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Armed insurrection



  • SynthesisSynthesis Honda Today! Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    L|ama wrote: »
    In vietnam the VC and NVA lost nearly ever significant engagement. Casualty ratios don't really mean shit, all that matters to the guerrillas is motivation.

    Well, motivation alone isn't enough if you don't have the outside backing, strategy, logistics and tactics under control, which VC/NVA had utterly perfected to a level unheard by any other guerilla organization in the history of the world. I mean, Hezbollah is maybe becoming a strong competitor (lets face it, they won the 2006 war, big time), but is still nowhere near approaching the scale that the Vietnamese pulled off. U.S. decided to try and take them on at their absolute apex, when they had been developing their strategy for close to two hundred years. They lost due to that.

    I'm not simply sure that a newly born American insurgency could take on a better U.S. military with experiences from several different guerilla conflicts, on their own soil, and become even one hundreth of the organization that VC/NVA is. Or Hezbollah for that matter. Or even Taleban, really.

    Same would go for most Western countries trying to take on their own military too.

    And like I said before, if the US had infinite political will, eventually the Vietnam war would have been won because all of the people capable of fighting would have died. This is pretty much almost what happened in Afghanistan V. Russia - not exactly an ideal situation, but something to keep in mind when comparing capability to political will

    Actually, this is not correct--while there's no doubt the Soviet Armed Forces visited a great level of destruction on the Afghanistan's communities and agriculture, they were not anywhere near destroying the entire fighting population, much less the entire population, or creating a circumstance where that would happen. Did they cause a huge humanitarian crisis. Yes, but to be fair, every invasion of Afghanistan has caused a huge humanitarian crisis.

    A better example would be the American campaign against North Vietnam (and, the case could be made, border villages in South Vietnam). There's a lot of reasons, but one of the simplest is that the Soviet military was not the American one--it had no huge air force that could drop millions of bombs across Afghanistan in unending waves, which was a major part of American war making. Carpet-bombing operations were conducted at places like Kandahar, but they pale in comparison to the efficiency of the US in this area. Some of the greatest destruction actually came after the war, from Soviet-laid land mines.

    The Soviets did kill a lot of people--with artillery, combined arms, frontal aviation (the famous helicopters)--but they weren't that successful. Also a fact that Afghan life was more widely dispersed than in North Vietnam in many respects (the Afghan equivalent of Hanoi were frequently held by the DRA). Then you have the porous nature of the Afghan state, particularly with Pakistan.

    If the Soviets had wanted to kill everyone who might possibly oppose them, they would have done something different--nuclear weapons being the most blatant example, but at the very least, they probably would have employed the VVS to a wider degree (the Soviets were enormously interested in the US defeat in Vietnam, and were well aware of the strength of air power), whereas the VVS was primarily focused close support from frontal aviation and logistical assistance of armies on the ground. I doubt they could have carried it on the same scale as the US, but they would tried at least, wherein they didn't. Instead, they gambled on an counter-insurgency campaign combined with a massive build-up of the DRA's own military--the first part which failed, but the later which was actually reasonably successful after the Soviet withdrawal until the money--a lot of money--dried up. The reasons? Well, as was said, the Soviet severely lacked the will to wage that kind of war (there was a deliberate effort for the entire decade to downplay the war as something more of a 'police action' on behalf of the DRA, instead of an actual invasion, and great effort was taken to keep the war from impacting Soviet society outside of mobilized men--right down to the need for an exit window, provided by Operation Magistral).

    (Basically, that movie Charlie Wilson's War, is, unsurprisingly, mostly wrong.)

    Synthesis on
    Orca wrote: »
    Synthesis wrote:
    Isn't "Your sarcasm makes me wet," the highest compliment an Abh can pay a human?

    Only if said Abh is a member of the nobility.
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