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The Top 100 Generals of History

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TheRedBaron View Drop Down
Housecarl
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TheRedBaron Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 Jul 2009 at 12:50
Originally posted by ResoundingEagle ResoundingEagle wrote:

Originally posted by Etnad Etnad wrote:

The succes in North Africa is all on Rommel's account! His only problem was that he had to respond to Hitler - and thereby the logistics.



Well said - logistics were a major issue for the Germans on all fronts, but, reporting to Hitler, I would argue, is worst of all. =P What a good waste of a wondrous man like Rommel. (That's just my opinion though)

 
Not really.
 
As Hitlers pet-favourite Rommel had freedom of action in North Africa and was allowed far more freedom of action than any other German commander of the period, indeed even being able to get his superiors over-ruled time and again by Hitler when they suggested courses of action different to Rommels plans.
 
it could be argued that the problem, and the cause of the defeat in North Africa was Rommels own egotism and unwillingness to follow a grander strategy for Southern Europe.
 
Hitlers mistake was to give Rommel preference and treat him as a favoured son. Luckily this favouritism had dropped by Normandy and Rommels request for the Panzers to deploy behind the beaches was not accepted... Where they would have been in range of naval gunfire.
 
As for him being a 'wondrous' man... Well no thanks. He was a devoted follower of Hitler until it no longer suited him. He has benefitted for too long from an image of something he is not due to the desire for the Allies to portray a 'good' German General in the post-war Cold-War climate... Even better that the one they choose was also dead.
 
As I said, a good divisional commander, out of his depth a little when given an army...
 
If he was so wondrous, then why didnt he win in North Africa?
 
He also wasnt liked by his subordinates and few had many good things to say of him. Kreibel was very critical of his ability to grasp even the most basic requirements for effective logistics supply, Streich of 5th light Division loathed Rommel and Kircheim who was also very critical of Rommel commented that "thanks to propaganda, first by Goebbels, then by Montgomery, and finally, after he was poisoned, by all former enemy powers, he has become a symbol of the best military traditions. ...Any public criticism of this legendary personality would damage the esteem in which the German soldier is held"... Thus it suited the post-war enviroment to portray Rommel in this regard. Now the propaganda is regarded as fact and accepted as such.
 
Its really time a few 'serious' historians began to question the role played by Rommel in WW2 in a far more critical light.


Edited by TheRedBaron - 21 Jul 2009 at 12:57
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Cryptic View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Cryptic Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 Jul 2009 at 16:31
Originally posted by ResoundingEagle ResoundingEagle wrote:

  but it is true Rokossovsky was never given much attention, even, arguably, as much as he deserved in his own country.
That is because Rokosssovsky had serious background issues. Unlike Zhukov's peasant origins, Rokossovsky was not only of aristocratic background, but of Polish origins as well.  Prior to being given senior command at the Front, Rokossovsky was imprisoned and tortured by the NKVD.
Originally posted by rider rider wrote:

I would argue that due to the Germans overextending their forces and their logistical possibilities, no Soviet commander was in any 'actual' difficulty to force the Germans into a retreat after some time. Therefore, they are no 'military geniuses'.
Even with being over extended, the Germans had a huge amount of strategic and operational momentum at Leningrad. This was true even at Moscow. Stopping them took real skill and talent.
Originally posted by Etnad Etnad wrote:

Since many of the soviet commanders where trained by the german commanders.. I would hardly place a soviet general instead of a german general on the list.
THe Soviets deserve far more credit than that. Zhukov, Koniev, Vatutin, and Rokossovsky were the equivelant of any German generals. Soviet commanders at the  Brigade, Divisional and Corps level, however, were not usually equal to the Germans. This led to many situations where lower level Soviet units lacked the skills to implement plans of talented Soviet senior commanders.
 


Edited by Cryptic - 21 Jul 2009 at 17:10
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote rider Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 Jul 2009 at 19:25
The Soviets lost during the most of the war, only in the end did they really show any superiority. In any case, it wouldn't be fair to say that Soviets have to move upwards and then disregard the position Mannerheim is in right now. Mannerheim made for a brilliant fight against the USSR and did not lose; meaning that he should be above any ranking USSR commander (since if they had had any ideas, the ideas would have been implemented, with no regard to the actual theatre of war they were stationed in).
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ResoundingEagle Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 Jul 2009 at 19:45
*sigh* I'm not arguing with people who refuse to see any truth and instead what they wish to believe. =P It's pointless, and a waste of my time and resources. =P I'm a historian, not a 'youtube commenter' like some of you seem to be.  It would help if some of you would actually read the replies before making your own.

