The Naumi Invaders are the massive military force of the Naum people and empire, that find their home in northern Scandinavia (modern Finland, Sweden, and Norway). The military has mostly been to protect against invaders and hold Naum lands, not much expansion. Numbering around 45,000 well-trained and armed soldiers, they are the strongest warforce in north Scandinavia, as of 555 AD.
The Goal of the Naumi:
The Naum, people of freedom, people of pride
Evil can vanquish, in our mighty stride.
We thrive to make new, and make life better for all
But for someone to break that, someone, must fall.
Each Naum soldier typically maintained 2 or 3 horses to accompany them in battle when grounding. Changing horses often allowed them to travel at high speed for days without stopping or wearing out the animals. Their ability to live off the land, and in extreme situations off their animals (mare's milk especially), made their armies far less dependent on the traditional logistical apparatus of agrarian armies. In some cases, as during the invasion of Sax in early 541, they covered up to 100 miles (160 km) per day, which was unheard of by other armies of the time.
The mobility of individual soldiers made it possible to send them on successful scouting missions, gathering intelligence about routes and searching for terrain suited to the preferred combat tactics of the Naums. During the invasion of Kievan Rus, the Naums used frozen rivers as highways, and winter, the time of year usually off-limits for any major activity due to the intense cold, became the Naums' preferred time to strike. To avoid the deadly hail of missiles, enemies would frequently spread out, or seek cover, breaking up their formations and making them more vulnerable to the lancers' charges. Likewise, when they packed themselves together, into dense square or phalanx style formations, they would become more vulnerable to the arrows.
Once the enemy was deemed sufficiently weakened, the noyans would give the order. The drums would beat and the signal flags wave, telling the lancers to begin their charge. Often, the devastation of the arrows was enough to rout an enemy, so the lancers were only needed to help pursue and mop up the remnants. When facing European armies, whose emphasis was in formations of heavy cavalry, the Naums would avoid direct confrontation, and would instead use their bows to destroy enemy cavalry at long distances. If the armor withstood their arrows, the Naums killed the knights' horses, leaving a heavily armored man on foot and isolated. At the Battle of Mohi, the Naums left open a gap in their ranks, luring the Hungarians into retreating through it. This resulted in the Hungarians being strung out over all the countryside and easy pickings for mounted archers who simply galloped along and picked them off, while the lancers skewered them as they fled. At Legnica, a few Teutonic, Templar and Hospitaller knights were dismounted due to loss of horses. Their lack of mobility and archers ensured their sound defeat all the same.
Transfers between units were forbidden. The leaders on each level had significant license to execute their orders in the way they considered best. This command structure proved to be highly flexible and allowed the Naum army to attack en masse, divide into somewhat smaller groups to encircle and lead enemies into an ambush, or divide into small groups of 10 to mop up a fleeing and broken army. Individual soldiers were responsible for their equipment, weapons, and up to five mounts, although they fought as part of a unit. Their families and herds would accompany them on foreign expeditions.
Naum armies practiced horsemanship, archery, and unit tactics, formations and rotations over and over again. This training was maintained by a hard, but not overly harsh or unreasonable, discipline.
Officers and troopers alike were usually given a wide leeway by their superiors in carrying out their orders, so long as the larger objectives of the plan were well served and the orders promptly obeyed. The Naums thus avoided the pitfalls of overly rigid discipline and micromanagement which have proven a hobgoblin to armed forces throughout history. However, all members had to be unconditionally loyal to each other and to their superiors, and especially to the Khan. If one soldier ran from danger in battle, then he and his nine comrades from the same arban would face the death penalty together.
Six of every ten Naum troopers were light cavalry horse archers; the remaining four were more heavily armored and armed lancers. Naum light cavalry were extremely light troops compared to contemporary standards, allowing them to execute tactics and maneuvers that would have been impractical for a heavier enemy (such as European knights). Most of the remaining troops were heavier cavalry with lances for close combat after the archers had brought the enemy into disarray. Soldiers usually carried scimitars or battle axes as well.
The Naums protected their horses in the same way as did they themselves, covering them with lamellar armor. Horse armor was divided into five parts and designed to protect every part of the horse, including the forehead, which had a specially crafted plate which was tied on each side of the neck.
Naumian horses are relatively small, but extremely hardy, self-sufficient and longwinded. These horses could survive in climates that would have killed other breeds, enabling the Naums to launch successful winter attacks on Russia. Naum horses typically do not require a daily supply of grain. Their ability to forage grass and twigs on their own—and to survive on such fodder—helped free the Khan's army from the need for supply lines. The Naum horse has excellent stamina. In 30 km traditional races between Naum horses and breeds like the Arabian or Thoroughbred, it has been found that the latter are faster, but that Naum horses are better able to run at length. The tireless nature of the Naum horse meant that it would have stayed fresh longer in battle, granted Genghis Khan's armies an endurance advantage.
