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Military Theory and Strategy (cont). Lsn 3. Agenda. Forms of Maneuver Levels of War Elements of Operational Design Basic Army Elements. Forms of Maneuver. Forms of Maneuver. The five forms of maneuver are the envelopment, turning movement, infiltration, penetration, and

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Agenda

  • Forms of Maneuver

  • Levels of War

  • Elements of Operational Design

  • Basic Army Elements



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Forms of Maneuver

  • The five forms of maneuver are the

    • envelopment,

    • turning movement,

    • infiltration,

    • penetration, and

    • frontal attack.



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Envelopment

  • The envelopment is a form of maneuver in which an attacking force seeks to avoid the principal enemy defenses by seizing objectives to the enemy rear to destroy the enemy in his current positions.

  • Envelopments avoid the enemy front, where he is protected and can easily concentrate fires.

  • Single envelopments maneuver against one enemy flank; double envelopments maneuver against both. Either variant can develop into an encirclement.

  • Example: The Germans conducted a double envelopment of the Russians in the World War I battle of Tannenberg.



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Turning Movement

  • A turning movement is a form of maneuver in which the attacking force seeks to avoid the enemy's principal defensive positions by seizing objectives to the enemy rear and causing the enemy to move out of his current positions or divert major forces to meet the threat.

  • A major threat to his rear forces the enemy to attack or withdraw rearward, thus "turning" him out of his defensive positions.

  • Turning movements typically require greater depth than other forms of maneuver.

  • Example: The Inchon landing in the Korean War



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Infiltration

  • An infiltration is a form of maneuver in which an attacking force conducts undetected movement through or into an area occupied by enemy forces to occupy a position of advantage in the enemy rear while exposing only small elements to enemy defensive fires

    • Typically, forces infiltrate in small groups and reassemble to continue their mission.

    • Infiltration rarely defeats a defense by itself. Commanders direct infiltrations to attack lightly defended positions or stronger positions from the flank and rear, to secure key terrain to support the decisive operation, or to disrupt enemy sustaining operations.

    • Example: Hutier tactics in World War I



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Penetration

  • A penetration is a form of maneuver in which an attacking force seeks to rupture enemy defenses on a narrow front to disrupt the defensive system.

    • Commanders direct penetrations when enemy flanks are not assailable or time does not permit another form of maneuver. Successful penetrations create assailable flanks and provide access to enemy rear areas.

    • Because penetrations frequently are directed into the front of the enemy defense, they risk significantly more friendly casualties than envelopments, turning movements, and infiltrations.

    • Example: Sherman’s Meridian Campaign and his March to the Sea



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Frontal attack

  • The frontal attack is frequently the most costly form of maneuver, since it exposes the majority of the attackers to the concentrated fires of the defenders.

    • As the most direct form of maneuver, however, the frontal attack is useful for overwhelming light defenses, covering forces, or disorganized enemy resistance.

    • It is often the best form of maneuver for hasty attacks and meeting engagements, where speed and simplicity are essential to maintain tempo and the initiative.

    • Commanders may direct a frontal attack as a shaping operation and another form of maneuver as the decisive operation.

    • Example: The Charge of the Light Brigade in the Crimean War


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Levels of War

  • Strategic

  • Operational

  • Tactical


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Levels of War

  • Strategic

    • Level at which a nation, often as a member of a group of nations, determines national or multinational strategic security objectives and guidance, and develops and uses national resources to accomplish these objectives


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Example: The Allies’ Strategic Objective for Europe in World War II

  • Combined Chiefs directed Eisenhower to “enter the continent of Europe and, in conjunction with other Allied nations, undertake operations aimed at the heart of Germany and the destruction of her armed forces”


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Levels of War

  • Operational

    • Level at which campaigns and major operations are conducted and sustained to accomplish strategic objectives within theaters or areas of operation

    • Link tactics and strategy


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Example: Eisenhower’s Operational Objective at Normandy

  • Secure a foothold on the continent of Europe from which to support offensive operations against Germany


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Levels of War

  • Tactical

    • Level at which battles and engagements are planned and executed to accomplish military objectives assigned to tactical units or task forces


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Example: Tactical Objectives of the Airborne Forces on D-Day

  • Secure exits from the beaches to allow the amphibious forces to move inland

  • Block German counterattack routes to protect amphibious forces


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Strategy

  • Strategy is the pursuit, protection, or advancement of national interests through the application of the instruments of power

  • Instruments of power (DIME)

    • Diplomatic

    • Informational

    • Military

    • Economic


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Traditional Military Strategies

  • Attrition

    • The reduction of the effectiveness of a force caused by loss of personnel and materiel

