Xracer

Discussion in 'General Military Arms & History Forum' started by Guest, Mar 4, 2003.

  1. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Xracer
    Moderator
    Posts: 372
    (6/9/01 9:34:07 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del All The Greatest General of all time!
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Who? Alexander the Great? Julius Caesar? Hannibal? Temujin? Geronimo? Rommel?

    Pick your own.........and why?

    And now I shall retire to the sidelines and watch the fur fly!!!

    Kdubya
    Moderator
    Posts: 450
    (6/9/01 12:33:52 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: The Greatest General of all time!
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Sir Bernard Law Montgomery!!!

    (That oughta really get the fur flying!!!)
    Keep off the Ridgeline!!

    Xracer
    Moderator
    Posts: 377
    (6/9/01 4:35:37 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: The Greatest General of all time!
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Geez, KW....just what the world needs...ONE MORE wiseass!

    TYRVR
    Moderator
    Posts: 183
    (6/9/01 4:40:29 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: The Greatest General of all time!
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    General Mills????
    If Heaven ain't got A loading bench.....I'm going to Hell,

    obelix2
    Member
    Posts: 213
    (6/9/01 5:42:02 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del serious fur
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Napoleon Buonaparte.

    Zigzag2
    Senior Chief Moderator Staff
    Posts: 663
    (6/9/01 6:23:54 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del
    ezSupporter
    Re: The Greatest General of all time!
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Hmmmmmmmmmmm.... General Electric!

    polishshooter
    Senior Chief Moderator Staff
    Posts: 770
    (6/9/01 8:58:16 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: The Greatest General of all time!
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    I dunno, every time I pick one, I find out he was a jerk...

    Actually, there's fighting generals, and strategic generals.

    If you leave out the fact he lost, and badly at JUST ABOUT every battle he led, Old General Washington has to rate as one of the best strategically.

    All he REALLY had to do is keep the Army intact, win enough to keep morale and enlistments up, until the British beat themselves. He succeeded...even though it took 8 years.

    Along those same lines, you have to say the same for Giap, or maybe even Mao Tse Tung.

    Eisenhower rates high with that criteria too...along with Mannerheim, Gustavus Adolphus, WInfield Scott in his prime...who am I missing...

    As far as a battlefield General, Zhukov, Budensky, Grant, Patton, Ridgeway, Dayan, Hodges(?), Sherman, Thomas, Bragg, Sobieski, Attila, ...crap. I could go on and on...


    That's a real tough question. Some are "One Hit Wonders," some were blessed with being at the right place with the right army at the right time, some REALLY great ones were not, and lost, so we'll never know...And some of the best "generals" were colonels...Francis Marion for example...

    Usually you have to go with an "average." The longer a General fought in command, the better chance he would screw up and give us a chance to second guess him...




    17th FA Bn
    Member
    Posts: 6
    (6/11/01 6:58:52 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: The Greatest General of all time!
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Polishshooter you have a very good point that the longer a General commands the more chances he has to screw up.
    MacArthur was said to have a very low casualty rate through out his Pacific campaigns, but in Korea it was a different story. To paraphrase " Chinese, what Chinese. Even if they are here they can't fight."

    17th FA Bn
    Member
    Posts: 7
    (6/11/01 7:04:12 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: The Greatest General of all time!
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    General Schwartzkopf (not sure on spelling) had one shot at command as a General. He lost less of his own troops while inflicting losses on the Iraqis of biblical proportions, and conquered huge amounts of teritory. He may have been a one hit wonder, but what a hit.

    TYRVR
    Moderator
    Posts: 185
    (6/11/01 7:34:14 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: The Greatest General of all time!
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    I don't have the ability it travel in time, so I can only give observations personally made, Generals sit and strain over plans, and pass these plans down the chain of Command where they are revised and altered to fit resources and terrain, and weather and any number of variables, the attack begins, and if the Generals forces are Victorious, He is declared A military marvel! .....if not Victorious, it was because His plans were not followed to the letter, Basically with Generals, it is "Heads I win, Tails I win" situation, and the larger the Ego, the more Stars on the Shoulder,
    I guess You could call this A "General" observation,
    If Heaven ain't got A loading bench.....I'm going to Hell,

    polishshooter
    Senior Chief Moderator Staff
    Posts: 785
    (6/11/01 9:18:21 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: The Greatest General of all time!
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    I thought Swartzkopf was good too, during and right after the war.

