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Who is the greatest military genius of all times?

Discussion in 'Military History' started by KnightMove, Sep 27, 2004.

  1. KnightMove

    KnightMove Ace

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    Of course, this is a quite subjective...

    Alexander? Genghis Khan? Napoleon? Who is your favorit?
     
  2. TheRedBaron

    TheRedBaron Ace

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    I will go with a little list...

    Wellington
    Fuller
    Wolfe
    Sun Tzu
    Nicholson
     
  3. Friedrich

    Friedrich Expert

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    Mine personal favourite is Alexander. That's why is amazingly annoying for me to see Mr. f*cking Irish with his Barbie-like wig playing the graetest conqueror of all times…

    He is closely followed by Julius Cæsar, Trajan, don Juan of Austria, Malbourough, Frederick the Great and of course, Napoléon I.
     
  4. Friedrich

    Friedrich Expert

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    Wellington was lucky… Id' go with Nelson instead. [​IMG]
     
  5. TheRedBaron

    TheRedBaron Ace

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    Well Wellington beat Napoleon... [​IMG]

    I would say he had as much luck as any General. Some of his operations in the Penisular War are excellent, some suffer a little. Not forgetting Wellingtons battles in India! I would say he was 'up there with the best'...

    Nelson, well ok...

    Napoleon - Overated, overweight and took-over Europe! ;)


    What about Kutosov, Freddy?
     
  6. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    Ok, no-one´s perfect but I choose Napoleon....

    [​IMG]

    ;)
     
  7. Friedrich

    Friedrich Expert

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    Nah! Rain, decease, marshal Ney and brave British soldiers screwed it… [​IMG]

    OK, I'll grant you this… the little I've read about Lord Wellington's campaign during the Spanish War of Independence are indeed astonishing and it does prove that he was a great military genious. I don't know, but I got suddenly French-biased… :rolleyes:

    Napoléon is Napoléon. He's special to History… I mean, he was short, fat and ugly, he better was a supperb strategist!

    If Alexander would have been a bad general it wouldn't have mattered, since he was the most handsome, the fairest, most intelligent, knowledged, best lover, philosopher… he was indeed the son of the Gods! [​IMG]

    The best Russian general ever, until WWII. It's a pity he was not heard at Austerlitz.

    And I think he should discuss whether Borodino was a Russian or a French victory… I only know that Kutusov and Bagration did a wonderful job there.
     
  8. Friedrich

    Friedrich Expert

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    You've not made any comments about him:

    [​IMG]

    The half-brother of mighty Felipe II.

    How would History be if Juan, the victor of Lepanto, had replaced Duke of Medina Sidonia in command of the Armada?
     
  9. Erich

    Erich Alte Hase

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    Ah but who is in control of the weather..........the Almighty !! concerning the mighy Armada :cool:

    As for Waterloo, terrain was a factor, remember the hills where the German/British troops formed their tight squares and of course the artillery/musket smoke. La Haye Sainte? where I believe that Jerome' could not bust through was to be a sore spot all during the long drawn out battle of forces. [​IMG]
     
  10. Friedrich

    Friedrich Expert

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    Felipe II was in God's steem, or at least he intended to do so by killing so many bloody protestants. [​IMG]

    However, the newest studies demonstrate the awkwardness of the Spanish fleet to react when they had the wind on their favour and numerical and strategical superiority over the English. Then, what doomed much of the Armada was the Spaniards own incompetence and incredible geographic miscalculation —they though that they were heading southwards into the Atlantic, but in fact they were heading straight to the Scottish and Irish coasts.

    With dry soil the artillery would have smashed the troops behind the hills… and of course, there are Ney's futile cavalry charges without infantry and artillery support whilst the Emperor was resting and fighting pain in his headquarters.
     
  11. Erich

    Erich Alte Hase

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    ah but it wasn't dry and that has alaready been brought up, and like I said even with a so-called height advantage for French troops HQ N and his staffe could not see through the smoke, also the contention with the Prussians and idiotic advancements and returns by notable French commanders........
     
  12. TheRedBaron

    TheRedBaron Ace

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    Perhaps if Napoleons piles hadnt been playing him up...

    At the end of the day, Napoleon always used the same strategy... Wellington drew him onto a position he had observed in 1814 and bleed the French Grand Armee till Bluchers Prussians arrived at Placenoit to finish the job.

