On page 12 of The First World War, Hew Strachan writes, in 1889 the annual contingent of conscripts was set at 135,670 men. This fixed quota meant that the size of the joint Austro-Hungarian army did not grow in step with the expansion of the population or with the increase in size of other armies. But not until 1912 did Hungary approve a new army law, which permitted an addition of 42,000 men. It was too little too late: the lost years could not be made up. The trained reservists available to other powers in 1914, discharged conscripts who ranged in age from their early twenties up to forty, were simply not there in Austria-Hungary's case. Its field army was half the size of France's or Germany's. Nor had it compensated for its lack of men with firepower: each division had forty-two field guns compared with fifty-four in a German divisions, and the good designs to be found among some of the heavier pieces had not been converted to mass production. . . ." Comment: Just the other day I read Rick Atkinson's account of the poor American army. It was in the same fix that Strachan describes the Austrian army being in, but I suppose it would have required the Americans to lose before someone like Strachan would write as he does about the Austrians. Americans were called up or enlisted and given a few weeks of training and were sent off to fight. Their equipment was inadequate. Their tanks didn't compare to enemy tanks. Their basic training wasn't enough to match the Germans but they got OJT and caught up. Why couldn't the Austrians have done that?