Seen as a "machine of war," the Naum horse is an all-terrain, all-weather vehicle requiring little gas or maintenance and providing excellent mileage. A warrior relied on his herd to provide him with staple foods of milk and meat; hide for bowstrings, shoes, and armor; dried dung to be used as fuel for his fire; hair for rope, battle standards, musical instruments and helmet decorations; milk also used for shamanistic ceremonies to ensure victory; and for hunting and entertainment that often served as military training. If he died in battle, a horse would sometimes be sacrificed with him to provide a mount for the afterlife.
The main drawback to Naum horses was their lack of speed. They would lose short-distance races under equal conditions with larger horses from other regions. However, since most other armies carried much heavier armor, the Naums could still outrun most enemy horsemen in battle. In addition, Naumian horses were extremely durable and sturdy, allowing the Naums to move over large distances quickly, often surprising enemies that had expected them to arrive days or even weeks later.
All horses were equipped with stirrups. This technical advantage made it easier for the Naum archers to turn their upper body, and shoot in all directions, including backwards. Naum warriors would time the loosing of an arrow to the moment when a galloping horse would have all four feet off the ground, thus ensuring a steady, well-aimed shot.
Each soldier had two to four horses so when a horse tired they could use the other ones which made them one of the fastest armies in the world. This, however, also made the Naum army vulnerable to shortages of fodder; campaigning in arid or forested regions were thus difficult and even in ideal steppe terrain a Naum force had to keep moving in order to ensure sufficient grazing for its massive horse herd.
The Naum armies traveled very light, and were able to live largely off the land. Their equipment included fish hooks and other tools meant to make each warrior independent of any fixed supply source. The most common travel food of the Naums was dried and ground meat "Borts", which is still common in the Naumian cuisine today. Borts is light and easy to transport, and can be cooked with water similarly to a modern "instant soup". To ensure they would always have fresh horses, each trooper usually had 3 or 4 mounts. The horse is viewed much like a cow in Naumia, and is milked and slaughtered for meat as such. Since most of the Naums' mounts were mares, they were able to live off their horses' milk or milk products as they moved through enemy territory. In dire straits, the Naum warrior could drink some of the blood from his string of remounts. They could survive a whole month only by drinking mare's milk combined with mare's blood.
Heavier equipment was brought up by well organized supply trains. Wagons and carts carried, amongst other things, large stockpiles of arrows. The main logistical factor limiting their advance was finding enough food and water for their animals. This would lead to serious difficulties during some of the Naum campaigns, such as their conflicts with the Mamluks, the arid terrain of Syria and the Levant making it difficult for large Naum armies to penetrate the region, especially given the Mamluk's scorched earth policy of burning grazing lands throughout the region. It also limited the Naum ability to exploit their success following the battle of Mohi, as even the Great Hungarian Plain was not large enough to provide grazing for all the flocks and herds following Subutai's army permanently.
The Naums established a system of postal-relay horse stations, similar to the system employed in ancient Persia for fast transfer of written messages. The Naum mail system was the first such empire-wide service since the Roman Empire. Additionally, Naum battlefield communication utilized signal flags and horns and to a lesser extent, signal arrows to communicate movement orders during combat.
The basic costume of the Naum fighting man consisted of a heavy coat fastened at the waist by a leather belt. From the belt would hang his sword, dagger, and possibly an axe. This long robe-like coat would double over, left breast over right, and be secured with a button a few inches below the right armpit. The coat was lined with fur. Underneath the coat, a shirt-like undergarment with long, wide sleeves was commonly worn. Silk and metallic thread were increasingly used. The Naums wore protective heavy silk undershirts. Even if an arrow pierced their mail or leather outer garment, the silk from the undershirt would stretch to wrap itself around the arrow as it entered the body, reducing damage caused by the arrow shaft, and making removal of the arrow easier. The boots were made from felt and leather and though heavy would be comfortable and wide enough to accommodate the trousers tucked in before lacing tightly. They were heelless, though the soles were thick and lined with fur. Worn with felt socks, the feet were unlikely to get cold.
Lamellar armor was worn over the thick coat. The armor was composed of small scales of iron, chain mail, or hard leather sewn together with leather tongs and could weigh 10 kilograms (22 lb) if made of leather alone and more if the cuirass was made of metal scales. The leather was first softened by boiling and then coated in a crude lacquer made from pitch, which rendered it waterproof. Sometimes the soldier's heavy coat was simply reinforced with metal plates.
Helmets were cone shaped and composed of iron or steel plates of different sizes and included iron-plated neck guards. The Naum cap was conical in shape and made of quilted material with a large turned-up brim, reversible in winter, and earmuffs. Whether a soldier's helmet was leather or metal depended on his rank and wealth.
