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# Despite the tremendous technological advances of the modern era, schol

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Updated on: 10 Aug 2019, 05:25
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Despite the tremendous technological advances of the modern era, scholars of military strategy still study the tactics of a general whose armies at one time dominated all of continental Europe: Napoleon. In general, Napoleon’s tactics were based on innovation and the element of surprise. His main objective was the complete destruction of the enemy’s main body. He achieved this feat in different ways according to the situation at hand, but the general principles behind his tactics were the same: keep the enemy at a disadvantage and maintain the initiative.

In battle, Napoleon’s tactics often diverged from the accepted battle plans of the day, one of the reasons for his immense success. Where the situation allowed, he often severed enemy supply lines and communications, creating confusion and putting his enemy at a significant disadvantage before the battle even began. When Napoleon had the luxury of superior numbers, one of his maneuvers was to create a diversion with some of his troops while secretly moving most of his forces around the enemy, enveloping the opposing army. Whenever his forces were outnumbered, he relied on other tactics, one of which was to wedge his army between two concentrations of enemy troops. His forces could then converge on one group at a time, in each case enjoying superior numbers.

Napoleon’s victories in battle did not result only from the tactical surprises he inflicted on his enemy on the battlefield; Napoleon also made notable changes in the manner in which his armies functioned off the battlefield. Most notably, his soldiers learned to live off the land instead of dragging around mile-long baggage trains, as was the custom at the time. This mobility allowed his armies to march faster than the other armies of the day, giving him the ability to make surprising strategic moves that were so crucial for his victories in battle.

1) Which of the following, if true, would most weaken the author's statement that Napoleon's tactics were based on innovation and the element of surprise?

A) Napoleon's enemies often used his attack patterns when fighting against him after their allies had been defeated by Napoleon using those same tactics.
B) Napoleon was eventually defeated by the unexpected attack of several armies of countries he had previously occupied.
C) Further studies of Napoleon's battle plans show that he always planned every attack carefully and never strayed from those plans during battle.
D) Memoirs of Napoleon's enemies often reported that Napoleon's troops were unpredictable in battle and performed new and unexpected feats.
E) Battle plans of a British general were found showing a planned attack on Napoleon's troops using a strategy previously thought to be one of Napoleon's design.

OA:

OE:
In this example, the battle plan thought to be Napoleon's could possibly have been copied from a British general, showing that Napoleon's tactics were not innovative. Although it is not obvious that Napoleon copied the attack plan, this answer choice is the only one which offers the possibility of weakening the author's statement.

2) What may be inferred about other armies during Napoleon's time from the tactics Napoleon used to fight against them?

A) They lacked resourceful and creative generals.
B) Their weaponry was not as effective as that of Napoleon.
C) They never defeated Napoleon.
D) They were not self sufficient.
E) They were no different in structure from Napoleon's armies.
OA:

3) Which of the following is stated in the passage as Napoleon's goal in warfare?

A) obtaining wealth and power
B) surprising the enemy
C) destroying most of the enemy's troops
D) dominating all of continental Europe
E) maintaining the initiative

OA:

4) The author mentions the general principles behind Napoleon's tactics to

A) show that, despite the variety of methods he used, Napoleon had a system underlying his decisions
B) show that Napoleon always operated on the basis of well defined plans
C) compare Napoleon's actions with the accepted battle plans of the day
D) point out that Napoleon was not as flexible in his choice tactics as is commonly presumed
E) argue that Napoleon's tactics were the result of previous planning and not reactions to the activity of his enemies
OA:

Originally posted by goodyear2013 on 25 Mar 2014, 14:32.
Last edited by SajjadAhmad on 10 Aug 2019, 05:25, edited 1 time in total.
Updated complete topic (109).
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Re: Despite the tremendous technological advances of the modern era, schol  [#permalink]

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02 Jan 2015, 23:56
9
2
1)Which of the following, if true, would most weaken the author's statement that Napoleon's tactics were based on innovation and the element of surprise?
A) Napoleon's enemies often used his attack patterns when fighting against him after their allies had been defeated by Napoleon using those same tactics.
B) Napoleon was eventually defeated by the unexpected attack of several armies of countries he had previously occupied.
C) Further studies of Napoleon's battle plans show that he always planned every attack carefully and never strayed from those plans during battle.
D) Memoirs of Napoleon's enemies often reported that Napoleon's troops were unpredictable in battle and performed new and unexpected feats.
E) Battle plans of a British general were found showing a planned attack on Napoleon's troops using a strategy previously thought to be one of Napoleon's design.

