Wednesday, 4 June 2008

"Bungling,confusion,misplaced power"

Richard Overy in his remarkable book "Why the Allies won" describes how the Germans frittered their technical lead and their scarce resources away during World War 2 ;

"The German armed forces pursued technical excellence for its own sake..... The military domination of production had mixed effects. There is no dispute that Germany developed weapons of very high quality...but the pursuit of advanced weaponry came at a price. Instead of a core of proven designs produced on standard lines the German forces developed a bewildering array of projects. At one point in the war there were no fewer than 425 different aircraft models.

' Nobody could seriously believe that so much bungling, confusion, misplaced power, failure to recognise the truth and deviation from the reasonable could really exist.' complained a group of German engineers."

Well today we have news that the National Audit Office has discovered 8 Chinook helicopters which have been so specially modified to the requirements of the British military establishment that they are unsuitable for use seven years after original delivery, despite them being badly needed, and the modifications to bring them back to service will double their original cost.

In trying to get certainty you often miss achieving your objective.

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