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Respectfully Quoted: A Dictionary of Quotations. 1989.

NUMBER: 2070
AUTHOR: Dwight David Eisenhower (1890–1969)
QUOTATION: There are two kinds of mines; one is the personnel mine and the other is the vehicular mine. When we come to a mine field our infantry attacks exactly as if it were not there. The losses we get from personnel mines we consider only equal to those we would have gotten from machine guns and artillery if the Germans had chosen to defend that particular area with strong bodies of troops instead of with mine fields. The attacking infantry does not set off the vehicular mines, so after they have penetrated to the far side of the field they form a bridgehead, after which the engineers come up and dig out channels through which our vehicles can go.
ATTRIBUTION: GEORGY K. ZHUKOV.—Dwight D. Eisenhower attributes this statement to the Russian marshal in Crusade in Europe, pp. 467–68 (1948), and adds, “I had a vivid picture of what would happen to any American or British commander if he pursued such tactics, and I had an even more vivid picture of what the men in any one of our divisions would have had to say about the matter had we attempted to make such a practice a part of our tactical doctrine. Americans assess the cost of war in terms of human lives, the Russians in the over-all drain on the nation.”
SUBJECTS: World War II (1939–1945)