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Author Topic: The military history thread  (Read 11411 times)

LeeC

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Re: The military history thread
« Reply #100 on: 26 Jun 2015, 04:46 »

Chesapeake–Leopard Affair

Looks like the Brits did fire first.
« Last Edit: 26 Jun 2015, 05:00 by LeeC »
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The Seldom Killer

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Re: The military history thread
« Reply #101 on: 26 Jun 2015, 05:22 »

Someone always has to fire first, that doesn't make it unprovoked. The Chesapeake had refused to turn over deserters wanted on a warrant. Overreaction would maybe be a better description.
To be fair, unprovoked is usually a misleading term of propoganda that glosses over the nuances of the situation that it is supposed to describe.
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Re: The military history thread
« Reply #102 on: 26 Jun 2015, 06:15 »

Did the "warrant" have any legal validity in the United States of America?
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Re: The military history thread
« Reply #103 on: 26 Jun 2015, 06:24 »

Not sure what the cross border legal arrangements would have been at that time and can only imagine that military and naval agreements might only serve to complicate rather than clarify matters. I'm not sure whether  However, the presence of a warrant indicates that the Captain of the Leopard wasn't acting unilaterally which might impact on how a diplomatic resolution may have played out. The Captain of the Chesapeake apparently ruled that out by acting unilaterally though.
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Akima

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Re: The military history thread
« Reply #104 on: 26 Jun 2015, 06:58 »

However, the presence of a warrant indicates that the Captain of the Leopard wasn't acting unilaterally
I am not certain that you are using the word "unilaterally" correctly. A unilateral act is not one performed without authority. A unilateral act is simply one undertaken by or on behalf of one side, or party only, without the agreement or involvement of any other. The warrant was certainly issued unilaterally, so it provides no shield to defend the captain of the Leopard from an accusation of acting unilaterally, I think.
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LeeC

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Re: The military history thread
« Reply #105 on: 26 Jun 2015, 07:10 »

If you were a captain of a ship off the coast of your own nation and some other country's ship comes up beside you and demand to arrest some of your sailors based on a piece of paper from their own country, how would you react in the age of sail?  I'd a tell them to fuck off and tell them to contact US fleet command and have them take my sailors.

Mind you my comment is not based in patriotism. I'd think the British would do the exact same thing if a Russian ship did that to them off the coast of Australia.  Especially back before wireless instant communication was available to check with your superiors on the validity of the document.
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Re: The military history thread
« Reply #106 on: 26 Jun 2015, 07:20 »

Yes, an inappropriate use the word.

I was intending to mean whether that, in respect to their actions, both Captain's acted independently without recourse to the broader authorities to which they were responsible.

Yes, warrants are issued unilaterally. Arrest warrants aren't really ever issued by one country on behalf of another. The existence of the warrant would have demonstrated that the Captain of the Leopard was operating under the auspices of a military order and thus not of his own agency.
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The Seldom Killer

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Re: The military history thread
« Reply #107 on: 26 Jun 2015, 07:30 »

If you were a captain of a ship off the coast of your own nation and some other country's ship comes up beside you and demand to arrest some of your sailors based on a piece of paper from their own country, how would you react in the age of sail?  I'd a tell them to fuck off and tell them to contact US fleet command and have them take my sailors.

Mind you my comment is not based in patriotism. I'd think the British would do the exact same thing if a Russian ship did that to them off the coast of Australia.  Especially back before wireless instant communication was available to check with your superiors on the validity of the document.

I think you misunderstand the contexts of that age. Sailors weren't hired with the submission of a CV, a round of interviews, a criminal records check and the taking up of references. Desertion in those times were regarded as an act of treason and that was akin to murder. If you were presented with a warrant of arrest on an accusation that, for example, a member of your crew had murdered the quartermaster of their former vessel, you probably would have happily turned them over regardless of the provenance of the warrant. To protect an accused murderer would have severely compromised your authority as a captain which on, on a ship, would prove disasterous. You couldn't afford the mistrust such an act would engender in your crew. At the very least you would have turned the accused over to the authority of the naval offices on shore to allow them to wrangle the case while you carried on with the important business of sailing your ship as commanded.
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LeeC

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Re: The military history thread
« Reply #108 on: 26 Jun 2015, 07:56 »

I understand what you are saying, but I still disagree.  As Captain of a military vessel everyone on board is your charge.  Having a foreign military vessel demand some of your sailors shows lack of loyalty and lose face to your own crew.  On that note, it is also considered a criminal act to hand over troops/sailors to a foreign vessel without proper permission from you own military high command.  Considering their warrant was signed by British MHC instead of US MHC it would have been wrong for him to do so.

As far as desertion, I do not think the USA commander, nor his crew would have felt the deserters were on the same rung as murderers considering they deserted one military to join theirs.  Especially if they have been top notch crew members aboard your vessel (I am not saying that was the case, this is more or less in general).  On top of that, the USA needed sailors for their fledgling navy so any experienced military sailors would probably have been welcomed.

Now I do not know what words were exchanged between the 2 commanding officers, and the British were in a state of war which makes unilateral decisions necessary, but the fact that they both didn't just pull into Norfolk's port (one of the US navy's HQ) and discuss it with the High Command seems silly.  Sure the French where in port too but its neutral ground.

I am not saying the Commodore wasn't at fault (hell he was relieved of duty, though probably more for surrendering without a fight), but the British Captain is not absolved.  Maybe they both fought in the American War of Independence as young sailors and still had animosity towards the other, or maybe the American officer was too arrogant and the British officer was too hot headed, regardless this could have been resolved without a shot fired.

I think it also came down to the feeling each country had for the other at the time.  USA didn't feel like their sovereignty was really recognized by the UK and they were being trampled on.  I can't say how the UK felt towards USA at the time.  Oh Napoleonic Wars, how crazy it was.
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LeeC

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Re: The military history thread
« Reply #109 on: 05 Jul 2015, 19:34 »

Was reading a post on Australian History on imgur .  I had no idea Australia and New Zealand were also combatants in the Vietnam War.  I knew about the South Koreans and Thailand's military involvement but not them.
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Re: The military history thread
« Reply #110 on: 06 Jul 2015, 00:18 »

Yup

NZ mostly, I think, sent a couple of Batteries and a few ground troops.


Got the same reception here when they got back that the vets got in both the U.S. and Aussie
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Re: The military history thread
« Reply #111 on: 08 Jul 2015, 02:32 »

I had no idea Australia and New Zealand were also combatants in the Vietnam War.
Oh yes, though you'd never think so from popular media depictions of the Vietnam War. It was very divisive in Australia, drove a stake through the heart of conscription here, and is commemorated in song:
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LeeC

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Re: The military history thread
« Reply #114 on: 20 Dec 2015, 13:25 »

If you have not, check out Dan Carlin's Hardcore History Podcast. http://www.dancarlin.com/hardcore-history-series/
« Last Edit: 22 Dec 2015, 14:18 by doombilly »
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Re: The military history thread
« Reply #115 on: 18 Jan 2016, 22:11 »

I'm not entirely sure where to put this as it's an article about PTSD in the military, but it's a good (but depressing) read.

http://www.cracked.com/personal-experiences-2044-my-husband-war-vet-with-ptsd-5-things-ive-learned.html

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