Clausewitz: I Said War With (mit) Other Means, NOT War By Other Means

Ethics, Government, Military

clausewitz croppedEverything You Know About Clausewitz Is Wrong

A botched translation of Clausewitz has had an enduring impact on our thinking on warfare.

James Holmes, The Diplomat, 12 November 2014

Specifically, Paret and Howard entitle Book One, Chapter One, Section 24 (page 87 if you have your copy handy) “War Is Merely the Continuation of Policy by Other Means.” That’s how they render “Der Krieg ist eine bloße Fortsetzung der Politik mit anderen Mitteln” into English. Properly translated, however, the title reads “War Is a Mere Continuation of Policy with Other Means.” “With,” not “by.” There is zero ambiguity in the German. The translators, or perhaps their publisher, flub this one.