An armed conflict between state actors, typically for a political or economic aim. Use this tag for specific wars.

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What allowed the British to be able to burn Washington D.C. in the war of 1812?

The reason I'm asking is because of Washington D.C.'s location. It wasn't easily accessible by land and it wasn't easily traveled to by waterways. In what battles were the British able to get to ...
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How was Hitler able to rearm?

It seems that Germany must've been under incredible scrutiny especially by the British. How was Hitler able to rearm? Please provide specifics on personnel and weapons classes.
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482 views

Organized and intentional suicide attacks during military conflicts

First of all I want to make it clear that we're not speaking about terrorist attacks here. This question is strictly dedicated to war operations, in a dictionary meaning. Also this question is about ...
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191 views

Instances of the UN defusing serious crises

One of the reasons why the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis did not escalate into a war was due to the diplomacy of Adlai Stevenson in the UN. Are there other instances where the defusing of a serious crisis ...
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263 views

Has there ever been a war between members of a personal union?

A personal union occurs when two otherwise independent states (each with their own territories, governments, etc.) come to share the same monarch. Has it ever come to pass that two member states of a ...
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338 views

Who deposited German fuel drums on a Japanese air base in the Kuriles in 1943?

The Imperial Japanese Navy operated two all-weather, heated, lit runways on Matsuwa Island in the Kurile island chain. This island is littered with German fuel drums manufactured in 1943. It also ...
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4k views

Which arm was the shield held in?

I'm asking a question elsewhere and I'm sure I've heard some historical text to back this up as well as sound reasoning: you want your strongest arm to stop yourself from getting killed by using a ...
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733 views

How do modern historians evaluate Sherman's “Total War”?

A major element of Sherman's march to the sea was his army's burning southern farms and cities. The rationale for what Sherman called "Total War," approved by Grant and Lincoln, was that it would ...
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437 views

Historical examples of energy wars

Energy sources and resources like oil and coal are vital for the survival of modern civilizations. Are there any good historical examples of wars, or low intensity armed conflicts, over the control ...
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What was the reason for the Ottoman invasion of Otranto?

In 1480, the Ottomans invaded Otranto and briefly occupied it. However, it didn't seem that the city was strategically important or held particular value to the Ottomans, nor did they seem to follow ...
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204 views

What are the top 5 bloodiest battles in terms of British casualties?

I have done a bit of research and it seems the Somme, Towton and maybe Bannockburn are up there? Any more to throw into the mix? Great site by the way!
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354 views

What was the final result for France after the Napoleonic wars?

What I'd like to know is if the final outcome of the wars was ultimately beneficial for France. In territorial terms. Did it manage to keep some territorial gains? If the question isn't clear be ...
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129 views

Has a country gone to war to seek payment of a debt since 1900? [duplicate]

Has a country gone to war to seek payment of a debt since 1900? Expansionist policies don't count although use of debt as a justification would be interesting.
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167 views

Where can I find financial data for the first world war? [closed]

I want to analyse the first world war on the financial aspect. Here are some of my questions. Which countries borrowed money to win the war? Where were weapons manufactured? Where can I get ...
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2answers
219 views

When has a military force used their own people as human shields?

I am looking for instances/examples (and sources) throughout history of times an army used it's own people as a buffer between itself and an opposing force. While it is fairly common for an army to ...
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1k views

Sources for letters written during the Boer Wars

For a project at my school i need to make a 'letter home' of a canadian soldier that participated in the second boer war. I need to draw from primary sources and im not having luck finding any. so ...
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178 views

Luftwaffe Operations from Syria/Iraq in 1942

I recall reading somewhere that prior to the destruction of Vichy French forces in Syria the Luftwaffe operated at least one staffelen of He-111 bombers from either Syria or Iraq. Please can anyone ...
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185 views

What effort did the Luftwaffe make to prevent Operation Torch landings in North Africa 1942? [closed]

Did the Germans know about the Operation Torch landings in late 1942 and if so what steps were taken in particular by the Luftwaffe to intervene?
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3answers
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In Battle of Zama, how did Hannibal's use of war elephants lead to a Roman Victory?

Why did Hannibal attack with elephants from the front? Why not from side? Also why did the elephants just keep walking through the small gap? Why not wreak havoc in the middle of Roman troops? (like ...
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3answers
529 views

What started the Korean war?

Is it true that the catalyst was a conflict about a tree right on the border? I heard it from a teacher at a US university as he was teaching a course about nation-states in and out of war.
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134 views

How accurate is Russell on liberalism versus fanaticism in war?

After the second world war, reflecting on the rule of empiricism versus various kinds of dogmatism in political philosophy, Bertrand Russell writes (Philosophy and Politics, 1947; emphasis mine): ...
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2answers
254 views

Is the Sri Lankan Civil War really over?

I was wondering whether the Sri Lankan Civil War, which officially ended, would technically considered to be still ongoing, since there are still clashes going on to this day. Would this classify as a ...
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3answers
247 views

What was the dominant Soviet strategy for invading Germany in the 1980's?

Through archives and doctrinal publications, was there any bias towards attacking NATO through the North German Plain, the Fulda Gap, or something else?
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496 views

How could a chariot work against a phalanx?

During Battle of Gaugamela Darius now launched his chariots at those troops under Alexander's personal command... Those chariots who made it through the barrage of javelins charged the ...
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373 views

Was the Taiping Rebellion the deadliest war of the 19th Century?

According to Wikipedia: With no reliable census at the time, estimates are necessarily based on projections, but the most widely cited sources put the total number of deaths during the 15 ...
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1answer
111 views

Origin of the “Tartar” troops in the First Opium War

During the First Opium War, on the march to Peking, many of the battles that occurred did not involve Chinese soldiers, but fighters that the British described as "Tartars," being vaguely described as ...
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170 views

What was the custom/consensus regarding irregular combatants 19th century?

