Thoughts on the military and military activities of a diverse nature. Free-ranging and eclectic.

Monday, January 26, 2004

This is coolbert: The military historian Trevor De Puy lists in his book "Understanding War", the thirteen timeless verities of combat. De Puy graduated from West Point prior to WW2, commanded a British artillery brigade in Burma, and was a staff officer at the Pentagon during his career. Had a long second career as a military historian. The thirteen timeless verities listed by De Puy are:

1. Offensive action is essential for positive combat results.

2. Defensive strength is greater than offensive strength.

3. Defensive posture is necessary when successful offense is impossible.

4. Flank or rear attack is more likely to succeed than frontal attack.

5. Initiative permits application of preponderant combat power.

6. Defenders chances of success are directly proportional to fortification strength.

7. An attacker willing to pay the price can always penetrate the strongest defenses.

8. Successful defense requires depth and reserves.

9. Superior combat power always wins.

10. Surprise substantially enhances combat power.

11. Firepower kills, disrupts, suppresses, and causes dispersion.

12. Combat activities are always less slower, less productive, and less efficient than anticipated.

13. Combat is too complex to be described in a single, simple aphorism [a simple true statement of fact].

These verities will be the subject of later posts.



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