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 Durnford was he capable.2

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Chelmsfordthescapegoat

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sun Sep 30, 2012 10:41 pm

On the 22nd Jan 1879, He provoked the Zulus into attacking, and weaken the camp bu leaving...
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6pdr

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sun Sep 30, 2012 11:49 pm

You do have a way of undercutting your own argument. Let us restrict ourselves to his record in S. Africa which is the context relevant to this discussion.

Chelmsfordthescapegoat wrote:
" ]In May he was posted back to Pietermaritzburg, Natal, where Durnford befriended the controversial John William Colenso, Bishop of Natal, and his daughter Frances, with whom he later, allegedly, began a romantic affair.  He found he shared the same views as Colenso toward the native population and promoted and supported their interests whenever he could.  His sympathies would inspire fierce loyalty among the African troops he was to command. 

Colenso was mostly "controversial" from the POV of the Church based on religious doctrine. He was in no way disloyal to Natal, England or any other political entity. It was his right as an Englilshman to befriend the bishop and that friendship eventually worked to the advantage of Natal and the British Army. As I have said before, the Edendale troop, which performed MAGNIFICENTLY throughout the battle, were in most ways the direct byproduct of the work of Colenso's mission. And learning to speak the local languages is indeed what made Durnford such a logical choice to raise and train native units for Chelmsford's army...which was desperately short of skirmishers and cavalry.


Chelmsfordthescapegoat wrote:
In August 1873 he was attached to the staff of Natal’s Secretary for Native Affairs, Theophilus Shepstone, on his coronation mission into Zululand and was the senior British officer at King Cetshwayo’s coronation on 1.9.1873.  In October of that year he was appointed Chief of Staff by Lieutenant-Colonel Milles in an expedition against a rumoured native uprising of the amaHlubi led by its chief Langalibalele.  As part of the expedition, Durnford was expected to hold Bushman’s River Pass and prevent the chief’s escape. On 4.11.1873 Durnford and his men were caught in an ambush there in which he suffered an assegai wound and lost the use of his left arm. 

Note the reference to being present at King Cetshwayo's coronation. Are you sure you don't to accuse him of collaborating with the enemy? Oh, that's right...Cetshwayo was a loyal friend of Britain at that time...so, hmm...maybe he was just doing his duty. And then of course losing his arm trying to stop Langalibalele from taking his guns through the mountains is highly suspicious...if by suspicious you mean over zealously trying to discharge his duty.

Chelmsfordthescapegoat wrote:
1874 saw Durnford active in blocking passes in the Drakensberg range in an attempt to contain the amaHlubi and to prevent any Basuto incursion in sympathy.
Oops...there he goes again...doing his duty. 

Chelmsfordthescapegoat wrote:
On 10.10.1875 he was replaced by a subordinate as Acting Colonial Engineer largely because of his outspoken views on native affairs and confederation. 
He arrived in Pietermaritzburg on the 23rd March.  Shepstone was about to annex the Transvaal and Durnford was sent up to Newcastle on 10th April.  On the 11th on his own initiative he moved on to Pretoria in the Transvaal only to find on his arrival on the 15th that the annexation had taken place on the 12th.  He was then asked to ensure that the British forces at Newcastle were brought up to Pretoria.  After this he returned to Pietermaritzburg on the 26th.  Between February and June 1878 he sat on the Zulu Boundary Commission which found in favour of the Zulu.

Loyally doing his duty yet again. Really, he is incorrigible like that. Now, let's talk about his "outspoken views on native affairs and confederation." First, it seems to me (and every reputable historian) that Durnford was on the RIGHT side of history here...that Frere's war was a cynical put-up job engineered by a rank imperialist. But if you still hold that it was a good thing the British Army invaded a sovereign nation/kingdom on trumped up nonsense, there's also the yellow highlighted part we must grapple with today...namely that despite his outspoken views he was put on the Boundary Commission, which to the utter astonishment of Shepstone and Frere actually chose (again) to do what was right and just and ethical...and find IN FAVOR OF THE ZULU. Yet despite this setback to the pernicious doctrine known as "confederation," Durnford was not clapped in irons or otherwise punished or scapegoated by anyone in the British establishment at that time. Quite the reverse, in fact...as you document below:

