View Single Post
Old 01-18-2012, 12:32 AM   #1238
Local curmudgeon
machievelli's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Las Vegas Nevada
Posts: 2,874
Current Game: Dungeonseige series
10 year veteran!  Hot Topic Starter  Veteran Fan Fic Author  Helpful! 
So many things you don't understand...

All right everyone Military and Political History 102 is in session. If history bores you but you expect to write well here, sit down anyway. Starting from the top...

Not all Jedi have gone with the << blue army >>. Half of them have gone and the other half stay with the republic. (Later) So here there is no Just cause. There are just different opinions..

Reply; when you boil down the initial Jedi/Sith schism, what you have is one group trying to keep the pins in when it comes to society, and another trying to reinvent it in their own image. Considering the worlds you have seen in Star Wars, and the political entities described in the movies games and EU, this war your describe would be an ongoing thing pretty much constantly. Whatever society you are a part of, there are those who see it as weak will always try to tear it down. As for 'just cause' except for the Mandalorian Wars when has there been such split amongst the Jedi about what is right and wrong?

In my own KOTOR excerpts (Which has the entire work) I pointed out that the reason the Jedi went to war against that authority was that their teachers had pressed over and over that the Jedi's first duty was to protect the Republic. Yet when the war started they were too busy paying attention to what might happen if they intervened; something not admitted until the Exile is told this in TSL.

Reply to Later: The problem with politics is everything is colored by opinion. The modern US government is a perfect example; two main political parties who differ across the board fighting over who will run the country for the last 150 odd years. The last decent president we had was Theodore Roosevelt, and if I wanted to go back before the modern era the next good one was Lincoln.

The entire galaxy is divided because there are 2 opinions:

1) Some poor men fight against the rich corrupt politicians, in order to get their freedom.

2) Some peasants did a revolution and they now want to kill, rape, steal and destroy democracy.

Reply: That is a definition of revolution, and revolutions are always messy. In them you always end up with that small percentage that just enjoys the destruction.

First, let us clarify; when you use the word peasant, I picture the serfs under Feudal Europe, people who have no rights under their society who rebel because they have no hope. There is no modern equivalent unless you consider the lower echelon workers who don't need an education to do their jobs. Lower level flunkies in other words. Such is rare in modern American society, since a minimum of education is needed in any job, and to get a better job, only a better degree of education is needed. After all, there are only so many jobs on that level. But without an education they can not expand into the upper portions of their society. So whether it is five hundred or five billion, they are a local problem.

Using your measure Luke Skywalker is not[ a peasant whereas using my meter he is.

EDIT: The jedi who have joined the << blue army >> are rebels against the authority of the jedi council, so the jedi council wants to eliminate them.

Reply: Understood. But having them split down the middle is unlikely. From what I have seen of the governments portrayed the Jedi would have been split from the start of the Republic then again almost every time a new planet joins it. The laws against slavery alongside a legal ban on them is just the first possible point where the Jedi might have split.


Historically there are only three to use; The third Servile war, led by Spartacus, the French Revolution, specifically the storming of Versailles, and finally the 1917 October Revolution.

Even at the height of his fame, Spartacus never had much more that 70,000 under his banner.

When the peasant women of Paris marched on Versailles their own history states 'thousands' made that march, not millions, though throughout the Kingdom I am willing to bet perhaps 5 million plus were also rioting. After all the population of Paris circa 1793 was just under 2 million.

Now the real kicker; when the October Revolution broke out in 1917, according to their own history the entire city of Moscow rose in revolt against the Tzar. Yet even then the city of Moscow was a lot smaller than five million. Again Nationwide there were perhaps 5+ million that did so.

So, no one had gathered a 'peasant' army of 5 million so far. The numbers and the weapons bothered me, and here is why:

Revolutions, and schisms such as you portray would not happen to this depth or be unnoticed before they explode. Even in a planetary disagreement there are all sorts of warning signs. The Bolsheviks for example did not just rise from the ground like the teeth of the Hydra in the myth of Jason and the Argonauts; there was several decades of low level problems within Russian society pretty much as you described before the October Revolution. As much as the old Communist party wanted to claim all of the right for their side and that the 'people' had joined the class struggle they were merely members of a coalition when that occurred. It took six months of backbiting between the various factions before the Communists seized power in May of 1918. On the galactic level it would be even more noticeable.

