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tasker224

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sat Dec 01, 2012 12:57 pm

Well said Martin. Salute

It is not rocket science is it? There are a lot of posters on here who read a lot, but don't think through what they read for themselves. There others who fail to think through the little they have read and enter belatedly into debates without having read the beginning and middle of the discussion.
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PostSubject: Durnford, was he capable   Sat Dec 01, 2012 1:04 pm

Hi All,
The highest act of valor that a soldier can commit in battle is to give his life so that his comrades in arms can live to fight another day.
Although Vereker gave his horse to one Zulu, Col Anthony Durnford gave his life in order that 100-32 men. ie approx 68 men may get away and escape the bloody end that he and the gallant few suffered in the donga.
Col Anthony Durnford for my VC 68 times over!!

regards

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sat Dec 01, 2012 1:11 pm

Well said Barry, copy your post into the

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]

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Drummer Boy 14

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sat Dec 01, 2012 5:59 pm

How did Durnford give his life so that many people could escape ? He joined a large group of men that were already
fighting, a survivor records he rode up to them and said " now my men lets see what you can do " so even if he hadn't rode up there still would have been a stand. Not douting his bravery, just the fact he wasn't responceable for the stand that allowed many to get away.




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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sat Dec 01, 2012 7:18 pm

Quote :
DB. now my men lets see what you can do

DB. You come out with these Wonderfull quotes, but you always fail to name the source. Yet when others post quotes you the first to ask, where in came from. The only ones that could have known that this was said was a survivor. And please don't say it was a Zulu acount, because going by a lot of these Zulu accounts they must all have had a very good command of the English language, to understand what was being said at the time the person said it.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sat Dec 01, 2012 8:09 pm

Quote :
now my men lets see what you can do

Chard, that was quoted, by a member of the farcari tribe.. 1880.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sat Dec 01, 2012 8:25 pm

[quote="Chard1879"]
Quote :
And please don't say it was a Zulu acount, because going by a lot of these Zulu accounts they must all have had a very good command of the English language, to understand what was being said at the time the person said it.

Good to see Chard questioning the reliability of sacred "primary sources."
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sat Dec 01, 2012 8:36 pm

Drummer Boy 14 wrote:
How did Durnford give his life so that many people could escape ? He joined a large group of men that were already
fighting, a survivor records he rode up to them and said " now my men lets see what you can do " so even if he hadn't rode up there still would have been a stand. Not douting his bravery, just the fact he wasn't responceable for the stand that allowed many to get away.

DB14, read the words of Mehlokazulu which forum member Barry posted up earlier:
"Mehlogozulu, one of the main commanders of the Zulu imp, gave extensive interviews after the battle and, inter alia, this is what he had to say about Durnford' demise;...... when we closed in was came to a mixed party of mounted men and infantry, who had evidently been stopped by the horn . They numbered about a hundred and made a desperate resistance, some firing with pistols ( rifle amo having run out ) and others with swords. I heard the command "fire" being given repeatedly, but we proved too much for them, and we killed them all where they stood.
When it was all over I took a look at these men , and saw an officer with his arm in a sling , and with a big moustache, he was surrounded by carbineeers, soldiers and other men ( NMP) who I did not know, We ransacked the camp and took away everything we could , including ammuntition which we got out of boxes."

While others were escaping and saving their own skins, Durnford was commanding and fighting. What more do you need?

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sat Dec 01, 2012 11:54 pm

It was a gallant failure, its effect negligible, a gesture only.
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PostSubject: Durnford was he capable    Sun Dec 02, 2012 6:11 am

Littlehand .
I think a gesture that gave some people a longer life !.
90th.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sun Dec 02, 2012 7:57 am

Hi all

Mehlogozulu was a prisoner, he told what he was told to say ...

Cheers

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PostSubject: Durnford was he capable    Sun Dec 02, 2012 8:04 am

Pascal.
I dont think so , why would the British even talk to him , unless they wanted to know what he knew of the battle !.
It would be pointless the British telling him what to say . I have no doubt he told what he saw , why Lie , he had nothing to gain and he wasnt a friend of the british either , so to me at least , he told it as he saw it !.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sun Dec 02, 2012 8:09 am

Hi Gary

He especially say what he wanted, do not you think ?

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PostSubject: Durnford was he capable    Sun Dec 02, 2012 8:14 am

Pascal .
I'm sure he told it as he saw it , why Lie ?. He had nothing to gain and nothing to fear . The British never ever went around to any of the zulus that took part in any of the battles and told them what to say . If this did happen , it would've surfaced years after the battle . Salute
Cheers 90th.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sun Dec 02, 2012 8:28 am

Ok Gary , but I'm as St. Thomas, I believe what I see ...