>>This creates a doubt.This add a new factor mentioning that napoleon was not the only one to use those strategies.Not sure who copied whom and this caste doubt on the term innovation.

2) What may be inferred about other armies during Napoleon's time from the tactics Napoleon used to fight against them?
A) They lacked resourceful and creative generals.
B) Their weaponry was not as effective as that of Napoleon.
C) They never defeated Napoleon.
D) They were not self sufficient.
>>"Where the situation allowed, he often severed enemy supply lines and communications, creating confusion and putting his enemy at a significant disadvantage before the battle even began". I selected A but its too extreme and cant be proved from the premise.

E) They were no different in structure from Napoleon's armies.

3)Which of the following is stated in the passage as Napoleon's goal in warfare?
A) obtaining wealth and power
B) surprising the enemy
C) destroying most of the enemy's troops
>>" His main objective was the complete destruction of the enemy’s main body. "

D) dominating all of continental Europe
E) maintaining the initiative

4)The author mentions the general principles behind Napoleon's tactics to
A) show that, despite the variety of methods he used, Napoleon had a system underlying his decisions
>>"He achieved this feat in different ways according to the situation at hand, but the general principles behind his tactics were the same: keep the enemy at a disadvantage and maintain the initiative."

B) show that Napoleon always operated on the basis of well defined plans
C) compare Napoleon's actions with the accepted battle plans of the day
D) point out that Napoleon was not as flexible in his choice tactics as is commonly presumed
E) argue that Napoleon's tactics were the result of previous planning and not reactions to the activity of his enemies
##### General Discussion
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Re: Despite the tremendous technological advances of the modern era, schol  [#permalink]

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02 Jan 2015, 23:57
5
1)Which of the following, if true, would most weaken the author's statement that Napoleon's tactics were based on innovation and the element of surprise?
A) Napoleon's enemies often used his attack patterns when fighting against him after their allies had been defeated by Napoleon using those same tactics.
B) Napoleon was eventually defeated by the unexpected attack of several armies of countries he had previously occupied.
C) Further studies of Napoleon's battle plans show that he always planned every attack carefully and never strayed from those plans during battle.
D) Memoirs of Napoleon's enemies often reported that Napoleon's troops were unpredictable in battle and performed new and unexpected feats.
E) Battle plans of a British general were found showing a planned attack on Napoleon's troops using a strategy previously thought to be one of Napoleon's design.
>>This creates doubt.This add a new factor mentioning that napoleon was not the only one to use those strategies.Not sure who copied whom and this caste doubt on the term innovation.

2) What may be inferred about other armies during Napoleon's time from the tactics Napoleon used to fight against them?
A) They lacked resourceful and creative generals.
B) Their weaponry was not as effective as that of Napoleon.
C) They never defeated Napoleon.
D) They were not self sufficient.
>>"Where the situation allowed, he often severed enemy supply lines and communications, creating confusion and putting his enemy at a significant disadvantage before the battle even began". I selected A but its too extreme and cant be proved from the premise.

E) They were no different in structure from Napoleon's armies.

3)Which of the following is stated in the passage as Napoleon's goal in warfare?
A) obtaining wealth and power
B) surprising the enemy
C) destroying most of the enemy's troops
>>" His main objective was the complete destruction of the enemy’s main body. "

D) dominating all of continental Europe
E) maintaining the initiative

4)The author mentions the general principles behind Napoleon's tactics to
A) show that, despite the variety of methods he used, Napoleon had a system underlying his decisions
>>"He achieved this feat in different ways according to the situation at hand, but the general principles behind his tactics were the same: keep the enemy at a disadvantage and maintain the initiative."

