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this always baffled me....

Discussion in 'History Forum' started by SICK, Feb 16, 2009.

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  1. SICK

    SICK Lounge Moderator

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    and im glad we have this forum for me to ask. MY american history teacher in HS....mr long. said something that i wont forget..and obviously havent yet....ill ask here....

    he said "the vietnamese beat us in vietnam by using our own invented type of war fare.....george washington helped defeat the brits by using guerilla war-fare.....not line up...fire...and take your chances...but hide in the woods, in trees, behind cliffs and sneak attack....."

    he said Vietnamese used our own invented warfare...to defeat us in vietnam......is that true? did washington invent guerilla warfare? and did the vietnamese use it against us? i always wondered....
     
  2. finsgirlie

    finsgirlie break my Luxury Box

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    i dunno who invented it but ya the Vietnamese used it....especially cuz that country is full of jungles and ****...they would hide in the trees, etc. killed a LOT of our men...
     
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  3. SICK

    SICK Lounge Moderator

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    lol i KNOW they used guerilla warfare....my question (i should have worded it better) is did they use it intentionally knowing it was ours first? did they use us using it as inspiration?
     
  4. unluckyluciano

    unluckyluciano For My Hero JetsSuck

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    I'm pretty sure guerrilla warfare was used before the american revolution.... I think at the time it was used it was not traditionally used.

    I would think the reason behind it being used in vietnam was more of it fit better with the surrounding jungle, and the numbers the vietnamese had.
     
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  5. cnc66

    cnc66 wiley veteran, bad spelur Luxury Box

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    Guerrilla warfare has been around as long as we have. What your teacher is referring to was how we fought the very formal British armies. In Europe all the armies fought in this very formal manner. We fought them toe to toe a couple of times and got bloodied up and defeated but our guerrilla tactics forced them out of the countryside. Remember, we were covered in forest at this time. The only clear areas were the ones we made by cutting down the trees. And we were woodsmen skilled at hunting these forests so the cover was used to ambush and escape.

    The Brits were some tough cookies and had kicked *** all over the world, and for awhile, they did it to us too. We had some amazing determination sprinkled with some luck that let us colonialists came out on top. The Brits weren't done with us either, they interferred constantly through to just before WWI. We were in a Battleship building contest and were considering war with each other when the Kaiser jumped all over Europe and became the bigger menace.

    The colonialists learned these things from the Indians as had the French, who were very good too at this too. The Indians were the teachers, they had been fighting each other for thousands of years like this. To them, the entire design was to come home with all your warriors, they were needed. They became adept at ambush and sneak attack. Come home and fight again, tough to do when the killing was hand to hand.. bravery was honored above all else.

    The Vietcong had already driven the French out by force before we arrived so they had an enormous fieldcraft advantage. They had been fighting each other in those jungles and mountainsides for a millenia using the same hit and run tactics as our forefathers used. Eventually, they denied us the country side, drove us into the cities, then pushed us into the sea. I was serving then in the Sub Service, they were dark days for us all in uniform.

    An armed determined militia is tough to beat if they control the countryside.
     
  6. Dannyg28

    Dannyg28 Say hi to the rings

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    guerrilla warfare is probably the oldest form of warfare there is, its basically just hiding until your enemy is in position for you to attack them , doesn't take any sort of complex formations or maneuvers and is similar to how we hunted in our earliest days.
     
  7. Stitches

    Stitches ThePhin's Biggest Killjoy Luxury Box

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    1. As has been mentioned Washington didn't invent guerrilla warfare.
    2. Guerrilla warfare isn't why we "lost" the Vietnam war. :shifty:
     
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  8. jdang307

    jdang307 Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    There is a rifle-dropping joke in here somewhere ...

    I remember watching as a kid a movie about the revolutionary war, where the formalities of war was abandoned, with the colonists learning it from the indians. I thought I saw or read something about the Canadians too, or maybe indians from what is no canada. I forget.
     
  9. peastri

    peastri iD'Artiste Luxury Box

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    Excellent post Marty. I didn't realise this. Learn something new every day eh? Of course being especially close to the Brits at that time I'm sure hearing of a race for the biggest battleship with the Americans would have been regarded as silly nonsense - rather.
     
  10. unluckyluciano

    unluckyluciano For My Hero JetsSuck

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    i believe they think the jews used guerrilla warfare in some their very early wars. Can anyone confirm or deny this?
     
  11. jdang307

    jdang307 Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    My uncle, who was jailed for 10 years after the war, recently told me when he was fighting along side Americans, that they were awesome. Their technology and strategies were too good. When they fought, they fought. Only reason they would have lost a battle or what not was just sheer numbers.

    I can't argue with a guy who fought along side the US troops over there.

    I don't understand why everyone believes the We lost that war (funny I say we, as my parents are from Vietnam, but I'm an American through and through, but still funny). The US decided to pull out. They did not lose that war.
     
  12. padre31

    padre31 Premium Member Luxury Box

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    That is true, the Macchabees used unconventional tactics, as did the post 70 AD Jewish rebels everything from underground fortresses/hideouts to seizing the Palace at Masada and forcing the Roman to destroy it.

    I'd disagree with your teachers notion SickFF, the Vietnamese used Communistic Tactics of insurgency and cadre and rarely engaged in set piece battle outside of Tet or Diem Bein Phu where the French entrenched against a massive Vietnamese force in a sort Yorktown for the French.

