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Old November 12th, 2012, 01:16 PM   #121

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Originally Posted by interrogator6 View Post
I wonder if anyone would accept Ghandi as a military commander? He led fellow citizens in non-violent protest to win independence for India. Talk about 'thiinking outside the box'.....
The 'non-violent' bit gets in the way of any nomination for best 'military' commander
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Old November 12th, 2012, 01:23 PM   #122

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Originally Posted by Gorge123 View Post
hmmmmm....
Zhang Xun
Guo ziyi ,
Sun Tzu,
Huo Qu Bin,
Sun Bin,
Wei Qing,
Xiang Yu,
Han Xin,
Ceasar,
saladin
jOAN OF ARC
Zhu Ge Liang
Hannibal
Patton,
Rommel
R.E LEE
..........
....
I don't consider myself informed on most of those Chinese gentlemen to comment, but to me, it's really doubtful how much of a military leader Joan'd'Arc was as opposed to a figurehead. She undoubtedly had capable lieutenants, but even if we credit her for all of the French military achievements during her time of command, it doesn't add up to that much in the end; the English reversed most of her territorial gains after her death. She was only really important in reviving French morale.

I'm also unclear on how Patton, Rommel, and R.E. Lee are among the all-time greats. Lee was defeated numerous times, Rommel was brilliant at the division level, but his grasp of command responsibilities and logistics above that was poor, and Patton, while undoubtedly capable, is overrated. His racing about in Sicily was largely showboating that merely cost him casualties, and his overall effect on the war wasn't that dramatic.

Saladin, while talented, also seems questionable to me, as he certainly lost a fair amount of battles. Some of those losses were to a more talented commander, Richard I.

I'll attempt to come up with my own list later.
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Old November 12th, 2012, 02:55 PM   #123

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1. Ghengis Khan
2. Napoleon Bonaparte
3. Julius Caesar
4. Belisarius
5. Marlborough
6. Subutai
7. Scipio Africanus
8. Khalid ibn al-Walid
9. Hannibal Barca
10. Alexander of Macedon

My modest attempt at it. Honorable mentions and personal favorites of mine; Ulysses S. Grant, the best general the United States have produced, and Heraclius, who turned the tide of the war and managed to crush Persia.
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Old November 12th, 2012, 03:20 PM   #124

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Originally Posted by Kevinmeath View Post
Hannibal was in Italy for almost 10 years yes?

Why didn't he make siege equipment locally?
He did use siege equipment. I dont know why this myth persists, but myself and Markdienekes have both cited this fact before.

Last edited by Mangekyou; November 12th, 2012 at 03:28 PM.
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Old November 12th, 2012, 03:47 PM   #125

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Originally Posted by Mangekyou View Post
He did use siege equipment. I dont know why this myth persists, but myself and Markdienekes have both cited this fact before.
http://www.historum.com/war-military...ml#post1085686

Just to add, this link is from a post I made a few months ago, addressing this very issue. Inside are cited sources demonstrating uses of siege equipment by Hannibal.

This post was made partially using sources that Markdienekes made on another forum (which I duly addressed in that post), again addressing this issue.
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Old November 12th, 2012, 03:54 PM   #126
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Originally Posted by Viperlord View Post
1. Ghengis Khan
2. Napoleon Bonaparte
3. Julius Caesar
4. Belisarius
5. Marlborough
6. Subutai
7. Scipio Africanus
8. Khalid ibn al-Walid
9. Hannibal Barca
10. Alexander of Macedon

My modest attempt at it. Honorable mentions and personal favorites of mine; Ulysses S. Grant, the best general the United States have produced, and Heraclius, who turned the tide of the war and managed to crush Persia.
I agree that every single of these people except Hannibal deserve to be up there. But I disagree with the order, but everyone sees things differently (it's more important that we like the same commanders).
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Old November 12th, 2012, 03:57 PM   #127
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mangekyou View Post
http://www.historum.com/war-military...ml#post1085686

Just to add, this link is from a post I made a few months ago, addressing this very issue. Inside are cited sources demonstrating uses of siege equipment by Hannibal.

This post was made partially using sources that Markdienekes made on another forum (which I duly addressed in that post), again addressing this issue.
From the many books I've read of the Punic Wars (some containing tons of original parts of books by Livy. I have yet to get my hands on his full original work) the only time Hannibal really committed to a siege was during his Campaigns against Saguntum in Spain.
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Old November 12th, 2012, 04:26 PM   #128

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Originally Posted by Locke View Post
From the many books I've read of the Punic Wars (some containing tons of original parts of books by Livy. I have yet to get my hands on his full original work) the only time Hannibal really committed to a siege was during his Campaigns against Saguntum in Spain.
Saguntum was a necessary investment for Hannibal. It was a powerful fortress and would have been foolish to leave in his rear as he advanced against Rome. It was not the only serious investment by Hannibal, though.

I think points like this are down to the fact that Hannibal did not have the manpower necessary to capture every town. His strategy depended upon severing Rome from her allies and making tangible gains and profit in that manner. In the latter stages of the war, this was certainly to his detriment, because he was having to shed more men from his army to garrison the gains, especially when when he was have to counter march to areas recaptured by Romans in accordance with protecting allies.

It turned to be an effective strategy the Romans used against him. This does not mean he had no siege equipment in order to demonstrate against fortresses though, although it was impossible some places, like Nola.
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Old November 12th, 2012, 04:30 PM   #129
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Guess this is a s good as any other moment to remind us the elementary fact that at the end of the day all these personal rankings of famous historical commanders so incredibly popular & common all along Historum & elsewhere are fundamentally just a matter of taste, some absolutely arbitrary and subjective educated guesses (at best).

Among other evident major biases because:

- Battles are typically a long series of mistakes from all sides involved; they overwhelmingly tend to be won by the side who may commit less & lesser mistakes, an efficiency which in turn fundamentally comes from the boring daily teamwork exponentialy more than from any personal epiphany or stroke of genius.

- Regarding the vast majority of battles the relevant question is not so much:
"Why did the victor win?"
but
"Why did the other side lose?".

- There are myriad relevant contributors for the miltary outcome of any battle, campaign or war well beyond any brilliancy (or lack of it) of the commander(s) in turn, let say the proficiency of
-- the officers,
-- the soldiers,
-- weaponry and
-- logistics
...just to mention a few of the more obvious factors.

- Not to mention mere luck, of course.

- There's simply no valid objective way of comparing armies or commanders from different timeframes, in fact not even contemporary armies or commanders from non-overlapping locations (let say the Roman and the Han armies).

- The available information is more often than not simply insufficient (not to mention so often so unreliable) for any serious comparison, often regarding even something as elementary as the mere numbers of the contenders, especially so for ancient battles.

- The chauvinistic bias of the available sources is more the rule than the exception and it often couldn't be any more evident.

- Last but not least, because the "in all respects" of the OP is entirely undefined and it has lacked so far the minimal consensus on its required criteria.



So let us just have some fun...

Last edited by sylla1; November 12th, 2012 at 04:39 PM.
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Old November 12th, 2012, 04:32 PM   #130
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Originally Posted by Belisarius View Post
I've always felt Hannibal has been over-hyped, (even by the Romans) when you study the 2nd Punic war in depth and with a degree of objectivity, you can't help but come to that conclusion. I'd be interested in reading your paper if you want to publish it here.
Yeah, I was actually quite fond of Hannibal until I did a far deeper study into the second punic war. I'll see I can find it again or if it's still in the computer files, and put it up.
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