Questions tagged [war]

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

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1answer
126 views

In Tolstoy's War and Peace, one character is captured after the Battle of Austerlitz and is taken as a POW. Was his experience historically accurate?

Prince Andrei Bolkonsky is captured after sustaining a wound in battle and is taken as a POW. He, along with other officers of the Russian Army, were treated with care and respect by the French, and ...
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17answers
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Was Switzerland really impossible to invade during WW2?

My question is not about an alternative scenario, nor about the reasons that caused Switzerland to not get invaded (as could be seen here: Why was Switzerland not attacked during the two World Wars?). ...
7
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1answer
351 views

What kind of bullet did I find in Swiss glacial ice?

I found this bullet frozen in glacial ice in Switzerland. There is no visible stamp on it anymore and unfortunately did not have any precise measuring equipment with me. I can measure the size of my ...
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3answers
331 views

What factors explain Indian territorial restraint towards Pakistani occupied Kashmir despite military success against Pakistan?

It would seem that the Indian army managed on three separate occasions to beat its Pakistani opposite, but did not press these advantages by occupying the Pakistani portion of Kashmir. The three ...
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0answers
107 views

What was China's claim line in the Aksai Chin before the 1962 war?

The original mutually agreeable boundary seems to have been the McCartney-MacDonald line since the late 1890s. In the 1910s and 1920s China seems to have accepted even the Johnson line, by publishing ...
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2answers
592 views

Why did conquered countries after WWII recover, but countries conquered later continue suffering? [closed]

Nations damaged severely in WWII (suffered major economic collapse and civilian casualties) such as Japan, Germany and Poland have not only recovered but are doing better than ever before. Most of ...
6
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1answer
372 views

Why did the later Crusades seemingly focus more on naval traversal?

I was studying some general Crusade maps and I noticed the first crusades seemed to be more land based as compared to the latter ones and I was wondering exactly why that was (besides just changing ...
7
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1answer
246 views

Why might one think that Australia gained independence from the UK in December 1920?

I'm looking at a dataset claims that Australia gained independence from the UK in December 1920.† I found this puzzling and this could very well just be a mistake. But I'm wondering if there's any ...
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1answer
92 views

Did any UK declaration of war extend automatically to Australia?

On 1939-09-03, the UK declared war on Germany and Australia did the same. A New Zealand government website claims: In contrast to its entry into the First World War, New Zealand acted in its own ...
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0answers
111 views

Why was the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo signed there?

The Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo which ended the Mexican-American War was signed "at the main altar of the old Basilica of Guadalupe", or possibly in an adjacent building. This is a major Catholic ...
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0answers
98 views

What was the most expensive war of the 20th century? [closed]

Putting aside the enormous "cost" of wars in terms of human life and suffering, what about the economic costs? Once I studied the Vietnam war and Gabriel Kolko in one of his books described how much ...
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1answer
121 views

Did a war occured because one country did not want the other to be strong? [closed]

About the Napoleonic wars, I discussed with a friend who told me that the English just wanted France to be weak, and that it was the reason for the Congress of Vienna in 1815. I have read on the ...
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69 views

Pakistani point of view on the Liberation War of Bangladesh

Being a Bangladeshi, it has been difficult to know the Pakistani view of the Liberation War in 1971. What their exact goal was, how they intended to achieve this goal, what resources they had and how ...
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2answers
324 views

Was there ever a democracy where the three branches went to war?

I was thinking yesterday about the three branches of democracy: The legislative branch, the executive branch and the judicial branch. The idea is that each has limited responsibility and powers, and ...
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3answers
241 views

What is the origin of the practice of burying the dead where they fall, in the British armed forces? [closed]

According to this entry on Wikipedia, the British armed forces traditionally bury their dead where they fall. What is the origin of this practice, does it still take place and how common is it ...
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1answer
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The most awesome army: 80 men left and 81 returned. Is it true?

On this wikipedia page, I read the funny story of the Lichtenstein's army, which should have at least earned the title of the "most friendly army in the world". I am not a historian, and I have no ...
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4answers
1k views

Why did the Korean War result in a stalemate?

