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ARMY

is due to the fact that such fugitives do not desert to the enemy, but reappear in the ranks of their own side; it must not therefore be assumed that men have become braver because the “missing” are not so numerous. In colonial and savage warfare the superior personal qualities of the voluntary soldier often count for more than skill on the part of the officers. These would be diminished by shortening the time of service, and this fact, with the expense of transport, entails that a reasonably long period must be spent with the colours. On the other hand, the provision of the large armies of modern warfare requires the maintenance of a reserve, and no reserve is possible if the whole period for which men will enlist is spent with the colours. The demand for long service in the individual, and for trained men in the aggregate, thus produces a compromise. The principle of long service, i.e. ten years or more with the colours, is not applicable to the needs of the modern grande guerre; it gives neither great initial strength nor great reserves. The force thus produced is costly and not lightly to be risked; it affords relatively little opportunity for the training of officers, and tends to become a class apart from the rest of the population. On the other hand, such a force is the best possible army for foreign and colonial service. A state therefore which relies on voluntary enlistment for its forces at home and abroad, must either keep an army which is adaptable to both functions or maintain a separate service for each.

In a state where relatively small armaments are maintained in peace, voluntary armies are infinitely superior to any that could be obtained under any system of compulsion. The state can afford to give a good wage, and can therefore choose its recruits carefully. It can thus have either a few incomparable veteran soldiers (long-service), or a fairly large number of men of superior physique and intelligence, who have received an adequate short-service training. Even the youngest of such men are capable of good service, while the veterans are probably better soldiers than any to be found in conscript armies. This is, however, a special case. The raw material of any but a small voluntary army usually tends to be drawn from inferior sources; the cost of a larger force, paid the full wages of skilled labourers, would be very great, and numbers commensurate with those of an army of the other model could only be obtained at an exorbitant price. The short-service principle is therefore accepted. Here, however, as recruiting depends upon the good-will of the people, it is impossible to work the soldiers with any degree of rigour. Hence the voluntary soldier must serve longer than a conscript in order to attain the same proficiency. The reserve is thus weakened, and the total trained regular force diminished. Moreover, as fewer recruits are required annually, there is less work for the officers to do. In the particular case of Great Britain it is practically certain that in future, reliance will be placed upon the auxiliary forces and the civil population for the provision of the enormous reserves required in a great war; this course is, however, only feasible in the case of an insular nation which has time to collect its strength for the final and decisive blow overseas. The application of the same principle to a continental military power depends on the capacity for stern and unflagging resistance displayed by the corps de couverture charged with the duty of gaining the time necessary for the development and concentration of the national masses. In Great Britain (except in the case of a surprise invasion) the place of this corps would be taken by “command of the sea.” Abroad, the spirit of the exposed regiments themselves furnishes the only guarantee, and this can hardly be calculated with sufficient certainty, under modern conditions, to justify the adoption of this new “enlistment system.” Voluntary service, therefore, with all its intrinsic merits, is only applicable to the conditions of a great war when the war reserve can be trained ad hoc.

43. The militia idea (see Militia) has been applied most completely in Switzerland, which has no regular army, but trains almost the whole nation as a militia. The system, with many serious disadvantages, has the great merit that the maximum number of men receives a certain amount of training at a minimum cost both to the state and to the individual. Mention should also be made of the system of augmenting the national forces by recruiting “foreign legions.” This is, of course, a relic of the Werbe-system; it was practised habitually by the British governments of the 18th and early 19th centuries. “Hessians” figured conspicuously in the British armies in the American War of Independence, and the “King’s German Legion” was only the best and most famous of many foreign corps in the service of George III. during the Revolutionary and Napoleonic wars. A new German Legion was raised during the Crimean War, but the almost universal adoption of the Krümper system has naturally put an end to the old method, for all the best recruits are now accounted for in the service of their own countries.


Army Organization

44. Arms of the Service.—Organization into “arms” is produced by the multiplicity of the weapons used, their functions and their limitations. The “three arms”—a term universally applied to infantry (q.v.), cavalry (q.v.) and artillery (q.v.)—coexist owing to the fact that each can undertake functions which the others cannot properly fulfil. Thus cavalry can close with an enemy at the quickest pace, infantry can work in difficult ground, and artillery is effective at great ranges. Infantry indeed, having the power of engaging both at close quarters and at a distance, constitutes the chief part of a fighting force. Other “arms,” such as mounted infantry, cyclists, engineers, &c., are again differentiated from the three chief arms by their proper functions. In deciding upon the establishment in peace, or the composition of a force for war, it is therefore necessary to settle beforehand the relative importance of these functions in carrying out the work in hand. Thus an army operating in Essex would be unusually strong in infantry, one on Salisbury Plain would possess a great number of guns, and an army operating on the South African veldt would consist very largely of mounted men. The normal European war has, however, naturally been taken as the basis upon which the relative proportions of the three arms are calculated. At the battle of Kolin (1757) the cavalry was more than half as strong as the infantry engaged. At Borodino (1812) there were 39 cavalry to 100 of other arms, and 5 guns per 1000 men. In 1870 the Germans had at the outset 7 cavalrymen to every 100 men of other arms, the French 10. As for guns, the German artillery had 3, the French 3½ per 1000 men. In more modern times the proportions have undergone some alteration, the artillery having been increased, and the cavalry brought nearer to the Napoleonic standard. Thus the relative proportions, in peace time, now stand at 5 or 6 guns per 1000 men, and 16 cavalry soldiers to 100 men of other arms. It must be borne in mind that cavalry and artillery are maintained in peace at a higher effective than infantry, the strength of the latter being much inflated in war, while cavalry and artillery are not easily extemporized. Thus in the Manchurian campaign these proportions were very different. The Russian army on the eve of the battle of Mukden (20th of February 1905) consisted of 370 battalions, 142 squadrons and 153 field batteries (1200 guns), with, in addition, over 200 heavy guns. The strength of this force, which was organized in three armies, was about 300,000 infantry and 18,000 cavalry and Cossacks, with 3½ guns per 1000 men of other arms. The Japanese armies consisted of 300,000 infantry, 11,000 cavalry, 900 field and 170 heavy guns, the proportion of field artillery being 2½ guns per 1000 men.

It is perhaps not superfluous to mention that all the smaller units in a modern army consist of one arm only. Formerly several dissimilar weapons were combined in the same unit. The knight with his four or five variously armed retainers constituted an example of this method of organization, which slowly died out as weapons became more uniform and their functions better defined.

45. Command.—The first essential of a good organization is to ensure that each member of the organized body, in his own sphere of action, should contribute his share to the achievement of the common object. Further, it is entirely beyond the power