Monday, August 25, 2014

The Undissected War

I just finished another draft of a chapter for my second book. (By the way, my first book is now available in paperback as well.)  The new chapter is based on the abstract linked to below, though I've made significant modifications that I think enhanced the chapter.  I found this as I was researching which went very well with the ideas that inspired my chapter. In fact, it is rather nice to know that I noticed the same principles described by one of the best modern strategists.  (The author's book on Roman strategy  still dominates the field.) It tends to give me even more confidence that my second book will be even better than the first.

Here is from page twenty of Edward Luttwack's Strategy:

...critical faculties are certainly more likely to be sharpened by failure; and if remedies are offered to improve performance, they are less likely to be resisted by inert conservatism because the hierarchical defenders of the status quo, will have been undermined by defeat...With victory, all of the army’s habits, procedures, structural arrangements, tactics, and methods, will indiscriminately be confirmed as valid or even brilliant-including those that were positively harmful, but with all of their harm concealed by undissected experience of success...

Here is the last paragraph of my abstract that inspired the chapter: 

Battlefield losses often inspire great soul searching and political, military, and cultural reform, while winning a war brings a whole new set of problems.  From Rome to Britain, to American policy after World War II, the burden of hegemonic leadership is often assumed vigorously after outstanding military victory, but often unravels from within due to the demands of money and men and a slow decay of society’s ability, and desire, to furnish them.


Manda said...

Like-mindedness certainly is a great cause for increased confidence! Although I think your words were more succinct.

Morgan Deane said...

That's funny, I thought he explained it better.