How do you defend against the Mongols?

Oct 2013
13,242
Europix
How do you feed these people? A relatively small band of cavalry can wreck the countryside while your forces are pined down, how much food stock can you have for not just your city but now your refugees? 6 month? A year? People will be clamoring for you to fight the foreign invaders, and your political legitimacy will be at risk. That's why a lot of battles take place, not because militarily it make sense but it must be done for political reasons.



Logistic simply doesn't support your idea. Only cities standing with river running through them could likely withstand these kind of investments. Otherwise they would be starved to submission.


You abandoned the countryside to them, you won't have much of a militia left.
But Marjusi, that kind of defense was used for centuries starting with the second Mongol invasion, mainly against OE and Golden Horde, and it worked!
 

Bart Dale

Ad Honorem
Dec 2009
7,095
How do you feed these people? A relatively small band of cavalry can wreck the countryside while your forces are pined down, how much food stock can you have for not just your city but now your refugees? 6 month? A year? People will be clamoring for you to fight the foreign invaders, and your political legitimacy will be at risk. That's why a lot of battles take place, not because militarily it make sense but it must be done for political reasons.
If you have taken all the food into your fortifications, and burnt the rest, how long can the Mongol raiders last, 3 months before they run out of supplies and have to leave?

It takes dizcipline and a certain harshness, but that is the strategy the Hungarian used to defeat the 2nd Mongol Invasion. The Hungarians holed up in numerous fortifications the Mongols couldn't take, and then came out and drove the Mongols out after they had been weekend by lack of supplies and repeared sallies launched from their fortifications.

Logistic simply doesn't support your idea. Only cities standing with river running through them could likely withstand these kind of investments. Otherwise they would be starved to submission.
Wells, cisterns can also provide water. If you practice a sorch earth policy, and the besiegers.don't have a good logistics system, the besiegerzs are just in as much danger as starving. If the city is well stocked in.preparation for siege, they can outlast the besiegers. And if the defenders practice a sorch earth policy to deny the invaders anything useful, it puts a lot of pressure on forces like Mongols depending on raiding for supplies. When the Mongol forces disperse to gather supplies, the hey can become vulnerable to sallies of defenders from their fortifications pick off the small parties gathering supplies. If a sally of 20 knights kill a party of 3 or 4 Mongols, and do this repeatedly, the losses will.add up on the Mongols.

These policies were actually successullybused against the Mongols. The 2nd Invasion of Hungary was a failure, as was the 3rd Invasion of Poland
You abandoned the countryside to them, you won't have much of a militia left.
The country side is lost to you regardless. Have your population flee to fortifications, or to safer lands where the Mongols didn't, and destroy everything tyou can't take with you but the Mongols could use. These sorched earth policies by defenders have been used forncenturies. They are rather hard on the common people, true, but they work.
 
Aug 2015
1,844
Los Angeles
If you have taken all the food into your fortifications, and burnt the rest, how long can the Mongol raiders last, 3 months before they run out of supplies and have to leave?
You think city dwellers and far flung villages' reaction speed is faster than a horse army? I mean why stop at that? Why didn't the defense also built series of fortifications and poison all the wells and burn all their crops before as well?

It takes dizcipline and a certain harshness, but that is the strategy the Hungarian used to defeat the 2nd Mongol Invasion. The Hungarians holed up in numerous fortifications the Mongols couldn't take, and then came out and drove the Mongols out after they had been weekend by lack of supplies and repeared sallies launched from their fortifications.
Defeated is a word I would not use.

Wells, cisterns can also provide water. If you practice a sorch earth policy, and the besiegers.don't have a good logistics system, the besiegerzs are just in as much danger as starving. If the city is well stocked in.preparation for siege, they can outlast the besiegers. And if the defenders practice a sorch earth policy to deny the invaders anything useful, it puts a lot of pressure on forces like Mongols depending on raiding for supplies. When the Mongol forces disperse to gather supplies, the hey can become vulnerable to sallies of defenders from their fortifications pick off the small parties gathering supplies. If a sally of 20 knights kill a party of 3 or 4 Mongols, and do this repeatedly, the losses will.add up on the Mongols.
You either took in a bunch of villagers, or you didn't. Take your pick. When people build a fortification they may consider water use for people in the fortifications, but we are talking about massive villagers moving their food and their family into the fortification.

