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Encyclopedia > Military strategy
Military stratagem in the Battle of Waterloo.
Military stratagem in the Battle of Waterloo.

Military strategy is a collective name for planning the conduct of warfare. Derived from the Greek strategos, strategy was seen as the "art of the general". Military strategy deals with the planning and conduct of campaigns, the movement and disposition of forces, and the deception of the enemy. The father of modern strategic study, Carl von Clausewitz, defined military strategy as "the employment of battles to gain the end of war." Hence, he gave the preeminence to political aims over military goals, ensuring civilian control of the military. Military strategy was one of a triumvirate of "arts" or "sciences" that govern the conduct of warfare; the others being tactics, the execution of plans and manœuvering of forces in battle, and logistics, the maintenance of an army. The border line between strategy and tactics is blurred and sometimes categorisation of a decision is a matter of almost personal opinion. A destroyer patrols local space around its attached carrier in Nexus: The Jupiter Incident. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (800x910, 42 KB)Map of force movements and major engagements during the Waterloo Campaign, June 15-18, 1815. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (800x910, 42 KB)Map of force movements and major engagements during the Waterloo Campaign, June 15-18, 1815. ... Combatants First French Empire Seventh Coalition: United Kingdom Kingdom of Prussia Kingdom of the United Netherlands Kingdom of Hanover Duchy of Nassau Duchy of Brunswick Commanders Napoleon Bonaparte, Michel Ney Duke of Wellington, Gebhard von Blücher Prince William of Orange Strength 73,000 67,000 Coalition 60,000 Prussian... For other uses, see War (disambiguation). ... The term strategos (plural strategoi; Greek στρατηγός) is used in Greek to mean general. In the hellenistic and Byzantine Empires the term was also used to describe a military governor. ... This does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... Carl Philipp Gottfried von Clausewitz (IPA: ) (June 1, 1780[1] – November 16, 1831) was a Prussian soldier, military historian and influential military theorist. ... U.S. President Abraham Lincolns active involvement in the conduct of the American Civil War, which frequently involved pressing his generals to undertake more aggressive actions, set a precedent for the power of the civilian Commander-in-Chief. ... Military tactics (Greek: TaktikÄ“, the art of organizing an army) are the collective name for methods for engaging and defeating an enemy in battle. ... Look up Logistics in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...

Contents

Fundamentals of military strategy

Armenian foot soldiers wearing the traditional Mithraic caps.
Armenian foot soldiers wearing the traditional Mithraic caps.
"Do not repeat the tactics which have gained you one victory, but let your methods be regulated by the infinite variety of circumstances."Sun Tzu

Strategy and tactics are closely related. Both deal with distance, time and force but strategy is large scale while tactics are small scale. Originally strategy was understood to govern the prelude to a battle while tactics controlled its execution. However, in the world wars of the 20th century, the distinction between manoeuvre and battle, strategy and tactics, became blurred. Tactics that were once the province of a company of cavalry would be applied to a panzer army. It is often said that the art of strategies defines the goals to achieve in a military campaign, while tactics defines the methods to achieve these goals. Strategic goals could be "We want to conquer area X", or "We want to stop country Y's expansion in world trade in commodity Z"; while tactical decisions range from "We're going to do this by a naval invasion of the North of country X", "We're going to blockade the ports of country Y", all the way down to "C Platoon will attack while D platoon provides fire cover". Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... Sun Tzu (孫子 also commonly written in pinyin: Sūn Zǐ) was the author of The Art of War, an influential ancient Chinese book on military strategy (for the most part not dealing directly with tactics). ... Military tactics (Greek: TaktikÄ“, the art of organizing an army) are the collective name for methods for engaging and defeating an enemy in battle. ... A world war is a war affecting the majority of the worlds major nations. ... (19th century - 20th century - 21st century - more centuries) Decades: 1900s 1910s 1920s 1930s 1940s 1950s 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s As a means of recording the passage of time, the 20th century was that century which lasted from 1901–2000 in the sense of the Gregorian calendar (1900–1999... A company is a military unit, typically consisting of 100-200 soldiers. ... Not to be confused with Golgotha, which was called Calvary. ... Panzer IV Ausf. ... This article or section is in need of attention from an expert on the subject. ...


In its purest form, strategy dealt solely with military issues. In earlier societies, a king or political leader was often the same person as the military leader. If he was not, the distance of communication between the political and the military leader was small. But as the need of a professional army grew, the bounds between the politicians and the military came to be recognized. In many cases, it was decided that there was a need for a separation. As French statesman Georges Clemenceau said, "war is too important a business to be left to soldiers." This gave rise to the concept of the grand strategy which encompasses the management of the resources of an entire nation in the conduct of warfare. In the environment of the grand strategy, the military component is largely reduced to operational strategy -- the planning and control of large military units such as corps and divisions. As the size and number of the armies grew and the technology to communicate and control improved, the difference between "military strategy" and "grand strategy" shrank. Georges Clemenceau, by Nadar. ... Grand strategy is military strategy considered at the level of the movement and use of an entire nation state or empires resources. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged into Operational art. ... A corps (plural same as singular; a word that migrated from the French language, pronounced IPA: (cor), but originating in the Latin corpus, corporis meaning body) is either a large military unit or formation, an administrative grouping of troops within an army with a common function (such as artillery or... Symbol of the Polish 1st Legions Infantry Division in NATO code A division is a large military unit or formation usually consisting of around ten to twenty thousand soldiers. ...


Fundamental to grand strategy is the diplomacy through which a nation might forge alliances or pressure another nation into compliance, thereby achieving victory without resorting to combat. Another element of grand strategy is the management of the post-war peace. As Clausewitz stated, a successful military strategy may be a means to an end, but it is not an end in itself. There are numerous examples in history where victory on the battlefield has not translated into long term peace, security or tranquility. Diplomat redirects here. ...


Principles of military strategy

Many military strategists have attempted to encapsulate a successful strategy in a set of principles. Sun Tzu defined 13 principles in his The Art of War while Napoleon listed 115 maxims. American Civil War General Nathan Bedford Forrest required only one: "get there firstest with the mostest". The fundamental concepts common to most lists of principles are[citation needed]: Sun Tzu (孫子 also commonly written in pinyin: Sūn Zǐ) was the author of The Art of War, an influential ancient Chinese book on military strategy (for the most part not dealing directly with tactics). ... The Art of War is a Chinese military treatise written during the 6th century BC by Sun Tzu. ... For the World War II general, see Nathan Bedford Forrest III. Nathaniel Bedford Forrest (July 13, 1821–October 29, 1877) was a Confederate Army general during the American Civil War. ...

  1. The Objective
  2. Offense
  3. Cooperation
  4. Concentration (Mass)
  5. Economy
  6. Manoeuvre
  7. Surprise
  8. Security
  9. Simplicity

Which are reflected in the United States Army's United States Army Field Manual (FM-3) of Military Operations (sections 4-32 to 4-39) as: U.S. Army Field Manuals are published by the United States Armys Army Publishing Directorate. ...

  1. Objective (Direct every military operation towards a clearly defined, decisive, and attainable objective)
  2. Offensive (Seize, retain, and exploit the initiative)
  3. Mass (Concentrate combat power at the decisive place and time)
  4. Economy of Force (Allocate minimum essential combat power to secondary efforts)
  5. Maneuver (Place the enemy in a disadvantageous position through the flexible application of combat power)
  6. Unity of Command (For every objective, ensure unity of effort under one responsible commander)
  7. Security (Never permit the enemy to acquire an unexpected advantage)
  8. Surprise (Strike the enemy at a time, at a place, or in a manner for which he is unprepared)
  9. Simplicity (Prepare clear, uncomplicated plans and clear, concise orders to ensure thorough understanding)

Some strategists assert that adhering to the fundamental principles guarantees victory while others claim war is unpredictable and the general must be flexible in formulating a strategy. Field Marshal Count Helmuth von Moltke expressed strategy as a system of "ad hoc expedients" by which a general must take action while under pressure. These underlying principles of strategy have survived relatively unscathed as the technology of warfare has developed. Graf Moltke Helmuth Karl Bernhard von Moltke (October 26, 1800 - April 24, 1891), who became Helmuth Graf von Moltke in 1870, was a famous Prussian general. ...


Strategy (and tactics) must constantly evolve in response to technological advances. A successful strategy from one era tends to remain in favor long after new developments in military weaponry and matériel have rendered it obsolete. World War I, and to a great extent the American Civil War, saw Napoleonic tactics of "offense at all costs" pitted against the defensive power of the trench, machine gun and barbed wire. As a reaction to her WWI experience, France entered World War II with a purely defensive doctrine, epitomized by the "impregnable" Maginot Line, but only to be completely circumvented by the German blitzkrieg. “The Great War ” redirects here. ... Combatants United States of America (Union) Confederate States of America (Confederacy) Commanders Abraham Lincoln, Ulysses S. Grant Jefferson Davis, Robert E. Lee Strength 2,200,000 1,064,000 Casualties 110,000 killed in action, 360,000 total dead, 275,200 wounded 93,000 killed in action, 258,000 total... For other uses, see Napoleon (disambiguation). ... Trench warfare is a form of war in which both opposing armies have static lines of defence. ... A machine gun is a fully-automatic firearm that is capable of firing bullets in rapid succession. ... A selection of forms of barbed wire. ... Combatants Allied powers: China France Great Britain Soviet Union United States and others Axis powers: Germany Italy Japan and others Commanders Chiang Kai-shek Charles de Gaulle Winston Churchill Joseph Stalin Franklin Roosevelt Adolf Hitler Benito Mussolini Hideki Tōjō Casualties Military dead: 17,000,000 Civilian dead: 33,000... The Maginot Line (IPA: [maÊ’inoː], named after French minister of defence André Maginot) was a line of concrete fortifications, tank obstacles, machine gun posts and other defences which France constructed along its borders with Germany and with Italy, in the light of experience from World War I, and... The defining characteristic of what is commonly known as Blitzkrieg is that it is a highly mobile form of mechanized warfare. ...


Development of military strategy

Fortifications form a crucial component of military strategy. Shown here is the Chittorgarh Fort in Rajasthan, India.
Fortifications form a crucial component of military strategy. Shown here is the Chittorgarh Fort in Rajasthan, India.

