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German Army vs. Soviet Partisans
Combat Mobile Unit Command Since Antiquity
203 pages; 8 chapters
Mobile Command is an e-book that purports to discuss the salient historical lessons learned
about mobile command from Genghis Khan to the modern era. In fact the discussion veers
sharply to a discussion of US military approaches to mobile command, which have never been
models to follow. However, the author is a modern US Army officer who has some feel for historical
patterns and his work may be valuable for that characteristic alone. The editor feels that more
attention should have been given to the masters of mobile command for their time, Napoleon,
the Wehrmacht and the Soviet Army. While it is true that the American approach to war is now
copied like its crude culture, all over the world. That is a very bad thing. Yet Mobile Command will
allow the reader to examine a few historical example of some importance and the graphics are
good. That is why Quikmaneuvers.com selected this book for its readers.
"After the failure of this campaign, the Germans revamped their communications systems, reintroduced the telegraph,
established a motor dispatch service, and added a new echelon of command, the army group. In a smaller campaign
concurrent with the actions in France, a single German army showed what command and control could accomplish
against a larger force. At Tannenberg, the German Eighth Army held off one Russian army and adroitly redeployed to
envelop and destroy another. Here the Germans were greatly helped by poor Russian command and control, which
included the sending of radio messages in the clear.
Von Moltke failed to properly execute his battle command in a campaign he expected to be mobile because he himself
remained immobile and depended on weak communications technology without any realistic redundancy. While the
technical aspects failed him, so too did organizational technique, which in past mobile campaigns had often managed to
make up for a lack of technology. Von Moltke’s span of control was too great, directly controlling seven field armies in the
west and an additional one in the east. It was unrealistic to expect to be able to control so many subordinates, most of
whom were in battle daily and pulling farther away from the immobile higher headquarters, even if the communications
were better. He was forced to fall back on the individual initiative of his subordinate commanders. Without an overall
commander available to coordinate and settle disputes, conflicts in intent like those between the impetuous von Kluck and
the cautious von Bülow would end up in each going their own way and the overall operation becoming a fait accompli
rather than the will of the commander."
Excerpt from Mobile Command
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