The Principles of War Podcast

James Eling

We look at the great battles and campaigns of history through the lens of the Principles of War.

We look at the great victories and defeats of history to better understand the conduct of war.

All Episodes

This is part of a 2 part military deception miniseries looking at why Rommel placed his Divisions where he did and how his mobility was limited by deception. We review doctrine on Surprise and Security.  Deception is often a critical partner to Surprise, but without Security, your deception measures are unlikely to be effective. We look at the large contribution to the battle (and the war) made by the 2/24th Battalion at the battle of Tel el Eisa when they captured the German Sigint company. This episode is part of our series looking at decisive artillery battles in the history of Australia and is part of our 150 years of Australian Army commemoration.  Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast.

Dec 1

34 min 20 sec

This episode looks at the lead up to the 2nd Battle of El Alamein, including the Gazala Gallop, the 'Flap' and Ash Wednesday in Cairo. This episode is part of our series looking at decisive artillery battles in the history of Australia and is part of our 150 years of Australian Army commemoration.  Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast.

Nov 15

40 min 19 sec

This is a special miniseries on Vimy Ridge to celebrate 150 years of Permanent Artillery since the formation of A and B Batteries, Royal Canadian Artillery.  This episode discusses the 4 phases of the artillery support and discusses how it set the conditions for the infantries successful assault of Vimy Ridge. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast.

Nov 8

36 min 25 sec

This is a special miniseries on Vimy Ridge to celebrate 150 years of Permanent Artillery since the formation of A and B Batteries, Royal Canadian Artillery.  This episode looks at Flash Spotting, the work of Andrew McNaughton and the role of the CBSO. We look at the development of the 'dark art' of artillery and in particular Counter Battery fires. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast.

Nov 1

34 min 57 sec

This is a special miniseries to celebrate 150 years of Permanent Artillery since the formation of A and B Batteries, Royal Canadian Artillery.  This episode details the conduct of the Battle of Vimy Ridge, a stunning success for the Canadian Corps. This follows on from our Bullecourt series.  The Battle of Bullecourt occured 48 hours later and 30 km south of the Battle of Vimy Ridge.  We will compare and contrast Vimy Ridge with Bullecourt to highlight to real cost of failing to correctly plan and resource an attack. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast.

Oct 29

31 min 28 sec

This is a special miniseries to celebrate 150 years of Permanent Artillery since the formation of A and B Batteries, Royal Canadian Artillery.  Vimy Ridge is seen as the birth of the Canadian nation.  It is a model of a well planned Corps attack.  Well resourced, well planned and very well rehearsed we look to understand what went right at Vimy Ridge. This episode details the planning for Vimy Ridge. This follows on from our Bullecourt series.  The Battle of Bullecourt occured 48 hours later and 30 km south of the Battle of Vimy Ridge.  We will compare and contrast Vimy Ridge with Bullecourt to highlight to real cost of failing to correctly plan and resource an attack. This is part of our 150th Anniversary of the Royal Australian Artillery series. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast.

Oct 22

29 min 23 sec

This is the 4th episode in our Bullecourt series. "With artillery support we can keep the position till the cows come home." So wrote CAPT Harry Murray, VC, OC A Coy after the 4th and 12th Brigades had fought their way into the Siegfried Line - they didn't get it and were forced to conduct an extremely difficult withdrawal under heavy machine gun fire.  Why didn't he get the support that he needed? This is part of our 150th Anniversary of the Royal Australian Artillery series. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast.

Oct 20

23 min 36 sec

What mistakes occurred at the operational level in the planning of the Battle of Bullecourt? What role did Gough play in the debacle? Why did he make such grievous errors of judgement? 'Bullecourt, more than any other battle, shook the confidence of Australian soldiers in the capacity of the British command; the errors, especially on April 10th and 11th, were obvious to almost everyone'. Charles Bean, Official Historian. This is part of our 150th Anniversary of the Royal Australian Artillery series. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast.

Oct 16

29 min 11 sec

What planning was done for the First Battle of Bullecourt and why was it so flawed?  We discuss artillery logistics and planning, mission analysis and how the plan came about in the time available. This is part of our 150th Anniversary of the Royal Australian Artillery series. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Oct 5

32 min 46 sec

CEW Bean, the author of the official History wrote that Australian troops braved the odds in numerous battles, but that Bullecourt was the most brilliant of these achievements, impressing both enemy and friends alike. Why was it a magnificent achievement? What role did Artillery play and what lessons can be learnt? This is part of our 150th Anniversary of the Royal Australian Artillery series. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Sep 30

26 min 34 sec

This is the fifth part of our CoG analysis for the Battle of France series. We discuss the task before Panzergruppe Kleist as it becomes the German Schwerpunkt. Thank you to the British Army's Lessons Exploitation Centre for the assistance with getting the resources for this podcast series. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Jul 15