B) show that Napoleon always operated on the basis of well defined plans
C) compare Napoleon's actions with the accepted battle plans of the day
D) point out that Napoleon was not as flexible in his choice tactics as is commonly presumed
E) argue that Napoleon's tactics were the result of previous planning and not reactions to the activity of his enemies
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Re: Despite the tremendous technological advances of the modern era, schol  [#permalink]

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06 Mar 2015, 17:57
The questions are a bit rough as compared to the RC, which is quite easy to understand.
I was slippin b/w A & D in question no. 2 but as jarvisR said that A is too extreme.
I selected D.
WOW..!! got all of them correct...!!
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Re: Despite the tremendous technological advances of the modern era, schol  [#permalink]

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30 Aug 2017, 08:52
2
IMO, E in question #1 doesn't weaken the statement "Napoleon's tactics were based on innovation and the element of surprise". What if Nepolean has used the same tactic previously and just only once, and the British general just imitated that. Even if the strategy which British General used was thought to be that of Nepolean, how can we assume that it cant be a coincidence. This passage doesn't look actual gmat like where no ambiguity is allowed.
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Re: Despite the tremendous technological advances of the modern era, schol  [#permalink]

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23 Aug 2018, 14:48
goofytiwari69 wrote:
i am a bit confused with question 2 . isn't option d ie. inferring that enemies were not self sufficient a little far fetched ?? also from last para we can say that the enemies lacked resourceful and creative generals.

In the passage, the author claims that Napoleon's army could live off the land or have a way to self-satisfy themselves that brought a significant advantage to them. Meanwhile, the other armies have not done that. The author does not explicitly mention that but the argument casts this idea.

Most notably, his soldiers learned to live off the land instead of dragging around mile-long baggage trains, as was the custom at the time. This mobility allowed his armies to march faster than the other armies of the day, giving him the ability to make surprising strategic moves that were so crucial for his victories in battle
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Re: Despite the tremendous technological advances of the modern era, schol  [#permalink]

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25 Aug 2018, 03:19
3
sandman13 wrote:
workout

I need your help with Q1

Quote:
1) Which of the following, if true, would most weaken the author's statement that Napoleon's tactics were based on innovation and the element of surprise?

A) Napoleon's enemies often used his attack patterns when fighting against him after their allies had been defeated by Napoleon using those same tactics.
B) Napoleon was eventually defeated by the unexpected attack of several armies of countries he had previously occupied.
C) Further studies of Napoleon's battle plans show that he always planned every attack carefully and never strayed from those plans during battle.
D) Memoirs of Napoleon's enemies often reported that Napoleon's troops were unpredictable in battle and performed new and unexpected feats.
E) Battle plans of a British general were found showing a planned attack on Napoleon's troops using a strategy previously thought to be one of Napoleon's design.

I chose choice A. My reasoning was as follows: if opponents were able to identify patterns, which were repetitive, we can say that the plans were not innovative?
Why exactly is A wrong?

sandman13

Here's what I think between options A and E. The question asks about "most weaken"

Option A states Napoleon's enemies used Napoleon's attack patterns after their allies had been defeated by Napoleon using those same tactics. So Napoleon introduced these tactics. At least at that time, they were innovative. Just because the enemies found some patterns, saying the tactics were not innovative is arguable.

Option E, on the other hand, shows a possibility that Napoleon copied the tactics from the battle plans of a British general. If Napoleon had copied the tactics, we can surely say there is zero innovation. Hence option E most weakens the author's statement.
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Re: Despite the tremendous technological advances of the modern era, schol  [#permalink]

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25 Aug 2018, 09:23
I got question 2 wrong. i dont know how D is right answer. can anyone help me?
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Re: Despite the tremendous technological advances of the modern era, schol  [#permalink]

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26 Aug 2018, 01:34
sananoor wrote:
I got question 2 wrong. i dont know how D is right answer. can anyone help me?

sananoor

From the following line from the paragraph, we can infer option D. Observe the world "supply lines".

Quote:
Where the situation allowed, he often severed enemy supply lines and communications

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Re: Despite the tremendous technological advances of the modern era, schol  [#permalink]

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30 Sep 2018, 03:04
3) Which of the following is stated in the passage as Napoleon's goal in warfare?

A) obtaining wealth and power
B) surprising the enemy
C) destroying most of the enemy's troops
D) dominating all of continental Europe
E) maintaining the initiative

I chose ans E as that is explicitly mentioned in para 1. Please advise why this is incorrect?
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Re: Despite the tremendous technological advances of the modern era, schol  [#permalink]

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30 Sep 2018, 22:55
akshita957 wrote:
3) Which of the following is stated in the passage as Napoleon's goal in warfare?

A) obtaining wealth and power
B) surprising the enemy
C) destroying most of the enemy's troops
D) dominating all of continental Europe
E) maintaining the initiative

I chose ans E as that is explicitly mentioned in para 1. Please advise why this is incorrect?

(E) was the principle behind his tactics, not his goal.

