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Thread: What if? Roman Army vs. USMC MEU

  1. #31
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    chogy,

    Press on to the New World, now you've got American Natives to deal with, and they were true guerilla warriors who could attrit you despite your technology. I think I'd hang out in the Med. That was the center of the world at the time, with a delightful climate, easy trading partners, and known civilizations that have the acumen to ally with you.
    not in the roman era they weren't. there's a LOT less population density in the new world at the time, and here the technology differential is even greater. even more diseases to contend with, too.

    plus, all they have to do is to avoid the almost deliberately inflammatory actions of the original european settlers and they should be golden.

    it would be more like how white people first went into california. within a decade or so the entire native population was wiped out and the europeans barely noticed. contrast this when they went up against much more organized opposition such as the iroquois and the seneca confederacy.

    although i agree with you that i'd have the main base, to begin with, in the mediterranean. you could soon look at outposts in brazil, argentina, south africa, eastern coast of north america, mauritius, sri lanka, and australia, although in the case of mauritius and sri lanka i'd only go there once some semblance of medicine is back up and running.

    the issue is numbers. if you take a whole MEU plus all the assorted support personnel i wonder how many thousands that would be.
    Last edited by astralis; 18 Jan 12, at 18:23.
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  2. #32
    Senior Contributor Stitch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by S2 View Post
    There's a lot of institutional knowledge available in that MEU. Additionally there's a lot of accrued knowledge readily available. Imperative that leaders, without regard for rank, seek out everything everybody knows. Electrical power to run P.C.s and other devices would be critical and your mechanics and more will have to begin designing crude batteries that can store such. When I think of a MEU I wonder how much of the ship's stores were transported to ground before everything was teleported back 21 centuries or so. There's clearly a LOT of onboard fuel, batteries and ammo to replenish those forces from these vessels. Finally, do they have an air component that's made it into the past?

    One fly-by over Rome and I suspect all will bow to the Gods.
    S2 has a point; did their LHA/LHD make it back in time, too? Did the Marines run into the Romans a few miles inshore? If so, that means they should have access to AH-1W's, AV-8B's, and MV-22's, so firepower definitely is not a problem. But the ship probably won't want to move very far, if at all, since it has a limited supply of fuel oil onboard; the Marines would have to husband their resources in order to keep the ship operating for as long as possible.

    Eventually, however, the Marines WILL have to leave the ship, and set-up camp on the mainland, which should probably be done sooner rather than later so they'll be prepared for when the supplies DO run out.
    "There is never enough time to do or say all the things that we would wish. The thing is to try to do as much as you can in the time that you have. Remember Scrooge, time is short, and suddenly, you're not there any more." -Ghost of Christmas Present, Scrooge

  3. #33
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    afaik they have sea knight hellos that make the initial contact, not sure about LHA.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stitch View Post
    S2 has a point; did their LHA/LHD make it back in time, too? Did the Marines run into the Romans a few miles inshore? If so, that means they should have access to AH-1W's, AV-8B's, and MV-22's, so firepower definitely is not a problem. But the ship probably won't want to move very far, if at all, since it has a limited supply of fuel oil onboard; the Marines would have to husband their resources in order to keep the ship operating for as long as possible.

    Eventually, however, the Marines WILL have to leave the ship, and set-up camp on the mainland, which should probably be done sooner rather than later so they'll be prepared for when the supplies DO run out.
    My list above is an accurate account of what an MEU carries into battle. My cousin who was on the Tarawa said they carried 15 days of supplies for all forces abaord...One 155mm artillery shell is probably equal to a phalanx of archers loosing arrows...

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    The problem with that is after you hit them with a couple 155mm shells, they'll learn to spread their archers along a broad line instead of bunching them. A single shell will then take out a fraction of the archers, thereby losing it's effectiveness and the artillery mission will need to changed while still hoarding their supplies, perhaps for use in sieges instead of pitched battles
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    My cousin who was on the Tarawa said they carried 15 days of supplies for all forces aboard
    That's another question. Do they keep 15 days of supplies, or a minimum of 15 days? If they are transported back in time right after an UNREP, they could have more than 15 days of supplies, and this of course will feature in the force projections and supply levels
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stitch View Post
    S2 has a point; did their LHA/LHD make it back in time, too? Did the Marines run into the Romans a few miles inshore? If so, that means they should have access to AH-1W's, AV-8B's, and MV-22's, so firepower definitely is not a problem. But the ship probably won't want to move very far, if at all, since it has a limited supply of fuel oil onboard; the Marines would have to husband their resources in order to keep the ship operating for as long as possible.

