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Old June 27th, 2012, 03:11 AM   #1
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Most humiliating military defeat in your countries history


What was the most humiliating defeat in your countries in your opinion. Your answer can be based on the number of deaths, the way in which it was fought, the horror. Anything you want, but do explain when you give your answer.

For me it's the surrender to Nazi-Germany after five days of fighting. Our government had cut so much on our military that soldiers used weapons from the First World War, wore uniforms from decades ago, had no tank regiments, and the mentality of the Dutch was that of more then a century of peace. It is true that Hitler expected to overrun the Netherlands in one day, but still quite sad. On the other side what could we do when the Germans threatened to do the same to The Hague, Amsterdam etc as they did to Rotterdam.

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A second option for me is the Fourth Anglo Dutch war. The once mighty and dominant Dutch navy. Who dominated the European waters for over a century were in one swift war reduced to a secondary naval power. Britain definatly took over the position of the Dutch. We would remain a strong naval power, but never as strong as we once were.

What about you?
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Old June 27th, 2012, 03:25 AM   #2

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The Dutch assumed the opposing forces would respect the neutrality of the Netherlands like they did in the first world war. They were wrong.

Also I don't see how it was humiliating, if we had been the only ones to be conquered so rapidly it might have been humiliating, however look at Poland and even France. We fought as best we could with the, as you mentioned, obsolete weapons we had. After the bombing of Rotterdam it would have been insane to continue the fight.

So, I would agree on your second option more than the first, I simply fail to see how it was humiliating.
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Old June 27th, 2012, 03:36 AM   #3
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Dunkirk


For me, as a Brit, I think it would have to be Dunkirk, the British had promised so much to the world, claiming how they would stop the Evil Nazi Empire along with France. But within just eight months, the French had been forced to surrender and falling into Nazi Occupation and the British feeling back to Great Britain. Despite the War Propaganda that was made from it, it was simply a Military Disaster.

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I recently went to the Dutch Resistance Museum in Amsterdam not that long ago, and I think you should be proud as a Dutchman for what the Resistance Movement did back then to help the Netherlands (An amazing, beautiful country)
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Old June 27th, 2012, 03:47 AM   #4

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Thx, and yes I'm very proud of that. However the resistance movement only started once The Netherlands were formally occupied by Nazi Germany. I still read books on the resistance and the heroism and sacrifice simply amazes me, I dare not say I could be so heroic if there ever comes a day where such actions are required.

Also, Dunkirk, for me was necessary and not humiliating. You successfully managed to retreat your forces to abandon a lost battle to fight another day. Even though it might look humiliating I think of it more as cutting your losses. Look at Hitler and his 6th army in Stalingrad. Besides the military catastrophe he literally signed their death sentence.

One specific example of the tragic fate of the German POWs was after the
Battle_of_Stalingrad Battle_of_Stalingrad
, during which the Soviets captured 91,000 German troops, many already starved and ill, of whom only 5,000 survived the war.
Prisoner_of_war Prisoner_of_war
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Old June 27th, 2012, 04:14 AM   #5
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thought the dutch were neutral (successfully) during the first world war, so when you say weapons from ww1 do you mean the period or bought as surplus?


ermmm humiliating military defeat.. Mona... ad 60, i mean how many battles end up with your religion being destroyed.
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Old June 27th, 2012, 04:16 AM   #6

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There have been so many, difficult to choose;
Corunna 1809
The retreat from Kabul 1839
Isandlwana 1879
Dunkirk 1940
Singapore 1942
Iraq 2009
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Old June 27th, 2012, 04:20 AM   #7

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Like I said in my previous post, they were neutral. What weapons they did posses were mostly obsolete and completely incapable of successfully defending any invaders with modern arms. Like I said, they assumed the opposing forces would respect Dutch neutrality, so they were completely unprepared for any military conflict. The exact composition of weapons I do not know, all I know is that (most of) it was obsolete.
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Old June 27th, 2012, 04:27 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Diced View Post
Like I said in my previous post, they were neutral. What weapons they did posses were mostly obsolete and completely incapable of successfully defending any invaders with modern arms. Like I said, they assumed the opposing forces would respect Dutch neutrality, so they were completely unprepared for any military conflict. The exact composition of weapons I do not know, all I know is that (most of) it was obsolete.
okay thanks, i was more asking the questioner, but that's fine. the british told you you were going to be invaded. but you didn't believe them huh.. i know, it happens. we told the russians too and guess what they didn't believe us as well.
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Old June 27th, 2012, 04:48 AM   #9
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For Sweden, there might have been a couple more decisive ones (Pultava 1709 for instance), but for humiliation these might do:

Kirkholm, 1605.
Overconfident, underqualified Swedes getting a massive and speedy trouncing by the numerically inferior Poles, who were the attacked party to boot. King Charles IX personally takes a hefty piece of the blame. Regarded as the worst Swedish military defeat before Pultava 1709, except the "Second Polish War" was eventually won, and the "Great Nordic War" lost, and a damn sight more embarassing as defeats go than Pultava.

Or possibly the surrender of Sveaborg Fortress in 1808.
The fortress was the key to any continued Swedes resistance to Russian invasion. It surrendered with the entire Swedish Archipelago Fleet in its harbours, and as it transpired the commander had numerical superiority over the Russian covering force on the shore, and more and heavier guns. The Russians had no siege artillery, and no way of taking the fortress by storm. Still, they kept up a steady nuisence fire using their field artillery, which somehow seriously rattled the Swedish fortress commander. They then invited himto "talks", at which they played on his fears like an instrument, eventually getting a timely surrender of a position they would otherwise had been months and large expenses away form taking by force. Worse, the entire Swedish war-plan hinged on a two pronged summer offensive through northern Finland, and up through southern Finland, with Sveaborg (Suomenlinna) as the necessary stepping-stone. With the forttress gone, needlessly, the entire campaign just became a kind of confused scram, and the war was lost, along with Finland in its entirity.
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Old June 27th, 2012, 05:23 AM   #10

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For Italy(in chronological order)

Battle of Lissa(1866)
Extremely poor leadership and no coordination whatsoever between the Italian ships turned a possible victory into an ignominious defeat.
There is also something sinisterly comic in this utter defeat(sailors so excited about the fight that forget to load their cannons)


Battle of Adwa(1896)
The Italians were eager to build up a large colonial empire but their first African campaign was marked by a total humiliation
An Italian army,almost wandering in the Ethiopian soil with no clue(inacurrate maps) was attacked and defeated by 100000 men commanded by the Negus himself.
It's the "Italian Isandlwana"(but we didn't have a Rorke's Drift)



Battle of Caporetto(1917)
Pretty simple: the Italian front line collapsed in a single day after an unexpected Austro-German attack




I'd like to add,even if technically speaking it's not Italy,the fall of the Republic of Venice(1797);the Most Serene Republic gave up without even fighting...There's nothing more dishonourable than that!
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