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Sun Tzu and the Art of Modern Warfare

Lee's Lieutenants: A Study in Command

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Sun Tzu and the Overland Campaign of 1864
Sun Tzu and the Overland Campaign of 1864 
by Richard Podruchny

This particular work looks at comparing the Overland Campaign of 1864 against Sun Tzu's six strategic principles that were extracted from the, "Art of War" by Mark McNeilly through his work, "Sun Tzu and the Art of Modern Warfare." The six principles that will be used are; win all without fighting, avoid strength, attack weakness, deception and foreknowledge, speed and preparation, and shaping the enemy.[1] By looking at this campaign and using these six principles, we will be able to see how the commander's of both the Army of the Potomac and the Army of Northern Virginia strategic principles compare or contrast to Sun Tzu due to their Napoleonic schooling in warfare. This will provide the reader a great example of how well or how poorly these two schools of thought coincided with one another that spanned thousands of years and miles apart.

The first principle that we will look at is, "Win all without fighting; achieving the objective without destroying it."[2] This particular campaign occurred during the third year of the War Between the States, where hostilities have been in effect, already violating this first principle of Sun Tzu. For the Union, their strategy for the Virginia Campaign of 1864 was the destruction of the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia. That being said, the main objective of the Union being the destruction of the Confederate army also violates Sun Tzu's first principle, since the Union appears to be following a war of attrition, which is what the Civil War has become in the Eastern Theater at the onset of the Overland Campaign.[3] For the overall commander of all Union forces, Lt. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant, this campaign was one of the most crucial campaigns of the war, since it was an integral part in his overall plan to defeat the Confederacy. This overall plan that Grant envisioned was to have all Union forces advance simultaneously in all theaters, capitalizing on the North's superior manpower and material resources.[4] This concept, if executed properly, would not provide the Confederates time in order to shift troops to needed locations if all of the Union armies were in a coordinated advance. The focus of this coordinated advance would be Lt. Gen Lee's Army of Northern Virginia where the Overland Campaign was meant to bleed Lee's army in a campaign of attrition where Grant knew that Lee would not have the manpower available to replenish what would be lost in battle. Through this strategy, we can see the first blatant violation in the first of Sun Tzu's six principles, as well as the hundreds if not thousands of miles of railroad infrastructure that will be destroyed during this campaign.[5]

Now that we have a broad idea as to what Grant wants to execute on a strategic level, we can now drill down and see what he proposes to do within the Eastern Theater. His plan for the Eastern Theater called for three major armies to conduct mutually supporting advances. Grant would order MG Franz Sigel's forces to move south through the Shenandoah Valley, defeat the Confederate forces there and remove the Shenandoah Valley as a source of supply. Next, Grant would also order MG Benjamin Butler's Army of the James to advance up the Virginia Peninsula between the James and York Rivers toward Richmond. This movement by Butler was expected to have mixed results since Butler's army had the possibility of capturing Richmond, while at a minimum, Grant hoped it would divert a significant number of Confederate forces away from his main advance. This main advance would fall on MG George Meade's Army of the Potomac, which was to engage the Army of Northern Virginia. The instructions that Grant gave to Meade was essentially that wherever Lee goes, he will also go. This particular order by Grant was a significant one because it was a drastic departure to previous campaigns where Richmond was the target versus the main Confederate force in the field.[6]

Figure 1 Grant's Plan for the 1864 Campaign[7]

To further explain the Union strategy, Grant wrote a letter to MG Henry W. Halleck, who was the U.S. Army's Chief of Staff, which outlines Grant's overall strategy for the upcoming campaign season. In the letter, Grant requests additional troops, which is not from a standpoint of him possessing inferior numbers but from a possibility of going into siege operations against Richmond. It appears that he feels that his present force will not be adequate enough to maintain both offensive and siege operations. Grant wants the focus of the war to turn to operations in Georgia for the capture of Atlanta and the destruction of LG Joseph E. Johnston's Army of Tennessee, as well as the destruction of the Army of Northern Virginia. In other words, nothing should be happening in the other theaters unless it is in direct cooperation with the maneuvers that have already been stated. Grant also states in his letter that orders need to be given to those remaining theaters that nothing should be attempted until the Confederacy is subdued east of the Mississippi River.[8] By focusing the Union's attention on the Confederacy's two major armies in the field and rendering them ineffective, Grant feels that the rest of the South will capitulate and finally end the war. From this line of reasoning, it appears that through fighting the Confederacy's main armies in a concerted effort, Grant may be able to subdue the rest of the South without further conflict, which falls in line with Sun Tzu's first strategic principle.[9]