France had also suffered decades of misrule before the Revolution. And they didn't call the rebellion by Spartacus the 3rd Servile rebellion for nothing. It was merely the one with some training in combat that the others did not have which meant a better chance at success.

Now, the political section is done, going on to merely military matters


If you took every Indian west of the Mississippi in 1976, an estimate of perhaps 12 million would be accurate. However you have to remember that in most primitive societies a third, in this case, about 4 million are children not considered adult, or the aged. Of the remainder half (Another 4 million) are women, and only the last portion, another 4 million are men (Or boys between 13 and 18, warriors in their own society) able to fight. Let us use these people as an example.

Before you now point at at least a portion of your numbers, a lot of those tribes (Nez Perce, Cherokee, Zuni, Navaho, Morongo, Modoc, Chinook and Hopi were peaceful unless pushed to belligerence. There are more than enough tribes from Yaqui to Apache to Comanche to Sioux to Cheyenne to Arapahoe to make up for the others.

So let us accept that the belligerent tribes equal the 5 million you postulate. And this occurs:

After the battle of the Little Big Horn (September 1976) all of them react to a divine revelation given to Sitting Bull (No joke;almost a year before the battle, Sitting Bull had a vision that many soldiers would attack them and die, a perfect prelude to the battle, right?) And in this case all of those tribes are asked to send their warriors to destroy Kansas City Missouri, the Gateway to the West.

Fine in the Old West where someone has to spot the approaching units and get that information to a telegraph. Small parties can still slip through even modern sensor technology to raid, but these are scattered over 5 million square kilometers, and it would take the better part of a month for all of them to reach their target, even if we put every man on a horse. There is no way that they could assemble without being noticed.

Now shift to modern day, and see this problem:


Your men are armed with wooden swords, you enemy is armed with everything the modern world has to offer in the way of destruction and detection. Instead of telegraph, which is a point to point communications system easily to disable as you pass through, you have radio and even satellite radio that can reach hundreds of kilometers to report your progress. They have vehicles faster than your horses even over rough terrain which means a military unit can find your columns and scout them in relative safety whether it's by satellite, drone aircraft, helicopter or just men in Hummvees. Even if you give them vehicles on par with the army the enemy still has those recon drones and helicopters to set down teams, or merely use their Longbow variant helicopters to use laser target designators to pick and choose targets for everything from JDAM to smart bombs to Maverick missiles. The drones themselves have this capability as well.

Here at first they would not be using any 'army' weapons because they really don't need them yet. Two aircraft carriers is all they need, because one in the Pacific off Los Angeles, the other off the Gulf Coast near Mobile Alabama can strike that far inland and bomb you into scrap without even being scratched. Even without the carriers, the Air Force could do the same, and because their bases are closer, make even more strikes with more aircraft. One element of B52s (two) with the same tonnage of bombs as a wing of B17s(72) could devastate your separate force in one strike or the entire force if they waited until they formed up. One squadron of Warthogs with almost twice the payload of those two aircraft could do the same without needing such a huge target. Also, these resources are far enough away from the battle area that your cutting the local supply lines will not affect them.

If they waited until your men are within reach of just the 'army' (200 kilometers) you would have helicopters and shorter ranged strike aircraft pounding them; with artillery joining in when you reach 20 kilometers, and long range rifle and machine gun fire when they reach 2 kilometers. This is even before your defensive infantry force has to fire a shot.

And the enemy you face isn't armed with our piddling display of force. They have a technology about two centuries in advance of our own.

So just forming them all together would be impossible.


Without transport (In the case of your blue army one hell of a lot of it) it remains a local problem on the continental let alone planetary scale, even though you claim they have taken over several planets. If a 5 million man army armed with swords was ravaging the Chinese country side we here in the US would not be alarmed; after all, that country has a four hundred million plus man army with much more modern weapons to boot.