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PostSubject: Durnford, was he capable ?   Sun Dec 02, 2012 8:29 am

Hi Littlehand.
Indeed, Isandlwana was a majesteic failure, but NOT as a result of the doings of Durnford.!
Those poor men who lost their lives that day were set up for failure by Chelmsford before Durnford entred the scene mid morning on 22/01/1879.
Now the reasons for the failure are manifold, all having been discussed at great length and with enthusiasm on this forum. and there is no need to regurgitate them here. If you have doubt about this go back through the various threads for a refresher
This does nor detract from the fact that many other acts of bravery ( other than Durnfords) that were committed that day, most of which,, of course we will never know about. as all witnesses and participants are...........dead.!

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sun Dec 02, 2012 8:37 am


Yes bravery , I'm as St. Thomas, I believe what I see ...

And the bravery of the Zulu, everyone cares ...

They were also at Isandhlwana...

Cheers

Pascal
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sun Dec 02, 2012 10:21 am

So who held the gates open so Durford could fall back on the camp. It was his fall back that started the panic among some of the Coloinial unitis, which spread into mass panic. The Zulu' gave him and hs men no choice but to fight.

Durnford was brave because he held the gates open, I'm happy for you all to think, that but it's just sad. None of you have the abilility to move it on from there.

Its amusing seeing you congratulating each other, on the various conclusions and brave deeds of Durford speculation, that's all it ever will be.

That's why this thread has come to a halt. Odd how other have stopped contributing.


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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sun Dec 02, 2012 10:24 am

Yes.
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90th

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PostSubject: Durnford was he capable   Sun Dec 02, 2012 11:10 am

Hi John.
How about you read a couple of books on Durnford's time at the donga , and you tell us who held the gates as you say open for him . I'd be interested to see who you come up with , Considering he was out on the right front of the camp by himself . Also read about the lack of Ammunition for Durnford and his troops at the donga and the flanking movement of the zulu army endevouring to cut him off from the camp !. If you still have the same thoughts afterwards I'll think it very sad that you are unable to see the forest because of the trees !. Oh , dont forget Durnford ordered the Edenvale Cont and others to leave Isandlwana while they still could . Fairly certain if you read Molifes account they tried to get Durnford to leave as well , but no , he decided to stay , no doubt he could've done a runner like many others , and nothing would 've been said . I'm happy to be corrected .
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sun Dec 02, 2012 11:22 am

Gary

He left, turn to his left, which caused the retreat and massacre of the two coys of the 2/24 (G coy and composite company ) . A desatre...

Cheers

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sun Dec 02, 2012 11:24 am

John. Most people aways argue their point, based on "Durnford's Last Stand & Keeping the door open to allow other the escape" What has to be understood, is that the same Zulus that were being held at bay, we're attacking Dunrford as well, he and those with him weren't keeping the door open at all they were fighting for their lives. Is common knowledge that men in those conditions will rally to the strongest point safety in numbers. Those men in the group with Durnford were on foot, and had no chance of escape. Durfords shouts of glory " Who will stand by me ect"
Was coming from a man who knew he was about to died and the more men he could muster the better his chances of survival.

Let them carry on looking at his last stand, but as you say, we can't move on. It was the orders & positioning of the men, the lack of fortifications, coupled with over whelming numbers of enermy.



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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sun Dec 02, 2012 11:30 am

Good.
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old historian2

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sun Dec 02, 2012 11:35 am

90th the only evidence that can be used to understand what happen at Isandlwana, can only be from primary accounts. There was no one there who really saw what happen, apart from those brave Zulu's who's victory it was that day. most books are based on speculation.

"
Quote :
Durnford ordered the Edenvale Cont and others to leave Isandlwana while they still could"

Why, even at the last stages, he's sending men off the battlefield. That would have had an impact on others survial, who had no choice but to stay. Reckless!!! Thought on Durnfords part. What right did have to decided who lives or dies.

The truth is 90th you can post very liitle primary evidence to back up what you say happen. CTSG posted Henderson's account, but that was shot down because it doesn't fit in with yours and others thoughts on what really did take place.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sun Dec 02, 2012 11:47 am

John, OldH. Heres an interesting observation. And a very intelligent one.

