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Carthaginian Armies

February 3, 2019 — Leave a comment

Weapons and Warfare

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Hannibal and his staff at the battle of Zama – art by Giuseppe Rava

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The Carthaginian army has a mix of all kinds of troops, because of his high proportion of, Spanish and African allies.

The Carthaginians relied heavily on mercenaries. Polybius (6.52.4) believed the Roman army was superior to the Carthaginian because Rome fielded armies of citizens while Carthage employed foreign mercenaries. The most famous mercenaries employed by the Carthaginians were the Numidian horsemen. Equipped with light leather shields (Sall. Iug. 94.1), they would sometimes fight from two horses, to prolong the stamina of their mounts (Livy 23.29.5). However, in its earlier wars with the Greeks, Carthage relied also on its own citizen forces. Plutarch (Tim. 27-9) notes that at the battle of the River Crimisus in 341, the 10,000 Carthaginian hoplites were equipped with iron cuirasses, bronze helmets and large whiteshields, and were drawn up as a phalanx…

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I haven’t been writing my own pieces much as of late so I’ve decided to make a more concerted effort to write original thoughts and posts in the future.

 

That being said lets discuss the current happenings on the geopolitical stage. The US along with allies France and Great Britain decided on punitive action via surgical strike against the forces of Bashar al-Assad in response to a chemical attack that took place there. Many took to social media to either show their clear enjoyment with the proceedings particular the news media who thrive off this sort of coverage. Others seemed to have this hyperbolic reaction which appears so common place in today’s political discourse where things must be taken to an extreme length. And there were those that condemned the attack either due to principles or more self serving motivations for not supporting such endeavors. I will try to address all the different viewpoints.

Firstly nothing in the past 24 hours has suggested that the conflict will as of yet escalate to world war or even simply war proportions as of yet. No leader has suggested the utilization of ground forces or that the air strikes will be continuous so long as Assad doesn’t further employ the use of chemical weaponry. Therefore I feel that calls for world war three are simple hyperbole. In today’s discourse everything is a call back to some momentous historical event. Everything is the next civil rights movement or everything is the next prelude to a new world war. This is utter nonsense and illogical. Moreover the strikes carry minimal risk due to advanced weaponry and the knowledge that Russia and Iran won’t counter in direct action because 1. they can’t and 2. it would be foolish.

I have much more sympathy for those who question such action because of their principles either they are against armed conflict under most circumstances or they simply want more information on the planned military actions before they occur. I empathize with both since governments are known to practice withholding information from the public. I too believe that governments should be more transparent on these matters. However if the action is limited, the evidence is clear, and the conflict is not escalated then I feel that the actions are perfectly reasonable and can be supported.

Here are some figures from the strike: US Tomahawk launch count: Cruiser Monterey: 30 Destroyer Laboon: 7 Destroyer Higgins: 23 Submarine John Warner: 6 Additionally: JASSMs launched by B1B bombers. Missiles additionally launched from French Frigate Aquitaine, French Jets and UK Jets. Syrian forces fired close to 40 counter missiles but did so in an ineffective and ineffective manner.

Delivering and Receiving Fire

Qui desiderat pacem praeparet bellum (Let him who desires peace prepare for war)

Vegetius

Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori. (It is a sweet and seemly thing to die for one’s country.)

Horace

The American public along with the media are a hilarious bunch of hypocritical imbeciles to witness in action. Take these two examples: 

Old man gets illegally recorded and leaked to the media some un-politically correct statements. End result: Forced to sell business.

Now for the next scenario. Not as old man breaks the law he signed not even a year ago. Trades for a deserter who abandoned his fellow comrades in a war zone in exchange for 5 key opposition leaders. End result: Apologizes and says he won’t do it again. 

This is the America I love. The one who tries to out-outrage everyone and cares about the things that are trivial. While true that in the US Military we don’t leave someone behind, the circumstances of this deserter  make that line of reasoning fallacious. He wasn’t captured under heroic circumstances defending his fellow comrades in arms he left on his own accord. In more civilized times he would have been put to death for his actions.