In the Korean War, the United Nations forces lead by the US held overwhelming military and technological superiority over the Chinese. Even with the initial set back from the Chinese ambush AFTER the ...
8
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1answer
276 views

Why didn’t the U.S. annex the entire Spanish East Indies at the end of the Spanish-American War?

The Spanish East Indies were a large territory comprising mainly the Philippines,1 plus a large scattering of Micronesian islands in four main groups (the Marianas, the Carolines, the Marshalls,2 and ...
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1answer
252 views

Why Vladimir Ilyich Lenin is so popular in Russian?

Recently I have seen a documentary film from "Star Media" (this is Russian film) called "The first world war". Up to this moment, I thought that the February Revolution had happened, because there was ...
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2answers
256 views

When did Mesoamericans stop using their native weapons?

Indigenous warriors of today's Mexico used atlatl spear-throwers and obsidian-bladed hand weapons such as tepoztopilli and macuahuitl. According to Bernal Díaz del Castillo, these arms were formidable ...
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4answers
1k views

What was the last profitable war? [closed]

I was having a conversation with family and friends this weekend and this question came up: "what was the last profitable war?" Of course in history there were wars that turned a profit, ones I can ...
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1answer
331 views

Why did Ancient Greek city-states fight each other and how did they morally justify it? [closed]

I'm curious about why the different city-states in Ancient Greece fought war against each other and how did their leaders motivate their people to take up arms, leave their families and farms and go ...
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2answers
344 views

Could medieval soldiers be organized into a Roman style legion order of battle?

Is there any reason why medieval soldiers could not have been organized into the order of battle of the Roman Empire by a ruler or empire that chose to do so? Integrating crossbowmen, longbowmen, ...
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5answers
447 views

Has there been a war in which the South conquered the North?

There've been many wars in which the side known as the "North" conquered the one known as the "South", e.g.: Three Kingdoms period in China: the Northern kingdom conquered the two Southern ones The ...
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1answer
301 views

Why were the Soviets better at replacing their lost men and material? [duplicate]

Battle of Kursk is considered a Soviet decisive victory, no doubt it was the last major German offensive at the Eastern front. But why so? Casualties indicate the Soviets suffered 1 million ...
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2answers
211 views

What anti-Japanese guerrilla units were active in Manchuria from 1944-1945?

I am writing a historical fiction novel with a North Korean protagonist joining anti-Japanese guerrilla forces in Manchuria in 1944. I understand that major anti-Japanese resistance in Manchuria was ...
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5answers
13k views

Has there ever been an instance of an active nuclear power plant within or near a war zone?

The question Has there ever been a military combat going on around an active (running or in outage but not decommissioned) commercial nuclear power plant? Or dangerously near it? If yes, how did the ...
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6answers
903 views

Has any war in recorded history ever resulted in the complete annihilation (civil and military) of an enemy - all of them killed with no survivors?

Question In reviewing the Wiki topic on War of annihilation it is clear that there have been several examples (many of them in recent history) wherein the goal of a war was to utterly destroy an ...
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2answers
242 views

Has an encirclement ever succeeded with numerically inferior cavalry?

This is a follow up to my previous question. In all the examples given there was some other advantage that decided the battle and not encirclement. For example at Narva They attacked inexperienced ...
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2answers
524 views

Why did General Billy Mitchell regard war with Japan as inevitable as early as 1912?

llama stated in Comments about General Billy Mitchell's observation from March 1912 after touring Russo Japanese War Battle Fields, "war between the United States and Japan is inevitable". @llama ...
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7answers
9k views

Was Japan known to be a potential threat to the USA in the 10 year period prior to 1941

In the years leading up to the Pearl Harbor attack, did non-military Americans see Japan as a potential threat to the USA?
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1answer
242 views

Did people ever pour drinks on the floor to reject a toast or indicate an end to civilities?

In a fantasy book called "Jack of Shadows" by Roger Zelazny I read this: A disgraced member of a ruling party is being forced to ceremonially drink to the coronation of the new king, but instead ...
117
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7answers
33k views

Do historians agree that most wars are caused by religion?

I'm not a historian, but this is a very common claim that crops up in debates over God's existence and religious scripture. What is the opinion of the community of professional historians?
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2answers
5k views

Was Nixon's Vietnam claim right before the 1968 election true?

