Cavalry in War and Peace

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U.S. cavalry association, 1910 - Cavalry - 368 pages
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Page xi - dash of Cavalry" of which Sir John was thinking. There is ample evidence to document the point. If cold steel were thown away as "useless lumber," he wrote, ". . . we should invert the role of cavalry, turn it into a defensive arm, and make it a prey to the first foreign cavalry that it meets, for good cavalry can always compel a dismounted force of mounted riflemen to mount and ride away, and when such riflemen are caught on their horses, they have power neither of offence nor of defence and are...
Page vi - It is not only possible but necessary," he says, " to preach the Army spirit, or, in other words, the close comradeship of all arms in battle, and at the same time to develop the highest qualities and the special attributes of each branch. The particular spirit which we seek to encourage is different for each arm. Were we to seek to endow cavalry with the tenacity and stiffness of infantry, or to take from the mounted arm the mobility and the cult of the offensive which are the breath of its life,...
Page xvii - This, he said, was a job for cold steel. Only when the enemy cavalry was out of action did he think that the cavalry would rely more on the rifle than on steel — which is not to say that he ruled "out as impossible, or even unlikely, attacks by great bodies of mounted men against other arms on the battlefield.
Page viii - ... had thus avoided Sandhurst and the mental training this would have involved. For Sir John the experience of the Boer War was disturbing only because a number of his colleagues had been disturbed by it. As he thought over this experience, his final assessment as of the very eve of World War I was that "It passes comprehension that some critics in England should gravely assure us that the war in South Africa should be our chief source of inspiration and guidance, and that it was not normal."6 The...
Page 95 - ... either as an independent operation or raid, or in its strategic relation to the campaign. But all the advantage gained by it was neutralized by the indiscretion of a corps commander and was obscured by the great disaster to our arms for which it was in no way responsible. General Bernhardi wrote : I hold therefore that such circumstances render a disturbance of the rear communications of an army an important matter.
Page xvi - In our training during the last few years I have endeavoured to impress upon all ranks that when the enemy's Cavalry is overthrown, our cavalry will find more opportunities of using the rifle than the cold steel, and that dismounted attacks will be more frequent than charges with the cattee blanche.
Page 301 - ... and on his flanks and nearly surrounded — struck and defeated the columns in succession before they united. Stuart's great credit is the manner in which he screened the movements of Lee and got information of the enemy. Referring to this operation in his work on Cavalry, General Bernhardi said : The American War of Secession showed in a surprising manner what could be done in this respect. Stuart's screening of the left wheel of the Confederate army, after the battle of Chancellorsville, for...
Page 111 - ... conflict with our larger social and economic interests ? All this, in other words, involves a great deal more * General von Bernhardi, in his work on cavalry, deals with this very question of the bad influence on tactics of the " pomp of war," which he admits must disappear, adding very wisely : " The spirit of tradition consists not in the retention of antiquated forms, but in acting in that spirit which in the past led to such glorious success...
Page xiv - My opinion upon this point is that every plan should be subordinate to what I consider a primary necessity— namely, the absolute and complete overthrow of the hostile cavalry. So long as that cavalry remains intact with its moral unshaken, all our enterprises must of necessity be paralysed.
Page xi - Even in South Africa, grave though were the disadvantages under which our cavalry laboured from short commons and overwork, the Boer mounted riflemen acknowledged on many occasions the moral force of the cold steel, and gave way before it.

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