"From "The Memoirs of the Gemini Generals..., 1896, by Maj-Gen Osborn Wilkinson, C.B. and Maj-Gen Johnson Wilkinson - 

"...I know, of course, that Lord Chelmsford was condemned mercilessly for the Isandula disaster. I suppose the humblest soldier is entitled to his opinion, and if I am right in thinking that Colonels Pullein and Durnford received orders to act on the defensive, and that their camp was pitched on a very favourable position, with an inaccessible hill in the rear, I believe that had any other of our most successful generals been in command at that time, he would have been satisfied that with nearly eight hundred Europeans, Colonel Durnford had ample means to resist any attack that might be made on him ; and I believe Colonel Durnford, himself a most experienced and scientific officer, who was well acquainted with the Zulus, held the same opinion, and was confident in his ability to hold his own. I would venture to say thus much regarding the Zulus, that whilst every one would have given them credit for courage and daring which were not to be despised, yet I suspect that hardly a soul ever imagined that they were capable of displaying such reckless bravery and utter contempt of death in the face of the havoc-dealing fire of disciplined troops..." 
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PostSubject: Durnford was he capable.   Sun Dec 02, 2012 11:58 am

John.

You just don't see it do you?

No one held the gates open for Durnford, he was giving Pulleine the chance to do something about the situation before it got out of hand, but Pulleine blew it.

Durnford was making a brilliant stand in the donga and holding back the zulu left horn, he was giving Pulleine the chance to draw in the companies while he held the zulus back. However, Pulleine did not take this great opportunity to pull back the companies over on the British right, and Durnford could not hold the zulu left horn back for ever. His ammo was running out and he was being outflanked on both sides, his position was in great danger so he had to withdraw back towards the camp. If Pulleine had drawn back back the companies over on the right of the British line before Durnford was forced to retire from the donga, Durnford could have made a fighting retreat and got back to the camp, but instead, Pulleine sent orders to Pope to move towards Durnford just as Durnford was retreating from the donga, this left the British right exposed, the NNC did a runner leaving Wardell in a bad position and Pope in no man's land. It wasn't Durnford who created this mess, it was through Pulleine not being able to understand the situation, Durnford was giving him the chance to draw back the companies over on the British right, but Pulleine did not take the opportunity, and as a result of Pulleines lack of understanding, the battle was all but lost.

No wonder Durnford went looking for Pulleine when he got back to the camp, I bet he could have throttled him for not using his head, but Pulleine could not be found.

Durnford did his best, but Pulleine did not take the opportunity, don't blame Durnford for the inactions of Pulleine.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sun Dec 02, 2012 12:01 pm

Quote :
I would venture to say thus much regarding the Zulus, that whilst every one would have given them credit for courage and daring which were not to be despised, yet I suspect that hardly a soul ever imagined that they were capable of displaying such reckless bravery and utter contempt of death in the face of the havoc-dealing fire of disciplined troops..." 

Was it reckless! or just down right Bravery, combined with superior military Tatics?
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PostSubject: Durnford was he capable    Sun Dec 02, 2012 12:18 pm

OH2.
I suggest you read a couple of books as well , I dont have time to keep running to and fro to post '' Primary Sources '' which I've read and posted here many times if you'd care to read them and remember them . I told you Molife was ordered by Durnford to leave , dont tell me its not a primary source , Julian has also posted that Durnford ordered them to leave , as for your statement what gave him the right to decide who lives and dies , are you for real ????????. Why would he order them to stay and die for no reason ??? , they had horses , they could get away and live to fight another day . Many with Durnford didnt have the luxury of horses toward the end , so they did what they could only do , fought together and died together , those on foot were dead men , they knew it , and Durnford knew it . If you can be bothered reading of the actions of the Edendale Contg at the river , I suggest you purchase a book , or dust one off, and read for yourself as per your primary sources how many survivors of Isandlwana owe their lives to this contg , if , as you are so plainly intimating that Durnford was at fault for letting them flee , just sit back and think what the number of survivors would've been if you had Durnford keep the Contg with him , let me spell it out for you , NOT MANY ! , they would all be dead along with a few more who were saved at the river by the Edendale Contg . Here is some primary source for you , Simeon Nkambule who managed to get the contg to the river and keep them together , stopped and fired a few volleys at the advancing zulus . Trooper Barker ( who would have died if the Contg stayed with Durnford as you wanted ) said '' Had it not been for these Basutos I DOUBT IF A SINGLE MAN WHITE MAN WOULD HAVE ESCAPED BY FUGITIVES DRIFT , as they kept the zulus in check while the few escaped . A nice primary source for you to mull over ! .
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PostSubject: Durnford was he capable    Sun Dec 02, 2012 12:25 pm

