“The heart of the matter is to relate the man to his fellow soldier as he will find him on the field of battle, to condition him to human nature as he will learn to depend on it when the ground offers him no comfort and weapons fail. Only when the human, rather than the… Read More
“When you are commanding, leading men under conditions where physical exhaustion and privations must be ignored, where the lives of men may be sacrificed, then, the efficiency of your leadership will depend only to a minor degree on your tactical ability.” General George C. Marshall, speaking to the first graduating class of the Officer Candidate… Read More
“Though the old military maxim that ‘the weakest point always follows success’ applies with especial emphasis to the operations of minor tactical forces, it might more sensibly be rewritten that the weakest point is when the leaders relaxes. This being the natural reaction of troops, there is no safeguard against it other than double vigilance… Read More
“The intelligent leadership of troops, and the ability to appreciate and predict the way operations develop call for firm and precise direction of forces. Any suggestion of the exercise of independent command by junior commanders is unacceptable. Not knowing the general situation, junior commanders are likely to take decisions incompatible with it; and this may… Read More
“[Major‐General Sir Harry] Smith attacked with infantry and drove [the Sikhs] out of All despite stubborn counterattacks. With strong cavalry and artillery support, the British rolled up the Sikh line and Smith, leading the last charge in person, drove them headlong over the difficult ford of the broad Sutlej. The Duke of Wellington told the… Read More
“Let your plans be as dark and impenetrable as night, and when you move, fall like a thunderbolt.” Sun Tzu (400 BCE to 301 BCE) Sunzi, Wade-Giles romanisation Sun-tzu, also spelled Sun Tzu, personal name Sun Wu, (flourished 5th century BC), reputed author of the Chinese classic Bingfa (The Art of War), the earliest known… Read More
“Any military commander who is honest will admit that he makes mistakes in the application of military power.” Robert McNamara (1916 to 2009) Robert Strange McNamara was the US Secretary of Defence from 1961 to 1968 who revamped Pentagon operations and who played a major role in the nation’s military involvement in the Vietnam War.