Chelmsfordthescapegoat wrote:
 In July he was asked to put forward plans for bridging the Tugela River – clearly viewed by his superiors as having import in the event of any future military action in Zululand.  In addition he recommended the formation of a Natal Native Pioneer Corps – two companies were raised by October despite the opposition of the Lieutenant-Governor of Natal who saw arming natives as a dangerous exercise. Ultimately three regiments of a Natal Native Contingent were also raised for skirmishing and scouting purposes (Durnford was given command of the 1st Regiment N.N.C.) besides six troops of Natal Native Horse.  On 11.12.1878 he was promoted Brevet Colonel though he may not have been aware of this promotion at the time of his death.  In the 1879 Zulu War he was the commander of No. 2 Column invading Zululand.

More of that damnable Durnford doing his duty, thinking ahead, and being handed more responsibility as a result. In fact, one might say the man was a glutton for punishment where it came to discharging his responsibility. And that is why he chose to stand and hold the nek open as long as he could rather than ride off on the magnificent horse he kept. He died a hero's death with the men who were so much supposed to despise him rallying to his leadership instead. Scurilous!
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Dave

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sun Sep 30, 2012 11:57 pm

And the points you highlight, gives the reasons why LC Probaly wanted to keep an eye on him.
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6pdr

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Mon Oct 01, 2012 12:02 am

Dave wrote:
And the points you highlight, gives the reasons why LC Probaly wanted to keep an eye on him.

No Dave...they are the reason why YOU would want to keep an eye on him.
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impi

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Mon Oct 01, 2012 12:20 am

Quote :
He found he shared the same views as Colenso toward the native population and promoted and supported their interests whenever he could.

How the hell could, he be trusted when England was at war with the Zulus, if he supported the interests of the natives. I sure wouldn't want him watching my back. In 1879 every high ranking eye would have been watching Durnford and the Colenso's.
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90th

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PostSubject: Durnford was he capable    Mon Oct 01, 2012 12:25 am

Impi .
I'll bet people trusted Durnford as their are a few who owe their lives to him holding back the Left Horn etc , enabling many to attempt to escape , as for '' supporting the interests of the zulus '' well , that got him a long way didnt it ! , the zulus mustnt have realised he was on there side because they killed him in the end !.
90th.
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6pdr

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Mon Oct 01, 2012 12:46 am

[quote="impi"]
Quote :
He found he shared the same views as Colenso toward the native population and promoted and supported their interests whenever he could. How the hell could, he be trusted when England was at war with the Zulus, if he supported the interests of the natives.

It seems to have escaped your notice that there were "natives" on both side of the Anglo-Zulu war. Third Column probably had more "natives" than Britons in its ranks. It also seems to have escaped your notice that there were ZULU fighting on both sides during the war and there were many, many more "natives" living in Natal than Europeans and Boers combined. Finally, John Dunn was a Zulu chief in very high standing until a few days before the war commenced when he crossed into Natal. 1879 kwaZulu/Natal wasn't a black and white situation. Not literally. Not metaphorically.

And finally, Durnford knew the Colensos way BEFORE the outbreak of hostilities. For the great majority of that time the Zulu Kingdom were staunch ALLIES of BRITAIN. Bartle Frere went to war with Cetshwayo AGAINST the wishes of his superior and he forfeit his job as a direct result. So this idea you have that the Anglo-Zulu war was somehow about race is woefully misbegotten.

[quote="impi"]
Quote :
I sure wouldn't want him watching my back. In 1879 every high ranking eye would have been watching Durnford and the Colenso's.

That's just a paranoid fantasy impi. Chelmsford was very explicit with Durnsford about what he didn't like and the conduct he expected in future. It had NOTHING to do with his loyalty and nobody thought so at the time either. DO SOME READING.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Mon Oct 01, 2012 7:50 am

The points CTSG highlight are all HUMAN qualities / failings.