    Now that the REAL histories are being written, not just the Press stories, he is more and more looking like an out of touch with reality egotist.

    Read the story of the Armored Corps Commander who commanded the thrust through the desert by Tom Clancy, (who by the way I think is a better non-fictional history writer than novelist!) and you begin to see Swartzkopf as more of a political press hound than a real General...

    And it was his (incorrect) advice to Powell and Bush that got the War ended early before the Republican Guard was even actually engaged, against the advice of his own intelligence AND his commanders in the field. THAT may have been what actually led to Hussein staying in power. The commanders in the field had them right where they wanted them and wanted 24 hours more to hit them. Swartzkopf disagreed, as most Generals do who stay away from the fighting far to the rear and believe their own press releases, and even lied to Powell as to where the US Army farthest advance was. He even proposed to Bush and Powell the site of the "Armistice Talks" without bothering to find out we hadn't occupied it yet. A Task Force had to be sent AFTER the cease fire to take it, IN VIOLATION of our own cease fire rules just so He wouldn't "look bad."

    Actually, it's starting to look like the war ended just in time to save Swartzkopfs reputation...

    Remember, MacArthur and Bradley were heroes in their day, too...but history knows different.

    17th FA Bn
    Member
    Posts: 6
    (6/13/01 9:53:33 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: The Greatest General of all time!
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Polishshooter you bring up another good point about history in general, one source may paint a person as the second coming, another make them look like the devil himself. I have read nothing negative about General Schartzkopf. Was he that good or did he have a great press agent?

    polishshooter
    Senior Chief Moderator Staff
    Posts: 807
    (6/14/01 11:20:30 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: The Greatest General of all time!
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    I'll get the book by Clancy out of the library again, it was about the armored corp that made the run through Iraq and cut through all the Iraqui Regular Army stuff until it got behind the guards. I wish I could remember stuff like Obelix, I forget the Generals name...

    It was there I first read negative stuff about Norman...and since I've heard more.

    Yeah, NOBODY is perfect, it depends on whether the author/historian has an axe to grind sometimes.

    But things generally sort themselves out, and as a whole, some guys are good, some are bad, and some are enigmas, like MacArthur and Montgomery. Flashes of brilliance coupled with egos and childish tantrums and sometimes downright criminal behavior.

    I hate to sound stupid, but generally the "good" generals are the ones who "won" the most. I'm not being facetious, either. This really IS a profound statement if you think about it.

    the real fredneck
    Member
    Posts: 64
    (6/26/01 3:02:32 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: The Greatest General of all time!
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    I've been watching this thread since it started and at the risk of offending the Vietnam vets here you have to admit that Giap was pretty damn good, to lose every major engagement but still win the war and be considered a national hero by his countrymen

    polishshooter
    Senior Chief Moderator Staff
    Posts: 925
    (6/27/01 12:53:10 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: The Greatest General of all time!
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Yeah, Fred, I respect Giap for his strategic sense and the way he fought the greatest power on earth to a standstill, but he was ONE slimey Machiavellian bastard when he convinced the VC to bear the brunt of Tet '68. If they won all over the south, they'd be too bloodied to consolidate the gains and the NVA would HAVE to step in when it was over, and if they lost, so much the better. They had been fighting the Japs, the French, the Arvin, the US, and there was no reason to think they wouldn't fight the NVA if they decided their rule was too harsh.

    The VC were eliminated as a fighting force after Tet, we kicked the crap out of them, killed off most, and destroyed most of the cadres, BIG American Victory but you'd never know it from the press and protesters, everyone thinks WE lost Tet, and Giap claimed it as a victory. He just eliminated any potential political enemies by having the US kill them all, and the survivors worship him for it. Go figure.

    The only thing that marred his career was Khe Sanh, he thought he had another easy Dien Bien Phu, establish the NVA as a "First Rate" Army in the world by obliterating a major US base, even committed tanks for the first time, but he never counted on the USMC and US Air Support before...REALLY bloodied his nose there!

