Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Re: Moltke "initiated" WW1?/Schlieffen

Expand Messages
  • holderlin66
    http://www.maxwell.af.mil/au/aul/aupress/Books/b-55/heartch6.htm By now it was obvious to almost everyone in the room that the CINC was beginning to like what
    Message 1 of 4 , Jun 2, 2004
    • 0 Attachment

      "By now it was obvious to almost everyone in the room that the CINC
      was beginning to like what he was hearing. Warden continued,
      covering suppression of enemy air defenses and psychological
      operations. Gathering momentum, he then talked about exactly what
      the Instant Thunder plan would produce. In Warden's view, the
      executed plan would destroy Saddam Hussein's power base and leave
      his offensive military capability degraded and difficult to rebuild.
      It would also severely disrupt Iraq's economy. Unlike the postwar
      military, however, Iraq's economy could be quickly restored. Warden
      referred to this entire effort as a kind of modern-day Schlieffen

      *A war plan conceived in 1906 by Count Alfred von Schlieffen, the
      German chief of staff, to destroy France before the Russians had
      time to complete their mobilization. In order to avoid a war on two
      fronts, Schlieffen wanted to invade France through Belgium with a
      massive, right-flanking movement. He intended to crush the French
      forces against their own defenses in an encirclement as effective as
      the one Hannibal used against the Romans at Cannae, Italy. The
      German forces would then quickly turn and defeat the Russians.
      Unfortunately for the Germans, Schlieffen died in 1914, and the
      execution of the plan fell to Helmuth von Moltke (the younger), who
      diluted the right flank to support forces engaged against the
      Russians. Critically weakened, the German offensive stalled and then
      collapsed. No doubt, General Schwarzkopf was unhappy about Warden's
      comparing Instant Thunder to a plan that failed.

      "Don't call it the Schlieffen Plan!" said Schwarzkopf, gesturing
      toward the Instant Thunder slides.

      "But it is the Schlieffen Plan," countered Warden, "rotated into the
      third dimension!"27 Since Schwarzkopf did not pursue the argument,
      the discussion returned to the question of exactly when the forces
      could be in-theater and available for tasking.

      "If we're talking about the end of September, I'm not worried," said

      General Meier, who had said nothing since introducing the briefing,
      piped in, "[Air Force Chief of Staff] Dugan thinks it's executable
      mid-September and risk-acceptable to do it even earlier."28

      Schwarzkopf nodded. "We can't flow air and land simultaneously."

      "We're not recommending how you make your [flow] choices," said
      Meier, casting a knowing glance at Warden. The two men had been at
      odds over making flow recommendations to the CINC ever since Meier
      got involved in the planning process. Warden wanted to change the
      flow to get more of the right kinds of aircraft needed to execute
      Instant Thunder as soon as possible, but Meier was dead-set against
      even trying to deal with the issue.29

      Burt Moore, Schwarzkopf's operations general, gestured toward the
      slides. "These are only forces assigned to you. Turkey forces [sic]
      are not considered, [and] a fourth carrier's not included."30

      Not wanting to be left out, Warden interjected that during the
      meeting of 11 August, General Powell indicated that getting
      permission to use Turkey as a base of operations would be
      politically difficult.31 Schwarzkopf cut him off with a wave of the
      hand, pointed a meaty index finger at him, and said, "I told you to
      look at a plan not able to launch from Saudi Arabia."32 The room
      suddenly went quiet. Now it was Warden's turn to sweat. During the
      first briefing, the CINC had told him to consider an option that
      didn't include basing in Saudi Arabia. But with only seven days to
      prepare a comprehensive, executable plan, he simply hadn't had time
      to think about it, let alone produce something! Besides, in Warden's
      view, it didn't make any sense! Why plan to commit forces to restore
      order and economic stability to a region if the major friendly force
      in that region was unwilling to let you in?"
    • holderlin66
      Clausewitz: Total War http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/894819/posts Clausewitz went on to document his fascination with the concept of total war as it
      Message 2 of 4 , Jun 2, 2004
      • 0 Attachment
        Clausewitz: Total War


        "Clausewitz went on to document his fascination with the concept of
        total war as it was defined by Napoleon's overbearing and
        indiscriminate methods in his influential book On War. The book
        produced the famous quote, "War is nothing other than the
        continuation of state policy by different means," a sentiment that
        pales in comparison to the remainder of his theory.