As for the Confederacy, the Overland Campaign became part of a defensive strategy that was more the result of necessity than of choice. At this point of the war, the Southern strategy seemed to be to exhaust the will of the people in the North with the hope the President Lincoln would lose the presidential election in the fall of 1864.[10] Even from the beginning of the war, the Confederacy adopted a defensive strategy, which can be called a strategy of attrition.[11] This strategy adopted a standpoint of winning by not losing, which meant by wearing out a better equipped enemy and compelling him to give up by prolonging the war and making it too costly. By comparing this with the Northern strategy, the South would also violate Sun Tzu's first principle by seeking a war of attrition. Unfortunately, two factors prevented President Jefferson Davis from carrying this out except in a limited fashion; the first being the demands by the state governors, congressmen and citizens for troops to defend every potion of the Confederacy. This led to dispersing manpower so thinly that Union forces broke through at several points in 1862. The second factor was the temperament of the Southern people, where the populace did not want to wait to be attacked but to take the fight to the enemy. From these two factors, an offensive-defensive strategy was adopted. Through the use of interior lines, the Confederacy could be defended by concentrating dispersed forces and it offered the opportunity to go on the offensive, as well as even to the extent of invading the North.[12] Another factor that can be considered as to why the Confederacy lacked a unified strategy was that President Davis refused to appoint a commander-in-chief and he retained that mantle of command for himself.[13] This meant that all of the Confederacy's fielded armies would report directly to him. With that being said, President did not issue an overall strategic plan for the year of 1864. This would have a dramatic impact on the Eastern Theater where there was no unified command system to coordinate the efforts of Lee's army with the forces under MG John Breckinridge in the Shenandoah Valley and MG Pierre G. T. Beauregard's forces protecting Richmond, southern Virginia and northern North Carolina. Due to the amount of respect that President Davis had for Lee, Lee would often indirectly provide the needed coordination for all Southern efforts in Virginia. Now at this point of the Civil War, Lee had been defeated in his two attempts to invade the North, and now, Lee was committed to a strategic defense that was intent on wearing down the North's resolve.[14] Even though he would be on the defensive, Lee had no intention of remaining passive and relinquishing the initiative. Instead, Lee intended to launch tactical and operational level attacks when the opportunity presented itself.

Now that we have seen how well or how poorly either the Confederacy or the Union performed against Sun Tzu's first strategic principle, we can now focus on the second principle, which was, "Avoid strength, attack weakness; Striking where the enemy is most vulnerable." For this portion, we will focus on the Union army, breaking down their strategic and operational level decisions. At the strategic level, we can see that the North's strategy is in line with Sun Tzu's second principle provided that by coordinating their operations they will overwhelm the South, since the South is now being pushed simultaneously and cannot utilize their interior lines to focus against one Union threat at a time. This can be seen where MG William T. Sherman's Army of the Tennessee has now begun its advance on Atlanta, Sigel's force advancing down the Shenandoah Valley, Butler's force advancing on Richmond and Meade's Army of the Potomac advancing on the Army of Northern Virginia. This coordinated offensive goes hand-in-hand with Sun Tzu's second principle while the North is now taking full advantage of the South's lack in manpower.[15]

At the operational level, Sun Tzu's second principle was being followed at the campaign's onset, since Grant was avoiding Lee's entrenchments in the Mine Run vicinity, which would force Lee's army out in the open.[16] For the Army of the Potomac, according to Meade's chief of staff BG Andrew Humphreys, they depended upon a quick start to the campaign, which meant by setting the entire army in motion at midnight on May 4, 1864.[17] By doing so, the army might move quickly beyond the Rapidan River the first day of operations and it would be able to pass out of the Wilderness and possibly turn Lee's right flank before a general engagement took place.[18] Through this maneuver in the Wilderness, Grant negated his strength in numbers and placed himself in an exposed position that Lee would exploit. By opting to go through the Wilderness, Grant violated Sun Tzu's second principle on an operational level.

