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Clausewitz Condensed

Economy of Force

Closely connected to the idea of concentration of force is the concept of economy of force. Clausewitz underlines the need to ensure that "no part of the whole [military] force is idle." (213) Some writers have misinterpreted his use of the word "economy" to mean economizing rather than effective use of force.

Clausewitz makes it clear, however, that emphasis should be placed on the effective use of armed force, and that ultimately force should continuously adhere and contribute to the political purpose: "Any unnecessary expenditure of time, every unnecessary detour, is a waste of strength and thus abhorrent to strategic thought." (624)