Image File history File linksMetadata Chittorgarh_Fort. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Chittorgarh_Fort. ... Table of Fortification, from the 1728 Cyclopaedia. ... Chittorgarh Fort A view of Chittorgarh Fort Chittorgarh Fort is a massive and majestic fort situated on a hilltop near Chittorgarh town in Rajasthan state in India. ... , Rājasthān (DevanāgarÄ«: राजस्थान, IPA: )   is the largest state of the Republic of India in terms of area. ...

Early military strategy

The principles of military strategy can be found as far back as 500 BC in the works of Sun Tzu and Chanakya. The campaigns of Alexander the Great, Chandragupta Maurya, Hannibal, Qin Shi Huang, Julius Cæsar, Zhuge Liang, and Khalid ibn al-Walid demonstrate strategic planning and movement. Mahan describes in the preface to The Influence of Sea Power upon History how the Romans used their sea power to effectively block the sea lines of communication of Hannibal with Carthage; and so via a maritime strategy achieved Hannibal's removal from Italy, despite never beating him there with their legions. Centuries: 7th century BC - 6th century BC - 5th century BC Decades: 550s BC - 540s BC - 530s BC - 520s BC - 510s BC - 500s BC - 490s BC - 480s BC - 470s BC - 460s BC - 450s BC Events and Trends 509 BC - Foundation of the Roman Republic 508 BC - Office of pontifex maximus created... Sun Tzu (孫子 also commonly written in pinyin: Sūn Zǐ) was the author of The Art of War, an influential ancient Chinese book on military strategy (for the most part not dealing directly with tactics). ... Chānakya (Sanskrit: चाणक्य) (c. ... For the film of the same name, see Alexander the Great (1956 film). ... Allegiance: Maurya Dynasty Rank: Emperor Succeeded by: Bindusara Maurya Reign: 322 BC-298 BC Place of birth: Indian subcontinent Chandragupta Maurya (Sanskrit: चन्द्रगुप्त मौर्य), sometimes known simply as Chandragupta (born c. ... Hannibal, the son of Hamilcar Barca, (247 BC – ca. ... The monarch known now as Qin Shi Huang (Chinese: ; Pinyin: ; Wade-Giles: Chin Shih-huang) (November / December 260 BCE – September 10, 210 BCE), personal name Yíng Zhèng, was king of the Chinese State of Qin from 247 BCE to 221 BCE (officially still under the Zhou Dynasty... For other uses, see Julius Caesar (disambiguation). ... This is a Chinese name; the family name is Zhuge (諸葛) Zhuge Liang (181 - 234) was one of the greatest Chinese strategists of the Three Kingdoms period, as well as a statesman, engineer, scholar, and inventor. ... Khālid ibn al-WalÄ«d (592-642) (Arabic: خالد بن الوليد) also known as Sayf-Allah al-Maslul (the Drawn Sword of God or Sword of Allah), was one of the two famous Arab generals during the Muslim conquests of the 7th Century. ... Rear Admiral Alfred Thayer Mahan (September 27, 1840–December 1, 1914) was a United States Navy officer, geostrategist, and educator. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Ancient Rome was a civilization that grew from a small agricultural community founded on the Italian Peninsula circa the 9th century BC to a massive empire straddling the Mediterranean Sea. ... Naval warfare is combat in and on seas and oceans. ... Sea lines of communication (abbreviated as SLOC) is a term describing the primary maritime trade routes between ports. ... Hannibal, the son of Hamilcar Barca, (247 BC – ca. ... Roman Carthage with former military harbor Carthage (Greek: , Latin: , from the Phoenician meaning new town; Arabic: ) refers both to an ancient city in Tunisia and to the civilization that developed within the citys sphere of influence. ...


In 1520 Niccolò Machiavelli's Dell'arte della guerra (Art of War) dealt with the relationship between civil and military matters and the formation of the grand strategy. In the Thirty Years' War, Gustavus Adolphus of Sweden demonstrated advanced operational strategy that led to victories in Holy Roman Empire area. Year 1520 (MDXX) was a leap year starting on Sunday (link will display the full calendar) of the Julian calendar. ... Niccolò di Bernardo dei Machiavelli (May 3, 1469 – June 21, 1527) was an Italian political philosopher, musician, poet, and romantic comedic playwright. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... Gustav II Adolf King of Sweden Gustav II Adolf (also known as Gustaf Adolf the Great (Swedish Gustav Adolf den store, Latin Gustavus Adolphus Magnus), or Gustavus II Adolphus; December 9, 1594 – November 6, 1632 O.S.), widely known by the Latinized name Gustavus Adolphus and referred to by contemporary... The extent of the Holy Roman Empire around 1630, superimposed over modern European state borders Capital None Language(s) Latin, German, many others Religion Roman Catholicism Government Monarchy Emperor  - 962–967 Otto I  - 973–983 Otto II  - 996–1002 Otto III  - 1014– 1024 Henry II  - 1027–1039 Conrad II  - 1046...


It was not until the 18th century that military strategy was subjected to serious study. In the Seven Years' War (1756-1763), Frederick the Great improvised a "strategy of exhaustion" (see Attrition warfare) to hold off his opponents and conserve his Prussian forces. Assailed from all sides by France, Austria, Russia and Sweden, Frederick exploited his central position which enabled him to move his army along interior lines and concentrate against one opponent at a time. Unable to achieve victory, he was able to stave off defeat until a diplomatic solution was reached. Frederick's "victory" led to great significance being placed on "geometric strategy" which emphasized lines of manoeuvre, awareness of terrain and possession of critical strongpoints. (17th century - 18th century - 19th century - more centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 18th century refers to the century that lasted from 1701 through 1800. ... Combatants Kingdom of Prussia Kingdom of Great Britain Electorate of Hanover Iroquois Confederacy Kingdom of Portugal Electorate of Brunswick Electorate of Hesse-Kassel Philippines Archduchy of Austria Kingdom of France Empire of Russia Kingdom of Sweden Kingdom of Spain Electorate of Saxony Kingdom of Naples and Sicily Kingdom of Sardinia... 1756 was a leap year starting on Thursday (see link for calendar). ... 1763 was a common year starting on Saturday (see link for calendar). ... Frederick II (German: ; January 24, 1712 – August 17, 1786) was a King of Prussia (1740–1786) from the Hohenzollern dynasty. ... This article is about the military strategy. ... Motto Suum cuique Latin: To each his own Prussia at its peak, as leading state of the German Empire Capital Königsberg, later Berlin Government Duke1  - 1525–68 Albert I (first)  - 1688–1701 Frederick III (last) King1  - 1701–13 Frederick I (first)  - 1888–1918 William II (last) Prime Minister1,2... Interior lines is a strategy of warfare that is based on the concept that lines of movement within an area are shorter than those on the outside. ...


Genghis Khan and the Mongols

As a counterpoint to European developments in the strategic art, the Mongol Emperor Genghis Khan provides a useful example. Genghis' successes, and those of his successors, were based upon manoeuvre and terror. The point of Genghis' strategic assault was nothing less than the psychology of the opposing population. By a steady and meticulous implementation of this strategy, Genghis and his descendants were able to conquer most of Eurasia. Expansion of the Mongol Empire Another picture of Mongol Empire The Mongol Empire (Mongolian: Их Монгол Улс, literally meaning Greater Mongol Nation; 1206–1405) was the largest contiguous land empire in history, covering over 33 million km² [1] (12 million square miles) at its peak, with an estimated population of over 100 million... For other uses, see Genghis Khan (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Eurasia (disambiguation). ...


The building blocks of Genghis' army and his strategy were his tribal levies of mounted archers and (just as important) the vast horse-herds of Mongolia. Each archer had at least one extra horse; (it was an average five horses per man) thus the entire army could move with incredible rapidity. Moreover since horse milk and horse blood were the staples of the Mongolian diet, Genghis' horse-herds functioned not just as his means of movement but also as his logistical tail. All other necessities could be foraged and plundered. It was not until well into the 20th century that any army was able to match the rapidity of deployment of Genghis' armies.


Compared to the armies of Genghis, all other armies were heavy and comparatively immobile. Through manoeuver and continuous assault, Chinese, Persian, Arab and Eastern European armies could be stressed until they broke, and then annihilated in pursuit.


When confronted with a fortified city, the Mongol imperatives of manoeuver and speed required that it be quickly subdued. Here the fear engendered by the awful reputation of the Mongolians helped. So too did primitive biological warfare. A trebuchet or other type of ballista weapon would be used to launch dead animals and corpses into a barricaded city, spreading disease and death among the inhabitants. If a particular town or city displeased the Mongolian Khan, everyone in the city would be killed to set an example for all other cities. This could be called a form of psychological warfare. Trebuchet at Château des Baux, France. ... The U.S. Department of Defense defines psychological warfare (PSYWAR) as: The planned use of propaganda and other psychological actions having the primary purpose of influencing the opinions, emotions, attitudes, and behavior of hostile foreign groups in such a way as to support the achievement of national objectives. ...


Note that of the above list of strategic terms, even this elementary summary indicates that the Mongols strategy was directed towards an objective (that schwerpunkt (main focus) being nothing less than the psychology of the opposing population) achieved through the offensive; the offensive was characterized by concentration of forces, manoeuvre, surprise and simplicity. Blitzkrieg relies on close co-operation between infantry and panzers (tanks). ...


