WS&S

Wargames, Soldiers & Strategy

Monday, May 16, 2016

The weight of command.

After an interesting discussion on last night's paint and chat regarding an upcoming battle we have planned, I penned the following.

Mikhail Kutuzov left the warming glow of the campfire and his Corps Commanders. He needed to be alone to think. He carefully walked to the edge of the bluff on which his headquarters were situated and looked down on a myriad of twinkling campfires that stretched in both directions as far as the eye could see. Smoke, cooking food and snatches of men's voices could be heard as they mingled together and drifted up to his position.

How many of those men would still be alive to eat an evening meal tomorrow?

His raised his eyes to the distant hills, they too were blanketed by twinkling campfires, that looked for all the world like the stars in the sky. The enemy too, would no doubt be cooking food, the men talking and laughing, living for the moment and not thinking about what the dawn will bring.
Was the enemy commander looking across to this very position at this moment? Was he also alone and struggling under the weight of his command.? Had he too tried to allow for every possibility that may occur in the battle that would be fought in the morning?

Mikhail Kutuzov had hammered home to his Corps commanders the importance of communication, they could carry out their orders as they saw fit, they were all competent men. But he needed to be kept informed at all times, being blind on the battlefield had always been his greatest fear.

He turned back to the campfire, he would sleep little tonight, the fate of this army and perhaps his nation, would depend on how he and his men performed in the heat of battle...

It will be interesting how much information he actually does receive.

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