Defenders can move from one part of the city to another undetected using underground tunnels and spring ambushes. An example from the American forces also illustrates this curiously hidebound attitude. Domitius Sabinus, who in this engagement, as in others, showed himself a brave man, aiding his exertions. 27 Rupert Smith, The Utility Of Force: The Art of War in the Modern World (London: Allen Lane, 2005). First, he argued, commanders lose control of the battle more rapidly in urban environments than they do in others — it is, according to Beevor, intrinsically more difficult terrain on which to fight than any other. To focus only on their disadvantages is ceding the psychological high ground before the first shot has been fired. In choosing the examples noted above, we focused only on cases that took place prior to World War I and are well-documented. 20 Hills, Future War in Cities, 229 and chap. Commanders at all levels must see the urban battlefield as a series of disparate and lightly connected nodes of activity.102 The apogee of this approach would be for small groups of soldiers, whose activities are lightly coordinated and de-conflicted, to exert pressure upon the adversary in multiple places at the same time. The Future of Urban Warfare Margarita Konaev 11 militaries into urban areas.6 Another important aspect of urban warfare, both ancient and modern, is the significant amount of manpower, resources, and time it demands, as well as the high costs it exudes. The northern approach included the classic invasion routes, which the Yugoslav military would be well prepared to defend. 89 Urbanisation Seminar Game, NATO Defence College, Rome, Sept. 28–Oct. The special forces and intelligence agencies sometimes actively seek out such recruits for specialist work, notably surveillance. So, past you require the book swiftly, you can straight get it. If this represents a change, then it is one of degree not of fundamentals and is manageable with the right mindset — one that is sensitive to both opportunities and threats — and with bold and creative leadership. In the final battles on the streets of Buenos Aires, de Liniers achieved the operational and tactical feat of deploying the most primitive arms alongside what were then cutting-edge ones. 48 Huchthausen, America’s Splendid Little Wars, 62. 66 See, Anatol Lieven, Chechnya: Tombstone of Russian Power (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1998), esp. Senior commanders are uncomfortable with what could be seen as abandoning the individual soldier to a fight that pits him against his adversary. The better trained and better equipped soldier should be comfortable in the chaos of the city — or at any rate as comfortable as he or she would be in any other environment. Speaking of tactics, Urban Warfare introduces some interesting new gadgets that add some welcome layers to that aspect of the game. 7, 2017. British doctrine describes the near future of war alliteratively as congested, cluttered, connected, contested, and constrained.6 Likewise, the notable strategic thinker David Kilcullen goes for three related Cs: crowded, complex, and coastal.7. It is the attitude of mind that determines whether you go under or survive. Consider, for instance, that NASA and the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration have recently initiated the Urban Air Mobility Grand Challenges, modeled partly on the DARPA Grand Challenges that began experimenting with autonomous ground vehicles more than a decade ago. For the Marine Corps, the Beirut attack was a major blow — the worst loss of life in a single day it had suffered since the Battle of Iwo Jima in 1945. Consider first the following scene from Flavius Josephus’ The Jewish War, which recounts a critical battle in the siege of Jerusalem by Roman legions under the command of Titus, son of the emperor Vespasian, in the year 70 AD: Threatening death to any of the populace who would breathe a word about surrender, and butchering all who even spoke casually about peace, they attacked the Romans who had entered. Their fury, however, was largely assuaged by the initially agreeable results: A superior Spanish military force was quickly routed at the cost of a handful of British casualties and Buenos Aires was occupied. 4) Mouse-holes and New Clearing Challenges: Enemy defensive measures will make the urban terrain even more complex. The advantages afforded to the better trained, equipped, supported, and mentally prepared soldier are magnified by this environment, which rewards tactical skill. (Image courtesy of the authors). The truth of the matter is that this perfectly sensible tactical advice to the urban guerrilla is just as pertinent now to the regular Western soldier. Moreover, the tactics of the Jewish rebels differed little from those of, say, Islamic State insurgents in the months-long battle for Mosul in Iraq. 42 Jim Storr, The Human Face of War (London: Continuum Press, 2009). This, essentially, is the essence of the aforementioned “strategic corporal” effect. Peniakoff would have asked for the same thing, as would have Wellington, or Marlborough, or any of the great captains of history all the way back to Alexander the Great. First, in October 1944, two battalions of the American 26th Infantry Division (with armor and engineering attachments) soundly defeated a much larger entrenched German force of 5,000 troops in nine days of fighting in the city of Aachen.58 Seventy-five Americans were killed and the German force that had been ordered by Hitler to fight to the last man was essentially wiped out. Britain has a degree of access to CENZUB in accordance with the 2010 Lancaster House Treaty on defense and security cooperation between the two countries, which could offset the relatively low quality of its own facilities. And yet, although conflict in cities is more prevalent now than in the past on account of demographic trends and urbanization, the supposedly challenging nature of urban warfare — as opposed to warfare in other “simpler” environments — is contradicted by many historical and contemporary examples. 