British Historian B. H. Liddell Hart wrote after the war that in North Africa “if either side is inferior in (tank quality), the quality of their troops and command must make up for the disadvantage. But there is no compensating for the lack of an air force or for shortage of supplies.” Rommel demonstrated how superior leadership can sometimes overcome even material disadvantage. All other things being equal, leadership will trump opponents who might have some advantage in numbers and technology.
On August 2, 1990 Saddam Hussein invaded the oil-rich country of Kuwait. President George H. W. Bush immediately ordered U.S. troops to Saudi Arabia to defend its ally, and demanded Saddam withdraw or risk U.S. invasion. About 2,500 miles to the northwest, I was a cavalry trooper in the tank-heavy Second Squadron, Second Armored Cavalry Regiment (ACR) preparing for the likely deployment to the Iraqi desert. To prepare for this future battle, we turned to the past for help: German General Erwin Rommel.