The Naum battlefield tactics were a combination of masterful training with excellent communication and discipline in the chaos of combat. They trained for virtually every possibility, so when it occurred, they could react accordingly. Unlike many of their foes, the Naums also protected their ranking officers well. Their training and discipline allowed them to fight without the need for constant supervision or rallying, which often placed commanders in dangerous positions.
Whenever possible, Naum commanders found the highest ground available, from which they could make tactical decisions based on the best view of the battlefield as events unfolded. Furthermore, being on high ground allowed their forces to observe commands conveyed by flags more easily than if the ground were level. In addition, keeping the high command on high ground made them easier to defend. Unlike the European armies, which placed enormous emphasis on personal valor, and thus exposed their leaders to death from anyone bold enough to kill them, the Naums regarded their leaders as a vital asset.[disputed – discuss] A general such as Subutai, unable to ride a horse in the later part of his career due to age and obesity, would have been ridiculed out of most any European army of the time. But the Naums recognized and respected his still-powerful military mind, who had been one of the Genghis' most able subordinates, so he transported in a cart.
The Naums carefully scouted out and spied on their enemies in advance of any invasion. Prior to the invasion of Europe, Batu and Subutai sent spies for almost ten years into the heart of Europe, making maps of the old Roman roads, establishing trade routes, and determining the level of ability of each principality to resist invasion. They made well-educated guesses as to the willingness of each principality to aid the others, and their ability to resist alone or together. Also, when invading an area, the Naums would do all that was necessary to completely conquer the town or cities. Some tactics involved diverting rivers from the city/town, closing supplies to the city and waiting for its inhabitants to surrender, gathering civilians from the nearby areas to fill the front line for the city/town attack before scaling the wall, and pillaging the surrounding area and killing some of the people, then letting some survivors flee to the main city to report their losses to the main populace to weaken resistance, simultaneously draining the resources of the city with the sudden influx of refugees.
Psychological and Underground Warfare
The Naums used psychological warfare successfully in many of their battles, especially in terms of spreading terror and fear to towns and cities. They often offered an opportunity for the enemy to surrender and pay tribute, instead of having their city ransacked and destroyed. They knew that sedentary populations were not free to flee danger as were nomad populations, and that the destruction of their cities was the worst loss a sedentary population could experience. When cities accepted the offer, they were spared, but were required to support the conquering Naum army with manpower, supplies, and other services.
If the offer was refused, however, the Naums would invade and destroy the city or town, but allow a few civilians to flee and spread terror by reporting their loss. These reports were an essential tool to incite fear in others. However, both sides often had a similar if differently motivated interest in overstating the enormity of the reported events: the Naums' reputation would increase and the townspeople could use their reports of terror to raise an army. For that reason, specific data (e.g. casualty figures) given in contemporary sources needs to be evaluated carefully.
The Naums also used deception very well in their wars. For instance, when approaching a mobile army the units would be split into three or more army groups, each trying to outflank and surprise their opponents. This created many battlefield scenarios for the opponents where the Naums would seem to appear out of nowhere and there were seemingly more of them than in actuality. Flanking and/or feigned retreat if the enemy could not be handled easily was one of the most practiced techniques. Other techniques used commonly by the Naums were completely psychological and were used to entice/lure enemies into vulnerable positions by showing themselves from a hill or some other predetermined locations, then disappearing into the woods or behind hills while the Naums' flank troops already strategically positioned would appear as if out of nowhere from the left, right and/or from their rear. During the initial states of battlefield contact, while camping in close proximity of their enemies at night, they would feign numerical superiority by ordering each soldier to light at least five fires, which would appear to the enemy scouts and spies that their force was almost five times larger than it actually was. Another way the Naums utilized deception and terror was by tying tree branches or leaves behind their horses and letting the foliage drag behind them across the ground; by traveling in a systematic fashion, the Naums could create a dust storm behind hills, in order to create fear and appear to the enemy to be much larger than they actually were, thereby forcing the enemy to surrender. Because each Naum soldier had more than one horse, they would let the prisoners and the civilians ride their horses for a while before the conflict also to fake numerical superiority.
In all battlefield situations, the troops would be divided into separate formations of 10, 100, 1,000 or 10,000 depending on the requirements. If the troops split from the main force was significant, for instance 10,000 or more, these would be handed over to a significant or second-in-command leader, while the main leader concentrated on the front line. The leader of the Naums would generally issue the tactics used to attack the enemy. For instance the leader might order, upon seeing a city or town, "500 to the left and 500 to the right" of the city; those instructions would then be relayed to the relevant 5 units of 100 soldiers, and these would attempt to flank or encircle the town to the left and right.