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Author Topic: More Pygmy Wars updates  (Read 761 times)

Offline Mark Plant

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    • Pygmy Wars : Russian Civil War and Related Stuff
More Pygmy Wars updates
« on: January 20, 2022, 03:56:55 AM »
So I made it my mission this year, aided by lockdowns, to knock off my list of things I had been wanting to do for some time. It's taken a while, but I did get there.

Here: Pygmy Wars Updates page

There's a lot of Polish 1920 stuff, something on the Crimea in 1919 and, the one I am most pleased with, orbats for Soviet forces throughout the RCW taken from the 4th volume of the Directives of the Red Army.

The Back of Beyond is not forgotten. I translated the section of Grondij's book on the time he spent with Kolchak's army (which I first started doing 15 years ago). Then, despite having zero interest in it but thinking of you guys, I continued on and added the section about his time with the Japanese intervention forces.

Errors spotted and any suggestions are welcome.

Next up, Sergei Mamontov's memoirs of his time in the Volunteer Army horse artillery and some technical stuff on how the Poles fought.

Offline Mike Blake

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  • Size Does Matter! - 54mm - The One True Scale
Re: More Pygmy Wars updates
« Reply #1 on: January 20, 2022, 08:40:07 AM »
Brilliant. Thanks for all the hard work
Size Does Matter! - 54mm - The One True Scale

Offline Dr Bogo

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Re: More Pygmy Wars updates
« Reply #2 on: January 20, 2022, 11:06:47 AM »
Great to hear Mark, and to echo Mike I always really appreciate the effort that goes into Pygmy Wars as it's singularly brilliant resource to have access to. Should we just drop any typo spots into this thread?

Online madman

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Re: More Pygmy Wars updates
« Reply #3 on: January 20, 2022, 12:18:34 PM »
Yes, thank you very much for all the hard work. It is appreciated and used.

Offline trev

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Re: More Pygmy Wars updates
« Reply #4 on: January 20, 2022, 12:20:34 PM »
Excellent news!  I really appreciate you sharing all your hard work Mark.  I've had a very quick nose around and it looks great stuff.

With my proof reader hat on, I did notice that on Table 22 in the SPECIAL SHORIN GROUP 9th Army section the division names are missing.  If I see any more I'll post them here.

One additonal question, that may be explained somewhere I haven't found yet, so apologies if it is.

This is the data for the first unit in table 22.
       
6th Independent Army
1st Rifle Division
Date 29/8
Brigades 2
Regiments 6
Command 510
Bayonets 8,903
Sabres -
Total 14,254
Guns 28
MGs 151

There are 510 Command and 8,903 Bayonets but 14,254 'total'.  Presumably some are gunners and MG Crews, plus maybe some medical, supply and possible work parties but at about a third of the total that seems a large tail for the time.  Have I misunderstood?

Offline Pan Marek

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Re: More Pygmy Wars updates
« Reply #5 on: January 20, 2022, 05:23:00 PM »
Thanks for your work.  I'm not sure I would have ever considered gaming this period without your site.

Looking forward to you info on the Poles.

Offline Mark Plant

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    • Pygmy Wars : Russian Civil War and Related Stuff
Re: More Pygmy Wars updates
« Reply #6 on: January 20, 2022, 08:23:46 PM »

With my proof reader hat on, I did notice that on Table 22 in the SPECIAL SHORIN GROUP 9th Army section the division names are missing.  If I see any more I'll post them here.

...

There are 510 Command and 8,903 Bayonets but 14,254 'total'.  Presumably some are gunners and MG Crews, plus maybe some medical, supply and possible work parties but at about a third of the total that seems a large tail for the time.  Have I misunderstood?

Thanks. There were other issues with Table 22 as well. I think I must have saved an early copy.

The total column is "всего личного состава" which is "total of people in the line-up". Cuprum may be able to help here, because this is a very difficult issue for me.

I believe the Soviets usually included machine-gunners in their "bayonet" totals. The Poles definitely didn't, and the AFSR neither, I believe.

The "total" for a division would be everyone in that division. The artillery, communications, engineering etc, would be some, but not most of the difference. The rest I believe is administrative or supply roles, even if some 200 km from the front lines.

The Reds consistently tended to have larger "tails" than their opponents. Possibly in part due to lack of trained staff, but I suspect it was mostly that their opponents had much shorter and direct supply lines and slightly lower need to appropriate material from the locals.

There is also the issue of desertion, which required troops to round up stragglers. All the armies had desertion issues, but the Reds seem to have dealt with it inside the army, rather than using civilian bodies.

Offline cuprum

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Re: More Pygmy Wars updates
« Reply #7 on: January 23, 2022, 05:13:21 AM »
"Bayonets" are combatants, i.e. people who are in the fighting units.
In addition, there are "eaters" - those who are on allowance, but do not take part in the battle directly. Drivers, clerks, hospitals, political agitators, librarians, teachers, the editorial office of the divisional newspaper, the court (revolutionary tribunal) and the like ...
Among the Reds, the number of "eaters" sometimes reached incredible proportions.

Offline Ignatieff

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Re: More Pygmy Wars updates
« Reply #8 on: January 23, 2022, 07:42:54 AM »
Absolutely brilliant work Mark.  Thank you.  Any more books on the horizon?  Your one on Odessa is one of my all time favourites
"...and as always, we are dealing with strange forces far beyond our comprehension...."

All limitations are self imposed.  Work hard and dream big.

Offline Sparrow

  • Mastermind
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Re: More Pygmy Wars updates
« Reply #9 on: January 23, 2022, 10:51:49 AM »
Excellent stuff. Thank you so much for all your hard work. Hugely appreciated.
Put your trust in God and keep your powder dry!

Offline Mark Plant

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    • Pygmy Wars : Russian Civil War and Related Stuff
Re: More Pygmy Wars updates
« Reply #10 on: January 23, 2022, 07:11:33 PM »
No books, sorry.

With Grondijs, and Mamontov on the way, you get people writing from first hand experience, and that is my preferred subject matter.

I was thinking of writing up something on tachankas though. Except it might ruffle some feathers, because people can be odd about protecting "their" side.

Online MaleGriffin

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Re: More Pygmy Wars updates
« Reply #11 on: January 23, 2022, 07:13:39 PM »
Wow! Just WoW...
Hoc quoque transibit
Sanguinem sistit semper

Offline trev

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Re: More Pygmy Wars updates
« Reply #12 on: January 24, 2022, 11:51:08 AM »
Thanks for the replies on the numbers guys, that will be helpful in translating the stats into combat power for scenarios.  I do have a Pravda truck for my Reds, and my club mate who is doing the Volunteer Army Whites loves adding nurses, telegraph teams, supply trucks etc.  I assume some of the non-bayonets might have actually been somewhat armed but they're probably best ignored as even nominally combat capable.

Offline cuprum

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Re: More Pygmy Wars updates
« Reply #13 on: January 24, 2022, 12:39:15 PM »
Non-combatants were often armed. But these are weapons of self-defense - they were hardly able to solve any real combat missions.

Offline trev

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Re: More Pygmy Wars updates
« Reply #14 on: January 24, 2022, 12:53:14 PM »
Thanks for the confirmation.  If the Reds had a lot of tail troops, that had next to no combat value, it makes some of their flights and capitulations more understandable.   Although poor command and panic is probably explantion enough for most of them.

 

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