The entire time I was reading this paper I was thinking about several acronyms that are standard in the planning of any military operation be it offensive or defensive. EMDCOA (enemy’s most dangerous course of action), ECG (enemies center of gravity), EMLCOA (enemies most likely course of action), and ECV (enemies critical vulnerability).
These acronyms reside within the “S” or the “situation” part of the larger scheme of mission planning known as OSMEAC. This stands for orientation, situation, mission, execution, administration and logistics, command and signal.
First the offensive application: According to the essay, or my interpretation of it, the Nazi’s center of gravity was its production power (i.e. plants, mines, laborers etc), not necessarily what it produced. The reason to identify an enemy’s center of gravity is not to attack it, but to assist in identifying its critical vulnerability. At the very center of the Nazi’s center of gravity was its critical vulnerability, or the targets that would have the greatest effect of their center of gravity (i.e. electrical plants, fuel production etc). The failure of the Allies to effectively identify and engage these targets resulted in the Nazi’s continued production of war machines.
The defensive application: After reviewing the lessons learned about the effects of the nuclear bombs that were dropped in Japan, we began to establish our own defensive strategies to the threat of a Soviet nuclear attack or the EMDCOA. We identified our own center of gravity, a combination of civilian population density and production power, and decided to decentralize it in order to avoid an effective ballistic bombardment, or the EMLCOA.