LC as far as I could tell had no human traits at all. If anyone can provide me with a pointer to any literature that shows LC to exhibit any human qualities at all, pleae point me to it.
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Mr M. Cooper

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PostSubject: Durnford was he capable.   Mon Oct 01, 2012 11:58 am

Even in these so called 'enlightened' times where evidence shows that it was not his fault, it appears that Col Durnford is still being held responsible by some for the loss at iSandlwana, and still being made the scapegoat for the failings of others, mainly Chelmsford.

Lets take a look at Frederic Augustus Thesiger (Chelmsford), and see how he comes out in all this.

Chelmsford illegally invaded Zululand without the knowledge of the British Government. He was arrogant and overconfident, and had contempt for the Zulu people. By illegally invading Zululand, he condemned thousands of people to unnecessary hardship, suffering and horrible deaths. He made a massive blunder by not properly reconnoitering the area around iSandlwana thoroughly, and then splitting his force in an enemies country and setting off on a wild goose chase, leaving an inadequate officer (Pulleine) in charge of the camp which resulted in a defeat with heavy loss of life. He then conspired with others, and told lies to deceive people into believing that the blame was with Col Durnford, thereby making Col Durnford the scapegoat and blackening his name, which in anyones book is a dishonourable thing to do.

So how does Chelmsford come out in all this?

Well lets see.

illegal invader, arrogant, overconfident, contempt for others, blunderer, conspiritor, deceiver, name blackener, dishonourable, liar.

Not very good is it? I wonder how many people would like to serve under an officer with a record such as this?

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24th

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Mon Oct 01, 2012 12:34 pm

Quote :
Chelmsford illegally invaded Zululand without the knowledge of the British Government

So why would the honourable Durnford take part in the invasion. He was a willing participant.
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PostSubject: Durnford was he capable.   Mon Oct 01, 2012 12:47 pm

Durnford was obeying orders given by his General, ie; Chelmsford.
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24th

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Mon Oct 01, 2012 12:53 pm

Very lame excuse. He had every right not to take part, and would have had the backing of the British Government, as you say it was an illegal invasion.
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PostSubject: Durnford was he capable    Mon Oct 01, 2012 1:39 pm

24th .
You cant be serious ! . '' He had every right not to take part '' . He was under the command of Chelmesford , you tell me how he was not going to take part ! . Ever heard of Disobeying a superior officer !! . As for backing of the British Govt .....Please !.
Not a good career move disobeying or not wanting to follow an order . It wasnt play school , cant take your ball or bat and go home because you dont like something !. John Dunn didnt want to take part in the war either till Chelmesford told him to pick a side , Chelmesford told Dunn things would go badly for him if he decided to take no part or side with Ceteswayo . I find it staggering you'd post something like that . Shocked and even worse , possibly believe in it !.
90th.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Mon Oct 01, 2012 1:48 pm

[quote="24th"]
Quote :
So why would the honourable Durnford take part in the invasion. He was a willing participant.

Congratulations 24th, I think we have FINALLY gotten to a valid criticism against Durnford as a man...if not as a professional officer. (Personally, I would not be the first to throw stones or to have such impossibly high standards, but for those compelled to sit in judgement and demand perfection there is a logical inconsistency between his beliefs and his behavior.)

If Durnford felt strongly that the "cause" of confederation was wrong then he might have resigned his commission and not participated. Though it may have lead to personal ruin, he had that option, I think. That would have been the UTTERLY ethical thing for him to do. But as has been noted elsewhere he was a man of his times, loyal to his social obligations, and possessed the perfectly common trait of ambition. And maybe the main attraction of the bishop's place wasn't so much his politics as his daughter. Who can say for sure?

But Durnford was an outlier because he actually thought deeply about the politics of the situation and regarded "the Basutos" he commanded as fellow human beings, not fodder. Not many professional Victorian officers were overtly political abroad. Their ethos was to unquestioningly serve their government's interests which were usually presented to them as "defensive" in nature. Blind patriotism or agnosticism was more the norm. As Durnford's career was to prove, it was just easier to get on that way. But Durnford was an odd duck in that he seems to have considered himself a human being and a citizen just as much as an officer and a soldier. My guess is he would have been ostracized in the Prussian officer corps, but much to its credit the British Army tolerated "eccentric" personalities, many of whom proved amazingly effective soldiers. (T.E. Laurence is one notable example...and his pal Gordon might be considered another.)

