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Col. Wood Unwittingly Defends Durnford At Isandhlwana ?
Colin


Joined: 22 Nov 2017
Posts: 266
Location: U.K.
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I’ve reread the book by French, Lord Chelmsford And The Zulu War 1879.

This book annoys me, but there is an interesting account of a letter by Wood to Lord Chelmsford dated February 3rd (page 107)

‘One Point seems to me quite clear that though our columns are capable of dispersing Zulus fighting as tribes only, as were those beaten by No.1 and No.4 Columns, two battalions are not enough to cope with 15,000 or 20,000 Zulus formed in regiments. I said on the 24th January ‘those men opposite to us are fighting as separate tribes.’ This we now know as fact. In a chosen position I believe the two battalions will repulse any number of Zulus, but one cannot always get the position....’

So for all Chelmsford’s opinion in the Isandhlwana aftermath, the defenders could have held, even though in a bad position and only 6 companies, he having taken most of the 2/24th with him, here we have a military expert saying even two whole battalions couldn’t defeat a Zulu Army of 15 - 20,000 formed in regiments, if the former weren’t in a chosen position.

Can anyone confirm this letter by Wood ? As for all French’s book is a blatant defence of Chelmsford, by quoting this, he has actually shown the latter lied.

Many thanks in advance...

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Col. Wood Unwittingly Defends Durnford At Isandhlwana ?
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