Post World War II Army Doctrine

Discussion in 'Military History and Militaria' started by IndianaDel, Apr 12, 2006.

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  1. Does anyone have any information, books or what ever, on the evolution of British Army Doctrine Post World War Two.
    What I am most vexed about is the change from the precise format of tactical / operational orders that can be argued to have made British operations in WWII so "sluggish", which seems contrary to later practice.

    There seems to have been a rapid and sweeping change in Army Doctrine, to the adaptive mode of current times, where the "mission not the mode" are emphasised.

    This one has my nose itching badly and I KNOW there is some one here who can help me out!
    Err Pretty Please!
     
  2. I would have thought the British Army's Doctrine directorate would be better able to help. Their occasional papers may include somehting on the subject.

    There was a conference about 2000 ish at Larkhill called "the development of contemorary Army Doctrine". Richard Holmes spoke about the development of British Army doctrine comparing the different approaches taken by the different bits of the army churning out manuals. His paper might be a good starting point. Its probably appearted in a different form somehwere else.
     
  3. Have read a little about WW2 doctrine and its amazing to find how different it is today. Yep when did we learn our lessons (did we just take the best bits from US and German doctrine?)
     
  4. There is a school of thought that would argue that we didn't really have any doctrine until 1989 or thereabouts...
     
  5. "Doctrine" has been a recent addition to British military art. We always had an overarching concept of operations but even tactics could vary from formation to formation. I think it was Montgomery who revealed in his biography that new COs would ask "how does the general like the attack done" when joining a new brigade.

    As DD so rightly notes, "British Military doctrine" was not published and disseminated to/instructed to officers until 1989. Various arms of the service had doctrinal strands, some (e.g. the RA) more developed and better understood than others (e.g. the Infantry).
     
  6. Interesting article in the latest issue of BAR available on Armynet, in which Sydney Jary says that at the end of the war, the army didn’t bother writing down anything they’d learned. Instead the peacetime soldiers came back and changed back to the much more complicated ways of doing things of the 1930s.

    His contention was that nothing really changed until 1982 when Goose Green and such like showed the need for a different way of doing things.

    I know this probably refers to tactics rather than doctrine but they’re all way above my pay grade!
     
  7. I think two pamphlets might be significant to this question: the first edition of "British Military Doctrine", and ADP2 "Command".