Greatest military units of all time

How about the 173rd airborne Brigade in Vietnam?
What about the Royal Australian Regiment in Korea and in Vietnam?
If I had more time I could add a lot more.

Yea an old quote but I just caught it. I have worked with a guy who was in the 173rd during Vietnam, they we pretty astonishing. A company or 2 held out against a astranomical number advantage for the enemy side. I am thinking it was an entire regiment of North Vietnamese. They stood their ground and fought to the death.
How about the battle of Dien Bien Phu
And especially the role of the paratroopers of the Foreign Legion.
The para regiments: 1e Régiment Étranger de Parachutistes, (1e REP)
and 2e Régiment Étranger de Parachutistes, (2e REP)
saw some of the fiercest fighting ever, under absolute hopeless conditions…

But compared to the third battle @ Yper / Paschendale nothing comes close!


(2e REP) @ Dien Bien Phu
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Since The Watch Is always worthy of mention.

The Infamies 13th BATT 1st Canadian Division Black Watch:salute2: AKA "The Ladies From Hell'!

Their Heroic, Gallantry, "Dead Gameness" is undeniable out of 5,560 men Over 3/4 of the Men were all casualties.
With 3 Victoria Crosses and over 1500 decorations for Valuer.


Total of nominal Roll 5,560

Total of Officers who served 251

Officers promoted from the Ranks
( Not included those Commission to Imperial Army Unites ) 100

Officers Killed 50

O.R. Killed 1,055

Officers Missing 2

O.R. Missing 123

Officers Wounded 135

O.R. Wounded 3,019

Total Officers Casualties 188

Total O.R Casualties 4,257

Battalion Casualties 4,445

Total all Ranks Dead 1,291

One of the Saddest events was the Accrington Pals Battalion of WW1. At the start of WW1 in Britain people were encouraged to join up together and fight in the same unit, but this brought its own problems. When 720 lads from the Accrington Pals went over the top 584 were killed or wounded on the first day, and by the end of the war just 76 of them returned home. It is one of the reasons that many of the local Regiments have people from other parts of the British Isle drafted into them so that whole generations from villages and towns are not wiped in a day
The "Diggers" of the Kakoda Trail over the Owens-Stanley


Andy Jacksons rag-tag Army at Chalmette sent the same Army that beat Napolean packing !:rockin:
We suffered 21 casualties, you lost entire Regiments.
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I can't believe the first post didn't include the French Foreign Legion in the Battle of Camarón.

62 Soldiers and 3 Officers stood against a Mexican army over 2000 men strong.

The part in my mind that stands out was the final stand.

(source wiki)
At 5 p.m only 12 Légionnaires remain around 2nd Lt. Maudet. Soonafter, with ammunition exhausted, the last of Danjou's soldiers, numbering only five under the command of Lt. Maudet, desperately mounted a bayonet charge. Two men died outright, while the rest continued the assault. The tiny group was surrounded and beaten to the earth. Colonel Milan, commander of the Mexicans, managed to prevent his men from ripping the surviving legionnaires to pieces. When the last two survivors were asked to surrender, they insisted that Mexican soldiers allow them safe passage home, to keep their arms, and to escort the body of Captain Danjou. To that, the Mexican commander commented, "What can I refuse to such men? No, these are not men, they are devils," and, out of respect, agreed to these terms.
Or the Battle of Wizna in Poland, 1939.

In which 720 Polish soldiers with only 6 AT guns and few machine guns, fought against a German force of over 42,000 men with over 300 tanks and air support.

The Polish fought till almost the very last men and were then forced to surrender. Out of the original 720, only 40 survived. The Captain even threw him self on a grenade rather than surrender.

However 10 Tanks, multiple other armored vehicles, many aircraft, and over 8000 men were lost by the Germans.

Even though the Polish were defeated, they consider this to be a victory just because of the amazing odds they fought against. It is even referred to as the Polish Thermopylae.
There's so many to mention but I'll just hit on some recent units.

The Aussies on the Kokodo trail in New Guinea during WWII.

3/5, 3/6/, and 1/6 Marine regiments at Belleau Wood in WWI.

Basically any Marine in the Pacific during WWII.

The Allied Army going into Normandy.

1st Mar Div in Korea(Inchon)

1st Cav Division Korea(the rest of the war)

15th Infantry Regiment in WWII(more days on the line than any other regiment in the US military during WWII)

Merrels Marauders in Burma.

The Brits and Indians at Kohima and Imphal *(spelling)

The Airborne Divisions in Market Garden

173rd Airborne in Vietnam (particularly in and around Dak To 1967)

The Finns in the Winter War...this goes without saying!