At the conclusion of the Battle of the Wilderness, Grant called for another flanking maneuver around Lee's right flank in the vicinity of Spotsylvania Courthouse. This move would negate the prepared positions of Lee's army and force it to react to Grant's flanking maneuver by either fighting in the open or perhaps forcing Lee to attack the more numerous Army of the Potomac in prepared positions.[19] By seizing Spotsylvania Courthouse, the Army of the Potomac would be in a position to separate Lee's army from Richmond, effectively cutting the Army of Northern Virginia's line of communication.

Figure 2 Wilderness to the North Anna[20]

When the Battle of Spotsylvania Courthouse was concluded, Grant continued his flanking maneuvers around Lee's right flank that eventually led to the Battle of North Anna River and Cold Harbor. During the Battles of Spotsylvania Courthouse, North Anna River and Cold Harbor, Grant had his army attack prepared Confederate positions which directly violate the second principle of Sun Tzu.[21] However, this coincides with Grant's attrition based strategy that he will be able to get reinforcements, whereas every engagement would bleed Lee's army dry. The purpose behind Grant's continuous flanking maneuvers was to eventually corner Lee's army in Richmond or Petersburg, negating Lee's strength through maneuver.

From the Confederate's point of view and also beginning at their strategic level, they would keep in line with Sun Tzu's second principle by staying on the defensive and remaining behind their fortifications while retaining the capacity to conduct attacks on a more localized level as the opportunity presented itself. Lee wanted to avoid going to the battle in the open, since this is what Grant wanted to take full advantage of due to the Army of the Potomac's numerical superiority.[22] By doing so, Lee was able to stem Grant's strategy of attrition and avoiding his strength in numbers by forcing him to attack prepared positions that negated his strength.

Figure 3 Beginning of the Battle of the Wilderness[23]

At the operational level, Sun Tzu's second principle can be seen in action when Lee attacked the Army of the Potomac in the Battle of the Wilderness. In this battle, Lee avoided Grant's strength in numbers due to the heavily forested terrain. On the other hand, Lee attacked Grant's weakness since Grant could not take full advantage of his superiority in numbers. In the case of the Battle of Spotsylvania Courthouse, North Anna River and Cold Harbor, Lee was able to outmaneuver his opponent and only offer battle from prepared positions. This is yet another example of how Lee was able to avoid Grant's strength in numbers in open battle and negating that advantage through the use of fortifications.[24] For these three battles, this was not a case of attacking weakness as it was avoiding the strength in numbers that the Army of the Potomac possessed. Just to give the reader an idea of the disparity in numbers between the two armies at the Overland Campaign's onset, the Army of the Potomac had 121,178 members of all arms present for duty[25] compared to the 61,953 members of all arms[26] for the Army of Northern Virginia.

Now that we have seen how Sun Tzu's second principle was related to the Overland Campaign, we can now focus on his third principle, which is, "Deception and foreknowledge; winning the information war."[27] This third principle is broken down into four subcategories; knowing the enemy, knowing one's own capabilities, knowing the environment and utilizing deception.[28] We will first examine the Union army, which at this point during the Civil War is now in its fourth year and the Army of the Potomac has now become very familiar with Lee and his Army of Northern Virginia since the Army of the Potomac's army and corps commanders has virtually remained the same except for the additions of Grant and MG Phillip H. Sheridan. With Grant essentially in direct command of the Army of the Potomac, he would initially be at a disadvantage since he transferred from his Western Theater and he would have to discover who among his corps commanders could be trusted to do their jobs satisfactorily.[29]

For the Army of the Potomac overall, it had been operating in northern Virginia since 1861 and had become very familiar with the surrounding territory. For Grant, this was an area that he would have to become more familiar with since it was more cultivated and populated than the rough terrain of the Western Theater as well as still being relatively difficult country for maneuvering armies. The terrain was somewhat flat in this area of Virginia but it was cut by numerous waterways that proved difficult to traverse due to the abundant marshes. Another aspect to consider in this area of Virginia was the heavily forested and dense undergrowth type of terrain that existed especially in the vicinity of the Army of the Potomac's starting point in the Overland Campaign that resulted in the Battle of the Wilderness on May 4, 1864. Now further west, the ground had gentle hills with a few key heights such as Clark's Mountain that offered a dominating point of observation. As for the various rivers and waterways, they ran from northwest to southeast and acted as natural barriers, however, the Union dominance of the sea meant they could use the rivers as supply routes or lines of communication as long as they remained relatively close.[30]