In Richard Nixon's final appeal to voters on NBC right before the 1968 Presidential Election, he made an explosive claim about the Vietnam war. Here is how the Eugene Register-Guard reported it: [...
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0answers
108 views

What was the troop ratio between the red and white army in the Russian revolution?

I am making a game over the Russian Revolution for English class. I want to make this game a somewhat accurate representation of the Russian Revolution. I have been able find the answers to all of my ...
2
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1answer
300 views

How could Germany afford waging WWII? [duplicate]

I have been asked on several occasions how could Germany afford to start such a big war as WWII. Of course, they mean multiple aspects such money and other actors (countries) allowing it. Also, ...
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2answers
6k views

What pretext did Hitler use to justify Operation Barbarossa?

At the beginning of WW2, Nazi Germany orchestrated the infamous Gleiwitz Incident, which was used by Hitler to publicly declare, that since 5:45 we are returning fire. The invasion of Poland ...
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1answer
2k views

What does “setting up a trophy” mean in ancient Greece 5th century B.C.?

I'm reading Thucydides' The Peloponnesian War and time and a gain armies are said to "set up a trophy" on a site. What does that mean? What was concretely done at the site where a trophy was set up? ...
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4answers
441 views

Battles where baits are overlooked by the enemy in expense of the baiter

In battles, often military deception is used to bait the enemy into thinking that a certain move will be made, forcing them to act accordingly and attack from an unexpected angle. Intuitively, I would ...
48
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2answers
6k views

How were tanks scrapped after World War Two?

Both Axis & Allied nations produced thousands of tanks during the Second World War. However, not many of these vehicles survive to this day (there are exceptions of course). When reading about the ...
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1answer
277 views

How many vehicles were involved in Operation Gothic Serpent (Mogadishu, October 3-4, 1993)?

I wanted to know how many vehicles (include their model and which country used it), aircraft and infantry were deployed in Operation Gothic Serpent in Mogadishu in October 1993. Specific numbers of: ...
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1answer
156 views

Was The Great Game a war? [closed]

I know that The Great Game was between UK & Russia and done through parts of Asia, Middle East & Europe. I was wondering if the Great Game was basically two empires trying fighting each other ...
2
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1answer
301 views

What prevented the Indian Army to wrest Kashmir from Pakistan despite the UN Security Council's resolutions of 1948-49?

In August 1947, when the British partitioned their Indian colony into two countries of India and Pakistan, the state of Kashmir was being ruled by a Hari Singh one of whose ancestor, named Gulab Singh,...
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3answers
565 views

World War I Britain supplies cut

I was watching a documentary regarding World War I and one of the things that was depicted was how the commercial trade was cut off from Germany by England blocking the sea which resulted in Germany ...
2
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1answer
527 views

How did the Filipinos lose the Philippine-American War? [closed]

The Americans were fighting a war thousands of miles away from their country, against the Filipinos who just won a war of independence against Spain. Change the Filipinos to Vietnamese and Spain to ...
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0answers
163 views

Can you identify this military uniform? Montana 1850-1920

Portrait taken in Montana-best guess between 1850 and 1920. WWI?? Slouch hat. Single-breasted coat with 5 or 6 buttons. Breast pocket on each side; diagonal, flap with button. Knee-high boots. Curvy ...
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3answers
245 views

Has any ideology ever had an internal war?

Democracies are alleged to never declare war on each other. Is this true for any ideology? No Stalinist states have ever fought each other? No maoist states have fought each other? No fascist states? ...
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1answer
979 views

How many officers on board Type VII-C U-boat? [closed]

As the topic states I am curious of how many offiers were on board a type VII-C U-boat during WW2. I know the crew size was typically 42 to 48, but what was the breakdown of the crew? Bonus points ...
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1answer
78 views

Is/was it an Indonesian tradition or custom to drink your victims' blood?

In Joshua Oppenheimer's The Look of Silence (2014) (sequel to The Act of Killing [2012]), at least two of the killers speak (rather casually and openly) about drinking the blood of victims. They said ...
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2answers
324 views

Are there any surviving military textbooks from the Napoleonic era?

Napoleon attended school for military officers, so it stands to reason they would have some books around which they based their curriculum. Are there any complete and publicly available recordings of ...