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Principles of Strategy and Tactics

Discussion in 'Strategy & Tactics' started by Darth Ice, Feb 22, 2011.

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  1. Darth Ice

    Darth Ice New Member

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    First off, I just love coming up with new strategies and tacticies. So my question is, are there any principles that apply when developing one's strategy and/or tactic?

    Perhaps something that could be applied in more than just one area. Like for activities ranging from Paintball to real combat, from fighting on the ground to fighting in the air.


    I guess puting it simply: I am involded in all kinds of activities that require the use of strategy and tactics so I am just looking for a set of guidelines to follow when developing one.

    Sorry if this does not make much sence but it is 3:00 am where I am at and my brain is doing this :sleepy3. (I am working on homework and doing this will waiting for it to load.)

    Again sorry I will be more that happy to answer any quesitons.
     
  2. Feros Ferio

    Feros Ferio New Member

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    Hey Darth Ice,

    While I'm sure this thread will touch of a firestorm of advice, I'd like to put forth a few gems to start it off, by one of my favorite thinkers in the realm of strategy, Basil Liddell Hart.

    1) Direct attacks against an enemy firmly in position almost never work and should never be attempted.

    This is not to say that they never work, but even if they do, such direct assaults often result in such a high causalty rate, so that the battle isn't worth winning, as your further plans are stalled, or worse, must be abandoned. This is due to the fact that this is your opponent's chosen ground, which he decided that under the circumstances, was the best possible place for him to face you, due to the advantages it will give him in the confrontation. Get the idea?

    2) To defeat the enemy one must first upset his equilibrium, which is not accomplished by the main attack, but must be done before the main attack can succeed.

    This maxim is directly related to the first maxim. Attempt to throw your opponent off balance by doing a variety of things. First of all, try to choose the least expected line of attack. Or if you must attack where he is prepared for it, make him believe you will attack elsewhere to draw off some of his strength.


    I could offer you many more, but I'm at work and just wanted to kick it off with these two. Hope they prove helpful to you. They certainly have to me.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 22, 2013
  3. Kilo 2-3

    Kilo 2-3 New Member

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    How you fight is going to be dictated by several things:

    1. Who you're fighting.
    2. What you're fighting with.
    3. Where you're fighting.
    4. What you're trying to accomplish (mission/goal).
    5. Other concerns (foreign policy, etc.)

    Once you know these, build the tactic/strategy which fits it best, making compromises and value judgments where you need to. You can do this preemptively (most modern militaries all have well-forged, up-to-date doctrine) or reactively in response to an enemy's tactical and strategic moves.

    What kind of things are you involved in that require this sort of decisionmaking?

    Just my two cents.
     
  4. Feros Ferio

    Feros Ferio New Member

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    Yeah Darth, what are you doing? Advice may vary depending on what you're involved in. Are you more involved with tactical type scenarios (aka paintball, etc...)? Or something which necessitates a higher strategy such as a whole campaign type scenario?:confused:
     
  5. Darth Ice

    Darth Ice New Member

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    Sorry for not repling sooner but my teachers had me loaded down with homework.

    Right now the activity I will be involved in are paintball; however, in about four years I will be joining the army as a secound lieutenant (through West Point or ROTC program).

    I am a senior in high school and will be joining after college. After college then the army. Since I will be an officer I want to learn as much as I can about developing and deploying tactics/strategies.
     
  6. Feros Ferio

    Feros Ferio New Member

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    If you're going to be an officer in the Army, and want to begin to develop your knowledge of strategy and tactics, I would recommend reading Basil Liddell-Hart 's book "Strategy". This book will give you some excellent strategic analysis of various major campaigns throughout history, with the focus towards the end shifting to WW1 and 2. One of the major benefits of this book, in my opinion, is that through this study, he distills some simple and helpful strategic maxims which have shown themselves to be relevant throughout history.

    For someone at your stage of the game, I think this would be a great place to start.
     
  7. Kilo 2-3

    Kilo 2-3 New Member

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    If you're a senior now, the deadline for applying for USMA and ROTC scholarships will probably have passed. If the colleges you're looking at attending next year have ROTC programs, give the AROTC battalion on campus a call and ask if you can participate in the program. If you show interest and motivation, they will almost certainly give you a go-ahead. When class registration time rolls around in the Fall, sign up for the Leadership Lab and PT.

    Also, check in with one of the recruiting officers to see if you can get a scholarship for the remaining three years of your time in college.

    As an LT, you'll be called upon to be a combat leader, and a large part of that involves being creative, improvising with what you have to get the mission done.

    But at the same time, you'll also have to follow SOP and play by the rules. For example, as a soldier, you'll learn how to do things like call in a nine-line medevac. There's a set way of doing it, screw around with that set way and people get killed. You have to balance being imaginative and doing things by the book.

    Focus on being physically fit, mentally sharp, and keep you communication and leadership skills honed.
     
  8. Darth Ice

    Darth Ice New Member

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    I turn in my application for USMA. However, there are about 45,000 applicants (I heard) so I am looking for other colleges to attent in case I don't get accepted. I was not sure how to get into the ROTC programs but I do now thanks.
     
  9. Kilo 2-3

    Kilo 2-3 New Member

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    Where else have you applied? Deadlines have probably passed for most of the four-years. I don't know what AROTC's policy on transfers from community colleges is, so going to a CC this Fall might be an option.

    Look into OCS and direct commissioning as well.
     
  10. Darth Ice

    Darth Ice New Member

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    So far chipola (A two year with some four year digrees and I don't it has ROTC) and UWF a four year with ROTC.
     