These policies were actually successullybused against the Mongols. The 2nd Invasion of Hungary was a failure, as was the 3rd Invasion of Poland
The Mongols got what they wanted. They got captives and treasures.

The country side is lost to you regardless. Have your population flee to fortifications, or to safer lands where the Mongols didn't, and destroy everything tyou can't take with you but the Mongols could use. These sorched earth policies by defenders have been used forncenturies. They are rather hard on the common people, true, but they work.
It some times worked. Let's be very damn clear on this. Not everyone could use scorch earth, and it doesn't always work.
 
Aug 2015
1,844
Los Angeles
But Marjusi, that kind of defense was used for centuries starting with the second Mongol invasion, mainly against OE and Golden Horde, and it worked!
So are we starting the theoretical Indian unified government with all the knowledge already?

Also the point isn't very clear, what is the Mongol goal.
 
Feb 2011
6,156
From the Galician-Volhynian Chronicle:

6774 (1266). A revolt took place among the Tatars themselves. They slaughtered [as] many [of their own people] as there are grains of sand in the sea.....

6775 (1267). And [then] there was peace [in the land.].....

(February? 1285) 6790 (1282). The cursed and lawless [Khan] Nogaj set out against the Hungarians together with [Khan] Telebuga. [They came] in great force -with a great [host] of soldiers -and ordered the princes of Rus' - Lev, Mstislav, Volodimer, and Jurij Lvovic -to march with them. At that time Volodimer limped and did not [join the campaign] because he had a bad ulcer. However, he did send his army with his nephew Jurij. And thus they all went, for at that time the princes of Rus' were Tatar subjects. Volodimer alone remained [behind], because he limped…..

The cursed and lawless Nogaj started back with Telebuga, after they had pillaged the Hungarian land. [Then they separated], and Nogaj set out for Bra~ev, while Telebuga went through the [Carpathian] Mountains, which one could cross in three days. But he wandered thirty days in the mountains, driven [back and forth] by God's wrath. A great famine arose among [his men] and they began eating [their captives?].Then they started dying themselves [so that] a countless number of them perished and eyewitnesses testified that there was a hundred thousand dead. [Finally] the cursed and lawless Telebuga made his way on foot out [of the mountains] with his wife and one mare. [And thus he was] shamed by God.

(November 1286) 6791 (1283). The cursed and lawless Telebuga wanted to attack the Poles. He assembled a great force and forgetting the Divine punishment visited upon him in Hungary, which we had described previously, he came to Nogaj. [But since] both lived in great discord [at that time], Telebuga sent [couriers] to the princes from beyond the Dnieper and to the Volynian [princes] - Lev, Mstislav, and Volodimer - ordering them to come with him on his campaign [because] all the princes were Tatar subjects then. And thus Telebuga marched against the Poles after assembling a great host. When he reached the Gorinja [River, Prince] Mstislav [of Luck] met him with [alcoholic] beverages and gifts. From there [Telebuga] marched past Kremjanec toward Peremil' and here on the Lipa [River] he was [joined] by Prince Volodimer also bearing [alcoholic] beverages and gifts. And Prince Lev met him [likewise] after catching up with him near Buzkovici. After reaching the field of Buzsk, [Telebuga and the princes of Rus'] inspected their regiments. The princes feared that they would be killed [by the Tatars] and their cities taken, and hence they marched toward [the city of] Volodimer', coming to a halt in Zitan'. [Then] Telebuga went to reconnoitre the city of Volodimer', and some say that he might even have been in the city, but this is not certain. A week later, the second day after [the feast of] St.Nicholas, they marched past the city, and thus it was saved by God's will. They did not take the city, but did much violence [to it], robbing [its inhabitants] of countless supplies and horses. And thus [while] the godless Telebuga marched into Poland, some of the Tatars remained near Volodimer' to graze his ailing horses. They devastated the Volodimerian land and would not let anyone leave any [Volodimerian] city for food. [Those that dared to] come out, they either killed, captured, or robbed, taking away their horses. And thus through God's wrath a countless number of people perished during the siege of the [Volodimerian] cities. [In the meantime] Telebuga was marching into Poland in the company of all the princes [that were compelled to do so] by the Tatars: Prince Lev with his son Jurij, [Prince] Mstislav [at the head of his army] and [Prince] Volodimer [at the head of his]. And thus they marched on to Zavixvost and came to the Vistula. [This] river had not frozen yet, and they could not cross it. [Therefore] they marched to its upper reaches [at] Sudomir [where] they crossed the river Sjan over ice. Here on the Sjan Volodimer left them and went back. [Then] they crossed the Vistula over ice above Sudomir and approached the city from all [four] sides. However, they met with no success. (December/January 1286/87) [Thereupon] they began ravaging the Polish land, remaining in it ten days. Telebuga wanted to march to Cracow, but he did not reach it, turning back in Todk, for he learned that Nogaj [had reached] Cracow before him. And because of this there was [even] greater discord between them. Therefore, rather than join forces with Nogaj, [Telebuga] went back [and attacked] the Lvovian land [and its main] city - Lviv.

