Preparedness Notes for Thursday — December 26, 2019

On December 26th, 1777, after crossing the Delaware River, Washington led his men against Hessian soldiers garrisoned at Trenton. After a brief battle, nearly the entire Hessian force was captured, with negligible losses to the Americans, significantly boosting their flagging morale.


  1. “Because the river was icy and the weather severe, the crossing proved dangerous. Two detachments were unable to cross the river, leaving Washington with only 2,400 men under his command in the assault, 3,000 less than planned. The army marched ~>9 miles (14.5 km) south to Trenton.”

    “The Hessian forces lost 22 killed in action, 83 wounded, and ~~>896 captured–including the wounded. The Americans suffered only two deaths from bare feet causing frostbite and five wounded from battle, including a near-fatal shoulder wound to ~>future president James Monroe. … Other losses incurred by the Patriots due to exhaustion, exposure, and illness in the following days may have raised their losses above those of the Hessians.”
    [Wikipedia, Battle of Trenton]
    The USA always has the absolutely best people in its military; plus, most of the people in America are religious, and the military personnel more so. The Providence of God must guide and restrain the USA Military; we just need to listen to God.

    “WASHINGTON ― President Donald Trump said he plans to withdraw thousands of U.S. forces from Afghanistan, but will keep 8,600 there for the foreseeable future, pending the outcome of U.S. peace talks with the Taliban, which appear to be concluding.”

    “We’re going down to 8,600 and then we make a determination from there as to what happens,” Trump told Fox News Radio, repeating that the U.S. “could win that war so fast, if I wanted to kill 10 million people … which I don’t.”
    [Military Times, August 29, 2019]

    1. GGHD, for 20 years the U.S. Military has had their butts handed to them by ‘goat herders’ (The U.S. Military’s derogatory term not mine) driving beat up Toyota Tacoma pickups. How many more years will it take the “absolutely best people in its military” (your words not mine) to win this war? And specifically what will they have won? These are simple yet absolutely fundamental questions.

      You claim that “most of the people in America are religious, and the military personnel more so”. Would one person in the U.S. Military claiming to be honorable and righteous read the Washington Post’s ‘The Afghanistan Papers’ and articulate why Trump (and GW Bush and Obama) should not be immediately arrested and tried for war crimes against humanity?

      Would the Lord find even ten righteous men amongst us today?

      1. That is because we have taken on the role of peacekeepers and rebuilders. The problem is with the political leaders and the generals (also with the lawyers). The correct approach is “to kill them all and let god sort them out”. Or put another way the military should be given a specific task and then they should be allowed to accomplish it as quickly and as completely as possible.

        1. I agree that there is only one way to fight a war properly, and that is 100%. But the big proviso, is: Are we involved in some foreign country for a valid reason? Unfortunately, we often are not.

          1. Mr. Rawles, let’s take Afghanistan since the U.S. military has been waging war there for 20 years. What valid reason is there for the U.S. Military’s invasion and occupation or should they not be there?

        2. One Guy, The correct approach is “to kill them all and let god sort them out”.

          That policy resulted in three million civilian deaths by US ordnance in Vietnam. “Nuf said.

          Carry on

          1. I am not sure where you get your numbers from. 3 million death directly from American weapons??? I doubt it.

            We shouldn’t have been in Vietnam. That was a stupid mistake by an incompetent and inexperienced president, JFK, then a doubling down by a corrupt and incompetent replacement president, LBJ.

            War is hell. I am not a believer in putting our own troops at risk AND even putting the success of the battle at risk to save civilians. Sorry if that offends anyone but civilians are often used as human shields AND often more people die simply as a result of not prosecuting the war with full power and speed.

          2. But you asked for the Massacre of civilian noncombatants including Children.

            BTW, winning the battle and losing the war is no Victory.
            War is politics with other means.

          3. “Kill them all and let god sort them out” is an old expression that I first read in SOF (Soldier of Fortune) magazine. It does not mean the “Massacre of civilian noncombatants including Children”. If you have never heard it before or never heard it in context than I can understand your confusion.

          4. It does exactly meant that, it´s attributed(questionable at best) to the papal legate during the albensian crusade, in which way to handle the Non – Combatant´s of a stormed City including the catholics.

            That these words were spoken at this place and time is doubtful at best, that the People were massacred even in churches and including Children is not.

      2. Montana Guy, The Afghanistan PApers should be read if only for the quotes by the three and four-star generals.

        Frightening what they say about the war effort.

