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"War books: How to Win a Land War in Asia" Topic

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208 hits since 9 Jul 2020
©1994-2020 Bill Armintrout
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Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP09 Jul 2020 9:06 p.m. PST

"Every American strategist knows the famous warning: "Don't fight a land war in Asia." Unfortunately, sometimes they are unavoidable. Fortunately, on balance Western military powers have a very good record in winning land wars in Asia, if less so since 1945. One of the most interesting and successful ground campaigns of the twentieth century was the British-led effort to defend India from Japanese invasion via Southeast Asia from 1941 to 1945. A million Allied troops of the Fourteenth Army fought the Japanese for control of Burma over a 700-mile battlefront—the largest in any theater of World War II. During this campaign, special operations forces made their Asian debut, in the form of the famous Chindits. For much of the war, the fate of India, then still part of the British Empire, hung in the balance. While often referred to as the "forgotten war," in fact, the British high command recognized that victory in Southeast Asia was critical to victory in World War II. It was also a crucial factor in the decline and fall of the British-led world order: the costs of defending India in a modern war were so unsustainable they made empire economically unattractive for the first time, and contributed to the formal end of the British Empire with Indian independence in 1947…"
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Durban Gamer10 Jul 2020 4:11 a.m. PST

Great reminder of some excellent books!

Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP10 Jul 2020 12:15 p.m. PST



Oberlindes Sol LIC Supporting Member of TMP10 Jul 2020 4:35 p.m. PST

The warning is usually attributed to General MacArthur, but that may not be accurate. Philistines know about the warning from the movie The Princess Bride (it's also in the book), where it is stated, "never get involved in a land war in Asia."*

*The incomparable Wally Shawn plays Vizzini:

Vizzini: You only think I guessed wrong! That's what's so funny! I switched glasses when your back was turned! Ha ha! You fool! You fell victim to one of the classic blunders – The most famous of which is 'never get involved in a land war in Asia' – but only slightly less well-known is this: 'Never go against a Sicilian when death is on the line!' Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!

Vizzini falls over dead mid-laugh. Both glasses were poisoned, but Westley had built up a tolerance to iocaine poison.

There is a third classic blunder that destroyed two dictators (and a Swedish king): "Never march on Moscow," attributed to Field Marshall Montgomery. We wargamers might add, "if you're fighting after 1610."

Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP11 Jul 2020 12:38 p.m. PST



Walking Sailor Supporting Member of TMP12 Jul 2020 1:05 p.m. PST

From an older: "From Warsaw you cannot get to Moscow, but from Moscow you can always get to Berlin." Not sure who said that, probably a Russian.

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