Sun, 19 April 2020
When a contingent of archers is mentioned in the context of Greek and Roman armies, more often than not the culture associated with them is that of Crete. Indeed, when we just have archers mentioned in an army without a specified origin, Cretan archers are commonly assumed to be meant, so ubiquitous with archery and groups of mercenary archers were the Cretans. The Cretans are the most famous, but certainly not the only ‘nation’ associated with a particular fighting style (Rhodian slingers and Thracian peltasts leap to mind but there are others too). The long history of Cretan archers can be seen in the sources – according to some stretching from the First Messenian War right down to the fall of Constantinople in 1453. Even in the reliable historical record we find Cretan archer units from the Peloponnesian War well into the Roman period. Dur: 14mins File: .mp3
Direct download: 2804_The_Ubiquity_of_the_Cretan_Archer_in_Ancient_Warfare.mp3
Category:military -- posted at: 12:00pm UTC
Sun, 5 April 2020
Bougainville is a 9000 sq. km pacific island and was first subject to European contact in 1768 when Louis Antoine De Bougainville landed there and, in an act of typical vainglory, named it for himself. People had been on Bougainville for 28,000 years but it was the Austronesian people who 4,000 years ago established pigs, chickens, dogs and cultivation with obsidian tools. The Comte De Bougainville was every bit the equal of James Cook and it was he who established the Falkland Islands, circumnavigated the globe and fought as a captain of dragoons in the what was effectively the first world war, the 7 years’ war between England and France. As an Admiral he sailed south from Tahiti and nearly discovered the Great Barrier Reef then in 1768 encountered Bougainville, east of Papua New Guinea. The wonderful variegated coloured flower, Bougainvillea, is named for him. The island is a natural wonder and historical treasure.
This episode was written by Lt Col Chris Alroe.
Chris was an Australian Army Officer and specialist medical practitioner who spent twenty-one years full and part time in the Australian Defence Forces. He was at one time SMO 11 BDE and later appointed SMO 3 BDE, retiring from the army before taking up the appointment. During Operation Bel Isi commenced 1999, the UN Peace Keeping Mission to the Island of Bougainville after the civil war there, he was appointed Officer Commanding the Combined Health Element for the mission. He was commended by the Brigadier of the Mission for his survey of New Guinea Health services which he conducted as part of the plan to complete the Mission.