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6pdr

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Mon Oct 01, 2012 2:20 pm

90th wrote:
Chelmesford told Dunn things would go badly for him if he decided to take no part or side with Ceteswayo.

Is that true? I wasn't aware that Chelmsford and Dunn had a meeting. I've always wondered what tipped the balance for Dunn.
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PostSubject: Durnford was he capable    Mon Oct 01, 2012 2:25 pm

Hi 6pdr .
Yes , it happened . I'm not home so cant tell you which book / books it's in . Fairly certain it's an Ian Knight book , possibly Zulu Rising ? .
Cheers 90th.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Mon Oct 01, 2012 3:10 pm

"At the outbreak of the Anglo-Zulu war of 1879, Dunn faced an acute dilemma. He expressed the wish to remain neutral, but neutrality was impossible as the British made clear to him that unless he sided with them, he would be stripped of all land, wealth and position on the completion of the proposed invasion and conquest of Zululand. A major crisis in his life approached and he was left with little choice but to side with the British"
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Mon Oct 01, 2012 3:12 pm

From “John Dunn, Cetewayo and the Three generals” by John Dunn

“About the time of the above date (Dec 26, 1878), Lord Chelmsford and Commodore Sullivan came up to the Tugela, and so I crossed’ that river and requested an interview with them, which was granted.

In course of the conversation Lord Chelmsford asked me what course—in the present aspect of affairs-—I. intended: to take? I told him that my intention was to-remain neutral. To this he answered, “I cannot allow you to do that. You must either take one side or the other—join us, or take the consequences.” I told him that I had no quarrel with the Zulus, and did not like taking up arms against them, but begged him to advise me what to do. After considering for a little while, he said, “Take my advice, Mr. Dunn, and crossover to this side of the river (the southern boundary of Zululand) with all your people, and bring as many more with you as you can. We will give you room to locate them, and will feed them free of expense to you; and after the-war is over I promise to see you reinstated in your possessions.”


Petty Officer Tom


Last edited by Petty Officer Tom on Mon Oct 01, 2012 3:26 pm; edited 1 time in total
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6pdr

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Mon Oct 01, 2012 3:19 pm

Petty Officer Tom wrote:
From “John Dunn, Cetewayo and the Three generals” by John Dunn

“About the time of the above date (Dec 26, 1878), Lord Chelmsford and Commodore Sullivan came up to the Tugela, and so I crossed’ that river and requested an interview with them, which was granted.

Petty Oficer Tom -- thank you very much for this quote -- is the source you denote a book? I checked through ZULU RISING and although Knight mentions that Dunn and Chelmsford had a meeting regarding the strategy LC intended to pursue (Dunn offered excellent advice, btw, which Thesinger in his haste to bring the Zulu army to batte, subsequently ignored of course,) but he does not attribute a warning let alone include the dialogue. Awesome stuff...if you trust Dunn. Very Happy

Thanks for taking the time!
- 6pdr
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Mon Oct 01, 2012 3:21 pm

I know alot of you disagree with LC. But you have to hand it to him, he was a bloody good British officer. On the other hand, if Dunn was more interested in what was in it for him, over friendship. that was his choice.. And lets face it, he didn't do too bad. A king of a kingdom. So lets not go down the route of saying he had no choice. HE DID!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Mon Oct 01, 2012 3:31 pm

[quote="littlehand"So lets not go down the route of saying he had no choice. HE DID!!!!!!!!!!!!!![/quote]

You mean Dunn had a choice. I agree. I was surprised your quote indicated that he did not...unless it meant he had no choice but to make a choice...i.e. he could not just sit on the fence as he hoped. BTW, you did not attribute the source of that quote. Where did it come from?
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Mon Oct 01, 2012 3:39 pm

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6pdr

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Mon Oct 01, 2012 4:07 pm

Petty Officer Tom wrote:
6pdr,

The book is available free online.
Petty Officer Tom

This is VERY cool. I wasn't aware of this book. The quote PO Tom offered is on page 93.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Mon Oct 01, 2012 4:22 pm

