Operations, Cold-Weather

Of the many possible weather and terrain environments for military operations, cold-weather environments must rank as the most inhospitable to forces and to humans in general. Throughout the history of warfare, cold weather stands out as a critical determinant of military success, equal and in some cases surpassing the importance of enemy forces. Cold weather has affected the fates of ancient armies, like those of Hannibal, and armed forces performing current operations, like the multinational forces engaged in Operation Anaconda in Afghanistan in 2002. With the increasing national competition for Arctic resources and transportation routes in the 21st century, it seems likely that cold weather will continue to play a decisive role in military operations into the foreseeable future. This entry defines cold-weather conditions ...

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