    Waterloo was a farce from the start. Especially putting Ney in tactical command...

    The British troops were also ordered to lay down to minimise casualties... And look what happened to the Old Guard - Shot to bits by the British Guards...

    Anyway...

    What about Caeser or Charlemagne???

    We have only touched the tip of the iceberg with Napoleon Vs Wellington...
     
  13. Maverik

    Maverik Member

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    Its heard to have just one but if I had to choose just the one.

    It would have to be Juilus Caeser. Great Military leader, lead from the front! cold and calculated!
     
  14. Mahross

    Mahross Ace

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    Have to admit i would go for Marlborough. Very good at all levels of command.

    John Churchill, 1st Duke of Marlborough (May 26, 1650 - June 16, 1722), in full Captain-General Sir John Churchill, K.G., P.C., 1st Duke of Marlborough, Earl of Marlborough, Baron Churchill of Sandridge in Hertfordshire, Lord Churchill of Eyemouth (in addition to these English and Scotch titles he was also Prince of Mindelheim and a Prince of the Holy Roman Empire), was an English military officer during the War of the Spanish Succession.

    John Churchill was born to Elizabeth and Sir Winston Churchill (the more famous holder of that name is a descendant) in the immediate aftermath of the English Civil War. His father had fought for the Royalists during the conflict and had suffered badly for it -- they lived in very modest circumstances until the end of the Commonwealth. His staunch support for Charles II of England paid off with the return of the king, however, and one of the fruits of this was the appointment of 17-year-old John Churchill to the household of the man second in line to the throne, then-Lord High Admiral, the Duke of York. Joining the navy, he remained at court for a while, but saw turns of duty first in the Mediterranean and in the last of the Anglo-Dutch Wars. In the latter, he became a Marine officer, and was attached to the siege of Maastricht, his first taste of land battle. Having come to the attention of the French crown during this action, he moved onto the fighting in Alsace, where he fought with one of the leading generals of the day, Marshal Turenne.

    That war ended in 1674, and Churchill settled down to peaceful life.In 1678, he married Sarah Jennings, who would come to fiercely present his interests at court while he was off fighting on the Continent. In 1682, then-Colonel Churchill entered the Scotch peerage as Lord Churchill of Eyemouth. In the years to follow he engaged in various diplomatic missions to Spain and their former enemy, the Dutch United Provinces, largely in opposition to French interests. In 1685, Charles II died without issue, and Churchill's former employer, the Duke of York, became James II of England. Shortly thereafter James elevated him to the peerage as Baron Churchill of Sandridge in Hertfordshire.

    Within a few months, the new king faced a series of rebellions, one of which was by the Duke of Monmouth. Churchill was promoted major-general in July 1685 and appointed head of the loyalist troops, then quickly subordinated to the Earl of Feversham. It is believed that this lack of confidence was what eventually turned Churchill from loyalty to the Stuart kings. Churchill nevertheless distinguished himself during the fighting, and became an important figure in the army.

    In 1688, William of Orange invaded England with the support of most of the nobility, as James II was a Catholic and appeared to be on the road to introducing absolutist rule into his kingdom. James promoted Churchill to lieutenant-general in November and ordered him to engage and defeat the invaders; instead he deserted to the Orange cause, which caused most of the army to come with him and put James into a very difficult position. He quit the country for France rather than fight. The Glorious Revolution had been pulled off with far less bloodshed than anyone expected, and the Stuarts no longer ruled in Britain. In reward Churchill was appointed a Privy Councillor (hence the postnominal abbreviation "P.C.") in February 1689 and created Earl of Marlborough in April.

    Marlborough was out of the public sphere to a large extent for the next few years, as William did not entirely trust the Stuart supporter. During this time, his most notable activity was some time as the Governor of the Hudson's Bay Company. The Canadian town of Churchill, Manitoba, a former Company outpost, gains its name from this connection.

    He returned to the forefront with events leading up to the War of the Spanish Succession in 1701. The grandson of the King of France, Louis XIV, was put forward as heir to the throne of Spain, and rather than allow France to expand its power to such a great extent, a coalition of European powers (including Britain) prepared for war. Marlborough was first put to use commanding English and Dutch forces opposing the Swedish allies of France. He was successful in this, and when William died in 1702, Marlborough was reaching his peak.

