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Old 17th January 2009, 05:06 PM   #7
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Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: The Sharp end
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Originally Posted by katana
I think KuKulzA28 comments on being 'adaptive' is very relevant. New colonies often meant new terrain and climatic differences.....something the locals were used to fighting in .....their martial traditions and tactics would have been 'moulded' by years of conflict.

One of the 'known' tactics employed by the colonialists would have been 'divide and rule'.....why directly fight the natives....when you could 'manipulate' tribes/factions/smaller kingdoms to fight each other.

I also believe that, naively, European invaders often under-estimated the indigenous people ....believing that they (Europeans) were superior in both technology and knowledge. Often a costly mistake ....Zulu springs to mind ...often after such defeats....the colonialists retaliation was often brutal, often increasing their army's numbers, and arms to ensure save 'face' and 're-establish' their supremacy.

Another consideration is the fact that the indigenous people would generally fight more 'fiercly' .....afterall they were fighting for their homes, their people and their way of life. I think there is a quote somewhere which basically says something like 'one man that is fighting for a worth ten that have been paid to fight'

Regards David

Yes mate! Thats exactly what I was hoping to provoke a discussion of.
Not the Zulu wars in particular, but certainly the British empire was shown a few things during the wars in Nepal/Afghanistan and India.
I was hoping for of a discussion of how non-european weapons fared against a baseline of standardised european military equipment, and specific battles or wars where those lessons were taught and learned.

From our own UK POV clearly the Empire was extremely impressed with many 'ethnic' weapons, both in battle and in form.
From the adoption of Shamshirs as staff officers swords, the fact that the Sabre was adopted Europe wide as a standard Cavalry sword, to the Uks absorbtion of Ghurka regiments and allowing them to carry their own distinctive weapon.
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