    Eventually, however, the Marines WILL have to leave the ship, and set-up camp on the mainland, which should probably be done sooner rather than later so they'll be prepared for when the supplies DO run out.
    The will beach the ship where ever it is they want to set up and begin breaking her up, that ship is their only source of copper wire, alloy steel, aluminum, insulation and a thousand other things that cannot be replaced until there is a working electrical grid capable of supporting modern industrial processes for metals and chemicals. Just hope the captain of the vessel knows something is wrong with the world, not just with some of his ships technology or he may run that priceless ship aground and sink her and kill a lot of the marines and deny them their equipment.

    Astrailis,

    pre-Columbian Mezzoamerican population densities were much higher, not lower. The entire continent likely had the densities seen by the English in New England. Desoto reports facing thousands of warriors from cities in his trek across Arkansas. A hundred years alter Arkansas was virtually depopulated and the memory of those people was gone.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bigross86 View Post
    The problem with that is after you hit them with a couple 155mm shells, they'll learn to spread their archers along a broad line instead of bunching them. A single shell will then take out a fraction of the archers, thereby losing it's effectiveness and the artillery mission will need to changed while still hoarding their supplies, perhaps for use in sieges instead of pitched battles
    They could do that but they are Romans. The phalanx is their life. Look at their encounters with cavalry. The phalanx never broke or seperated.

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    What are the chances of using their LHA/LHD as a power station? Converting their power plant to coal burned and therefore having a near unlimited supply of fuel?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tanker View Post
    They could do that but they are Romans. The phalanx is their life. Look at their encounters with cavalry. The phalanx never broke or seperated.
    History is nice, but once a couple shells take out a couple phalanxes, even the dumbest general will realize that it's just not worth it... Tactics develop in warfare, if they don't, you lose.
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  11. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by bigross86 View Post
    History is nice, but once a couple shells take out a couple phalanxes, even the dumbest general will realize that it's just not worth it... Tactics develop in warfare, if they don't, you lose.
    that would be the Greeks, the roman legion fought on 3 lines of 3 to 4 cohorts.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chogy View Post
    A good chemist would be one of the most valuable personnel you'd have. Smokeless powder as well is not that far away. Nitric acid and sulphuric acid, plus cellulose. Cotton. Guncotton also makes handy filler for mortar shells and the like, with the only drawback being a limited shelf life and sensitivity to heat.

    The MEU would also bring with it modern notions of hygiene, healthcare, and medicines, although actually making medicines would be exceptionally difficult. The corpsman/doctor would be like the chemist; a State treasure and closely guarded. Both would immediately need to be assigned disciples/novices who would learn and also record all the knowledge in the man's brain. Without scribes and effort, massive amounts of 21st century knowledge would be lost with every KIA, and within a generation or two, without care, much would be irretrievably lost.
    speaking of a good chemist being the most valuable personnel the knowledge white phosphorus and Greek fire is always useful even if most of the original resources are exhausted.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bigross86 View Post
    That's another question. Do they keep 15 days of supplies, or a minimum of 15 days? If they are transported back in time right after an UNREP, they could have more than 15 days of supplies, and this of course will feature in the force projections and supply levels
    He was on a 14 day rotation through South America training South American marines. According to him they carry what they need for major deployments. But he also said that T-AKE ships were somewhere nearby as well...so maybe we bring a 2 product cargo ship with us too

  14. #44
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    As usual on this board, the OP's questions are being gloriously ignored and the thread is taking on a life of it's own.

    The original question was not how well the MEU will hold out or how long it'll be relevent.

    The question was how will it take Rome.

    So, with that in mind, what's to stop them from shelling Rome and killing all the leaders within a couple of days of getting there.

    They're going to be invincible and pretty much can do whatever they want for the first few months and that's more than ample time to kill everything in Rome that matters.
    Last edited by YellowFever; 18 Jan 12, at 20:11.

  15. #45
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    taking Rome is not the problem since most of the legions were abroad , maybe a hastily setup citizen militia and the praetorian guard is all that Rome has in 23 BC.
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