(January 1287) [The Tatars] remained in Lev's principality for two weeks living off the fat of the land. They did not engage in open warfare, but neither did they let anyone leave the city for food. [Of those that dared] leave the city, they would kill some, capture others, and rob [still] others, [releasing] them stark naked [to die] from the cold, because there was a very severe winter [that year]. And thus [the Tatars] devastated the whole country. God visited this [calamity] upon us for our sins, chastising us, so that we would repent for our evil and lawless acts. Finally He also visited His wrath upon us: A countless number of people perished during the siege [of] the cities and [still] others died in villages after leaving the cities [once] the godless sons of Hagar [ departed]. But let us return to our former narration: The accursed Nogaj [did not use the same route as Telebuga] to march into Poland. He took a [different] route in the direction of PeremySl' because there was great discord between them. He reached Cracow, but had no success [there] just as Telebuga had none at Sudomir. He ravaged the Polish land, but did not join forces with Telebuga because they were afraid of each other. [Then] they returned to their camps, Telebuga again using his route and Nogaj his. (1286/87) That winter there was a great plague in Poland [as a result of which] a countless number [of people] died. After Telebuga's and Nogaj's departure Prince Lev counted how many of his country's soldiers [had] died and how many people were either captured or killed or [had] perished by God's will. [And he counted] twenty-five thousand.
 
Oct 2013
13,242
Europix
So are we starting the theoretical Indian unified government with all the knowledge already?

Also the point isn't very clear, what is the Mongol goal.
IDK what the unified Indian government thing is all about.

Regardless of the Mongol goal, the second Mongol invasion was simply crushed. And the defence was organised (more or less) as depicted in the previous post.

And it's logical that it worked, as it largely denied the Mongol's advantages/strong points and emphasized the defender's (Hungarians in this case) advantages and strong points.

It's the very essence of winning, be it a war or a football match, after all.
 

Bart Dale

Ad Honorem
Dec 2009
7,095
You think city dwellers and far flung villages' reaction speed is faster than a horse army? I mean why stop at that? Why didn't the defense also built series of fortifications and poison all the wells and burn all their crops before as well?
Maybe they did burn the crops they could not harvest.

They Mongol armies did not come with the speed of light, and even a little warning ahead of time would allow villagers to flee, either the nearest fort or further away. Rivers could and did act as barriers to the Mongol forces and sliwed them up at times.


Defeated is a word I would not use.
There was no 3rd invasion of Hungary. Defeat is a valid word.


You either took in a bunch of villagers, or you didn't. Take your pick. When people build a fortification they may consider water use for people in the fortifications, but we are talking about massive villagers moving their food and their family into the fortification.
Not an either or chose. You take in as many villagers as you can, let the rest flee further away.