  • Exhaustion

    • The gradual erosion of a nation’s will or means to resist

  • Annihilation

    • Seeks the immediate destruction of the combat power of the enemy’s armed forces


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Operations

  • Campaigns are the operational extension of the commander’s strategy

  • They are a series of related military operations aimed at accomplishing a strategic or operational objective within a given time and space

  • Campaigns should be planned to adhere to the “elements of operational design”



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Elements of Operational Design

  • Synergy

  • Simultaneity and depth

  • Anticipation

  • Balance

  • Leverage

  • Timing and tempo

  • Operational reach and approach


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Elements of Operational Design (cont)

  • Forces and functions

  • Arranging operations

  • Centers of gravity

  • Direct versus indirect

  • Decisive points

  • Culmination

  • Termination


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Elements of Operational Design (cont)

  • Synergy

    • Seek combinations of forces and actions to achieve concentrations in various dimensions, all culminating in attaining the assigned objective(s) in the shortest time possible and with minimum casualties

    • Example: In the US Civil War Jackson’s Shenandoah Valley Campaign relieved pressure on Lee outside of Richmond.

  • Simultaneity and depth

    • Place more demands on adversary forces than can be handled both in terms of time and space

    • Example: Operation Just Cause (Panama) in 1989 involved simultaneously attacking 26 separate locations.


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Elements of Operational Design (cont)

  • Anticipation

    • Remain alert for the unexpected and opportunities to exploit the situation

    • Example: Believing the Arab armies were poised to strike, Israel launched a preemptive strike in the 1967 Six-Day War.

  • Balance

    • Maintain the force, its capabilities, and its operations in such a manner as to contribute to freedom of action and responsiveness

    • Example: The Allies decided on a “Germany First” strategy for World War II.


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Elements of Operational Design (cont)

  • Leverage

    • Gain, maintain, and exploit advantages in combat power across all dimensions

    • Example: In World War I the Germans leveraged new technology by waging unrestricted submarine warfare.

  • Timing and tempo

    • Conduct operations at a tempo and point in time that best exploits friendly capabilities and inhibits the adversary

    • Example: The German Blitzkrieg of World War II maximized speed.


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Elements of Operational Design (cont)

  • Operational reach and approach

    • The distance over which military power can mass effects and be employed decisively

    • Example: In the Korean War, the North Koreans overextend their operational reach making them vulnerable to having their line of communications cut at Seoul.

  • Forces and functions

    • Focus on defeating either adversary forces or functions, or a combination of both

    • Example: Sherman’s March to the Sea targeted Confederate functions of war-making ability and while at the same time Grant’s Overland Campaign targeted Lee’s forces.


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Elements of Operational Design (cont)

  • Arranging operations

    • Achieve dimensional superiority by a combination of simultaneous and sequential operations

    • Phases: Deter/engage, Seize initiative, Decisive operations, Transition

    • Example: The coalition air campaign in Operation Desert Storm created the conditions necessary for the ground campaign.

  • Centers of gravity

    • Those characteristics, capabilities, or sources of power from which a military force derives its freedom of action, physical strength, or will to fight

    • Destroying or neutralizing adversary centers of gravity is the most direct path to victory

    • Example: The North Vietnamese effectively influenced the US center of gravity of domestic support during the Vietnam War.


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Elements of Operational Design (cont)

  • Direct versus indirect

    • To the extent possible, attack centers of gravity directly, but where direct attack means attacking into an opponent’s strength seek an indirect approach

    • Example: The North Vietnamese used guerrilla tactics to neutralize the US firepower advantage in Vietnam.

  • Decisive points

    • Usually geographic in nature, but can sometimes be key events or systems

    • Give a marked advantage to whoever controls them

    • Keys to attacking protected centers of gravity

    • Example: Each of the bridges in Operation Market Garden in World War II was a decisive point.


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Elements of Operational Design (cont)

  • Culmination

    • Point in time and space at which an attacker’s combat power no longer exceeds that of the defender or the defender no longer can preserve his force

    • Example: Napoleon was defeated in Moscow in 1812 by “General Winter.”

  • Termination

    • Military operations typically conclude with attainment of the strategic ends for which the military force was committed, which then allows transition to other instruments of national power and agencies as the means to achieve broader goals

    • Example: Transitioning from combat victory to a self-sustaining democracy in Iraq proved illusive to US forces in Operation Iraqi Freedom.


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Basic Army Elements

  • Squads

  • Platoons

  • Companies

  • Battalions

  • Brigades

    • Regiments

  • Divisions

  • Corps

  • Armies


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Next

  • The Seven Years’ War


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