The Importance Of Military Acumen Essay

660 words - 3 pages

Machiavellian ideology often times contradicts conventional ideas of how a prince should govern. It justifies cruelty but only to sustain the power of a Prince when necessary. Principalities are undoubtedly dynamic in actions and thought. Machiavelli makes this a pervasive theme throughout The Prince and although one can obtain a principality in several ways, Machiavelli believed that those who rule do so to push people around. According to him, “it is a very natural and ordinary thing to desire to acquire, and always, when men do it who can, they will be praised or not blamed” (Machiavelli 14). While principalities are inherently powerful, still it is necessary to establish a strong military and hone one’s abilities in the art of war.
To begin with, Machiavelli believed that a prince should “not take anything else as his art but that of war and its orders and discipline” (Machiavelli 58). In chapter XIV when stating the importance of studying the art of war we realize how dynamic a prince’s actions must be for “he should never lift his thoughts from the exercise of [this art], and in peace he should exercise it more than in war“ (Machiavelli 60). This not only makes the prince a well-informed leader to his military but it also keeps him well aware of strategic warfare. In times of war a well-informed prince will know his terrain, his mountains, and his rivers. He will make intelligent use of these natural defenses. It is equally important however to fortify one’s own towns.
In the same way that it is significant to understand and practice the art of war, it is equally important that one pay heed to the town’s fortification. This not only includes physical barriers that become invaluable in times of war but also extends to necessities such as food and water during times of war. Here, Machiavelli states the example of Germany who “did not fear [the emperor] or any other power around, because they [were] so well fortified that everyone...

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