Friday, May 11, 2012

Wall vs Charge, Spear vs Shield, Wile vs Whimsey

Those who have served in/or with the infantry knows that your zip and their zag can but one or both of you in a body bag. The First Law of Warfare is Murphy's Law; what can go wrong will, at the worst possible time and the worst possible place. Good training, equipment and leadership is validated by successful evasion, neutralization, and changing plans at the right time.

In addition to Handy Terrain Analyses, the hands on tool to determine the Roles and Rules by which all cultures in the Area of Interest, and the analyses of the drama that is central to a group's survival. It is METT-TC with the C being Culture.  I don't mean knowing whether to kiss, bow or shake thier hands.  Culture shows up in how they used the ground before the troops arrived, and gives a clue to everyone's "tipping point".  In the time of the Crusades, the culture of the cavalry was to chase after the enemy's cavalry, only to return to see the infantry face down for next dozen miles.

Task organization and battle drill focused on the specific MOS(Military Occupational Specialty) and home zipcode.  The MOS's pf a medieval formation is no less complicated than today's.

This is obviously more complicated tool than others, but most of the decisions on this matrix are made before the tools were designed.  Even when an excellent tool with a long record of success fails because another part of the matrix has shifted.  As the Crusaders became acclimatized to the desert clime, the heavier stuff came off or was made functionally as good, but lighter.

We will come back to this section shortly

The organization of a task force came from often as complicated as the MOS (Military Occupational Specialty) where skill sets were tied to a specific area and culture. Think of the English Long bowman, or the ships and sailors from Genoa and Venice, some came with two handed axes, others with a diversity of bows and arrows, some shot from the back with the bow resting on the soles of the feet.
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Two knights, two pikemen, one axeman, two archers, one crossbowman and a resupply of arrows.

The Tactical Imperative Matrix in the case show below is used instinctively with missile fire on the flanks  The pikes keep the cavalry at bay while archers can shoot them trying to evade the pikes, and then finish off the remainder with a good solid :whack: with axes,swords, or the mace. 

To be Continued.

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