Regarding politicians and their connections with the military, Clausewitz believed that war was the expression of politics by simply using another form, therefore politicians are engaging in warfare using their particular instruments, utilizing legislative means, for example, in the United States, through the acts of Congress. He believed that war is the ultimate tool of diplomacy (Osgood, 2000.) He was also aware that certain aspects of warfare could have an impact on policy by eroding support for the opposition through a strong, unrelenting force. Jomini, on the other hand, believed that the supreme war strategy was victory through fighting and complete devastation of the enemy forces, so that his was not a method that would have been supportive of politicians making military determinations regarding strategy. Undoubtedly, both strategists believed strongly that the nature of the attack would have a significant impact on a victorious result: Jomini emphasized the professionalization of war that was highly organized and coherent, (Ebner, 2011), conducting strong attacks that resulted in rapid victories while Clausewitz was more focused on the science of war, believing that victory would be accomplished when leaders were thoroughly educated about the theoretical study of war (Osgood, 2000.)
The second post discusses the issues of science versus art, and how or whether Jomini and Clausewitz viewed the concept of war as relating to either one. Clausewitz clearly does not believe that war belongs in either category, and in fact, relating to the first question, he believes that war belongs in a distinct category, that of social existence which would include areas including politics, business, and human relationships. However, Jomini believes that war is an art. Certain factors such as the charisma of the general and the morale of troops demonstrate that war is not a concrete science, but rather related to human truths that are essential for the conduct of war. However, Jomini does acknowledge that certain strategies of waging war would be considered to be science.
My reading of this post implies that Clausewitz was much more focused on the tools, strategies, and power exerted by one state over another in order to prevail, while Jomini was more focused on the leadership element of the battles, the need for the person in charge of troops to cover all bases and consider all possibilities in leading soldiers into battle; he was, after all, intent on concentrating on the might and power of his forces on the enemies’ weaknesses in order to prevail. Despite all these preparations, however, there is an element of destiny that will come into play that will contribute to the outcome of any conflict, no matter how prepared a leader may be.
This selection could not be more relevant to the war in Afghanistan, especially as exhibited over the last few days. It has been said over and over that there cannot be a military solution to this conflict, but rather, there must be a diplomatic solution: if the tribal leaders of the region, and the people that live there, cannot be won over, there can be no victory. The Clausewitz “fog of war” is also a prominent feature of this conflict, as the leaders are not in control of the situation but rather, are at the mercy of the enemies who are hiding everywhere but are successful at killing our troops. Although it has often been said that this conflict cannot be won without winning over the “hearts and minds” of the locals, it appears that this message has not been fully integrated because the war, drone attacks, hand to hand combat continue with only an increase in casualties on all sides.