Carl von Clausewitz (1780 –1831) stands out from other writers of military classics because rather than looking at war as purely a matter of mathematical theory of probability and calculation, he instead examines it critically seeing war also as a political instrument. To do this he, broke war down into its fundamental parts and recognized them all as necessary aspects to his theory. This is unlike many other military theorists such as Antoine Henri Jomini (1779-1869) who placed no emphasis on political goals. Clausewitz’s work was highly influenced by the Enlightenment and sought to examine warfare as a rational tool for political policy. Concerned with the political and military aspect, like Niccolo Machiavelli (1469-1527), Clausewitz was addressing the concept of war as pertaining to a nation state or a political entity. Because of his grounding in Enlightenment values, Clausewitz examines war as a rational option in politics and not just a random act of human emotion. Thus his On War, though written in the early nineteenth century, continues to influence political and military leaders today because it remains an applicable study of the application of force between political entities, taking into account not just mathematical studies, but elements of human nature and the primacy of aligning political and military goals in war.

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