        J.F.C. Fuller, the British historian, noted that Clausewitz "never
        grasped the true aim of war was peace, not victory." Indeed,
        Clausewitz created further confusion with his theory, that war had
        three specific aims: "To conquer and destroy the enemy's armed
        force, to get possession of the material elements of aggression, and
        to gain public opinion." The problem was that by using the model of
        total war and subjecting the enemy's civilian population to
        brutality, how could he expect to gain public opinion? Few examples
        in history had been shown to support this.

        Another Prussian, Helmuth von Moltke, took the Clausewitz maxim of
        war as an instrument of policy and rejected the rest of On War,
        going on to create the modern general-staff and launch three
        successful and progressive campaigns that transformed Prussia into
        modern Germany. He did this without being universally destructive
        and unlimited in his goals. With Prussian chancellor Otto von
        Bismarck, Moltke carved out the German state with the goal of not
        extending the country's interests beyond the point that other powers
        could live with. However, the two would split on their tactics in
        the Franco-Prussian War when, after surrounding Paris and
        effectively winning victory, Bismarck decided to "possess" the city
        by breaking the Parisians' spirits through artillery bombardment.
        Moltke protested, citing that the bombing would likely stiffen not
        weaken French resistance. Bismarck ordered the bombing anyway and
        certainly added to the foundation for future conflict between the

        The bombing of Paris can be correlated to the War of 1812 in which
        the assaults of the British on the innocents of the U.S. and the
        razing of Washington, DC were attempts to break the will of the
        population to fight. Instead, the action galvanized the will of the
        American people and led to the final defeat of the British on our
        soil and inspired our national anthem which reminds all who sing it
        of the strength of our convictions then and now.

        Uncivil War

        Perhaps no conflict better illustrates the depth of destructiveness
        of Clausewitz's vision of war than the American Civil War. And while
        the cause of the war is open to debate, the greater effect it had on
        the fabric of this country is timeless for the actions of one man:
        William Tecumseh Sherman.

        Sherman truly represented both the progressive war of Frederick the
        Great and the failure of total war of Clausewitz. In his infamous
        march from Atlanta to the sea and journey north through the
        Carolinas, he brilliantly deprived the Confederate army of vital
        supply lines by destroying railways, roads, bridges, and telegraph
        wires while systematically defeating his adversaries and destroying
        their access to arms. But he didn't stop at meeting military goals.
        He also unleashed violence on the people that was comparable to a
        Roman punitive raid and declared that he was at war with every man,
        woman, and child in the south. He and his troops acted in such a
        barbaric fashion against noncombatants, coupled with the heavy
        handed destruction of the south, that it plagued the period of
        Reconstruction. But his greater legacy is the hatred of many
        southerners to this day and the continuation of division between the
        states and the central government. The union was maintained but the
        cost was great, and much of that cost can be attributed to Sherman.

        Terror Finds a Home

        Terrorism made a critical advance in the aftermath of World War I in
        Russia where the Bolshevik Revolution led by Vladimir Lenin
        established the "worker's state". Finally there was a state that
        would foster the ideology and the practice of terror as well as fund
        it to fruition. Lenin spoke of terror in a prescient fashion when he
        warned his comrades that "our duty is to warn most energetically
        against too much fascination by terror, against regarding it as the
        main and basic means of struggle, something to which so many are
        inclined at this time."

        The Treaty of Versailles and President Woodrow Wilson's commitment
        to the League of Nations (later to be named the United Nations) all
        but sealed the fate of Germany for the next Great War, which ended
        up being nothing more but the continuation of the first. Nor did it
        bode well for the future that the League would leave the Arabian
        Peninsula, which had risen against the Ottoman Empire, hamstrung
        with European mandates, protectorates, and spheres of influence. It
        was only by action by the Senate that the U.S. did not participate
        in the League in order to maintain American military authority.

        Wilson was convinced that the root of the problem in Germany
        was "Prussianism", but he was wrong. Kaiser Wilhelm was the master
        of the tactics of poison gas and murder of civilians in Belgium, and
        while he was Prussian, his tactics would have appalled Frederick the
        Great and stood in stark contrast to the progressive warfare of

        Moreover, Wilson had neglected to note that France, not Prussia, had
        been far more guilty of consistently raising egomaniacal kings and
        emperors to sweep the continent seeking domination. History was
        becoming a stumbling block and the post-war period from 1918 to 1939
        set the stage for even greater conflict. Germany was stripped of its
        war machine and later the Great Depression seized the world plunging
        the country in to economic chaos and fomenting contempt from its
      Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.