Friday, March 5, 2010

Volume I, Book II, Chapter XIV

I am at the Beverly Hilton, where I just finished stage managing an event. I'm hoping to make it home by midnight to post this, but I thought I'd take a sec and read the new chapter and write about it, while the band downstairs is playing "Sexy Back". Besides, when do you get to just hang out in a nice hotel room?

Would that the chapter was a little more interesting. Lots of strategy, which I believe boils down to this:

Bagration - 4,000 troops
Kuzutov - 40,000 troops
French - 150,000 troops.

It's the first of November,Everyone's racing to Znaim from Vienna, where the French played that bridge trick. Kuzutov's army has two choices - end up cut off from the larger Russian army if they stay in Krems where they are and toward which the French are heading, or retreating and fighting on the way. They choose the second option. Meanwhile, he also tries to trick the French the way they did the Russians, and pause fighting, which will give his troops time to get ahead while Bagration's troops wait for the fake surrender offered.

Napoleon sees through this, and orders his General Murat to attack. He so doesn't believe that he will do it fast enough, that he leaves Vienna to bear down on Bagration's troops, who are waiting unbeknownst of the horror that will more than likely befall them very soon.

I think that's it - frankly, I had to read it a few times, and Austrian place names are a little lost on me.

And we think at this moment - good thing Kuzutov told Andrei to stay with him rather than Bagration. This can't be good. It's mid-November, too. It must be getting cold....

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