Monday, 26 September, 2011
Albion, Bison, and Desert Storm, are just few code names applied to military operations… but when did the practice of using such names commence?
By the end of the war, the practice was well-established on all sides, with code names given for everything from post-war Nazi insurgencies (Operation Werwolf) to psychological mail campaigns (Operation Cornflakes) to fake missions altogether (Operation Mincemeat). In most cases, names were chosen by mid-level officers in charge of planning, but frequent interventions took place when tagging significant campaigns.
history, military, names, warfare
Friday, 29 July, 2011
The metal suits of armour worn by knights and soldiers during medieval times, which weighed in at anywhere from 30 to 50 kilograms, often rendered wearers exhausted before they even reached the battlefield.
To study this, researchers asked four participants, who regularly re-enact battles for the Royal Armouries in Leeds, to don their exact-replica armour from England, Gothic Germany and Italy and get onto a treadmill. By recording how much oxygen they took in and carbon dioxide they produced, the team was able to calculate how much energy they were using. High-speed cameras also helped the researchers to study how the volunteers were using their limbs. Dr Askew, who carried out the research with colleagues from the University of Oxford and the University of Milan, said: “Our main finding was that it was extremely expensive in terms of the amount of energy used to move in the armour.” The team found that walking and running with the armour used up twice as much energy as doing the same thing without any armour.
armour, defence, history, knights, warfare
Thursday, 17 March, 2011
Many nations have probably given thought to establishing a military base on the Moon, but in 1959 the US Army issued a detailed specification, called “Project Horizon”, setting out the requirements of such a facility, which at the time, they hoped would be operational by 1965.
There is a requirement for a manned military outpost on the moon. The lunar outpost is required to develop and protect potential United States interests on the moon; to develop techniques in moon-based surveillance of the earth and space, in communications relay, and in operations on the surface of the moon; to serve as a base for exploration of the moon, for further exploration into space and for military operations on the moon if required; and to support scientific investigations on the moon.
military bases, Moon, space exploration, warfare
Monday, 31 January, 2011
A chilling question… could Earth’s satellite, the Moon, have military value? Possibly, though tremendous effort would be required to realise any sort of advantage.
The moon also has two very important resources that would be useful for some country to control by military means, water and helium 3. Lunar frozen water, recently discovered in great abundance, can be used to sustain a lunar settlement and refuel space craft headed to other destinations in the solar system. Control the water and one controls access not only to the moon but to destinations beyond. Helium 3, an isotope not found on the Earth, is envisioned by some scientists as a clean burning fuel for future, fusion power plants. If and when fusion power becomes reality, control of the Moon becomes the rough equivalent of control of the Persian Gulf.
Helium 3, Moon, space exploration, war, warfare
Wednesday, 5 January, 2011
A study of the remains of soldiers found in mass graves near Towton, in the north of England, who fought in one of the War of the Roses most decisive battles in 1461, reveals not only just how bloody and violent the nature of medieval fighting was, but also dispels misconceptions about the overall health and constitution of people of the time.
This physical diversity is unsurprising, given the disparate types of men who took the battlefield that day. Yet as a group the Towton men are a reminder that images of the medieval male as a homunculus with rotten teeth are well wide of the mark. The average medieval man stood 1.71 metres tall – just four centimetres shorter than a modern Englishman. “It is only in the Victorian era that people started to get very stunted,” says Mr Knüsel. Their health was generally good. Dietary isotopes from their knee-bones show that they ate pretty healthily. Sugar was not widely available at that time, so their teeth were strong, too.
battles, England, history, Towton, warfare
Tuesday, 10 August, 2010
Martin Cherrett has embarked on an ambitious project… to blog significant events from World War II, on a daily basis, almost seventy years later.
This looks like a great history resource in the making.
events, history, resources, warfare, world wars
Tuesday, 10 August, 2010
Hugh Dolan, currently an intelligence officer with the Australian military, has just published a book, “36 Days: The Untold Story Behind the Gallipoli Landings”, which significantly alters existing versions of what exactly happened at Gallipoli, Turkey, in 1915, during World War I.
Dolan insists the three key Australian officers who planned the operation made ground-breaking use of military intelligence – including aerial reconnaissance photographs – to put together an almost flawless plan. But their triumph has been overshadowed by the disasters which happened after the landings, Dolan argues, completely distorting what was achieved on the original Anzac Day. ”The most glaring error is the fact it is always described as a dawn landing,” says Dolan. ”It wasn’t. A dawn attack is a daylight attack. This was a silent night attack. It took place in complete darkness.”
ANZAC Day, Gallipoli, history, warfare, world wars
Monday, 1 February, 2010
Renaissance age master-of-all-trades Leonardo da Vinci at one point appeared intent on pursuing a career well outside of the arts, if a letter he wrote to Ludovico il Moro, the Duke of Milan in 1482, while seeking employment, is anything to go by:
I will make covered chariots, safe and unattackable, which, entering among the enemy with their artillery, there is no body of men so great but they would break them. And behind these, infantry could follow quite unhurt and without any hindrance.
The letter is just one of many documents contained in the “Codex Atlanticus”, a 12 volume collection of da Vinci’s drawings and writings.
CV, Leonardo Da Vinci, resume, warfare, weapons
Wednesday, 18 November, 2009
Seven key military strategies that saw the Byzantine – or Eastern Roman – empire stand for over one thousand years (although virtually all territory had been lost prior to 1453), that latter-day superpowers could learn from.
Campaign vigorously, both offensively and defensively, but avoid battles, especially large-scale battles, except in very favorable circumstances. Don’t think like the Romans, who viewed persuasion as just an adjunct to force. Instead, employ force in the smallest possible doses to help persuade the persuadable and harm those not yet amenable to persuasion.
Byzantine, Byzantine Empire, Constantinople, empires, history, warfare
Tuesday, 17 March, 2009
Author and futurologist George Friedman sets out his predictions for the 21st century, which includes the continuing dominance of the United States, in his new book The Next 100 Years: A Forecast for the 21st Century.
The ’40s will see the emergence of three new great powers: Japan, Turkey and Poland. Japan will attempt to take control of the Pacific; Turkey will be the strongest power in the Islamic countries; and Poland will scoop up the remnants of Eastern Europe after the collapse of the Russian Federation. American interests will be threatened by the resurgence of Japan and Turkey, leading to the next global war in the ’50s.
conflict, future, George Friedman, superpowers, warfare