Napoleonic strategy

The French Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars that followed revolutionized military strategy. The impact of this period was still to be felt in the American Civil War and the early phases of World War I. With the advent of cheap small arms and the rise of the drafted citizen soldier, armies grew rapidly in size to become massed formations. This necessitated dividing the army first into divisions and later into corps. Along with divisions came divisional artillery; light-weight, mobile and with great range and firepower. The rigid formations of pikemen and musketeers firing massed volleys gave way to light infantry fighting in skirmish lines. The French Revolution (1789–1815) was a period of political and social upheaval in the political history of France and Europe as a whole, during which the French governmental structure, previously an absolute monarchy with feudal privileges for the aristocracy and Catholic clergy, underwent radical change to forms based on... Combatants Austria[1] Portugal Prussia[1] Russia[2] Sicily  Spain[3]  Sweden United Kingdom[4] French Empire Holland Italy Naples [5] Duchy of Warsaw Bavaria[6] Saxony[7] Denmark-Norway [8] Commanders Archduke Charles Prince Schwarzenberg Karl Mack von Leiberich Gebhard von Blücher Duke of Brunswick â€  Prince of Hohenlohe... Symbol of the Polish 1st Legions Infantry Division in NATO code A division is a large military unit or formation usually consisting of around ten to twenty thousand soldiers. ... A corps (plural same as singular; a word that migrated from the French language, pronounced IPA: (cor), but originating in the Latin corpus, corporis meaning body) is either a large military unit or formation, an administrative grouping of troops within an army with a common function (such as artillery or... For other uses, see Artillery (disambiguation). ... A pike is a pole weapon once used extensively by infantry principally as a counter-measure against cavalry assaults. ... For other uses of this term, see Musketeer (disambiguation). ... Traditionally light infantry (or skirmishers) were soldiers whose job was to provide a skirmishing screen ahead of the main body of infantry, harassing and delaying the enemy advance. ...


Napoleon I of France took advantage of these developments to pursue a brutally effective "strategy of annihilation" that cared little for the mathematical perfection of the geometric strategy. Napoleon invariably sought to achieve decision in battle, with the sole aim of utterly destroying his opponent, usually achieving success through superior manouevre. As ruler and general he dealt with the grand strategy as well as the operational strategy, making use of political and economic measures. Napoléon I, Emperor of the French (born Napoleone di Buonaparte, changed his name to Napoléon Bonaparte)[1] (15 August 1769; Ajaccio, Corsica – 5 May 1821; Saint Helena) was a general during the French Revolution, the ruler of France as First Consul (Premier Consul) of the French Republic from...


While not the originator of the methods he used, Napoleon very effectively combined the maneuver and battle stages into one event. Before this, General Officer had considered the approach to battle a separate event. However, Napoleon used the maneuver to battle to dictate how and where the battle would progress. The Battle of Austerlitz was a perfect example of this maneuver. Napoleon withdrew from a strong position to draw his opponent forward and tempt him into a flank attack, weakening his center. This allowed the French army to split the allied army and gain victory. General is a military rank, in most nations the highest rank, although some nations have the higher rank of Field Marshal. ... Combatants French Empire Russian Empire Austrian Empire Commanders Napoleon I Alexander I Francis II Strength 65,000[1] 73,000[2] Casualties 1,305 dead, 6,940 wounded, 573 captured, 1 standard lost[3] 15,000 dead or wounded, 12,000 captured, 180 guns lost, 50 standards lost[3] War...


Napoleon used two primary strategies for the approach to battle. His "Maneuver De Derrière" was intended to place the French Army across the enemy's lines of communications. This forced the opponent to either march to battle with Napoleon or attempt to find an escape route around the army. By placing his army into the rear, his opponents supplies and communications would be cut. This had a negative effect on enemy morale. Once joined, the battle would be one in which his opponent could not afford defeat. This also allowed Napoleon to select multiple march routes into a battle site. Initially, the lack of force concentration helped with foraging for food and sought to confuse the enemy as to his real location and intentions. This strategy, along with the use of forced marches created a morale bonus that played heavily in his favor.


The "indirect" approach into battle also allowed Napoleon to disrupt the linear formations used by the allied armies. As the battle progressed enemy committed their reserves to stabilize the situation, Napoleon would suddenly release the flanking formation to attack the enemy. His opponents, being suddenly confronted with a new threat and with little reserves, had no choice but to weaken the area closest to the flanking formation and draw up a battle line at a right angle in an attempt to stop this new threat. Once this had occurred, Napoleon would mass his reserves at the hinge of that right angle and launch a heavy attack to break the lines. The rupture in the enemy lines allowed Napoleon's cavalry to flank both lines and roll them up leaving his opponent no choice but to surrender or flee. “Flanking” redirects here. ...


The second strategy used by Napoleon I of France when confronted with two or more enemy armies was the use of the central position. This allowed Napoleon to drive a wedge to separate the enemy armies. He would then use part of his force to mask one army while the larger portion overwhelmed and defeated the second army quickly. He would then march on the second army leaving a portion to pursue the first army and repeat the operations. This was designed to achieve the highest concentration of men into the primary battle while limiting the enemy's ability to reinforce the critical battle. The central position had a weakness in that the full power of the pursuit of the enemy could not be achieved because the second army needed attention. So overall the preferred method of attack was the flank march to cross the enemies logistics. Napoleon used the central position strategy during the Battle of Waterloo Hundred Days. Napoleon masked Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington and massed against the Prussian army, and then after the Ligny battle was won, Napoleon attempted to do the same to the Allied/English army located just to the south of Waterloo. His subordinate was unable to mask the defeated Prussian army, who reinforced the Waterloo battle in time to defeat Napoleon and end his domination of Europe. It can be said that the Prussian Army under Gebhard Leberecht von Blücher used the "maneuver de derrière" against Napoleon who was suddenly placed in a position of reacting to a new enemy threat. For other uses, see Napoleon (disambiguation). ... Many things bear the name Waterloo. ... Look up Campaign in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with Wellington Region. ... A standard of the Prussian Army. ... The Blucher was an early railway locomotive built in 1814 by George Stephenson for the Killingworth Colliery. ...


Napoleon's practical strategic triumphs, repeatedly leading smaller forces to defeat larger ones, inspired a whole new field of study into military strategy. In particular, his opponents were keen to develop a body of knowledge in this area to allow them to counteract a masterful individual with a highly competent group of officers, a General Staff. The two most significant students of his work were Carl von Clausewitz, a Prussian with a background in philosophy, and Antoine-Henri Jomini, who had been one of Napoleon's staff officers. Clausewitz's On War has become the bible of strategy, dealing with political, as well as military, leadership. His most famous assertion being: Carl Philipp Gottfried von Clausewitz (IPA: ) (June 1, 1780[1] – November 16, 1831) was a Prussian soldier, military historian and influential military theorist. ... The philosopher Socrates about to take poison hemlock as ordered by the court. ... Jomini Antoine-Henri, baron Jomini (March 6, 1779–March 24, 1869), general in the French and afterwards in the Russian service, and one of the most celebrated writers on the art of war, was born at Payerne in the canton of Vaud, Switzerland, where his father was syndic. ... Neo Gomanism Manifesto Special - On War Vom Kriege (complete text available here) is a book on war and military strategy by Prussian general Carl von Clausewitz, written mostly after the Napoleonic wars, between 1816 and 1830, and published posthumously by his wife in 1832. ... This Gutenberg Bible is displayed by the United States Library. ...

"War is not merely a political act, but also a real political instrument, a continuation of policy carried out by other means."

Clausewitz dismissed "geometry" as an insignificant factor in strategy, believing instead in the Napoleonic concept of victory through battle and destruction of the opposing force, at any cost. However, he also recognized that limited warfare could influence policy by wearing down the opposition through a "strategy of attrition". A battle of attrition is a military engagement in which neither side has any tactical advantage, so that the only result of the fighting is the loss of men and material on both sides. ...


In contrast to Clausewitz, Antoine-Henri Jomini dealt mainly with operational strategy, planning & intelligence, the conduct of the campaign, and "generalship" rather than "statesmanship". He proposed that victory could be achieved by occupying the enemy's territory rather than destroying his army. As such, geometric considerations were prominent in his theory of strategy. Jomini's two basic principles of strategy were to concentrate against fractions of the enemy force at a time and to strike at the most decisive objective. Military intelligence (abbreviated MI, int. ...


One notable exception to Napoleon's strategy of annihilation and a precursor to trench warfare were the Lines of Torres Vedras during the Peninsular campaign. French Armies lived off the land and when they were confronted by a line of fortifications which they could not out flank, they were unable to continue the advance and were forced to retreat once they had consumed all the provisions of the region in front of the lines. Trench warfare is a form of war in which both opposing armies have static lines of defence. ... The Lines of Torres Vedras The Lines of Torres Vedras were a line of forts in Portugal built in secrecy between November 1809 and September 1810 during the Peninsular War. ... Combatants Kingdom of Spain, United Kingdom, Kingdom of Portugal French Empire The Peninsular War or Spanish War of Independence (Guerra de la Independencia Española) was a war in the Iberian Peninsula. ...


The Peninsular campaign was notable for the development of another method of warfare which went largely unnoticed at the time, but would become far more common in the 20th century. That was the aid and encouragement the British gave to the Spanish to harass the French behind their lines which led them to squander most of the assets of their Iberian army in protecting the army's line of communications. This was a very cost effective move for the British, because it cost far less to aid Spanish insurgents than it did to equip and pay regular British army units to engage the same number of French troops. As the British army could be correspondingly smaller it was able to supply its troops by sea and land without having to live off the land as was the norm at the time. Further, because they did not have to forage they did not antagonise the locals and so did not have to garrison their lines of communications to the same extent as the French did. So the strategy of aiding their Spanish civilian allies in their guerrilla or 'small war' benefited the British in many ways, not all of which were immediately obvious.


Strategy in the industrial age

The evolution of military strategy continued in the American Civil War (1861-65). The practice of strategy was advanced by generals such as Robert E. Lee, Ulysses S. Grant and William Tecumseh Sherman, all of whom had been influenced by the feats of Napoleon (Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson was said to have carried a book of Napoleon's maxims with him). However, the adherence to the Napoleonic principles in the face of technological advances such as the long-range infantry rifle generally led to disastrous consequences. The time and space in which war was waged changed as well. Railroads enabled swift movement of large forces but the manoeuvring was constrained to narrow, vulnerable corridors. Steam power and ironclads changed transport and combat at sea. Combatants United States of America (Union) Confederate States of America (Confederacy) Commanders Abraham Lincoln, Ulysses S. Grant Jefferson Davis, Robert E. Lee Strength 2,200,000 1,064,000 Casualties 110,000 killed in action, 360,000 total dead, 275,200 wounded 93,000 killed in action, 258,000 total... Year 1861 (MDCCCLXI) was a common year starting on Tuesday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Sunday of the 12-day slower Julian calendar). ... 1865 (MDCCCLXV) is a common year starting on Sunday. ... // This article is about the Confederate general. ... Ulysses S. Grant[2] (born Hiram Ulysses Grant, April 27, 1822 – July 23, 1885) was an American general and the eighteenth President of the United States (1869–1877). ... William Tecumseh Sherman (February 8, 1820 – February 14, 1891) was an American soldier, businessman, educator, and author. ... For the 1960s country music artist, see Stonewall Jackson (musician); for the submarine, see USS Stonewall Jackson (SSBN-634). ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... A steam engine is a heat engine that makes use of the potential energy that exists as pressure in steam, converting it to mechanical work. ... Ironclad warships, frequently shortened to just ironclads, were ships sheathed with thick iron plates for protection. ...