It took almost three years for the Allies to build up enough manpower and supplies (Stated in The Longest Day as 6,000 transports alone) to support the Normandy Invasion and not only a fleet of transports but another just of warships to protect it when they landed the first 170,000 troops. That was across less than 100 kiulometers of sea, not several light years.

Yet such a massive fleet (You would have to quadruple it to move even part of a million men; figure 100,000 transports of the size used in TESB for the full load) requires things a peasant army would not have; trained pilots, trained naval personnel for both transports and warships, and all of the supporting personnel. Your army would be in the position some primitives faced during the Age of Exploration; seizing a sailing vessel of that time, and being unable to make it work.

Oh, I'll admit that terrorizing enough of the people that aren't on your side could get it started, but one signal to the system you intend to invade would prepare them for your attack. Of course such a buildup would be noticed by any neighbors unless they are blind drunk.

Let's use this example; your supposed peasant revolt starts on Taris before the KOTOR game. The first thing the government there is going to do is send ships to all the neighbor planets to let them know it's happening. Except for that, nothing else is done except trying to quell the rebellion on that local level. Most of the governments contacted do nothing, but shipping companies will start refusing shipments there. Then the ones that are still supplying goods will notice that their ships aren't going on to their next destination. The shippers send another ship, this time just to find out what happened to the first ship, but these don't come back either. By this time it appears the revolt is over, and you just have a new government in charge, but that doesn't explain where your ships went. All told less than two months have passed. So they send another ship to speak to the new regime, and it doesn't come back.

At this point, the shippers contact the neighboring planets and competing shippers located there to find that suddenly Taris has become a black hole or like a roach motel. Ships go in, but they don't go out. At this point you have only captured a handful of ships, perhaps a couple of dozen. Assuming the best of luck you have perhaps a hundred ships all told.

Considering how businesses would have to operate in the wilder regions of space, some of them would have to have warships of their own; even armed merchantmen, including ships designed for scouting in hostile regions. Any armed merchantmen would have come in expecting trouble, so it is unlikely you captured many of them. If you expect trouble you cannot be boarded in a surprise ambush. The gun mounted on the Millennium Falcon that we didn't see until TESB was an anti-boarding device, just like the similar gun on the Ebon Hawk.

Some of the companies begin sending in scouts. These report that a few ships are still going in, but once they land are not being allowed to leave. The companies now contact any known or supposed smugglers, including criminal organizations. While not admitting that they are illegal, these have also been losing ships, and would have become alarmed enough to share that information, for a price. At this point the companies contact the Republic itself. Someone on Taris is seizing your vessels, but not even replying as to why because any ship you send in to contact them never leaves.

If you look at it's structure, the Republic in Star Wars is best described as what the United States would have been when the original Articles of Confederation were used; member states that are still free agencies that interact through trade on their own with Federal government there only as a trade arbiter that collects it's revenues from tariffs. Such a government has no real authority except in that regard. During our time under such a government the only policing agencies on the Federal government level was the Revenue agents of the treasury department, and the Coast Guard. Our own experiment with such a government collapsed within three years to become the Federal system we know now.

So now a ship from the republic goes, with a specific timetable; get down, find out what the hell is happening, and return immediately. It fails to return. At this point the Republic issues a warning sent to all companies that whatever is happening politically on Taris, no ships are to go there. At the same a few, perhaps six ships from the Republic's Trade Administration arrive, and picket the planet. They do not land or approach the planet. Instead they are placed to watch for anyone leaving or arriving, and warns any approaching of the danger. What little trickle of ships are still going there stops. Now you move to seize these pickets.

Revenue Cutter A sees a ship approaching from the planet. It reports to the others, who also report that ships are approaching them. Worst case, they intend to grab these ships. One is chosen to accept this, and approaches to inspect the ship it faces while the others avoid contact, after all, there are a few possible scenarios where this is necessary, but these men are not stupid.

Cutter A reports they are docking with the ship, though more likely they would send a shuttle with an armed boarding party. Let's assume this commander at least is stupid. He docks, and there is no follow up message. The others, still dodging their pursuers sees the revenue cutter now heading for Taris. At least one of the cutters now hypers out to report that it definitely enemy action. Whoever is in charge of the picket now turns not to rendezvous, but with orders to drive the now enemy ships away, or destroy them.

