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The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 01:26:20


Askingforit138
Level 26
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Who do you think are the Best Military Minds of History?
My top three:
1. Alexander The Great
2. Napoleon Bonaparte
3. Julius Caesar
The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 02:02:26


[REGL] Pooh 
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I think A List without Sun Tsu and Patton would be an incomplete List.
The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 02:03:33


Askingforit138
Level 26
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Yes, they were also great military minds, but I think Alexander had the best
The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 02:13:54


Richard Sharpe 
Level 59
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Hannibal Barca
Arthur Wellesley
The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 02:14:59


Askingforit138
Level 26
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Hannibal, I agree with, but I feel embaressed to ask, who was Arthur Wellesley?
The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 02:21:48


Richard Sharpe 
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The guy who kicked the crap out of your #2

He is better known as the Duke of Wellington
The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 02:24:20


Askingforit138
Level 26
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Ah! Now i recognize him! But you do realize that he only won Waterloo, because of the Prussians? And in Spain, Ill give you that one.
The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 02:27:21


Richard Sharpe 
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Also, if you are embarrassed to ask, why do so? It's faster to google/wiki it than ask and await a response...

Wellesley kicked the shite out of France in the Peninsular War and utterly confounded the French marshalls. Meanwhile Napoleon was off destroying his own army by retreating via the same route he attacked in winter of all times. Sheer military genius...
The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 02:31:39


Askingforit138
Level 26
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Napoleon was also the General who kicked the shit out of the Russians, Prussians, Austrians, and The British at the same time (not same battle, war) with the odds againist him. He drove the Austrians out of Italy twice, Conquered Egypt, Austria, and Prussia, but made a few mistakes which cost him everything.
The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 02:33:46


Richard Sharpe 
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When, exactly, did Napoleon defeat the British? Wellesley was practically undefeated in the Peninsular campaign.

The Russian retreat is one of the greatest military disasters in history.

Also i recommend you look up the Battle of Assaye and Second Marahta War
The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 02:36:00


Askingforit138
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Ah,but Napoleon was not PERSONALLY leading the troops in Spain. I'll give you Russia, but how many countless times had Napoleon defeated combined Allied troops? You cant deny he was a great general.
The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 02:44:49


Richard Sharpe 
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Actually I can.

His infantry strategy was horrid... he would win via sheer force of numbers more than good strategy. He would just send massive columns at poorly disciplined soldiers who would scatter.

Once the French faced the disciplined British they got completely owned thanks to their columns. At best these columns could have 10% of their muskets fire while 100% of British muskets could fire. Is it any wonder the columns routinely got shredded?

But did Napoleon or his marshalls change tactics in the wake of these setbacks? Nope... they kept plugging along using strategies that had been proven not to work. Hardly what I expect of a military genius.

He also personally refused to allow the use of rifles which proved a considerable advantage for the British and obviously became the standard weapon soon thereafter.
The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 02:49:48


Askingforit138
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Napoleon was a hundred years ahead in supply trains and used Artillery in such a way that was unpreceeded! He was a master of artillery. He used a early from of Blitzkrieg to surprise his enemies and threw them off balance. He created the glorious french empire which stretched from spain to Poland!
The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 02:51:29


devilnis 
Level 10
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Sun Tzu
Erwin Rommel
Charlemagne
The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 02:53:07


Richard Sharpe 
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It's unprecedented, not unpreceeded.

There is more to war than simply artillery. A good tactician is flexible and learns from his mistakes instead of repeating them. He was good but he had many failings.
The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 02:59:16

BishesUpInErr (AHoL)
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Richard, why so hostile? KGB is presenting his argument in a clear manner and is inspiring a good debate. Meanwhile, back in preschool, you're attacking instead of debating, and resorting to every little weapon you own, including spell-check.
The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 03:09:42


Richard Sharpe 
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I didn't realize I was even being hostile... merely presenting a case against Napoleon's military genius,

As for the correction, I thought he would want to know. I certainly would in his shoes. If he is insulted by it then he needs thicker skin.
The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 03:25:02


sasha grey
Level 54
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Napoleon kicked shit of russians?
u better learn history kid
The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 03:38:35

Qi 
Level 55
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Also: Sun Bin, Qin Shihuang, Caesar, Maurice of Nassau, Gustav Adolphus, Prince Eugene of Savoy, Duke of Malborough, Robert E. Lee, Colin Powell (the general, not the statesman)
The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 03:41:51