32 min 54 sec

This is the fourth part of our CoG analysis for the Battle of France series. We discuss the Center of Gravity for Germany.  An interesting case as the Strategic Center of Gravity was unable to defeat France, so the Wehrmacht developed a highly risky operational Center of Gravity to defeat France in just 46 days - something that they could not achieve in all of WW1. How did the German's temporally dislocate themselves at the Strategic level? How could they avoid the nightmare of a two front war? Would they succumb to the siren song of the Schlieffin Plan and a quick win with all the risk that entails? Thank you to the British Army's Lessons Exploitation Centre for the assistance with getting the resources for this podcast series. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Jul 8

29 min 32 sec

This is the third part of our CoG analysis for the Battle of France series. We discuss the Centre of Gravity for the French. What was their CoG?  Was it effective and why did the Wehrmacht strike right at the heart of it? Thank you to the British Army's Lessons Exploitation Centre for the assistance with getting the resources for this podcast series. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Jun 14

28 min

This is the second part of our CoG analysis for the Battle of France series. We discuss the Centre of Gravity under the Churchill Government. What was Churchill trying to achieve and what was the one entity that was going to achieve it?  Thank you to the British Army's Lessons Exploitation Centre for the assistance with getting the resources for this podcast series. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Jun 8

29 min 16 sec

This is the first of a 4 part miniseries on Centre of Gravity analysis for the Battle of France, 1940.  Thank you to the British Army's Lessons Exploitation Centre for the assistance with getting the resources for this podcast series. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

May 31

34 min 2 sec

Battle of France II - Campaign Overview. This episode is the second part of our overview of the Battle of France Campaign. Thank you to the British Army's Lessons Exploitation Centre for the assistance with getting the resources for this podcast series. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

May 25

40 min 33 sec

Battle of France II - Campaign Overview. This episode is the first part of our overview of the Battle of France Campaign. Thank you to the British Army's Lessons Exploitation Centre for the assistance with getting the resources for this podcast series. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

May 17

27 min 28 sec

The German Army's tanks were outnumbered 1.7:1 and most of the tanks were inferior, and yet the French were defeated extremely quickly.  This podcast series will focus on the counter attack at Arras, but we will look at a large number of issues throughout the Battle of France. Thank you to the British Army's Lessons Exploitation Centre for the assistance with getting the resources for this podcast series. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

May 10

38 min 15 sec

This is the first of a special series of podcasts commemorating 150 years of permanent Artillery in Australia. This episode looks at A Bty's deployment to the Boer War, the action that it saw and the firing of the first shot of the First World War. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Apr 7

31 min 51 sec

This is the first of a special series of podcasts commemorating 150 years of permanent Artillery in Australia. This episodes looks at the early years. The birth of 'A' Battery The range of batteries, and their equipment and how they trained The first deployment The birth of the School of Artilllery Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Apr 1

35 min 28 sec

This is Part II of our interview with Sir Max Hastings, the author of Vietnam, An Epic Tragedy. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Feb 15

20 min 53 sec

This is Part I of our interview with Sir Max Hastings, the author of Vietnam, An Epic Tragedy. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Feb 8

20 min 18 sec

This is Part V of our look at Lord Horatio Nelson and the practice of Mission Command.  Check out episode 1 of our Nelson and Mission Command series.  This covers the amphibious raid on Tenerife and what went wrong in Nelson's worst defeat. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Feb 2

29 min 50 sec

This is Part IV of our look at Lord Horatio Nelson and the practice of Mission Command.  Check out episode 1 of our Nelson and Mission Command series.  This covers the lead up to the Battle of Tenerife - Nelson's worst defeat. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Jan 21

26 min 32 sec

This is Part V of our interview with LT COL Harry Smith, the OC of Delta Coy / 6 RAR at the Battle of Long Tan.   If you missed the first episode, check it out here.  He reflects on Delta's performance during the battle and also gives us his thoughts on the Danger Close movie about the Battle. We've also interviewed Dave Sabben about the Battle of Long Tan. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Dec 2020

21 min 49 sec

This is Part IV of our interview with LT COL Harry Smith, the OC of Delta Coy / 6 RAR at the Battle of Long Tan.   If you missed the first episode, check it out here.  We've also interviewed Dave Sabben about the Battle of Long Tan. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Nov 2020

24 min 56 sec

This presentation, is the final session of the Royal Australian Artillery Historical Company's Firepower: Lessons from the Great War Seminar Series.  This episode is the Q&A session from the Breaching the Hindenburg Line session. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Nov 2020

49 min 34 sec

This presentation, part of the Royal Australian Artillery Historical Company's Firepower: Lessons from the Great War Seminar Series.  This episode is presented by BRIG Craig Furini, Head of Regiment and he discusses the lessons for Artillery from the World War 1. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Oct 2020

34 min 55 sec

This presentation, part of the Royal Australian Artillery Historical Company's Firepower: Lessons from the Great War Seminar Series.  The episode brings together the lessons learnt from the Great War for Artillery. This episode is presented by LT COL Nick Floyd. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Oct 2020

