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"Thought provoking Military Campaigns" Topic

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MiniPigs11 Oct 2019 1:27 p.m. PST

and the Authors that do them justice.

What campaigns do you find compelling and fascinating and what media do you think best portrays them?

They can be large or small in scale, long or short and measured by the moves the commanders made, the ferocity or chivalry of the combats, the terrain/locales, the political or social stakes involved or just the excellent research or writing of the author which brings to life a campaign which might otherwise seem dull.

Personal logo deadhead Supporting Member of TMP11 Oct 2019 2:08 p.m. PST

Right now it is Hue 68. I always knew it ever since…well since being a schoolkid in 1968 and absolutely spellbound by what was going on in Khe Sanh and then Hue.

But in 67 I had already discovered Waterloo.

Bit later I became obsessed with the Finnish Airforce of WII.

Did I mention Pearl Harbour and the model of Arizona on Dec 8th? Plus every aircraft involved…or The Bay of Pigs aircraft?

Or every vehicle of 2eDB in the Liberation of Paris in 35mm.

I do tend to "do" OCD.

Thank God I did discover humans my age but with XX chromosomes had much more to offer…….

Yellow Admiral11 Oct 2019 10:52 p.m. PST

+1 Deadhead:

Bit later I became obsessed with the Finnish Airforce of WII.

I find nearly any military campaign fascinating if provided enough details and good narration.

A few months ago I was researching the invasion of Casablanca in 1942 (during Operation Torch); it is one of the more one-sided campaigns of WWII, but interesting anecdotes, unexpected difficulties, and the tragedy of blue-on-blue fighting made it fascinating, and I actually developed an entire campaign of linked wargames and a set of CY6 dogfight scenarios for the setting.

Concerning the periods this OP was posted to, I'll mention that I have an enduring fascination with recreating Burnside's expedition in 1862. IRL it was a very one-sided affair and at first blush looks no fun to game, but careful attention to detail shows that reversing the luck can make it a tough fight for the Union. There was a naval fight featuring a swirling melee with dozens of ships, a land fight that could have gone much worse for the Federal troops, and a couple amphibious ops that might have been disasters if they were resisted. I'd also like to try gaming a "what if" extension of the expedition to take Goldsboro. Goldsboro, NC was an almost excessively strategic chokepoint in the Confederacy's rail network, and it's fall into Union hands might have seriously impacted supply of the Virginia theater. Both sides might have been forced to bring in reinforcements in that contest, and it might very well have resulted in a see-saw campaign and some more riverine battles between small wooden steamboats with big cannons.

- Ix

Gunfreak Supporting Member of TMP12 Oct 2019 5:11 a.m. PST

Marlborough's stealth march from the low countries to Bavaria.
The planing and secrecy sounds more like something the later Churchill would plan. Than a 18th century operation.

Footslogger12 Oct 2019 9:21 a.m. PST

After I got into Waterloo, and after I got into the Peninsular War, I "found" the 1809 Danube campaign and have loved it ever since. So many points when it could have turned out differently. Quite a few smaller actions that are not hard to refight.

What got me into it? The beginning of a raft of decent books in English, and reasonably full OOBs.

Best medium? Maps! Lots of maps!

Hat tip to Bowden and Tarbox, James Arnold and John H. Gill – even if the earlier writers needed to be "improved upon" by subsequent authors.

catavar12 Oct 2019 12:29 p.m. PST

As a kid I was always fascinated by Gettysburg, and other Civil War, campaigns. There was a book in our library, that depicted the battles from a birds eye view, that got me interested.

Personal logo deadhead Supporting Member of TMP13 Oct 2019 11:01 a.m. PST

Sorry to say this folks…

But there is a certain personality type that focuses on several episodes of "one day in history" and, so, the serial number on the Finnish Fiat or Fokker fighter, the Coldstream Guards' belt buckles at Waterloo, which way the flag blew on the Arizona after it was sunk…all become absolutely of total significance…

Tell me about it. How grateful am I to 'er indoors who actually tries to listen even as her eyes glaze over.

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