Post by on May 1, 2009 7:01:29 GMT -5
More specific to your question, yes, I believe that was MAJ Reno's contention...that he did not have enough men to encompass the entire group of trees, with fields of fire into open areas around the trees that the Warriors would never be able to cross.
He felt that in that position there would always be a "covered approach" into his perimeter through the timber, so the Warriors could infiltrate up to it with "cover and concealment."
Those who contend Reno could have defended in the woods anyway are saying that in those areas where the woods come right into his perimeter he would have had to reinforce it enough to keep masses of Warriors from overrunning that vulnerable spot.
So the woods were a two-edged sword...it gave the defenders cover against Indian plunging arrow fire, but it also allowed the attackers an infiltration route close to the perimeter.
As you know from Vietnam experience, when the Army occupied positions in the jungle/woods, we always tried to cut down the trees all around the perimeter to prevent enemy mass infiltration up close to the wire. Same principle at work.