Analyzing the effects of Urban combat on daily casualty rates
Buttrey, Samuel E.
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This study explores whether the attacker's daily casualty rate (DCR) changes according to the terrain. The data set is a part of a larger database, Division Level Engagement Database from the Dupuy Institute. There are data on 253 battles, 96 of which occurred in urban areas. All the engagements are selected from European Theater of Operation (ETO) in World War II. The available data set contains measurements about the battles like initial strengths, daily casualties, terrain, front width, linear density, attacker's and defender's country, and armor losses. Hypothesis tests are used to find if the DCR is different in urban operations. A linear regression model is constructed to predict outcomes of similar engagements and to see the effect of each variable. It is concluded that the attacker's daily casualty rate is, on average, lower in urban operations. Terrain and force ratio are the most effective drivers of the daily casualty rate. In addition, it is seen that allied forces (U.S., U.K. and Canada) had a different approach to Military Operations on Urban Terrain than Soviet and German forces. The Allies used extensive combat power in urban operations.
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