July 14, 2005 6:09 AM Subscribe
Lanchester's Law (pdf file) broadly states that in warfare it takes an N-square-fold increase in quality to make up for an N-square increase in quantity. In other words, gains in technological superiority do not multiply as fast as increases in in troop strength. When the warfare is asymmetrical, numerical superiority become even more important. With complaints that the US Army is understaffed (there are 1/3 fewer troops now than in 1991 when the US fought the first Gulf war) Democrats in the House and Senate - led by Joseph Lieberman and Hillary Clinton - are proposing to increase the size of the US Army by 80,000 troops - more than twice what the Army asked for and counter to the argument made by the the CATO institute that troop strength should be decreased.
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