The Leavenworth Way of War

History Discussion at CGSC

Mercenaries –Back to the Future?

The inability of the feudal system to provide reliable armies gave rise to cadres of mercenaries that at first supplemented the aristocratic warriors of the feudal army, and then replaced them. By the Renaissance period, armies were largely made up of hired mercenary companies.  Aristocrats, once the knights of the feudal army, became the owners and officers of the  companies.   Mercenary companies were a key element of warfare throughout the 16th and 17th Centuries.  Many consider that they reached their greatest influence during the Thirty Years War, 1618-1648.  Toward the end of the war they began to decline in importance and by the end of the 17th Century they had largely been replaced by national professional armies.

Why did mercenary companies exist in the first place?  What advantage did they initially bring to the battlefield?

How were mercenary specialists of the Renaissance different from the contract specialists that we used today?

What are the advantages and disadvantages of mercenaries….then and now?  Is there an over-reliance on mercenaries today, or are they indespensible for many security tasks that the military simply doesn’t have manpower to accomplish?  Are logistics contractors on the battlefield mercenaries?

For a Free .pdf book on Renaissance Armies click here.

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August 27, 2014 Posted by | H100 | , , , , , , | 9 Comments

H100 –Viva la Revolucion!

poster_cheguevara_bigAuthors Knox and Murray, in the textbook, The Dynamics of Military Revolution, analyze the major historical changes in the nature of warfare in the modern period.  They call these Military Revolutions (MR).  A subset of those revolutions are smaller specific changes in the methods of warfare, they consider these smaller scale more focused changes Revolutions in Military Affairs (RMA).  The major military debate coming in the next years is how to structure the American military for the 21st Century.  In that debate it is important to determine if warfare currently is in the midst or has undergone an MR based on emerging and existing digital information technologies.    Do you think the US Army leadership believes that an MR has occurred or is occurring?  What is the evidence of that?  Regardless of what you believe the US Army leadership thinks regarding MRs, what is your opinion?  

August 27, 2014 Posted by | H100 | , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Some Useful Thoughts on Writing

August 27, 2014 Posted by | Admin, H100, H300 | , , , , , | 1 Comment

CAC Blog Rules

Use these rules as a guide when posting.

August 27, 2014 Posted by | Admin | 2 Comments

History at CGSC: History and Thinking

 

The below article describes how history and critical thinking aids problem solveing in today’s environment.  This goes to heart of why we teach history here at CGSC.

Historical Ignorance and Economy

August 27, 2014 Posted by | H100 | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Welcome CGSC 2015!

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Just a short a note to welcome the new CGSC class 2015, Staff Section 7, to the blog.  As I have said in class, the purpose of this blog is to continue the discussion of the class room topics in another venue.

I will be posting a class specific blog entry for each class .  Anyone in the class, actually anyone –other CGSC students as well anyone from the public, military or civilian,  not affiliated with CGSC –can comment on what I post.

I do not plan to edit in any way the comments on the posts.  However, in the extremely rare case where someone might spam or flame the comments sections, or post anything I deem inappropriate,  I will edit those out.  The blog guidelines posted on this page should be considered before posting.

If you have something to say relevant to the class that you want to express that does not go directly to the lead in blog, feel free to add that in the comments section as well.  In other words, the topics are not limited to the subjects I suggest, but are limited only limited by what is relevant to our history class and your CGSC experience.

A recommendation:  be aware of your writing style and grammar in your comments.  Like any public writing, including email, people will judge you by how you write as well as what you write.  I won’t be concerned about your style –but it is just natural that others will.  Do what I do –write your blog comments in word –spell check and proof read them –and then post them.  Its not a big deal, but it is an opportunity to practice good communications habits.

That said, ignore all of my style and grammar errors and focus on my content 😉

Again, welcome to the blog for AY 15 and have fun!

August 27, 2014 Posted by | Admin, military history | , , , , , , | Leave a comment