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Thread: The Guerrilla

  1. #1
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    Default The Guerrilla

    As you notice....I ahve changed the title of this subforum. Some discussion is in order. Definitions.


    Guerrilla warfare is a form of irregular warfare and refers to conflicts in which a small group of combatants including, but not limited to, armed civilians (or "irregulars") use military tactics, such as ambushes, sabotage, raids, the element of surprise, and extraordinary mobility to harass a larger and less-mobile traditional army, or strike a vulnerable target, and withdraw almost immediately.

    The term means "little war" in Spanish, and the word, guerrilla, has been used to describe the concept since the 18th century, and perhaps earlier. The term guerrilla' was used within the English language as early as 1809. The word was used to describe the fighters, and their tactics (e.g."the town was taken by the guerrillas"). However, in most languages guerrilla still denotes the specific style of warfare.

    The use of the diminutive evokes the differences in number, scale, and scope between the guerrilla army and the formal, professional army of the state.
    Gabriel Suarez

    Turning Lambs into Lions Since 1995

    Suarez International USA Headquarters

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    The strategy and tactics of guerrilla warfare tend to focus around the use of a small, mobile force competing against a larger, more unwieldy one. The guerrilla focuses on organizing in small units, depending on the support of the local population, as well as taking advantage of terrain more accommodating of small units.

    Tactically, the guerrilla army would avoid any confrontation with large units of enemy troops, but seek and eliminate small groups of soldiers to minimize losses and exhaust the opposing force. Not limiting their targets to personnel, enemy resources are also preferred targets. All of that is to weaken the enemy's strength, to cause the enemy eventually to be unable to prosecute the war any longer, and to force the enemy to withdraw.

    It is often misunderstood that guerrilla warfare must involve disguising as civilians to cause enemy troops to fail in telling friend from foe. However, this is a not a primary feature of a guerrilla war. This type of war can be practiced anywhere there are places for combatants to cover themselves and where such advantage cannot be made use of by a larger and more conventional force.

    While the tactics of modern guerrilla warfare originate in the 20th century, irregular warfare, using elements later characteristic of modern guerrilla warfare, has existed throughout the battles of many ancient civilizations but in a smaller scale.

    This recent growth was inspired in part by theoretical works on guerrilla warfare, starting with the Manual de Guerra de Guerrillas by Matías Ramón Mella written in the XIXth century and, more recently, Mao Zedong's On Guerrilla Warfare, Che Guevara's Guerrilla Warfare and Lenin's text of the same name, all written after the successful revolutions carried by them in China, Cuba and Russia respectively.
    Gabriel Suarez

    Turning Lambs into Lions Since 1995

    Suarez International USA Headquarters

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    Guerrilla warefare can be traced back to Sun Tzu, in his The Art of War. An early example during the American Revolution was when British General John Burgoyne referred to the American Patriots using this type of warfare during the Saratoga campaign. He noted that, in proceeding through dense woodland:

    The enemy is infinitely inferior to the King’s Troop in open space, and hardy combat, is well fitted by disposition and practice, for the stratagems of enterprises of Little War...upon the same principle must be a constant rule, in or near woods to place advanced sentries, where they may have a tree or some other defense to prevent their being taken off by a single marksman.

    Nonetheless, the Peninsular War, nicknamed the Spanish Ulcer and regarded by some historians, including Karl Marx, as one of the first national wars, is also significant for the emergence of large-scale guerrilla warfare. It is from this conflict that the English language borrowed the word.

    This war saw British and Portuguese forces using Portugal as a secure position to launch campaigns against the French army, while Spanish guerrilleros bled the occupiers.

    Gates notes that much of the French army "was rendered unavailable for operations against Wellington because innumerable Spanish contingents kept materialising all over the country. In 1810, for example, when Massena invaded Portugal, the Imperial forces in the Peninsula totaled a massive 325,000 men, but only about one quarter of these could be spared for the offensive—the rest were required to contain the Spanish insurgents and regulars. This was the greatest single contribution that the Spaniards were to make and, without it, Wellington could not have maintained himself on the continent for long—let alone emerge victorious from the conflict". Combined, the regular and irregular allied forces prevented Napoleon's Marshals from subduing the rebellious Spanish provinces.