CTSG .
:lol: ..Who is Wilkinson ? , was he in Sth Africa ? , can you give me his service details if he was in Sth Africa ? . I dont profess to know every officer who was in Zululand during the AZW , but his name ( Wilkinson doesn't ring any bells ) . Hope you can enlighten me / us of Wilkinson's involvement ? .
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PostSubject: Durnford was he capable    Sun Dec 02, 2012 12:29 pm

CTSG .
Forgot to mention your chap Wilkinson speaks of the inacessable hill to the rear !! , maybe he didnt realise that the rear of the hill could be and was traversed by the zulu army ?????. Not sure his point is of any validity and I for one hardly think it's as you tend to believe an intelligent statement , especially after the inacessable hill line ! Suspect
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PostSubject: Durnford was he capable.   Sun Dec 02, 2012 12:42 pm

Hi 90th.

As I said before, no matter how many light bulbs you switch on Idea Idea Idea Idea Idea Idea Idea Idea

Some people just refuse to see the light. Suspect Suspect :lol:


Salute





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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sun Dec 02, 2012 12:47 pm

CTSG. Thanks for posting the "Wilkinson" letter. Although you did say, it was an interesting observation

Just goes to show, people don't read the full artical posted. They just engaged in posting nonsense.
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PostSubject: Durnford was he capable    Sun Dec 02, 2012 12:51 pm

Ray63 .
I'll go with Right Bravery as opposed to recklessness , we shouldnt forget that after the zulus lost so many at Isandlwana , they lined up again at R.D , Gingindlovu , Kambula and Ulundi . To me not what I'd call reckless acts of Bravery , but brave acts plain and simple . Salute Although some will not think so ! Shocked
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sun Dec 02, 2012 1:03 pm

Admin Subject: Durnford was he capable.    Wed 28 Nov 2012 - 5:17

"Gent's can we please stop with the personal attacks Although it can be rather amusing to read, they are getting ridiculous. It is a complete waste of time and highly unprofessional. If you really feel the need to rip into each other take it to the ring!! This section can be found on the bottom of home page".

The above was posted on 28th November.

This debate is achieving nothing, except continued personal attacks on each other, which to me indicates once again this topic has come to a stand still. As aways I'm happy to let the debate continue, provided its brought back on topic and the attacks cease. If this cannot be achieved by tomorow, I will lock it down.

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sun Dec 02, 2012 1:22 pm

Gary

"inacessable the hill to the rear"

That means that the mountain is behind them, and therefore, have prevented their retreat in the position where they were?

We could to get to the top than on a road that was on the other side, or is there just past the right horn Sad

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PostSubject: Durnford was he capable    Sun Dec 02, 2012 1:29 pm

OH2 .
Interesting observation , true , but you neglected to mention '' A very Intelligent one '' that was the point I was endevouring to
deal with .
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sun Dec 02, 2012 2:10 pm

Wilkinson meant "inacessable the hill to the rear" because the mountain is behind them, and therefore, have prevented their retreat in the position where they were ...

Wilkinson was right.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sun Dec 02, 2012 2:14 pm

old historian2 wrote:
90th the only evidence that can be used to understand what happen at Isandlwana, can only be from primary accounts. There was no one there who really saw what happen, apart from those brave Zulu's who's victory it was that day. most books are based on speculation.

"
Quote :
Durnford ordered the Edenvale Cont and others to leave Isandlwana while they still could"

Why, even at the last stages, he's sending men off the battlefield. That would have had an impact on others survial, who had no choice but to stay. Reckless!!! Thought on Durnfords part. What right did have to decided who lives or dies.

The truth is 90th you can post very liitle primary evidence to back up what you say happen. CTSG posted Henderson's account, but that was shot down because it doesn't fit in with yours and others thoughts on what really did take place.

Hi Old H

If it wasn't for the NNH at the river hardly anyone would have lived, they layed down cover fire and dispersed the
Zulus that were waiting to kill the people crossing the river. What would have been the point in them staying ? They would have just died like all the others who didn't have a horse, read Molife's account, they were cut off by the Zulu Horn and couldn't get back to Durnford. All this is explained in books like Ian knight, i realy recomend you read them.



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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sun Dec 02, 2012 2:22 pm

Hi DB14

The story is a series of lies upon which we all agree. :lol:

Cheers

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sun Dec 02, 2012 3:04 pm

Pascal MAHE wrote:
The story is a series of lies upon which we all agree.

scratch Suspect scratch
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sun Dec 02, 2012 3:12 pm

That means that we will never know what happened ...