As for utilizing deception, the clearest example of this in the Overland Campaign can be seen when Grant ordered the crossing of the James River. To make this a successful deception, Grant utilized Sheridan's cavalry to conduct a raid to cut the Virginia Central Railroad, which would essentially act as a diversion. Grant would execute this maneuver beginning on the Cold Harbor battlefield where the troops on his right flank, Lee's left flank, began the march to cross the James River. By doing so, it would leave the impression on Lee that Grant was maintaining his current position. To complete the deception, Grant had MG Gouverneur K. Warren's Fifth Corps establish a blocking position at Riddell's Shop to protect the maneuver and to deceive Lee into thinking Grant was making another short flanking maneuver between the Chickahominy and James Rivers.[31] This maneuver by Grant was the first time in this campaign that he had truly stolen a march on Lee even though he gained several slight advantages on his adversary.

Figure 4 North Anna to Petersburg[32]

Now that we have seen how the Union army related to Sun Tzu's third principle, we can now focus on the Confederate army and how they measure up to the third principle. For the Confederates, they were very similar in circumstances to the Army of the Potomac; however, Lee would be up against another Union general that has met with more success on the battlefield than any of his predecessors. At this point of the war, Lee was well aware of the fighting prowess his soldiers possessed; however, it would be the performance of his corps commanders and their subordinates that would set the stage for the outcome of this campaign. Within the First Corps, its commander was still LG James Longstreet and he shared a mutual respect with Lee that made him Lee's most trusted subordinate at the time of the Overland Campaign.[33] For the Second Corps, its commander was LG Richard S. Ewell who took over this command after LG Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson's death and was his most trusted subordinate.[34] Lastly, the Third Corps was commanded by LG Ambrose P. Hill who demonstrated a blemished performance at Gettysburg, as well as having serious health issues where he was in and out of command on several occasions in the last eighteen months of the war and even in command, he was often ill and unable to exercise dynamic leadership.[35]

As for knowing the environment, the Army of Northern Virginia was fighting on familiar ground. This familiarity was not just due to the four years of war, but several of its members lived and grew up in these areas. By gaining enlistments from these areas, it brought a level of familiarity the Army of the Potomac could not hope to possess.[36]

During the Overland Campaign, Lee found himself not in possession of the initiative. However, prior to the Battle of the North Anna River, there can be seen two examples of deception inadvertently used by Lee. The first instance was Lee's choice of ground along the North Anna River, where this disposition left the impression that there was only a rearguard protecting Lee's line of retreat. Due to Lee's location, the Army of the Potomac was divided in two and at an extreme tactical disadvantage since either side of the army would have to cross the North Anna River twice in order to reinforce the other.[37] The second example was Lee's Corps commander's lack of action against the Army of the Potomac's exposed position. This led Grant to believe the Army of Northern Virginia was all but beat, since Lee possessed such formidable defenses, he did not dare attack. At this point, Grant felt that his forces gained morale over the Army of Northern Virginia and victory was all but assured. However, Lee would make Grant pay for his false sense of security at the expense of lives at the Battle of Cold Harbor.[38]

Now that we have seen how Sun Tzu's third strategic principle was applied to the Overland Campaign, we will now focus our attention on Sun Tzu's fourth strategic principle, "Speed and preparation: Moving swiftly to overcome resistance."[39] Within this principle there are four advantages this principle provides, which are, "speed is a substitute for resources, surprises and shocks the enemy, exploits fleeting opportunities, and builds momentum."[40] Once again, we will begin with the Union army. Due to the sheer size of the Army of the Potomac at the beginning of the Overland Campaign, with 121,178[41] troops of all arms compared to the 61,953[42] troops of all arms for the Army of Northern Virginia, the first advantage of the fourth strategic principle does not seem to apply. At this point in the war, the Union armies benefitted from the industrial might of the North, which was in full swing during the fourth year of the Civil War.[43]

After the Battle of the Wilderness, Grant was able to both surprise and shock Lee because of his flanking maneuver that led to the Battle of Spotsylvania Courthouse. The surprise came from Grant's decision to attempt a flanking maneuver around Lee's right flank, which Lee was accustomed to a withdrawal by the Army of the Potomac after every encounter.[44] Another aspect of the surprise can be seen in how fast Grant and Meade were able to set the Army of the Potomac in motion towards Spotsylvania Courthouse.[45] Another example of speed and surprise in this campaign was Grant's decision to cross the James River. Due to the speed and care involved in keeping this hidden from Lee, Grant was able to keep Lee in the dark as to what he intended to do.[46]

