Most Heroic Last Stand Ever

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Polynikes
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Post by Polynikes » 27 Nov 2007 06:29

lwhite wrote:It has often been stated that the Plains Indians were the best light cavalry in the world,and on June 25 1876 they proved how good they were.
Yes this has often been said but it's a complete myth.

The plains indian was a decent horseman but no better than hundreds of Asian tribes from Huns to Cossacks.

Indeed the plains indian can hardly be described as cavalry at all - they merely used their mounts for transport & were incapable of manoevre.

In short they acted like a mounted band rather than a military unit.

Pitch 100 indians with 100 Mongols and it's no contest...the Mongols shoot a couple of arrows and wave a few flags and go to plan 14f.

The indians have plan a (attack), plan b (run away).

Mongols slaughter the hapless indians.

It should also be mentioned that in their two biggest victories, the American indian fought mostly on foot (Little Big Horn and McPherson's Relief).

lwhite
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Post by lwhite » 27 Nov 2007 11:02

Polynikes , The Indians were pretty good at setting up an ambush or luring the enemy into traps. Fetterman Massacre, Dade Massacre ,Braddock Massacre. You may very well be correct that in a stand up fight the Mongols would win, however I don't think the Indians would have fought in that manner. The Mongols have to get rest, go into camp at night. Most likely the Indians would raid their horse herd, conduct hit and run type operations. If the Indian warriors ever get the Mongols to flee, or turn their backs,,then it becomes a Buffalo hunt.

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Kim Sung
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Post by Kim Sung » 28 Nov 2007 03:10

Another last stand during the Russo-Japanese War.

The Japanese army suffered much in their siege of Lushun because of strong Russian fortresses located in Mt. Songshu (松樹山), Mt. Erlong (二龍山) and especially Mt. Dongjiguan (東鶏冠山). The Japanese 11th Division attacked Dongjiguan fortress twice but heavy casualties were inflicted by Russian artillery and machine guns.

In order to crush strong Russian defense, the Japanese constructed trenches parallel to the Dongjiguan fortress and advanced trenches step by step. In the their third attack, the Japanese succeeded in blasting concrete walls of the center of the fortress on November 26 and 28 (as shown in red circles in the drawing below), but this breakthrough was limited to outer parts of the fortress which still stood fast.

On December 6 when Height 203 fell to the Japanese, Russian defense got a big blow and, on December 18, the Dongjiguan fortress finally fell. On December 15, just before the fall of the Dongjiguan fortress, General Roman Kondratenko (Роман Кондратенко) who was the de-facto commander of the Russian troops in Lushun was killed by Japanese 28cm howitzer when he was about to leave the fortress after encouraging his men. His death was a big psychological blow to the Russian morale and signified the fall of Lushun which the Russians would retake in 1945.

The Russian troops lost the Battle of Lushun but they fought bravely against such odds and their valor and sacrifice will be remembered forever.

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* Image Source: 露日戦争 (The Russo-Japanese War)

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Kim Sung
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Post by Kim Sung » 28 Nov 2007 03:32

Main gate of the Dongjiguan fortress where General Roman Kondratenko was killed

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Inside of the Fortress

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Attacking this main area of the fortress, more than 800 Japanese soldiers were killed

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http://chibaphoto.jp/dairen/dairen2.html

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Kim Sung
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Post by Kim Sung » 28 Nov 2007 03:44

The funeral for General Kondratenko in St. Petersburg on September 25, 1905

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He was tall, handsome guy so he was very popular among women. It is said that general Stessel's wife was enamored of him so Stessel' ordered his staffs to keep his wife away from Konrdatenko.

http://historydoc.edu.ru/catalog.asp?ob ... cat_ob_no=

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Kim Sung
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Post by Kim Sung » 02 Dec 2007 07:57

The Japanese troops advanced their trenches toward the Russian defense line step by step. In spite of fierce Japanese attacks, Russian soldiers stood fast in the Dongjiguan fortress and Height 203.

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Polynikes
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Post by Polynikes » 05 Dec 2007 00:28

lwhite wrote:Polynikes , The Indians were pretty good at setting up an ambush or luring the enemy into traps. Fetterman Massacre, Dade Massacre ,Braddock Massacre. You may very well be correct that in a stand up fight the Mongols would win, however I don't think the Indians would have fought in that manner. The Mongols have to get rest, go into camp at night. Most likely the Indians would raid their horse herd, conduct hit and run type operations. If the Indian warriors ever get the Mongols to flee, or turn their backs,,then it becomes a Buffalo hunt.
The North American indian was basically a foot soldier and although the plains indians did learn how to ride their ponies with a reasonable degree of proficency, their lack of organisation meant they were incapable of mounting any kind of organised operation.

