How Do Military Hilitorians Explain War?

2430 WordsJun 17, 201810 Pages
How do military historians explain war? To answer a question like this, one must look to the scholarship. However, works alone cannot explain the total scope of war, which means that historians take from the scholarship, and input what they deem necessary to the explanation of war. The Western experiences of war shaped the outcome of further study into warfare. Authors like Victor Davis Hanson, John Lynn, John Keegan, Martin van Creveld, and Niall Ferguson explain in detail to what extent the Western way of war is superior to any other. The goal in studying the Western way of war revolves around the concept of superiority in warfare. The comparison and distinction of Victor Davis Hanson, Carnage and Culture (2001), and John A.…show more content…
He addressed the issues of the culture of war, but he could have made a simpler case for cultural influence without references to Clausewitz. The study into von Clausewitz marks a turning point in the study of warfare. Clausewitz is the earliest of known writers of Western warfare. In terms of historical background, Clausewitz does not go as far back as the Greco-Roman period, but he influenced the way military leaders and historians interpreted war. He humbly devoted his life to being a scholar of military theory. Clausewitz made military theory and the scientific analysis of warfare possible, and the discerning of valid principles of war that bound military commanders: “The great difficulty of constructing a scientific theory for the conduct of war, and the many very poor attempts which have thus far been made to do so, have led most people to say that the task is impossible, since it concerns matters which cannot be defined by fixed rules. We would agree with this opinion, and give up all theoretical endeavors, were it not for the multitude of propositions that can be demonstrated easily and conclusively.” Clausewitzian theory came close to achievement in understanding the dominance of the West. Clausewitz stands-out from the other authors mentioned in this essay because of his experiences in combat. Other authors state, because of his experience during the Napoleonic wars, he gained the necessary first-hand knowledge of

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