There was still room for triumphs of strategy of manoeuver such as Sherman's March to the Sea in 1864, but these depended upon an enemy's unwillingness to entrench. Towards the end of the war, especially in defense of static targets as in the battles of Cold Harbor and Vicksburg, trenches between both sides grew to a World War I scale. Many of the lessons of the American Civil War were forgotten when in wars like the Austro-Prussian War or the Franco-Prussian War maneuver won the day. Engraving by Alexander Hay Ritchie depicting Shermans March Shermans March to the Sea is the name commonly given to the Savannah Campaign, conducted in late 1864 by Major General William Tecumseh Sherman of the Union Army during the American Civil War. ... 1864 (MDCCCLXIV) was a leap year starting on Friday (see link for calendar) of the Gregorian calendar or a leap year starting on Sunday of the 12-day-slower Julian calendar. ... Combatants United States of America Confederate States of America Commanders Ulysses S. Grant George G. Meade Robert E. Lee Strength 108,000 62,000 Casualties 13,000 2,500 The Battle of Cold Harbor, the final battle of Union Lt. ... Combatants United States of America Confederate States of America Commanders Ulysses S. Grant John C. Pemberton Strength 77,000[1] ~30,000 Casualties 4,855[2] 32,697 (29,495 surrendered)[2] The Battle of Vicksburg, or Siege of Vicksburg, was the final significant battle in the Vicksburg Campaign of... “The Great War ” redirects here. ... Combatants Austria, Saxony, Bavaria, Baden, Württemberg, Hanover and some minor German States (formerly as the German Confederation) Prussia, Italy, and some minor German States Strength 600,000 Austrians and German allies 500,000 Prussians and German allies 300,000 Italians Casualties 20,000 dead or wounded 37,000 dead... Combatants Second French Empire North German Confederation allied with south German states (later German Empire) Commanders Napoleon III Otto Von Bismarck, Helmuth von Moltke the Elder Strength 400,000 at the beginning of the war 1,200,000 Casualties 150,000 dead or wounded 284,000 captured 350,000 civilian...


In the period preceding World War I, two of the most influential strategists were the Prussian generals, Helmuth von Moltke and Alfred von Schlieffen. Under Moltke the Prussian army achieved victory in the Austro-Prussian War (1866) and the Franco-Prussian War (1870-71), the latter campaign being widely regarded as a classic example of the conception and execution of military strategy. In addition to exploiting railroads and highways for manoeuvre, Moltke harnessed the telegraph for control of large armies. He recognised the increasing need to delegate control to subordinate commanders and to issue directives rather than specific orders. “The Great War ” redirects here. ... Graf Moltke Helmuth Karl Bernhard von Moltke (October 26, 1800 - April 24, 1891), who became Helmuth Graf von Moltke in 1870, was a famous Prussian general. ... Categories: Stub | 1833 births | 1913 deaths ... 1866 (MDCCCLXVI) is a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar or a common year starting on Wednesday of the 12-day-slower Julian calendar. ... 1870 (MDCCCLXX) was a common year starting on Saturday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Monday of the 12-day slower Julian calendar). ... 1871 (MDCCCLXXI) was a common year starting on Sunday (see link for calendar). ... Telegraph and Telegram redirect here. ...


Moltke is most remembered as a strategist for his belief in the need for flexibility and that no plan, however well prepared, can be guaranteed to survive beyond the first encounter with the enemy.


Field Marshal Schlieffen succeeded Moltke and directed German planning in the lead up to World War I. He advocated the "strategy of annihilation" but was faced by a war on two fronts against numerically superior opposition. The strategy he formulated was the Schlieffen Plan, defending in the east while concentrating for a decisive victory in the west, after which the Germans would go on to the offensive in the east. Influenced by Hannibal's success at the Battle of Cannae, Schlieffen planned for a single great battle of encirclement, thereby annihilating his enemy. “The Great War ” redirects here. ... Alfred Graf von Schlieffen For the French counter-plan, see Plan XVII The Schlieffen Plan was the German General Staffs overall strategic plan for victory on the Western Front against France, and was executed to near victory in the first month of World War I; however, a French counterattack... For the 11th-century battle in the Byzantine conquest of the Mezzogiorno, see Battle of Cannae (1018). ...


Another German strategist of the period was Hans Delbrück who expanded on Clausewitz's concept of "limited warfare" to produce a theory on the "strategy of exhaustion". His theory defied popular military thinking of the time, which was strongly in favour of victory in battle, yet World War I would soon demonstrate the flaws of a mindless "strategy of annihilation". Hans Delbrück, 1848-1929 Hans Delbrück (November 11, 1848 - July 14, 1929), German historian, was born at Bergen on the island of Rügen, and studied at the universities of Heidelberg and Bonn. ...


At a time when industrialisation was reaping major advances in naval technology, one American strategist, Alfred Thayer Mahan, almost single-handedly brought the field of naval strategy up to date. Influenced by Jomini's principles of strategy, he saw that in the coming wars, where economic strategy could be as important as military strategy, control of the sea granted the power to control the trade and resources needed to wage war. Mahan pushed the concept of the "big navy" and an expansionist view where defence was achieved by controlling the sea approaches rather than fortifying the coast. His theories contributed to the naval arms race between 1898 and 1914. Rear Admiral Alfred Thayer Mahan (September 27, 1840–December 1, 1914) was a United States Navy officer, geostrategist, and educator. ... Naval strategy is the planning and conduct of warfare at sea, the naval equivalent of military strategy on land. ... The term arms race in its original usage describes a competition between two or more parties for military supremacy. ... Year 1914 (MCMXIV) was a common year starting on Thursday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Wednesday of the 13-day-slower Julian calendar). ...


Strategy in World War I

At the start of World War I strategy was dominated by the offensive thinking that had been in vogue since 1870, despite the more recent experiences of the Second Boer War (1899-1902) and Russo-Japanese War (1904-05), where the machine gun demonstrated its defensive capabilities. By the end of 1914, the Western Front was a stalemate and all ability to manoeuver strategically was lost. The combatants resorted to a "strategy of attrition". The German battle at Verdun, the British on the Somme and at Passchendaele were among the first widescale battles intended to wear down the enemy. Attrition was time-consuming so the duration of World War I battles often stretched to weeks and months. The problem with attrition was that the use of fortified defenses in depth generally required a ratio of ten attackers to one defender, or a level of artillery support which was simply not feasible until late 1917, for any reasonable chance of victory. The ability of the defender to move troops using interior lines prevented the possibility of fully exploiting any breakthrough with the level of technology then attainable. “The Great War ” redirects here. ... Combatants British Empire Orange Free State South African Republic Commanders Sir Redvers Buller Lord Kitchener Lord Roberts Paul Kruger Louis Botha Koos de la Rey Martinus Steyn Christiaan de Wet Casualties 6,000 - 7,000 (A further ~14,000 from disease) 6,000 - 8,000 (Unknown number from disease) Civilians... Year 1899 (MDCCCXCIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Friday [1] of the 12-day-slower Julian calendar). ... 1902 (MCMII) was a common year starting on Wednesday (see link for calendar). ... Combatants Russian Empire Montenegro[1] Empire of Japan Commanders Emperor Nicholas II Aleksey Kuropatkin Stepan Makarov â€  Emperor Meiji Oyama Iwao Heihachiro Togo The Russo–Japanese War (Japanese: Nichi-Ro Sensō, Russian: , Chinese: , February 10, 1904 – September 5, 1905) was a conflict that grew out of the rival imperialist ambitions of... 1904 (MCMIV) was a leap year starting on a Friday (see link for calendar). ... 1905 (MCMV) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will display the full calendar). ... Year 1914 (MCMXIV) was a common year starting on Thursday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Wednesday of the 13-day-slower Julian calendar). ... Western Front was a term used during the First and Second World Wars to describe the contested armed frontier between lands controlled by Germany to the East and the Allies to the West. ... Stalemate is a situation in chess where the player whose turn it is to move has no legal moves but is not in check. ... A battle of attrition is a military engagement in which neither side has any tactical advantage, so that the only result of the fighting is the loss of men and material on both sides. ... Combatants  France  German Empire Commanders Philippe Pétain Robert Nivelle Erich von Falkenhayn Strength About 30,000 on 21 February 1916 About 150,000 on 21 February 1916 Casualties 378,000; of whom 120,000 died. ... Combatants British Empire Australia Canada New Zealand Newfoundland South Africa United Kingdom France German Empire Commanders Douglas Haig Joseph Joffre Max von Gallwitz Fritz von Below Strength 13 British & 11 French divisions (initial) 51 British and 48 French divisions (final) 10. ... Combatants British Empire Australia Canada New Zealand South Africa United Kingdom France German Empire Commanders Douglas Haig Hubert Gough Herbert Plumer Arthur Currie Max von Gallwitz Erich Ludendorff Strength Unknown Unknown Casualties 448,000 killed and wounded 260,000 killed and wounded Western Front Frontiers – Liège – Antwerp – Great Retreat... It has been suggested that Deep defence be merged into this article or section. ...


Perhaps the most controversial aspect of strategy in World War 1 was the difference among the British between the "Western" viewpoint (held by Field Marshal Haig) and the "Eastern"; the former being that all effort should be directed against the German Army, the latter that more useful work could be done by attacking Germany's allies. The term "Knocking away the props" was used, perhaps an unfortunate consequence of the fact that all of Germany's allies lay south of (i.e. 'beneath') her on the map. Apologists and defenders of the Western viewpoint make the valid point that Germany's allies were more than once rescued from disaster or rendered capable of holding their own or making substantial gains by the provision of German troops, arms or military advisers, whereas those allies did not at any time provide a similar function for Germany. That is, it was Germany which was the prop, and her allies (particularly Bulgaria and Austria-Hungary) did not suffer significant reverses until Germany's ability to come to their aid was grossly impaired.


