Army Logistics - Why Does The Military Need It?

Army logistics, also known as military logistics, refers to the art and science of the process of planning and making sure that the movement and maintenance of the armed forces is in due accordance with the laid-down plans and procedures. Army logistics deals with procurement, maintenance, distribution and replacement of personnel and material.

Army logistics, when taken in a comprehensive sense, deals with: 1. Designing, developing, storage, maintenance and acquisition, disposition and evacuation of material. 2. Hospitalization, evacuation and movement of personnel. 3. Furnishing or acquisition of services. 4. Maintenance, operations, acquisition and disposition of available facilities.

Army logistics is as old as the concept of war. In ancient times, people used to find their own knotted clubs, place of shelter and food during the time of war. Every soldier was himself responsible for obtaining his necessities. With the advances associated with time, soldiers joined larger groups and some men were assigned the task of arranging these items of necessities for their counterparts. These were among the first instances of an army logistics organization.

Logistics cannot be termed as an exact science as it does not follow a defined set of principles or adhere to previously laid guidelines in the same manner each time. It does not even follow a pre-defined set of tables as in case of science. Military logistics is dynamic in nature. Therefore a particular solution cannot be prescribed for every similar situation. It is primarily concerned with ensuring services and supplies at the right time, at the right place, when and where needed, in the most optimal and economical way and by making use of the best available options to do the task.

The personnel engaged in army logistics take the decisions regarding any type of problems which are logistical in nature. This is done by them through their ability to analyze, interpret, intuition and by using their past experiences. The decision-making ability of these people is not solely dependent upon the professional knowledge imparted to them from the military institutions, but also from tactics, strategy, personnel and training.

Matters related to logistics have frequently been of utmost importance in deciding the outcome of wars. This can be clearly understood by taking as example the failure of the German naval force to sink enough cargo in the 2nd Atlantic Battle of the Second World War, which helped the British troops to continue fighting. It is often believed that the destruction of the enemy's supply lines and guarding own supply lines is a crucial element in deciding the outcome of the war.

Modern developments have led to enhanced army logistics performance due to less use of time and financial resources. This has raised the standard of the armed forces and in a way, has proved to be beneficial for their overall growth and development. Accuracy and speed are the major factors nowadays for the flow of information and materials from its providers to its users.

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