All of the above takes about four to six months, but when it does stop you have captured less than a thousand ships. You are still far short of transporting your army, and the only way to get more is to send ships out to hopefully capture more. But every ship that did not return has already been reported to the various insuring agencies. The criminal and smuggling organization have already done so with their ships, so it would be very difficult to merely slip out, grab some ships, and slip back in with them. Even criminals are now giving Taris a wide berth.

If any of the missing ships succeeds in escaping the patrol and reaching another system it will be noticed before you have time to steal very many ships because a group of people who have no knowledge of ships and transport coming off one ship, then snagging another one to transport them to oh say Corellia that fails to arrive would be noticed. Maybe not immediately, but the cutters, now forming not a screening action but a full blown blockade will definitely detect the ships coming in. They would begin destroying or capturing them, at the same time notifying planets these ships came from, and then every port anywhere in the Republic. With the best of luck you might get an additional thousand ships this way. But you now face a blockade.

So technically you have a stalemate; transport for only about 2% of your revolutionary army, and no way to get more. The picket grow to become a full blockade which will remain until things normalize. Your Army is trapped on one planet and there things go from bad to worse.

Let's look at history here under such a 'peasant' administration. Rhodesia was a section of British controlled land until 1965 when it unilaterally declared itself free of the British Empire. During the next 14 years the nation struggled not only with the black majority, but also with the UN who refused to recognize their independence. South Africa refused to accept it primarily because Rhodesia was trying to find a workable government giving the majority at least an introduction to self rule that would not turn out as badly as the rest of the continent had. In Rhodesia the first election where black voters were allowed limited the franchise, allowing only blacks of a certain educational level to vote. But this was not enough.

As much as 'freeing them from oppression' had been a nice idea, it had turned out badly elsewhere. Except for the oil states in the north (Where the governments had been controlled but not ruled by their foreign customers) and the south (Where South Africa had declared Apartheid and Rhodesia was trying only for a transitional administrative role with eventual majority rule) all of the other newly formed governments immediately fell into two categories; bloody rebellions that in some nations still go on, or strong man governments where there was exactly one election, the president then declaring himself President for life, and eliminated their opponents, sometimes down to the children of those men if they had not already fled.

In Rhodesia, with the world ignoring their independence unless majority rule was allowed, Prime Minister Ian Smith at the demand of the UN led by the United States began to move to full majority rule. The government sat down with several leaders of the resistance including Robert Mugabe. I remember the press coverage of the events that followed; I especially remember an on camera quote from Mugabe. When a reporter asked how the 'give and take' was going Mugabe replied; 'There will be no more give and take, only take'.

The negotiations ended with majority rule after the new government promised not to disenfranchise the white citizens, but less than two years later all properties and lands owned by white were seized, and most of the white population was expelled. Their properties, including factories were handed over to 'worthy black citizens', mainly supporter of various politicos. Unfortunately, these 'worthy' recipients had no knowledge of how the companies they now owned and controlled operated. Picture the local phone company handed over to someone whose experience is that he worked not as a lineman, not as an engineer, but as a clerk in the phone company office. Most of the engineers, white to a man, have been forcibly evicted, so when it begins to break down, you do not have people to fix it, not even to attempt to maintain it because while the linemen are probably all black, they don't understand the working of the main switching machinery. Putting a gun to the head of your last White engineer will not fix this problem whether you pull the trigger or not.

As it stands, Rhodesia's economy is among the worst in all of Africa to this day and when things break down, the government literally had to hire people from other countries to fix them until enough of their people learned how to do it themselves. That is still an ongoing problem today.


As Napoleon said, an army moves on it's stomach. Or as a more modern pundit said, 'Captains learn tactics, Generals learn strategy. Excellent generals learn logistics'.

BBB is military slang for what is needed to keep an army going; Beans, Bullets, and Black oil, or fuel.

So let's now assume your 'blue army' does finally get enough ships to transport it from Taris to another world, say Desevro. You load up your army, especially their supplies. This (using your numbers, and using the Roman army supply system) is 5,000 tons of food per day.