69 John Spencer, “The Army Needs an Urban Warfare School and It Needs It Soon,” Modern War Institute, April 5, 2017, https://mwi.usma.edu/army-needs-urban-warfare-school-needs-soon/. I offer the following suggestions on close combat and urban tactics, and will phase them, in the sequence of a hypothetical enemy army approaching, breaching and than entering the city. What is needed is a substantial shift in thinking from extant, industrial-era, positive-control oriented approaches, to one in which the regular force is simply the strongest gang in a given area. This is to say nothing of the political complexity of the conflict, which was substantial and wide-ranging. Groningen and Aachen — and even Berlin, Stalingrad, Hiroshima, and Carthage for that matter — were all back in business soon after being blasted to smithereens in warfighting that verged on the exterminatory. Yet, security was inadequate by design, though not the local commander’s. As a testament to the authenticity of Baladia, while one of us was writing up notes in a Tel Aviv bar after a visit to the facility, the bartender, an Israeli Defense Force reservist, recognized the crude sketch of the facility seen below and remarked that he had spent many weeks in training there. Then, when I come back later with my men to carry out my evil schemes, I can let the plan take care of itself.41, In other words, while the presence of civilians in the city is indeed a factor that adds to the complexity of the operating environment, this is also the case in other environments, even ones that seem, at first glance, to be relatively uncluttered. This was largely based on the defeat dealt to Russian mechanized forces in late December 1994 and early January 1995 by Chechen secessionist fighters in Grozny. You have to favor to in this announce The Literature Network: This site is organized alphabetically by author. The six points above are only a few of the many new urban warfare challenges that will emerge in the event of a high-intensity conventional conflict. For this research, we interviewed a place-hacker in October 2017 who illustrated for us, with photos as an example, a typical hack of our own university — an adventure that encompassed crawling through generally unknown (and publicly inaccessible) service tunnels, climbing decorative surface features of structures, and traversing the rooftops of several central London landmarks over a space of three city blocks. British commanders, for instance, are encouraged to brainstorm down to the junior noncommissioned officer level, then run their units through an exercise. Loud cries arose from those within, who were surrounded by enemies on all sides, and from those without, in alarm for their comrades who had been left behind. However, when defense budgets are under pressure, savings are often found by cutting travel alongside other activities. Stationing his archers at the end of the streets and taking post himself where the enemy was in greatest force, he kept them at bay with missiles. It is no wonder, then, that when at all feasible the most politically desirable operation is one that involves no troops on the ground at all, no matter what the terrain. The main thrust of this effort is to alleviate a civilian problem, specifically the traffic jams that plague life and commerce in big cities, through the development of a new class of air vehicles that will bypass congestion by flying over it. 9 Geoffrey Till, Maritime Strategy and the Nuclear Age (London: Macmillan, 1982), 224. Each chapter focuses on t. More recently, Western involvement in wars in the Middle East, and to a lesser extent Ukraine, has primarily involved airpower alongside special forces and small advisory teams in support of local forces — a far more politically palatable approach. “The battle always goes to the quickest,” was how the famous German general, Erwin Rommel, once put it.78 Yet, whereas most Western armies have plenty of big spaces with varied natural terrain in which to experiment and practice how to do these things, the same is not true with regard to urban environments. See, John Spencer and John Amble, “A Better Approach to Urban Operations: Treat Cities Like Human Bodies,” Modern War Institute, Sept. 13, 2017, https://mwi.usma.edu/better-approach-urban-operations-treat-cities-like-human-bodies/. We excluded numerous cases of besieged cities in which capitulation occurred after the exterior defenses were breached, or where a defending commander surrendered when a breach looked inevitable — a typical occurrence in early-modern European fortress warfare.10 We also excluded cases where, although significant fighting continued on the streets after the outer defenses had failed, the historical accounts of said fighting were patchy and therefore there was little for us to say about it.11 Our two examples were chosen because they superbly illustrate the rapid political, economic, and diplomatic impacts of urban warfare. 79 It is perhaps instructive that a British infantry soldier under training spends more time on the drill square learning to march than learning the core skill of fighting in an urban environment. Cities are, moreover, not just politically significant but also economically significant as “base points” in a global web of production and markets, which conflict would disrupt.32 And yet, the idea that the impact of urban warfare is increasingly strong — whether by resonating powerfully in international politics, causing upheaval in global markets, or impacting the mood of distant populations — has been true for at least two centuries, possibly even two millennia. One of the main conclusions of important scholars like Hills is that, although tactics of urban warfare have changed little, the strategic context has evolved considerably as a result of globalization, demography, and urbanization. Fundamentally, the tactic’s main principle is to get as many guns into the room and in as little time as possible to rapidly overwhelm the opponents inside. In the third section, we show how a narrow view of the history of urban warfare, particularly one that is resolutely focused on the experience of one titanic and highly peculiar battle — Stalingrad — distorts perceptions of the problem at hand and its potential solutions. 