Paragraph 1 mentions "His main objective was the complete destruction of the enemy’s main body. " and that is why (C) is the answer.
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Re: Despite the tremendous technological advances of the modern era, schol  [#permalink]

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06 Oct 2018, 03:00
1
ShankSouljaBoi wrote:
Not able to figure out between A and B in 4. workout please guide

Hi ShankSouljaBoi,

B) show that Napoleon always operated on the basis of well-defined plans.

The passage says: "He achieved this feat in different ways according to the situation at hand." This means Napoleon had a plan before a battle but he adjusted the approach based on the situation. --> WRONG

A) show that, despite the variety of methods he used, Napoleon had a system underlying his decisions

The passage says: "... but the general principles behind his tactics were the same: keep the enemy at a disadvantage and maintain the initiative.". This means that although Napoleon acted based on the situation, he had principles - a system underlying the decisions.

Hope that you find it helpful!
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Re: Despite the tremendous technological advances of the modern era, schol  [#permalink]

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06 Oct 2018, 03:09
Susobhan wrote:
In question no 1 can anyone explain why not option c???

Hi Susobhan,

1) Which of the following, if true, would most weaken the author's statement that Napoleon's tactics were based on INNOVATION and the element of SURPRISE?

Firstly, as for CR weaken question, please notice that what we need to weaken is the INNOVATION and SURPRISE of Napoleon's strategies.

C) Further studies of Napoleon's battle plans show that he always planned every attack carefully and never strayed from those plans during battle.
Even if Napoleon prepared a plan, that plan can be innovative with many surprising factors. --> CANNOT WEAKEN.
This option is a tricky one because it weakens another statement mentioned in the passage "He achieved this feat in different ways according to the situation at hand."

E) Battle plans of a British general were found showing a planned attack on Napoleon's troops using a strategy previously thought to be one of Napoleon's design.
It seems that Napoleon did not prepare the plans/strategies but learned from others. Then, his strategies were not innovative. --> WEAKEN
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16 Oct 2018, 20:54
In option E, mentioning about other armies is an aberration. As soon as I read the question, I thought if Napoleon's plans didn't have innovation or element of surprise, the characteristic of plans must be weakened. I think option is E is kind of far-fetched. What if British armies used these? How does it counter Napoleon's plans to lack innovation or element of surprise?
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Re: Despite the tremendous technological advances of the modern era, schol  [#permalink]

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24 Oct 2018, 16:59
workout wrote:
sandman13 wrote:
workout

I need your help with Q1

Quote:
1) Which of the following, if true, would most weaken the author's statement that Napoleon's tactics were based on innovation and the element of surprise?

A) Napoleon's enemies often used his attack patterns when fighting against him after their allies had been defeated by Napoleon using those same tactics.
B) Napoleon was eventually defeated by the unexpected attack of several armies of countries he had previously occupied.
C) Further studies of Napoleon's battle plans show that he always planned every attack carefully and never strayed from those plans during battle.
D) Memoirs of Napoleon's enemies often reported that Napoleon's troops were unpredictable in battle and performed new and unexpected feats.
E) Battle plans of a British general were found showing a planned attack on Napoleon's troops using a strategy previously thought to be one of Napoleon's design.

I chose choice A. My reasoning was as follows: if opponents were able to identify patterns, which were repetitive, we can say that the plans were not innovative?
Why exactly is A wrong?

sandman13

Here's what I think between options A and E. The question asks about "most weaken"

Option A states Napoleon's enemies used Napoleon's attack patterns after their allies had been defeated by Napoleon using those same tactics. So Napoleon introduced these tactics. At least at that time, they were innovative. Just because the enemies found some patterns, saying the tactics were not innovative is arguable.

Option E, on the other hand, shows a possibility that Napoleon copied the tactics from the battle plans of a British general. If Napoleon had copied the tactics, we can surely say there is zero innovation. Hence option E most weakens the author's statement.

Hi Workout,
The British may have used the Napolean's tactics after he had used them.
Option C clearly shows that there remained no element of surprise hence C weakens more than E.
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Re: Despite the tremendous technological advances of the modern era, schol  [#permalink]

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21 Nov 2018, 06:44

Passage Map:

1) Study of Napolean's Tactics
3) Another reason for success: How his army functioned?
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Re: Despite the tremendous technological advances of the modern era, schol  [#permalink]

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19 Mar 2019, 19:02
1) Which of the following, if true, would most weaken the author's statement that Napoleon's tactics were based on innovation and the element of surprise?