The Mongols got what they wanted. They got captives and treasures.
And they lost a lot of troops in the process. Did the few cows and people they captured pay for their losses? The fact they didn't come back again after that says it all.

It some times worked. Let's be very damn clear on this. Not everyone could use scorch earth, and it doesn't always work.
The fact the Mongols didn't come back after these tactics were implemented show they worked. Can you give an example where they didn't?
 
Aug 2015
1,844
Los Angeles
Maybe they did burn the crops they could not harvest.

They Mongol armies did not come with the speed of light, and even a little warning ahead of time would allow villagers to flee, either the nearest fort or further away. Rivers could and did act as barriers to the Mongol forces and sliwed them up at times.
Is that slower or faster than peasants moving carts of crap they have to use their own muscle to move?


There was no 3rd invasion of Hungary. Defeat is a valid word.
There were no Third Sino-Japanese War Bart. Can I then use your logic here and refute your claim that the Chinese could not defeat the Japanese?


Not an either or chose. You take in as many villagers as you can, let the rest flee further away.
So the Mongols just fleece you then. That's their typical tactics. Take what they can and soften you up. And rinse and repeat.

And they lost a lot of troops in the process. Did the few cows and people they captured pay for their losses? The fact they didn't come back again after that says it all.


The fact the Mongols didn't come back after these tactics were implemented show they worked. Can you give an example where they didn't?
Terrible logic.

The British didn't come back after the War of 1812. The Japanese didn't go back to China after the Second Sino-Japanese War.

War is politics by other means. Just because in some war something happen doesn't mean that thing in the war cause certain things to happen.
 
Aug 2015
1,844
Los Angeles
But Marjusi, that kind of defense was used for centuries starting with the second Mongol invasion, mainly against OE and Golden Horde, and it worked!
IDK what the unified Indian government thing is all about.

Regardless of the Mongol goal, the second Mongol invasion was simply crushed. And the defence was organised (more or less) as depicted in the previous post.

And it's logical that it worked, as it largely denied the Mongol's advantages/strong points and emphasized the defender's (Hungarians in this case) advantages and strong points.

It's the very essence of winning, be it a war or a football match, after all.
See post #188
 

SSDD

Ad Honorem
Aug 2014
3,900
India
How do you feed these people? A relatively small band of cavalry can wreck the countryside while your forces are pined down, how much food stock can you have for not just your city but now your refugees? 6 month? A year? People will be clamoring for you to fight the foreign invaders, and your political legitimacy will be at risk. That's why a lot of battles take place, not because militarily it make sense but it must be done for political reasons.
A City can stock foods for 90 days, all Indian cities have river. By that time in extremely hot weather of India's Mongols will be tired as they were actually. Besides that my scenario also has Rajput cavalry capable of horse back archery(unlike real life), so when Indian infantry protects forts and cities, Rajput cavalry goes out to engage. While making bows from horn, sinew not possible, wood and bamboo composite bows can be built and they will have draw weight of at least 120 lb.

If Indian Garrison of Lahore has 50,000 soldiers(including additional force cause of frequent Mongol attacks) 15,000 are cavalry, 15,000 pikeman, 15,000 archers, 5,000 elite shield bearers. Infantry stays in city while Cavalry goes out and engages Mongol force which at maximum numbered 40,000(except Taimur's raid), while Central army from Delhi is coming.

Logistic simply doesn't support your idea. Only cities standing with river running through them could likely withstand these kind of investments. Otherwise they would be starved to submission.
All Indian cities in Indus River Area had water supply.

You abandoned the countryside to them, you won't have much of a militia left.
If your force consists of 30,000 cavalry then you will not send all of them or even 1000 to attack a single village. Most like you will send 100-200 to attack a cluster of 3-4 villages. Under all caste inclusive Paik system, each village can put 100-120 militia members, if they remain in home, in house to house combat, they may put significant threat to Mongols.

Afterall Mongol forces here number only between 30,000-40,000 how long they can survive summer, militia everywhere. fortified cities, cavalry challenging them and another central army coming from Delhi?