Jeremy Black, "Logistics: The Key to Victory" (Pen and Sword, 2021)


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All commanders know that an army (or navy) cannot operate without supplies, yet most aspects of war studies emphasize strategy, tactics, weaponry, and command. Master historian Jeremy Black fills a gap in war studies with his book, Logistics: The Key to Victory (Naval Institute Press, 2021) as a huge subject at the center of all conflict, globally and historically.

The focus is on key conflicts, developments, and concepts--illustrating the vital role of logistics with technologies changing but underlying issues remaining constant. Here is a world history of logistics--a veritable compendium--but within a detailed and comprehensive but concise text. Factors affecting logistics include, for example, climate, geography, food supplies, welfare of troops, payment, transport, communications, terrain and distance, but also government policy, stability, and financial conditions. All are considered, including theoretical and practical factors of supply, from classical, ancient, early and medieval times, to modern eras of industrial warfare, especially with oil and steam, and scientific and technical advances-- even cyber warfare and smart weapons.

Charles Coutinho Ph. D. of the Royal Historical Society, received his doctorate from New York University. His area of specialization is 19th and 20th-century European, American diplomatic and political history. He has written for Chatham House’s International Affairs, the Institute of Historical Research's Reviews in History and the University of Rouen's online periodical Cercles.

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