    He was one general that had no problem dealing with both roles, military and political, to achieve his goals.

    44rugerfan
    Member
    Posts: 19
    (6/27/01 4:08:23 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del
    ezSupporter
    Re: The Greatest General of all time!
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Has got to be Alexander the Great. At a time when ten miles a day for an army was unheard of, he conquered everything within 500 miles of his homeland. At one point his men had been away from home for ten years, and they began grumbling and talking about overthrowing Alexander. Alexander merely came out of his tent, spread his arms and said, "My friends, I am Alexander." The army fell to it's knees and followed him around for another ten years. His genuis was not only beating people, but ruling them after they were beaten. Rarely did he have to send an army out to quash an uprising. Once again this is made fantastic when one considers the distance involved.
    Hunt. Kill. Repeat.

    polishshooter
    Senior Chief Moderator Staff
    Posts: 931
    (6/27/01 8:16:25 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: The Greatest General of all time!
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Yeah, if your criteria is conqueror, I'll give you Alexander.

    Interesting the "10 miles/day" observation.

    Does anybody know what Army/General STILL holds the greatest sustained rate of advance per day record?

    The answer will surprise you. And no, it's not Patton...or Rommel.

    the real fredneck
    Member
    Posts: 67
    (6/27/01 8:29:27 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: The Greatest General of all time!
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    polishshooter
    was it Caesar's Legions in the conquest of Gaul?

    polishshooter
    Senior Chief Moderator Staff
    Posts: 932
    (6/27/01 8:54:38 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: The Greatest General of all time!
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    No, but you're thinking.

    Think horseys.

    The neat thing is everybody automatically thinks tanks and trucks, but that only allows individual units to advance hundreds of miles a day, but the logistic train is so darn big, with so much more support needed, that the "sustained rate of advance" of a whole motorized modern army on the battlefield is about what it was when Caesar was marching on foot...

    cointoss 2
    Member
    Posts: 11
    (6/27/01 9:18:37 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del
    ezSupporter
    Re: The Greatest General of all time!
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Genghis Khan, and I am sure the spelling is wrong, he impressed me as maybe not a general per se', but think about somone on the move and cutting the vein of a horse for nourishment to continue an advance.
    cointoss2

    polishshooter
    Senior Chief Moderator Staff
    Posts: 935
    (6/27/01 11:25:06 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: The Greatest General of all time!
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Bingo, matched by Attila the Hun, and just about any other "horde" from the Steppes. About 25 miles/day, move the WHOLE army and be prepared to FIGHT at the end as a WHOLE army.

    Yeah they were Generals alright, and just MAYBE were the originators of modern mobile "Blitzkrieg" tactics. The horse, and the short composite bow revolutionized warfare probably more than any other thing in history, including Gunpowder. They would not recognise a tank, but they would know how to use it.

    Before you had shock and mass, but now you had firepower and maneuver. Those 4 factors are still all there is to warfare. Everything else supports them, or enhances them.

    44rugerfan
    Member
    Posts: 21
    (6/28/01 3:21:38 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del
    ezSupporter
    Re: The Greatest General of all time!
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Neat, I didn't know that. Khan's hordes only rode mares, so that the men could sustain themselves with the milk. Anybody ever tried horse milk?
    Hunt. Kill. Repeat.

    kdubaz
    Moderator
    Posts: 90
    (6/28/01 11:28:02 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: The Greatest General of all time!
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Lin Piao -

    The Chinese general that kicked our asses out of North Korea. Brought over 400,000 troops across the Yalu River and hid from UN observation in the hills of NK until ready to ambush 8th Army and IX Corps. Couldn't get his heavy weapons up into the mountains with his troops, which marched only at night and covered almost 15 miles a night - IN MOUNTAINS! Knew where every UN unit, down to company level was located and positioned his armies accordingly, all for a coordinated attack, and without benefit of radios or air observation. Went on the offensive with light weapons; rifle, mortar, machine gun - without benefit of air cover or artillery. Troops carried 4 days supply of food, weapons, ammunition and a mortar round each. His supply trains were almost non-existant due to allied air interdiction.