Rider - get offline and read a history book. =P You'll look far less ridiculous when you post.

Red Baron - Your neglecting the full criteria of this list. Plus, your only talking about military victories, and its obvious you have little knowledge into Rommel's life. Your making one sided statements that do little to prove or infer anything. He was the ONLY Nazi commander whom was known to break Hitler's rules on a number of occassions, especially concerning Jews and more nasty politics, which he rather openly (and discreetly as well) disagreed with at times, and not be executed or severaly punished.

Nazis are Nazis, but for a Nazi, Rommel was the best of the lot. He was also one of the only ones to directly defy the Furher and get a strange leeway most were never afforded. I despise the Nazis far more than most of you I'm sure, but I do give credit where its due.

Given the criteria, Rommel is a more than worthy mention for this list. And given deep study, it will show.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote rider Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 Jul 2009 at 21:06
Do not assume to have any indication of the level of my erudition thanks to a simple-mindedly logical post (which doesn't take into account the non-military conditions of the USSR, but which is true in basic logics). Mannerheim is one of the finest tacticians that has ever roamed the North-Eastern Europe. The fact that he managed to hold the Soviets at bay in the Winter War and the Continuation War is proof enough that Mannerheim, given the resources to equal the USSR could have won the wars. The fact that Finland was the lesser party in all numbers and yet cost the Soviets more casualties than the ratio is compared to parties such as the German realm, reveals the strategical ingenuity of the Finnish people under the command of Mannerheim.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Cryptic Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 Jul 2009 at 22:22
Originally posted by rider rider wrote:

The Soviets lost during the most of the war, only in the end did they really show any superiority. In any case, it wouldn't be fair to say that Soviets have to move upwards and then disregard the position Mannerheim is in right now.
Yes, Mannerheim is also a great general. Youa re correct, the Soviets were on a learning curve, but they also learned pretty fast how to compete with the Germans at the Strategic level. It was at the Corps level and below that the Soviets could never quite compete.
 
For example
Late 1941: Successful defenses of Moscow and Leningrad
November 1942: Use of envelopement at Stalingrad, Italian army shattered, attempted envelopment of entire German Amry group in Operation Big Uranus.
July 1943: Victory at Kursk (summer, well prepared and rested German opponents)
1944: Reverse Blizkrieg through Ukraine, Kiev liberated
1944...  The victories go on an on.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Praetor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 Jul 2009 at 22:35
Though far from an expert on the Second world war Rider I would strongly disagree with you on the matter of Soviet generalship, yes the Soviets suffered the greatest defeats at the hands of the German army but they also won the most important victories against this same army, the great majority of Germany army at that. Yes the Germans overstretched their supply lines but this conflict could was hardly decided by logistics alone. you could certainly say that "after some time" (ambiguous statement as it is) forcing the Germans into a military retreat required no military genius (though this was no less true on the Western front), It seemed to me however that what required far more skill was stopping then breaking the offensive power of the Wehrmacht Which is exactly what Russia's finest commanders succeeded in doing.

Resounding Eagle please try and be a tad more patient and respectful, Rider is a very long standing member who I can assure you has read plenty of history books if his knowledge of and enthusiasm for the subject of history is anything to go by, however annoying he can sometimes be.

DS Myers I have but a few recommendations to make at this time. Firstly you needn't bother adding Diocletian to the top one hundred generals list, he was competant as a general but by no means something special, as a statesman and politician he was a genius so perhaps he's top leader list material. I again would like to see Eugene and Adolphus dropped significantly, I fail for instance to see why Gustavus Adolphus ranks ahead of the likes of Phillip II who was also a great (perhaps greater?) military reformer and a field commander of considerable talent and talented strategist to boot. I do not insist that Phillip II's position on the list is raised but that Adolphus, whose accomplishments I suspect to be lesser, be moved down. At any rate he certainly shouldn't be ranked higher than Scipio Africanus and Julius Caesar. But I do realise as with my opposition to Napoleon's position that I may be flogging a dead horse on this matter.

btw, though I'm not an expert on the period I believe early modern European generalship to be a rather overrepresented category whose members are also overrated as a whole. I would also like to query the rather high positions accorded to Shapur I and Robert Clive, these men were talented generals but I have my doubts as to whether they deserve positions as high as they have, Clive if I recall is most famed for the battle of Plassey in which though the odds stacked against him numerically were misleading as his force of greatly superior quality was highly aided by the treachery of a large part of the opposing force. As for Shapur his record is a bit too patchy for my liking even considering the quality of his opponents, facing significant defeats at the hands of Rome and Palmyra.