While in captivity at Cape Town Castle, King Cetshwayo
recorded his thoughts on his friend, John Dunn:
Quote :

" One very cold and stormy night in winter I was seated before a large fire in my hut when there was a noise without as if someone was arriving.
I asked the cause from my attendants and they told me a white man in a miserable state of destitution had just arrived and claimed my hospitality. I ordered the servants to bring him in, and a tall, splendidly made man appeared. He was dressed in rags, for his clothes had been torn to pieces in fighting through the bush, and he was shivering from fever. I drew my cloak aside and asked him to sit by the fire, and told the servants to bring food and clothing. I loved this white man as a brother, and made him one of my head indunas, giving him land and wives, daughters of my chiefs. Now my sun has gone down and John Dunn is sitting by the fire, but he does not draw his cloak aside."


Even i would not have thrown this friendship away. The Good Lord Chelmsford told Dunn how it was. Dunn make his choice on his own....
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Mon Oct 01, 2012 4:51 pm

[quote="Chelmsfordthescapegoat"]While in captivity at Cape Town Castle, King Cetshwayo
recorded his thoughts on his friend, John Dunn:
Quote :
Dunn make his choice on his own....

I don't think there can be much dispute that Dunn was an opportunist. By moving between Zulu and colonial society he was able to have his cake and eat it too. He was a polygamist who was accepted in colonial society. He was responsible for selling and importing the majority of the guns used against the British during the AZW. And then when it was over the Brits handed him the keys to the kingdom. Nice work if you can get it...but the story of how Dunn came to be in that position is nothing short of amazing. He was, by any measure, an extraordinary man who was also, by contemporary standards, almost completely without scruple. In many ways Durford was his mirror opposite.
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John

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Mon Oct 01, 2012 4:54 pm

Quote :
In many ways Durford was his mirror opposite.
I really woundn't go that far!!!! Durnford had his own agenda,,,
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6pdr

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Mon Oct 01, 2012 5:09 pm

[quote="John"]
Quote :
I really woundn't go that far!!!! Durnford had his own agenda...

Don't we all. What was Durnford's?
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24th

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Mon Oct 01, 2012 5:24 pm

That:s anyone's guess, but no doub't he would have settled down quite happliy in SA.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Mon Oct 01, 2012 7:38 pm

John wrote:
Quote :
In many ways Durford was his mirror opposite.
I really woundn't go that far!!!! Durnford had his own agenda,,,

If you're going to post something like this, you Salute need to be able to back it up!
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Mon Oct 01, 2012 7:40 pm

[quote="6pdr"]
Chelmsfordthescapegoat wrote:
While in captivity at Cape Town Castle, King Cetshwayo
recorded his thoughts on his friend, John Dunn:
Quote :
Dunn make his choice on his own....

but the story of how Dunn came to be in that position is nothing short of amazing. He was, by any measure, an extraordinary man who was also, by contemporary standards, almost completely without scruple. .

Well, it is said, the more scruples you have, the less you earn!
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6pdr

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Mon Oct 01, 2012 9:07 pm

tasker224 wrote:


Well, it is said, the more scruples you have, the less you earn!

Not sure I understand. Question But maybe I should have written that Dunn was almost utterly AMORAL. Not immoral, but amoral i.e...as in he seemed to have had no internal compass of guilt.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Tue Oct 02, 2012 9:33 pm

Quote :
Not sure I understand. But maybe I should have written that Dunn was almost utterly AMORAL. Not immoral, but amoral i.e...as in he seemed to have had no internal compass of guilt.

Why should he, he had a crap life after his father was killed, living as a nomad most of the time. He made good and he knew how to play the game of life. If Tasker was more like Dunn, he would have had his Yacht along time ago.
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6pdr

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Tue Oct 02, 2012 9:52 pm

[quote="littlehand"]
Quote :
If Tasker was more like Dunn, he would have had his Yacht along time ago.

