war" is largely about whether an organized, identifiable, armed group is trying to kill/capture you. The U.S. continues to be involved in conflicts that look to the person in combat like "war", produce casualties, change boundaries and governments, but will never meet the "declaration" criteria because there is no "state" overtly involved to be the subject of a "declaration".
It is certainly reasonable to identify, categorize, and/or list as a part/subset of the broader wars those which meet a "constitutional declaration". SBaker43 (talk) 21:33, 23 June 2014 (UTC)