Skip to comments.The 21st Century Charge of the Light Brigade: 600 men on horseback galloping into gunfire
Posted on 02/03/2018 6:33:45 PM PST by mairdie
Captain Mark Nutsch rode past dead and dying men, the air filled with the iron scent of blood and the acrid stench of gunpowder. Smoke hovered above the field. The horsemen charging alongside him raised their rocket-propelled grenades and fired at the enemy ahead, the resulting explosions rocking them in their saddles.
Would the plan work, or was it a death sentence? Either way, this was not how modern warfare was supposed to be fought. A cavalry charge, headlong into enemy gunfire it was the sort of reckless risk of human life that belonged in the pages of a history book. Yet here was an elite band of US Green Berets, at the dawn of the 21st Century, in a mission so extraordinary that it has inspired a new movie, 12 Strong, starring Chris Hemsworth.
And what brought them to this desolate mountain wasteland was an act of war on America itself
(Excerpt) Read more at dailymail.co.uk ...
“Forsooth, and Tarrie Not to drinke ye thine Ovaltine”
FWIW, I read an analysis of the what happened with the Light Brigade, and it boiled down to a misunderstanding of vague orders, with the green, relatively untrained commander ignoring the nearer, first enemy unit, and going head long into canon fire, with the first enemy unit raking a crossfire into the cavalry going in, and then more raking crossfire into the retreating survivors on the way out.
Not quite apples to apples with what the US Army unit did.
Can’t imagine battles often went quite the way people planned them. And in those days you didn’t know what was going on at any point except for riders bringing reports. Amazing things worked out as well as they did before they could use balloons for observation.
I saw 12 Strong today. A good, straightforward war movie. All the politics in the movie are centered around the Afghan warlords. Helmsworth is good. As is the actor playing the allied warlord. The teams accomplishments wrre a marvel.
Oh, that’s EXCELLENT to know. Thanks so much for the review. Sounds like a movie worth going to.
I saw the movie as well. I did wonder if the horse charge was real or a Hollywood artifact. Amazing men and story.
The charge is an excellent example of How Things Go Wrong. Raglan and the British staff were up on a ridge and enjoyed a panoramic view. Cardigan and the Light Brigade were in the valley with a very limited view. What was self-evident to Raglan was invisible to Cardigan, who was ordered to charge a captured battery to prevent the guns from being hauled off by the Russians. But Cardigan couldn't see that part of the field. He charged the only guns he could see. The staff officer who carried the message, Captain Nolan, apparently notice the mistake and was galloping to overtake Cardigan, presumably to redirect the charge, when he was killed by a Russian cannonball.
We can say straight away he wasnt anything to do with stopping the Anglo-Saxons - he was fighting other Britons in the North.
Gildas, a near-contemporary, names Aurelius Ambrosius as the leader of the Britons' resistance to the Saxon invasion. The name "Arthur" doesn't appear until Nennius, who wrote several hundred years later. Legend, however, conflates Arthur with the leader of the resistance to the Saxons. The big conundrum in the King Arthur debate is to somehow connect Ambrosius and the later Arthur.
Was there an historical Arthur? Well ... since the Britons didn't just roll over and surrender to the invading Germanic tribes, someone (or several someones) led the resistance, which enjoyed a temporary success before eventually collapsing. The later Arthur legends coalesced around this heroic figure. It's the name change from Ambrosius to Arthur that causes the difficulty.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.