That was arrived at by using the Roman army diet. Each man was furnished with a pint (456 gm) of grains, a pound of meat, fish poultry or cheese (456gm) two ounces of olive oil (60 ml) and eight ounces of wine (250ml) per day. Rounding down it is one kilogram of rations per man per day multiplied by five million coming to five million kilograms or 5 kilotons.

In this at least, your army is lucky, since all they have to supply is food. A modern army has to supply a lot more. The winner for most supplies needed to maintain the fighting force is the US, which supplies 55 kilos per man per day. A guerrilla force like the Taliban still needs 5 kilos a day in the field.

As for foraging, (which I know you will suggest) ain't gonna happen. If the Republic commander on the ground has the brains to pour water out of his own boots, his men are going to be building fortifications even if it's merely blocking roads and setting his troops in buildings while the civilians still inside are scurrying around gathering every scrap of food in your target area and moving it inside. Then they are going to blow up every building outside their perimeter to deny you shelter. Before your army is even on the ground you will be facing what the French did in 1812 and the Russians did in 1942. Scorched Earth.

Such a force would have to attack all at once to assure success, and that alone would cause massive casualties for your troops. While you are still approaching the navy will be destroying every ship they can, and your forces, even with warships of your own will not be able to stop this, merely limit it. This is because the navy you're facing isn't a bunch of men with weapons at their throats, so everything will be done efficiently, not halfheartedly. All you would need is one man on each warship in a position to delay or stop your response, which is pretty much any crewman you have suborned, to totally cripple your fleet before you even land. If just a dozen pilots merely set the navicomputer of their own ships to a different system you would be out 24,000 troops going to the wrong place. Sure you could then kill the men who did so, but that isn't going to get you back to where you want to go.

That is only the tip of the sabotage iceberg. If a gunnery officer ordered the computer to do a full diagnostic of the weapons system, that would tie up the weapons of those ships for a couple of hours. The same could be done by crashing the computers aboard any ship, which would require technical expertise to fix that none of your men can supply.

Read the book The Honor of the Queen by David Weber to see what I mean. In one chapter a group of religious fanatics grab a modern warship in that universe. Knowing it could happen, the Captain of that ship had set up a fail safe to at least interfere with their plans, and it takes their half trained crew of about 1200 and the 300 odd regular crewman they had captured two days to get everything up and running again. They have an advantage you do not. The fanatics have at least some training to fall back on.


Unless your army are either religious zealots or completely mind controlled, arming them with just swords of any type is foolish. That is what I infer by their weapons, not their tactics.

Every primitive tribesman who has faced a more modern weapon, be it a bow, musket, rifle, repeating rifle, or machine gun has only one thought on his mind; the same thought an American teenager has when he sees a muscle car slide by them:

I want that!

The English were so impressed by the Welsh longbow that they made their own copy of it. Natives in every part of the world where they faced guns quickly bought stole or took them off of dead bodies. One author commented about the African tribes that a man would grab a repeating rifle off a body, fire it until he ran out of ammunition, then throw it away since they did not have the knowledge and technology to manufacture more. But nowhere did they ignore them. Yet to take control of a planet with such weapons in abundance, yet set off for another world where they will face the same suggests mania whether religious or by mind control has to be implied.

Historically there are only two battles I can think of off the top of my head where a poorly armed native force defeated a technologically superior one. They are the Battle of the Little Bog Horn and the Battle of Isandlwana the first in June of 1876 the second in January 1879.

In each case the natives had help from their enemies, mainly their incompetence or hubris. At Custer's Last Stand you had 647 men armed with single shot Trapdoor Springfield model 1873 rifles against about 2 thousand hostiles armed mainly with bows, but with a few dozen armed with Henry and Spencer repeating rifles.

I know the numbers would suggest an easy victory, but consider the following:

1: The Army had estimated their opposition as only about 800 braves. Custer believed that until the day before the battle, when his chief scout told him they faced between 1500 and 2500.

