A SCIENTIFIC APPROACH TO WAR? ANTOINE-HENRI JOMINI (GREAT STRATEGISTS)

In this episode in our Great Strategists series, U.S. Army War College historians Bill Johnsen and Con Crane present one of the more enigmatic figures in military theory, Baron Antoine-Henri Jomini. Historians have given Jomini mixed reviews in terms of evaluating his theories and contributions, but almost all recognize his influence.

Modern analysts often pit Jomini and his contemporary, Carl von Clausewitz, as polar opposites, creating “Jominian” and “Clausewitzian” camps. In reality, both were informed by their experiences with the Napoleonic Wars, but they took different perspectives–Clausewitz from the Prussian perspective, Jomini from the French. And while Clausewitz died in 1831, Jomini lived to be an old man and prolific writer, so you can see elements of Clausewitzian thought in Jomini’s writing. Still, Jomini was interested in finding general principles of warfare that could translate directly to success on the battlefield; a task that seemed simple when he could draw from observations of Napoleon’s greatest victories.

TRANSCRIPT: https://warroom.armywarcollege.edu/wp-content/uploads/19-117-A-SCIENTIFIC-APPROACH-TO-WAR-ANTOINE-HENRI-JOMINI-GREAT-STRATEGISTS.pdf

SUN TZU AND THE ART OF WAR — GREAT STRATEGISTS (EPISODE 2)

In “Sun Tzu and the Art of War,” Paul Kan explains the impacts of Sun Tzu’s famed treatise on war. Although little is known about Sun Tzu, The Art of War has been applied to many contemporary contexts from sports to relationships. Military educators often align this book with unconventional war in contrast to the supposed conventional war teachings of Carl von Clausewitz. The podcasts explore the impacts of the book and compare it to those of other Chinese philosophies of the time.