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A major problem is that even a limited invasion would require massive forces, including two full South Korean corps. And there is reason to question whether South Korea could sustain the effort. "In our wargames, it was not unusual for the equivalent of a corps to be destroyed in one week's fighting to achieve a single penetration, translating to tens of thousands of casualties," RAND noted.

Reference: War Games Prove Why America Cannot Afford A Second Korean War


I'd like to know what "(in order) to achieve a single penetration" modifies.

The forms of "in order to do something" are used as adverbs, modifying a verb phrase. "(in order) to achieve a single penetration" is being used to modify the noun "fighting", and I think that it is not correct because it should be used to modify a verb phrase.

I'd like to know where I'm wrong.

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    penetrate the enemy lines; it is not modifying it; it is explaining its purpose.
    – Lambie
    Commented Feb 7, 2022 at 22:57

1 Answer 1

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In this case, the author is saying that a corps would be destroyed in order to achieve a single penetration (of enemy lines). In other words, in order to achieve a penetration, a corps was sacrificed. I’m not sure if that fully answers your question or not.

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    I think that this is correct. To be clearer, "to achieve a single penetration" would modify the verb phrase "be destroyed", answering the question "why" or "for what purpose". Commented Feb 8, 2022 at 1:59

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