Download The Practice of Strategy: From Alexander the Great to the by John Andreas Olsen, Colin S. Gray PDF

By John Andreas Olsen, Colin S. Gray

The perform of Strategy makes a speciality of grand approach and army procedure as practiced over a longer time period and lower than very various conditions, from the campaigns of Alexander the nice to insurgencies and counter-insurgencies in present-day Afghanistan and Iraq. It offers method because it pertained not just to wars, campaigns, and battles, but additionally to occasions of peace that have been over-shadowed by means of the specter of battle. The ebook is meant to deepen knowing of the phenomena and common sense of process by means of reconstructing the concerns and components that formed imperial and geographical region policies.

Through historic case reports, the booklet sheds gentle on a basic query: is there a cohesion to all strategic event? Adopting the operating definition of process as 'the paintings of profitable through purposely matching ends, methods and means,' those chapters take care of the intrinsic nature of struggle and approach and the features of a specific method in a given clash. They convey particular convergence of political targets, operational schemes of manoeuvre, tactical strikes and countermoves, technological ideas and barriers, geographic settings, temporary feelings and extra made each one clash studied particular. but, regardless of the intense number of the folk, situations, and explanations mentioned during this e-book, there's a robust case for continuity within the software of method from the olden days to the current.

Together, those chapters show that grand approach and armed forces process have parts of continuity and alter, artwork and technological know-how. They extra recommend that the component of continuity lies within the crucial nature of procedure and conflict, whereas the part of switch lies within the personality of person options and wars.

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10 With today's wider interpretation of the term strategy, there is a greater case for continuity in what is essentially an exercise in statesmanship in times of peace and war, than with its nineteenth‐century usage. In this vital sense, at least, our contemporary understanding of strategy probably is closer to Sun Tzu on the art of war than it is to Clausewitz. Brief Summary Adopting the working definition of strategy as ‘the art of winning by purposely matching ends, ways, and means’, this book explores how strategy has been applied throughout history.

He shows that for Britain, control of the seas lay at the heart of both the conduct and strategy of the Napoleonic Wars. Control of the seas enabled Britain to sustain the war, in the sense that maritime commerce provided her with the resources of money and raw materials needed to continue the fight. At the same time, it rendered her invulnerable to direct attack, while also strengthening her against assaults of a more insidious nature. Sea power ensured that Britain would not be starved into submission and provided a source of social stability in a time of crisis.

In Chapter 4, Anne Curry argues that the war must be seen in terms of phases. In some, English strategy consisted largely of raids through enemy territory, while in others it consisted of deliberate conquest and occupation. The author explains why certain strategies were chosen at particular points, noting that strategic decisions in medieval warfare often appear to be the result of personal choices by kings and princes at particular moments in time, with little attention to theory or to ‘lessons of history’.

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