US Seal, SF, LRRP, Ranger, MACV-SOG in Vietnam

Australian SAS in Vietnam

The Soldiers and Marines of the ROK in Vietnam(my dad worked with them as a Marine in Vietnam and he said they were just awsome!)

1/9, 3/9, 26th Marines, 1/5, and 3/5 Marine Regiments in Vietnam 1967-68

FACs Vietnam

The Japanese Army in Malaya/Singapore

3rd Infantry Div and 1st Mar Div OIF 1

10th Mountain Div and 101st ABN OEF 1 (operation Anaconda)

Oh the list could go on and on, these are just a few off the top of my head.

To answer the question on US soldiers being trained in Call for fires, the answer is YES. All soldiers are introduced to Calling for fire during their initial entry training and is one of hundreds of the Basic Soldiers skills they are supposed to retain throughout their tenure in the Army. BUT, the US army has specialists in FOs and Fire Support Officers that are assigned to every Armour/Infantry company in the Army. All soldiers are expected to be able to do a basic call for fire, but since we have so many FOs, they rarely get the chance to do it. Once the soldier makes it to the rank of NCO/ Officer they much more in depth on calling for, setting up TRPs, stacking air assets, co-ordinating fires between different Mortar and Arty assets, etc.
The Korean Marine Corps during the Vietnam War. They were astonishing.
Some 300 soldiers held against 2400 enemy soldiers at one time
192 kills for only 11 killed during one battle
Kill ratio of 25:1
204 enemies killed without even one soldier killed in one battle

Some other astounding stories I hear...I wonder why they weren't included in the list...I think the Korean veterans of the Vietnam War would be emotionally hurt...
All the UK/DK and other ISAF troops involved in the defence, releif, resupply and fighting in and around the Platoon Houses (District Centers) in Sangin, Kajaki, Now Zad and Musa Qala, Helmand provins, Afghanistan - in 2006-2007.

Cpl. Bryan Budd (RIP) of A Company (3PARA), 3rd Battalion, The Parachute Regiment, was posthumously awarded the Victoria Cross for his actions during the fighting around Sangin. This being the first posthumous VC awarded since the Falklands, and only the 13th VC awarded since WW2.

Other ref.:
The Knights of St John

Has any one ever considered them for this title....If you look at the feat of arms in the 1540's when the Ottam Empire invaded Malta and some 600 of these knights fought a Turkish force of 150.000 men to a stand still and making them withdraw from Malta
Agreed Enfield, the original post does injustice to the The Knights Hospitaller of Jerusalem, Rhodes and Malta. Their Military achievements far eclipse anything the Templars have ever done. suffice it to say that their heroic victory in the Great Siege of Malta and their contribution to the victory at Lepanto alone have literally defined the course of History. if there is a fighting force that consistently punched above their weight - it must surely be them.

however slight correction to the size of the invading force. Most historians now agree that the ottomans numbered anything between 25-60000 - still no joke, the defence was conducted by 600, Knights, circa 2000 spanish and italian soldiers and 6,000 Maltese Militia (who incidentally bore most of the brunt of the fighting and suffeing
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I think you find that the Turks took around 150.000 men to Malta but as you say about 60.000 of them were fighting men the rest were cooks and bottle washers so to speak and other supporting arms
How about Jan Ziizika and the Hussies in the early 1400’s?
The first war in Europe where firearms were decisive and Ziizika’s use of wagons with cannons mounted on them foretold modern artillery and armor.
Greastest military units of all time

i would just like to thank Easy-8 and Doppleganger for the brilliant information on the waffen ss divisions i have enjoyed reading it thanks :smile:
Pre Middle Ages

- Persians under Cyrus the Great
- Spartans at Thermopylae
- Macedonians Army under Alexander the Great
- Romans in almost every war/battle they fought
- Carthaginian Army under Hannibal
- Visigothic heavy Cavalry at Adrianople in 378 and Chalons in 451
- The slave rebellion in Rome under Spartacus
- Germanic tribial fighters at Teutoburg Forest
- Huns under Attila

i will add (the pharaonic army under ramsis and ahmos in Pre Middle Ages).
How about Jan Ziizika and the Hussies in the early 1400’s?
The first war in Europe where firearms were decisive and Ziizika’s use of wagons with cannons mounted on them foretold modern artillery and armor.
Not really, the tabor was decisive (hence the taborites) also the Czechs used crossbows extensively, the gonnes and artillery were far too primitive to have impact.