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Subject: The Tiger's Way: A U.S. Private's Best Chance for Survival
JohnBarry    4/4/2005 12:09:18 PM
I would like any Infantryman's opinion of John Poole’s book “The Tiger's Way: A U.S. Private's Best Chance for Survival”. For those who haven’t read it is a book how America should improve it’s tacitical skill and fieldcraft by being trained in the “Eastern Way” of war. In the book it details how many(mostly Eastern armies) have learn to deal with America’s overwhelming high tech advantage with high levels of training in fieldcraft, camoflage, shalking and small initiative. It is the old thing of America dealing with every problem with a technoloical solution. Using night operations as an example, the US dealt with the problem with NVG. Poole argues against well trained opponents, that doesn’t create solve the problem and can create new ones. Using and depending on NVG, American troops may be able to see cleanly the six bushes around them, but not notice one of the bushes is not in the same position it was half and hour ago. NVG also can flood the sences and downgrade a person other sences like hearing. Poole also claims that even with all the talk the US Army has about initiative, many Communist troops had more autonomy in planning and training than there American counterparts. Any thoughts on the book and if the US does need to change and what actions the US Army needs to take.
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PeregrinePike    RE:The Tiger's Way: A U.S. Private's Best Chance for Survival   4/5/2005 3:07:02 PM
I havent read the book... and will do so as soon as I get a chance ;-) But a thought on the "technology degrades perception" issue: I think there is a small time-delay in the evolution of an infantryman between the US and its Eastern counterparts.... which is rapidly being overcome to negate some of the arguments in a comparative analysis as this. Just recently a poster in the China board revealed that China is adopting "everybody rides" to motorize all its infantry... thus degrading the pesant-instincts for foot-borne infantry it had. Meanwhile, since almost every American teen knows how to drive - he/she is is becomming more modular in the military machine. When any Chinese (or Viet) could navigate through terrain on foot it seemed a disadvantage to the suburban-raised US troops. Now that all US soldiers can drive, and only a few among the Chinese can drive in a motorized infantry... the tables are turning (actually the table is being evened out). Same thing holds true for the sub-command structures and initiative: When any Chinese or Viet Captain needed only a few supplies from a way-side village he could ignore and usurp command from above... now if he/she needs gas they HAVE to follow the proper chains of command (which I believe US is better at navigating through) Just my 2 cents ;-)
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terrain21u    RE:The Tiger's Way: A U.S. Private's Best Chance for Survival   4/8/2005 6:42:23 PM
I was not infantry, but I did read the book. I can't make too much comment on the aplication or anything, but I do have a few thoughts on the book. It had some good points and its weak points. One of the weak points, IMO, was the continued theme of the "super stealthy ninja super warrior." I think he overstated a lot of the abilities of "eastern" warriors. I think this does the most damage to his arguments, but if you can get past this the author has some good points. The other thing was that he seemed to assume that these techniques all derived from a single source, so he starts reaching when he tries to connect the German and Russian techniques in WWI and WWII to older Eastern ways of war. He does not seem to think that, maybe, the techniques of the Germans and the Russians were developed independently and under other circumstances. One of the good points, I thought, was the call for increased levels of individual training and initiative. A lot of failings in these areas I think have to do with organization and structure as much as they do with just lacking training. But, the emphasis initiative and training is always nice to to see. Poole's points on developing other ways to solve a tactical problem other than "fall back and call for more fire" was another good point of the book. And of course, his stance that technology cannot solve all problems and should be used as a tool, not as a panacea. I can't comment too much on the ways he suggested for implementing these ideas because I don't have a lot of experience with actual infantry training and it has also been awhile since I read the book, so I'm a little vauge on a lot of the details and I'm just going off the majors points I pulled from it. I'd have to look at it again to say much more. Sorry I can't offer too much more.
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Worcester    RE:The Tiger's Way: A U.S. Private's Best Chance for Survival   4/8/2005 8:27:40 PM
Haven't read it yet but will. BTW there are a whole host of combat examples of troops with better NVG being beaten by troops with little or none at all. The latter usually have better fieldcraft and night operations experience. NVG of itself does absolutely nothing for poor troops who will always be at a disadvantage at night. We do have some very good, world class units who can dp the night-ops thing with or without NVG. But it has to be said the general standard of fieldcraft, even for so-called front line infantry, is still not as good as it could be. One gets the impression it's much cheaper to issue NVGs to short-term emlistees than give them the extended and intensive field time...which, of course, they wont be in long enough to complete.
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Worcester    RE:The Tiger's Way: A U.S. Private's Best Chance for Survival   4/8/2005 8:34:40 PM
From personal experience I used to insist all training included night fact I think most of our movement was at night following on from the assumption (like the Germans in WW2) that we wouldn't control the air against the Soviets. Initially the guys assumed they didnt have to use camouflage because "it's dark", but the introduction of Infra Red, Doppler pulse and then Starscopes and passive NVG changed their minds pretty fast. The message is that NVG actually INCREASES the need for good fieldcraft at night.
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Whiskey Bravo       6/28/2009 6:55:30 PM
If you look at an obscure fact of WW2 history; you'll find out that the Japanese Government hired Seiko Fujita to train espionage agents, ingun & Japanese Naval Commandos in many aspects of ninjutsu; stealth, meditation, depersonalization and such was a large portion of this. Such organizations trained guerrillas in China & Burma which applied such derived techniques. I'm not saying they were all "ninja warriors" but that there is a reaccuring theme in Eastern & Western Guerrilla Tactics which draws historically as begun in the Middle East and moved outward (the oldest case being from the Old Testament Bible). A rare exception to this rule is the American Indian Fighters; were reputed to have the same "Mystical Ninja Skills" all derived from Native American Culture. While it seems thay human nature is abound with such examples and philosophies (A common pop-culture image being the ninja).
As someone who was Infantry & who supplimented my Infantry training with some individual self-styled training drawing from eastern infantry manuals. Well their camouflage and individual movement is far better then our own. I've implimented some of those tactics while playing OpFor and had great success. In actual combat I don't know...
I found Tigers Way & Night Movements at the Liberary on post and own both now, bought them off Amazon...
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