"Relation between strategy and tactics"
Strategy and Tactics
"Do not repeat the strategy which have gained you one victory, but let your methods be regulated by the infinite variety of circumstances." – Sun Tzu Art of War
Strategy and tactics are closely related. Both deal with distance, time and force but strategy is large scale while tactics are small scale.
Originally strategy was understood to govern the prelude to a battle while tactics controlled its execution. However, in the world wars of the 20th century, the distinction between manoeuvre and battle, strategy and tactics, became blurred.
Tactics that were once the province of a company of cavalry would be applied to a panzer army.
It is often said that the art of strategies defines the goals to achieve in a military campaign, while tactics defines the methods to achieve these goals.
Strategic goals could be "We want to conquer area X", or "We want to stop country Y's expansion in world trade in commodity Z"; while tactical decisions range from "We're going to do this by a naval invasion of the North of country X", "We're going to blockade the ports of country Y", all the way down to "C Platoon will attack while D platoon provides fire cover".
In its purest form, strategy dealt solely with military issues.
In earlier societies, a king or political leader was often the same person as the military leader. If he was not, the distance of communication between the political and the military leader was small.
But as the need of a professional army grew, the bounds between the politicians and the military came to be recognized.
In many cases, it was decided that there was a need for a separation. As French statesman Georges Clemenceau said, "war is too important a business to be left to soldiers." This gave rise to the concept of the grand strategy which encompasses the management of the resources of an entire nation in the conduct of warfare.
In the environment of the grand strategy, the military component is largely reduced to operational strategy -- the planning and control of large military units such as corps and divisions. As the size and number of the armies grew and the technology to communicate and control improved, the difference between "military strategy" and "grand strategy" shrank.
Fundamental to grand strategy is the diplomacy through which a nation might forge alliances or pressure another nation into compliance, thereby achieving victory without resorting to combat. Another element of grand strategy is the management of the post-war peace.
As Clausewitz stated, a successful military strategy may be a means to an end, but it is not an end in itself. There are numerous examples in history where victory on the battlefield has not translated into long term peace, security or tranquility.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia - Military Strategy.
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