    William's successor, Queen Anne, was a close friend of Marlborough's wife, and he enjoyed the new queen's confidence and favour; immediately upon her succession to the throne he was knighted as a member of the Order of the Garter (hence the postnominal abbreviation "K.G."), appointed captain-general of the English troops, and made Master-General of the Ordnance. The same year, the War of the Spanish Succession with France finally broke out into the open and Captain-General the Earl of Marlborough was made commander-in-chief of the Allied armies. Despite the intransigence of his Dutch troops, Marlborough won a series of victories in 1703 and was created Duke of Marlborough, as well as his creation within the Empire as a Prince of the Empire and Prince of Mindelheim. The war continued, however, and in combination with Prince Eugene of Savoy he soundly defeated the French at the Battles of Blenheim and Ramillies.

    Things were taking a turn for the worse in Spain, however, and his wife's friendship with the queen was gradually falling apart. Despite the earlier defeats, the French refused to give in, and continued attacking that part of the Low Countries or the Netherlands that was later to become Belgium. By 1708 he had had to fight a pitched battle against French forces once again, this time winning the Battle of Oudenarde. One more win followed at the Battle of Malplaquet in 1709. In Britain, however, the Whig Party had come to power and continued undermining the relationship he had with Anne. By 1711 he was recalled from the Continent, accused of embezzlement, and sent into a brief exile. The war ground on and eventually ended in mutual exhaustion in 1714.

    Anne died shortly thereafter, and once again Marlborough was back in favour of British royalty, putting up funds in support of the Elector of Hanover. The Elector became king as George I, and Marlborough returned to England and settled into retirement. He spent most of his remaining days working on his new home, Blenheim Palace, and died in 1722.

    Marlborough's notable descendants include Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire, Winston Churchill, Diana, Princess of Wales and her namesake, an 18th century Lady Diana Spencer.
     
  15. TheRedBaron

    TheRedBaron Ace

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    Why did you paste that from Mahross? Or was it from memory... ;)

    Marlbourgh... again, overated. Look at the opposition!

    Plus he fought against the rebels at Sedgemoor and then changed sides in 1688... Two-faced git!
     
  16. Friedrich

    Friedrich Expert

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    Also, I've just read a contemporary description of the young Cæsar and it literally stated that "[he] had a girl's face, with rosy thin lips and long eyelashes"… :rolleyes: [​IMG]

    Hey, Red!

    How can Malbourough be overrated? He prevented Louis XIV to conquer Europe as Wellington did with Napoléon I a century later…

    And beating the greatest French rulers of all times is quite a big deal! [​IMG]

    Remember the old saying? "There was an Athens, there was a Rome and there is a Paris".

    Of course, after a century and two world wars the saying must be re-newed with "there was a Paris and there is a New York —or at least until Osama or Bush destroy it". :cool:

    [ 29. September 2004, 09:45 AM: Message edited by: General der Infanterie Friedrich H ]
     
  17. KnightMove

    KnightMove Ace

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    Hindering other people to conquer continents is a good job, but those who manage to do so deserve more attention, I think... that's why I wonder nobody mentioned Genghis Khan yet? He's my favorite, #1 of all conquerers. He took by assault the by far greatest empire of all times (despite the Soviet Union), way more than all others mentioned yet achieved.

    [ 29. September 2004, 12:36 PM: Message edited by: KnightMove ]
     
  18. KnightMove

    KnightMove Ace

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  19. TheRedBaron

    TheRedBaron Ace

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    Wolfe - Captured Quebec via amphibious landing.

    John Nicholson - Secured India for the Briitish Empire via military and political means during 1840's. Was responsible for enlarging the Indian state and removing the power of the Majharattas and the Sikhs amongst others. Also was instrunmental in supressing the indian Muting. See Charles Allen's book 'Soldier Sahibs' for more.
     
  20. KnightMove

    KnightMove Ace

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    Thx for the info. But then, your list is a little anglo-centric, isn't it?

    Other thing...

    I agree that you do overrate Marlborough a little, as he shared his greatest victories with Prince Eugene of Savoy, who was possibly even the greater military genius of the two.

    You esteem Marlborough also above Frederick the Great, which doesn't seem right to me. Yes, Friedrich DID commit some very harsh mistakes, but in the end, his positive sides dominate, and he won!

    Without Friedrich, there would never have been a strong Germany, and without a strong Germany, world history... well, would have been slightly different. [​IMG]

    [ 29. September 2004, 06:56 PM: Message edited by: KnightMove ]
     

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