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Baron de Jomini, Summary of the Art of War, or a New Analytical Compend of the Principle Combinations of Strategy, of Grand Tactics and of Military Policy. (ed. Major O. F. Winship , Assistant Adjutant General , U. S. A., Lieut. E. E. McLean , 1st Infantry, U. S. A.), Chapter 3: strategy. (search)
end the maxims upon lines of operations lengthened in depth, and those upon strategical reserves or eventual bases, as the only useful ones, and it is especially on those occasions that their application becomes indispensable. although they are far from sufficient for parrying all dangers. The campaign of 1812, so fatal to Napoleon, was nevertheless a model to cite of this kind: the care which he took to leave the prince de Schwartzenberg and Reynier upon the Bug, whilst that Macdonald, Oudinot and Wrede guarded the Dwina, that Bellune came to cover Smolensk, and that Augereau came to relieve him between the Oder and the Vistula, proves that he had neglected none of the humanly possible precautions, for basing himself suitably: but it proves also that the grandest enterprises perish through the magnitude even of the preparations which are made to secure their success. If Napoleon committed faults in this gigantic struggle, they were those of having too much neglected political
Baron de Jomini, Summary of the Art of War, or a New Analytical Compend of the Principle Combinations of Strategy, of Grand Tactics and of Military Policy. (ed. Major O. F. Winship , Assistant Adjutant General , U. S. A., Lieut. E. E. McLean , 1st Infantry, U. S. A.), Chapter 4: grand tactics, and battles. (search)
As regards Hohenlinden, we should vainly seek in military history for another example where a single brigade adventured in a forest in the midst of fifty thousand men, produces there all the miracles which Richepanse operated in that cut-throat place of Matenpot, where it was much more probable that he would be obliged to lay down his arms. At Wagram, the turning wing of Davoust had a great part in the success of the day; but if. the vigorous attack executed on the centre by Macdonald, Oudinot and Bernadotte had not opportunely seconded it, it is not certain that it would have been so. So many examples of opposite results might cause it to be concluded that there is no rule to give upon this matter, but this would be wrong, for it appears to me on the contrary evident: That by adopting in general a system of battles very compact, and well connected, we will be found in condition to meet every contingency, and will leave little to chance; but it is important, nevertheless
Baron de Jomini, Summary of the Art of War, or a New Analytical Compend of the Principle Combinations of Strategy, of Grand Tactics and of Military Policy. (ed. Major O. F. Winship , Assistant Adjutant General , U. S. A., Lieut. E. E. McLean , 1st Infantry, U. S. A.), Chapter 6: logistics, or the practical art of moving armies. (search)
pain in 1809, by the preparations of Austria, and certain of having war with that power, despatched Berthier to Bavaria with the delicate mission of assembling the army, all dispersed from Strasburg to Erfurt. Davoust returned from this city, Oudinot from Frankfort, Massena enroute for Spain, retrograded by Strasburg upon Ulm; the Saxons, the Bavarians and Wurtembergers quitted their respective countries. Immense distances separated thus those corps, and the Austrians, united a long time si general had not perceived, in dispatching ten copies of the famous decree, that by mistake the bridge of the centre had been assigned to Davoust, although he should have formed the right wing, whilst the bridge of the right had been assigned to Oudinot, who was to form the centre. These two corps thus crossed each other during the night, and but for the intelligence of the regiments and their chiefs, the most horrible disorder might have prevailed. Thanks to the inaction of the enemy, they w
Baron de Jomini, Summary of the Art of War, or a New Analytical Compend of the Principle Combinations of Strategy, of Grand Tactics and of Military Policy. (ed. Major O. F. Winship , Assistant Adjutant General , U. S. A., Lieut. E. E. McLean , 1st Infantry, U. S. A.), chapter 7 (search)
, (fig. 3.) We have seen in the late wars, divisions of twelve battalions deployed and compressed behind each other, forming thirty-six crowded and accumulated ranks. Such masses are exposed to the ravages of artillery, diminish mobility and impulsion, without adding any strength. This was one of the causes of the small success of the French at Waterloo. If the column of Macdonald succeeded better at Wagram, it paid dearly for it, and but for the success of the attacks of Davoust and of Oudinot upon the left of the Arch-Duke, it is not probable that it would have came out victorious from the position in which, for a moment, it saw itself placed. When it is decided to risk such a mass, it is necessary, at least, to take care to establish upon each flank a battalion marching by files, in order that if the enemy chanced to charge in force upon those flanks, it would not oblige the column to halt, (see fig. 3;) protected by those battalions which will face to the enemy, it will be