On other fronts, there was still room for the use of strategy of manoeuver. The Germans executed a perfect battle of annihilation against the Russians at the Battle of Tannenberg (1914). In 1915 Britain and France launched the well-intentioned but poorly conceived and ultimately fruitless Dardanelles Campaign, combining naval power and an amphibious landing, in an effort to aid their Russian ally and knock the Ottoman Empire out of the war. The Palestine campaign was dominated by cavalry, which flourished in the local terrain, and the British achieved two breakthrough victories at Gaza (1917) and Megiddo (1918). Colonel T.E. Lawrence and other British officers led Arab irregulars on a guerrilla campaign against the Ottomans, using strategy and tactics developed during the Boer Wars. This article or section does not cite any references or sources. ... Battle of Gallipoli Conflict First World War Date 19 February 1915 - 9 January 1916 Place Gallipoli peninsula, Turkey Result Ottoman victory The Battle of Gallipoli took place on the Turkish peninsula of Gallipoli in 1915 during the First World War. ... It has been suggested that Landing operation be merged into this article or section. ... For other uses, see Ottoman (disambiguation). ... The Holy Land or Palestine Showing not only the Old Kingdoms of Judea and Israel but also the 12 Tribes Distinctly, and Confirming Even the Diversity of the Locations of their Ancient Positions and Doing So as the Holy Scriptures Indicate, a geographic map from the studio of Tobiae Conradi... Not to be confused with Golgotha, which was called Calvary. ... Third Battle of Gaza Conflict First World War Date 31 October–7 November 1917 Place Gaza, southern Palestine Result Allied victory The Third Battle of Gaza was fought in 1917 in southern Palestine during World War I. The British forces under the command of General Edmund Allenby successfully broke... 1917 (MCMXVII) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar (see link for calendar) or a common year starting on Tuesday of the 13-day slower Julian calendar (see: 1917 Julian calendar). ... Battle of Megiddo refers to one of three major battles fought near the ancient site of Megiddo in the Jezreel Valley of northern Israel. ... 1918 (MCMXVIII) was a common year starting on Tuesday of the Gregorian calendar (see link for calendar) or a common year starting on Wednesday of the Julian calendar. ... Thomas Edward Lawrence (August 16, 1888 – May 19, 1935), also known as Lawrence of Arabia, and (apparently, among his Arab allies) Aurens or El Aurens, became famous for his role as a British liaison officer during the Arab Revolt of 1916–1918. ... Languages Arabic and other minority languages Religions Sunni Islam, Shia Islam, Christianity, Druzism and Judaism An Arab (Arabic: ) is a member of a complexly defined ethnic group who identifies as such on the basis of one or more of either genealogical, political, or linguistic grounds. ... “Guerrilla” redirects here. ...


World War I saw armies on a scale never before experienced. The British, who had always relied on a strong navy and a small regular army, were forced to undertake a rapid expansion of the army. This outpaced the rate of training of generals and staff officers able to handle such a mammoth force, and overwhelmed the ability of British industry to equip it with the necessary weapons and adequate high-quality munitions until late in the war. Technological advances also had a huge influence on strategy: aerial reconnaissance, artillery techniques, poison gas, the automobile and tank (though the latter was, even at the end of the war, still in its infancy), telephone and radio telegraphy. The multinational Combined Task Force One Five Zero (CTF-150) The British Grand Fleet, the supreme naval force of World War I A rare occurrence of a 5-country multinational fleet, during Operation Enduring Freedom in the Oman Sea. ... Mixed reconnaissance patrol of the Polish Home Army and the Soviet Red Army during Operation Tempest, 1944 Reconnaissance is the military term for the active gathering of information about an enemy, or other conditions, by physical observation. ... Early detection of chemical agents Sociopolitical climate of chemical warfare While the study of chemicals and their military uses was widespread in China, the use of toxic materials has historically been viewed with mixed emotions and some disdain in the West (especially when the enemy were doing it). ... “Car” and “Cars” redirect here. ... For other uses, see Telephone (disambiguation). ... Wireless telegraphy is the practice of remote writing (see telegraphy) without the wires normally involved in an electrical telegraph. ...


More so than in previous wars, military strategy in World War I was directed by the grand strategy of a coalition of nations; the Entente on one side and the Central Powers on the other. Society and economy were mobilized for total war. Attacks on the enemy's economy included Britain's use of a naval blockade and Germany employing submarine warfare against merchant shipping. This article does not cite its references or sources. ... European military alliances in 1914. ... Total war is a military conflict in which nations mobilize all available resources in order to destroy another nations ability to engage in war. ... Naval warfare is divided into three operational areas: surface warfare, air warfare and submarine warfare. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with Merchant Marine. ...


Unity of command became a question when the various nation states began coordinating assaults and defenses. Under the pressure of horrendously destructive German attacks beginning on March 21, 1918, the Entente eventually settled under Field Marshal Foch. The Germans generally led the Central Powers, though German authority diminished and lines of command became confused at the end of the war. The March offensive, intended to drive a wedge between the French and British armies, turn on the latter and destroy it, lost direction and became driven by its territorial gains, its original purpose neglected. is the 80th day of the year (81st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... 1918 (MCMXVIII) was a common year starting on Tuesday of the Gregorian calendar (see link for calendar) or a common year starting on Wednesday of the Julian calendar. ... Ferdinand Foch (October 2, 1851 - March 20, 1929) was a French soldier. ...


World War I ended when the ability of the German army to fight became so diminished that Germany asked for peace conditions. The German military, exhausted by the efforts of the March offensives and dispirited by their failure, was first seriously defeated during the battle of Amiens (8-11 August 1918) and the German homefront entered general revolt over a lack of food and destruction of the economy. Victory for the Entente was almost assured by that point, and the fact of Germany's military impotence was driven home in the following hundred days. In this time, the Entente reversed the gains the Germans had made in the first part of the year, and the British Army (spearheaded by the Canadians and Australians) finally broke the Hindenburg defensive system. is the 223rd day of the year (224th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... 1918 (MCMXVIII) was a common year starting on Tuesday of the Gregorian calendar (see link for calendar) or a common year starting on Wednesday of the Julian calendar. ... Combatants United Kingdom, France, Australia, United States Germany Commanders Ferdinand Foch Georg von der Marwitz Strength 4 British armies 1 French army American Expeditionary Force Defensive forces and gun emplacements of the Hindenburg Line The Battle of the Hindenburg Line, which began September 18, 1918, was a key turning point...


Though his methods are questioned, Britain's Field Marshal Haig was ultimately proved correct in his grand strategic vision: "We cannot hope to win until we have defeated the German Army." By the end of the war, the best German troops were dead and the remainder were under continuous pressure on all parts of the Western Front, a consequence in part of an almost endless supply of fresh American reinforcements (which the Germans were unable to match) and in part of industry at last supplying the weakened Entente armies with the firepower to replace the men they lacked (whilst Germany wanted for all sorts of materials thanks to the naval blockade). Interior lines thus became meaningless as Germany had nothing more to offer its allies. The props eventually fell, but only because they were themselves no longer supported.


The role of the tank in World War One strategy is often poorly understood. Its supporters saw it as the weapon of victory, and many observers since have accused the high commands (especially the British) of shortsightedness in this matter, particularly in view of what tanks have achieved since. Nevertheless, the World War One tank's limitations, imposed by the limits of contemporary engineering technology, have to be borne in mind. They were slow (men could run, and frequently walk, faster); vulnerable (to artillery) due to their size, clumsiness and inability to carry armour against anything but rifle and machine gun ammunition; extremely uncomfortable (conditions inside them often incapacitating crews with engine fumes and heat, and driving some mad with noise); and often despicably unreliable (frequently failing to make it to their targets due to engine or track failures). This was the factor behind the seemingly mindless retention of large bodies of cavalry, which even in 1918, with armies incompletely mechanised, were still the only armed force capable of moving significantly faster than an infantryman on foot. It was not until the relevant technology (in engineering and communications) matured between the wars that the tank and the airplane could be forged into the co-ordinated force needed to truly restore manoeuvre to warfare.


Strategy Development Between World Wars

In the years following World War I, two of the technologies that had been introduced during that conflict, the aircraft and the tank, became the subject of strategic study. “Flying Machine” redirects here. ...


The leading theorist of air power was Italian general Giulio Douhet who believed that future wars would be won or lost in the air. The air force would carry the offensive and the role of the ground forces would be defensive only. Douhet's doctrine of strategic bombing meant striking at the enemy's heartland -- his cities, industry and communications. Air power would thereby reduce his willingness and capacity to fight. At this time the idea of the aircraft carrier and its capabilities also started to change thinking in those countries with large fleets, but no-where as much as in Japan. The UK and USA seem to have seen the carrier as a defensive weapon and their designs mirrored this, the Japanese Imperial navy seem to have developed a new offensive strategy based around the power projection these made possible. Aerial warfare is the use of aircraft and other flying machines for the purposes of warfare. ... General Giulio Douhet (30 May 1869 - 15 February 1930) was an Italian air power theorist. ... The city heart of Rotterdam after being terror bombed by Germany in 1940, the ruin of the (now restored) Laurens Kerk is the only building that reminds people of Rotterdams medieval architecture. ...