Regards, Praetor.


Edited by Praetor - 21 Jul 2009 at 22:53
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Al Jassas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 Jul 2009 at 23:24
Hello to you all
 
Generally speaking, the performance of most Soviet generals (and for that matter and even to a greater extent American and British commanders) in WWII was at best mediocre. Only a few were exceptional and nearly all used the same old tactics of mass attack and accepting huge losses for minor gains which is in my opinion one of the most important factors in determining how good a general is.
 
No doubt, their performance enhanced alot and they learned from their mistakes and didn't make them again which is important but that doesn't mean that they are "great". From Kursk onward the Russians were never challanged in a way like 42 or 41 and everyone one knows they only began to achieve massive victories afterwards. Also operations like Spring Awakening and Solicetice, which achieved stunning successes when one takes into account the 10:1 in equipment and 5:1 in men superiority of the Russians in both operations, showed many weaknesses in Russian commanders who failed to forsee such attacks.
 
The only Soviet general who I really think he deserve a place in the 100, and he is there, is Vasilievsky because from all other Soviet generals he had the only thing they lacked, consistency. The guy won every tactical and strategic level operation and was the strategist behind some of russia's greatest victories like Stalingrad and Uranus, Dnieper and Prussia and Finally the Manchuria offensive. He is the 2nd greatest general of WWII in my opinion.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TheRedBaron Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 2009 at 10:46
Originally posted by ResoundingEagle ResoundingEagle wrote:



Red Baron - Your neglecting the full criteria of this list. Plus, your only talking about military victories, and its obvious you have little knowledge into Rommel's life. Your making one sided statements that do little to prove or infer anything. He was the ONLY Nazi commander whom was known to break Hitler's rules on a number of occassions, especially concerning Jews and more nasty politics, which he rather openly (and discreetly as well) disagreed with at times, and not be executed or severaly punished.

Nazis are Nazis, but for a Nazi, Rommel was the best of the lot. He was also one of the only ones to directly defy the Furher and get a strange leeway most were never afforded. I despise the Nazis far more than most of you I'm sure, but I do give credit where its due.

Given the criteria, Rommel is a more than worthy mention for this list. And given deep study, it will show.
 
 
You see Im not. Its ok for someone to disagree with you Eagle. You may be right, and in your head Im sure you are, but the whole point of historical debate is to offer opposing views and seek the middle ground.
 
Can I suggest that you try doing some reading too. Your attitude that you are right and others are not, while preaching that its pointless discussing does you no favours... and you are very obviously a knowledgable man with a true passion for history, sadly your comments often give me the feeling that unless someone agrees with you, you dont wish to listen to them.
 
Rommel was an excellent combat tactician. He excelled at small unit (battalion level) tactics and proved to be an exemplary divisional commander shown by his leadership of 7th Panzer in France, despite his moment of panic at the British counter-attack at Arras in 1940 he should what an excellent divisional commander he was by utilising all his available assets - his flak batteries with their 88mm guns - to act as a breaking line for the British armoured advance after his own tanks had proved ineffectual. A lesser commander would have paniced and the situation could have been disasterous, but Rommels quick thinking and accurate idea as to what elements to use and where proved correct and he turned a very serious situation to his advantage - This is Rommel at his best, leading a division and using it as an all arms combat formation.
 
However, when he becomes an Army commander, he conducts it in the same way he leads a division. This is a major flaw for an army commander.
 
Obviously I know nothing about Rommel... How do you know this? Also you call yourself a 'historian', well surely part of that is listening to and debating opposing points of view? Even if you disagree we can only reach a common ground through reasoned debate.
 
Can I politely suggest you read 'Inside the Afrika Korps' by Werner Kreibel? It may help you see a different Rommel from the propagandist version. While no less skilful his lack of logistical knowledge and often lack of prepardness are shown time and time again.
 
Rommal was certainly not the best German commander, he was the most popular and the one with the best image to trawl around the post-war enviroment. You can discredit and overlook the comments of those who served with him if you want, but I think they give a telling insight into the real Rommel.
 
I also see no relation between his selective disregard for some of Hitler's orders and him being a good General. That is irrelevant, by that rationale Kurt Student should make the list for his actions.
 