13 min 12 sec

This presentation, part of the Royal Australian Artillery Historical Company's Firepower: Lessons from the Great War Seminar Series.  It looks at the career of MAJ GEN Walter Coxen. This episode is presented by COL Jason Cooke. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Oct 2020

19 min 9 sec

This presentation, part of the Royal Australian Artillery Historical Company's Firepower: Lessons from the Great War Seminar Series.  This episode is presented by Mr Adam Rankin. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Oct 2020

13 min 15 sec

This is Part III of our interview with LT COL Harry Smith, the OC of Delta Coy / 6 RAR at the Battle of Long Tan.   If you missed the first episode, check it out here.  We've also interviewed Dave Sabben about the Battle of Long Tan. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Sep 2020

23 min 22 sec

This is Part II of our interview with LT COL Harry Smith, the OC of Delta Coy / 6 RAR at the Battle of Long Tan.   If you missed the first episode, check it out here.  We've also interviewed Dave Sabben about the Battle of Long Tan. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Sep 2020

25 min 59 sec

This is Part I of our interview with LT COL Harry Smith, the OC of Delta Coy / 6 RAR at the Battle of Long Tan. This episode has Harry discussing his career at 2 Commando Company and his training philosophy. We've also interviewed Dave Sabben about the Battle of Long Tan. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Sep 2020

18 min 40 sec

This is Part III of our look at Lord Horatio Nelson and the practice of Mission Command.  Check out episode 1 of our Nelson and Mission Command series. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Jun 2020

21 min 51 sec

This is Part II of our look at Lord Horatio Nelson and the practice of Mission Command.  Check out episode 1 of our Nelson and Mission Command series.  Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Jun 2020

20 min 14 sec

This is Part I of our look at Lord Horatio Nelson and the practice of Mission Command. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Jun 2020

23 min 43 sec

This presentation, part of the Royal Australian Artillery Historical Company's Firepower: Lessons from the Great War Seminar Series.  This session is presented by Air Commodore Mark Lax (Retd) Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

May 2020

17 min 35 sec

This presentation, part of the Royal Australian Artillery Historical Company's Firepower: Lessons from the Great War Seminar Series.  This panel is hosted by Dr Tim McKenna and features discussion with Ellen Creswell, Dr Meleah Hampton, MAJ GEN Paul Stevens, RAA (Retd) and Air Commodore Mark LAX, RAAF (Retd) Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

May 2020

36 min 22 sec

This presentation, part of the Royal Australian Artillery Historical Company's Firepower: Lessons from the Great War Seminar Series. MAJ GEN Paul Stevens highlights the evolution of artillery tactics as they were in 1918.  How was artillery controlled in the advance? Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

May 2020

18 min 16 sec

This presentation, part of the Royal Australian Artillery Historical Company's Firepower: Lessons from the Great War Seminar Series.  This session is presented by Dr Meleah Hampton. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Apr 2020

19 min 8 sec

This presentation, part of the Royal Australian Artillery Historical Company's Firepower: Lessons from the Great War Seminar Series.  This session is presented by Ellen Creswell. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Apr 2020

17 min 5 sec

This is the first part of our study of the raid on Salamaua. We look at the genesis of SF in the Australian Army.  Why were they formed in the first place?  What was the detailed planning process that saw the formation of the Independent Companies and what were the likely tasks that they would undertake. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Mar 2020

25 min 54 sec

This presentation, part of the Royal Australian Artillery Historical Company's Firepower: Lessons from the Great War Seminar Series.  This session is presented by Professor Peter Stanley. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Mar 2020

22 min 15 sec

This presentation, part of the Royal Australian Artillery Historical Company's Firepower: Lessons from the Great War Seminar Series.  This session is presented by MAJ Darryl Kelly RAA (Retd). Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Mar 2020

20 min 18 sec

This presentation, part of the Royal Australian Artillery Historical Company's Firepower: Lessons from the Great War Seminar Series.  This session is presented by Dr Elizabeth Greenhalgh. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Mar 2020

21 min 33 sec

This presentation, part of the Royal Australian Artillery Historical Company's Firepower: Lessons from the Great War Seminar Series.  This session is presented by Dr William Westerman. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Mar 2020

15 min 48 sec

This presentation, part of the Royal Australian Artillery Historical Company's Firepower: Lessons from the Great War Seminar Series.  This session is presented by Dr Roger Lee. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Mar 2020

15 min 51 sec

This presentation, part of the Royal Australian Artillery Historical Company's Firepower: Lessons from the Great War Seminar Series.  This session is presented by Dr Tim McKenna. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Mar 2020

28 min 28 sec

This presentation, part of the Royal Australian Artillery Historical Company's Firepower: Lessons from the Great War Seminar Series.  This session is presented by LT COL Chris Gardiner, RAAC. Check out the show notes for the podcast for all of the information that we cover in this episode as well as the images and other details that didn't make it into the podcast. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Feb 2020

19 min 44 sec