British general J. F. C. Fuller, architect of the first great tank battle at Cambrai, and his contemporary, B. H. Liddell Hart, were amongst the most prominent advocates of mechanization and motorization of the army in Britain. In Germany, study groups were set up by Von Seekt, commander of the Reichwehr Truppenamt, for 57 areas of strategy and tactics to learn from WW1 and to adapt strategy to avoid the stalemate and then defeat they had suffered. All seem to have seen the strategic shock value of mobility and the new possibilities made possible by motorised forces. Both saw that the armoured fighting vehicle demonstrated firepower, mobility and protection. The Germans seem to have seen more clearly the need to make all branches of the Army as mobile as possible to maximise the results of this strategy. It would negate the static defences of the trench and machine gun and restore the strategic principles of manoeuvre and offense. Nevertheless, it was the British Army which was the only [citation needed] one truly mechanised at the beginning of the Second World War, the Germans still relying on horse traction for a portion of their artillery. J.F.C. Fuller (September 1, 1878 – February 10, 1966), full name John Frederick Charles Fuller, was a British Major General, military historian and strategist, notable as an early theorist of modern armoured warfare, including categorising principles of warfare. ... Combatants United Kingdom Newfoundland German Empire Commanders Julian Byng Georg von der Marwitz Strength 2 Corps 1 Corps Casualties 44,207 Casualties 179 tanks out of action 45,000 Casualties (British estimates) The Battle of Cambrai (20 November - 3 December 1917) was a British campaign of World War I. Noted... Basil Henry Liddell Hart (October 31, 1895 _ January 29, 1970) was a military historian and is considered among the great military strategists of the 20th century. ... Hans von Seeckt Hans von Seeckt (22 April 1866 - 27 December 1936) was a German soldier. ... An armoured fighting vehicle (AFV) is a military vehicle, protected by armour and armed with weapons. ...


The innovative German Major (later General) Heinz Guderian developed the motorised part of this strategy as the head of one of the Truppenamt groups and may have incorporated Fuller's and Liddell Hart's ideas to amplify the groundbreaking Blitzkrieg effect that was seen used by Germany against Poland in 1939 and later against France in 1940. France, still committed to stationary World War I strategies, was completely surprised and summarily overwhelmed by Germany's mobile combined arms doctrine and Guderian's Panzer Corps. Heinz Wilhelm Guderian (17 June 1888 – 14 May 1954) was a military theorist and innovative General of the German Army during the Second World War. ... The Truppenamt or Troop Office was the cover organisation for the German General Staff from 1919 through until 1933 when the General Staff was re-created. ... The defining characteristic of what is commonly known as Blitzkrieg is that it is a highly mobile form of mechanized warfare. ... “The Great War ” redirects here. ... Panzer IV Ausf. ...


Technological change had an enormous effect on strategy, but little effect on leadership. The use of telegraph and later radio, along with improved transport, enabled the rapid movement of large numbers of men. One of Germany's key enablers in mobile warfare was the use of radios, where these were put into every tank. However, the number of men that one officer could effectively control had, if anything, declined. The increases in the size of the armies led to an increase in the number of officers. Although the officer ranks in the US Army did swell, in the German army the ratio of officers to total men remained steady. See Van Creveld's "Fighting Power" for more on this topic. The word leadership can refer to: the process of leading. ... Telegraph and Telegram redirect here. ...


Strategy in World War II

German WWII strategy


The German strategies of World War II were almost exclusively designed or condoned by Hitler himself. Though he was an amateur strategist at best, the initial successes of his unconventional and aggressive strategies, both military and political (e.g. Czechoslovakia, Poland, France), combined with the mythical attributes ascribed to him ("Führer Prinzip"), led to wide support for his leadership, both among the German population and the traditional military. Combatants Allied powers: China France Great Britain Soviet Union United States and others Axis powers: Germany Italy Japan and others Commanders Chiang Kai-shek Charles de Gaulle Winston Churchill Joseph Stalin Franklin Roosevelt Adolf Hitler Benito Mussolini Hideki Tōjō Casualties Military dead: 17,000,000 Civilian dead: 33,000... Adolf Hitler Adolf Hitler (April 20, 1889 – April 30, 1945, standard German pronunciation in the IPA) was the Führer (leader) of the National Socialist German Workers Party (Nazi Party) and of Nazi Germany from 1933 to 1945. ...


The main point of Hitler's strategy was the accumulation of "Lebensraum" ("Living space") for the German race. He felt that the German borders were too contained to secure their appropriate position in the geo-political world relations, and that he needed territories similar to the (British and French) colonies to secure enough economic resources to secure Germany's position as a major power. Furthermore, the current population of these territories needed to be enslaved, migrated, or exterminated, and re-populated by Germanic settlers. He felt that these areas could best be secured in the East (Poland, Ukraine, Russia) because he thought the races populating these territories were inferior. Lebensraum (German for habitat or living space) was one of the major political ideas of Adolf Hitler, and an important component of Nazi ideology. ... This article refers to a colony in politics and history. ... One of the hallmarks of contemporary great power status is permanent membership on the United Nations Security Council. ...


The intended strategy to achieve these goals was a series of relatively short wars, employing "blitzkrieg" tactics, to defeat one opponent at a time, and thus securing more land step by step. These wars were to be intertwined with periods of peace, or stalemate, when the German army could re-supply and accumulate force for the next war. The initial success of this strategy (the re-militarization of the Saarland, the Austrian Anschluss, and the occupation in two stages of Czechoslovakia) stifled critique and gave Hitler great prestige. Hitler didn't realize that the turning point had come with the invasion of Poland. Both France and Britain had frowned upon his expansion, and declared war on Germany on that occasion. Hitler believed that Britain could be appeased by the defeat of France, but he had underestimated the British determination. Even though Britain couldn't do much against Germany at first, a war of attrition had begun - something that the "blitzkrieg" concept was never designed for. The defining characteristic of what is commonly known as Blitzkrieg is that it is a highly mobile form of mechanized warfare. ... The Remilitarization of the Rhineland by the German Army took place on 7 March 1936 when German forces entered the Rhineland. ... German troops march into Austria on 12 March 1938. ... This article is about the military strategy. ... The defining characteristic of what is commonly known as Blitzkrieg is that it is a highly mobile form of mechanized warfare. ...


In the later years of the war, Hitler's strategy became more and more based on intuition, flawed logic, and unrealistic assumptions. However, the strength of his hold on domestic policy remained so strong, that his "brilliance" was not questioned, or was quickly suppressed. In the final stages of the war, his actions and orders had turned into the rambling of a madman rather than any attempt to conduct a coherent strategy.


Anglo-American WWII strategy


Confronted with the rise of Hitler's power on the continent, and realizing the brutality of his regime, the British gradually turned to a fierce opposition and finally a war declaration over the invasion of Poland. Britain wasn't prepared for war, especially on land, and the initial years were a series of defeats, as they got thrown off the European continent everywhere (France, Norway, Greece). However, the sea ensured their survival, since Germany had no navy to speak of compared to the British. After air superiority over the Channel was secured in the battle of Britain, and the anti-submarine weapons were perfected to win the battle of the Atlantic, Britain itself was not threatened anymore. Strategic plans could turn to the offensive, especially with the USA leaning more and more to a war with Germany. Combatants Poland Germany Soviet Union Slovakia Commanders Edward Rydz-Śmigły Fedor von Bock (Army Group North), Gerd von Rundstedt (Army Group South), Mikhail Kovalev (Belorussian Front), Semyon Timoshenko (Ukrainian Front), Ferdinand Čatloš (Field Army Bernolák) Strength 39 divisions, 16 brigades, 4,300 guns, 880 tanks, 400 aircraft Total... Combatants United Kingdom Including combatants from:[1] Poland New Zealand Canada Czechoslovakia Belgium Australia South Africa France Ireland United States Jamaica Palestine Rhodesia Germany Including combatants from Italy Commanders Hugh Dowding Hermann Göring Strength 754 single-seat fighters 149 two-seat fighters 560 bombers 500 coastal 1,963 total... Combatants Royal Navy Royal Canadian Navy United States Navy (1941–5) Kriegsmarine Regia Marina (1940–3) Commanders Sir Percy Noble Sir Max K. Horton Percy W. Nelles Leonard W. Murray Ernest J. King Erich Raeder Karl Dönitz Casualties 30,248 merchant sailors 3,500 merchant vessels 175 warships 28...


After the USA entered the war, Europe (as opposed to the Pacific) was chosen as the prime theater of operations by the formulation of the "Germany first" principle at the Arcadia Conference. However, their land armies wouldn't be capable of invading the mainland of Europe for years, even though Stalin begged for this to alleviate pressure on the Russian front. Instead, the Allies decided to take an indirect approach by invading Europe from the South. After cleansing North Africa of Axis forces (the invasion of French North-Africa and El Alamein), Sicily and southern Italy were invaded, effectively knocking Italy out of the war. Given that the terrain circumstances in this area were unviable to turn this route into the main thrust on Germany itself, the main purpose of these operations weren't mainly territorial, but focused on tying up as many German forces in southern Europe as possible, thereby alleviating pressure from the Soviets as well as thinning the garrison forces in France, where the main Allied force was still planned to invade. Europe first (sometimes known as Germany first) was the key element of the grand strategy employed by the United States and the United Kingdom during World War II. According to this policy, the United States and the United Kingdom would use the preponderance of their resources to subdue Germany in... The Arcadia Conference (ARCADIA was the code name used for the conference), held in Washington, D.C. was a World War II strategic meeting from December 22, 1941 to January 14, 1942 between the heads of government of the United Kingdom and the United States. ... Iosif (usually anglicized as Joseph) Vissarionovich Stalin (Russian: Иосиф Виссарионович Сталин), original name Ioseb Jughashvili (Georgian: იოსებ ჯუღაშვი&#4314... Combatants United States United Kingdom Free French Forces Vichy France Commanders Dwight Eisenhower Andrew Cunningham François Darlan Strength 73,500 60,000 Casualties 479+ dead 720 wounded 1,346+ dead 1,997 wounded Operation Torch (initially called Operation Gymnast) was the British-American invasion of French North Africa in... For the Battle of Alam Halfa, which is also often termed the Second Battle of El Alamein, see Battle of Alam Halfa Combatants British Eighth Army: United Kingdom Australia New Zealand South Africa India Panzer Army Africa: Nazi Germany Fascist Italy Commanders Bernard Montgomery Erwin Rommel Strength 220,000 men... Combatants  United States United Kingdom  Canada Free French Nazi Germany Italy Commanders Dwight D. Eisenhower Harold Alexander Bernard Montgomery George S. Patton, Jr. ... This article or section is in need of attention from an expert on the subject. ... For people named Garrison, see Garrison (disambiguation) Garrison House, built by William Damm in 1675 at Dover, New Hampshire Garrison (from the French garnison, itself from the verb garnir, to equip) is the collective term for the body of troops stationed in a particular location, originally to guard it, but...


