Friday, July 2, 2021

Five Rules of Great Wars

Five rules that people should keep in mind when their nation goes to fight a great war: 

1. You never win the great war that you start out to fight, because as the fighting progresses, the great war evolves into something else. 

2. The great war is not won on the battlefield but in the postwar negotiations. Your nation might win the great war, but lose heavily during the postwar negotiations. 

3. The great war rarely leads to a great peace—instead, it leads to a series of smaller wars and a cold war in which the belligerent nations continue their geopolitical contest. 

4. There aren’t any innocent bystanders in a great war. Civilians in all the nations that are fighting in the great war are a target. 

5. No war plan survives the first contact with the enemy.

(By a great war I mean a war that lasts for three or more years and involves four or more nations.)

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