He doesn't know it but he's better off that way. You don't own a boat, it owns you, and it's just a big hole in the water you pour money into. Better to be well endowed...with a keen intellect...which Tasker seems to have in abundance. Very Happy
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littlehand

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Tue Oct 02, 2012 9:59 pm

There you go Tasker. You have an internal compass of guilt..... Forget the boat. Just be happy with nothing.
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6pdr

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Tue Oct 02, 2012 10:08 pm

littlehand wrote:
There you go Tasker. You have an internal compass of guilt..... Forget the boat. Just be happy with nothing.

You don't need to become an ascetic Buddist holy man Tasker, you just need not to covet thy neighbor's yacht. Don't worry. Be happy. :joker:
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tasker224

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Wed Oct 03, 2012 8:26 am

6pdr wrote:
littlehand wrote:
There you go Tasker. You have an internal compass of guilt..... Forget the boat. Just be happy with nothing.

You don't need to become an ascetic Buddist holy man Tasker, you just need not to covet thy neighbor's yacht. Don't worry. Be happy. :joker:


Indeed! :lol:
I'd rather be able to sleep at night than have a yacht bought from ill-gotten gains! Salute
(Not saying EVERY SINGLE super-rich person gained their wealth in an amoral way of course).
But I think Dunn did.
True wealth is your health. Look after your mind, your body and your closest. Salute
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Ulundi

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Wed Oct 03, 2012 8:40 am

Code:
I'd rather be able to sleep at night than have a yacht bought from ill-gotten gains

So being an MP wouldn't suit you.
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Ray63

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Mon Oct 08, 2012 8:03 pm

FROM MIDSHIPMAN TO FIELD MARSHAL
BY EVELYN WOOD, F.M, V.C, G.C.B., G.C.M.G.


Quote :
" That melancholy field of Isandwhlana is a Record of what Colonists did, in Silence and Death, but none the less a living Record now and for ever. In the place where Durnford fell there was a heap of slain ; the enemy lay thick about him, but your sons were as close, and the brave hearts of the best of your fighting men ceased to beat, in the effort to shelter their elected heroic leader. He himself was fully worthy of their devotion, and history will narrate how the ring of dead White men that encircled him, formed a halo round his, and their, renown."

I have read there were no Zulu dead at Isandlwana.

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Drummer Boy 14

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Mon Oct 08, 2012 8:38 pm

Some were left there, Forbes and Black record them, Forbes even mentions one lying covered by his
shield at Durnfords feet.
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Dave

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Mon Oct 08, 2012 10:58 pm

But saying "the enemy lay thick about him" gives the impression of lots of dead Zulu when we know this wasn't the case. More soldiers stories...
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Tue Oct 09, 2012 5:17 pm

Hi
Quite an interesting discussion but going round in circles a bit so, to try to move the discussion on, two points for clarifiaction of earlier points raised:
1. Little hand and CTSG You are completely wrong about your assertion that Durnford's rank was somehow subordinate to Pulleine's because he was in a 'colonial' command. (A) it was not colonial; his immediate command was a native contingent raised by the British; no colonial volunteers were involved (B) his general command was of column No. 2 in the Field Force South Africa and (C) his was not a 'colonial' rank but an imperial one. It made no difference whatsoever what he was commanding and you are both utterly wrong to use this as some sort of basis for an argument over superiority.
2. Martin. For clarification of what Durnford was supposed to do, read the last two orders that he was sent, but read them running together. It then becomes clear.
I'm working away from home and can't really become too involved in this one at the moment.
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6pdr

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Tue Oct 09, 2012 5:55 pm

Julian Whybra wrote:
Hi
Quite an interesting discussion but going round in circles a bit so, to try to move the discussion on, two points for clarifiaction of earlier points raised:
1. Little hand and CTSG You are completely wrong about your assertion that Durnford's rank was somehow subordinate to Pulleine's because he was in a 'colonial' command... (C) his was not a 'colonial' rank but an imperial one. It made no difference whatsoever what he was commanding...

