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"British Tactics and Conflicting Strategies in Executing the" Topic


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Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP05 Jan 2021 8:38 p.m. PST

… American Revolution

"If we are to discuss the tactics used by the British government and its forces during the American Revolution, we must be aware of the various circumstances at play. Often, we tend to settle on a single element and use it to explain more than we should. By breaking down what factors went into decision-making, we can then begin to understand why events played out the way they did, and why British soldiers were often at a disadvantage during the war despite having the clear advantage of being the superior military power. We will discuss both tactics used by the army and navy while also showing how strategy played a major role in undermining how effective those tactics were.

When the war initially broke out in the spring of 1775, the area surrounding Boston was the epicenter of the rebellion. This was not unknown to the British government, whom had closed the port of Boston following several riots, the assault on the schooner Gaspee (moored near inland Rhode Island) and the infamous Tea Party of December 1773. Plans were to isolate the rebellion to the New England colonies, but how to achieve this was met with confusion and incoherence on the part of the King's ministers. Lord North, the King's chief minister to Parliament and disciple of British governance, was not a wartime leader, and often struggled to provide a clear and concise blueprint for action. On the other side of planning was George Germain, Secretary of State for the American Department. Germain, an overly confident former military officer, was less a military strategist as he was a personality to dislike. Germain did not take criticism lightly and found himself at odds with other MPs who questioned his planning. Nevertheless, King George III held his confidence in these men…"
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Amicalement
Armand

WillBGoode Supporting Member of TMP05 Jan 2021 9:52 p.m. PST

From the American Battlefield Trust web site.

historygamer Supporting Member of TMP08 Jan 2021 9:32 a.m. PST

"The wool-coated, sixty-pound backpack wearing, ten-pound musket carrying soldier, on the march for miles before an engagement, was often the victim of the elements rather than enemy fire."

60 pounds? What was he carrying, his bowling ball collection?

historygamer Supporting Member of TMP08 Jan 2021 9:38 a.m. PST

"As for field tactics used during battles, British commanders relied on what they were taught and what they knew of eighteenth-century combat. The traditional mode of battle called for a large body of troops to assemble into columns on a field and march, perhaps three to four soldiers deep, forward."

Okay, I quit reading at this point as this guy has no idea what he is talking about. Maybe why no one commented on this thread. Move along. Nothing to see here.

Brechtel198 Supporting Member of TMP08 Jan 2021 9:50 a.m. PST

If anyone is interested, this volume presents an interesting and balanced picture of the British Army in the War of the Revolution:

-With Zeal and Bayonets Only by Matthew Spring.

link

historygamer Supporting Member of TMP08 Jan 2021 9:59 a.m. PST

+1 to Brechtel198. The link to the article, from what I would have hoped was a reliable source, is a hot mess. Surprising and disappointing.

I'd also add that reading O'Shaughnessy's "The Men Who Lost America: British Leadership, the American Revolution and the Fate of the Empire" is a great read on issues beyond the battlefield.

Normal Guy Supporting Member of TMP08 Jan 2021 10:16 a.m. PST

+2 to Brechtel198. Spring's work is exceptional and balanced.

42flanker Supporting Member of TMP10 Jan 2021 3:26 a.m. PST

"Wool coated." I am shocked. Shocked!

Those wascally webels with their cotton-polyester mix gaberdine combatsuits had them pegged from the start.

"Pantaloons"!… Tsuh. Who were they kidding?

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