“Monday Musings” are designed to get quick, insightful thoughts based around three questions from those interested in strategy, from the most experienced and lauded, to our newest thinkers/writers.
1 — Who had the greatest impact on you intellectually (whether through writing, mentorship, etc.)?
Dr. Richard Kohn who was my advisor at the University of North Carolina. He demanded precision in thinking and language. The officer from whom I learned the most early in my career was LTG (ret.) Don Holder. He has an uncanny sense of what are the essential elements of combat effectiveness.
2 — What book (fiction, history, or academic) do you think best explains strategy?
Of course, On War, by Carl von Clausewitz. It is a framework for thinking about war. It will allow those who read and think about it early in their careers to place what they read subsequently in context.
3 — What do you want your legacy to be?
It is those who you influence in hopefully a positive way. Your legacy is those who continue to serve.
Lieutenant General H.R. McMaster is the Director, Army Capabilities Integration Center and Deputy Commanding General, Futures, US Army Training and Doctrine Command. The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not reflect the official policy or position of the U.S. Army, the Department of Defense, or the U.S. Government.
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