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Reasons for military structure: More on why we have officers and enlisted peeps

One reason rulers liked having foreigners in the ranks was that outlanders were thought less likely to ally themselves with peasant revolts.

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Annals of civilian control: Queen Victoria’s short leash on her army

Here’s something I learned from Andrew Roberts’ quirky book Eminent Churchillians: “Queen Victoria insisted that every military appointment over the rank of colonel was submitted to her before it was made.”

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10 best books about how the Plains Indians adapted their mode of warfare

We typically think of the Plains Indian warrior mounted, usually on a painted pinto pony, wearing a breech-clout, long flowing feathered bonnet, and little else, with a bow and arrow or decorated Winchester in his hand, conducting a lightening raid, riding off, yipping, over the horizon; the “world’s finest light cavalry” someone was supposed to have said. That, however, was a particular adaptation of traditional modes of warfare to specific technological changes, specifically the horse and the gun, which spread across the Plains from roughly the late-seventeenth century.

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Thinking about military structure as the point of departure for adjusting to future

Lately I’ve been persuaded by the argument that the point of departure for the future of the military is how it is structured.

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A very British list of war memoirs

It leaves out a lot of my favorites, even British ones, by authors such as Robert Graves, Keith Douglas and Field Marshal Slim. Still, an interesting list for including people like Spike Milligan.

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A lesson in every war: Survive the first few missions — your chances improve greatly

“If you lived the first three, four, five or six sorties, you cottoned on very quickly and learned the business of rubbernecking,” recalled a British pilot quoted in Joshua Levine’s Forgotten Voices of the Blitz and the Battle for Britain. “Because far more pilots were shot down by aircraft they never saw than by ones they actually did see.”

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What do you know about the Lusitania?

As a kid, in grade school, we saw an old movie about the sinking of the Titanic. I don’t remember, but it might have been Roy Ward Baker’s A Night To Remember. Whatever it was, the sinking of the Titanic was always in the front of my mind when someone mentioned the words “passenger ship” and “sunk.” The attack and sinking of the Lusitania, however, was a footnote in our history books; maybe it made half the page — if that.

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Enoch Powell’s amazing WWII career

When people remember Enoch Powell today, if at all, it is as an anti-immigration Tory politician in Britain.

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