General

More Moltke

The combat power of infantry rests on the effect of its fire. It’s success depends on attaining fire superiority and exploiting it decisively and rapidly. For that reason, individual marksmanship training is of the utmost importance. Nevertheless, only correct and efficient fire control with fully exploit this training.The more fire effect is concentrated in time and target, the greater will be its moral effect. Numbers of hits alone are not decisive, but rather the resulting effect produced upon the morale of the enemy. The amount of ammunition carried along is limited. Senseless squandering of ammunition should be prevented by strict discipline. The infantry must husband its ammunition and should not fire at too great a range. But where a hostile unit is thoroughly shaken, or where its morale can be broken by enormous losses, every expenditure of ammunition is justified.

General Helmuth von Moltke, circa 1870

I came across this passage in my readings last night, and thought it very relevant to the post I put up a few days ago. While this blog is not intended as a strategy discussion, I thought this passage had appeal in a variety of ways. Not only is it important to have the capability to make hits when they count, but also know how and when to employ that ability for the greatest effect. In a way, this is the challenge for most things in life.

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