Next you will tell me that Hans Von Luck really did orders those '88's to fire during Operation Goodwood and that Wittmann did return to Villers-Bocage. Unless of course you swallow all the propaganda people throw out...
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TheRedBaron Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 2009 at 10:58
Originally posted by rider rider wrote:

Do not assume to have any indication of the level of my erudition thanks to a simple-mindedly logical post (which doesn't take into account the non-military conditions of the USSR, but which is true in basic logics). Mannerheim is one of the finest tacticians that has ever roamed the North-Eastern Europe. The fact that he managed to hold the Soviets at bay in the Winter War and the Continuation War is proof enough that Mannerheim, given the resources to equal the USSR could have won the wars. The fact that Finland was the lesser party in all numbers and yet cost the Soviets more casualties than the ratio is compared to parties such as the German realm, reveals the strategical ingenuity of the Finnish people under the command of Mannerheim.
 
While I agree that Mannerheim was a very good defensive commander (with it must be said excellent quality sub-commanders and troops who knew both the terrain and the conditions) it must also be mentioned that the commanders he went up against were dreadful.
 
The Red Army that invaded Finland in December 1939 was ill-equipped (one division that was issued with ski's used them as fire wood before crossing into Finland), poorly led (by political appointees), poorly trained (in many cases the troops had no training at all), utterly misled by the situation they would find in Finland (the Red Army expected the Finnish working classes to rise up and support their invasion) and utterly unprepared for the winter conditions (tank oil that froze, gun lubricant that froze solid).
 
To be fair, although Mannerheim was very good (though he himself admitted he could only hold the Red Army for so long and that defeat was inevitable) the enemy he was up against was utterly dreadful for the first few months of the conflict and the Red Army practically defeated itself with its poor condition and suicidal tactics.
 
The Red Army negated its one advantage, its numbers, with an utterly inept military campaign. Up against Mannerhiem, this operation was turned from a fiasco, into a massacre.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Al Jassas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 2009 at 14:11

Hello to you all

Sorry to disagree with you Red. The Russian army was ill-equpped for a winter war yes but not for war in general. They committed some 6000 tanks, 1 million soldiers and some 3500 airplanes. The Finns had only 32 tanks and 130 planes.
 
Even if they were ill equipped for winter there is simply no comparison between the forces and should have won especially that much of the Easter borders was open and solid frozen. Of course the calibre of the soldiers wasn't the best and had the Siberians of Zhukov been there the war could have been shorter but nonethless, claiming the Russians were ill equipped is not true. The disparity in numbers alone cancells any ill equipments there is.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ResoundingEagle Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 2009 at 17:57
The reason is because I do not agree with the methods some people use to debate - which are highly stagnant. Not so much you, Red Baron, but in general for some.

=/ I would imagine you of all people would likely have read the entire D-Day topic, where multiple times I was highly encouraged and thankful for offering of resources to better round my own. Ive done this in other topics too.  Also, if you trail my posts, the only ones you will find in this strain, is when addressing the usual lot with the posts that do the aforementioned.

My appeals to offer better posts or replies, (in certain cases) goes entirely unchecked, and I don't see why I should be motivated to go back and forth when nothing will happen but my own frustration - and no learning or worthwhile conversation and progression for either party takes place. While its no good reason, and very honestly just an rather coarse excuse, if people are going to toy with me then I will respond in kind. I shouldn't, and I know that. But after a while, it becomes questionable whether or not its worthwhile to offer well composed replies to people, that no matter how well they are offered, do not care for them and only their own press.

I am human too, and at this time perhaps am reaching my limits of patience which requires due attention by myself to correct. I realize my vehemence is a bit exasperating and unnecessary as of late, and make due note of that. Perhaps that explains my position though no matter how valid , or well arguably, invalid, it may certainly be. I suppose I do owe those reading an explanation. I wish I could say something more noble for reasoning,  but that's honestly my problem. (It also highly bothers me too when I know those I'm reciprocating with, are capable of far better)

I do not like people agreeing with me all the time, because I never learn anything. I get highly annoyed though when people contest things, but in the process do not offer anything worthwhile in their statements, and refuse to. Not to say my reactions are any better, but I get discouraged in making them so. It's counterproductive for me to respond in ways I may sometimes do, so I will work to correct that.

Its when replies offer nothing but rebuking without merit - that I am inclined to offer the same. I get tired of offering my best, and getting the the least from people in return, and I'm sure I am not the only one with all the brilliant minds on this site I would like to learn from.