Their vicories over the white settlers were mostly with the benefit of numerical superiority rather than any cavalry skills whereas the Mongols were frequently outnumbered and won through superior soldiering.
Indeed the North American indian made a poor soldier & as I said above, I would say their lack of organisation means they can't be classed as cavalry (or infantry) at all.

You clearly know little about the Mongols when you state they would retire to a camp at night (when many indians; superstitions prevented them from leaving theirs BTW) and allow the indians to simply raid their herd.

The indians were incapable of mounting hit-and-run raids against anything other than "soft" targets.

The Mongols destroyed races far more advanced than the American indian....as for your "buffalo hunt", the only ones being hunted down would be the indians. Very quickly.

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Kim Sung
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Post by Kim Sung » 03 Mar 2008 15:09

Kim Sung wrote:
TISO wrote:What about the last battle of crew of Russian battleship Knyaz Suvorov flagship of Russian 2.nd Pacific squadron in the dissaster called the battle of Tsushima?
Anybody knows the naval cadet Werner Ivanovich von Kursel's fate?

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http://forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic. ... 27#1079827
http://forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic. ... 7#p1079827
I've found out that Werner Ivanovich von Kursel' and his one remaining comrade didn't survive the battle. They were killed when Knyaz Suvorov sank at 18:00 on May 27. Here is the list of the Russian naval officers killed in the Battle of Tsushima. You can find his name on the below of this list.

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http://kreisers.narod.ru/Cusima1.htm

He and his unknown comrade fought to the last minute in the sinking Knyaz Suvorov, which shows that Russian officers and soldiers fought bravely against all odds in the Battle of Tsushima. Although defeated under extremely unfavorable conditions, they kept their honor by dying gloriously at the battle... To our disappointment, the Russians seem to have forgotten these two unknown heroes.

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Naval cadet Werner Ivanovich von Kursel' and his unknown man fighting against the Japanese fleet with their last remaining 75mm gun.

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Alaric
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Re:

Post by Alaric » 03 Apr 2008 10:08

GE Longstreet wrote:
Polynikes wrote:Besides at Camerone, Little Big Horn, Alamo etc ...the defenders LOST!
Besides, the so called "defenders" at Little Big Horn, who were the attacking party, were idiots, assholes, nazis!

And the real defenders won the battle (not the war, but the battle)!
I find your statement offensive as well as ignorant of the facts. The soldiers of the U.S. Army, 7th Cavalry Regiment, were following orders issued by the War Department as part of an offensive to return all off-reservation Indians, which had been classified as "hostile", to their reservation. I suggest you do some research on the subject before you make assinine statements like that.

Here are some suggested reading to get you started: To Hell With Honor-Custer And The Little Big Horn by Larry Sklenar, 2000, University of Oklahoma Press ISBN 0-8061-3156-X; Cavalier In Buckskin-George Armstong Custer And The Western Military Frontier by Robert M. Utley, 1988, University of Oklahoma Press, ISBN 0-8061-2150-5; and Custer's Last Campaign--Mitch Boyer and the Little Bighorn Reconstructed by John S. Gray, 1991, by University of Nebraska Press ISBN 0-8032-7040-2. And for some enlightenment on the "noble savage", Scalp Dance-Indian Warfare On The High Plains 1865-1879 by Thomas Goodrich, 1997, Stackpole Books, Mechanisburg Pennsylvania USA ISBN 0-8117-1523-X.

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Alaric
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Post by Alaric » 03 Apr 2008 10:35

Ziemowit wrote:Id like to mention the Polish defence of Westerplatte in 1939...182 Polish soldiers against 3,500 Nazi's.The soldiers eventually ran out of ammo however, the Poles had to also fight off the German ships Schleswig -Holstein.
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Source: http://www.kampania.digimer.pl/

Another defense worht mentioning is a Polish-Nazi one both armies consisting of about 200,000 men, it was lead on the Polish side by Taduesz Kutrzeb and it was the only time during the nazi september campaign where Hitler's 8th Army were forced to retreat.