    Now they did hijack the use of a "People's Army" but mainly the fighting was not large army v large army, they broke things down to small unit tactics for the most part.
     
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  13. SICK

    SICK Lounge Moderator

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    thanks for the informative answers everyone.....this has bothered me sense i was 15 haha....glad this forum was created so i can get closure haha
     
  14. FinSane

    FinSane Cynical Dolphins Fan

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    The US lost the way because The US and its client government that they set up did not win over the support of the South Vietnamese.
     
  15. padre31

    padre31 Premium Member Luxury Box

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    Nope, the Republic of South Vietnam was overrun because the Congress reneged on our Treaty Obligations to aid them with supplies and air power.

    They cut the funding off while the People's Socialist Democratic Republic of North Vietnam was receiving massive amounts of military aid from the Soviet Union and to a lesser extent the ChiComs.

    The Chinese actually invaded Vietnam in 1979 as a sort of probe the two countries are not historical allies in any meaningful sense of the term.
     
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  16. Boik14

    Boik14 Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    The US ultimately DID lose that war because they failed in their ultimate goal to make Vietnam a non-communist nation. The war was basically fought in vain because the ultimate goal of the war was a failure.

    We had better soldiers, there is no question, better trained, more advanced etc but ultimately China's support of Vietnam played a heavy role in how the war played out.
     
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  17. gafinfan

    gafinfan gunner Club Member

    Wow, I just have to chime in here cause I been there and done that. We lost in Nam because we had no plan to win. LBJ thought he was a better General than his Generals. I controled guys going into the North on bombing runs and we were NEVER allowed to deviate from the assigned target even when it was no longer there or viable. Every flight was approved and cleared by LBJ and thats the Gods honest truth! There was no such thing as a target of opportunity. While I respect the North and VC solder as a fighter he never won a major battle against the American solder! What they did do was win the hearts and minds of the American public with alot of help from LBJ and his crew. In point of fact after the fall of Hue the VC as a fighting force was dead. To those of you who think that Platoon was the way the American solder truly acted was surely not the case during my time. A more realistic movie IMHO was When We Were Solder and Young. Alot of future greats came out of that war and made damn sure the next one we fought was done right by the grunts who had to fight it. May god bless them all.
     
  18. opfinistic

    opfinistic Braaaaains!

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    Great post soldier, thank you for serving our country.
     
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  19. jdang307

    jdang307 Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    They changed their mind but they did not lose the war. I guess it's a point of semantics now. They abandoned the war, they didn't lose it. Losing it implies the viet minh and viet cong beat them in battle, and that definitely did not happen.

    According to everything I've read, the Tet Offensive was largely futile in regards to casualties, and was quite devastating to Communist forces, which allowed the US, where public sentiment for the war was very low, to pull out. But you would 't know that because of sensational imagery that was displayed over here. See, media had an agenda back then too :D I keed I keed.
     
  20. Sethdaddy8

    Sethdaddy8 Well-Known Member

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    Sick your history teacher was flat out wrong(from my research and studies). US troops didn't lose a single battle in Vietnam. We simply didn't convert the entire nation to a democracy and thus, its considered a loss by many. but flying under the radar of china and the ussr prevented an onslaught nuclear..or more aggressive style of attack that could have easily terminated north vietnam. but presidents of that era(kennedy, lbj, nixon) didnt want to gamble on a WW3, so they played it and fought it under the radar.

    a much better example of someone using George Washingtons brilliant (stick and move) tactics would be Mao Tse Tsung and the Red Army, not North Vietnam.

    the term mobile army, is more important than guerilla warfare here...when discussing Washington's brilliance.
     
  21. Themole

    Themole Season Ticket Holder

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    Here smore history on it Sick.

    http://www.virtualvermonter.com/history/greenmtboys.htm
     
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  22. DOLPHAN1

    DOLPHAN1 Premium Member Luxury Box

    no. The Viet-Min used the same tactics on the French in the 50's.
     
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  23. gafinfan

    gafinfan gunner Club Member

    I found this on another forum, one that the Vets might want to take a look at, about the truths/untruths about Vietnam.

    Some facts about Vietnam

    http://www.patriotfiles.com/forum/showthread.php?t=108151


     
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  24. my 2 cents

    my 2 cents Well-Known Member

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    If you like reading I highly recommend The Long Grey line.............and thank you for your service.
     
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  25. BigDogsHunt

    BigDogsHunt Enough talk...prove it!

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    As has been stated, history is littered with smaller forces using "un-conventional" tactics against larger organized forces.

    What G. Washington figured out in the North and what Francis Marion (The Swamp Fox) figured out in the South was that knowing the land; knowing your strengths, and equally important is knowing your enemies weaknesses goes all the way back to the beginning of time (read Sun Tzu's Art of War) as well. As was mentioned, from what the Jews did to attempt a revolt against the Roman Armies oppression; to modern day Irag/Afghanistan - the unconventional becomes the conventional for the force that would be obliterated in a "traditional" military "who's hang-down is bigger" type affair.
    Being out numbered makes that style a pre-requisite and using the terrain to your advantage is and always will be a part of that. From trees, to holes in the ground with tunnel systems, to caves, etc....

    And Yes, America has never been successful when DC-based POLITICIANS coordinate/overrule our battlefield strategy.
     
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  26. mi2cents

    mi2cents New Member

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rogers'_Rangers
     

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