    To do all this with even a 3 to 1 soldier ratio and push the UN troops back across the 38th Parallel down to the 37th with frozen troops, no food, low stocks of light ammunition and poor communications is a feat to be admired. Properly led, the asian soldier is a formidible fighting machine. Discipline is of the highest enforcible order and physical strength is awsome.
    Keep below the ridgeline!

    obelix2
    Member
    Posts: 215
    (6/28/01 1:41:40 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del Add Tamurlane
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    and you've got most of them. The greatest general is not necessarily the greatest slaughterer.

    saracansword
    Member
    Posts: 1
    (2/2/02 10:33:40 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del just testing
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    hi

    saracansword
    Member
    Posts: 2
    (2/2/02 10:38:28 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del greatest warrior
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    hi.....

    I believe one would be hannibal(phonecian origin) who marched with his elephants over the snowy alps from north africa and defeated the Romans...

    Along side him i would put Khaled ibn walid...he defeated both the Romans and Persians in great battles...

    In addition.....the saracan warrior known as Saladdin...he took on the knights of Europe ranging from Richard lion heart..the franks..Germans and Normans.....

    cheers,

    rjpatt1
    Member
    Posts: 2
    (2/2/02 11:49:11 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: greatest warrior
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Has to be Robt. E. Lee. He made a hard decision at the beginning of the war. Turned down command of the Union Army. Sided with his own state regardless of his own political views. He then outfoxed and outfought a numerically and much better supplied army for 4 years. His troops loved him, they would have followed him to the gates of hell. Example of this was Pickett's charge at Gettysburg, no chance of success but a gamble none the same. He was also honored by his enemy during his surrender at Appomattox. Is revered to this day by enemy and friend alike, except for the politically correct bunch. All in all these are pretty good credentials.

    WyomingSwede
    Senior Chief Moderator Staff
    Posts: 192
    (2/2/02 11:44:32 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: greatest warrior
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    I would nominate Chief Joseph of the Nez Perce . Run the Us Military ragged and hauled his noncombatants with him. Got caught just short of the Canadian border....if we wouldnt have had the telegraph...they wouldnt have caught him. swede
    Wyoming Swede

    twins
    V.I.P. Member
    Posts: 201
    (2/4/02 12:08:39 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: greatest warrior
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    One thing to remember about Giap AND Washington, they had only to keep the war going to win.

    zombienomore
    Member
    Posts: 8
    (2/16/02 10:01:26 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del Up against the Giant
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Carl Gustaf Emil Mannerheim

    Showed the Russians how to die, en masse, in the Russo-Finnish Winter War of 1939.


    To quote Nikita Khruschev, who was a Stalin crony at the time....

    "1.5 million men were sent to Finland and one million of them were killed. 1000 aircraft, 2300 tanks and armored cars and an enormous amount of other war materials were lost."


    Edited by: zombienomore at: 2/16/02 10:08:22 pm

    polishshooter
    *TFF Senior Staff*
    Posts: 2889
    (2/17/02 8:04:50 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: Up against the Giant
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Wonder why I haven't seen the new posts, Welcome New Guys!

    Sorry, old Marse Robert wouldn't make it in my top ten, MAYBE as a battlefield tactician, but it can be argued that as soon as the confederacy gave in to his demands in order for him to be the top general, the war was lost...

    He had NO concept of strategy...

    When he made the demand that "his" Richmond be the capital, instead of Mobile, which was the original capital, the Confederacy was doomed..if only by the in reality worthless battles that consumed prodigious supplies and men the South could not afford to lose, defending the "Capital," (hat, 50 miles from Washington?) that could have been better used elsewhere...

    All those men and that material tied up in the east, what would they have meant in the WEST, the most important theater, where the war was actually lost for the CSA????

    What would have happened, if the south says, Sorry, Marse Robert, enjoy you're retirement, and after raising all the armies, takes them all south and keeps the CSA smaller, but more easily defended, and makes the Union march thousands of miles across hostile territory to fight, with raiders like Morgan harassing the lines of communications?

    They had PLENTY of fine Generals that could have led them, and better.

    The ONLY way they could have won....

    And Picketts Charge? A result of his STUPIDITY and tiredness, in fact the whole CAMPAIGN in the North was!

    He had no grasp of strategy, was still seeking Napoleons "Decisive Battle," when the Civil War was NOTHING like a Napoleonic campaign!!!

