Culture and the Military
Cultural Aspects in Military Consideration is essential to victory. In Military Geography, we describe, categorize, and quantify cultural aspects in many ways with the same result. Considering the Geographical factors, we look at Ethnicities, population patterns, Social Structure, Language and beliefs, Industries, methods of transportation, Communication, and of course, Military installations.
To describe Cultural Factors associated with Geographical military history, attention is paid to census statistics, including population sizes, age groups, gender, and geographical distribution. We differ between rural and urban to quickly determine a possible social distribution between cities and countryside.
Language and Religion
Language and religion play an essential role in military-strategic operations to develop offensive operations or avoid possible internal conflict. For instance, “Relations among racial, ethnic, tribal, and religious groups merit special attention because alienation often leads to armed conflict. Immense psychological significance attends some cultural icons, such as shrines, national cemeteries, other hallowed ground, even entire cities”.
One of the essential Cultural Factors of military Geography is Transportation Networks. To effectively plan a military operation, a commander first defines the capabilities of a country’s Transportation Networks to move troops and supplies swiftly. For instance, Transportation networks facilitate an army commander’s ability to deploy internationally, regionally, or locally.
Furthermore, “Roads, railways, inland waterways, airfields, and seaports, conveniently located in proper combinations, enable formations of requisite size and type to reach objective areas promptly from distant staging bases, then maneuver effectively.” In Addition, Airports offer the ability to reduce the time in which a mission is complete and reduce cost in terms of transportation.
The physical relationship of military geography determines how urban areas and demographical distributions are determined. Communication systems additionally play a vital role in the beneficial aspects of military planning. With many different types of communication systems to effectively use in military situations, such as; Radios, Telephones, and now most importantly, “Space communication Satellites.”
Drawing from Collins’ text, discuss what you deem to be the most distinctly military aspects of the physical environment. Explain how these aspects of physical geography work together to influence military operations on land, sea, and air. Expand upon which type of modality is most appealing to you. Once again, I am examining your familiarity with Collins’ text and seeking your perspective on the physical environment as a critical piece of Military Geography.
“Spatial relationships, arguably the most fundamental of all geographic factors, concern the location, size, and shape of land areas, together with the presence and configuration of intervening waters.” With that being said, we can determine that the physical shape of the land is the most distinct aspect of geographical warfare. The harsh desert of the Middle East determines the number of supplies required. In Addition, the high mountain of Pakistan makes an ideal hiding spot for Terrorists. Nevertheless, the lakes and swamps are also significant to the military aspect of the physical environment in military strategy.
In strategic warfare, land, naval, and Air forces must invade a region effectively. “Each service as it stands is superior in some environments and inferior in others.” However, I think that is the most important in any warfare environment. Although Naval and Air forces are needed to transport troops, troops finish up the job by engaging strategic points at any given time. Air forces can attack strategic issues; however, Air forces are vulnerable to anti Air attacks and have limited reach on the ground. In other words, without Land troops, no victory is achievable.
Land forces can fight in any possible environment, whereas, Air and Naval have more strategic use. A commander would rely on his Navy and Air force to attack strategic areas and then send in the invasion force to finish up the job, proving the role of the land troops as the backbone of the army.
Lines of Communications are significant to military planning. The Roman Empire is an excellent example of the importance of a communication sequence. For instance, how were the Romans sending an order from Rome to Antioch? They emphasize the importance of roads, bridges, and the sea. In Addition, a messenger could travel at least 20 miles on horseback by day and then pass the messenger to another messenger who would keep going.
Furthermore, WWII also counts as another excellent example of the importance of lines of communication. For instance, in WWII, the Allies were able to decipher some of the secret codes used by the Axis power, resulting in the salvation of many lives. Furthermore, Canals are essential lines of communication since we can travel from West to East in less than half the time thanks to the Panama Canal.
Nonetheless, to be prepared for warfare, one needs to make sure that orders will be sent quickly and accurately. For instance, the United States has the most Airports, Roads, Seaports and Harbors, Military bases, and Satellites of any country in the world. Therefore, when an American commander develops a military strategy, he can quickly deploy troops from anywhere in the world and easily communicate with the respective lieutenants.
Topographical and Soil Considerations
Topography and soil consideration is crucial when developing a military tactic. Before creating an effective military, vegetation and topography should be considered to create a military tactic. Vegetation plays an essential role in the military land offensive. And when soil considerations and topography coincide, you will be presented by a mountains forest such as the Brazilian Amazon.
In Addition, the Vietnam War represents another excellent example in which the soil helped the Vietnamese effectively defend their ground. However, had Vietnam been a desert, the United States had quickly developed an effective strategy to outrun the entire Vietnamese army.
In Addition, Lagoons also play an essential role in developing a military tactic. Land topography, hydrography, and vegetation are fundamental aspects to consider when planning military operations. However, land topography is the most critical factor.
Land topography is a graphic representation of the surface features of a place or region on a map, indicating their relative position and elevations. Nowadays, most military conflicts are fought in the air on and on land, and understanding the make-up of the will help us make some crucial decisions. Decisions include placement of troops, troop transportation, lines of communications for supply, and Satellite coverage for GPS navigation.
Cultural Aspects in Air, Sea, and Land Warfare
Cultural aspects are equally crucial to air, sea, and land warfare. In strategic action, cultural aspects affect lines of communications and effective combat. To effectively defeat an enemy, there should be a clear understanding of why the enemy is fighting and how to approach a determined enemy; by land, sea, or land, respectively.
Middle Eastern conflicts can be used as an example of cultural misinterpretation, whereas the United States is perceived as an oppressor. Nevertheless, inland warfare cultural aspects affect the way we use ally troops; in sea warfare, we determine where to strike the enemy by strategically focusing their weak points, and in sea warfare.
Individual Logistical Area Analysis
A Logistical Area Analysis of where I live and work; I live in New York City in an urban area. There is a Firehouse nearby, and just two blocks away, a large Hospital. In Addition, there are also five gas stations in a six blocks radius—furthermore, several supermarkets, four different accessible public buses, and four different NYC trains. Where I work, it’s a similar area. There are three freeways nearby. Nevertheless, the situation remains similar. Several mountains and a small river make it accessible to troops and water supply through the running river stream.
The Greeks, primarily due to their Geographical position, were able to defeat the Persians. The Battle of Thermopylae is an excellent example of the Geographical advance that the Greeks possessed over the Persians. The harsh Greek terrains made it ideal for the Greek Phalanx and unsuitable for the massive Invading Persian force. In Addition, I will study the numerous naval battles and their Geographical importance there. I am facing many difficulties in this particular paper. Unlike other history courses where I focus on warfare, I have to focus on the Geographical aspect of the conflict.