I am not disputing your point(s) in the least--Durnford was an officer in the British Army--but I have questions about the status of men like "Maori" Browne. How would we translate his rank of Commandant? Would he have felt at least a social inferiority to lieutenant or captain with the regulars? I think the shadow ranks in the Indian Army originally made me think that anybody commanding "native" troops would be more or less a half a rank lower than they counterpart in the regulars...so somebody like Lonsdale would have less authority (even when he wasn't concussed) than his counterpart in the 24th.

I realize India and Africa were different partly because Indian formations were often commanded by Indian officers and NCOs whereas the NNC were commanded by colonials, or at least itinerant whites. To try to keep this on topic, Durnford's mounted units seemed to be exceptional because the NCOs, at least, were black. Is that correct? -6pdr

P.S. Going in circles is the cost of doing business here.
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PostSubject: Durnford was he capable.   Tue Oct 09, 2012 6:01 pm

Hi Julian.

Yes, things have become a lot clearer, especially since obtaining your new work 'Studies in the zulu war 1879', great work Julian.

Salute

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Tue Oct 09, 2012 6:22 pm

Quote :
Yes, things have become a lot clearer.
Give us an example Martin.
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littlehand

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Tue Oct 09, 2012 7:27 pm

Julian, your entitled to your opinion.

But it doesn't alter the fact, that Pulliene was in command in the absence of Col Glynn. Not Durnford.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Tue Oct 09, 2012 7:36 pm

LH. Don't you ever wonder why he was put in command of a Coloinal unit. :lol:
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Julian Whybra



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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Tue Oct 09, 2012 7:41 pm

6pdr
Neither Browne nor Lonsdale held Imperial army ranks so they represent a different kettle of fish. Both would have felt 'inferior' to Imperial colonels certainly but both came with reputations which meant that they should be listened to (especially by junior officers). Respect would have been shown to them by field officers and adjutants but neither would be subject to orders from them. Neither man could order around any imperial army officer. Neither would have dreamt of doing so. No imperial officer would have obeyed any such order. The parameters of the exercise of power were clearly laid down and lines were not and could not be crossed.
M. Cooper
Thank you. I hope you enjoyed the footnotes. I had particular fun with them in going off tangents and I think you'll find lots there to tempt you further. I hope you continue to enjoy future volumes.
Chard1879
No need to bother Martin. The Durnford Papers article is complex but in presenting the docs in their original form they can be made available for all to consider and form an opinion on. Bill Cainan has plenty for all.
little hand
I am entitled to my opinion but I am not entitled to alter the rules of engagement of a British army in the field. And those rules stipulate that the arrival of an officer of senior rank in a camp requires that officer to take command of the troops in that camp, whether he likes it or not. So yes, Pulleine was left in command of the camp but, when Durnford arrived, he assumed nominal command whilst he was in camp. When Durnford left, command reverted to Pulleine. That is beyond question. What is perhaps more intriguing is who was in command when Durnford returned from the donga - was the chain of command established - did Pulleine know that Durnford had returned - did Durnford know that Pulleine knew he'd returned - did either of them order anything at that point which would indicate that chain of command? For that you'll have to wait till Volume 3. Though in the meantime you will no doubt have your own opinion.
CTSG
He was not put in charge of a 'colonial' unit - I'm assuming here that you understand what 'colonial' means. He was put in charge of Column No. 2 of the Field Force South Africa.
Tasker
Yes.


Last edited by Julian Whybra on Tue Oct 09, 2012 7:43 pm; edited 2 times in total
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Tue Oct 09, 2012 7:42 pm

Dave wrote:
But saying "the enemy lay thick about him" gives the impression of lots of dead Zulu when we know this wasn't the case. More soldiers stories...

Well, they probably did lay thick about him in the immediate aftermath, until Zulus returned at a later time to recover their dead.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Tue Oct 09, 2012 7:45 pm

Chelmsfordthescapegoat wrote:
LH. Don't you ever wonder why he was put in command of a Coloinal unit. :lol:

As a colonial yourself, why don't you tell us?
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Dave

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Tue Oct 09, 2012 7:55 pm

Quote :
Well, they probably did lay thick about him in the immediate aftermath, until Zulus returned at a later time to recover their dead.

It which case "Wood" woundn't have seen them.
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