What are the similarities between tanks and cyberspace? What lessons can be identified and learned?
When the British first used the tank in combat at Flers-Courcelette in April of 1916 and then more successfully at the Battle of Cambrai in November a year later, there was likely little further thought given to the larger implications of this new weapon system capability, beyond the hope and investment in the belief that the trinity of its firepower, protection and mobility would be decisive in breaking the stalemate of trench warfare. Tanks did not tip the balance of World War I because they were produced in very small numbers and the few that made it to battlefield were slow, prone to break down, and carried undersized and inaccurate main guns. Commanders seemed unclear how to best utilize them.
By World War II, however, Guderian and others had recognized the tank’s devastating potential and utilized its trinity to deliver a decisive over-match through greatly improved firepower and mobility to enable lightening war, introduced as the radical new concept of Blitzkrieg, in which aircraft, tanks, and infantry each operated at their own best speed toward enemy emplacements. The subsequent staggering success fundamentally altered the execution of war for the German Army of the late 1930s and, furthermore, became the underlying doctrine for maneuver warfare through the Cold War and onward into this century.