        Carry on

        1. Once a Marine, you are so right. They are precious. It’s the first real journalism I’ve seen in long time. Gee, why would they wait until the busy Christmas season to release it? And now its behind a pay-wall. Yea Once a Marine, you know.

          Keep safe friend and KYPD.

  2. If you haven’t seen Newt Gingrich’s speech about the crossing of the Delaware you have got to see it. I found it on YouTube. As he tells the story most of the soldiers had gone home for the winter, Washington knew if they didn’t score a big win soon the Army would fall apart. As the boats went across one person in each boat read Thomas Paines “the Crisis” which was specifically written at the request of Gen. Washington for the mission. Amazing story! Even more amazing was the grit of those soldiers.

    1. 3AD Scout, that interesting about what our soldiers heard while getting ready for a major battle. Thanks.

      Have you read ‘The Narrative of Joseph Plumb Martin’? It is an invaluable memoir from an ordinary soldier in extraordinary times. I’m re-reading it right now.

  3. We need a military draft so that our forces are composed of a real representation of our country, all socio-economic classes involved.

    And, I believe the next charge into the deserts of Afghanistan, or Iraq, or Somalia, or wherever should be led by a battalion of our esteemed and brave politicians who are so willing and eager to send someone else’s sons and daughters into battle.

    I am weary of seeing our troops exposed and in danger all to satisfy some politicians craving for power, send the damn politicians to fight their own wars, bring our troops home. Let the cowardly politicians stop their incessant squabbling in DC and do a real job, they most certainly accomplish nothing for the past decade. They can’t even do a budget for God’s sake, why are we putting up with this?

  4. B-Minus Time Traveler
    from ‘The Ben Stiller Show’ (1992)

    “With nothing but a B-minus average from an American public school, she plunges through space and time, helping whomever she can with her vague sketchy knowledge of American history.”

    “She was always the one who asked ‘why do we need to know this stuff?’ Now she has her answer.”

    “It’s an endless pop quiz. And now she wishes she had done the reading.”

    “She never thought she’d be tested on this.”

  5. I placed a comment here, that may have been lost in posting. = The USA has one of the most Honorable Military, in the history of the world.
    An official Trump comment about Afghanistan from the Whitehouse 8/21/2017 (in part) =

    … “After many meetings, over many months, we held our final meeting last Friday at Camp David, with my Cabinet and generals, to complete our strategy. I arrived at three fundamental conclusions about America’s core interests in Afghanistan.

    First, our nation must seek an honorable and enduring outcome worthy of the tremendous sacrifices that have been made, especially the sacrifices of lives. The men and women who serve our nation in combat deserve a plan for victory. They deserve the tools they need, and the trust they have earned, to fight and to win.

    Second, the consequences of a rapid exit are both predictable and unacceptable. 9/11, the worst terrorist attack in our history, was planned and directed from Afghanistan because that country was ruled by a government that gave comfort and shelter to terrorists. A hasty withdrawal would create a vacuum that terrorists, including ISIS and al Qaeda, would instantly fill, just as happened before September 11th.

    And, as we know, in 2011, America hastily and mistakenly withdrew from Iraq. As a result, our hard-won gains slipped back into the hands of terrorist enemies. Our soldiers watched as cities they had fought for, and bled to liberate, and won, were occupied by a terrorist group called ISIS. The vacuum we created by leaving too soon gave safe haven for ISIS to spread, to grow, recruit, and launch attacks. We cannot repeat in Afghanistan the mistake our leaders made in Iraq.

    Third and finally, I concluded that the security threats we face in Afghanistan and the broader region are immense. Today, 20 U.S.-designated foreign terrorist organizations are active in Afghanistan and Pakistan — the highest concentration in any region anywhere in the world.

    For its part, Pakistan often gives safe haven to agents of chaos, violence, and terror. The threat is worse because Pakistan and India are two nuclear-armed states whose tense relations threaten to spiral into conflict. And that could happen.

    No one denies that we have inherited a challenging and troubling situation in Afghanistan and South Asia, but we do not have the luxury of going back in time and making different or better decisions. ” …

  6. Regarding ThoDan’s comment.

    To the best of my knowledge, that phrase, “Kill them all and let god sort them out” was also used in Vietnam by some, emphasis on “some”, Marines to rationalize the murder of villagers. Given, the Viet Cong used people as shields and sowed doubt as to who was innocent and who was enemy.

    War is not linear and scared combatants will sometimes do horrific things.

    Carry on

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