2: Custer was leading less than 20% of the force; another of 1000 men led by General Crook was two days away as was another thousand odd under Colonel Gibbons and another force led by Brigadier General Terry. When his scouts reported that the natives had found his force, he decided he had enough men for the job, since he intended to screen his troops using the Indian noncombatants and force them to keep cover and stay where they were until the other columns could arrive. Before this the Natives would disperse, so standing orders for the Army was to make them stand and fight.

3: Custer's regiment had both cannon and several gatling guns on their equipment lists, but Custer had left them behind because they would slow his men down. Unlike the other forces that could have been there, Custer led the only all cavalry force, the others had infantry cannon and gatlings. If the Natives simply dispersed, they would be able to outrun everyone else.

4: Due to budget restraints, the weapons used by the 7th as mentioned was the Trapdoor Springfield, However there had been reports from the field that if you fired them too often, the copper cartridges would jam in the breech. Since this rifle did not have a ramrod, you would have to pry the jammed cartridge out with a knife; not the best thing to happen in the middle of a serious fight. Brass cartridges, that would not have this happen, had been determined five years previously to be 'too expensive'.

A brief aside; the author of the Trapdoor Springfield played a hand in making sure troops during the War Between the States had limited access to more modern weapons, That man was James Wolfe Ripley. As Master of the Ordinance for the Union Army he turned away Gatling and Agar who had developed machine guns, forcing generals to purchase them out of their own pockets. When ordered by Lincoln to examine the Rafael repeater, what John Ericsson called the most efficient weapon of it's type, Ripley bought four of them, sent them to the Harper's Ferry arsenal, and pretty much ignored them from then on.

He refused the Henry rifle because it would 'make it easier for the infantry to waste ammunition' and only accepted the issuing of the Spencer because Lincoln ordered it. Both the Henry and the Spencer did not jam as easily as the Springfield so the Indians with them actually had superior weapons. If a trooper at the Little Bighorn had one of these rifles instead, it was because he had bought it himself.

5: Custer divided his force into three units under himself, Major Reno and Captain Benteen. Custer himself led 210 men. Since none of them survived, what actually occurred during the battle on Last Stand Hill is conjecture except that Reno and his men on Reno hill heard volley fire, a signal used in desperate circumstance meaning 'we need ammunition' at 4:30. But Reno along with most of the remaining force were almost 4 kilometers to the south. Captain Thomas Weir did approach close enough to see the Natives killing the wounded at around 5 PM. It wasn't until two days later when General Terry arrived that any other witness saw the scene.

In the Battle of Isandlwana 22,000 Zulus under Cetshwayo confronted the supply base of the 24 Regiment, protected by Lieutenant-Colonel Henry Burmester Pulleine commanding 1350 troops, both white and colored levies, along with an undetermined number of civilian drovers.

Again, hubris came into play;

1: Lord Chelmsford over all commander of the invasion of Zululand attacked at harvest time, assuming the Zulus would be dispersed into easily defeated tribal units. However the time he picked was when every Zulu warrior would go to the primary village of Ulundi. Think of the National Guard during the two weeks of training they do, not the one weekend a month.

2: When the British reached Isandlwana they did not follow procedure. It was standard practice to entrench, and laager the wagons (Think of a wagon train under Indian Attack from the movies) Chelmsford had decided it was not needed, since they faced poorly armed (True) and poorly led (So not true) natives.

3: A more senior officer, Colonel Anthony Dumford arrived, which would have caused problems because he was senior to Pulleine, but this officer described as the most experienced officer in the campaign ignored the deficiencies in the defense. Before the battle actually styarted he led men out to face the left horn of the Zulu advance (Some of the best men the Zulus had) and actually stopped it until his men ran out of ammunition.

4: The Martini Henry cartridges used at the battle were a rolled brass foil that had the same problem the Springfield had; the thin foil warped under heat if the weapon was fired constantly, as did occur. If you have watched the Movie Zulu, they were using the cartridges that later replaced the ones used at the time.

5: A chance occurrence, a solar eclipse occurred at 2:29 PM, allowing the poorly armed natives to close within killing distance. After all, a rifle can kill from a distance, but only if you can see your target.