Richard Sharpe 
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While Lee was quite good I think Longstreet was the better option. Lee was a superb leader but he would have been better off going with the defensive style that Longstreet advocated. The South could not win on the offensive... only by outlasing the North.
The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 03:56:01

RvW 
Level 46
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@KGB:
Your initial question was "Who do you think are the Best Military Minds of History?". Now, if you yourself state "He drove the Austrians out of Italy twice, Conquered Egypt, Austria, and Prussia, **but made a few mistakes which cost him everything**." and you seem to agree with Richard about his infantry tactics being sub-par (when Richard said so you didn't refute it, instead naming other areas where he was strong), then does that really qualify him as one of the "Best Military Minds of History"...?

Besides, being able to win with vastly superior troops and numbers does not make him a military genius. Maybe a political genius (for creating and training those troops), but a true military genius can turn being outnumbered and outgunned into a victory (or turn an inevitable enemy victory from a glorious one into a [pyrrhic victory](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pyrrhic_victory), examples: [Battle of Thermopylae](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Thermopylae)).

|> He created the glorious french empire which stretched from spain to Poland!

Meh, that's not even half the size of the Third Reich. Nor is it all that impressive when compared to the Alexandrian or Roman empires (admittedly, you place Alexander higher on the list and having Julius Caesar lower makes sense, since he didn't exactly build the Roman empire single-handedly).

---

@Richelieu: Are those in order, or just nominees?

@Richard: Did you, by any chance, means "outlasTing the North"? :p
The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 04:12:22

Qi 
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given the nature of war, no military genius is perfect. if you want a nearly perfect killer, nominate truman...
The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 04:19:21


sasha grey
Level 54
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no military genius is pefect except Suvorov, i would say ;p
The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 04:20:40


sasha grey
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"One of the few great generals in history who never lost a battle along with the likes of Alexander the Great, Julius Caesar, and Genghis Khan"
The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 09:10:49

unknownsoldier 
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Sharpe: you ought to know of the Battle of Corunna, and the embarrassing way we were kicked out of Spain by Napoleon.

it is interesting, imo, that there are few/no great british generals, especially given that the British were usually successful in their wars. victories seem to have been more due to good rank and file, persistence, and a type of plodding competence, rather than brilliant generalship. Montgomery and Wellington might be our best 2 recent examples, and yet they are (mostly) regarded as having won through a solid competence, attrition, and (often) weight of numbers. (btw, Nelson would be a fine exception, but we're only doing land wars here).

why is this? i don't really know. a few things might be:
the British tend not to have liked 'flashy' brilliance, so maybe the brilliance of their generals was understated by historians.
less chances for brilliant generals to rise to the top - a more stable nation meant less opportunities for outsiders - would Napoleon (or, especially, many of his (often 'lower class') marshals) have risen to the top in Britain? i doubt it.
often, when the odds are on your side anyway, it is best to 'play it safe' - you win, almost surely, but you don't go down in history as great.
The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 09:48:22


De–ľoZ 
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I'm surprised. Cyrus the Great has to be the greatest military commander of all time.
Georgy Zhukov comes to mind as well; although I wouldn't call him the best [just one of the best]
The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 12:44:25


Richard Sharpe 
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RvW, yes I meant outlasted. Don't think Lee was developing lasers in his spare time!

unknown, I was thinking more along the lines of the campaigns involving Wellesley, though you are correct in saying Corunna was a defeat. Even then the British inflicted more casualties on the French. Unless of course you are grouping the preceding retreat in with the actual battle. (The we amused me since I am not British... in fact my heritage says I should loathe the British!)
The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 12:59:37


Ironheart
Level 53
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why did you all forget Julius Ceasar
and Scorpius the older
maybe Scorpius the younger
the Scorpius clan defeated Hannibal and were great themselves
don't forget Pompey Julius Ceaser's enemy once
The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 13:09:01


Richard Sharpe 
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Ironhear, I think you mean Scipio... and only Scipio Africanus (the younger I believe) defeated Hannibal at Zama. His father was destroyed on two occasions by Hannibal if memory serves me correctly
The Best Military Genuises in History.: 4/6/2012 13:09:24

unknownsoldier 
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Sharpe, yes, i meant the overall campaign. even winning battles but losing the campaign or the war, counts as defeat. Napoleon managed his campaign there very well.

good that the 'we' amused you, my mistake - Sharpe seems a very British character to name yourself after - i'm now guessing you're from the Irish Republic?
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