chapter  11
17 Pages

Not in quiet English fields: the Royal Navy and combined operations

ByJOSEPH MORETZ

Before 1914 combined operations, or what are now styled as joint amphibious operations, were always more than the execution of an opposed landing. This is important to recall because much of our understanding of the nature of this style of operation has been conditioned by what transpired in the Eastern Mediterranean from late 1914 through early 1916. This is not to discount the importance of the Dardanelles-Gallipoli campaign, but that saga is better seen as but one type of operation existing on a continuum of war where naval support was rendered to military forces which contemporary officers readily appreciated. From shore bombardments, administrative landings, feints, raids, blocking operations, opposed landings to executing a full-scale invasion, the naval officers of the prewar period who thought about such matters had a richer understanding of the possibilities than sometimes allowed. And perforce as every combined operation must at some point end, even the manner of evacuation was understood as a unique form of combined operation.