You can read all the books you want, it is useless, the truth is out there ...
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sun Dec 02, 2012 7:14 pm

From "History of the Corps of Royal Engineers", 1889 - 

"...He saw at a glance that the only chance for the fugitives was to detain the Zulus as long as possible, and resolved by the sacrifice of his life to hold the point to the last. He could easily have escaped had he chosen, for he was well mounted ; but, had he done so, the lives of all on foot must have been lost. He and those he was able to gather round him died where they stood, and thereby set an example of noble self-devotion, which was not long in bearing fruit. It was only in the succeeding year Henn followed in his footsteps, and in a precisely similar manner under the same circumstances, at the disaster of Maiwand, gave up his life to save those of his flying comrades..." 
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sun Dec 02, 2012 7:34 pm

But he also knew that if he survived, his life would be hell, it had to play...
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Chelmsfordthescapegoat

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sun Dec 02, 2012 7:52 pm

Pascal, now there's food for thought!!
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littlehand

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sun Dec 02, 2012 9:42 pm

We are all aware that poor communication and intelligence encouraged Chelmsford to divide his force and set off with half of his troops to find and defeat the Zulu Impi, which Dartnell had believed he had found. What wasn't known was that hidden in a ravine just a few miles from the camp was a Zulu Army of 25,000 warriors.

The separation proved to be a fatal deceision. It not only left the British camp at Isandlwana even more heavily outnumbered, it also disconnected the two groups of soldiers. Chelmsford was 11 kilometres away when the Zulu Impi attacked and, due to the terrain, there was a poor view of the camp he even dismissed reports of the attack when they reached him.

The fatal inadequacy in the British camp at Isandlwana was the confusion about who was actually in charge. The orders given to Durnford who, as a full Lieutenant-Colonel, should have taken command (debatable) but Chelmsford’s secretary Col: Crealock were ambiguous and led to uncertainty between him and the camp commander Col: Pulleine.

This uncertain, dual command resulted in mixed messages filtering down through the British leadership and was also possibly responsible for Pulleine’s hesitancy at vital moments during the battle. The upshot was repeatedly poor coordination. disorganisation, confusion which cost the lives of 1,329 soldiers 

Pulleine and Durnford should have both remained in the camp and commanded the troops instead of leaving the lower ranking officers to close the gaps by taking their own initiatives, which further exasperated the situation.

"Col Anthony Durnford was in command of the camp, however temporarily, and there was no intention that could be called forward to Mangeni, before the following day at the earliest. He chased into the veldt looking for a fight. In so doing he dispersed British combat power and faciltated defeat in detail.

If Pulleine is guilty of anything it is of not disobeying his senior officer, Durnford, who demanded his best support. Technically he had no alternative.

This is my last post. In the " The Durnford was he capable" time for somemore reference work. Salute
 
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Ulundi

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sun Dec 02, 2012 10:23 pm

LH Good post to close on. Salute

LH. Will send you an e-mail tomorow. Would be interested in helping with the reference side of the forum. Salute


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littlehand

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Sun Dec 02, 2012 11:34 pm

OK!!
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Mon Dec 03, 2012 6:54 am

Pascal :

But he also knew that if he survived, his life would be hell, it had to play...

Chelmsfordthescapegoat :

Pascal, now there's food for thought!!

Pascal :

Yes, things can he let himself die ...
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Ebsworth

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Mon Dec 03, 2012 9:28 am

Sorry to come at this as a total newcomer. I've been following the site for ages but never posted a comment. But I thought the MAIN problems in relation to Pulleine's and Durnford's actions were, first, that they badly underestimated the threat posed by the Zulus - lots of evidence about Pulleine's "lackadaisical" response to the iMpi's appearance; and, second - more importantly - that they simply followed the standard instructions issued by Chelmsford in relation to possible attack. These instructions required commanders to "meet such an attack" with their regular infantry deployed or "extended", rather than - as NOW seems more sensible - concentrated in a defensive position within the camp. Doesn't Saul David say that a copy of these instructions was found on Pulleine's body??
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Mr Greaves

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford was he capable.2   Mon Dec 03, 2012 9:49 am

Quote :
concentrated in a defensive position within the camp
That wound have mede more sense. In my eyes any instructions, on how to fight a battle. is ok on paper. Enemy tatics shoud dictate how the battle is fought. The British at Isandlwana would have held the high ground with a formidible defence protecting their rear ( Isandlwana Hill)
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