Of course there were others such as Kircholm was mentioned but I don't consider it as a "last stand" since the Poles won.... also with Kluszyn Poles of 6,500 cavalry, defeated a Russian army of 35,000. However Bzura and Westerplatte were "Last stads" cause they wer enot victorious but they put up a hell of a fight....One last thing the Polish AK (Armia Krajowa) and the uprising of '44 Stalin promised assistance to the rebels if they would last at least 2 weeks, they lasted about 2 months while Stalin's armies watched across the Vistula. Even after that the Ak still fought till around '47.
I fail to understand why people still refer to German military of 1933-1945 as "nazis". The word nazi is a contraction of National Socialist German Workers Party (NSDAP) and refers to a political party. American soldiers weren't referred to as "Republicans" or "Democrats" or "Socialist Workers" or whatever political party they might have belonged to. These men were German soldiers, period. Put your personal prejudices aside.

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Re: Most Heroic Last Stand Ever

Post by Mark V » 03 Apr 2008 18:10

Hi.

I would humbly suggest the removal of the competition aspect from this otherwise great topic.

Who are we to know what was going inside every soldier mind on these historical battles, and categorize their valour ?

In this thread there is good selection of cases where men showed their best sides:

Honour and ability to overcome fear, selfishness, and other demons that haunt all of us.

Respect to them all.

Do we show any sign, even the tiniest part, of such character in OUR daily live ??


Regards, Mark V

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Robb
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Re: Most Heroic Last Stand Ever

Post by Robb » 04 Apr 2008 09:31

Hello All,

Please be mindful of Forum Rules when posting in this (and other) threads. :) Everyone is entitled to their view but must respect the views of others. Please also watch the language" used. Thank you.

regards Robb

Steve Wilcox
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Re:

Post by Steve Wilcox » 02 Sep 2009 14:52

Polynikes wrote:
lwhite wrote:It has often been stated that the Plains Indians were the best light cavalry in the world,and on June 25 1876 they proved how good they were.
Yes this has often been said but it's a complete myth.

The plains indian was a decent horseman but no better than hundreds of Asian tribes from Huns to Cossacks.
Major Marcus Reno's opinion:
"The Indians are the best light cavalry in the world. I have seen pretty nearly all of them, and I do not except even the Cossacks."
http://www.astonisher.com/archives/muse ... _horn.html

General Anson Mills' opinion:
"These Indians were most hideous, every one being painted in most hideous colors and designs, stark naked, except their moccasins, breech clouts and head gear, the latter consisting of feathers and horns, some of the horses being also painted, and the Indians proved then and there that they were the best cavalry soldiers on earth. In charging up towards us they exposed little of their person, hanging on with one arm around the neck and one leg over the horse firing and lancing from undernearth the horses' necks, so that there was no part of the Indian at which to aim."
http://www.astonisher.com/archives/muse ... st_cavalry

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Inselaffe
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Re: Most Heroic Last Stand Ever

Post by Inselaffe » 03 Sep 2009 15:52

Steve Wilcox wrote:Major Marcus Reno's opinion:
"The Indians are the best light cavalry in the world. I have seen pretty nearly all of them, and I do not except even the Cossacks."
http://www.astonisher.com/archives/muse ... _horn.html

Steve, I'd be interested to know how Reno had "seen pretty nearly all of them", I wasn't aware that he'd served overseas at any point? If this is only based on military delegations and so forth he saw in the US it's not worth that much in my humble opinion.

That's not to denegrate the abilitis of the Plains Indians, they were very good light cavalry, but the best in the world in the C19th? Highly unlikely. There are many other credible contenders.

Cheers.
"It was like Hungary being between Germany and the Soviet Union. What sort of choice was that? Which language would you like your firing squad to speak?" Tibor Fischer 'Under the Frog'.

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Re: Most Heroic Last Stand Ever

Post by Steve Wilcox » 03 Sep 2009 17:22

Inselaffe wrote:
Steve Wilcox wrote:Major Marcus Reno's opinion:
"The Indians are the best light cavalry in the world. I have seen pretty nearly all of them, and I do not except even the Cossacks."
http://www.astonisher.com/archives/muse ... _horn.html

Steve, I'd be interested to know how Reno had "seen pretty nearly all of them", I wasn't aware that he'd served overseas at any point? If this is only based on military delegations and so forth he saw in the US it's not worth that much in my humble opinion.
Unfortunately I am also curious regarding his experience with other light cavalry, but I thought it would be worth quoting from a contemporary source that held the Plains Indians were superior to the Cossacks.

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