From an operational standpoint, Grant's maneuvers were able to exploit Lee's weakness, which was avoiding open battle with Grant's superiority in numbers and saving his army. By doing so and never being able to win a decisive victory against Grant in this campaign, Lee had to give up territory in order to block Grant's advances and entrenching his positions every chance he got.[47]

Lastly, the momentum that Grant was able to produce began with his first flanking maneuver after the Battle of the Wilderness. This simple movement set the stage for the Army of Northern Virginia's eventual defeat and surrender. Even though Lee or Grant never won a decisive victory over the other, Grant was able to build upon this through his subordinates and troops, while instilling in them a confidence that he would not give up until Lee's army was destroyed and Richmond captured.[48]

As for the Army of Northern Virginia, the first advantage of speed being a substitute for resources holds true. However, during this campaign, the speed the Army of Northern Virginia exhibited was not so much used to destroy the Army of the Potomac as much as a means to counter Grant's movements. It would be through the use of speed that would shock Grant. This speed was utilized very successfully during the days prior to the Battle of the Wilderness where Lee was able to mitigate the disparity in numbers due to the terrain. After the Wilderness, it was the speed and luck of Lee's new First Corps commander, MG Richard H. Anderson that drove his corps on a night march to Spotsylvania Courthouse and occupying the key cross roads.[49] It would not be until Grant decided to cross the James River that Lee was able to successfully use the speed his command possessed to parry Grant's flanking movements.

Now that we have seen how both the Confederate and Union armies compare to Sun Tzu's fourth principle, the fifth principle will now be addressed. The fifth principle, "Shaping the enemy: preparing the battlefield," possesses three aspects that will be highlighted, which are "holding strategic positions, attacking the enemy's strategy and direct and indirect forces."[50] For the Union army, the aspect of holding strategic positions was what Grant wanted to achieve throughout the Overland Campaign. He wanted to be able to execute flanking movements that would have seized key road junctions such as Spotsylvania Courthouse, Hanover Junction and Cold Harbor.[51] By doing so, he would have been able to place the Army of the Potomac between the Army of Northern Virginia and Richmond, forcing Lee's smaller force to attack.

For the aspect of attacking the enemy's strategy, the Union was able to address this aspect very efficiently. They were able to attack the Confederate's defensive strategy and their advantage of interior lines by coordinating several operations to begin roughly the same time. These operations were the advance of Sigel's force down the Shenandoah Valley, Butler's advance on Richmond and Petersburg and Sherman's advance on Atlanta.[52]

The last aspect, direct and indirect forces, was focused on the Union's strategic and operational levels. For this campaign, the direct forces refer to the Army of the Potomac under Meade who would put constant pressure on Lee in Virginia and not letting him give up portions of his army to reinforce other threatened areas in the Confederacy as he did with Longstreet's Corps in the Battle of Chickamauga.[53] The indirect force used in Grant's strategy was Sherman's Army of Tennessee where Sherman would cut loose from his line of supply and live off the land while destroying the remaining infrastructure that supplied Lee's army through Georgia and the Carolinas.[54] Within Virginia, Grant would also take advantage of using indirect forces operationally, such as Sigel's force in the Shenandoah Valley, Butler's army operating against Richmond and Petersburg and Sheridan's cavalry force that would attempt raids on the Confederate supply line and Richmond itself.[55]

Figure 5 Battle of the North Anna[56]

In regards to the Confederates, Lee wanted to focus on preserving his army and by doing so, he would have to rely on his command's ability to outmaneuver the Army of the Potomac as well as possessing strategic locations that would force Grant and Meade to attack his army from prepared positions.[57] Some examples of this can be seen in the race of Spotsylvania Courthouse, the North Anna Rive and Cold Harbor. If Lee was not able to retain these key positions, it would force him to go on the offensive and potentially lose his army. The only way the Lee was going to counter Grant's strategy was through prolonging the war and causing tremendous casualties on the Army of the Potomac, which would result in the North losing its will to carry on the war.[58]