Originally posted by TheRedBaron TheRedBaron wrote:

Originally posted by ResoundingEagle ResoundingEagle wrote:



Red Baron - Your neglecting the full criteria of this list. Plus, your only talking about military victories, and its obvious you have little knowledge into Rommel's life. Your making one sided statements that do little to prove or infer anything. He was the ONLY Nazi commander whom was known to break Hitler's rules on a number of occassions, especially concerning Jews and more nasty politics, which he rather openly (and discreetly as well) disagreed with at times, and not be executed or severaly punished.

Nazis are Nazis, but for a Nazi, Rommel was the best of the lot. He was also one of the only ones to directly defy the Furher and get a strange leeway most were never afforded. I despise the Nazis far more than most of you I'm sure, but I do give credit where its due.

Given the criteria, Rommel is a more than worthy mention for this list. And given deep study, it will show.
 
 
You see Im not. Its ok for someone to disagree with you Eagle. You may be right, and in your head Im sure you are, but the whole point of historical debate is to offer opposing views and seek the middle ground.
 
Can I suggest that you try doing some reading too. Your attitude that you are right and others are not, while preaching that its pointless discussing does you no favours... and you are very obviously a knowledgable man with a true passion for history, sadly your comments often give me the feeling that unless someone agrees with you, you dont wish to listen to them.
 
Rommel was an excellent combat tactician. He excelled at small unit (battalion level) tactics and proved to be an exemplary divisional commander shown by his leadership of 7th Panzer in France, despite his moment of panic at the British counter-attack at Arras in 1940 he should what an excellent divisional commander he was by utilising all his available assets - his flak batteries with their 88mm guns - to act as a breaking line for the British armoured advance after his own tanks had proved ineffectual. A lesser commander would have paniced and the situation could have been disasterous, but Rommels quick thinking and accurate idea as to what elements to use and where proved correct and he turned a very serious situation to his advantage - This is Rommel at his best, leading a division and using it as an all arms combat formation.
 
However, when he becomes an Army commander, he conducts it in the same way he leads a division. This is a major flaw for an army commander.
 
Obviously I know nothing about Rommel... How do you know this? Also you call yourself a 'historian', well surely part of that is listening to and debating opposing points of view? Even if you disagree we can only reach a common ground through reasoned debate.
 
Can I politely suggest you read 'Inside the Afrika Korps' by Werner Kreibel? It may help you see a different Rommel from the propagandist version. While no less skilful his lack of logistical knowledge and often lack of prepardness are shown time and time again.
 
Rommal was certainly not the best German commander, he was the most popular and the one with the best image to trawl around the post-war enviroment. You can discredit and overlook the comments of those who served with him if you want, but I think they give a telling insight into the real Rommel.
 
I also see no relation between his selective disregard for some of Hitler's orders and him being a good General. That is irrelevant, by that rationale Kurt Student should make the list for his actions.
 
Next you will tell me that Hans Von Luck really did orders those '88's to fire during Operation Goodwood and that Wittmann did return to Villers-Bocage. Unless of course you swallow all the propaganda people throw out...
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote hugoestr Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 2009 at 18:24
I propose an AE committee to come up with a criteria on deciding who is the greatest general of all time. For example, those who win offensive battles should be weighed more than those who win defensive ones. And size of troops and quality of weapons should also be taken into consideration.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote rider Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 2009 at 22:27
Originally posted by TheRedBaron TheRedBaron wrote:

the Red Army expected the Finnish working classes to rise up and support their invasion
 
USSR expected that to happen everywhere. If I remember right, the Estonian working class was supposed to join in after the coup d'etat attempt in '24 (failed); so were the working classes in Poland and other countries supposed to greet the USSR coming to them. The revolution had to spread, did it not?
 
However, it would seem to me unrealistic if anyone past the civilian command really believed in this. The military leaders, not counting Stalin here for now, should have had a better grasp of the situation than to expect a 'miracle' victory at every point along the road -- after they had failed in several places, why should they have succeeded in Finland by doing the same old things?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote DSMyers1 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Jul 2009 at 00:52
Originally posted by hugoestr hugoestr wrote:

I propose an AE committee to come up with a criteria on deciding who is the greatest general of all time. For example, those who win offensive battles should be weighed more than those who win defensive ones. And size of troops and quality of weapons should also be taken into consideration.


Well, the criteria is already posted at the top...  It is a subjective exercise, no matter how you cut it.  I think this thread, worked on for 3 years, has done a pretty solid job of hammering a full list of 100 out, not to mention the Number 1 spot.