In the air war, superiority was gained pretty early. After that, the Allies launched a strategic bombing campaign against Germany. After initial emphasis on economic targets (factories, infrastructure, etc), the Allies turned more and more towards terror bombing of German cities. The city heart of Rotterdam after being terror bombed by Germany in 1940, the ruin of the (now restored) Laurens Kerk is the only building that reminds people of Rotterdams medieval architecture. ... Terror bombing is a strategy of deliberately bombing civilian targets and strafing civilians in order to break the morale of the enemy and make its civilian population panic. ...


Soviet WWII strategy


Early Soviet strategy intended to avoid war for as long as possible. After the cleansing of the Red Army officer corps, the army was seen as unfit to conduct any kind of serious war, and this proved to be true by the Finnish winter war. With the signing of the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact, Stalin believed he had secured peace for as long as he needed to rebuild the Soviet military force. The Great Purge (Russian: , transliterated Bolshaya chistka) is the name given to campaigns of political repression and persecution in the Soviet Union orchestrated by Joseph Stalin during the late 1930s. ... Combatants Finland Soviet Union Commanders Carl Gustaf Emil Mannerheim Kliment Voroshilov, later Semyon Timoshenko Strength 250,000 men 30 tanks 130 aircraft[1][2] 1,000,000 men 3,000 tanks 3,800 aircraft[3][4] Casualties 26,662 dead 39,886 wounded 1,000 captured[5] 126,875 dead... Molotov signs the German-Soviet non-aggression pact. ... Iosif (usually anglicized as Joseph) Vissarionovich Stalin (Russian: Иосиф Виссарионович Сталин), original name Ioseb Jughashvili (Georgian: იოსებ ჯუღაშვი&#4314...


The Barbarossa campaign of 1941 came as a complete surprise to the Soviets. Nevertheless, they reacted swiftly, particularly in the civilian aspect. As the army was being defeated and gave ground at an amazing speed, a gigantic operation was staged to move the economic capacity from the Western areas that were about to be overrun, to Eastern regions that were out of reach for the Germans, like the Ural. Entire factories, including their labour force, were simply moved out of reach from the Germans, and what couldn't be taken was destroyed ("Scorched earth"). Thus, even though huge territories were captured by the Germans, the production potential was relatively unharmed, and the factories shifted to mass production of military equipment quickly, outproducing the German economy soon. Combatants Germany, Romania, Finland, Italy, Hungary, Slovakia  Soviet Union Commanders Adolf Hitler Wilhelm Ritter von Leeb Fedor von Bock Gerd von Rundstedt Heinz Guderian Günther von Kluge Franz Halder Maresal Ion Antonescu C.G.E. Mannerheim Giovanni Messe, CSIR Italo Gariboldi, ARMIR Joseph Stalin Kliment Voroshilov Semyon Timoshenko Fyodor... A scorched earth policy is a military tactic which involves destroying anything that might be useful to the enemy while advancing through or withdrawing from an area. ...


After achieving numerical superiority, the Soviets were still qualitatively inferior. To compensate this, they emphasized on gaining an even larger quantitative edge. The later offensive Soviet campaigns all saw a massive employment of manpower, often resulting in extremely bloody battles. It wasn't unusual that Soviet "victories" inflicted far larger casualties on themselves than on the Germans. However, the total national manpower pool was so much larger than the German one, that this still led to success.


Japanese WWII strategy.


Japanese WWII strategy was driven by two factors: the desire to expand their territories on the mainland of Asia (China and Manchuria), and the need to secure the supply of raw resources that they didn't have themselves, particularly oil. Since their quest after the former (conquest of Chinese provinces) endangered the latter (an oil boycott by the USA and its Allies), the Japanese government saw no other option then to conquer the oil sources in South-East Asia. Since these were controlled by American allies, war with the USA was also inevitable; and given that fact, they decided it would be best to deal a big blow to them first. This was executed in the Pearl Harbor strike, crippling the American battle fleet. Combatants China Japan Commanders Chiang Kai-shek, Chen Cheng, Yan Xishan, Feng Yuxiang, Li Zongren, Xue Yue, Bai Chongxi, Mao Zedong, Peng Dehuai Hirohito, Hideki Tojo, Kotohito Kanin, Matsui Iwane, Hajime Sugiyama, Shunroku Hata, Toshizo Nishio, Yasuji Okamura, Umezu Yoshijiro, Fumimaro Konoe Strength 58,600,000 4,100,000... For other uses, see Pacific War (disambiguation). ... This article is about the actual attack. ...


Japan hoped that it would take America so long to rebuild, that by the time they were back in force in the Pacific, they would consider the new balance of power a "fait accompli", and barter for peace. They had underestimated the psychological effect of the Pearl Harbor strike; the USA wouldn't negotiate with an enemy that had back stabbed them in this way. Even though South-East Asia was quickly conquered (Philippines, Indochina, Malacca peninsula, Dutch Indies), the early sea battles in the Pacific were tied. After the vital aircraft carrier force was destroyed in the Battle of Midway, the Japanese had to revert to a stiff defense that they kept up for three years after that. This article is about the actual attack. ... Combatants United States Empire of Japan Commanders Chester W. Nimitz Frank J. Fletcher Raymond A. Spruance Isoroku Yamamoto Chuichi Nagumo Tamon Yamaguchi â€  Strength 3 carriers, ~50 support ships, 233 carrier aircraft, 127 land-based aircraft 4 carriers, 7 battleships, ~150 support ships, 248 carrier aircraft, 16 floatplanes Casualties 1 carrier...


American WWII Pacific strategy


Since the American economic force was much larger than the Japanese, even considering their effort in the European theatre, the numerical inferior US forces remaining in the area after Pearl Harbor weren't afraid to battle the Japanese; they knew they could replace battle losses faster than the Japanese. In several aircraft carrier battles, the initiative was taken from the Japanese, and after the Battle of Midway, the Japanese navy was rendered helpless, effectively giving the Americans the possibility to sail wherever they wanted. Combatants United States Empire of Japan Commanders Chester W. Nimitz Frank J. Fletcher Raymond A. Spruance Isoroku Yamamoto Chuichi Nagumo Tamon Yamaguchi â€  Strength 3 carriers, ~50 support ships, 233 carrier aircraft, 127 land-based aircraft 4 carriers, 7 battleships, ~150 support ships, 248 carrier aircraft, 16 floatplanes Casualties 1 carrier...


As the Japanese offensive died down in the second half of 1942, the Americans saw themselves confronted with an endless amount of fortified garrisons on small islands in the ocean. They decided on a strategy of "leap-frogging", leaving the strongest garrisons alone, just cutting their supply, and securing bases of operation on the lightly defended isles instead. They kept up this strategy until they were in the Japanese waters themselves, allowing the aerial bombing of the Japanese mainland. Island hopping refers to crossing an ocean by a series of shorter journeys between islands, as opposed to a single journey directly across the ocean to the destination. ...


Australian strategy


Australia's historical ties with Britain meant that with the commencement of World War II her armies were sent overseas to contribute to battles in Europe. Fear from the north was so understated that at the outbreak of open warfare with Japan, Australia itself was extremely vulnerable to invasion (possible invasion plans were considered by the Japanese high command). Australia's policy became based entirely on domestic defense following the attacks on Pearl Habour and British assets in the South Pacific. Defying strong British opposition, Australian Prime Minister John Curtin recalled all troops from the European conflict for the defense of the nation. John Joseph Curtin (8 January 1885 – 5 July 1945), Australian politician and 14th Prime Minister of Australia, led Australia when the Australian mainland came under direct military threat during the Japanese advance in World War II. He is widely regarded as one of the countrys greatest Prime Ministers. ...


Australia's defensive doctrine saw a fierce campaign being fought along the Kokoda track in New Guinea. This policy sought to further stretch Japanese supply lines, preventing the invasion of the Australian mainland until the arrival of fresh American troops and the return of seasoned Australian soldiers from Europe. This can be seen as a variant of the war of attrition strategy, where the defender - out of necessity - had to hold the aggressor at a semi-static defensive line, rather than falling back in the face of superior numbers. This method is in stark contrast to the Russian scorched earth policy against Napoleon in 1812, where the defenders yielded home territory in favour of avoiding open battle. In both cases the lack of supplies was successful in blunting the assaults, following exhaustive defensive efforts. The monument at Owers Corner Location of the Kokoda Track within Papua New Guinea The Kokoda Track or Kokoda Trail is a single-file track which starts at Owers Corner 50 km east of Port Moresby in Papua New Guinea and runs 96 km overland (60 km as...


Cold War Strategy

The Cold War was the last time period dominated by the threat of total world annihilation through the use of nuclear weapons, a policy known as mutually assured destruction. As a consequence it was also a war in which attacks were not exchanged between the two main rivals, the United States and the Soviet Union. Instead, the war was fought through proxies. Instead of mainly being confined to Europe or the Pacific, the entire world was the battlefield, with countries rather than armies acting as main players. The only constant rule was that troops of the Soviet Union and the United States could not overtly fight with each other. For other uses, see Cold War (disambiguation). ... The mushroom cloud of the atomic bombing of Nagasaki, Japan, 1945, rose some 18 km (11 mi) above the epicenter. ... Mutually assured destruction (MAD) is the doctrine of military strategy in which a full scale use of nuclear weapons by one of two opposing sides would result in the destruction of both the attacker and the defender. ... A proxy war is a war where two powers use third parties as a supplement or a substitute for fighting each other directly. ...


The difference between tactics, strategy and grand strategy began to melt during the Cold War as command and communication technologies improved to a greater extent, in first world armed forces. The third world armed forces controlled by the two superpowers found that grand strategy, strategy and tactics, if anything, moved further apart as the command of the armies fell under the control of super power leaders. For the Jamaican reggae band, see Third World (band). ... For other uses, see Superpower (disambiguation). ...


American cold warriors like Dean Acheson and George C. Marshall quickly recognized that the key to victory was the economic defeat of the Soviet Union. The Soviet Union had adopted an aggressive posture of Communist expansionism following the end of World War II, with the United States and its strong navy quickly finding that it had to aggressively defend much of the world from the Soviet Union and the spread of Communism. Cold warrior is a phrase used to describe the men and women involved in the shaping and executing of American and Soviet policy during the Cold War. ... Dean Acheson Dean Gooderham Acheson (April 11, 1893 – October 12, 1971) was an American statesman and lawyer; as United States Secretary of State in the late 1940s he played the central role in defining American foreign policy for the Cold War. ... For other persons named George Marshall, see George Marshall (disambiguation). ... Communism is an ideology that seeks to establish a classless, stateless social organization based on common ownership of the means of production. ...