    And his, "We tried the left, we tried the right, all we could do is try the middle" sorry excuse for why he ORDERED Pickett's charge shows at least a tired mind, one that was not thinking straight, and the fact he allowed his cavalry to be off doing their own thing when they were that exposed in hostile territory was simply a mistake. The fact Pickett's and Longstreet's men MADE that charge speaks volumes about the valor and discipline of Confederate troops...but ALSO speaks volumes for how stupid Lee actually was for ordering it...he should have been RELIEVED for that stupidity.

    Meade was NOT a superstar by any means, but you didn't have to be to beat Lee at Gettysburg, he was the main reason the Confederates LOST. As much as I despise Burnside, even he could have beat Lee at Gettysburg, Lee was so predictable.

    Lee is more revered for his honor, and loyalty, and because he was beloved by his men. But when you are "revered," nobody sees the shortcomings.

    Of the two, Grant was the better all around General, even when DRUNK...

    He had a grasp of stategy, he knew how to use his strengths, and even when he lost, he found another way to keep plugging and win...

    Lee is considered a "Great General" by the south, mush like Bernard Montgomery is considered a "Great General" by the British, or MacArthur is by SOME Americans...(NOT me ,the treasonous b@stard!)


    We must make war as we must; not as we would like. - Field Marshal Kitchener, 1915

    polishshooter
    *TFF Senior Staff*
    Posts: 2890
    (2/17/02 8:07:47 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: Up against the Giant
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    And saracansword, welcome also. There are alot of generals in the Muslim world who get short shrift in Western Literature...

    Maybe it was the Golden Cord traditionally worn around their necks when they went on campaign, to be used to hang themselves with if they lost, that western historians have trouble talking about....
    We must make war as we must; not as we would like. - Field Marshal Kitchener, 1915

    rjpatt1
    Member
    Posts: 4
    (2/17/02 10:52:57 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del Lee
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    You may be right on some points but.
    1) The south would never have won but for 1 chance
    when Beauregard, yes Beauregard, won the 1st battle at Bull Run he could have captured Washington 50 mi from Rishmond aand approx 25 mi from the fight.
    2) Lee's role as CNC of the Confederate armies is over stated. He commanded 1 of 3 distinct armies. I never understood why they considered Lee CNC.
    3) Petersburg, Fredericksburg, The Wilderness. He was outnumbered easily 3-1 if not more and he managed to pull off most of his fights.
    4) As for Pickett's charge it is arguable that he did not give the order. Lee suffered from heart disease and by some accounts was not even present at that point in the battle but in his tent suffering from angina.
    5) If the Capitol had been at Mobile the war would have ended in 1862. That was the year New Orleans fell, a much more defendable area.
    6) Given the resources of the Union Lee would have won easily. The Union expended vast resources of men and material in what could be called human wave assaults.
    Every General has his faults. It is easy to second guess the loser. The winner writes the history books.

    obelix2
    V.I.P. Member
    Posts: 355
    (3/17/02 3:53:07 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del for Polish
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    I can't avoid a Gettysburg question. However, the only question to my mind here, is why the ANV wasn't destroyed. Well, I know the answer, actually. Meade had sent his VI corps -- his only viable reserve -- in the wrong direction, and when it returned, used it piecemeal where it wasn't needed.

    This is not to blame Meade, who didn't even know he commanded the Army of the Potomac until three days before the battle.

    It is to blame those responsible (Lincoln, Stanton, Halleck) for allowing a major number of enlistments to expire weeks before the battle, for refusing to release garrison troops until Hooker was gone, and for changing generals in mid-campaign to anyone other than McClellan.

    striderteen
    Member
    Posts: 5
    (4/17/02 12:02:23 am)
    Reply | Edit | Del Guderian
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Well, if you don't count Grand Admiral Thrawn because he's fictional, I'd have to say Generaloberst Heinz Guderian, the father of modern tank warfare.

    He was the first person to realize a tank could be far, far more than just a mobile pillbox, and his ideas on combined ground-air MOBILE warfare are still used today.



    Gunther WZ
    Member
    Posts: 2
    (4/20/02 11:41:49 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del Rommel
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Of course, Rommel.