Of course, this list is always open...
The Top 100 Generals

God is my Judge
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote hugoestr Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Jul 2009 at 02:26
He, he, it just shows you how much I come over here . Do you have a spreadsheet where you score each of these generals to reach the ranking?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Craze_b0i Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Aug 2009 at 02:34
Another possible nomination for consideration: Simon de Montfort of France, leader of the Albigensian Crusade in Languedoc. He welded together a disparate army of opportunists and free-booters. He successfully outfought his enemies on many occasions.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Praetor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Aug 2009 at 08:32
I would like to again reiterate my opposition to Robert Clive's place on the list, exempting Wellington he is the only British Indian general on the list (I think, may have missed someone), what makes him so special amongst all of them? He seems to have had a rather short career and like many British generals to come defeated an enemy Indian force with a vast numerical superiority, aided by very strong internal divisions amongst the enemy (granted they were skillfully exploited), I don't necessarily oppose his inclusion on the list but I do oppose his inclusion in the top 50 much less top 30.

Allenby's inclusion I also have a problem with, yeah he was good but he was facing a very weak opponent and its easy to see some kind of genius in him when you compare him to other World War I commanders, quite honestly there are more than a hundred better than him, a few of which have been knocked off the list.

Now I know there are a few Byzantines and Romans But I feel I should mention John Tzimisces and Quintus Sertorius.

Tzimisces was one of the brilliant general Nicephorus Phocas's (a general that was previusly on the list that I would like to see back on) top lieutenants before the latter assumed the throne, he eventually murdered Nicephorus and assumed the Throne himself, he was highly succesful both in the East against opponents such as the Hamdanids under the able Saif Ad Daula and in the Balkans against the able Sviatoslav Grand prince of Kiev who had in the past greatly expanded his territory by defeating Pechenegs, defeating the Khazars, defeating the Volga Bulgars and conquering the Bulgarians. However after first being defeated at the battle of Arcadiopolis by Bardas Sklerus Sviatoslav was twice decisively defeated by Tzimisces (at Preslav and Dorostolon) and as a result Tzimisces gained possession of Sviatoslav's Bulgarian conquests. Admittedly during Tzimisces lifetime the Byzantine Empire had resurged to become the most formiddable power in Europe but I still believe him to be very much worthy of this list, in my mind presently as Byzantine commanders go I have him as third behind Belisarius and Heraclius though others could most certainly rival him for this position (such as the previusly bumped Nicephorus and Basil II, Constantine V is also worth mentioning).

Quintus Sertorius is one of only two generals (the other being Gaius Julius Caesar) to defeat Pompeius Magnus in battle and Pompey had quite a long and illustrius career as many of us know, including quite a number of successes against other Roman generals. Quintus Sertorius seems to have been the closest thing Rome produced to a master of Guerrila warefare, facing off against such Roman generals as Metellus Pius and Pompey in the Iberian penninsula, both of these generals were capable opponents who combined possessed superior resources to Sertorius who commanded a coalition of fierce Lusitanian tribesmen (as well as other Iberians) and Roman opponents of the current regime in Rome, though this combination could prove formiddable establishing and maintaining his preeminence among such a group in the midst of a protracted and fierce struggle required a leader of considerable charisma and diplomatic skill, qualities clearly possessed by Quintus Sertorius. His rebbellion was eventually ended following his assasination by an ambitous lieutenant. On a side note Sertorius does remind me of the Lusitanian leader Viriathus who seems to have by far been the most succesful of Rome's Iberian opponents scoring a number of victories before Rome felt the need to resort to assasination rather than defeat him in the field.

I would personally place Sulla and Sertorius above Marius while acknowledging that Sulla helped his case and hindered Marius's by writing his own memoirs and would probably rank Rome's emperor generals as follows: Aurelian, Septimius Severus and Constantine though that view is not held all too strongly, I regard them all as being better than Trajan.

Regards, Praetor.

btw, I know I have been vague if you feel you would like me to clarify any of what I have said please say so.


Edited by Praetor - 03 Aug 2009 at 08:46
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Craze_b0i Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Aug 2009 at 10:37

I don't know if this was mentioned before on the old forum, but what about Sparticus? The real-life Sparticus won many victories against the Romans, often with fewer men.

Edit: maybe we could have a sub-list below the top 100 as a record of ones that have been considered for inclusion but didn't quite make the 100 list?

Edited by Craze_b0i - 03 Aug 2009 at 10:40
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Knights Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Aug 2009 at 12:14
Nice posts, people. I'm enjoying reading them, just waiting for enough free time to put forward my strongly held convictions about the list.

