Complexity in Coalition Operations : The Campaign of the Sixth Coalition Against Napoleon
The Campaign of the Sixth Coalition, from the Summer of 1813 until the abdication of Napoleon in April 1814, offers some important and valid insights into the successful execution of coalition warfare while serving to illustrate the complexities of coalition warfare. As the United States continues to rely on the use of coalitions as a major component of our National Strategy when committing military forces, it is incumbent on senior leaders to understand the complexities of coalition warfare. This campaign offers that opportunity. The major turning point in the Campaign occurred in the Summer of 1813 with the addition of Austria to the Allied Coalition. Many writers cite this campaign as an example of how to conduct coalition warfare. These works routinely focus on the aspects of unity of command, the coalition's strategic objective and the execution of that objective. While these aspects are important, the campaign also provides an example of the importance of a dominant partner in a coalition, capable of providing the military resources, as well as the strategic leadership to ensure the successful pursuit of the end state envisioned by the coalition. This study will illustrate that this dominant partner was the Austrian Empire, personified by Prince Metternich at the strategic level and Field Marshal Schwarzenburg at the operational level. These two leaders effectively ensured unity of effort of a coalition wrought with a dysfunctional command structure, coupled with disparate National Objectives, to obtain the initial overthrow of Napoleon.
- Paperback | 32 pages
- 215.9 x 279.4 x 1.78mm | 127.01g
- 02 Jun 2015
- United States
- black & white illustrations