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"Worst last stand/military disaster in which to die" Topic

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Historydude1812 Feb 2020 8:56 p.m. PST

This does sound a bit dumb at first since a dead man is a dead man but my father and I are huge military history buffs and both of us have always been fascinated by last stand battles and terrible military disasters especially (often times the two go hand in hand) and we have visited all of the ones in the US and want to see the international ones. We were talking in the car today about which of these battles would be the worst to fight or die in, either by way of death or just sheer terror of knowing you aren't going to make it. My vote was Little Bighorn or the Fetterman Fight as I've visited both those battlefields and weirdly have had a nightmare for years about being attacked by Indians and one where I was killed at LBH, and I know for a fact it was LBH because I've been there. Anyway, this does sound weird but I'm curious if any of you have ever thought about this. Which of the battles that fall into either or both of these categories would based on what we know be the worst way to die?

darthfozzywig Supporting Member of TMP12 Feb 2020 9:11 p.m. PST

LBH would be bad. Isandlwana, too. Last few rooms of the Alamo.

Really, any battle where I'm surrounded and about to be hacked to death would pretty much suck, but it's extra sucky to be among the last as you see it coming.

DisasterWargamer Supporting Member of TMP12 Feb 2020 9:27 p.m. PST

Any pointless last stand

saltflats192912 Feb 2020 9:34 p.m. PST

Stalingrad. Years of gulag just to die anyway.

Dn Jackson12 Feb 2020 10:05 p.m. PST

Bataan. You fight for months, your commanding officer is evacuated along with his family and clothes, furniture, etc, and you have to die of starvation on the Death March or in a Japanese POW camp.

Personal logo Der Alte Fritz Sponsoring Member of TMP12 Feb 2020 10:10 p.m. PST

Isandlhwana. Outnumbered 20 to 1, Zulus coming from every direction, and knowing that the Zulus don't take prisoners.

Adowa is similar to Isandlhwana in its horribleness.

Prince Rupert of the Rhine12 Feb 2020 10:41 p.m. PST

The 1842 retreat from Kabul always sounded pretty bloody awful. It must have been pretty terrifying watching the column slowly fall apart in hostile territory.

14Bore13 Feb 2020 1:49 a.m. PST

Or Little Bighorn

JimDuncanUK13 Feb 2020 4:09 a.m. PST

Culloden, especially if you like whisky, salmon and beef.

Tired Mammal13 Feb 2020 5:32 a.m. PST

New Orleans 1815, That major battle in the 1812 -14 war.

Big Red Supporting Member of TMP13 Feb 2020 6:04 a.m. PST

Retreat from Moscow, either 1812 or 1941/42 – freezing, starving and very angry Russians in the offing.

Irish Marine Supporting Member of TMP13 Feb 2020 6:09 a.m. PST

Wake Island

Frederick Supporting Member of TMP13 Feb 2020 6:18 a.m. PST

For military disaster Stalingrad and Retreat from Moscow are way up there

For last stand Isandlhwana

FearAndLoathing13 Feb 2020 6:41 a.m. PST

1842 retreat from Kabul was pretty awful

Rich Bliss13 Feb 2020 6:41 a.m. PST

"When you're wounded and dying on Afghanistan's plains. And the women come out to cut up your remains. Just roll to your rifle and blow out your brains. And go to your God like a soldier"

Wackmole9 Supporting Member of TMP13 Feb 2020 7:24 a.m. PST

Not a last stand but Andersonville Prison is one of the scariest places I've every been. Also the Donner party site.

Don Manser13 Feb 2020 9:24 a.m. PST

Teutoburg Forest
Swiss Guards in 1792 defending an abandoned Tuileries

Personal logo Saber6 Supporting Member of TMP Fezian13 Feb 2020 9:44 a.m. PST

Fetterman: Not only are you dying, you are freezing

JMcCarroll Supporting Member of TMP13 Feb 2020 9:57 a.m. PST

Well I'm not sure it is worst last stand/military disaster in which to die. But, Captain Cook in Hawaii might be.
When Hawaiians are asked what type of guy Captain Cook was there reply " was delicious! ".

Personal logo Bobgnar Supporting Member of TMP13 Feb 2020 10:15 a.m. PST

As pointed out by others, perhaps it is not the final death blow that makes the last stand the worst place to die, but the lead up. Moscow retreats, Stalingrad, Kabul retreat, Battle of Carrhae, Berlin 1945 (especially if you are a civilian), Lenningrad, Masada, Warsaw Ghetto, Mount Carmel Center siege.

Choctaw13 Feb 2020 10:44 a.m. PST

To be a citizen in any town or city that didn't immediately surrender to a Roman army upon demand. Bad things were going to be coming my way.

Prince Rupert of the Rhine13 Feb 2020 12:38 p.m. PST

Thinking about it you probably didn't want to be in Baghdad circa Feb 10th 1258AD either…Mongols didn't have a reputation for being a nice bunch.

Old Glory Sponsoring Member of TMP13 Feb 2020 1:00 p.m. PST

How about falling into the hands of Vlad the impaler ?

Mister Tibbles13 Feb 2020 1:01 p.m. PST

Choctaw, that's what I was thinking. Jerusalem comes to mind.

Lee49413 Feb 2020 7:22 p.m. PST


gunnerphil14 Feb 2020 3:53 a.m. PST

Is there a good one to die in?

Dicymick14 Feb 2020 4:26 a.m. PST

USS Indianapolis.

historygamer14 Feb 2020 9:14 a.m. PST

Braddock's Defeat, or Grant's Hill. Captured by Indians and killed in ritualistic torture.

Personal logo Narratio Supporting Member of TMP15 Feb 2020 6:59 p.m. PST

I admit that it's relatively small, but no mention of Camerone? Or does that count as a good last stand and not a military disaster?

Otherwise, like the above, I'd go with Isandlhwana or possibly the Fetterman Massacre

Historydude1817 Feb 2020 10:58 a.m. PST

I really liked these responses to my post. Interesting stuff to ponder.
I still think LBH and Fetterman would be worse than Isandlwana though. I've always found Plains Indians warriors far more scary looking and frightening than Zulus.

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