Archive for April 25th, 2016

Like any art, the craft of battle requires proper tools, good craftsmanship and a little inspiration.  In this case, the proper tools are good weapons, sound tactics and effective organization.  Although these differ a bit from army to army, there is little to be gained by any one, or any combinations of them against a corresponding combination in the enemy’s bag.  In other words, systems, tactics and organization are about even.
What makes the difference in battle?  It is the excellence of the craftsmanship and the combined inspiration of soldiers and leaders.  It is the excellence of the training, the quality of the leaders and the courage of the soldiers, there is no doubt.  The problem is to get that courage harnessed in usable fashion and put to work on the battlefield.  That is a problem for leaders.  May I further suggest that the day of the instant hero is gone – the time when charisma alone can be made to suffice for technical skill and excellence in battle is past.  Certainly, this is so when one considers the number of competent leaders who will be required to win in modern war.  A few may be charismatic in addition to being technically competent;  many, many more will not.  Therefore, the leader problem is likewise a training problem.  Quality leadership comes from sound training of leaders.
Sergeants are leaders.  Sergeants’ business is leadership.  Therefore, the sergeants must be trained as leaders – not as administrators.  The cement that binds together good weapons, sound tactics and effective organizations into winning battle teams is training.  Training develops excellence in the skills of leaders and soldiers, to the end that they have both the capability to fight the tough battles and win, and the conviction that they can and must fight hard and well, and that, if they do, and have a little luck, they will win against all odds.
     —    General Donn A. Starry
U. S. Army
On This Day In:
2015 However Vast The Darkness
2014 The Omnipresent Teacher
2013 Don’t Waste
2012 Earning Thanks
2011 Fuzzy Vision
2010 Movies and Book

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