Craze_b0i - check out the 3rd and 4th posts of this thread on page 1. There is a 100-200 list, and a waiting list too. Is this what you are looking for?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Craze_b0i Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Aug 2009 at 20:46
Originally posted by Knights Knights wrote:

Nice posts, people. I'm enjoying reading them, just waiting for enough free time to put forward my strongly held convictions about the list.

Craze_b0i - check out the 3rd and 4th posts of this thread on page 1. There is a 100-200 list, and a waiting list too. Is this what you are looking for?
 
Cheers Knights, I didn't see that the 3rd 4th posts had been filled in.
 
lnteresting to see how far 'Cyrus' has fallen from his original ranking. Oh the irony. Big smile
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote drgonzaga Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Aug 2009 at 21:12
I am surprised no one has mentioned one of the more renown figures in military history, General Jubilation T. Cornpone!
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Knights Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Aug 2009 at 23:32
Originally posted by Craze_b0i Craze_b0i wrote:

Originally posted by Knights Knights wrote:

Nice posts, people. I'm enjoying reading them, just waiting for enough free time to put forward my strongly held convictions about the list.

Craze_b0i - check out the 3rd and 4th posts of this thread on page 1. There is a 100-200 list, and a waiting list too. Is this what you are looking for?
 
Cheers Knights, I didn't see that the 3rd 4th posts had been filled in.
 
lnteresting to see how far 'Cyrus' has fallen from his original ranking. Oh the irony. Big smile


LOL



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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Jonathan4290 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Aug 2009 at 22:03

I'd support discussing Quintus Sertorius as guerrilla leaders are relatively unrepresented on this list. DSMyers is probably shaking his head right now thinking of last year's debates over Giap, Mao and others.

Rommel should not be in the top 100. Creveld in Supplying War makes it very clear that the Africa lacked the ports to properly supply any push into Egypt. All he needed to do was some simple calculations to show that Rommel was completely in the wrong to disobey orders and go on the strategic offensive.
 
Rommel was a gifted tactician but was fairly mortal compared to many other German generals. Hans Hube, Hermann Balck, Ferdinand Schorner and others were probably Rommel's equal at a divisional and corps level. To me the North African campaign showed Rommel was not fit for army command because he failed to understand that you can't just move an army wherever you want.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Challenger2 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Aug 2009 at 06:30
Originally posted by Knights Knights wrote:

(I am adamant that Wellington was superior to Marlborough)


Hmm, this might be worth a punt...I'm equally adamant he wasn't. WinkTongue

Please do transfer some of those posts, I'd be interested in seeing on what you base your argument. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote serbia123 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Aug 2009 at 21:02
I think General Zivojin Misic definately deserves a spot on the list (not necessarily the 1-100 but definitely the 101-200 spot).

In the first Balkan War, he decisively defeated the Ottoman at the Battle of Kumanovo,Prilep, and Manastir which forced the Ottomans to entirely abandon all of Vardar Macedonia. In the Second Balkan War, the Battle of Bregalnica sealed the fate of the Bulgarians and the entire war and their offensive was destroyed. In WWI, he oversaw and commanded directly the spectacular defence of Serbia, winning stunning victoies at the Battle of Cer (first allied victory of the war), the Battle of Kolubara, and the Battle of the Drina. He, with a poorly equipped and vastly smaller army managed to decisevely defeat the Austrian offensive. Only when Germany directly intervened and the Bulgarians attacked from Serbia's eastern flank did he withdraw. However, he refused to surrender and led the Serbian Army's spectacular withdrawl through Albania to Corfu and after several months, he led his troops to battle once again on the Macedonian front where his troops withstood attack after attack and eventually defeated the Bulgarians at Dobro Pole (effectively taking them out of the war) and recapturing all of Macedonia, Serbia, and Bosnia.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%C5%BDivojin_Mi%C5%A1i%C4%87


Edited by serbia123 - 16 Aug 2009 at 21:02
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote graceht Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 Sep 2009 at 17:10
Is Genghis Khan really a better general than Alexander the Great? I mean, Genghis Khan lived longer than Alexander did. Who knows what Alexander might have done had he lived longer. In a space of a few years Alexander did more than anyone can imagine. Genghis Khan was terrific, too, but I'd put both he and Alexander the Great on the same level.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote DSMyers1 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Oct 2009 at 23:30
I agree, Graceht... they are very similar.   There was quite a bit of discussion about the two.

Alexander accomplished a lot, but against one unstable power.  Genghis accomplished a bit more, against harder and more varied foes.