The only potential use of direct and indirect forces used in this campaign by Lee can be seen at the tactical level in the organization and disposition of his forces along the North Anna River.[59] Lee called for extensive fortifications along the river, which would reduce the number of troops to man this line, and would represent a direct force. This would free up a sizeable reserve force or indirect force to go on the offensive, taking advantage of the Army of the Potomac's compromised position of being split in two by the North Anna River.[60] This attack would have taken advantage of the Army of the Potomac having to reinforce either flank by having to cross the North Anna River twice in order to do so. However, Lee was too ill on that particular day to take command of the operation personally and his corps commanders neglected to take full advantage of the situation to its fullest extent.[61]

The last principle that will be examined is, "Character-based leadership: leading by example,"[62] and will focus on both Grant and Lee as the respective army commander's. This principle is broken down into six categories that will be applied to Union and Confederate commanders, which include, "character, lead by example, share soldier's trials, morale and motivation, delegation of authority, and providing clear direction."[63] For Grant, during the Overland Campaign, he was essentially triple hated, where he acted as commander-in-chief, theater commander and army commander.[64] By moving with the Army of the Potomac, it appears that he did not place much faith in this army's leadership in keeping the Army of Northern Virginia under constant pressure. Grant took the aspect of leading by example very seriously, since he took to the field with the Army of the Potomac, however, he was regarded as a "butcher" due to the large amounts of casualties n having his troops attack prepared positions. On the other hand, Grant did share in his soldier's trials by moving with the troops in the field and by not just giving direction from an office in Washington. This particular action resulted in respect from his subordinate commanders within the Army of the Potomac. Throughout the Overland Campaign, not too much can be said of Grant's morale and motivation ability except that once the campaign began and that first flanking maneuver was executed after the Battle of the Wilderness, the entire Army of the Potomac realized there was no turning back. However, the only aspect that Grant appears to have partially neglected is delegation of authority, where upon his arrival to the Army of the Potomac, he would essentially take personal control.[65] In contrast, he let Sherman execute his own campaign as he saw fit.[66] In the last category, Grant did provide clear direction at the onset of the campaign by making it known that his primary objective was the destruction of the Army of Northern Virginia and all moves and direction would be in support of this objective.

As for Lee, his character as the South's greatest general was beyond reproach. Throughout this campaign, Lee always sought input from his subordinates which made them more apt to be open to their commander, plus having an impact on how the army was to be employed.[67] By treating his subordinates in this way, it resulted in a more efficient organization and less enmity toward other commands.

Throughout Lee's tenure as the commander of the Army of Northern Virginia, he always remained in the field with his men even while operating in close proximity to Richmond, sharing the hardships that his soldiers would have to endure.[68] At this point in the war, the soldiers in the Army of Northern Virginia could not have been more proud of their commander, since he was able to defeat virtually every commander that was sent to fight him. Even though the rations and supplies were not at a desirable level, the men could rely on the fact that "Marse" Robert would win the day and they all would gladly die for their beloved leader.

In the aspect of delegating authority, Lee was excellent in letting his subordinates exercise their own initiative. However, due to the losses his command structure endured, the talent and initiative was just no longer there. Lee found himself more and more involved on a tactical level than ever before and it would take a toll on his health and ability to command the way he intended.[69] It would be through this difficulty that would not necessarily impact his ability to provide clear direction to his subordinates but from the fact that he had to take a more proactive role in ensuring his intentions were being carried out.

Now that we have seen how both Grant and Lee compared to Sun Tzu's sixth and final principle, the reader will hopefully have a better perception of how this particular campaign can be analyzed by utilizing Sun Tzu's concepts. By applying those concepts, one should see that Sun Tzu's concepts relate on a broader scope of operations, such as on the strategic and operational levels of warfare, however, during this campaign study, it can also be applied to some tactical situations yielding some superb insight. Taken as a whole, the reader should now have a better understanding of how these two schools of thought are not exactly as far apart as one might think.

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Show Footnotes and Bibliography

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Copyright © 2008 Richard Podruchny.

Written by Richard Podruchny. If you have questions or comments on this article, please contact Richard Podruchny at:

About the author:
Richard Podruchny is currently an active duty member of the USAF for the last 14 years. Over those 14 years, I have been stationed or deployed in the United Kingdom, Turkey, South Korea, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Texas, Virginia, and Alaska. As of lately, I'm an instructor for our Combat Targeting Course where we teach our students, both officer and enlisted, the doctrine and methods through which the Air Forces wields Air Power. I have been married for the last 10 years and my wife and I have two beautiful children, an 8 year old daughter and a 5 year old son.

Published online: 03/30/2007.
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