J. F. C. Fuller

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Major-General John Frederick Charles Fuller, CB, CBE, DSO (1 September 1878 – 10 February 1966) was a British Army officer, military historian and strategist, notable as an early theorist of modern armoured warfare, including categorising principles of warfare. He was also the inventor of "artificial moonlight".

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Biography

Fuller was born in 1878, in Chichester, West Sussex, England. After moving to Lausanne with his parents as a boy, he returned to England at the age of 11 without them; three years later, at "the somewhat advanced age of 14," he began attending Malvern College[1] and, later, Royal Military Academy Sandhurst from 1897 to 1898. He was commissioned into the 1st Battalion of the Oxfordshire Light Infantry (the old 43rd), and served in South Africa from 1899 to 1902. In the spring of 1904, Fuller was sent with his unit to India, where he contracted enteric fever in autumn of 1905; he returned to England the next year on sick-leave, where he met the woman he married in December 1906.[2] Instead of returning to India, he was reassigned to units in England, serving as an adjutant to the 2nd South Middlesex Volunteers (amalgamated into the 7th Middlesex during the Haldane Reforms) and helping form the 10th Middlesex, until he was accepted into the Staff College at Camberley in 1913 (starting work there in January 1914).

During World War I, he was a staff officer with the Home Forces and with 7 Corps in France, and from 1916 in the Headquarters of the Machine-Gun Corps' Heavy Branch which was later to become the Tank Corps. He planned the tank attack at Cambrai in 1917 and the tank operations for the autumn offensives of 1918. His Plan 1919 for a fully mechanised army was never implemented in his lifetime, and after 1918 he held various leading positions, notably as a commander of an experimental brigade at Aldershot.

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