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 Another attack location other than Isandlwana.

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Chard1879

Chard1879

Posts : 1261
Join date : 2010-04-12

Another attack location other than Isandlwana.  Empty
PostSubject: Another attack location other than Isandlwana.    Another attack location other than Isandlwana.  EmptySun Dec 05, 2010 1:08 am

“Scenario” I expect this only relates to those members that know Zululand well.

Lets imagine Isandlwana never happen. The British successfully arrived at Isandlwana stay for a few days then moved further into Zululand.

Where would the most likely place have been to launch their attack ? Either as the British column was on the move or camped. But this time the full force of Chelmsford’s column would be in its entirety. There are quite a few members who live or have been to the Battlefields many times. The ones that come to mind are Ken, Springbok & Neil. For instance are there other locations like the Ngwebeni valley further into Zululand on the route Chelmsford would have taken in 1879 where 20,000 Zulu could hide and launch a similar attack to that of Isandlwana. Where would that prime location have been. This can be a personal preference.

On the move.
When my interested in the Zulu War began, I was in the mind that a British column on the move would have been a far easier target for the Zulu’s but I started thinking most of the Zulu attacks were launched against fortified British positions. This is something I could not get my head around, but then thinking of the traditional Zulu fighting formation, would it not be necessary for the enemy to be static in order for them to bring the horns ect into action or it just would not have worked. Or is this not the case.
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90th

90th

Posts : 10186
Join date : 2009-04-07
Age : 64
Location : Melbourne, Australia

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PostSubject: Another attack location.   Another attack location other than Isandlwana.  EmptySun Dec 05, 2010 6:09 am

Hi Chard18
Because I'm to lazy to get off my backside and organize my passport to actually get to Zululand ! . I cant answer or attempt
to answer your first question ! Suspect . I have always been surprised why the zulu didnt attack the columns in the open .
Cetswayo did forbid his army to attack fortified positions . Dabulamanzi knew this but still decided to attack R.Drift anyway .
At Khambula it was more a case of the zulu being goaded by Buller which made them attack in an un-organized unit .
But , as Wood said himself , it was a close run thing . And one gets the impression had the zulu leaders been able to
co - ordinate the attack in the proper way , they may well have been victorious again . Had the zulus been a little more flexible
in their tactics I think there would have been many more English and Colonial casualties .
cheers 90th.
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Frank Allewell

Frank Allewell

Posts : 7669
Join date : 2009-09-21
Age : 73
Location : Cape Town South Africa

Another attack location other than Isandlwana.  Empty
PostSubject: Re: Another attack location other than Isandlwana.    Another attack location other than Isandlwana.  EmptyMon Dec 06, 2010 6:45 am

Chard
Interesting point
Politically any Zulu defence of the country would have had to have happened close to the boundary. So if not isandlwana it would have been very close. Considering that the next planned stop would have been around the Gorge and the Army was supposedly gearing to attack on the 23rd it would have happened either en route or at the Gorge.
Just a thought.

Regards
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24th

24th

Posts : 1851
Join date : 2009-03-25

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PostSubject: Re: Another attack location other than Isandlwana.    Another attack location other than Isandlwana.  EmptyMon Dec 06, 2010 5:37 pm

I would have thought the best time to have launched an attack would have been when the British were crossing into Zululand from Rorkes Drift. There would have been no fortifications the ammo boxes would have still been screwed down. The British would have been in line formation. The RA would not have had time to un-hitch the guns position and fire. 20 odd thousand Zulu would have been very hard to stop. Plus the moon would have been ok. Possibly the early hours while it was still dark.
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Dave

Dave

Posts : 1605
Join date : 2009-09-21

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PostSubject: Re: Another attack location other than Isandlwana.    Another attack location other than Isandlwana.  EmptyMon Dec 06, 2010 6:09 pm

I'm not to sure on that 24th. They would have been caught off guard, but they would have formed up and poured a lot of rounds into the 7ulus. Don't forget the men at Isandlwana were spread to far out, they would have been together at RD. There would have been enough cover fire for the RA and Rocket brigade to come in to action. Not sure but there might have been Gatling guns at the point of crossing before dividing into three columns.
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Chard1879

Chard1879

Posts : 1261
Join date : 2010-04-12

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PostSubject: Re: Another attack location other than Isandlwana.    Another attack location other than Isandlwana.  EmptyMon Dec 06, 2010 9:15 pm

24th. Cetshwayo would then have been seen as the aggressor in the eyes of the world not good tactics. Cetshwayo kaMpande knew this. So he waited until the British Drew First Blood, which they did at the attack on Sihayo Kraal.
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Frank Allewell

Frank Allewell

Posts : 7669
Join date : 2009-09-21
Age : 73
Location : Cape Town South Africa

Another attack location other than Isandlwana.  Empty
PostSubject: Re: Another attack location other than Isandlwana.    Another attack location other than Isandlwana.  EmptyTue Dec 07, 2010 6:25 am

I dont think an attack at the Drift would have been a good idea.
The ground drops sharply into the river from the Natal side. From the camp area there is a view over the plain on the other side for a long distance. Any impi would have been visible for a long distance. An impi could have aproached up or down river but would have been very constrained in width.
If an attack was developed when the crossing was under way it would have been pretty suicidal, the troops on the Zulu bank were protected by cavalry vedets. They would have had all the time in the world to form up with their backs to the river. On the oposite bank the balance of the troops plus guns would have had the advantage of elevation being able to fire over the heads of the troops at any advancing impi.
Again at the time of the crossing the Zulu army was still on its way down from Ulundi.

I would still believe that any attack would have been developed aimed at the road to the Gorge or at the Gorge.

Regards
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