97 Technical data and a video of the Balpro system may be seen on the company’s website: “Force Protection Balpro Protector – Fast Fortification System,” Kenno, http://www.kenno-shield.com/balpro/force-protection-balpro-products/. It is rather that training in the relevant methods requires the correct environment. Caen was a costly Allied victory, slow and nearly Pyrrhic, with a heavy toll of civilian casualties caused by high-level bombing and artillery barrages. Some potential solutions are already emerging in military engineering conferences and in the marketing brochures of firms selling defensive barriers and counter-mobility systems, the latter very often focused on changes to urban infrastructure for domestic counter-terrorism purposes.96 One of these firms, Kenno, a Finnish manufacturer of laser-welded, steel-sandwich components, has, with the Finnish army, developed what is essentially a surface-mounted, reusable, modular fortress that can be assembled without specialist tools by a small team in a few hours.97. 47 See, the chapter on Beirut and the Reagan era intervention in Lebanon in Peter Huchthausen, America’s Splendid Little Wars: A Short History of U.S. Military Engagements, 1975-2000 (London: Viking, 2003), 45–64. There is no doctrine for emplacing concrete barriers or for the consideration of logistic packages that include concrete walls. However, if the attacking force overwhelms the defending force’s ability to make decisions at the lowest level through speed, aggression, and simultaneous action in as many places as possible at the same time, then the defender will be unable to choose the tactics. See Diarmaid MacCulloch, Christianity: The First Three Thousand Years (London: Penguin, 2009), 111. The lessons of Iraq notwithstanding, Krulak is still fundamentally right that warfare is likely to be even more centered on urban environments in the future. Arguably, no army knows this as well as Israel’s. The bulk of this section is based on extended visits to a range of such facilities in several countries, as well as interviews with training staff to identify the central problems and best practices. 58 Christopher R. Gabel, “Knock ‘em All Down: The Reduction of Aachen, October 1944,” in, Block by Block: The Challenges of Urban Operations, ed. Aleppo. Good militaries increase in competence as they fight. Since the advent of the “War on Terror,” avoiding putting “boots on the ground” has been far more difficult from a tactical perspective, particularly after the invasion of Iraq in March and April 2003. Why not the city? Although most Russian bases, like American and British ones, usually include just a few buildings, occasionally ruins, in which small units practice urban combat drills, Russia is investing substantially in new facilities.75 At the Mulino base near Nizhny Novgorod, for instance, the new 333rd Combat Training Center operates a range of sophisticated training simulators and a “battle town,” which is said to be large enough to accommodate a full battalion on exercise.76 Additionally, the Chechen provincial government operates on behalf of the federal Russian army an impressively large and thoughtfully planned facility that is nearly 400 hectares in size and includes a range of building sizes. Western armies have a longstanding habit of seeking solutions to tactical and strategic problems in technology because this plays to the strengths of Western countries. There is a mock Afghan village in the Stanford Training Area in Norfolk, U.K., run by the Operational Training Advisory Group, which is an up-to-date and generally convincing portrayal of operating conditions in Helmand province. Sometimes, nature may destroy a city, but man, despite his best efforts, does not.105. Then the exercise is run again. 49 Quoted in, William Craig, Enemy at the Gates: The Battle for Stalingrad (London: Book Club Associates, 1973), 373. The soldier is taught to fear the threats of a fast tempo — isolation, outflanking, a reduction in the fire support that can be brought to bear — but not taught to embrace these things as opportunities that can work in his or her favor. See also Eyal Weizman, “Walking Through Walls: Soldiers as Architects in the Israeli/Palestinian Conflict,” Lecture at the Arxipelago of Exception conference, Centre de Cultura Contemporania de Barcelona, Nov. 11, 2005. This will save more lives but it may also mean that a much higher percentage of casualties will be wounded (WIA) as opposed to killed (KIA). Spencer was a company commander in the Sadr City battle and also served in Iraq in 2015–16 as an adviser on barrier systems. But history and the experience of recent urban operations show that soldiers and commanders — properly trained and equipped — can act judiciously and achieve the goals of their mission despite the odds seeming to be against them. It was to little avail, however, for two reasons. The damage to the city may be seen in this photo essay: “Marawi in Ruins After Battle Against Pro-ISIL Fighters,” Al Jazeera, Oct. 23, 2017, https://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/inpictures/2017/10/marawi-ruins-battle-pro-isil-fighters-171023071620271.html. Robert Traill (London: Houlston and Stoneman, 1851), 143. Michael Howard and Peter Parker (New York: Alfred Knopf, 1993), 99. The strength of its grasp on the military mind and the defense policy establishment, however, is not. 51 A point that Jim Storr argues holds true for the Allied armies in general in World War II. See, Winograd Commission: The Commission to Investigate the Events of the 2006 Lebanon Campaign, State of Israel, January 2008 [in Hebrew]. We would not seek to suggest that light forces can, or indeed should, be the sole answer to the problem. 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