Monday, March 21, 2011

Four levels of warfare

The four levels of warfare:

Political goals exist as the grand strategy that co-ordinate and direct resources towards the attainment of the political object of the war – the goal defined by fundamental policy.

Strategy is a level of decision-making in charge of setting and reaching the end goal. It is a plan of action designed to achieve a particular goal and it is concerned with how engagements are linked.

The operational level is the level of decision making in charge of taking specific actions needed to fulfil strategic goals. These actions are designed as the plan to resolve a situation; the operational objectives.

The tactical level is the level of implementing planned operations. How a battle is fought. Tactis are the techniques used for engaging and defeating the enemy.

"Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat."
-Sun Tzu, The Art of War

"Parallel to and reflecting this framework for operations are organized elements within the armed forces which prepare for and conduct operations at various levels of war. While there is a general correlation between the size of units, the area within which they operate, and the scope of mission they perform, the correlation is not absolute. In fact, it is ultimately the mission that a unit performs that determines the level of war within which it operates."
—Soviet Military Operational Art