A METT-TC, Combined Arms, and Battlespace Analysis of one of the least expected defeats and miraculous victories in military history.
By Mark D, Harris
The military experiences of the British Empire during the reign of Victoria are filled with lessons for modern day soldiers. Isandlwana was one of the most humiliating defeats in the history of British arms, and Rorke’s Drift, occurring on the same day, only a few miles from Isandlwana and against the same enemy, was one of the most amazing victories. Queen Victoria awarded eleven Victoria Crosses (VC), the highest honor in the British Army. It was the most to VCs awarded to members of any regiment in a single action in British history.
The carnage and crucible of WW1 didn’t end in 1918, but the gruesome genocide continued. The Greeks and Turks fought for centuries before then, and have continued since. No wonder.
By Mark D. Harris
World War I had been a catastrophe for the Ottoman Empire. Siding with the Central Powers, including Germany, Austria-Hungary, and Bulgaria, Sultan Mehmed V Rashād (The True Path Follower) fought the Serbians, Rumanians, Russians, British, French, Arabs, and others. The Turks enjoyed some early successes, notably at Gallipoli (1915) and Kut (1916). Such victories emboldened radicals in the government to attack their traditional enemies, the Armenians, and in this genocide 1.5 million Armenian Christians perished. The tide of war turned against the Ottomans, as it did against all of the Central Powers, and ultimately the strategically encircled Turks lost their empire and their political system. An estimated 5 million Turks died, the sultanate ceased to exist, and Mustafa Kemal, later known as the Father of the Turks (Ataturk), rose to prominence.
In many ways a forgotten war, the War of 1812 was America’s first test as a nation. Had it ended differently, we might have been colonies again.
Reenactors and Living Historians in 2013 reveled in the 150th anniversary of Chancellorsville, Gettysburg, and Vicksburg, some of the most monumental battles of the American Civil War. Thousands of participants, tens of thousands of spectators, and merchants of all kinds have gathered to relive these events that shaped our nation and its people forever.
2013 and 2014 have seen anniversaries of other battles from an earlier war which has also shaped American History, the War of 1812. Though overshadowed by its later, longer and bloodier cousin, the War of 1812 was the first major military test of new United States, the only conflict in our history in which a foreign power invaded our states, and the only one in which our capital, Washington DC, was captured. The War of 1812 is famous for Fort McHenry’s valiant stand against the British fleet, the setting of Francis Scott Key’s Star Spangled Banner, and for Andrew Jackson’s (Old Hickory) decimation of the British forces at the Battle of New Orleans.