Game Changer

Poland has just changed the rules for the Ukrainians. By offering to send a company of Leopard II to them, they have opened the possibility of rapid manoeuvre and devastating striking force. We have long debated the force on force worthiness of the Leo II vs the T80/T90 and soon we shall see who was right. When I was a major we had similar debates … Continue reading Game Changer


I have just published a new book, which you can find on the My Books page. This book is about more than just battlefield leadership.  Tactical skill and masterful maneuver is not enough.  Leaders need to master the principles of command.  Command skills are building blocks.  Leadership is the mortar that binds them together.  Years ago, NATO became enamoured of a uniquely German leadership philosophy called Auftragstaktik (translated as Mission Command).  But as … Continue reading Leadership

Invasion of Ukraine

The continuing tragedy unfolding in Eastern Ukraine is at risk of becoming so commonplace as to lose the world’s attention. In light of this risk, I set about reviewing the underlying political motives, which sparked the invasion. Before the Russians crossed the border friends asked me if Putin would invade. I was convinced that he would not, since I believed that he had already achieved … Continue reading Invasion of Ukraine

Russian Warfare

Winston Churchill once said: Battles are won by slaughter and maneuver. The greater the general, the more he contributes in maneuver, the less he demands in slaughter. What we are seeing in Ukraine is generalship of the worst kind. Like the child in the midst of a temper tantrum, the Russian military is attempting to bring Ukraine to its knees by senseless slaughter and wanton … Continue reading Russian Warfare

Offence vs Defence

One of the conclusions that Carl von Clausewitz reaches in his study On War is that the defence is the stronger form of war. (There are only two forms, hence the comparative tense.) Many of my students have found this difficult to understand, especially if they were American and raised on the idea that the ‘best defence is a strong offence.’ “The defensive form of … Continue reading Offence vs Defence

History Echoes

Public intellectual Tariq Ali once said that history echoes. Mark Twain said that history does not repeat itself, but that it often rhymes. In other words, the names and places and even the circumstances change but often we see the lessons of the past needing to be relearned in the present. It is a sad truth; it is part of the human condition. Learning is … Continue reading History Echoes


The Invasion of Ukraine offers a lesson to all those would would know more about military operations. Although this tragedy has not been going on for long, there is one lesson that stands out above all others. It is arguably the least ‘sexy’ but the most important: logistics. During my early life as an armour officer, I knew little of logistics and cared even less. … Continue reading Logistics