Airpower & the Cult of the Offensive by John R. Carter

By John R. Carter

Significant Carter explores 3 case stories that experience vital similarities: the doctrine of serious Britain's Royal Air strength from 1918 to 1938, the Israeli Air Force's method from 1967 to 1973, and the USA Air Force's method from 1953 to 1965. He starts off by means of constructing the theoretical historical past worthy for case research research. He dissects the connection among offense and security to find that airpower safeguard enjoys neither a bonus of place nor of time. He examines the character of offense and protection as they follow to airpower and gives purposes army association might favor offensive doctrines. significant Carter identifies the weather and implications of the cult of the offensive.

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Extra resources for Airpower & the Cult of the Offensive

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Liddell Hart published Paris; Or, The Future of War, in 1925, Trenchard felt so strongly that it conveyed the essence of airpower employment that he required all RAF officers to read it. 63 In the book, Liddell Hart identified an enemy population’s will to continue as the key to victory in war. Furthermore, he claimed that an air campaign offered a method to attack enemy will directly, quickly, and with fewer casualties than a land or sea campaign. 64 Around the same time, the Committee of Imperial Defence (CID) established the Air Raid Precautions Committee to study the problem of air defense.

60 From the RAF’s very beginning, the mission of strategic bombing became inextricably linked with the justification for an independent air service. As the RAF fought for bureaucratic survival in the 1920s after World War I, its chief of staff, Air Marshal (later Lord) Trenchard, used the promised effects of strategic bombing to secure the RAF’s position against the other services. 61 Such claims further fueled interservice rivalry, which caused Trenchard to claim even more significance for the RAF’s mission.

37 The first two simplification elements serve to exaggerate any existing systemic bias. As doctrine is distilled to ease its transmission and assimilation throughout an organization, simplified rules of thumb colored by any existing bias replace the more complex processes that reflect the nuances inherent in actual employment. Offensive doctrines address the latter two needs because, in general, offense permits more detailed planning than defense. It is easier to forecast requirements after seizing the initiative than while reacting to an opponent’s moves.

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