A) Napoleon's enemies often used his attack patterns when fighting against him after their allies had been defeated by Napoleon using those same tactics.
B) Napoleon was eventually defeated by the unexpected attack of several armies of countries he had previously occupied.
C) Further studies of Napoleon's battle plans show that he always planned every attack carefully and never strayed from those plans during battle.
D) Memoirs of Napoleon's enemies often reported that Napoleon's troops were unpredictable in battle and performed new and unexpected feats.
E) Battle plans of a British general were found showing a planned attack on Napoleon's troops using a strategy previously thought to be one of Napoleon's design.

I mean, I don't see how the answer is so clearly E). In fact, answer choice A) makes a very strong case for Question 1. Napoleon's tactics were innovative and had an element of surprise. Answer choice A says that "his enemies have seen their allies been defeated by these tactics". In fact, they often use his very attack patterns to fight against him. This shows that there are cases where the element of surprise is not there, therefore weakening the statement.

Answer choice E) is pretty luke-warm in the the sense that there could be a possibility that Napoleon copied this British General, but we really don't know for sure who created the tactics first. Even if Napoleon copied the British general, it could still be true that those tactics were based off innovation and the element of surprise.

2) What may be inferred about other armies during Napoleon's time from the tactics Napoleon used to fight against them?

A) They lacked resourceful and creative generals.
B) Their weaponry was not as effective as that of Napoleon.
C) They never defeated Napoleon.
D) They were not self sufficient.
E) They were no different in structure from Napoleon's armies.

The OA D) is out of scope. The question asked specifically about "Napoleon's tactics used to fight" against his enemies. Yes the final paragraph mentions his army living off the land, but this has nothing to do with the tactics used to fight his enemies (mentioned in the earlier paragraphs). Eliminate B & C as they are quite extreme. E can't be inferred with what is given. That leaves us with A). If Napoleon was able to outsmart his enemies and achieve great success using his fighting tactics, it is reasonable to infer that his enemies and other armies (at least those that lost) were unable to find away to outsmart him/dominate the way that he did. A finds a way to say that.

Can someone please break these questions down??
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21 Oct 2019, 21:26
Quote:
1) Which of the following, if true, would most weaken the author's statement that Napoleon's tactics were based on innovation and the element of surprise?

A) Napoleon's enemies often used his attack patterns when fighting against him after their allies had been defeated by Napoleon using those same tactics.
B) Napoleon was eventually defeated by the unexpected attack of several armies of countries he had previously occupied.
C) Further studies of Napoleon's battle plans show that he always planned every attack carefully and never strayed from those plans during battle.
D) Memoirs of Napoleon's enemies often reported that Napoleon's troops were unpredictable in battle and performed new and unexpected feats.
E) Battle plans of a British general were found showing a planned attack on Napoleon's troops using a strategy previously thought to be one of Napoleon's design.

We will be left with option C and E.
Option C:
C) Further studies of Napoleon's battle plans show that he always planned every attack carefully and never strayed from those plans during battle.
we have to weaken this statement.
Napoleon's tactics were based on innovation and the element of surprise
But option c is saying that he always planned(May be innovative plans)every attack carefully and never stayed from those( innovative ) plans during battle.
we don't know that whether they are copied from someone or they are his own plans.

Quote:
E) Battle plans of a British general were found showing a planned attack on Napoleon's troops using a strategy previously thought to be one of Napoleon's design

Option D: clearly says that that strategy was previously used by some British general on Napolean's troops and that weakens the above statement.
Compare it to c.
E strongly weakens the statement.
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19 Jan 2020, 22:53
akshita957 wrote:
3) Which of the following is stated in the passage as Napoleon's goal in warfare?

A) obtaining wealth and power
B) surprising the enemy
C) destroying most of the enemy's troops
D) dominating all of continental Europe
E) maintaining the initiative

I chose ans E as that is explicitly mentioned in para 1. Please advise why this is incorrect?

Destroying troops was the ultimate aim which was achieved through maintaining initiative.
Hence E is wrong

Posted from my mobile device
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20 Jan 2020, 18:56
need explanation for Q1 and Q2.
There are no satisfactory answers above.

In Q1 option E, we are not sure who copied whose tactics.
In Q2 option A seems better choice compared with all.

Kindly help.
Re: Despite the tremendous technological advances of the modern era, schol   [#permalink] 20 Jan 2020, 18:56
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