Immediately prior to the battle of Sedan, the German soldiers who captured the town of Bazeilles executed a number of armed civilians who had been firing on German troops that day. This happened in ...
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265 views

How much armor did elephant units wear?

I often hear stories about enemies defeating elephant riders by axing the legs of the elephants. Does this mean that the commander of the elephant army did not put enough armor on the elephants' ...
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191 views

3rd party (foreign nationality) forces active in Iran-Iraq war?

During the 8 year war between both countries many other 3rd party countries were involved too, in both supplying arms and experts, but I'm faced with claims of a major number of foreign soldiers being ...
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177 views

To What Extent Were St. Augustine's Just War Principles Used In The First Crusade?

The question is mostly self-explanatory; however I want to state I have read a few books so I am aware of abuses and also some of the origins of the Crusade. So what I am really asking for is ...
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249 views

In the British Invasion of Greece, what happened to the British troops who were not captured?

http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/british-forces-arrive-in-greece I also was wondering what happened to the soldiers who were not caught, if any? Where did they go, and what happened to ...
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1answer
835 views

Why was the Bay of Pigs invasion unsuccessful?

Goal of The Bay of Pigs invasion in April,1961. was to overthrow Cuba's president Castro. It was totally unsuccesful and counter-revolutionary military, trained by CIA was defeated in just two days. ...
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1answer
215 views

How often did kings give land to their sons?

During the middle ages, how often did kings give land for their sons to govern? In particular sons who were not heirs or even far in the line of succession. If they did give land would it be small ...
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214 views

Has the US Congress's power to declare war been rendered superfluous by recent conflicts?

After the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor, the Congress of the United States formally declared war on Japan. After Germany declared war on the United States, the Congress then formally declared war on ...
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180 views

Did defeated countries pay their war bonds? [closed]

This related question approaches how beneficial war bonds were to US during WWII. I would like to know what happen with war bonds when a country is defeated. What did happen in similar experiences? ...
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2answers
193 views

How significant was the US military role during the NATO campaign in Libya?

The NATO campaign in Libya was started by the UK and France, and the US was later also involved. How significant and vital was the US assistance in this campaign? Edit: I am primarily interested in ...
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What caused the turning point in Hundred Years' War?

At school I have learned that the English had upper hand in the war until Joan of Arc convinced the French king to give an army under her command to besiege Orléans and since then, the French forced ...
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508 views

Why is the Spanish-American War not called the Spanish-Cuban-American War?

Cuba was at war with Spain since 2/24/1895. In fact, it was the third war against Spain for their independence. US arrived to the war in 1898, after the Maine's explosion. Very wise when Cubans had ...
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602 views

In current times is it impossible to win a war if the people of invaded country are determined not to lose? [closed]

When the United States lost the Vietnam war, the Vietnamese showed another face of war: With a big difference of power, the weaker country can win. This is happening again in Afghanistan and in ...
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3answers
452 views

Are there wars still going on, but officially ended? (found two) [closed]

I am curious if are there any wars still going on because of anomalies of diplomacy like the following examples: Rome vs. Carthage, 264BC - 1985AD, Since Carthage was destroyed, there were no ...
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648 views

Throughout history, how many wars have there been between Russia and Japan?

Do both countries have a particluar hot spot that existed in the past, and if so, does it still exist now? Have their wars historically been bloody or transient, and are they now considered "friends"? ...
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199 views

Why did Syria intervene in favour of the Maronites during the Lebanese Civil War?

From pg. 382, A History of the Modern Middle East by Martin Bunton and William Cleveland "The [Lebanese Civil War] was expanded and then brought temporarily to an end by Syrian intervention. In ...
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Why did Spain trade Florida to the British in exchagne for Havana?

In 1763, Spain traded Florida to Great Britain in exchange for control of Havana, Cuba, which had been captured by the British during the Seven Years' War. wikipedia Why did Spain trade Florida ...
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239 views

Medical personnel fighting on the battlefield

How common was it for Red Cross medical personnel to take part in military action on the battlefields (in both World Wars)? How was this received by the combatants (friendly and enemy)? The question ...
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1answer
220 views

What killed Takeda Shingen?

What killed Takeda Shingen? A sniper's bullet? Illness? Old wounds? A combination of the above? Why is the cause of his death shrouded in mystery? Did the Takeda try and keep his death secret or ...
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1answer
299 views

How was Takeda defeated at the Battle of Nagashino?

The 1575 Battle of Nagashino resulted in the eventual end of the Takenda clan during the sengoku jidai in Japan. In the movie "Kagemusha", the Takeda cavalry charges guns and is devastated. The ...
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2answers
391 views

When did the Pakistan army used tank for the first time during the 1971 Bangladesh war?

I would like to know the first recorded case of usage of tank in the Bangladesh war which took place in 1971.
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132 views

Why was Luodian important in the Battle of Shanghai?

In the middle of the 3-month long Battle of Shanghai, the small town of Luodian on the outskirts of Shanghai saw some of the heaviest fighting. After Japanese troops made successful amphibious ...
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77 views

Master title for fencing

When and where did the practice of calling either a fencing teacher or a great swordsman "master" originates from? I am interested mainly in European primary sources, the older the better.
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108 views

Would Wright's attack on Cemetery Ridge have succeeded if Posey had covered Wright's Left Flank?

On the Second Day of the Battle of Gettysburg, the Third Confederate Brigade under Brig. Gen. Ambrose Wright (serving under Anderson's Division) charged from Seminary Ridge into Union forces holding ...