  11. DaffydLandegge

    DaffydLandegge New Member

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    Strategy Principles and Concepts:

    Principle #1: Attack and defend using Deception.
    Principle #2: Defend against Deception by being Non-Trusting.
    Principle #3: React with an appropriate Response.

    Law #1: Attack the Moral Law of man: use Propoganda.
    Law #2: Attack using the power of the Heavens: time of day and weather can be an ally.
    Law #3: Attack with the knowledge of Earth: know the ground and how to negotiate it.
    Law #4: Attack with the mind of a Commander: always fight with the mind first and foremost.
    Law #5: Attack using Method & Discipline: focus and stick to your goal in a Tactical manner.

    This is a simplified version of my book based on warfare strategy.
     
  12. gf0012-aust

    gf0012-aust Grumpy Old Man Staff Member Verified Defense Pro

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    Quoting "Fallen Earth" gaming strategy might not be the best start....
     
  13. Ghost Prime

    Ghost Prime New Member

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    It seems that there are mountains of books written about strategy and tactics. I am no scholar by any means though I have read some common ones like Art of War, Go Rin No Sho (Musashi), Roots of Strategy, and others. My question is how are the concepts put into practice in a real life struggle?

    It can hardly be a good time to "practice" if one is put into a position where the knowledge held in the books can be the difference between life and death. I guess what I am asking is this; what is the process whereby battlefield tactics are learned in advance of the actual battle so they can be employed effectively? I am speaking here of strictly foot soldier against foot soldier, without armor, artillery, or air support.
    I look forward to hearing the comments from any member who wishes to weigh in. Thanks.
     
  14. bdique

    bdique Member

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    That's the purposes of field exercises. There's a saying that drills are a bloodless war, and wars are a bloody drill. The Tactical Engagement System is essentially LaserQuest on mega steroids, and can be adapted to simulate 40mm M203 rounds and another weapons etc. The versatility of the system allows for troops to encounter a large range of potential weapon systems and react accordingly.
     
  15. ngatimozart

    ngatimozart Super Moderator Staff Member Verified Defense Pro

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  16. Ghost Prime

    Ghost Prime New Member

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    ngatimozart

    I don't intend to be presumptuous so I will reply by saying thanks, I will do the reading. In the end, I am looking for more hands on approaches, keeping in mind I am a civvy with no military experience.
     
  17. ngatimozart

    ngatimozart Super Moderator Staff Member Verified Defense Pro

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    No probs mate. I did 12 years in two different services and what I knew about strategy was learned from what we Kiwis called training manuals - war comics :) I was never a SNCO or an officer. What little I know I have learned since, hence my having those links I put up. I'm slowly working my way through the list when I can get hold of the books. If you go to http://www.clausewitz.com/, Army Electronic Publications & Forms - Department of the Army and JEL - Joint Electronic Library you'll find some good resources there.
     
  18. bdique

    bdique Member

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    I'm not going to be outdone here haha :p

    I think every nation's military would have an online, open database that looks at strategy, tactics, leadership or management in the military context in some form or another. The Singaore Armed Forces Pointer is one such resource POINTER - Home) and it gives a balanced look at Singaporean and International examples. I may not have 12 years of experience but I find what I read here truly enlightening.
     
  19. Gremlin29

    Gremlin29 Super Moderator Staff Member Verified Defense Pro

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    To be fair and in simplest of terms, from a military standpoint you should consider that strategy and tactics are two different things. Strategy drives tactics, tactics do not drive strategy. Typically strategy and tactics meet at the theater command level, whereas strategy occurs at a higher level. Tactics are driven and constrained by the strategic objective. Rules of engagement are easy enough to see how strategy, will affect the tactical situation by removing (from the field commanders) certain tactical options. An example would be ROE that require positive id of military aged males with weapons prior to engagement. One obvious tactic removed from the field commanders tool box is recon by fire.

    You can choose to study either end of the spectrum, I recommend you consider looking into the Military Decision Making Process or MDMP as a primer on how complicated deliberate operations can be. Besides, if you end up commissioning in the military you will be at the lowest level of action officer and will be learning about the MDMP fairly early in your career. ;)
     
  20. willenbrock

    willenbrock New Member

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    The principles of tactical actions (METT-TC) Western area:

    1. The mission, that is - the purpose of the fight.
    2. Enemy.
    3. Territory and weather.
    4. Support existing troops.
    5. Available time.
    6. Civil considerations, that is, combatants do not fight against non-combatants.

    "Тhe principles of the Eastern countries tactics":
    Or to be more precise, I quote:

    The use of motorized infantry and tank units based on the general principles of tactics organized and carried out in the hostilities, which include:
    1. Maintaining their high combat and mobilization readiness;
    2. Activity and decisive action;
    3. consistent application of all divisions, combat capabilities, involved in combined arms combat, maintaining continuous interaction between them;
    4. Line combat missions combat capabilities of their units;
    5. Secrecy and suddenness of action, the use of stratagem;
    6. Brave maneuver units, forces , capabilities and fire;
    7. Early establishment of reserves, their skillful use and timely recovery;
    8. Consolidation of success;
    9. Comprehensive support of combat (the task);
    10. Maintenance and timely restoration of combat capability;
    11. A permanent record, the skillful use of the moral and psychological factors;
    12. Solid, stable and continuous control units, power and resources.

    If the translation from the Russian language would be more correct, it is still here it would be hard to understand something.
    And why?
    Because all of these 12 steps to the tactics are irrelevant.