Most of the civilans and five officers in the green 'Patrol' uniforms survived. Primarily because Cetshwayo had said to kill the 'red' soldiers, but spare the 'black coated' men. In other words, leave the civilians alone. Almost 400 men survived.

6: During the court on inquiry into the battle, surviving soldiers reported that the quartermaster officer was refusing to issue ammunition without a letter or direct order from an officer. In a macabre amusing instance, one of the artillerymen cold-cocked the idiotic officer. When questioned during the inquiry, he apologized, not for striking the officer, but for breaking the rammer of his cannon when he did.

The mutiny of what sounds like one division of troops was ill-timed, and would be a reason to be worried, but not for the amount of panic shown. A division (10-17,000 men) would be rolled over easily by because you only need to detach about 60 to 80,000 troops to do so.

You are right. But they were panicked because this division cut them from their supplies, and even a very good trained army without supplies and firepower can be easily destroyed by 2,000,000 men with wooden swords.

Reply: True. However my comments were based on two things; first, 'crap' happening is anticipated by any good military commander. Not that some of your own troops might suddenly change sides, but that supplies might be cut off. There is an old military axiom; don't plan for what you want the enemy to do, plan for what he might do that would hurt you the most. So there would have been contigency plans in place for everything from a possible mutiny down to a sudden thrust breaking through to cut your supply line and even to the ridiculous, mutant radioactive Gerbils eating them.


2: As Napoleon said 'The moral is to the physical as three to one'. In other words, a besieged garrison with high morale will fight on even when hopelessly outnumbered. Bastogne during the Battle of the Bulge is a prime example. Another is the old hoary joke we Texans get upset at; that if there had been a back door in the Alamo, Texas would still be Mexican. If any of the three co-commanders At the Alamo had shown even the slightest hesitation, that would have been true.

Yet at the attack, no matter how high your morale, it can be broken by sudden brutal losses. Even well trained armed and led troops tend to break off their attack when a third or more of their number have been killed in the last minute or so. With the weapons you have given your army, they have to resort to a a Banzai charge human wave attack, which stopped being chosen method except for fanatics and idiot officer long before the attacks of that pattern in Korea because all it does is cause massive losses for little or no gain. Instead of an example here, just watch the first battle shown in the movie Enemy at the Gates. You have about a hundred troops half of them issued rifles, and half of them given only a couple of stripper clips of ammo. The officer who is ordering, but not leading the charge shouts 'charge the enemy. When the man with the rifle is killed, pick up the rifle and continue to advance!'.

What occurs next can't be graced with the term battle, it was a one sided slaughter. Those few who tried to flee were killed by the officer who ordered the attack and men armed with machine guns. You could try the same tactic, but since the men trying to stop them are armed with equivalent weapons, this fight would not be so one sided.

In real battles, units are considered impaired when the loss ratio reaches 30%. Such units are pulled off the line if possible, and fresh troops sent in. But sending wave after wave at the enemy will deplete their ammunition but deplete your force more rapidly. If you assume only bolt action rifles against such a charge, remember that the man shooting at you can fire 5 aimed shots in the time it takes you to run 100 meters. If they have auto loading rifles (The M1 Garand) they can fire ten, and a machine gun (250[.50 caliber]-1,400 [German MG42]rounds per minute) can empty a 50 round box in the same time. The few times your plan succeeds ends up with perhaps fifty to a hundred survivors who are badly shaken by their survival. These would be easy to wip out by any troops behind the front line, and with a quarter million troops inside the perimeter, they would have ready response teams.

Also, you have to remember that anyone even remotely close to the front just watched a thousand men reduced to either the survivors above, or worm food. They are not going to be willing to do the same thing. Their morale has already hit bottom just seeing what has happened. Even if you did, they get to see the bodies they have to clamber over to make the same charge.

Part One of my reply

'To argue with those who have renounced the use and authority of reason is as futile as to administer medicine to the dead.' Now who said that?

From the one who brought you;
What we die for...
KOTOR excerpts
Star Wars: The Beginning
Star Wars: Republic Dawn
Return From Exile
machievelli is offline   you may: quote & reply,