Search the archived thread for the discussion, and you'll get 5 pages of replies:
Archived Thread: http://www.allempires.net/topic13436.html


Edited by DSMyers1 - 12 Oct 2009 at 00:44
The Top 100 Generals

God is my Judge
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote stuchiu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 Oct 2009 at 23:12
For Guo Ziyi, I'd rank him somewhere between 100-150, since I don't know anything about his specific tactics, recon, etc.  There are some details about his battles on wiki though (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guo_Ziyi).  The two battles below were from when he defended the Tang dynasty from the Tibetans, the first happening right after the An Shi Rebellion, and the second happening two years after.   It shows how feared he was as a commander, his understanding and manipulation of the Ughyers, and personal bravery.  

Battle of Chang'an:  In 763, one hundred thousand Tibetans invaded China and surrounded the capital city of Chang'an. This was the height of Tibetan power, but it was also the height of Guo's career. He was prepared and sent a small force of cavalry to scout the Tibetans, giving them orders to light fires in random locations where the Tibetans could see them and then immediately retreat. Guo then sent secret messages to Chang'an ordering citizens to strike gongs and shoot off fireworks. The Tibetans were confused by these actions, and they panicked and scattered when rumors spread that it was Guo Ziyi moving against them with a large force. The Tibetans began to desert and the battle was won without losses on either side. Many Chinese military historians considered this to be the best example of Sun Tzu's idea of the cleanest kind of battle, "a war with no loss on either side but simply played out with the desired effect for the victor." There are discrepancies in the number of cavalry troops Guo dispatched; some Chinese texts state that Guo had sent out only thirteen scouts, but a Tibetan text source indicated there had been two hundred.

Battle of Xiyuan:  He won this mostly through his reputation again.  The next two years were peaceful, but the Tibetans attacked again in 765, when the Uyghur Jiedushi Pugu Huai'en sent false messages to the King of Tibet stating that Guo Ziyi had died. The Tibetan king was eager to avenge his earlier defeat, and dispatched a large force to attack Tang China again. Various Uyghur chieftains, also believing that Guo was dead, joined force with the Tibetans. The Tibetan force was recorded as more than thirty thousand (including a few thousand of Uyghurs), almost the entire Tibetan military at the time.
When news of the Tibetans reached Emperor Daizong, he sent Guo Ziyi out with a few thousand men. When Guo was within a day's march from the enemy, he decided to go alone to see the Uyghur chieftains. When Guo arrived at the Uyghur's camp, he did not reveal his identity and appeared to be a messenger who had been sent to tell them that Guo Ziyi was coming to see them. The Uyghur chieftains, many of who had joined the rebel side in the An Shi Rebellion, were surprised and panicked to hear that Guo was alive, deciding that they had to meet with him. Guo laughed at them and asked them why they would want to face Guo Ziyi again after their defeat at his hands during the An Shi Rebllion. The Uyghur chieftains replied they had been told that he was dead, but if they met with him and saw he was alive, they would retreat. Guo, however, insisted that Guo Ziyi did not seek their retreat but instead wanted them to join him against the Tibetans. The Uyghur chieftains, saying they had been deceived by the Tibetans about Guo's death, decided to break the alliance with them. They even claimed that shamans had foretold that a great man would lead them to victory and that they now believed this man must be Guo, and agreed to join forces with the Tang. Guo returned to his camp and ordered a thousand light horsemen to made a quick rush at the Tibetan camp at Xiyuan. When the Tibetans realized the Uyghurs had broken their alliance, they tried to withdraw, but Guo's horsemen arrived and scattered their forces; at the same time, the Uyghurs arrived and prevented the Tibetans' retreat. Over ten thousand Tibetans were killed in battle and another ten thousand were taken as prisoners of war. Guo continued to pursue the Tibetans and freed over four thousand civilians they had taken captive.

When the Tibetan king heard that his force had been defeated, he quickly sent a message to Emperor Daizong seeking a peace, stating that his army had been on a hunting trip and had had no intention of attacking the Tang Empire. Although Daizong did not believe this, he agreed to the peace and Tibet was never again a threat to China.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Sarmat Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Oct 2009 at 18:58
Originally posted by rider rider wrote:

However, it would seem to me unrealistic if anyone past the civilian command really believed in this. The military leaders, not counting Stalin here for now, should have had a better grasp of the situation than to expect a 'miracle' victory at every point along the road -- after they had failed in several places, why should they have succeeded in Finland by doing the same old things?
 
In fact, everybody in the Soviet Establishment understood the unrealistic nature of "rising working class" claim, but Stalin needed it to calm down and convince the population of the USSR that the war was "just".
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