Friday, July 21, 2006

The Undying yet Ironical Significance of Trần Hưng Đạo: A Summary

This particular Vietnamese general was the only guy to kick the Mongol horde’s asses twice. That’s quite a feat. I can’t think of anyone else who pulled this off. Not the Russians, not the Chinese and not the Persians. The Japanese came closest, but it was a typhoon that did the Mongols the second time around.

I like to think of those campaigns as an early form of Fourth generation warfare. He was a smart guy. He let the bulk of the Mongol army die of "tropical diseases" (read: "malaria") first before tackling them.

The irony is that while this country is justifiably proud of this man, they still won’t show his face on the banknotes.

(This post was inspired by a particular Crooked Timber thread, which asks "what would be the most off-putting title in the world?")