The Art of War
 

Many Christians are toy soldiers. They playact like they are fierce warriors, but the day of war reveals how much of a warrior they really are. Oftentimes they are not as tough as they seem or as smart as they seem or as revelatory as they seem. The day of war is a day of revelation of who is a toy soldier and who is a battle-hardened veteran who knows the art of war and everything in-between.
    If you are not combat credible, unhealthy people will not be deterred or discouraged from attacking you. If you are not combat credible, demons will not be deterred from attacking you. If you are not combat credible, the environment will shape you instead of you shaping the environment. The good news is, you do not have to be a toy soldier, or an expendable footsoldier, or an amateur. But to go from toy soldier to battle-hardened veteran who wins consistently, you must learn the art of war...warcraft...military doctrine...war-making and war-winning concepts.

This is precisely what the Word of God says to us.


Expert in War?
 

Song of Songs 3:7,8 describe King Solomon's praetorian guard with a remarkable descriptor: expert in war. Here is the full verse, notice the underlined. Song 3:7,8 (ESV): ...Around it are sixty mighty men, some of the mighty men of Israel, all of them wearing swords and expert in war...
    Oh to become an expert in war! David prayed for God to teach him the art of war, and God responded overwhelmingly. In Psalm 144:1 David tells us (ESV), Blessed be the L
ORD, my rock, who trains my hands for war, and my fingers for battle... And again in Psalm 18:34 David said (ESV): He trains my hands for war...
    We can develop expertise in the wars of life, but like David, we have to be taught the art of war--from the Lord and others. We have to be taught warcraft, military doctrine, war-making and war-winning concepts that are generalizable across all wars.


Three Foundational Concepts
 

Three foundational concepts underpin all warcraft. We maybe could add a few more to these, but these three are sufficient for now. 

Situational Uniqueness
    Every conflict has its own set of unique variables, and therefore, warfare techniques must be calibrated uniquely to each situation. How the Soviet Union fought Nazi Germany on the flat Eurasian steppes is not how they fought the mujahideen in Afghanistan in rocky terrain in weather that was hotter than hell itself. The Soviet red army defeated Nazi Germany's eastern force and pushed them all the way back to Berlin, but they left Afghanistan in disgrace after not appreciating the very different variables there.
    To kill the lion and the bear David used his bare hands (1Sam 17:34-36). To kill Goliath he used a slingshot. To kill many others he used a sword. Situational uniqueness means strategic uniqueness.

Individual Level
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very individual soldier has a different level of ability, preparation, and experience, and therefore, warfare techniques must be adjusted to each individual's level. The expendable footsoldiers who stormed the beaches of Normandy were fighting with a much different strategy than the special operators who were sneaking behind Nazi lines to gain crucial intel and study the beast from within.
    Before David mastered the sword God made him master the slingshot. Before he mastered the slingshot God made him master his own bare hands. Individual level means strategic adjustment.

Offense & Defense
    Psalm 18:34,35 (ESV, underline mine): He trains my hands for war, so that my arms can bend a bow of bronze. You have given me the shield of your salvation...
    Notice David mentions an offensive weapon (a bow) and a defensive weapon (a shield). Proactive weaponry (a bow) and reactive weaponry (a shield). An unstoppable force and an immovable object. In the artistry of war you need both. You need proactive strategies for moving in, penetrating, and possessing, but also reactive strategies for blocking and preventing and resisting. You cannot win by being good at only one.
    As long as Nazi Germany was on offense, doing their blitzkrieg lightning war, they were unstoppable. But when Operation Barbarossa got bogged down at Stalingrad and thirty miles outside Moscow, World War II changed permanently. When the Allies counterattacked and invaded continental Europe, Nazi Germany could not defend what they had conquered. In the artistry of war you must be an unstoppable force offensively and an immovable object defensively.

Three foundational concepts underpin all warcraft: situational uniqueness, individual level, and an offense-defense system. 


War-Making & War-Winning Concepts
 

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Initial Period of War
Russia and China believe the "initial period of war" likely determines the outcome, and therefore, heavily emphasize preparatory, preemptive, and rapid actions to create an immediate advantage in the combat theater

ETA Exploiting Temporal Advantage (Exploiting Time-Related Advantage)
Windows of advantage. They manipulate time, either by moving slowly (incrementalism) and with plausible deniability to avoid provoking a response (island-building in the South China Sea 2013), or, moving extremely quickly where policies are unclear or potential responses will be too slow or insignificant (Russia's seizure of Crimea 2014)

incrementalism: can shi "to nibble away, nibbling like a silkworm" refers to a strategy by which the Chinese government is said to use small provocations, none of which would constitute a casus belli by itself, but cumulatively produce a much larger action or result in China's favor which would have been difficult or unlawful to perform all at once.
recent years, satellite imagery has shown China’s increased efforts to reclaim land in the South China Sea by physically increasing the size of islands or creating new islands altogether. In addition to piling sand onto existing reefs, China has constructed ports, military installations, and airstrips—particularly in the Paracel and Spratly Islands, where it has twenty and seven outposts, respectively. China has militarized Woody Island by deploying fighter jets, cruise missiles, and a radar system.

Cabbage tactics is a militarily swarming and overwhelming tactic used by the Chinese Navy to seize control of islands. It is a tactic to overwhelm and seize control of an island by surrounding and wrapping the island in successive layers of Chinese naval ships, China Coast Guard ships, and fishing boats and cut off the island from outside support. The goal of cabbage tactics is to create a layered envelopment of the target.

Military Circuit Training
Russia beginning 2009. exercising different muscle groups on a rotating basis to strengthen the entire organism for the main event. Russia's large-scale military training exercises are oriented to multidimensional, theater-driven conflict. Russia divides its military into five districts, and they keep rotating which district has to do the large-scale military training exercises. Kind of like a circuit training workout exercising different muscles at different times so the entire body can be multidimensionally strong and fit.

Deterrence

Sustained Operations

Precision-Strike Technology
proliferation of over the last two decades

A2/AD (Anti-Access/Area Denial)
"angry red bubbles"

CTAM (Contested Theater Access & Maneuverability)
CTAM says you cannot always deny access to an enemy, so you have to limit or handicap their maneuverability within the combat theater


 

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