Strategies during the Cold War also dealt with nuclear attack and retaliation. The United States maintained a policy of limited first strike throughout the Cold War. In the event of a Soviet attack on the Western Front, resulting in a breakthrough, the United States would use tactical nuclear weapons to stop the attack. The Soviet Union responded by adopting a policy of no first use, involving massive retaliation resulting in mutual assured destruction. So, if the Warsaw Pact attacked using conventional weapons, NATO would use tactical nukes. The Soviet Union would respond with an all out nuclear attack, resulting in a similar attack from the United States, with all the consequences the exchange would entail. This did not happen. The United States continues to maintain a policy of limited first strike to the present (October 2006). Nuclear strategy involves the development of doctrines and strategies for the production and use of nuclear weapons. ... The limited first strike policy is a military doctrine referring to the use of nuclear weapons in modern military strategy. ... Western Front was a term used during the First and Second World Wars to describe the contested armed frontier between lands controlled by Germany to the East and the Allies to the West. ... Breakthrough is the name of an abstract strategy board game. ... American scientists examine a mockup of a W48 155-millimeter nuclear shell, a very small tactical nuclear weapon. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... Massive Retaliation is a military doctrine in which an entity commits itself to retaliate in much greater force in the event of an attack. ... Mutual assured destruction (MAD) is a doctrine of military strategy in which a full-scale use of nuclear weapons by one of two opposing sides would effectively result in the destruction of both the attacker and the defender. ... Not to be confused with the Warsaw Convention, which is an agreement about airlines financial liability and the Treaty of Warsaw (1970) between West Germany and the Peoples Republic of Poland. ... NATO 2002 Summit in Prague. ... Consequence can be: Consequences is a game. ... October 2006 is the tenth month of that year and has yet to occur. ...


Post Cold War Strategy

See also: Asymmetric warfare

Strategy in the post Cold War has come to be defined by the hyperpower status of the United States. Asymmetric wsexfare originally referred to war between two or more actors, or groups of actors, whose relative power differed by a significant amount. ... A hyperpower is a state that is militarily, economically, and technologically dominant on the world stage. ...


It is increasingly relying on advanced technology to minimize casualties and improve efficiency. The technological quantum leaps brought by the Digital Revolution are essential for this strategy. See: Network-centric warfare. This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... Network-centric warfare (NCW), now commonly called Network-centric operations (NCO), is a new military doctrine or theory of war pioneered by the United States Department of Defense. ...


The gap in strategy today (from a western viewpoint) is in what the Americans call "asymmetric warfare": the battle against guerrilla forces by conventional national armed forces. The classical strategic triumvirate of politics/military/populace is very weak against protracted warfare of paramilitary forces such as the IRA, Hezbollah, ETA, and Al-Qaeda. The ability of conventional forces to deliver utility (effect) from their hugely powerful forces is largely nullified by the difficulties of distinguishing and separating combatants from the civilian populace in whose company they hide. This has led to large amounts of damage to non-targeted people and assets which undermines the attackers and is often used to bolster political support for the guerrillas and destabilize the politics of the attacker. The use of the military by the politicians to police areas seen as bases for these guerrillas leads to them becoming targets themselves which eventually undermines the support of the populace from whom they come and whose values they represent. Asymmetric wsexfare originally referred to war between two or more actors, or groups of actors, whose relative power differed by a significant amount. ... The Provisional Irish Republican Army (Irish: Óglaigh na hÉireann) (IRA; also referred to as the PIRA, the Provos, or by some of its supporters as the Army or the RA.[2]) is an Irish Republican, left wing[3] paramilitary organisation that, until the Belfast Agreement, sought to end Northern... For other uses, see Hezbollah (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see ETA (disambiguation). ... Al-Qaeda (Arabic: القاعدة, the foundation or the base) is the name given to a worldwide network of militant Islamist organizations under the leadership of Osama bin Laden. ...


The militaries of today are largely set up to fight the 'last war' and hence have huge armoured and conventionally configured infantry formations backed up by air-forces and navies designed to support or prepare for these forces.[1] Many are today deployed against guerrilla-style opponents where their strengths cannot be utilised to effect. The mass formations of Industrial War are often seen as much less effective than the unconventional forces that these organisations also possess. The new opponents operate at a local level whereas Industrial armed forces work at a much higher 'theatre' level. The nervous system of these new opponents is largely political rather than military hierarchical and adapted to the local supporting populace who hide them. The centre provides the political idea and driving logic perhaps with overall direction and some funding. Local groups decide their own plans, raise much of their own funds and may be more or less aligned to the centre's aims. Defeat of forces when revealed does not disable this type of organisation, many modern attack strategies will tend to increase the power of the group they are intended to weaken. A new more political strategy is perhaps more appropriate here with military backing. Such a strategy has been illustrated in the war between the IRA an adoption and codification is unclear.


Principles of military strategy

  • The principle of mass - given all things being equal, sending a single tactical allied unit to combat a single tactical enemy unit will result in 50% chance of defeat, resulting in a 1 to 1 loss ratio at the strategic level. However, sending two or more units to combat a single enemy unit will result in a loss ratio of less than 1 to 1.
  • Selecting decisive objectives.
  • Taking the initiative away from your foe.
  • Concentrating your resources at the decisive point.
  • Economizing your resources by reducing waste.
  • Coordinating the movement of your resources to meet your objective.
  • Maintaining unity of command.
  • Coordinating your tasks to achieve maximum effectiveness.
  • Maintaining secrecy until it is too late for your opponent to react.
  • Employing unexpected elements such as deception, speed, creativity, and audacity.
  • Keep your plans as simple as is needed to accomplish the task.
  • Choose a flexible strategy so you can adapt to changing conditions.
  • Organize for maximum efficiency.
  • Maintain a positive morale even in the face of set-backs.
  • Maintain momentum until success is accomplished.

Military tactics (Greek: Taktikē, the art of organizing an army) are the collective name for methods for engaging and defeating an enemy in battle. ... A military unit is an organisation within an armed force. ... “Fights” redirects here. ... A ratio is a quantity that denotes the proportional amount or magnitude of one quantity relative to another. ... Secrecy is the practice of sharing information among a group of people, which can be as small as one person, while hiding it from others. ... This article or section does not cite any references or sources. ... In classical mechanics, momentum (pl. ...

References

  1. ^ The Utility of Force, General Sir Rupert Smith, Allen Lane, London, 2005, ISBN 0-713-99836-9

Military Strategy Research Centers

  • The US Army War College Strategic Studies Institute publishes several dozen papers and books yearly focusing on current and future military strategy and policy, national security, and global and regional strategic issues. Most publications are relevant to the International strategic community, both academic and military. All are freely available to the public in PDF format. The organization was founded by General Dwight Eisenhower after WWII.

Dwight David Ike Eisenhower (October 14, 1890–March 28, 1969), American soldier and politician, was the 34th President of the United States (1953–1961) and supreme commander of the Allied forces in Europe during World War II, with the rank of General of the Army. ...

Further reading

  • G.C. D'Aguilar, Napoleon's Military Maxims, free ebook, Napoleon's Military Maxims
  • Thaddeus Holt, The Deceivers: Allied Military Deception in the Second World War, Simon and Schuster, June, 2004, hardcover, 1184 pages, ISBN 0-7432-5042-7

Military strategists

This is a list of military writers, alphabetical by last name. ...

See also

Some military strategies: Military tactics (Greek: Taktikē, the art of organizing an army) are the collective name for methods for engaging and defeating an enemy in battle. ... Military doctrine is a level of military planning between national strategy and unit-level tactics, techniques, and procedures. ... Introduction Strategies are the key to winning wars, and as all great strategists know,you cant win a war with one strategy. ... This page contains a list of military tactics: // Identification of objectives Concentration of effort Exploiting prevailing weather Exploiting night Maintenance of reserve forces Economy of force Force protection Force dispersal Military Camouflage Deception Perfidy False flag Electronic countermeasures Electronic counter-counter-measures Radio silence Fortification Fieldworks (entrenchments) Over Head Protection... This is a list of military writers, alphabetical by last name. ...

Other concepts related to military strategy: Alfred Graf von Schlieffen For the French counter-plan, see Plan XVII The Schlieffen Plan was the German General Staffs overall strategic plan for victory on the Western Front against France, and was executed to near victory in the first month of World War I; however, a French counterattack... Mutual assured destruction (MAD) is a doctrine of military strategy in which a full-scale use of nuclear weapons by one of two opposing sides would effectively result in the destruction of both the attacker and the defender. ... The defining characteristic of what is commonly known as Blitzkrieg is that it is a highly mobile form of mechanized warfare. ... Shock and awe, technically known as rapid dominance, is a military doctrine based on the use of overwhelming decisive force, dominant battlefield awareness, dominant maneuvers, and spectacular displays of power to paralyze an adversarys perception of the battlefield and destroy its will to fight. ... The Fabian strategy is a military strategy where pitched battles are avoided in favor of wearing down an opponent through a war of attrition. ...


  Results from FactBites:
 
Military strategy - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (4059 words)
Military strategy deals with the planning and conduct of campaigns, the movement and disposition of forces, and the deception of the enemy.
In the environment of the grand strategy, the military component is largely reduced to operational strategy -- the planning and control of large military units such as corps and divisions.
The strategy he formulated was the Schlieffen Plan, defending in the east while concentrating for a decisive victory in the west, after which the Germans would go on to the offensive in the east.
Military Strategy and Tactics (2023 words)
Military strategy and tactics are essential to the conduct of warfare.
Strategy, for example, literally means "the art of the general" (from the Greek strategos) and originally signified the purely military planning of a campaign.
In the 19th and 20th centuries, however, with the rise of mass ideologies, vast conscript armies, global alliances, and rapid technological change, military strategy became difficult to distinguish from national policy or "grand strategy," that is, the proper planning and utilization of the entire resources of a society--military, technological, economic, and political.
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