    Marx and Engels wrote about other examples of guerrilla warfare during the American Civil War, by Tyrolians and Prussians against Napoleon, by Poland and the Caucasus against Imperial Russia, Pegu (Burma) against the British Empire.
    Gabriel Suarez

    Turning Lambs into Lions Since 1995

    Suarez International USA Headquarters

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    So, it is "about time" to call a spade a spade as I did with the sniper classes. 90% of my students are private citizens and graduates can attest to the plain fact that we do things differently in our courses. Ask them.

    Threaded through the fibers is the theme of the guerrilla...the civilian fighter that through history has been left no alternative but to grab a rifle and make his will stick against the occupiers.

    For a doctor...or a stock broker...or a school teacher, to train like a big city SWAT operator, or a US Marine makes little sense since neither his mission, weapons, or logistics support such tactics. Instead, we look at irregular forces through history and emulate their conceptual applications and tactics in our courses.

    We have ZERO POLITICAL MOTIVATIONS and anyone coming to class flaunting them will be summarily asked to leave....maybe not so politely. The only thing we are interested in over throwing is a nice glass of Merlot over dinner. So anti-gov types need not apply.

    We look at the study in the same way as a man studying the classic japanese sword...or a western man studying the spanish school of the sword. We do because we can...with no ulterior motives.

    Why did I make these clarifications? Because it was time to unify the school concept...because you guys asked for it...and because being a Spaniard by heritage and a Cuban by birth...it is in my blood.
    Last edited by Gabriel Suarez; 11-02-2011 at 12:02 PM.
    Gabriel Suarez

    Turning Lambs into Lions Since 1995

    Suarez International USA Headquarters

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    I thought I would mention the boer kommandos of the 2nd boer war that I believe started out as militia and by using mauser and other rifles by skilled marksman gave the british forces a very hard time of it. They were ultimately defeated by massive numbers of british troops and modern improvements in transportation and communications along with their families being rounded up into concentration camps. Perhaps there might be some lessons to learn from their tactics and also the tactics that the british employed to defeat them.
    Picture shows Boer Kommandos
    One who hammers his gun into a plow plows for those who do not....Unknown
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    A study of Mosby's Rangers of Fauqueir County Va would be beneficial ...some would argue he was Americas first Special Forces Unit (serving in the south) and some would call him a Guerilla Warfare practitioner.

    There is an excellent book about him by Jeffrey D Wert, Mosby's Rangers, available that entails is life and operations during the civil war where he regularly operated behind enemy lines often within Washington DC itself.

    No single battalion was more feared during the Civil War than the 43rd Battalion of Virginia Cavalry. As one contemporary said, "They had...all the glamour of Robin Hood...all the courage and bravery of the ancient crusaders." Better known as Mosby's Rangers, they were an elite guerilla unit that operated with stunning success in northern Virginia and Maryland from 1863 to the last days of the war.


    There was also a short lived TV series called the "Gray Ghost" about his exploits.


    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_S._Mosby

    http://www.historicmosbysrangers.org/


    CRG-Suarez International Combat Pistol Instructor

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  7. #7
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    We can add Roger's rangers....an irregular unit
    Nathan Bedford Forrest and his men
    The "Underground" during urban WW2 Europe
    The Filipinos fighting the Japanese
    Various irregular forces in WW2
    The various "bad guy" rebellion forces during the 1950s and 60s
    The Balkans

    What they all have in common is what the sort of training for the private citizen should address.
    Gabriel Suarez

    Turning Lambs into Lions Since 1995

    Suarez International USA Headquarters

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    Interesting development... Kinda sets SI apart from the crowd, and in my opinion, much makes it more worthy of my time and money.


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    There are also number of guerrilla tactics used by the opposing side during past conflicts and wars that are worthy of consideration and study.
    We don't have to agree with the politics or "the cause" in order to evaluate the effectiveness of a particular guerrilla tactic or approach.
    Last edited by paranoid; 10-31-2011 at 08:56 AM.
    Paul

    Those who beat their swords into plowshares will plow for those who do not.

  10. #10
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    When I began my studies in this area, I looked at tactics and eliminated any and all political issues. It is clear that we can in fact learn from the bad guys...to discount a tactic because the "bad guys" used it is as silly as using only what the well-supplied "good guys" use.
    Gabriel Suarez

    Turning Lambs into Lions Since 1995

    Suarez International USA Headquarters

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